I remember thinking when I was 25 that the most important thing was just to live life – to travel, to see different things, to experience life ‘in the raw’, to have great loves, read sublime literature, to learn new things, to have memories… My greatest fear was to reach the age of 80 and think: ‘Oh my God, I haven’t actually ‘lived’.
Well, nearly a quarter of a century later, I continue to believe that. I still really feel that it is important to keep an open mind, to look ahead, to seek the next adventure, to continue learning, and to keep loving. And.. to remember that with a positive frame of mind, some exciting and interesting people might just dance into our lives every now an then… and then they might just dance out, but that’s life! The gay community in this day and age has evolved so much compared to my time, and to certain extent, I find it hard to accept some of the lifestyle elements in which many gay men are practising widely – casual hook ups, NSA, unsafe sex, kinky sex, f buddies etc.
I acknowledge that sex is important and it’s one of our basic needs, but I still believe that sex is an important part of love and I don’t think that these two can be separated. Love creates happiness and contentment, whilst hatred creates resentment and sickness.
When I was young, I didn’t know what to do when I came across guys whom I found attractive and attracted to. I struggled within and I started punishing myself for liking guys and not girls. I felt so intimidated and I feared that the society would judge me as ‘abnormal’ and ‘sicked’. I had to keep all my fears and worries in my head and I have no where to release them. Back in those days, obviously, we didn’t have the technology we have today; hence, the only way to deal with those issues was to do a lot of self-talk and self-questioning. It was hard…
Another thing that I don’t find comfortable is the phrase ‘just friends’. I have seen and heard about this a lot in the gay community, particularly on gay dating apps or websites. It implies that friendship is the ‘next level down’ from romantic love, which I refute (they are two different loves). In modern society, it seems that all there is left to fall in love with ‘the one’ and to settle down, live happily ever after, just like in the fairy tales. But how often does it work out that way?
Perhaps, we should consider a wider definition of ‘love’, to apply it more generally to our lives, whether to lovers, to friends or even to the basic tasks and objects of our daily lives. You could call it passion. Surely, we are nothing without passion?
My hope is that the gay community could come closer together and be more gentle with each other rather than attacking each other due to jealousy or the need to be different from others. We should be supporting each other and ‘acceptance’ is what make the world a better place to live.