Archive for the ‘LGBT’ Category

Oh Brother..

Posted: April 29, 2014 in Brother, family, Gay, LGBT, loneliness, Uncategorized
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“Write ‘fuck‘ down on this piece of paper or I’ll tell Dad you said ‘fuck’!”

I stamped my feet a little and groaned beneath the weight of the injustice.

“But why, Phil? Why do you have to be so meeeeeaan?”

“Because you’re a little shit that Mum and Dad bought from Oxfam, you were one of those fat Ethiopians before they saved you, that’s why no one loves you as much as me..”

“No I wasn’t! No I Waa..”

“Do it you poofta!”

Tears begin to trickle down my face as I reluctantly ‘fuck’ed the piece of paper taken from the inside of a Cadbury’s Milk Tray box. It was deep purple, I was deep red.

“Daaaaad! Daaaaad! Peter wrote ‘Fuck‘ on this piece of paper!”

Dad was not best pleased and reacted accordingly. A soap in the mouth is like two up the arsehole, believe me.

I haven’t seen my brother for nearly two years, and it still isn’t long enough. I’m not sure how long it will be before I forgive him, but I feel like there is nothing underneath, I think I am most scared that I will discard him forever, God knows I have my reasons.

No one can ever tell you to cut a family member out of your life, you have to do that for yourself. I waited for two years for someone, anyone to give me permission to ditch him, in the end of course only I could allow myself to do the unthinkable.

I haven’t cut him off completely, just indefinitely. For as long as I need. This is not how I imagined my family relations would end-up but as I have always said: relatives are relative after all, right?

It would be much easier if I didn’t live in the same city as my family, most people get to piss-off and only return for booze fueled events, like the virgin birth celebration, or our Lord’s agonising death, softened by chocolate. Easter eggs really aren’t what they used to be though are they?

I wish I felt for my family what I see on TV but life is not like that; we are duped in to depression and feelings of inadequacy by the world’s biggest fuck-ups: Actors. Family is not anything by default, it’s what we put in to it, what we decide.

This is a letter that I never sent to my brother, but it is what I would say to him if there were no consequences, if I could be sure I would never regret it, but we can never know how we may feel in the future. For now I have said nothing, but this is about as honest as it gets. It’s not polished, it is what it is.

Hello Phil,

How are you?

I don’t feel well enough to write this but maybe I never will, I’m currently going cold turkey off all meds, drugs, even nicotine and caffeine. It’s tough, but it’s time to get clean and build a life again. 

 A very close ‘friend’ died of an OD not so long ago which sent me back in to a very bad place, just as I was getting much better. In a strange way it was for the best, I wasn’t far away from that not so long ago and I was still attached to him emotionally, and possibly always would have been. Still it’s harsh when there are no words for the kind of relationships I have, no legitimate mourning or recognition.

It’s been a fucking tough couple of years, don’t tell me it has been for you too, because it hasn’t, not in this way, only my life is this way, conversely yours is tough in ways I can’t imagine. The difference is in choice or lack thereof.

The main reason I haven’t been in touch with you is because you have upset me, deeply, not just over the past couple of years, but also in the vivid memories of gay jokes across the dining room table year after year, visit after visit, when you blatantly knew I was gay. Jokes and jokes. Always a fucking joke to you. Why didn’t you ever just ask me for fuck sake? Why not make it easy for me to come out to you? Because you thought I was a private person?

I am not a private person and never was, you just never took the time to see me for who I was past the age of 16. I was scared and alone, deeply alone in the dark for years, with a blind Christian family who are all passive-aggressive head-buriers.

I just wonder sometimes why no one thought to make it easier on me, why no one reached out to me, always the emphasis was on me to reach out to the family. But I was so alone.

I’m not angry, just tired and sad.

Before I came out to Mum and Dad you were all supportive until you found out that they were ‘OK’ with it – I remember clearly your tone dropping as I told you how ‘well’ it had gone. Why was that? I know what I heard in your voice, I’m sure of it.

There was no “Excellent that’s great news Pete!”. No enthusiasm or happiness, you seemed perturbed, bemused, annoyed even. No. There was only “Oh right…” then silence for a little while. Oh right? Fuck you. It was not ‘OK’ with them, it was not easy. It took some serious work to fix things with them, it’s still on-going. Relationships take work, and honesty. I don’t feel I have any of that from you.

Then you were all supportive when I had my (3rd) breakdown telling me I could come to you for support, I was so grateful and relived, but as soon as you found out that Dad helped me financially, what did you do Phil? Couldn’t you be pleased, even relived for me because I wouldn’t be out on the street? No, you thought it was the right time to write yet another letter about how badly you had been treated as a child. How they never supported you financially! How the fuck is that supposed to make me feel? You went SILENT for weeks and I had no idea why!

Were you jealous of my terrible life? Did you suffer so badly? Jealous that you didn’t get what your two younger siblings got? What we got was fucked-up Phil, properly. Take it from me, by all means. This is why I never told you, I never felt I could trust you and although I did everything to prove myself wrong it turns out I was right all along.

I have and would never be jealous of Anna, she is my little sister and I only want the best for her, the very best. I could only ever be pleased for her. But you? Why do you tell her you weigh the same as her and not encourage her instead? Why are you jealous of us Phil? GROW UP MATE!

When have you ever supported any of us? You’re supposed to be the eldest but you act like the youngest. Always glad to take but rarely there to give. Sometimes Susie looks like jealousy personified. Did you learn it from them? Did you catch Hopkinsitis? 

