Tag Archives: gay men

Jumping Back Into Theatre

Theatre

In trying to find my next step, I will be getting into local theatre. I have currently been a part of six different productions throughout my high school and college career. There is a theatre organization that will be putting on two different shows this summer that I hope to be a part of. Many pieces will have to fall into place though. Currently working second shift at my job creates a problem when it comes to attending rehearsals. My supervisor did say that they would be willing to talk about a shift change if something did come up. If everything did work out, it would be beneficial in more ways than one. I would be able to do something that I enjoy and be able to attend rehearsals but it would also allow me to work the same hours as Brendon. As always when doing a show there is pretty much no free time but it would allow me to see Brendon more than I currently would working different shifts. I have got in contact as well with my previous vocal coach and she is open to working with me again. She is definitely an inspiration; a wonder to work with.

As I looked out on my college life being a Elementary Education and Theatre Performance double major I found myself to be unhappy in more ways than I wanted to be. The biggest part was I did not want to spend so much time on a show that I simply did not care about though my major required me to be. It was also a hard balancing act when it came to acting class, shows, and other classes not at all dealing with theatre. College was an emotional and metaphorical suicide. I feel like I can give more now that I do not have as many different areas of my life starving to get my attention.

Before I dropped out of college for financial reasons, I had a wonderful semester in Beginning Acting. I felt that I was actually getting somewhere. To define me as a great actor would be untrue but I am working on it and would like to become better. The biggest hurdle that theatre wanted me to overcome was to accept my sexuality. Theatre requires transparency and vulnerability from its actors. I could not be vulnerable in a role until I became vulnerable in my own life. I see this time as different. Theatre helped me to deal and grow through the situations I had and now I want to further embrace them so that others can be inspired to make a difference in their own life and/or in others lives.

Plunging myself into theatre will gain me the confidence that I desperately need. I find myself unhappy and ashamed with where I am in life and yet wondering where to go and what path I should take for the future. I want to help people and make a difference. This is one way to do that. Making candles in a factory is not something I want to be doing for the rest of life. As I look around, I see the trouble the economy is having and the lack of jobs.  Realistically there just is not much out there. I know I have much potential waiting to bloom and thrive. The problem comes with what environment, what career, would best cultivate it. I feel that I have been given too many gifts and talents to honor them all. Where do I fit in? I could do pretty much anything. What is a career that combines my gifts and talents but yet also satisfy me? I am on a journey to find it and I have theatre by my side to help me out.

Please wish me the best as I embark on this new chapter of my life.

God Bless,

Josh


Labels

One day Brendon brought up that someone had made a negative comment to someone else because of their sexuality at work. I assumed that someone had said something about him. I wanted him to know that I was there for him and we let it go. It came up again only to find out that it was aimed at me. A good friend of Brendon’s that also works were we work asked who was running the machine and was answered with “Oh just a fag.” Brendon’s friend let Brendon know only for his friend to find out that I was Brendon’s boyfriend. His friend is very supportive but did not like the comment that was given. I was surprised to find out that the person who said it was the guy that I had talked to and wrote about in my post “Experience and Discussion”. In moving machines since starting where I work, I do work with this guy now fairly consistantly.

The first couple of days were hard for me as I knew there was a division between us. This is honestly the first time I have been called a fag since I came out. As I go back through the memories trying to recount all of this, it disheartens me. He did not have the guts to say it to my face but to backstab me for something I have no control over. As I thought about it more, he bullies me because he lacks confidence in himself. I possess something that he simply does not. I do not care about his opinions because they are simply that, opinions. He chooses to bully instead of trying to understand. Sexuality is a rough topic and with his brother also being gay I think he has a hard time wrestling with it.

