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Does Joining Roller Derby Make You Gay? (Part 2)

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Roller derby NT-QG 1700What does it feel like when a married heterosexual woman falls in love with her female roller derby teammate and doesn't tell anyone -- until now?

In part 1 of "Does Joining Roller Derby Make You Gay?" we met out roller derby girl "Predator-in-Chief," who divorced her husband to be with a woman. In part 2 we meet Deliah Lincoln, who is still currently married to her husband of over 10 years. Deliah is not currently out and has kept her emotions and story bottled up for the past few years. She continues to be reserved with her immediate circle of friends and family when it comes to revealing her true self.

Ilana Rapp: Why did you join roller derby?

Deliah Lincoln: I joined derby because I was always into roller skating. I have children with my husband. I took them to a local rink for a party and saw a recruitment poster for a league and decided to give it a try.

Rapp: Have you ever been attracted to women?

Deliah Lincoln: I have never been attracted to women prior to derby, despite having gay family members and friends.

Rapp: You entered derby still married to your husband. What happened that triggered you to have a relationship with a woman? Tell your story about your first sexual and/or mental relationship with this woman.

Lincoln: Women in roller derby are different than the girls I grew up with. They are much more physical with each other, hugging, dancing on each other, etc. It was a bit uncomfortable for me for a while. I met a lot of women who were beautiful and such amazing skaters. I was in awe of them. I still had no kind of physical attraction, though.

Then I became good friends with another girl in the league who was also married with children. We were skating one time, just joking around and having fun. She grabbed me by the hips and I was like, "Whoa, why did I all of a sudden feel a physical attraction?" I played around with the thought in my head but figured it was just a deep admiration, because she was so beautiful, both inside and out, plus an amazing skater.

That was it for a few.months. Then, at a party, she touched me purposely on the inside of my thigh. My body reacted -- weird for me, because I rarely get turned on. I didn't know how to react, so I didn't. Our conversations became more flirty, and I asked her on a date, kind of half-kidding, to see how she would react. Turns out she was OK with it, and I ended up going to her house. We were supposed to go out but instead ended up drinking wine. I was the one who actually kissed her first.

One thing led to another, and we ended up having a sexual relationship for a few months. That ended, probably because I didn't really know what to do. That was years ago. We are still friends. The problem is that I do love her. We still have sort of a physical relationship, but not a sexual one. I haven't been attracted to a girl since.

Rapp: Do your teammates know about you and their derby sister?

Lincoln: Some of the league knows. Some don't. My relationships with anyone are mine. I'm not ashamed of them; they're just no one's business.

Rapp: What happened when your husband found out?

Lincoln: When my husband first found out, he thought it was cute. Once he realized I had feelings for this girl, it hurt and scared him. I told him the truth, that one relationship had nothing to do with the other. If anything, it made me love him more, because he accepted me.

Rapp: How has roller derby helped you in everyday, normal circumstances?

Lincoln: It's hard to explain the magnitude of how derby changes your life. You are brought together with women of all ages, religions, cultures, backgrounds and beliefs that in "real life" you wouldn't even talk to. Now these women are not only your friends but your sisters, closer than family. We have held each other's hands through marriages, divorces, births and deaths. We have driven each other to chemo appointments, helped plan baby showers, ran fundraisers for teammates who have had critically ill children and even bailed each other out of jail. There truly isn't any type of sorority, sport or friendship that can compare.

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See part 1 of "Does Joining Roller Derby Make You Gay?" to read about how roller derby blocker Predator-in-Chief left her husband for the woman of her dreams.