February 02, 2011

Wanderson

Wanderson, age 6
São Paulo, Brazil (1983)

If you are a gay teenager, you might have thought about ending your own life.
I know I did. I was raised believing that being gay was wrong and that getting married, having kids, and forming a family was the only thing in store for me.

I used to pray before going to bed and ask the Lord to please make me straight, as if it was as that simple. I saw myself as a pervert, and I didn’t realize that my desire for boys was beginning to show.

My dad used to yell at me to talk like a man. I tried really hard but couldn't do it, and as I was just a child, why should I sound like an adult?

As a teenager, it got worse since as my friends started dating, and I was sure that I'd meet the right girl, and she would make me straight. Of course, that never happened and I started feeling depressed all the time.

All I wanted to do was die so the pain would stop.

And then I fell in love with my best friend. I was dating - or trying to date - a girl at the time, but my friend was all I could think of. I can't describe the confusion and pain I went through, and being only 16, couldn't even think about coming out or accepting what I was.

Years passed, and when I turned 23,
I decided it was time to have a conversation with me, myself and I.

And it was a different Wanderson that heard me say: 'I’m gay!' I smiled and he smiled back, and then all was much lighter and free. After that I started coming out to my friends, and every time I did, I felt better and better.

At home, everything was basically bad. And just when I thought it couldn't get any worse, someone told my mother about me. That drove her away from me, as she was incapable of handling a gay son. My sister found some love letters I'd sent to a man, and she didn’t handle it well either. I decided to tell my brother who was a teenager, and he was the only one who really tried to understand me.

After that I came to know a world that I never knew existed. I had new friends that were fine with my sexuality, and I finally found a man that showed me what it meant to be in a gay relationship. It didn’t last long, but it made me grow up and helped prepare me for who is now the love of my life - Alexandre.

He taught me about pride and not being afraid of who you are. Today, my mom sees me with new eyes, as someone who's also formed a family. And my sister and brother are closer to me than ever before. It wasn’t easy, but it was definitely worth it.

Today, I'm 34 and I do not wish or want to be anything but GAY! Through everything I've built, the friends I have and ones I've lost, and all the obstacles I've moved out of my way, it made me a better man.

Thus, I must tell you: it gets better! MUCH BETTER!!!

Wanderson's first, famous-person same sex crush:
Richard Chamberlain (in "The Thorn Birds")

9 comments:

Dan said...

I'm glad you found yourself!
Everybody have to know that all gets better!
hugs!
:)

Dêco said...

Cuz there's a light in u that shines brightly. i'm so glad 4 u.

Glauber Weder said...

ei, parabêns e felicidades. bom ver nós, brasileiros, por aqui. abraços

Kathryn Thomas said...

That was one of the loveliest (and saddest) stories on the entire site; I'm so sorry you had to go through all the crap but how wonderful that your life is so on track now. Thanks for putting your story out there!

Edu said...

I've read this before in Portuguese and I'm glad you shared it with the world. You have a beautiful story and it keeps getting better and better, right? We love you, Wan-Wan!

Greg said...

Sorry you had to go through that. Me too. My parents still do not talk about it and I am 41. I just do now know how to handle the situation. I guess I will just sit it out.

Anonymous said...

Wanderson, is that a very common name in Brazil? My parents met a young boy named Wanderson when they went on a Methodist church-building trip. Mom showed me a picture, and in addition to the name, he looked like you.

Thiago Lasco (Introspective) said...

Thanks for sharing this, buddy! These stories are all so similar, yet every single one manages to touch me! I'm glad you've broken through it and broke free! :)

melo said...

babe, you make me want and work hard to be a better man.
i know you had to put up with a lot of shit in your life and hopefully i was able to help you lay down such burden and make a better life.
i love you and will always be there for you no matter what.

note: yes, i'm his husband!