January 21, 2015


Bill, age 3
Brooklyn, New York (1963)

This picture should have given my family some clue! This Norwegian boy on the left was a childhood friend, and I have a look on my face like, “Look! I got one!”

As a kid, I loved TV shows that featured boys around my age, like Eddie Munster and Will Robinson on "Lost In Space."

I also remember watching the original "Mickey Mouse Club" on TV. While most other boys were crushing on Annette Funicello, I was crushing on Cubby!

If anyone had asked me as early as age four who I wanted to marry when I grew up, I would have said that I wanted to marry a man. It just seemed natural.

But elementary school was a very difficult time for me.

I got bullied and beat up a lot, but I didn’t really know why;
I just thought that’s how school was.

By junior high, kids had apparently picked up on me being gay, because the bullying definitely took on a homophobic aspect. Of course, self-preservation caused me to deny it, and I had girlfriends all through high school. Probably because I was easy to talk to?!

After high school, I went through a very difficult time in a very homophobic church. After what could only be described as spiritual and emotional torture,
I left. Within a year in 1980, I was instrumental in founding the world’s first LGBT-affirming Apostolic Pentecostal church.

Most of my family took my coming out very well.

To celebrate, my aunt Lois called a friend of hers, and together they “raided” a gay bar in Asbury Park, New Jersey, where Lois played matchmaker for the guys inside, deciding who looked good with whom!

Presently, there are many positive LGBT role models, and I hope LGBT kids will look to them for encouragement and affirmation.

Today, I'm a 55 year old man, happily partnered with another 55 year old man. As I look back at my childhood - and especially this picture - it makes me smile.

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

1 comment:

Jay M. said...

Wow! Instant identification! So cool. I think I knew about 6 or 7 years old.

All the rest, yup, count me in.

Peace <3