You have the ‘perfect’ life Phil!. The life denied to both me and Anna so far. A house, a wife and kids, what more do you want? A sexual identity crisis and three fucking breakdowns? Have them, gladly, but how dare you be jealous of my life-long struggle? It’s almost unforgivable. Almost.

How could you be jealous of this shit Phil? How can you use my life as a commodity, as some kind of emotive currency? You and your wife need to grow up. Some of us have been forced to. You’re just kids raising kids.

How about counting your blessings? All we get is moan moan moan from you and Susie.

“Poor us, we’re so poor, but here’s our new fish collection, extension, massive TV”.

Poor my arse, that’s what happens when you have SIX children. Six?? What’s wrong with you?! Sorry Phil, but really? You both act as if they just happen some how, but you chose to have them, or at least she did, then you want sympathy? With each new one came more and more pressure..for everyone.

You chose your life Phil, to have kids and marry early, no one forced you to, you have security and a family of your own, what more do you want? You cause so many problems and upset so many people thinking you are the one who is hard-done-by. Take some fucking responsibility and ownership for your life-choices. I had NO choice in mine.

The way you two treat Mum and Dad is disgusting. DISGUSTING! I’m sick of it, and I’m sick of their cowardice too in not confronting you both over it, because of the constant emotional blackmail. Phil – you need them a hell of a lot more than they need you so please show them the respect they deserve or be ready for the consequences. You and your wife show so little gratitude to them especially Susie. You need them. Show them some love, if she can’t do it for real then she can fucking well fake it like we all do with her family.

Mum and Dad go through hell for your family. How many years will you resent them for? What kind of example is that to anyone? If I can let go then you certainly can, I would urge you to for your sake more than theirs, don’t let it eat you up inside anymore.

Every time I hear you call that other woman <his Mother-in-law> ‘Mum’ it makes my skin crawl. Isn’t that the same one who didn’t want you to be with her daughter? The racist? You weren’t good enough were you? Then you become their lacky? You should have taken their name when you got married if they are so perfect, and bleached your skin whilst you were at it.

Shameful. You make me feel sad and ashamed when I see the way you are with them, then compare it to how you are with your own parents who help you as much as they can. They may not be perfect, but they are yours and they love you, if only you’d let them. Are the Hopkins that great? No mate.

They are NOT great Phil. They are fucking vile and I bitterly resent every second I have ever had to spend with any of them because of you. Ergh the thought of those awful family events makes me shudder. I can’t stand them, nor can any of us because we are better and we know better, we just stay quiet to appease you and your wife’s moods. I tolerated it while I could, but no more. They represent everything that is wrong with this country, middle-class vacuousness. Pride and Ego. Competition and jealousy. Gag. No more.

I will never attend another event of theirs, ever. That’s your family, not mine, I have the superior model, let them suck on that while they compare cars.

I don’t know where we go from here, I have no ability to humour or bullshit anymore, I’m not sure I ever will again, I think you only get a certain amount of pretense in a lifetime and mine was all used up in the closet.

I do love you. I did look up to you. Did you ever love me?

That’s the point that I decided I would not send it.

He’s my brother..I love him, I have no intention of causing him pain but I can’t let him hurt me anymore either. I must protect myself from those who are too mindless to look out for me and not just their own interests, no matter how they relate to me. Blood may be thicker than water, but it tastes fucking vile.

Life is not ever what we are lead to believe it will be. It’s our own duty to be courageous, to see things for what they really are, not for what we are told they should be, even if it scares the shit out of us.

For now, just silence. Time will tell.

Desk jockey

Posted: April 25, 2014 in Bisexual, drugs, Gay, LGBT, office
Tags: , , , ,

desk jockyHe sits awkwardly at his desk, covertly eating his Simply Cheese  sandwich bought from the M&S by the station. His lunch tastes like his job title. Bland and misleading.

“There’s no fucking margarine or butter in this sandwich..can you fucking believe it?”

“It does say Simply Cheese though mate..”

He stares at his colleague blankly whilst imagining beating him to death with his keyboard, or maybe that weird blue plastic thing that he never used to store anything, or the stapler?

“I know that! But at home if I offer someone a sandwich I don’t ask them if they want lubricant or not, I take it as a given!”

“I guess..”

He takes another bite of despair, this time nearly choking on it; he coughs it up on to a manual he was given that morning to learn the latest piece of software that had of course been implemented, badly, at the worst possible time of year.

After cleaning the simple cheese off with his shirt-sleeve he notices a sentence that now appears to have enlarged due to the unforeseen dairy projection.

“To quit the program just press escape followed by #

Escape…then hash…? He thinks to himself. Escape, then hash! Interesting..

“I’d fucking love to escape then smoke all day, all the time, probably a nice Indica..some Charas would be exquisite.. “

“What are you talking about? didn’t you nearly just die from cheese?”

“I did, thanks for noticing. Don’t they say that near-death experiences can evoke sudden clarity?”

“Do they? What did you learn? That you’re bad at eating?”

“You’re a nob jockey. I’m off for a gypsy..”

“What the hell is a gypsy?”

“Gypsy’s kiss? Piss?”

“So you’re cockney now are you? I bet you’re really going for a J Arthur Rank”

“I went to the bank yesterday..” He smiles, then winks. He’s not quite sure why.

He saunters down to the men’s room, the one on the third floor that has the potential for possible cock-sightings, through the crack in the second cubicle door. It was time to put his wanking cap on while he thought about the magnitude of the possibility of an actual free life.

