June 28, 2011


Donald, age 11
Omaha, Nebraska (1981)

Only a young gay boy could strike a pose with a 5-pound carp! And this photo sums up my childhood. I enjoyed being outside playing in the dirt, climbing trees, fishing, and doing archery. No girly stuff. This, despite having two older sisters who dressed me up in pigtails and paraded me around the neighborhood once. I just consider myself an unwilling participant that day.

I always felt "different" as I was an introvert, and not into sports.

And I didn't feel comfortable around my peer group.

My mom always told me that I was just "3 steps ahead" of my friends, so I came to believe my "differentness" was simply being more advanced than my peers.

My first (and only) gay experience was with my childhood friend, when I was about 11.

I was over at his house and he "accidentally" touched me - and I "accidentally" touched him right back. It was awesome!

We did this off and on for a few years, until we drifted apart.

I held on to those memories but I never dared to repeat the experience, because of the shame and guilt. The word "gay" never entered into my vocabulary until about 7-years ago, when I actually figured out that I was gay. This, after being married for 7 years and having 2 absolutely wonderful sons.

Because I never identified as gay, I had a relatively normal childhood.
In fact, I've only been called "freak" and "offensive" to my face, by my own wife!

I'm out to both our immediate families. My family is just fine with me, though we never actually talk about it. I sometimes wonder:

Did my mom know all along?

I have a lot of sorting out to do, and I am fearful yet hopeful for my uncertain future. I look at my photo now and just wish that I could be that naïve boy again. I wasn't afraid back then.

So my advice to the youth of today is:
One of the greatest fears, is the fear of being yourself. So get over that fear!

Click here - "Born This Way: Real Stories of Growing Up Gay" book
Click here - "My First Gay Crush Blog"
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RayMan said...

With the exception of being married with children, your life has been generally in "lock step" with mine. We're in good company; Kate Pearson {the B52's} is also an LIL {Late-In-Life} homosexual. I came out to myself when I was thirty four; and for me, that was half the battle.

Anonymous said...

As the son of a gay father, who came out to us at age 42, I can tell you the best thing to do is start talking about it and talk about it honestly with your family. Its the first step in truly being honest with yourself and those you love. I wish you all the best in your new journey.

Unknown said...

So refreshing reading these entries.

Anonymous said...

So glad I found this blog. Even though I'm not gay, it's still inspiring. And the pictures are adorable. Especially this one.
Great post.


rossandconnierockon! said...

Good for you! Not only do I love your post but the comments are just as refreshing. Thank you everyone!

Unknown said...

Keep doing what's best for you man. I hate some people can't be tolerant.

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the island guy said...

Great advice at the end there sir!