My story is lengthy and made lengthier by my thoughts. I think I started realising I was gay when I was ten going on 11. We live very close to the sea and we used to go to the beach often. I started to realise that I felt ever increasing urges to look at boys. At first I put this down to a mere scientific interest in anatomy and art-worthy beauty (I kind of set aside the fact I liked neither otherwise and I only looked at girls). Looking back now, I realise that I liked other boys in ways which were not yet sexual as early as when I was 8.
Then I went to a catholic secondary school (so between 11 and 15 years of age) and learnt that I was doomed to go to hell, that ‘gay’ was just a bad insult and that, quite frankly, it would be best for everyone if I were just dead rather than gay. Nice times. I still get very angry when I think back to those years. When I was 13, I decided I and the rest of society would necessarily have to be in a constant state of undeclared war, that I was an unacceptable mistake doomed to eternal torment either in this life or the next, and I obviously chose to be sad in this life. I planned to even marry a woman later on in life and vowed I would seek to make her and my children happy, so that they would not need to share my sadness.
A couple of years later, our parliament started to discuss passing a civil union bill that would provide legal protection to homosexual couples. The school staff were practically on the war-path against it, but the student body was not. Practically all my classmates were vehemently in favour of the bill, and no one declared himself against. That gave me hope.
When I finally left the Catholic school I came out, by mistake, to my two now atheist bestfriends and they were beyond supportive. Things started to get gradually better, no thanks to the Catholic church that was still spewing vitriol about me at any given chance. But I still couldn’t bring myself to come out to my Catholic family.
Eventually my mother half-dragged me out of the closet but was very supportive, as was my sister, whom I told later on while we were waiting for a musical to start in a London theater (postcard homosexual, I know). It took me a while longer to tell my father, who, contrary to everything I had hitherto believed, took it rather well. He is still against gay marriage and adoption, but I can respect that, just as he respects that I am in favour of them.
Things have been getting better, but now my mother plans on telling the extending family. Unlike my parents, the rest of the family is a bible-thumping, crusading army gone wild. I don’t mind if they hate me, refuse to speak to me, call me names, make my life hell. I honestly don’t. My greatest fear is that they will cut contact with my parents, and I want more than anything for them NOT to suffer because of me.
At the same time, I can’t understand why God would hate me so much. I don’t think I am evil. I try to show love and compassion to all those around me, I have never sought to do harm to anyone directly or through intrigue. All I want is to live and love, and love truly. In my case, it seems like the person I will come to love most and above all will be a man and I can’t see what is so fundamentally wrong with that. I mean, apparently I can’t even have a no-sex loving relationship with another guy without implicitly signing an eternal contract with Lucifer downstairs. And that makes me angry. Because I sometimes feel like my life would be much better without God, and I’m not sure I want that either.
I know this was all a bit too long. But I needed to get it out somewhere and this place seemed as good as any.