The door opens, a sure- footed man walks in, then past the cubicle, settling at the urinal that is best viewed from the box-seat. He didn’t recognise this one immediately; it was clear the man was not of faith nor State and that he had much potential for growth.  After a slightly drawn-out expulsion, with an end-shake that teased him in to hoping for more, he was once again alone.

“Could I really just..go? What’s stopping me?”

As he returns to his desk he thinks it prudent to make two lists to help him further decipher if the dream is at all viable. He knows he will favour his freedom but the process must take place nonetheless, it’s just what one does in such moments; he’d seen it on TV enough times to know it was the only way to make a decision of consequence.


1. No wankers telling me what to do all day.

2. Freedom to be a wanker at any time of day whilst playing GTA.

3. I could finally finish writing that TV series, or novel, or articles..

5. Maybe there would be time to actually find a boyfriend, and experience this so called “love” that’s all the rage amongst the gen-pop these days.

6. Do anything I want to do whenever I choose..


1. Financial struggle..

2. None.

He had a bit saved up, and God knows his debts made sure that his income was more or less swallowed up by ancient excess by the second week of the month ..maybe Bankruptcy!  Why not? No house, no car, just a bong and a PC aside from his collection of trainers and Japanese Manga-porn..

“Erm Peter? You’re 10 minutes late for the strategy meeting and Smale is about to fucking flip! Get your arse down there NOW Mr.!”

He looks up slowly. It’s Aisling of course, the overblown PA to the nuclear cunt himself .

He eyes her up and down slowly as a malevolent smirk spreads across his once affable face.

“Would you mind telling Steven to go fuck himself for me please Ling?”

She hated being called Ling, he knew it, her face screws-up like a dehydrated loofah as she turns an obscene shade of magenta.

“And while you’re at it Ling, would you mind shoving yourself up your own arse? That would be great, thanks love!”

She storms off instantly, the once invasive office suddenly deathly silent. He chuckles to himself, heart pounding, face beaming, cock hard.

“What the fuck did you just do??” His colleague gasps.

He says nothing as he walks over to the fridge, steals some butter from an unopened pack, he doesn’t care whose, slowly spreads it on his now not quite so simple sandwich then sits back down at his desk finally shoving the whole half in his mouth.

“Escape then hash..why did it take this long?”

“..And God said “Let there be drugs!” and there was drugs, and drugs was gooooood!”

JCDo you drink every night, or most? Twice a week? I’ll begin this post, sanctimonious drinker, by pointing out that you have a governmentally approved addiction, you’re no better nor worse than any other addict.

If you can’t go to a party, club or dining room without a glass then you’re the same as me, only my fix is un-taxable (in the UK at least) and springs-forth from the Earth; modern civilisation is based on it, it has never killed anyone directly, but for some sordid, cynical reason it’s illegal.

Lend me your beers for a moment so that I can make them illegal. How would you feel if booze was, quite rightfully by current legislation, outlawed? You can buy alcohol from more shops than you can buy milk and water these days.

“What you faackin lookin at?”

The drunk mockney slurred as he walked in to the lamp post, after taking a thoroughly unbalanced swing  at me.

“I wasn’t looking at you, I was looking through you…” I calmly explain.

“Faakin Paki…faaack owff..”

He tries for another punch but this time falls flat on his face. I slowly kneel down beside him.

“I’m Egyptian actually, good luck with your liver.” I whisper like snow.

Why is it that a substance that causes people to lose their dignity, endlessly repeat themselves then get in to fights is completely legal and socially acceptable, but one that makes you happy, inspired and sleepy isn’t? What kind of a society accepts that above all else? It baffles me.

Of all the drugs I have ever used alcohol is the worst, hands down, no contest. Do we really need to poison ourselves in to amnesia when there are far softer, more enjoyable ways to accomplish the task, without the vomit, violence and depression?

Rant over. The truth is I’m jealous, that’s all.

I wish I got from drink what I get from green, but it simply doesn’t come close. I get a hangover before I finish my first drink and then it makes me feel like I’m dying. Lucky bastards, able to stroll down the road to any shop to get your fix where many a diasporic Arab will gleefully sell you your poison; they won’t touch the stuff themselves of course, like any good dealer. Please don’t be offended by the ‘A’ word, I am one.

It’s not just substances though, they pale into insignificance when compared with addiction to love, to people, and in turn addiction to others is nothing compared with addiction to God. Holy fuck does religion get you good!

Jesus ran through my veins, changing my brain-chemistry, disabling logic and reason, clouding my judgement; I made very poor decisions as a Christian – no sex for example. My addiction to JC was from birth. I’m a Christ-baby. During my childhood, religion was fun and colourful, church was where my best friends were, where I socialsed. It was soft and friendly, warm and innocent, just like McDonald’s once seemed. Goddamn, I’d kill for a Big Mac right about now..and a Coke.

As I became an adult I  ditched the institution but desperately clung-on to the faith. I outgrew the need for a dealer and went straight to the source. Jesus kept me safe from reality, he loved me even in my filth, he made me need him, or at least it felt that way, I’d never known anything else.

I’d snort a line of Savior in the morning, gum some Christ at lunch, then mainline some Redeemer at night. Mmm the warm buzz of forgiveness and acceptance. There’s no high that comes close.

I was once a slave to Christ. I’ve been a slave to love and desire. I’ve been drug’s bitch. Be wary of the things you need most in life.

God, I miss Jesus sometimes. I have been clean of religion for 4 years, almost to the day. De-conversion was not an easy process, it still isn’t. If I had realised I could actually have been  gay and Christian, life might not have been so hard these past years.

