“As an aloof, lonely young woman, I had a desperate need to be loved, to prove myself sexually, therefore worthy. Many familial factors contributed to this, of course, but the underpinning of my alliances was initially fueled more by desperation than attraction. I used sex as a tool to manipulate and control meaningless male encounters so I’d feel validated. The fact that I wasn’t particularly attracted during these hook-ups didn’t weigh on me; that was never the goal. I married at nineteen, which was like being adrift in an unwelcome sea and coming upon a prickly log, which I hoped could keep me afloat. I didn’t wait for a different kind of log; I just grabbed on and kept my chin up. Over the years, several such logs bobbed my way. Lucky me.

Cut to thirty years, three husbands, and five children later, I meet a woman who turns my head around. She is twenty-five years my junior…young enough for me to realize it could never go much
beyond the OH-MY-GOD-I’M-A-LESBIAN moment…and the relationship dies a sad little death. But I do NOT. The penny has dropped;the ship has sailed; the coop is flown; a 55-year-old baby dyke is born!”

—Meredith Baxter Actress & Producer

 

It may or may not surprise you to know that one in ten girls is sexually attracted to other girls. As adolescents, personal sexuality is completely confusing since our only understanding of sex comes from what we see and hear in movies, on TV, from social media, or older siblings or friends. As a high school athlete I was aware of my own attraction to my coaches and teammates. What did that mean, I wondered? Watching Mariel Hemingway as an athlete who falls in love with her female teammate in the 1982 movie Personal Best (radical, at the time!) I was alternately “grossed out” and secretly fascinated.


Chapter Photos