Pro Expression, Anti Repression. what does it mean to me, and why do i find it important?

well, ever since i joined the internet, i've always felt lots of joy regarding the fact that online, anyone can be anyone they want to be. most of my early internet life was spent simply just pretending to be a puppy on online forums, or spending hours researching and discussing my various interests. it's a good feeling, knowing there are people like you out there... this feeling was pretty small but fulfilling, at that younger age.

of course, as i grew and reached an older age, i begun to experience romantic and sensual feelings that i had read about on the internet, but i wasn't so sure of... at this time, i was around 12-13 or so, and had moved on from my humble roots of virtual pet sites onto the changing world of social media and higher expectations and fear of judgement. there was no issue with my feelings themselves; everyone my age was beginning to talk about these things, but what cast me apart was the subject of my affections.

there's an interesting intersection between being a lesbian and being a paraphile that began to present itself to me around this time. i was aware i liked girls and wanted to date them, yes, but there was more to it than what i saw being discussed at the time. i like girls who can take care of me and dote on me as if i was much younger than i actually am, or if i were a baby animal, or a younger sister... and, regrettably so, i like girls that i can treat in that way in return. in a way, my sexuality had directly interwoven itself with my fantasies, and controlled a lot of my mind.

the purity culture that had begun to arise around this time really affected me, as someone who had to come to terms with having intimate thoughts in general, having intimate thoughts about girls, and having bad intimate thoughts about girls. it all stacked on top of each other in a very distressing fashion, and i begun to worry that i was secretly an awful person for wanting these things, or that i'd hurt someone while not paying attention. i ended up getting roped into the mindset of fantasy equating to actions in reality, and berated those who felt the same things that i was, albeit in secret.

one day, i stepped back and reconsidered some things. i realized something: hey, my fantasies haven't hurt anyone, and neither have these people's. what exactly am i fighting for? everyone here seems perfectly safe. the slippery slope fallacy drilled into my head began to crumble, as i realized that nobody was actually harmed by these people simply loving themseves, socially unacceptable thoughts and all. i felt a deep longing in my heart. i wanted to express my feelings and thoughts too, and i wanted to be loved for them. i opened up to the people close to me at the time, and received immense support, even if i lost a few friends in the process. this is where my healing starts.

it was a long and emotional process reteaching myself that my feelings aren't as bad as i feel they are, but a loving partner and an accepting group of friends eventually built me up enough to love myself for who i am, and accept that i can't change the way i am. that brings me to now. i spread the PEAR idealogy because i want people to know that their fantasies deserve to be expressed in any healthy way they wish, and they shouldnt repress who they are. PEAR, at its core, is simply just loving yourself and loving others. and to me, that's the most important thing of all.

my friend, if you're having the same fantasies i do, whether it be for lolis or little cartoon creatures or a ship you hold close to your heart, just accept it! there's no use arguing with yourself over it, you'll just hurt yourself. find friends who have common interests, or simply just love you for who you are. express yourself. don't repress yourself. remember you're loved, no matter to whom or which way you give your love... ♥