Ultimately, I have no doubt my life will now be all the fuller and sweeter for my sobriety. On good days I love the freedom that our ambiguous existence gives us, on bad days the world makes no sense at all, not one bit. They have AA for alcoholics, where is GA for those desperately trying to ditch their God-habbit? Maybe I’ll start a group.

I choose a life that is fully mine. I dream of a day when I am beholden only to myself.

Liebster Award!

Posted: January 27, 2014 in award, Bisexual, Gay, LGBT, LGBTQ, Uncategorized
Tags: , , ,

LAWell, what a pleasant surprise!

The other day I was Liebster nominated by my new friend Adam – his blog is called In Search Of Adam I highly recommend anyone reading this check him out, he writes beautifully, humbly and honestly and I think I might love him. The way he talks about his journey through the extraordinary trials of his life is incredibly inspiring. I look forward to following him closely (not stalking this time I promise).

I also want to thank him because I was just about to say goodbye to this blog to just focus on writing offline, but I think I’ll stick around a while longer now.

So there are some rules which I must now follow:

The Rules of the Liebster Award

1.  Thank the person who nominated you and link to their blog.
2.  Answer the 10 questions given to you by the nominee before you.
3.  Nominate 10 of your favorite blogs with fewer than 200 followers and notify them of their nomination.
4.  Come up with 10 questions for your nominees to answer.

OK so rule one done (GO CHECK HIM OUT GUYS!), now for the questions..I have only found 5 new blogs to nominate so far, but I will add to the list over the next week or so.

1  If you could have any superpower what would it be?

Interesting. My inner pervert is drawn to invisibility, my inner bird to flying, but how could I pass-up the ability to read people’s minds? Then again telekinesis..this is hard..I guess regeneration would be a good one, like that cheerleader, but then I’d most likely end up locked in some fortress with the military performing tests on me, hourly, for eternity…fuck…

One power I already possess is that if I think about the big toe on my right foot it starts to dislocate! I am yet to find a use for such a burdenous power: with great toe comes great responsibility.

2. If you could kiss/make out with one celebrity, who would it be?

Is the Queen a celebrity? I know I am gay as Tom Cruise, but still, you would, wouldn’t you? (if Tom Cruise or his cult-captors are reading this – I’m joking of course!). I have had an undying crush on Russell Tovey for years, which is unlike me as he is actually gay! That rugby player that was on Strictly Come Dancing recently wouldn’t get kicked out of bed either..

3. What song should be your life’s anthem?

Hmm. Definitely ‘Go Do’ by Jonsi. I dare you not be invigorated and inspired by it.

4. What is the best gift you ever received?

Probably the Jabba the Hutt toy set from Star Wars when I was about 6 or 7. I got so excited I puked. He had a little monkey friend, it was detachable, and a torture pit. Amazing.

5. What is your dream job?

To write whilst living on my own hemp farm and animal sanctuary with a community attached to it, self sufficient (with nature’s help of course!), off the grid, free and happy. Whatever in life brings happiness, love and freedom is the right thing to do. You simply can’t put a price on freedom.

6. What do you miss the most about being a kid?

I miss the ability to find wonder in the world effortlessly, soberly, pure deviant innocence. I miss the unhindered belief in magic and unaffected personality I once must have had. I miss getting so tired from running round all day that I couldn’t keep my eyes open, Dad carrying me upstairs, my head on his shoulder, back when I was his little boy. I miss finding value in the smallest of things and beauty in the strangest of places. I miss life before society forced me to choose a box that turned out to be a closet.

7. What is the last movie or TV show that made you cry?

At the moment anything where two people love each other, or someone comes-out, literally anything, even Eastenders. I cried watching Amelie the other day because I would love life to be that colourful and for romance to feel that playful and real.  The last film that actually made me sob was Brokeback Mountain. That film changed my life, it was the very first time I had seen my actual story on-screen, it was the first movie that I identified with as a man, a gay man. It was devastating, a horrific vision of my future if I didn’t begin to accept myself. The journey was long, and is indeed on-going!

8. What was an experience that made you a stronger person?

I have spoken a lot about coming-out so I will choose something else. Moving to Japan for a year could perhaps be a good example, it certainly changed me forever and broadened all of my horizons. I think though I will go with quitting the corporate world for good so that I could write, make films, do nothing, have a breakdown, lose my faith, develop an anxiety disorder then come out the other side, slowly but surely. If I hadn’t taken the plunge, and it was only at the point that it was literally life or death, I would never have had the time to breakdown completely. Sometimes everything must go in order to see what is really there.

9. What is a pet peeve that you can not stand?

I really can’t stand breadcrumbs, especially from fresh, crusty bread, all over the work-top. I’ll happily clean up cat vomit, clogged-up sinks and filthy toilets, but breadcrumbs? I just can’t stand the bastards.

10. What is your favorite day of the year and why?

Valentines day. I used to hate valentines day due to my perpetual, terminal solitude and loneliness. I could barely make myself get out of bed on that particular day, the horror and weight of all the love in the world and my inability to scrounge even a line of it. February 14th 2011 all that changed. I decided that I didn’t need anyone else in order to celebrate love. I could be my own Princess.

“What do you want to do today?” I asked myself lovingly.

“I want to smoke weed, eat the worst things and watch the Simpsons..” I coyly replied.

“Sounds perfect, sweetheart” I beamed.

I had the best day with myself. No one knows how to please me like I do. No one can truly love me until I love myself. Every Valentines day I renew my vows, to myself, then treat myself like a Princess, finally taking myself by the hand to bed. I can’t wait!

