First off, I have to say that I really love the It Gets Better campaign. The thing I like most about "It Gets Better" is the positive focus. The gay community plays the victim so much that it's refreshing to see a positive perspective of being gay.
I love watching the videos. It seems everybody who is anybody - and even a few nobodies and anybody wannbes - has made an "It Gets Better" video; although, my favorite - by far - is the one created by the LA Gay Mens Chorus - it brings tears to my eyes every time I watch it. It's beautiful and sad at the same time - sad because I just don't see myself ever being circled about by my straight family and friends.
And ... I find myself wondering: What about those of us who accept our homosexuality much later in life? "It Gets Better" is focused on gay youth - I get that and support it. But, what about people like me who lived most of our lives pretending to be straight and have finally accepted who we are? Does it get better? Or is this as good as it gets?
I no longer have to deal with bullies trying to rip away my self esteem. Echos of being called a queer and a fag are distant memories. In that sense I guess it has gotten better ...
But ... my life is filled with diametrically opposed conflicts
- A part of me regrets that I didn't accept myself much earlier in life and pursued a relationship that feels right. Yet if I had - then I wouldn't have my wife and best friend; and, I wouldn't have my children who mean the world to me.
- I am gay celibate. Yet, a part of me regrets that I never took the opportunity to experience the love of another man when I was younger.
- Part of me yearns for male companionship - yet I cannot - I must not - seek it as doing so would hurt those that are most dear to me.
- I want to proclaim to the world that I'm gay - yet due to my personal circumstances I must remain in the closet.
- I attend a church that teaches me that these feelings I have are unnatural and impure - and that acting on them is a violation of God's most sacred commandments. Yet - they don't feel unnatural or impure to me. And, even though I have consciously chosen to deprive myself of a man-on-man relationship - I don't encourage others to choose the same path I have chosen. In fact, I support them if they choose to live their lives to their fullest in a deeply committed relationship with someone of their own gender.
- I continuously seek for answers - answers that always elude me - answers that I doubt even exist.
So ... is this it? Is this as good as it's going to get for me? Am I doomed to spend the rest of my life seeking balance where none exists?
And what happens when I die? Religious leaders tell me that these feelings I have are only for mortality - that I will magically change into a heterosexual upon death. I hear their words - but their words sound hollow and feel wrong. What if I don't want to be a heterosexual in the afterlife?
Yet ... if I remain a homosexual in the afterlife - am I doomed to spend eternity trying to reconcile the irreconcilable? Doesn't that sounds like a definition for hell?
So ... does it get better? Or, for people like me, is this as good as it's ever going to get? Ever ...