Yesterday he actually made a comment to me. Our candles were pouring too hot; making them very soupy. He had took one of the candles out of the machine to check it.  He compared what the candles were looking like to cum and commented that I liked that. In response, “Who cares?” It is just another stab. Your label of “fag” will not stick to me. I accept myself and God who made me. My love is sincere and passionate. I have a wonderful boyfriend and we have a wonderful life together. I am not going to be pushed down by someone else who simply is not worth my time.

For right now, it is what it is. If it does get worse, I will let someone know. I will not let it get to being a “Code Black”. (At work, a code black is where someone calls that over that PA system that there is fighting or violence in the factory so people will know and break it up.)

It is the hardest for me because we are brothers in Christ. We are both Christians and yet he chooses to bully me. I will not respond with violence but that is why I am easy target. I will do my job and not hold a grudge but he is walking on a fine line to loosing his job if he does not stop what he is doing.

-Josh


Missing Opportunities

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In light of being faced with some opposition, I wanted to say a few words. Since Sunday happened to be the anniversary for the Boy Scouts of America, the troop that our church sponsors had a part of the service where they brought and placed the flags, lead us all in the Pledge of Allegiance and recited their pledges. One of the leaders also spoke for a little bit. How fitting with all this controversy when it comes to allowing gay people to participate in this organization. It breaks my heart to see a fellow Youth Group member be a part of this organization and knowing that he came out previously. Knowing that his family and himself has to bury deep inside him who he really is. People discount him even more because he has a condition, some form of ADHD. He can be hyper and full of energy, hard to calm down. With his condition, they deny his sexuality as part of the condition. He does not really know what he is talking about. I have not been able to talk to him at all since I heard that he had come out on a missions trip one summer. His parents are very protective like mine were at that age. I just wish the best for him but my heart breaks seeing that. May he be able to be happy and enjoying life to the fullest.

I write this to say that Boy Scouts of America is making a mistake in not accepting gay people. What did we do any way to deserve being kicked out? The organization builds many good and moral attributes into the young men they work with. Even gay men can benefit from Boy Scouts. I cannot wrap my mind around the reason for this ban. We are simply people trying to do the best with our lives that we can. We have no control over our sexuality. If we did the gay rights movement would not what it is today.

In banning gay people, an opportunity is lost. An opportunity to love someone and get to know them. Are we not going to treat everyone as they would want to be treated? To deny someone of their final badge not because they did not complete the program but because of their sexual orientation is far from anything beneficial. We cared for you and helped you go through this program but now we’re going to strip you of the confidence and feeling of a job well done. It is betrayal and backstabbing. This is only going against the principles that they themselves teach the young men. No matter what happens with the Boys Scouts of America, as one person I will love people for who they are. I will not waste opportunities to love and care about someone simply because I do not understand or agree with them. I am more than that and I think the Boys Scouts of America is more than that as well.

I also encountered a page that my brother had written to use for a Bible Study that he started. The topic was morality and servitude. He focused on The Decline of the United States and bullet point number one was gay rights. There are two verses and then raises the question of how does this affect us today. I cannot express how hurt I am by this. I have a wonderful boyfriend and we love each other very much. I do the best I can with what I am given. It just makes me realize that I need to speak up more and be more real than I ever have before. It hurts me to think that this Bible Study of high school guys is going to bash gay people and not allowing people to love who they love.

There have been times when I missed opportunities that I could have spoken up about my sexuality and my life as a gay man. Sometimes I just do not want to deal with it because it is always in my face, always trying to do the right thing. I need to remember that no matter what the response or the opinions of others, I need to stand up for myself and my fellow gay brothers. I need to be there for those that are hurting even when others will not.

Though other people can try to hurt us, it is ourselves that let it effect us. I am real enough to know that we have problems with the Boy Scouts of America and my brother but the point is to do the best that I can and not allow it to take over my world. We can never loose sight of the hope we have for ourselves and for others. There is always hope and there is always hope for positive change. What I say as a gay man is just as important as a well known gay activist says. We all have a part to help others understand and try to see the world from our eyes.

