Rick, age 4
North Hollywood, CA (1967)
A couple months ago, I was rummaging through old photo albums at my father's house, and my heart stopped when I saw this pic of me as a small child. It really took my breath away, because it confirmed for me just how early in my life, that my path was set. I was not to be like other boys. Thank God!
I seemed to attract other effeminate boys as friends at school. I was always being taunted, beat up, chased, and teased all through school.
My mother finally allowed me to switch to a small church school mid-year in 8th grade, because I was so miserable at my public school.
It was during high school that I realized what was different about me. I knew I was gay, and it scared the hell out of me.
But how could I be gay? I was raised a Baptist???
Things began to fall into place in my life in my early 20's. I met John, my partner of 24 years, in 1987. We have a wonderful life together, and I have a wonderful and supportive family.
"Born This Way Blog" gives me such a strong feeling of belonging. What a great way to show young "different" people just how many of us have paths to follow that seem so different - yet are actually so alike.