‘It Just Felt Natural’: Maria Thattil Opens Up About Questioning Her Sexuality

While a romance seems to be blossoming between Maria Thattil and Joey Essex, Miss Australia also revealed she’s questioned her sexuality in the past.

Speaking to her jungle bestie David Subritzky, Maria joked about her connection with Joey admitting that the pair are both “enjoying each other’s company” and that she clearly enjoys spending time with the reality star.

But as they chatted more about the potential for romance, Maria opened up to David saying, “I do have something that I haven’t told anyone”.

Clearly nervous to discuss, Maria admitted, “Growing up I always thought, like, maybe I was a little bicurious,” she said, adding that she has “only ever dated straight people” but had crushes on women and was able to “appreciate an attractive woman”.

While she has always identified as straight, Maria told David that the attraction to women never truly went away, though she felt like it was easier to not speak about it publicly.

“I’ve always been curious about that,” she said but also added that she would often push any thoughts aside. “I’ve always buried that side of myself,” she revealed.

“I just felt like it’s just easier to just be like, you know, I date men… it is easier for people to understand me.

“Before I came here I was out at a party and I met a girl, and we ended up hooking up and it just felt natural,” Maria said.

On Tuesday night Maria spoke about her chosen charity, Minus18, which she picked in honour of her brother Dom. On social media she explained further, writing about how Dom grew up in a religious household “where diversity was not celebrated in the Aussie landscape”.

“For anyone who has felt invalidated, unsupported, disempowered or excluded because of gender/sexual identity,” Maria’s post continued, “If we stopped boxing ourselves in to old ideas about gender and sex, we would stop beating others down when they climb out of that box.”

Back in the jungle, Maria admitted that she struggled with her own sense of shame and stigma while talking about her own sexual identity.

“I just want to break out of that and be like, it’s okay,” she said, later adding, “It is so nice to say it and be like, there’s absolutely nothing wrong.”

I’m A Celebrity… Get Me Out Of Here! airs Sunday to Thursday at 7.30 on Network 10 and on demand on 10 play