Unsolicited Advice to Questioning Teenage Girls

When your friends go on about their crushes
do not feign interest in a boy just to blend in
tell them you would rather kiss girls even though that scares you
tell them you’re confused but
do not lie

When your uncle asks if you prefer Gail or Peta
explain to him that you like Katniss
that her female form strikes you more
than any teenage boy could

And when a girl comes up to you and offers to tell you a secret
listen to her
she will become the first love of your life

When a priest tells you that the way you feel is wrong
spit in his face
who you are is not a sin
and his cross is the biggest lie of all

When you start getting feelings for your best friend
do not ignore them
contemplate what it means to feel
and how friendship differs from love

When you can only imagine kissing her every time you see her
do not feel ashamed
your feelings are healthy and valid
and you deserve the same in return

And when you cry so much your eyes swell up
do not cry for her

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This is not how it ends

It starts with a tear
a gut-wrenching heartbroken sob
that forces my whole body to tremor
sweating with anxiety and pitiless emotions
which sends me head first into what
my therapist calls a “spiral of doom”

Degradation and self-deprecation
consume my being
and I can only think of how
lonely I feel or how
I’m not being loved or
fucked (in the more pleasurable sense)
or how the only person who ever
cared for me threw my love
away

But perhaps that’s why it hurts
to know my efforts will
always be greater
my love will always be fuller
than anything anyone can
offer me