The blogs I will nominate are:


Be Your Own Hero

All these motherfucking feelings

Till He Comes Along

dark horse

And now for my questions:

1. What are you most scared of?

2. What do you like most about yourself?

3. What is your earliest memory?

4. Will you tell me a secret?

5. If you could transport yourself to any point in history when would it be and who would you be?

6. How similar are you now to who you were as a child?

7. Who do you most admire in the world and why?

8. Do you think there is anything out there? Aliens..God..?

9. What new skill/ability would you like to learn?

10. If you could be instantly fluent in any language which would it be and why?


Originally posted in April 2012.

I think each coming out story is as unique as the individual, aside from reaching the essential understandings – we all deserve to be free, equal human beings, we all deserve to love and be loved by whomever we choose, free from judgement from ourselves and others. The fact that we even have to discuss this and be ‘accepted’ is of course one of this life’s cruel absurdities but that’s a whole other issue.

The most interesting part of a coming out story for me is the point that the decision is made and the reason behind it. My final step was inspired by a documentary, a very simple one, it was called ‘The world’s worst place to be Gay':

It’s not the best film in the world, and it had been shown on what I thought at the time was the worst TV channel on the planet, but it was the trigger I needed. I understood that there were people in this world who were  being persecuted and even killed for being gay, in this case by ‘Christians’. I had to do something about it, I knew that I could do something, I need to do something… It’s not that I hadn’t realised this before, it’s just that I hadn’t identified with it, but now as a gay man I felt their fear and pain and it was unbearable. It was a good enough reason. The thought of my parent’s potential grief was overshadowed by the need to do something for those who didn’t have the luxury of the choices I was taking so long to even make. Scott Mills set me free in a way.

As soon as I had made the decision it struck me as being incredibly warped that it had taken the plight of others to realise my own need for liberation. I had never even for a second thought that I deserved such a thing or saw it as a possibility. My struggles in this area defined me as a person, it was who I was…who would I be once fully out the closet? I looked at my reflection for some clues but couldn’t see beyond the tired eyes and puffy cheeks.

It was decided, I was really going to do this. I needed to set a date. It was October so I decided that we would have one more peaceful Christmas and that I would do it in the New year..maybe tell the brother and sister beforehand..not too beforehand though as don’t want it used as ammunition…I decided on 20th January 2012. It may well be the last year of human existence, so why the hell not?

I began to plan, I had a dream that I could find a way of dealing with my parents personal feelings and not their religious beliefs. I’d need to go back to my prison manual…Christians are obsessed with sex, the Bible isn’t so much when you actually know it. It was easy: God is love. Jesus didn’t say a word on the matter. Only anal sex is an abomination. Abomination means ‘against tradition’. Mixing fabrics is an abomination as is divorce, eating rabbits, eating river fish…the list goes on of course. The only thing that would change would be that I wouldn’t be lying to them anymore, they had always taught me to tell the truth.

The reason it was so important to attend to the religious matters so thoroughly was that my Dad was a Baptist Minister, and my Mum the devoted wife. I didn’t know how this was going to go, both my parents are also Egyptian and the mixture of blind faith and Arab passion can be quite a heady one. At best I imagined my Mum screaming, pulling her hair out and puking in my face whilst my dad prepared me for burning. I really didn’t know what to expect, I just knew how I needed to feel, I had to have compassion for them and compassion for myself. It was hard because I hated everything and everyone involved with the situation at that point.

I wouldn’t recommend anyone set a date too far ahead for these events, it nearly killed me. Time passed, very slowly, every time I saw my family and they pissed me off it was nearly spat in their faces. I knew I wanted to tell my siblings first but I also didn’t want to pressure myself, so I told myself the right moments would present themselves, which they did.

My sister has had her own struggles, severely bullied at school and then thrown out because they couldn’t deal with the situation. She struggled with my Mum as girls do, Dad spoiled her to make up for early mistakes. The usual. We were tidying her room one afternoon and she started crying to me about how hard life had been for her and that no one understood how it felt. I knew it was the right moment, I suppressed a gag and went for it.

“Life hasn’t been easy for me either you know..”

“Yes it has, look at all the places you’ve been and things you’ve done, anyway you’re stronger than me..”

“I’m Gay. I’m telling Mum and Dad on the 20th January..and I’m shitting it”

We talked for about 2 hours, she asked me if she could meet my boyfriend, I explained that he hadn’t reached my consciousness yet, she understood. Part of me felt relieved and part of me felt disgusted, it was the strangest feeling. I had set in motion a series of unstoppable events and my unconscious knew it.

My sister was taken by surprise which I didn’t expect. She told me that she had never considered it as I didn’t seem typically gay, I explained that there are just people in this world, we all act differently and it has no relation to where we stick our bits. She didn’t want to think about my bits, and I didn’t want that either. We laughed, hugged and she forgot about her problems for a little while. It felt good but I also felt naked.

My brain began to feel weird, like it was in a panic and angry with me. I was doing something that I thought I would never do, I had surprised myself and part of my mind was desperately fighting it.

Part 2.

It was now late November and it was time to tell my older brother. He had been my hero until I was 16, then something happened and he lost his appeal. I know now it was because I was unable to be myself around him and all those homophobic jokes he would tell over dinner. I went over to his one Saturday, giving myself a talk in the mirror before I left

“You don’t have to say anything if you don’t want to mate, you do whatever you feel, no pressure – ok?”

