I am a 17-year-old bisexual (out to anyone who bothers asking) in a boarding school. As is to be expected while living with other 17 and 18-year-olds, I have a crush on my supposedly straight friend. She has said homophobic comments in the past (e.g. gays should be celibate or at least pretend to be straight), mainly due to a very conservative Christian upbringing, but is fine with my sexuality.
Despite this, I was wondering if she may be bicurious as she has gotten with girls (although usually while drunk) and is constantly flirting with me beyond normal realms of platonic female friendship. There has also been a rumor that she is bi going around. Is there a chance that she simply isn’t comfortable with being completely out (due to religion)? Also would there be any subtle way for me to find out as a blunt confrontation is likely to end badly seeing as we live in the same building and would make life extremely awkward?—Hopeless Dreamer
Anna says: Straight girls, straight girls everywhere, and not a one to make out with. Because they’re straight, that’s why.
Willie Wonka references aside, I’m not really sure why you want to make out with this lady because she sounds homophobic to a crazy extent—forced celibacy, really? Also, someone tell her that straight people make gay babies too. My parents, for firsties. Most people’s parents, for secondsies. Really it’s straight people who should be celibate, if we’re going to get into it, which we’re not because she’s awful and you should make out with someone who is not a complete hypocrite.
But since I’ve got your attention, let me ask you this, since in high school, especially a confined boarding school atmosphere, rumors run rampant and are often unfounded. Do you know for a fact that your crush hooked up with other girls? Did you see it? Is it on YouTube? If not, you might question the veracity of that rumor. Not saying it ain’t true—I mean, boarding school is known for two things, same-sex experimentation and khakis—but you can’t trust everything you hear, no matter how many times you’ve watched Lost and Delirious.
If you have it on good authority that she is in fact “getting with” girls while espousing those wackadoo beliefs, then she is incredibly closeted and you should still run for the hills. Is it really worth your while to hit on someone who is deeply lying to themselves? I see no good coming from that, and I say that as someone who is not immune to the charms of a girl in a plaid, boarding school skirt.
If you still really really want to know, (and again, you’re on your own with this. I’m on Team Run Away From Her) then the next time she is hitting on you (alone, not anywhere near her friends), ask her “Are you flirting with me?” in a flirtatious, nonjudgmental way, and see how she responds. If she calls you a dyke or gets defensive or acts weird in any way, then you’ll have your answer, and can still safely run for the hills, without being blunt or overly confrontational.
Option three: Wait until she’s in college.
Option four: Run for the meadows. Because hills are labor-intensive!
Hailing from the rough-and-tumble deserts of southern Arizona, where one doesn’t have to bother with such trivialities as “coats” or “daylight savings time,” Anna Pulley is a freelance writer living in San Francisco. Find her at annapulley.com and on Twitter @annapulley. Send her your The Hook Up questions at firstname.lastname@example.org.