Mine is not a happy one.
My story starts when I was about 10. My family and I lived about an hour out from Melbourne in the relatively new suburb of Bayswater (well it was back in the 60’s). Mum, Dad, two older brothers and a newly adopted younger sister. We were the first of a large English family to immigrate to Australia…most of the family followed in the next ten years. We were your traditional English family: high moral standards, etc. you can see I was up against it from the very beginning.
I remember my cousins used to get the Post magazine and I would spend my time looking at the guys in their Speedos instead of the girls in their bikinis, and those Joe Weedier and Charles Atlas adverts. Their bodies really drew my attention. I could tell there was something different about me but wasn’t sure what it was. I was a bit of a loner as I was 5 years younger than my older brothers and as my parents hadn’t really settled and would move every 18 months to two years, so you see, I didn’t have any friends.
One time when I was 15 I was allowed to go into the city to keep a doctors appointment. It was a big thing for me to travel on a train. On the way home I had to change trains at Ringwood, waiting for 30 minutes on the bench outside the men’s toilet. This guy approached me and started to talk to me and within a short time I found myself in a cubical with my pants down around my ankles. That was my first gay experience. I didn’t speak to anyone about it, and in fact I just pushed it to the back of my mind and pretended it didn’t happen.
When I turned 18 I got my license and bought my first car, which gave me some independence. Mum tried the usual tactics and got me to go out with her friends’ daughters. In between dating girls I found myself drawn to public toilets and very much enjoyed what I was doing in them. Finally I got married at the age of 23 and fathered 2 wonderful sons. The marriage lasted 10 years; eventually I met a guy who I fell in love with. It was the hardest thing I have ever done, to be honest with myself and admit to myself that I was gay. I could hardly believe it. I couldn’t be gay as I was the father of 2 sons. How could I be gay? Well I was, and left the marriage. I told my mum and dad and Mum said I was filthy and disgusting and my dad assaulted me and told me to get out of the house and not to come back. So much for 33 years of a son’s love for his parents.
My relationship lasted 18 years. How it lasted that long I don’t know. He was very selfish with his emotions and didn’t show his love. I suppose I had found someone like my dad and felt safe. I remember when my mum passed away, I sat with her for an hour before she was taken to the morgue, saying my goodbyes. Afterward I rang him which was a big mistake. “That’s nothing to do with me, that’s your problem.” He wouldn’t share my grief with me. I suppose it was my sons that kept me in the relationship. I put every effort into being a good dad for my boys, and why wouldn’t I, they gave me love and happiness. My wife had given me very liberal access to my sons and I took full advantage of it.
I really tried hard to make my gay relationship work. He wanted threesomes so I tried it, he wanted to smoke dope so I tried it, he wanted to use toys so I tried it, as far as he was concerned it was always about sex. But I wanted more. Towards the end he became violent. He would smoke his bong all night long and in the morning he would be moody. I had to tippy-toe around him or he would snap at me. He even assaulted me twice.
It has been 4 years since I finished the relationship and I’m now pushing 54. My sons have grown into fine young men and lead their own lives. I am on my own and have tried the dating sites but find that most of the guys on them just play games and are not who they say they are.
At times I feel very lonely, but I look back at the 18 years and thank god I am no longer with him.
I am happy now.