God Bless,

Josh


Man 2 Man Clothing Company

Holding Hands

I started a website so I could fundraise money for the company that I will be starting. Please feel free to check it out and if you are led to give, you can send me a comment with your email address where I will send you a request and you can complete your donation. There is much work to do before Man 2 Man Clothing Company becomes a company but I am looking forward to the journey that God has given me the opportunity to go down. If you are unable to give, thoughts and prayers are always appreciated. As well, please spread the word about my new upcoming company. Hopefully we can have success in both making gay men look and feel good but also helping gay men in need.

http://man2manclothingcompany.weebly.com/index.html

God Bless,

Josh


Why?

Brendon and I have been texting each other and hanging out. He briefly talked to me in the lunch room one day when he was on break and I was there a little bit early. Friday I texted him and asked if we could chat. Since it is Friday night, he might be out doing something. I was just trying to be considerate. He told me he was free so we talked. When the conversation slowed down, he told me he was “feeling like being bad right now” and asked me if I could send him a picture. At first I thought it was just so that he could have a picture of me but the tone shifted. His next text was “Yep of u know what”. I had to ask him what was really happening here because I was just shocked. Was he really asking for a picture of my penis?  I never want a guy to ask that but he was the first to do so. I confirmed that that was what he was talking about. “Do u want to be bad with me and u send me a pic and i send u one” I responded with “That’s what I thought. i like you brendon but i am waiting until marriage to have sex. i don’t want to send you a picture of me. i’m surprised honestly that you would ask . i don’t know what to think anymore.” At this point my emotions are going all over the place. Did I see something in him that just was not there? In a conversation with coworkers at work he said that he almost got a girl pregnant. That turned me off to him but we have been hanging out and I think we both really like each other. At least that is the way it looks to me. His next text is “Good i do not want one, i just wanted to see what you would say. thank you, u ok” This further took me by surprise. So he put me through this emotional roller coaster. Why? If it were me, I would not cause a guy I like or was with going through something like that. I still do not really know why he did it. He texted me “Sorry some time i do not think, i just like to ask an out of the blue question and see what they say. sorry.” We talked more and at the end of it I had to just ask him if we could talk about this another time because I was tired from working and I was overacting more than I would if I was more levelheaded. He agreed and we said good night to each other. He then texts me “Hey sorry one more thing, i have been used alot that is why i ask questions like that sometimes. sorry now i feel like i was out of line. i hope we can still be friends. i hope that you can forgive me. have a good night.” I read that text and went to bed.

The next morning I responded with “I care about you alot. last night made me feel many different emotions. i always want to be there for you. you made me think you were just another guy bopping through life not caring about who he sleeps with. you made me think that i was wrong about you. that you were like every other guy. i know right now you’re trying to do the right thing in life. you scared me by what you said and did. i want you to know that i will NEVER use you. i feel for you deeply and i’m crying as i write this text. i forgive you. i would like to talk about why i freaked out with you in person so you understand. we’re good now. ((hug))” He responded with “Thanks and sorry again.”

We have not talked face to face about this yet. We might be able to hang out for a little bit today after he gets off work. This is the first time he has to work and I have off today. I still have not fully processed and gotten over this conversation. Writing this post will hopefully help me process this more and hopefully get some feedback and advice on what I should do in the future.

I can understand he has been used in a past. He is damaged and has been hurt. To a degree, we all are. I do want to be there for him, no matter if we have a relationship or not, and just be there for him as he is a guy who is bisexual, who struggles with his sexuality like I do, who is another gay brother that I need to love and give hope to.

One question that I have is he told me he has a girlfriend and that he enjoyed her company. They pray together and he feels loved. Why would he do all this if he has a girlfriend? I do not want him cheating with me on his girlfriend. It is hard because I cannot have a relationship because of my parents but for the girl’s sake, do not be in a relationship with her when you really want to be with me but are only settling for her.