It helped. Good to talk to yourself. Sometimes all you have is your reflection. I spent the day there with my brother, sister-in-law and five nieces and nephews (he really took that pressure off me!), it was nice. The kids went to bed and I knew my moment had come. Every time I went to say something I nearly threw up or laughed like a maniac.

“Ok, ok..Just leave the room, go to the loo, come back in and just say it…we have to say it…”

I sometimes refer to myself as ‘we’, not in the Royal way, more in a conscious/unconscious sense. I went, I came back, time slowed down, I felt sick and finally I said in a high nervous flutter

“I have something I need to tell you both, it won’t be a surprise, but basically I’m Gay”

I looked at them as if I had just asked a question and was waiting for a reply, they stared back at me with concern and fake disbelief. They knew, of course they did, but they didn’t realise I had been so open about it with others in my life. I explained that with all their fervent religious beliefs and the fact that I was never going to tell Mum and Dad I just didn’t think it was fair to tell them. We chatted for 4 hours, it was beautiful. He gave me a big bear hug and thanked me for telling him and said he was sorry that I didn’t feel I could have told him before. I got my big brother back that day, it felt really warm and light.

He asked me if I wanted him to be there when I told my parents, I said no, but thanks – and meant it.

Christmas arrived. I missed the annual heart-to-heart that I would usually have with my Mum on Christmas morning because I couldn’t bear to lie to her or thought I might let it slip. She missed me and it made me feel sad. It was a tense Christmas, I stayed over at my parent’s house for a couple of nights, on the last night I wandered round the house while they were all sleeping shuddering at the thought of all of it collapsing because of me. I looked at all our happy faces on display, knowing the pain behind the smiles and I wanted to smash them all, it all seemed like a lie.

“Just a couple of weeks to go mate, then it will all be over for better or worse, just a couple of weeks, we can do it…”

Of course we could, I’d already waited a lifetime.

Part 3.

The alarm goes off and I stare at the ceiling. It’s time to make the call, now before anything else gets in the way. Breathe..don’t forget to breathe, and don’t think too much, stupid.

“Hi Mum, I need to see you and Dad today, there’s something really important I need to tell you both”

Brief silence. Gulp, inhale.

“What is it? Tell me. What’s wrong?”

“I’ll tell you when I see you, I’ll be there at 12. Bye Mum.”

It didn’t quite seem real, would this be the day of days? It was the 20th Jan 2012, and it had been a long time coming. Every time I thought about my parents reaction I shook, like a wet dog. Best not think too much. But what if I break her heart? I remembered a story about an Egyptian Aunt I never met who cried herself to death, or was it blind, or white hair? I didn’t want any of that for either of my parents, especially not Mum.

A week before ‘the date’ someone close to me asked me if I really had to do it. He said that, knowing the culture, it might kill my Mum and that it seemed selfish to him. It was hard at that stage to deal with the discouragement, but he did make me really consider why I was so sure about going ahead.

“It’s what’s best for me mate, for once I’m gonna do what’s best for me, if I can’t do that for myself, who will?”

We can spend the rest of our lives living a life that we never chose, to protect others from their own ignorance or we can stand proud and defiantly march out those closet doors. It didn’t matter how late in life it was happening, it was time for the lie to end.

I get up, shower, dress, trying to keep as calm as possible. It was like I was watching a film – a bleak European one, or Russian maybe.  What was I going to say to them? Would I say gay? Homosexual? ‘Don’t like girls’? No idea. socks, only the Christmas ones, is that bad luck? I used to hold auditions for my underwear before special occasions or going on holidays, each potential brief or sock would perform and I would judge; I swear I invented the whole format. Today deserved something special but all I had was Simpsons at Christmas.

I leave the flat and get on the bus, I am suddenly aware that this will be the last closeted bus journey of my life, a tear comes to my eyes and I nearly lose it, it wouldn’t take much for this to turn in to a panic attack so I go back to thinking of nothing and breathing in blue. There’s the sea.

“Hello beautiful, wish me luck”

Having lived by the sea most my life she was a real presence to me, and I called her beautiful. Many tears, much laughter and even love had been expressed in front of her, so I was glad to have caught a glimpse through the filthy windows. The bus is slow and the passengers slower, there’s that smell of decay on them, gag. Seeya later suckers, I’m choosing life! Gag. The bus arrives at the top of my parents road, I get off and the panic starts to set in and I allow it this time. Heart beat races, hard to catch my breath, vision narrows.

“Maybe I’ll die now and I won’t have to do this”

It would have been a relief but also a waste I guess. With each step down the road I calm myself further until I reach the front door in a Zen-like state, which quickly turns in to anger when no one answers. What was wrong with these people? Not only had they ruined my life they also wanted to make this as difficult as possible.

I won’t lie, anger was helpful, it certainly trumped panic and fear. After 5 minutes my Dad answers, he’d been out in the garden, Mum wasn’t back from shopping yet. I could tell he was trying to distract me with things, he was clearly worried. As I look at his greying hair, tired face and kind eyes I suddenly feel nothing but care and compassion for him, the same happens with my Mum the second I see her. I felt sad and sorry for all of us, none of us had chosen this.

Mum was trying to fill my bag up with toiletries and food, maybe the last I would ever receive, at least for a while. Dad was trying to make me some food.

“Mum, Dad, get a cuppa and let’s go talk”

They do just that, solemnly but quickly. We sit and there it is suddenly, the moment that I thought would never be.

“Mum, Dad, there’s no easy way to say this but I’m Homosexual, before you react I haven’t got a boyfriend that I’m going to suddenly introduce to you and the main reason I’m telling you now is I don’t want you finding out from anyone else.”

