The GLBTQ Encyclopedia has an interesting observation on when a gay or lesbian is most likely to admit their homosexuality to themselves. It states:
Women repress their homosexuality more than do gay men. Though they may engage in homosexual activity, gay men often do not label themselves as gay until they fall in love with another man, whereas women tend to discover their lesbianism when they experience sexual desire for another woman. The crisis of identity felt by gay men in heterosexual marriages usually occurs when they become emotionally involved with another man as opposed to merely engaging in homosexual sex.I thought this was an interesting observation and entirely counter-intuitive. We are raised with the stereotypes that all a man thinks about is sex and that women are primarily interested in emotions. Perhaps that is why some men are able to compartmentalize and have sex with other men without believing they are homosexual. It only being an emotional attachment that suddenly convinces them that they are gay because it is so out of the ordinary. Likewise, a woman who feels lots of emotional attachment to other women may not recognize her lesbianism until she feels unmistakable physical attraction for another woman, again because it goes so far against the cultural norm.
Given this information, there are probably several times I should have recognized that I was gay. Perhaps most obvious in retrospect was one of my mission companionship. My relationship with my mission companion had as much of an emotional component as a physical component and my mission journal contains some surprisingly candid observations about my feelings for my companion. But the mission was probably also the least safe time emotionally for me to be able to recognize my homosexuality, with such a personal price of public humiliation and the dedication I felt toward exact obedience to the church.