8Sep/120

The Face of Gay 8 (Anonymous as Scott)

RECOVERED

Has anyone ever told you–as someone has me–that no matter how difficult you think you have it, somebody somewhere has it worse? There’s a definite ring of truth to that with today’s post. I’ve had drama in my life. My friends have had drama in theirs. People I only know through social media and e-mail have theirs. That being said, I don’t know anyone who went through the experiences Scott here has. I’m sure they’re out there, but they’ve remained silent. Scott remained silent…until now.

This is one of those rare times I don’t feel one of my regular introductions is even necessary. I will tell you, however, that I cried after reading this. And whatever your reaction to this Face of Gay, I hope you’ll leave a comment for the author at the bottom. He’ll be reading them throughout the day.

Finally, if you have a story of your own that you’d like to share, please let me know. I don’t have anything lined up beyond today’s.

The Face of Gay 8 (Anonymous as Scott)

Hi, my name is Scott (not my real name, but it’s still a good name). I see myself as many things and gay just happens to be one of them. I want to be very clear, this NOT a poor me story. I know that everyone has their own issues and hurdles to overcome, and these are some of my obstacles. It is with an open-heart that I share with you, and I hope you read this with an open mind.

I guess I should tell you that I am a “big” guy. I am about 300 pounds. Even as a child I was on the larger side, but as a young child I guess I never noticed. I was happy and carefree. I guess being a little “chubby” back then wasn’t a big deal to me, but when my MAJOR weight started adding up was between 6th and 7th grades. I was 13 years old and puberty is a wicked time, but I also had a secret. I had known I was gay for years; I believe we are born gay and I was ok with myself. At the time it was just feelings of, “I’m pretty sure I like boys and not girls, and WOW George Michael is cute,” but someone suspected that I was having those thoughts and feelings and decided they were going to show me how to act on them. I didn’t realize what was going to happen next until it was too late.

I was trapped and made to feel disgusting and shameful. He said if I told anyone I would be disowned. “You’ve already done it once, and you better keep doing it unless you want me to tell everyone, and then you’ll be all alone. Nobody will want you.” I believed these lies and it escalated into, “If you want to see your friends you’ll do this,” and then when I became so withdrawn that I had no friends it became, “If you want to see your Grandma you’ll do this.” I was trapped until I was 17 years old.

Years later I saw a therapist. She told me that I must have enjoyed it because otherwise I would have stopped it. I have always been shocked by that statement, because of all people, a therapist should know the control/fear issues associated with sexual abuse. I refused to see myself as a victim because I would not let it have that much power over me. I had come to terms with it, and in many ways it broke me down, but I didn’t let it destroy me.

My 20’s and most of my 30’s I was determined to find someone who would love me. I was looking for my soul mate. Unfortunately, all I found was rejection. After each rejection came another “nobody loves me” pity party and they were ALWAYS catered by Little Caesar or Hungry Howie’s. Food became my replacement for a boyfriend. It gave me an excuse. I told myself that I was single because I was fat, and that any man worth having would see past my weight and see me for the person I was inside. That man never showed up. Again, I had been broken down, but still not destroyed.

Over the last few years I’ve lost some very important people in my life, I’ve been told some very hurtful things, and I’ve been treated almost as if I’m less than human. It’s a double edged sword when you’re gay AND fat. It’s strange to me, but sometimes it seems as if people think fat is a shield or a buffer and they can say or do anything they want without consequence. The person I called my “best friend” for over 17 years told me one night, “Unless you plan on losing about 100 pounds you better start enjoying being alone because gay men have standards, and unless they are drunk or on drugs, cute guys don’t go for fat guys.”

I feel withdrawn and I’ve lost my way in life. I’m no longer the fun person I once saw in the mirror. I stopped loving myself. I feel like I don’t deserve to be loved. I’m tired and just wanting to feel better physically, emotionally, and spiritually. I’m damaged, completely broken, and destroyed.

Who would have thought that after surviving 5 years of sexual abuse, that loneliness would be my breaking point?

