My name is Ben Gibson and I’m from Andrews, Texas.
I found love when I was 16 with a girl I met in high school. And it was probably one of the best times of my entire life. We rode four-wheelers. We were with together – we were with each other all the time. We’d even fell asleep on the phone together. It ended a few years into it because I was still exploring my sexuality, still, with her, and I happened to cheat on her with a guy. I guess after that was the beginning of me trying to figure out what my sexuality was.
Years later, I met a guy in West Texas that – I was still super closeted – and I met a guy that I caught some feelings for. And it was the first time that I kind of realized that, I was like, well, I can actually feel for a guy too? That’s crazy. I thought I could only do that with – do that with a girl. I guess going through the experience of dating him was – it was kind of eye-opening in that I was faced with this decision and I was telling myself that I either I had to be with a girl or I had to be with a guy. And if I was with a girl, then I would just be straight, and if I was with a guy, then I would just be gay. Then I – and if I was with a guy, then I would choose to come out, if I was with a guy, if I fell in love and wanted to be with a guy.
So I moved to Austin and moved Austin to start my first business and start life over here because I wanted to get away from my hometown for a little bit. And there was a an evening I was spending with my friend – a very close friend and already I got to know very well and trust him. Such a good heart that he has. And, kind of, and he was one of the first people I was really opening up to about the struggle between – of my sexuality.
I remember having a conversation in his living room and we were just talking about the philosophy of sexuality, right, like what is it and, like, how does it work. Just through that conversation, he just brought up an idea that sexuality is potentially fluid. And that word – fluid – meaning that you can change and that it maybe it’s not the same forever or maybe that it’s not concrete. That idea really sparked something in me.
After kind of going through that and walking into this idea more that I’m potentially bisexual and that maybe it could be a thing that I just own that, but I wasn’t really ready to say that or to tell everybody that.
I got into a relationship not too long ago and was, like, kind of tired of the feeling of being torn and with having just one sex, honestly. Like, if I’m with a man – because I would date a guy and I would think about or desire to be with a woman. Or if I was dating a woman, then I’d want – desire to be with the guy. And so I decided, hey, well maybe the solution is a polyamorous relationship. And I thought that that might be a cool thing to try, so I tried that. Through exploring polyamory, I realized that it wasn’t so much about me wanting to be with both sexes at the same time. It was more about me of being more comfortable with myself and being able to express that with whomever I was with.
I have a routine of journaling in the morning but this morning, I’m journaling about – I’m journaling about relationships and looking for love and how it’s gonna play in my life. And just leaving this polyamorous relationship, it just kind of clicked that if I am not able to – if I’m not able to express with anyone that I’m ever with how I feel about my sexuality, then I’m not going to be able to have an authentic relationship. So I put a text message together – right then, I put a text message together and sent it to the remaining people who didn’t know that I was queer: my mom, my brother, my older sister, and, I think, my dad.
“Hey. Just want to let you know I’m bisexual and I don’t know if I’m going to marry a man or a woman but I hope you can accept this about me. I’ll give you some time. I understand it can be difficult. Love you, Ben” And sent it.
As soon as I came out to them, I realized that it was, for me, it wasn’t about them. In this whole life that I was living was for them – like this suppression, this holding back – was for them. It was very recent for me, so I’m still kind of moving to that. And I’m still moving through on learning how to express myself sexually. I’m getting more comfortable. I’m taking steps towards finding my voice and just being more accepting of myself of it.
I would say to anyone out there that may be experiencing a fluid sexuality that you can figure it out. You just have to keep trying and keep learning and keep trying to express yourself with your closest ones. And through that, you’ll find some peace. You’ll find some answers.