I’m From West Milford, NJ – Video Story.

by patrick lupinski

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For the transcript, Continue Reading.I’m Patrick Lupinski. I grew up in West Milford which is kind of like a wooded area, very suburban/rural in Northwest Jersey where it was super conservative when I was there, but now it’s kind of changed. But growing up gay, 15 years old, I was always on the Internet. And I became so much more comfortable with who I was at such a young age, like 15 or 14, I was able to talk to people who I related to really well. I wasn’t repressing that, or hiding that. Yeah, I was at school not out until my Senior year in high school but before that I was able to become more confident with who I was.

I feel like I build lasting relationships with people online. I’ve been able to read profiles and get a sense of who that person actually is, where as going to a bar is dark, you’re drunk, and you have no idea who they are. Sometimes I think it’s a little more genuine than sometimes what reality can be. Sometimes I meet people and it wasn’t what I expected at all and sometimes it’s like, wow, this is so much better than what I expected. Or, like, yeah, that’s exactly what I expected.

I met this kid Keith in a chat room online, he was from Boston, and he showed up one day, he drove down to when I used to work at Staples–my first job–and he showed up and we hung out. We drove out, got a motel room in the middle of nowhere and just spent the weekend together, and then dated each other for a year. And then I could drive up to Boston and be myself and then walk the streets because it was a completely alien city to me, foreign city to me. Nobody knew me. And I could just–we could hold hands and it was pretty acceptable. I could be out at 17 but then I’d have to drive back and live this, like–I ran track, and live this sport, like, lifestyle in high school.

My mom was like, “How the hell did you get 60,000 miles on your car in one year?” She didn’t really know until I came out to her, but that was a pretty cool relationship.

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