The Previous 5 entries in the Face of Gay Series:

The Face of Gay 3 (James Taylor Jr.)
The Face of Gay 4 (Tom)
The Face of Gay 5 (Patricia Logan)
The Face of Gay 6 (Sue Brown)
The Face of Gay 7 (Danny)

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Original Responses

Dorien says:
September 8, 2012 at 7:56 am
Not much anyone can say in response to this, Kage. I can only wish “Scott” the happiness he deserves and is fully entitled to.

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Karen says:
September 8, 2012 at 9:06 am
I’m a bigger person like Scott and I can identify with that portion. You are made to feel like a second rate citizen for being a larger person. In a world full of the “perfect” people no seems to want to be around others who don’t fit that view.

You do become withdrawn because you feel out place and awkward. I tend not to go out so people wont gawk or say ugly things, because like Scott said, people are mean and think nothing will hurt us when they say snide comments and horrible things right to your face.

I lost most of my friends since I don’t want to go out and do anything. It is a double edged sword since all you do when you’re home is eat. I cant imagine also being gay as well to alienate you from others also.

Scott, there are other out there who feel the same way. You’re not alone. I use Facebook to talk to people so I don’t feel so alone. People get to know me there 1st and I have some great friendships now. I plan on going to GRL and I’m scared because everyone will see a bigger person and not me anymore but its time. Maybe I can come out of my shell enough to do something.

I wish you the best Scott and hope one day you are able to feel better about yourself and someone sees the person inside. Don’t give up hope. They’re out somewhere. We just have to put ourselves out to find them. Not the easiest thing but we can do it! Best wishes

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sue laybourn says:
September 8, 2012 at 9:19 am
I don’t think I have the words.
“Scott” I’m so sorry. I wish you joy and happiness. No one should have to endure what you’ve had to deal with.
Hugs to you.
xxx

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Victor J. Banis says:
September 8, 2012 at 9:21 am
Scott, I don’t know where you live, but I lived for years in San Francisco and I can tell you for certain there are many gay men there who really – I mean, really – like oversized guys. I know one very intelligent and well off gentleman with 2 such boyfriends, one of them surely about your weight (I’m not very good at guessing, but definitely a “plus size.”) So, maybe the solution for you is to start thinking about relocating. Is that a possibility? I’m sure S.F. isn’t the only such city, it’s just the only one I am familiar with, but I’m guessing there are chubby-chasers in most big cities. Have you read Rick Reed’s recent novel, Chaser? I haven’t but that is the subject matter – maybe it will help. And I’m guessing there are probably online groups of such devotees. I think you are just not looking in the right places to find guys who will find you beautiful.

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Kayelle Allen says:
September 8, 2012 at 9:29 am
Sexual abuse is never the victim’s fault. Take that therapist’s logic across the board and you see its fallacy. You must’ve allowed yourself to get the flu because you enjoyed it. You must’ve allowed yourself to be robbed because you enjoyed it. You must’ve allowed your car to be stolen because you enjoyed it. That’s like the “when guns are outlawed, only outlaws will have guns” argument. Apply that to anything else and its fallacy immediately becomes obvious. When bubblegum is outlawed, only outlaws will have bubblegum. When Bibles are outlawed, only outlaws will have Bibles. When you look at this kind of logic, it’s so obviously wrong it’s (almost) laughable.

Scott, the past is just that. It’s past. You have today and you hope for tomorrow. No matter what happened before, go forward. Refuse to let the past overtake you. You can’t lose a pound a day. Weight comes off tiny bits at a time, and it takes a long period of work for it to show. I know, I’ve reduced my weight by over 80 lbs – gained 40 – lost 20 – and redone it all again. It’s frustrating, time consuming, and has its discouraging moments, but the rewards are there too. You have to keep going forward and not look back. Create a dream you can strive for, and don’t let anyone steal it. You are the only one who can hold yourself back. You are worthy of being loved, especially loved by yourself. I wish you all the best.

