Los Angeles, California (1968)
Every summer my parents would take our family on a camping trip to various places in California by a lake or river. My dad did his best to teach me and my brothers one of his favorite past times - fishing. Where my brothers excelled at this, all I ever wanted to do was goof off and practice casting the reel.
This would inevitably cause my dad to send me away to play with my sisters, which was fine with me. Of course when it came time to be posing the camera,
I was always a willing participant!
My childhood was basically a happy one. Although, school was difficult at times and I did my best to stay invisible to stave off the inevitable bullies.
I had a large loving family that provided a happy oasis, and my siblings were all welcoming to how I chose to express my identity. In fact, my older sisters often took pleasure in dressing me up in various "costumes" from their closet for photo opportunities. Again, I was a willing participant.
Coming out to my siblings was pretty much a non issue. I remember calling to tell them, and the response was always the same: 'Oh, I know' followed by 'I love you.' I just wanted to get it out in the open so we didn't have to pretend anymore.
I never had the nerve to formally come out to my parents, but eventually it was just how it was. As a kid I endured 'faggot' jokes at the dinner table from my dad. But as we both matured, he couldn't have been more loving or supportive of me.
My mother was pure love at heart, but sometimes hid behind the world of denial. I remember visiting her once with my sister and talking about love and pining for when we'd each have a relationship. My mom's response to my sister was not to worry, it will come. But to me, she said that I didn't need that.
Thankfully, as we both matured, knowledge led to her acceptance.
Click - "Born This Way: Real Stories of Growing Up Gay" book
Click - "My First Gay Crush Blog"