A little over a year ago, I made an acquaintance who turned into a friend. We’d see each once in a while and talk or text. In time we spent more time together. Phone calls became longer and more frequent; we spent lots of one on one time together. All these long hours together, talking, eating, laughing, enjoying one another. It blossomed and bloomed into an intimate relationship. We were each others confidant. We shared stories about pain of the past, life in the present and what we’d like our futures to be. It was open, honest and refreshing for me to have someone like that be apart of my life.
My friend offered me companionship, friendship, fellowship and good company. He showed me compassion. He seemed genuinely concerned for my feelings and well-being as I was for him. He was so very creative. That help to keep this relationship fresh. Although he would never admit it, he was committed to this relationship.
I am gay, he is not. It’s what made this relationship so special. He had the ability and determination to take the time to get to know me, be excepting of my life, not judging this book by its cover. I wasn’t not expecting love at first sight, or perfection or total agreement. I was looking for all the things he offered and I loved him for it. I told him I loved him. Maybe I shouldn’t have but I’m very honest with my feelings. Once I was that open, things changed.
My feeling are not about sex. There was a time when sex was the way I filled the empty void left by past pain. I’ve grown and that is no longer the case. I look to fill that void with positive relationships. He quelled my loneliness and that’s why I love him. It’s simple, not sexual. Now I won’t lie and say we never spoke about sex. Our conversations could be rather randy. He would say things that were very homoerotic and I would call him to task about it. What straight man says, “The wind is blowing so hard, I feel like I’m being fucked in the throat.”? Or all the innuendoes about me sleeping with other men. I told him he had some repressed issues. He said “not at all.” I would make jokes about having sex with him. He laugh it off. I told him it was like we were dating but having sex with other people. He told it to his now ex-girlfriend. Honestly, it was like dating. We went out exclusively with each other. There were never any other friends or acquaintances. Just me and him late at night when couples were out coupling. There was this one time he felt the need to proclaim to a waitress the he was not gay. It’s not like she asked. That annoyed me but I let it go. I thought maybe my sexuality was an issues. When we were out together, most people thought we were a couple. It didn’t seem to bother him because never shied away from going out with me. That’s commitment.
Bad things happen in our past that shape who we became. Now I will not betray anyones trust so I can’t get into those things. What I will say is this: I am very secure with the attachments I form with people. If I have real love for you, I’m more comfortable with someone depending on me and I’m equally comfortable depending on them. I am very open, trusting and understanding with them. It’s how you treat someone you love. If a problem occurs, we work it out.
Unfortunately, the case is not the same for my friend. His circumstance caused him to become closed off, dismissing. He will downplay his emotions. In fact, he says he has none. He is uncomfortable with intimacy. I gathered that from things he’s said about past relationships. Yet he somehow managed to form an intimate relationship with me. He walks around as this big, tall, strong guy who is invincible. Its his way of not feeling vulnerable, but deep inside there is a hurt little boy. I know all to well as a hurt little boy lives in me.
So how did such a great thing go left? I’m a mean drunk. I asked him to come out to the bar with me the other night. We went, had some drinks and talked. I was already feeling bad so maybe drinking wasn’t such a good idea. I was feeling depressed and wanted to be with the person that makes me feel not so alone. We got on the topic of my feelings at the bar. He started to tell me the real person I loved was someone from long ago. Although I told him all about this person, I felt it was a low blow to bring up the subject. Especially since he was using it has a way to dismiss my feelings towards him. I didn’t get mad, I listened. So we leave the bar and as he enters my car he said, “I’m not gay.” My reply, “You never listen to me. My feeling for you have nothing to do with sexuality. I love you because I don’t feel so alone with you.”
Early in the evening, he asked if I wanted to go to a party with a couple of his friends. I was somewhat reluctant but I was gonna go. I drove part of the way, but was clearly in no position to be driving. I got out to pee, he drove. When we reached the destination, he inform me he was leaving me to go “fuck” some girl. That didn’t sit well with me. How could he go out with me and just leave me like that? I needed my friend. I had spent hours upon hours listening to him when he was down. Three hour phone calls in the middle of the night, talking in the car till the wee hour when I had to be to work early. Tonight, that what I needed. It’s not what I got. So I said “Fuck You” and drove off drunk, alone.
When someone hurts me, I lash out. I have more restraint when I’m sober. I was full of liquid courage. I won’t even tell you what I texted him. It hurts me just to read it. It was awful. Two day of no returned phone calls or text. Meanwhile, I was crying uncontrollably because my depression had spiraled out. Nothing but feeling worthless, empty, unfulfilled, despair. Fortunate for me, two beautiful women helped me through it all.
Today I went to see him in person. I asked if we could talk and he obliged. He told me that he didn’t think we should see each other anymore. He said I acted “weird” the other night. I’m like “While I was drunk. You’re gonna hold that against me?” He also cited things in the text message. He told me he didn’t need me and he never did. He never had to talk to me. I told him I felt like how he left me was not cool and that if that was this way of letting me know he wasn’t gay; it was nice. Then he brought up some of the things I mentioned early like the “Dating” as an issue. All of a sudden he was no longer comfortable around me. That was the end of that.
I ran behind him as he walked away. I had one more thing to say. I told him, for what it was worth, he was a good friend to me and I would forget that. And maybe in time we could be friends again. I shook his hand and walked away.
I understand what part I played in this. Simply put, I hurt his feeling. He can’t admit that. That text was a harsh version of the truth. I was very wrong for sending it. When you get close to someone, you know when they’re hurting. It showed on his face. That hurt me even deeper.
Saying I love you only made that closeness a reality. This society looks down on intimate male relationships. When men are close, it must be sexual and that’s a no no. He couldn’t have that. I gave him all the ammo to push me away. Our intimacy give us a both a great deal of support personally and professionally. He let his guard down for a moment and was free to feel. So all those feelings of lack of support, issues with health, or that dissatisfaction life wasn’t so hard to deal with. We leaned on each other. He told me he never needed me, he never had to talk to me. My phone records tell a different story. All those nights together were not forced on him. We were both where we wanted to be; with each other. Why couldn’t we work out the problem? He wanted to distance himself from this relationship; from his feelings for me. Guess what? He cared about me too.
I love him with all that said. I am hurt more for him than for myself. You see, as much as I say I love him, I love me more.
For all the good qualities that made him such a great person in my eyes, the one that he lacked is courage. The courage to face a relationship problem head on and work to resolve it. Not treat a person as if he is a disposable item to be discarded. When he realizes he is worthy to be love, that will change. He may not agree with any of this but it’s how I see it.
Tomorrow, I have an appointment to see my therapist. It is my courage that allows me to forge head and work on healing myself. I know I am worthy of being loved. I will find someone to share love with and let my loneliness dissipate.
… This is titled Nuclear Fallout because I asked him to give me a topic to write about. Creative. Didn’t imagine it would be about him…