Today’s Video Story was collected on the 50-state Story Tour. Check out the blog where you can follow us on our adventure. If you haven’t submitted a story yet to IFD, or if you want to submit another one, I’d love to read and publish it. Write one up and send it in.
My name is Lewis, I’m from Wasilla. Lived here, pretty much all my life. In middle school, the time period I was going there – the word “fag” was starting to hit schools and people were starting to use it a lot. And people were calling me that a lot and I was taking it as they knew you know, how I felt inside. I was freaking out, obviously, you know, like eleven years old and people already know without me even telling them. What’s the rest of my life going to be like? People at my school were very religious and I tried to come out one year – told one friend and of course, she told everybody else. And came to school the next day and nine or ten people all around the flag pole holding hands and as I walked in there little leader was like, “Oh we’re praying for your soul, we’re praying for your soul, we’re praying you get better.” I was like, “Oh crap! This is not good.” I thought it was kind of all over then, but I told them it was all a joke and they believed it. When I was nineteen my mom had come over while I was living at my old apartment and she was helping me clean up and she just casually asked, “Have you been out on any dates?” You know, the mom stuff? And I kind of turned my head for a second, “Oh” Kind of blushed a little bit. “Oh, who’s the lucky girl?” Mom’s know when you’re hiding something and I didn’t say anything for a second. Then she said, “Oh, who’s the lucky boy?” I’m like, “Mom! What the hell?” She’s like, “Hon, I’ve known for a while.” And she started crying a little bit. I felt that she was sad and she just stared at me and said, “Stand up and give your mom a hug.” And so we hugged for a little bit. She said that she was going to tell my dad. But my dad had already found out by that time. One of my friends had talked to another person that worked at the hospital with my dad. And this person was a notorious gossip. Told everybody in the hospital except for my dad so people were coming in and out of his office all day saying, “Oh Lou, we just found out – we’re so sorry.” And my dad not knowing that I was gay, very confused, then the gentleman, who himself was gay, he came into his office and said, “Ah, the hardest part is over. It’s cool running from here.” My dad, “Okay, what the fu** is going on?” “Well, talking about your son.” “What do you mean? What about my son? What’s going on?” “Oh, you don’t know.” So then, I didn’t get to come out to my dad the way I wanted to, but he found out anyways. He made it very clear, that he didn’t care which way, you know, If I liked women or if I liked men. As long as I was happy. The main reason he was sad, is because he wanted grandchildren and I told him, “You’re still getting grandchildren it’s just me with a turkey baster.” And he’s like, “Aah, that’s fine! Everything’s cool now.”