Becky Albertalli, the author of Simon vs the Homo Sapiens Agenda, the book that the gay teen rom com Love, Simon was adapted from, and the lesbian love story Leah on the Offbeat, has come out as bisexual.
In a lengthy post on Medium, Albertalli detailed her journey, and said she didn’t have a frame of reference for her sexual orientation for a long time, even as an author, and writing the books helped her find it, in her thirties.
Albertalli wrote about the difficulties of finding her way as her works of fiction and their offspring were being lauded:
“There were tweets and threads and blog posts, and just about every single one I came across mentioned my straightness. And when Leah debuted on the NYT list, authors I admired and respected tweeted their disappointment that this “first” had been taken by a straight woman. Of course, Leah wasn’t the first f/f YA book to hit the New York Times list. And maybe people were wrong about the other stuff too. But the attention and scrutiny were so overwhelming, and it all hurt so badly, I slammed the lid down on that box and forgot I’d ever cracked it open. …. To me, it felt like there was never a break in the discourse, and it was often searingly personal. I was frequently mentioned by name, held up again and again as the quintessential example of allocishet inauthenticity. I was a straight woman writing shitty queer books for the straights, profiting off of communities I had no connection to.”
Added Albertalli: “You know what’s a mindfuck? Questioning your sexual identity in your thirties when every self-appointed literary expert on Twitter has to share their hot take on the matter. Imagine hundreds of people claiming to know every nuance of your sexuality just from reading your novels. Imagine trying to make space for your own uncertainty. Imagine if you had a Greek chorus of internet strangers propping up your imposter syndrome at every stage of the process.”
“Can we make space for those of us who are still discovering ourselves?” Albertalli asked. “Can we be a little more compassionate? Can we make this a little less awful for the next person? … Anyway, all of this is to say: I’m bi. Sorry it took me so long to get here. But then again, at least the little red coming out book I needed was already on my shelf (in about thirty different languages).I think I finally know why I wrote it.”
Read her full essay HERE.