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Kiernan Kelly says:
September 8, 2012 at 10:51 am
Scott, the abuse you suffered is heartbreaking to hear, and I’m so sorry you had to go through it alone. That you survived is a testament to your fortitude and inner strength.

First and foremost, you must believe that you ARE beautiful. I can tell just from the sweetness and kindness of your post. Although you were brutalized and isolated as a child, your words aren’t hateful or angry (which, btw, you have every right to be). That says something about your character. It says you are a survivor, a compassionate soul, and a sweet man with a lot to offer.

In addition, just because someone has a degree and a license to practice does not make them a good — or even adequate — therapist. The one you saw should be horsewhipped. Find another one. Keep shopping them until you find one you strike a chord with, someone you’re comfortable with, who understands that you were the victim.

Please don’t feel that you are unlovable. You have a lot to offer, and if others haven’t been able to see that yet, it’s more their loss than yours. The right person is out there, waiting. You only need to find him. Sometimes the most precious gem is the one most deeply buried.

*hugs*

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Sara York says:
September 8, 2012 at 11:24 am
Scott, I grew up in a family where we were told that people who aren’t beautiful are a waste of space and should die so the beautiful people feel more comfortable, followed up with “now Sara, you are ugly and fat and unless you lose weight you will never find a husband who will want to stay with you.”

Needless to say the demons were there, striking hard. What I’ve found to be true is the opposite. Everyone has worth. Size of body doesn’t matter, but size of heart does. Learn to love yourself. If there is something you don’t love, work to change it, not because of some outside force or to please others, but for you because you are worth it.

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Tom says:
September 8, 2012 at 3:59 pm
Scott,

I almost have no words.

I’m a big man too – it just gets defined as bear sometimes. But I am a fat guy. Same issues – young, chubby and knew I was gay. Hid it forever, and knew all the handsome men were into other good looking men.

Guess I was lucky – I stumbled onto the Girth and Mirth group and the Bear clubs here in Atlanta. But make no mistake, at EVERY Pride or other event, I feel people’s eyes on me and trust me, it’s not in a “gosh, you’re cute and I want you” way. It’s in a judgmental, “why don’t you lose weight” and “what the fuck do you think you are doing here way”.

That therapist? Should lose her fucking license. NOBODY asks to be abused. NOBODY. It’s a crime, it’s horrible and it’s the abuser’s responsibility, fault and sickness. NOT YOURS. I want to strangle the person who abused you, and I want to take out that….fucking moron who told you you had a part in it. FUCK THAT.

I’m sorry. You need a friend, you have one. In me. Whatever you need. Contact Kage and if you want, he will give you my information, or just PM me on Facebook or whatever way you want, but please, you only have to to reach out and I will take your hand.

Please. You are NOT alone.

Tom

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Katherine T. says:
September 8, 2012 at 4:58 pm
Scott, what struck me most about your post (and you) is the courage, kindness of heart and beauty of soul in the person that is you. I identified with the abuse you suffered as a child and was horrified by the magnitude of it. I knew sexual abuse as a child by a stranger (nowhere near the extent of yours) so I understand how it can mess with not only your mind but you image of self, as well. The fact you had the strength and courage to still believe in who you were as a person and leave the hate and anger behind shows me the kind heart and depth of soul you have as a person. You are a strong and loveable person. DO NOT ever forget that. PLEASE!!
As far as friends – if they are true ones, they love you for who you are and stand by you always. If they don’t, they never deserved someone as wonderful as you in the first place.
As far as being gay and finding a partner, my feeling about friends applies here, too. If they are so shallow as to dismiss you because you don’t fit their image, their loss. You deserve better than that. You will find love one day, and probably when you least expect it.
You’ve got a friend here, if you ever need to chat. I’d be happy to have a friend as kind and courageous as you.
Thanks for sharing your story. I’m sure it will help someone else who may have gone through similar circumstances.
And lastly–your abusers (the molester and the therapist) are complete asshats in my book. They deserve worse name calling than that, but it’s not fit to print.
Onward and upward, my friend. I believe in you.

