March 1998

Hello from me, again. Well, this month, I have decided to go all-change. Last month, as you may know, I have looked at a few, specific stories from the newspapers here that have bothered me. This probably wasn't an ideal solution to an un-ideal problem (is anything really ideal?). So, now I am going to have a new approach. My story. It isn't big, it isn't particularly interesting. It's me, though.

Right, now, where to start. Well, as you know my name is Neil, and I'm a member of that minority in society that is gay and lesbian. When the actually realization that I was gay hit, I don't know. It was somewhere around the age of twelve which to some of you will probably seem early, but to me it seems about the age many people will make the realization be it subconsciously or on a more 'defined' level.

As I said before, the realization didn't hit me in one go. Up until that moment, I had been fed the idea that I was going to get a girlfriend some time around this age then, later in life get engaged, married, have kids and a mortgage living my life in suburbia, getting older then eventually retire with a wife at my side and grandchildren playing at my feet. For years, this was the picture that I imagined myself in, maybe not with a wife and kids, but living my life with a woman as my partner. True, I knew about gays and lesbians, but I didn't understand. Like many 11 and 12 year olds I thought I knew it all not realizing through my ignorance or 'arrogant presumption' that it was not something that was wrong. This was a situation that has caused me many problems.

So, getting back to the realization of what I was, the final piece to a puzzle was added probably at school. Manchester, the place I live is a city that supposedly has a 'thriving' (that's a quote, as I haven't found any evidence, and believe me I've been looking) queer culture. I find reports in the papers all the time about that latest 'queer' transformations that make this city a better place. What a load of shite that is. At my school, every day I hear people calling others 'fags' 'queers' 'shirt-lifters' and it hurts. It hurt me, and I didn't even realize why. Other lads in my form were going out with girls, had girlfriends (whatever this means at 12) but I wasn't. they would talk about how they wanted to get a blow-job of Plastic-Pam-Anderson, how they fancied some girl in 5th year, how such-and-such was a dog. I knew they meant what they were saying, but I couldn't see where they were getting these feelings from. Then, it hit me. Could I be gay? No, please don't make me gay. I don't want to be a queer. I want to be normal.

This felt like a plane had fallen out of the sky and hit me when it first came to mind. I hated that though, and I tried to push it to the back of my mind but it wouldn't budge. It stayed, and ironically, the more I tried to forget it, the larger it grew. It was insidious, in how it consumed all my waking moments. Days, weeks, months passed as I cried myself to sleep each night. I didn't want to be gay. I didn't want to disappoint my parents, I wanted to be part of the bigger picture.

I was at an end as to what to do. My mind was falling apart literally. This may seem sad, but my schoolwork dominated my life. I used it as a plow, clearing out my thoughts to the back of my head. Stress as I didn't have many friends. I pushed everyone out, even my family. I was consumed by a need to work. It was all that kept me sane. But, it finally got to be too much. I finally reached the end of the line about a year ago.

I had no friends, no one really gave two shits about what I did. Continual harassment at school about the way I acted, talked, my work, etc. finally got to me. I'd had enough.

On a Friday night, I sat there with a bottle of whisky, a glass tumbler and a bottle of Paracetomol. I was ready to die. No, I wasn't afraid of death, it was almost an 'ambition' to end it all. The only way out of this hell-hole was that bottle of tablets. Slowly, I poured the whisky and tipped about 30 tablets into my hand. As I was about to put the tablets into my mouth, something stopped me. Catholics may say it was a vision of God, but it was much deeper, as I don't even believe in 'God' as a Catholic. I don't see a need to explain something like this, it's more than I am willing to share, but, needless to say, I couldn't kill myself.

Of course nothing to top this event. I'd tried to end it all. Tried, but not failed. Something did hit me after this, I did have something to live for. A mixture of images came to me in what I could describe 'a vision of life'. This was the path to recovery. Now, for the first time in the past two years (this is now last September) I finally accepted that being Gay was not something that should make me ashamed. I was just 'different' to the majority of the world. This did give me fresh hope. I was finally realizing who I was, and this felt good.

Here I am, then at the end of my story. What you read above is 'bare bones', it tells you the basic outline. Next month I think I will look more on the subject of how music and film have affected my life. I don't mean the news by film, I mean titles like 'The Adventures Of Priscilla, Queen Of The Desert' which have had a real affect on the way I thought. Also, a person (you know who you are) has really helped me.

Well, that as they say is that. I'm done for this month. Please, please, please do mail me at because I need some queers to talk to! Also, please tell me what you thought of my effort.

Love all,

Neil (nknight@bigfoot.com)

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