I think it will take us a while to get through this speed bump. It really makes me question everything that we have gone through together.

The reason though why I got so emotional was before I had that conversation with Brendon a lady at work was talking about how one of her sister’s friends, who was gay, had sex with a cow. The conversation then went to how gay guys put guinea pigs and fire extinguishers up their butts. I was appalled to say the least that she would even bring this up. Sex and sexual purity is a big deal for me, especially because I am a gay man. No wonder gay guys get all these diseases. They do all these kinky things with other guys. I do not mean to be graphic but one guy cannot take two guys having anal sex with him. I feel for all the gay guys who do this. I do not judge them but my heart is moved for them. It is a person’s responsibility to take care of their own sexual health and the health of their boyfriend/partner/husband. We need to use our brains as gay men and not do things that would hurt us and/or one another.

I hope that one day I have a wonderful husband and we have a wonderful sex life but we need to keep each other’s health and safety as our top priority before we engage in different behaviors and actions.

I do not know why all of this is happening in my life right now but hopefully this post helps someone else as I try to make sense of it.

Have a great week ahead!

-Josh


Blessings

The inspiration for my last post came from a place of being alone; of loneliness and honesty. I just wanted to get all my feelings out so that they would not be able to build pressure within me. At the beginning of the day I was at a low point but things got better from there.

Ever since I started working again at the candle factory I am currently working in, I have had my eye on this one guy. He worked on another machine and even worked another shift. I would watch him from my machine as I was working before he would leave. Under the circumstances, I tossed getting to know him out of my mind. It just was not going to work out. One day, he came over to help in my department for the last 30 minutes of his shift. He introduced himself. Brendon is his name. I was nervous because I had never thought that I would ever be working with him. It was not long before he had to leave but he made his impression. I still wanted to get to know him more. The next time he came over to help, I was swamped trying to get supplies and show other coworkers what to do when he comes over. He actually surprised me in coming over. Our eyes just connected and I smiled at him for a couple seconds. I cannot give what I felt the justice of words. I love his eyes because there is so much to them. They are so loving, warm, and inviting. He had another 30 minutes before he had to leave. I showed him what to do and in the process noticed that he had on a Christian camp t-shirt with a verse on the back. He was gay and he was a Christian. What are the odds of that? I did not even think that was possible to find another gay Christian in my small town. This week, he asked for overtime and was allowed to work a maximum of 15 hours overtime on top of all of the factory workers working an 8 hour Saturday. So Monday he came over to my department and worked 3 hours. It was a good time to get to know him and throughout that whole time I was just smiling. He has a genuine, care free personality that I like about him. Being around him makes me remember to relax and enjoy life when at times I can be too goal focused and too stressed out.

So I posted my previous post on Wednesday and as I was working I felt that something positive was going to happen with Brendon and I. God was telling me that something was. (I will never forget the time God told me to be ready for when a friend I knew online had pre-marital sex with his girlfriend and he texted me freaking out about it. I thought it was an absurd thought that I had just had but it actually became real. It shows me I need to always be listening to what God is telling me.) Brendon was about to leave and I wanted to talk to him about something work related –  something was not in the right place it should of been that he had been previously working on. I debated if I should come up to him or not as he was talking to my supervisor. I wrestled with myself and ultimately walked up to him and said something. After we worked that out, he very casually gave me a piece of paper and told me to let him know if I wanted to hang out. He had given me his number. Never in my life has another guy given me their number. I know I have somewhat of a very sheltered life because of my parents but it was a big deal. I thought about him and what had happened all throughout my shift and texted him after I got off. We are meeting for coffee tomorrow and we are both really looking forward to it. It has been since December since I have had another gay guy in my real life that I am able to talk to. I would really like us to be friends and if things work out, maybe more. I am just taking it one step at a time and not letting my emotions get too in the way of everything else.