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Erica Pike says:
September 8, 2012 at 5:32 pm
God, Scott… I just want to reach back in time and save you. I really wish I could. No one can go through something like that and come out of it peachy. It’s admirable that you try not to let it break you, but I hope you also understand that it wasn’t your fault and it’s okay to feel angry about what was done to you. I agree with Kiernan, don’t give up on psychologists just because one of them got their license from a cereal box. Therapy won’t change the past, but it can help with the future (even though you have to rehash bad things – It’s never easy).

Like Victor and Karen said, there are people many who see past outer appearances. I’m one such person. I won’t let outer appearances stop me if I like the other person. Sure, I like looking at Channing Tatum, but I also think Jack Black’s one of the sexiest actors out there, and I’d love to spend a day with Ben Stiller. Fat or thin, big or small, I and many other people won’t let that stop us from befriending/loving a person.

I know having online friends isn’t the same as having “real life” friends, but online friends have given me so much more than real life friends have. Okay, so you can’t go out and do things together, but you get to know people on a much more personal level. You can also have fun with them, goofing around on facebook and such, so it’s not all serious talk.

I encourage you to take Tom’s hand. Tom’s a great guy, kind and funny. If you want to get to know more people, I’d love to talk. You can find me on facebook under Erica Pike, or if you want to talk through emails, just let Kage know and I’m sure he’ll contact me for you. Maybe we’ll click, maybe we won’t, but I can promise that I’ll treat you the same as I treat every other person: respectfully and without judgement.

For now, all I can give you is a cyber hug, and hope that you’ll be happy in the future. Being so broken is a horrible situation. I’ve been there myself, but I haven’t been through a fraction of what you’ve been through, so I can’t even imagine…

*Hugs*

Erica

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Kage says:
September 8, 2012 at 6:30 pm
I received this from Scott a short time ago and he asked that I share it with you all.

“First off … THANK YOU KAGE ! ! ! Thank you for giving me a voice today. Thank you for letting me share my heart and soul. Thank you for believing that my story was worth hearing.

Dorien, Karen, Sue Laybourn, Victor J. Banis, Kayelle Allen, Kiernan Kelly, Sara York, Tom, and Katherine T –

Thank you for all the kind words and well wishes. I am feeling very good after reading the responses to my entry. I feel like my words were heard today … I battled with myself about sending this entry. After I wrote it; I felt very dark. I had not let myself open up to my raw emotion and “feel” those things for a long time. They were always there, but it had been many years since I had really tapped into, and addressed, the real feeling behind my sorrow, loneliness, depression, and regret. I battled my inner demons that were telling me, “people are going to think you are just weird” and went back and forth deciding if I would actually send my story out there. I’m glad I did ! ! ! It feels amazing to put my words out there, and know that there is a little HOPE out there afterall. Thank you all from the bottom of my “not quite so broken afterall” heart.”

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Katherine T. says:
September 8, 2012 at 7:30 pm
Scott-
Isn’t it a nice surprise to find that there is still kindness and goodness in the world? That not everyone in the world will judge a book by it’s cover, but will actually look at the contents inside? Those people are the “keepers” in this world. Count yourself one of those. A true gem. 🙂

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Giselle Frank says:
September 9, 2012 at 4:43 am
Dear Scott,

I am so glad you wrote this letter. You really show an incredible strength and I reckon your words hold out hope of survival and fortitude to anyone who might have something bad happen to them, past or future. You can be really proud of yourself about how you handle yourself and that you are able to put your words, and with that yourself, out here for others to see.
I think your letter is amazing and I admire you so much for your courage! You know, the thing you do when you’re shit-scared and you do it anyway, that’s courage and you’ve got it.

