Dhanny, age 3
Caracas, Venezuela (1980)
When I was a child, I was like "the toy" in the house, because I'm the youngest of 4 children. I was a bit spoiled, and my one sister even walked the whole city, just to buy me an E.T. doll with lights on the finger and heart.
My childhood was as nice as possible, but I knew I was "different" as early as kindergarten. My teacher called my mom to tell her that I always held hands with another boy, and said it was "abnormal behavior." So the teacher put us in different classrooms. And I think this was the first time that I was "punished" because of my "natural selection" - haha!
I loved playing baseball, swimming, and riding my bike like most kids. But there was always something inside me that made me more soft. I excelled in art, drawing and acting. But when it came to baseball or football, I was the worst!
In high school, I even had a girlfriend! But with pressure about having sex, we had no choice but to break up and just be friends. She was actually a lesbian, and 10 years later we kissed, just to piss off our old friends.
I chose this picture, because it shows me trying to steal some grapes. And my family thought, "How cute! Click the camera!" But when it came to my sexuality, that was a subject not talked about in my house.
But now, I think they feel so natural in my life. My nephew and niece come to my home, and they love my partner. I have been blessed with my family, and I don't feel shame about anything.
I worry about today's kids, who still suffer hardship because of their sexuality.
But we are not aliens. And there is nothing wrong with us, or you.
As long as you respect yourself, you can be respected back. There is a bright future ahead, and it gets better every day. But the most important person we need to love, is ourselves.
Dhanny's first, famous-person same sex crush:
Mark-Paul Gosselaar (Zack Morris on "Saved By The Bell")I watched just to see 'the cute blond guy,' desperate to be his Kelly!