The funny thing is though when I found out Brendon’s name I tried to find him on Facebook through mutual coworkers. I honestly did not think I would find him as I only had his first name and little information. I actually found him and that is what confirmed he was indeed gay and a Christian. I debated for a while on whether or not to send him a message with my number because I never knew when we would be working together again. I actually sent him a message with my number 8 days before he gave me his. He is not on Facebook much with all the time he works and his dog just had puppies but to my knowledge he did not see the message before he gave me his number. I reached out to him first but I am glad that it happened the way it did because it made me me feel loved and that I was special.

One problem I face is I cannot say I am fully attracted to him. I am attracted to parts of him but not all of him. Is this weird or have other gay guys experienced this? Hopefully with time I will be able to be fully attracted to him. I think God is protecting me as I do live with my parents and I have chosen to honor them by not being in a relationship while I am living under their roof.

I am blessed to have Brendon in my life. I thank God for him. Hopefully we can be good friends and he is able to understand the deepest parts of me. I am excited to get to know him better.

-Josh

(Photo courtesy of Welcome to the New Age via Tumblr)


Being Real In The World I Live In

I just need a place to be honest about what I am feeling right now. Everyday I hurt because I cannot love who I was made to love. I am forced to deny myself by my parents and daily they reinforce the pain they are inflicting. They are oblivious to the pain they cause me because they are unwilling to accept that I indeed am gay. I do not fit into their worldview so they try to fit me into a box that I just do not fit or deny all of it. I will never deny that I have attractions to other men. God calls me to live a life of truth. Do you want me to lie my whole life and sin that way or commit the sin of homosexuality? This is why I distance myself from my parents. When religion and Christianity hinders a person from seeing another’s hurt and pain and to logically reason, it has gone too far. I honestly do not care if my parents accept my choices in life but I want them to accept me as a gay man. From them to see that, yes, I do have attractions to other men. All of this pain and hurt is real. So much so that I have a heart condition that doctors cannot tell me why it is happening. I give it to the stress of work and my sexuality struggle through life. Do my parents not see that they are killing me literally because of what they do? Do you want to have me as your son or not? I would not be surprised one day I just had a heart attack at work and past out on the floor. I am dying inside as I try to live my life. I long for love from another man. I am starving for it. Just a hug from another gay man.

I cannot go on to live a life in which Christians make gay people into aliens. I am still appalled that my dad would compare my relationship with my dog to his relationship with his wife. They are two completely different things. The Church wants us to not be human. Sexuality is a part of humanity as is loving another person. According to the Church we are forced to be aliens, sub human to the rest of the world, living alone and just going through life never experiencing love in a relationship or loving someone so much that a person would give their whole body to them. I will not be treated less than by anyone. This was not the way it was intended nor the way it should be. Some churches even ban gay people because they are gay. Gay people are sick and we do not want any part of it. I did not choose my sexuality so why are you trying to hurt me because of it?

I wish people would be able to see me, all of me, for who I am. Yes, I am a Christian. Many Christians will say Jesus is the answer. I have found Him and have a personal relationship with Him. What I struggle with is the oppression of a group of people because they are different. That I am seen as less than because of who I was created to be. God loves and sees everyone equally. Why do not Christians and people today? Stop fearing gay people. We do not want to hurt anyone. We just want to be treated like everyone else.

I just want to be able to be happy and be able to have that right. To be treated like everyone else. To be able to have a relationship that I am able to enjoy, to love and be loved in return. Being gay is not all about the sex. Being gay is about loving someone with all your heart and no matter what or how people may treat you for who you are you love them unconditionally.

I hope that people would see me as the gay man that I am. I am open and honest about my life because I want people to take their blinders off and see that maybe they do not know everything there is about sexuality. Sexuality is a complex topic and no one has it all figured out. I do not know everything but do not be a person that thinks they know everything and then pushes their views on everyone else. It is not doing one bit of good. It is only causing great tension.

See me for who I am.

-Josh