I am so sorry that you had the appalling misfortune to run into this “therapist”. Needless to say she isn’t one, she’s a power hungry individual who should lose her licence (so sorry, reading your letter makes me spitting mad, how dare she!!). If you ever feel that you would benefit from talking to someone then please keep looking for a proper professional who is worthy of the word. If you don’t feel like talk therapy there is also another avenue: it’s more about coaching and motivation about life skills (can’t think of better phrasing, sorry). Someone who helps you identify goals and supports you in developing strategies to get there. And that someone again needs to be a person you get on with (VERY important!) as well as someone worthy of the word therapist, or coach.

I don’t know if you want advice about weight and food and all those things? I’m really sorry I can’t resist to get my two cents’ worth in. I apologise.

You may want to think about and research this for insights that help you, you know the stuff that’s useful because it’s meaningful to you. You don’t have to be slim to be happy (did studies show that curvy people are actually happier than the super slim ones? I seem to remember something like that), and you probably want to focus on being as healthy as possible. Health and happiness is closely linked. The wrong kinds of food can affect our mood and mental state a lot. When your food intake is out of whack you don’t get the vitamins, minerals, trace elements, enzymes and goodness knows what else that your body needs. Because of that you eat more to try and solve the food deficiencies. Even though you consume a high quantity you are still starving. All quite a vicious cycle you need to break out of.

I reckon that the way to go is slow, gradual change. I used to think of healthy food as grated carrots and seeds, and not enough of it to be full. Boy, did I do a number on myself with that idea! Ridiculous. Took me a while to realise.

A varied, balanced diet can affect metabolism, mood, digestion, sleep, body shape, and all sorts of things that make life heck loads better. I would encourage you to try out fresh foods that you haven’t had in a long time to try and figure out what you might like once you ate if a few times. It’s not easy to do and quite scary as all change is.

When you can change the way you feel about yourself and once you start to feel a touch more optimistic about the future, your demeanour changes and people start to act differently towards you than they have. You may want to look into what kinds of things you like in terms of hobbies or interests. Please only do this on a day when you feel positive or it makes you feel like life will never change for the better. But playfully exploring what you might like gives you a chance to consider actually pursuing new things. Or resurrect and dust down something you haven’t looked at doing for a long time.

But the most difficult thing about change is how to start. Guess what? You’ve already done that bit. You wrote this letter and you allowed it to be out there. You’re already on the way to your better life. Be assured that this is a really good thing.

Online friends is a good thing too, engaging online is a great way to gather courage about interacting with people in real life. I’m not too fond of Facebook (I tend to only be friends with the people I already know) but I love Google+ because it gives you the chance to interact with people (and even get to know them) who you would otherwise never know. Please look me up, I’d love to talk with you!

I’m sorry that I am so driven to doling out advice (I can’t seem to help myself) but I do hope that something/anything I said might be useful and beneficial to you. I think that loneliness is so destructive and soul-destroying because it leads you to fear that things will never change. That’s not true. Your change has already started. Please keep reaching out to people, to us, to people who care. You’re someone who cares too and you’ve got a lot to give.

Let’s talk on Google+ if you feel like it? My avatar is the cartoon face.

Reply
Patricia Logan says:
September 9, 2012 at 1:19 pm
Dearest Scott,

I love your heart. It’s easy to tell from your heartfelt post just exactly what type of person you are. I have suffered from being overweight most of my life until I had a radical surgery eight years ago. Now, I suppose you would think of me as average.

During the years when I couldn’t stand to look at myself in the mirror and after the birth of each child, which just made things worse and then hitting my forties when my metabolism slowed to the point that I became hopeless, I really hated myself. Of course, I could see the looks of disgust in the eyes of others… hell, I live in SoCal beach country where everyone is blonde and beautiful and those who aren’t… are me.

I’ve now hit my fifties and I look back and throw up my hands and say “who cares?” I have family and friends who love me for who I am. It’s what’s inside that counts and you have that. As important as your post is, so are the responses that you’ve gotten. There is a lot of support, an overwhelming sense of love and most importantly… acceptance of you for who you are.

When you lay your head down tonight and cuddle your pillow close until it’s replaced by that amazing guy, you remember that you are loved and prince charming is out there and guess what? He’s looking for you too!

XO Patti

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