There was always an underlying awareness of my sexual attraction to men even as a young boy, however I always chose to ignore and repress any such feelings. Although many an opportunity presented itself during which I would have been allowed to explore this part of myself, such as during my numerous traveling expeditions, right up to men actually pursuing me, I always rather chose and decided that mentally this was a dimension to myself that I would prefer not to explore in reality.
I would describe my pursuit of understanding my sexuality as a roller coaster ride, the initial gradual and tedious climb up the slope that seems to take forever, followed by a ride filled with twisting and jerking movements, that deep in your stomach nausea and frightening the willing participants and leaving them with the question as to why they got on in the first place.
For me my ride has been an extremely slow progression of events that has taken me to the place that I am now. As a child I went through the normal exploration of not only my own individual body, but often looking at friends in the change rooms etc followed by a sense of guilt and repulsion. The first time that I fully became aware of my intrigue in the male body was when I was 21, I walked into a porn shop in London and I found that the male covers of the porn magazines were catching my eye, although I was never brave enough to ever go over and actually look through them, but something inside of me stirred.
My progression from that point happened simultaneously with the development of the Internet and technology, right from dialing in to view very basic gay porn sites, to the now sophisticated online camming with people from around the world. I then found my progression bringing me onto a local gay "meet up" website, from which my pursuit and progression changed from one of fantasy to one of reality.
When this all started for me I was already dating my wife, and although I was confused by my sexual emotions, I was convinced that this was a part of myself that did not require exploring beyond the cyber world, I was to be right for the next 12 years. Despite believing that I would be able to remain sexually and emotionally drawn to women I would often would find myself asking her, "but how do you know you love me?", and "what does love really feel like?"
I could see the absolute goodness in my wife, I loved not only how she made me feel, but how she cared and loved me, she spoilt me by tending to my every whim. The then fear and lack of proper understanding of my emotions overcame me and I proceeded to try and break up with her. I recall her looking at me with such torment and pain in her eyes as she grabbed onto my leg unwilling to let go until I reconsidered. Reconsider I did, and as they say in Hollywood the rest is history.
Today my wife and I have what many would describe as a perfect life and i would even tend to agree, but what happens when the perfect life is not the life that you think you want?
Today I am not only aware of what love feels like , but I know with full certainty that I am in love with my wife. In loving her I do have worries and concerns for her, I worry whether in the future I will be able to fulfill her needs, I worry about my ability to not only give her what she wants, but more so that I am deserving of her and I fear that I am holding her back from what could be a more fulfilling life with someone else. Most of all I worry about being a committed husband, not only in the monogamous sense, but in an emotional sense as well, causing her to feel not only caged, but bringing her into the closet with me.
I now wonder if she "kicked me out", gave up hope on us and chose to move on with her life without me, if this would not be easier. There would be no further expectations of me, and I would lose a measure of my ability to hurt her beyond the damage that I have already done.
Unfortunately this is not a situation where I can just close my eyes endure the discomfort and wait for the ride to end, I have to much at stake, I need to be certain that I steer through the sharp turns and bends to ensure that my passengers are looked after, especially the kids.
I often have wondered where our lives would be today had she let go of my leg all that time ago, but that was not meant to be our destiny, the only question now is wether it is fair for us to continue holding onto each other.
Although it feels like I am on a roller coaster ride, I can tell you this is no amusement park.
In the words of Franklin P. Jones "Love doesn't make the world go round. Love is what makes the ride worthwhile."