Wednesday, January 16, 2013

Backstory: 2002-2006 - The guy edition

Last night, I told you about Christa, probably the only girl I've ever loved.  Even then, I'm hesitant to use the L-word because my end of it was totally unrequited, and I don't think unrequited love is love. Then again, I'm borderline robotic in the way I consider others' emotions, so I'm probably wrong about that.

Anyway, just going off of last night's post, you might think that homosexuality was an acquired trait for me.  Based on what I said then, I loved a girl in high school and dated girls in high school and kissed girls in high school, so surely, the homosexuality must have just been a temptation I gave into later in life, right?

Oh, how wrong you are...

Even in the midst of the delightfully pure passion I had for Christa, I had my dream harem of men running through my mind.  I'd go from imagining marrying Christa in the Salt Lake Temple to thinking about my best friend telling me he was gay and kissing me in about five minutes' time.  Except for my freshman year, which was about as sexless as you'd expect from a good Mormon, each year of high school will forever be associated with the "guy of the year," that friend that I burned in my lust after.

Mr. Sophomore was a few years older than me, but he's not terribly important for the purposes of my backstory.  He was nice and I thought the sun shined out his ass. Same old story.

It's Mr. Junior that we'll concern ourselves with here. He was my age. We'd known each other since 7th grade, but we weren't really friends in any meaningful sense.  One night, a mutual friend invited us and a bunch of other kids over to his house, but no one showed up but me and this other kid.  At the end of the very short party, Mr. Junior needed a ride home and since I had a car, I obliged.  As we endured the awkward drive home, we conversed about the end of school and our classes next semester. We found out that we'd be in the same AP history course and decided to meet once before school started to go over the syllabus together once he got back from his end-of-the-summer trip to Texas. Before I got to my house after dropping him off, he'd already MySpaced me (back when MySpace was cool, amirite?).

So while he was in Texas, we communicated a little and then, for whatever reason, once he got back, we saw each other every single day. We discovered that we sounded great together when we sang, so we auditioned for a few talent shows at the beginning of the year, so there was that.  Then there was AP history, which took up the lion's share of our schoolwork. We went from being near-strangers to spending-every-day-with-each-other best friends in about three weeks.  He was the yin to my yang, a supportive, exceptional best friend that I'd been looking for for a long time, and everything in my world was perfect. Hell, people sometimes even spread rumors about us that we were gay together, and that was just fine with me.

But then, something changed in our relationship.  He stayed the same, but somehow it wasn't enough for me.  Every time he hung out with someone else, I got jealous. Every time he invited someone else to hang out with us, I got offended that I wasn't enough.  I suffered silently for a long, long time in this way, knowing that he had every right to other friends and I didn't deserve 100% of his time.

I remember one night in particular.  I showed up to a house party of some friends I didn't really know well.  I walked into the basement, said hello to my friend and sat next to him. He said hello back and then turned back to the conversation he'd been having with the person on his other side.  For whatever reason, this was the breaking point for me. I got up, ostensibly to get a soda from the cooler upstairs, and instead walked out the door and to my truck.  I got in and turned the ignition.  The loud roar from my straight pipes was heard throughout the house, including by my friend.  He immediately called me and asked where I was going and I told him, "Home.  I feel like crap," and hung up the phone.  He texted a few times wanting to know if I was okay, each one of which I ignored.

I drove aimlessly for a few hours, burning gasoline as only a high school student who gets his money from Daddy can. After about an hour, the tears started coming as I wondered aloud why I wasn't enough for this friend.  In my mind, our world would consist of me and him and no one else, and I didn't understand how something that felt so natural emotionally was so contrary logically.  I cried and cried until I had to pull over in a parking lot near my house because I could no longer see through the tears. I got another text from my friend at this point that said, "I wish I could help you."

All of a sudden, I stopped crying.  In an instant, the thought popped into my head.

"Oh my God, I'm gay." [I hesitated writing that, because I hate taking God's name in vain, but that's how it happened]

Of course! It all made so much sense.  Why else had I wanted those guy friends to confess their love for me? Why else had I wanted my best friend to tell me that I was enough for him? Why else had my attraction to Christa never amounted to much more than vanilla fantasies about white picket fences and GMC Suburbans full of kids?  Why else had every thought I had about my guy friends been somehow more enticing, more forbidden, than those of my girlfriends? And why had those rumors been somehow so satisfying?

That school year ended incredibly poorly. Fast forward a few months and my friend and I had a bitter, bitter fallout, due in large part to my neediness and unwillingness to allow him his freedom, but also due in part to his sheer ass-hattery. As they say, water under the bridge, but in the moment, I simultaneously hated him and loved him with every fiber of my being.

But going into the summer of 2006, I had a new perspective on life. Unexpectedly, I transformed from this timid, confused kid to this timid, terrified kid.  I had uncovered the answer to about a zillion questions I had about myself, but in the process, I found a zillion more questions needing answering.

1 comment:

Be nice, mmmmkay? I allow anonymous comments, but not anonymous (or even attributed) douchebaggery. The Gay Mormon Pioneer's tolerance for hate and venom are incredibly low, but his love of communication and debate are high, so have an opinion, but be kind and gentle when you share it.

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