It was done. I don’t know why I said homosexual, I guess I didn’t want them confusing an identity with a sexual preference. I braced myself for vomit and fire but none came. They sat there calmly, my Dad took his glasses off and a few tears trickled down his face, my Mum did the same. There was a strange feeling of relief in the room. I decided to carry on.

“I kept it from you as long as I could, I prayed to be healed harder than anyone has ever prayed for anything, It’s not been an easy life so far. I’ve been depressed, I’ve taken so many drugs, I tried to change and be with girls thinking it was a sickness that could be healed. I tried it all. But this is me, and I am happier now than I have ever been, all that has changed is that I am no longer lying to you, everything else is the same.”

I explained about the documentary and the plight of the gay Africans, my plans to write to all the churches and Christian organisations in the UK to challenge them to face up to what was being done in their name. I told them not to cry for me because I had cried enough for all of us. They just listened, sometimes looking at me with tears in their eyes sometimes looking at the floor.

It was time for them to speak. It turns out that the morning phone call had really scared them and they had imagined the worst. Apparently gay was nowhere near the worst thing they could imagine, it came far after cancer, aids, murder, baby…and many others. It became very clear that the tears were for me and how hard life had been for me, not for anything else. It seems that they loved me as much as their faith, I was astounded.

I told them that I didn’t mind who they did or didn’t tell, that was completely up to them, but there was one rule – they must not pray for me to be healed, that would be disrespectful.

“But you know son, God can do anything..”

“I know Mum, he could turn me in to an elephant if he wanted to, but he hasn’t”

We talked for 2 hours, they asked questions, we gently discussed what the bible says and how unclear it is, and how this is about love and life not just sex. They tried as hard as they could to understand and didn’t lay a single bit of guilt on me. That was it. They thanked me for being honest with them, we all hugged and they carried on as normal, my Mum even catching a bus back with me. But hang on! Why no shouting or anger? Why don’t they hate me? Can’t they even pretend to be a bit disgusted?? Nothing. BEAT ME! It turns out I was the one with the problem. It’s only when all the excuses are gone you see who you really are and how you feel about yourself. There was work to do.

I got off the bus, the first openly gay bus journey of my life, I laughed and cried. I became a walking cliche, it was light and free and confusing. This wasn’t the end, but it was a pretty incredible beginning.

I came out to my Parents two years ago today. I thought I would follow in the footsteps of other esteemed bloggers and use it as an opportunity to re-post the three-part entry that I wrote in the early days covering the event.

To anyone who is considering this big step know this: there is no set age, time or place to come out, it happens when it happens, for me it was when I was 31.

We all deserve a life of freedom and acceptance, firstly from ourselves, then from others. It may be the hardest thing you ever do, it may be easier than you think, there are no guarantees. Be strong and know yourself, become your own personal hero and an inspiration to others. Change this world by changing the world around you. The best I can do is simply share my story and celebrate my first two years completely out of the closet.

Come out mate, because you can. As the the world grows slowly darker we must not become complacent in our relative freedom, a freedom that was passed down to us only recently. We may well see Gay marriage legalised  across the Western world soon, but what about our brothers and sisters in Uganda? Russia? I stand in solidarity with those who don’t have the choice or relative luxury that we do. We must stand with them and for them, some battles have been won but the war is long and seemingly endless. Let’s not become complacent.

I stand in solidarity with women in their universal struggle for equality, we share the same prejudice and foe. We must fight for our neighbour’s rights, as animals it makes evolutionary sense, we need each other. As the rights of those around us are dismantled it is easy to bury our heads in the sinking sands of fear and indifference, but we must fight together, on each other’s behalf, or their will be no one to fight with us when we are the target.

If you are heterosexual and you know that someone around you is struggling to come to terms with their sexuality, please go out of your way to comfort and reassure them. If you have a family member that you suspect may be gay but your family doesn’t talk about it, how about showing them that it’s fine by you, even indirectly? Make it clear that you believe in love, freedom and equality for ALL. Be a comfort to someone living in pain and fear.

We must not be used as a commodity of political diversion, we must stand up for our rights, but we cannot do it alone. The whole of society must stand up for the ideals that many have died and are dying for; whilst clutching to our possessions, our property it’s easy to forget that most of the world has nothing, that our wealth is based on the poverty of the masses. The least we can do is be aware and take our part.

It’s two years since I came out to my family, things may not have exactly gone to plan, it may not have been easy, but my life is no longer a lie, I know who I am and I feel strong. Please be there for someone this year that really needs you, please show the world that you will not tolerate prejudice or oppression of any kind.

Now please excuse me, it’s time to eat my rainbow-coloured penis cake.

Tim Part 4.

Posted: October 29, 2013 in Bi, Coming out, Gay, homosexuality, LGBT, love, Uncategorized
Tags: , , , , ,

I’m so bored of tragedy, so sick of heartache. This is the last sad story I want to tell. You have to make room in your heart for someone new, for love, for life; ghosts take up a surprising amount of space and time.

I’m angry, really fucking enraged, it’s grown since I started writing this but the show must go on, the curtain must fall. Even anger is attachment. I know I have to let go, I’m almost there but the truth is that I now want him to suffer, I want him to feel just a fraction of the pain that I have felt, that he caused. It might not be the most evolved of reactions, just the current one, the human one.

I want to punch him in the heart so it bleeds. I want him to feel it. I want him gone.

I’d pace up and down until midnight, that’s when his pizza-delivery-round would end. We devised a system using our newly acquired analogue mobile phones: If he was coming I’d receive a missed call of two ‘rings’ to be replied to with one, that is if I was still up and it was OK for him to come over. I was always up, It was always OK. This is how I mostly spent my year-out after college, before Uni.

We’d stay-up half the night watching Live TV, Bravo or just those girls gyrating to phone calls from the morbidly obese. We’d talk about everything and nothing, mostly nothing.

Emily eventually left him, reluctantly, she immediately regretted it; I had never been happier of course. It was 2001 and I was at Uni now, he came straight up to see me the day that it happened, he played his usual deviant tricks and I clapped my hands. My happiness was short-lived however, he met Carla one week later, she was much smarter than the last. We loved and hated each other so deeply it was grotesque. She got what I wanted, I got what she wanted, no one was satisfied but him. The day he called to tell me about Carla I had to pretend a friend had died to explain my morbid tone. I was just heartbroken and somehow knew this one would stick.

Uni was a great respite, I could fake a life on both sides, it was over far too soon, so abruptly. As I returned to Brighton so did my desperation, it was getting harder to fake the smiles and mask the jealousy, especially around her. I despised her. She was such a lovely person which only deepened my hatred.

One day I popped over to show Tim a new computer game that I had found  called ‘Slut Fighters’ where big-boobed pixelated whores would fight for the chance to be bedded by the ‘King Dong’. The truth is that I had waited for three days to see him, so when he finally called I came running. I knew he’d love the game, he’d have to be impressed this time.

As I walked in to the house I quickly realised that Carla was there which immediately filled me with a murderous rage, he’d assured me we’d be alone this time. I was about to walk out, but Tim grabbed my arm and told me not to be  a prick, that it was fine, she was in a good mood.

After scowling at him for some time I popped my head round the dining room door, walked in tentatively, then said hello to Carla, she was washing some dishes at the sink with her back to me. I saw her recoil at the sound of my voice, then a shudder that seemed to convulse her whole body, brief stillness, then she smashed all the dishes. After a moment and some heavy breaths she came over and gave me a big hug, her hands were bleeding, they left a mark where she perhaps would have rather stabbed me.

Tim was upstairs.

Time passed, nothing changed.

Both Tim and I were mutual friends with a guy called Martin, he asked us both to be best men at his wedding. Martin had been called by God to go to Bible college (he failed his ‘A’ Levels and didn’t know what to do, so the church, seeing his vulnerability, stole him). Tim and I decided to take Martin and his saintly posse to a big ‘school disco’ night in Hammersmith, for the Stag do. He said that we could take-over a spare dorm on the campus so we could stay out all night.

The second we entered the club I had two girls in-tow, as was customary, I’d picked them based on Tim’s preferences seeing as I had none. It wasn’t noted by him unfortunately, they were promptly dismissed so they could return to their slaggery. I watched him the whole night, I wanted him, he saw me looking at one point, he stared back blankly then looked down.

That early morning we stumbled back to the dorm, the other guys had passed-out in the various hallways, only me and Tim were awake. We sat on our individual beds for a while chatting, until there was a silence that I will remember for the rest of my life. After what felt like an age he spoke softly, with a slight quiver that I had only heard once before.

“You love me don’t you?”

I lay there stunned, wounded, exposed. I said nothing.

“I’d let you suck me, you know? I don’t know if I’d enjoy it but I’d like to think I would..I’d do that for you..”

I mumbled something then pulled the covers over my head as I disappeared in to the depths of my own shame. I should have gone over there, I should have just done it and got it out of the way, it would have saved me the endless lust, longing that I would feel for the next decade. Instead I did nothing.

There was a reason I had only been attracted to the straight ones, it was a form of self-protection, and denial of course. They were never supposed to let me in, I should never be allowed, it could never be OK, This didn’t mean I was gay did it? I couldn’t be gay. Anything but gay. But him knowing that before me? Devastating.

How could he have known something that had been so obscured from me for so long? What did it mean? Did I really love him? It was all suddenly so fucking clear. Down, down, I sunk in to an emotional coma.

The next morning we both acted as if nothing had been said, neither of us ever mentioned it again, I had hoped that he was admitting something to me, that he would come to me perhaps over time, but nothing else ever happened. I’ll never know his true feelings. The days following the wedding were the darkest that I had ever experienced, up until then. It was too much for my already wounded psyche. I broke down, completely.

It’s 10 years since I ran away to Japan to get away from him, from us, from me. I ran as far as I could, but you catch up with yourself eventually. I’m the Usain Bolt of misery. In Japan I found myself with a guy, fell in love and for the briefest of times forgot about Tim. Since then I have re-lived my story so many times, through so many straight guys it makes me sick to think of it. Each time I would briefly forget, until they showed they were no match for him.

I distanced myself after returning from Japan, I even told him that I had tried gay sex, he was intrigued but nothing more. He would visit a few times a year, more out of loyalty than kinship, I tried many times to talk about the past but he would just switch off or plead ignorance. I could always see the fear in his eyes, the same fear I once had. Two years ago he had a child with Carla, and I knew then it really was the end. During those two years I have come out to myself over and over again, to my family and to the world. I needed him physically gone so that I could live. Now it’s time for the ghost to leave.

There is no lonelier place than the closet, especially with him standing by the door, holding it shut, peeking in. One by one we come out to change the world around us, to try and survive whilst others would take away our love, our freedom, our lives. One by one we return to innocence, back to the beginning, to the child with his eyes wide and heart open.

Next time he’ll be worth it, I swear. My name is Pete and I am a love addict.