Tuesday, September 10, 2013

That one time I called Jonathan Knight cute... or was it Jordan?

I can't remember what I had for dinner last night, yet this story is still quite vivid in my mind.  I don't think I'll ever forget it.  It happened during elementary school.  New Kids on the Block was THE band.  The One Direction of the late 80s.  "The Right Stuff" is now going through my head.  It was also the time for jean jackets.  A cool thing for the girls was to have bright, colorful pins on the jacket.  You were just the bomb diggity if you had these pins attached to your clothing.

I remember one girl came to school with a new set of pins - one for each member of New Kids.  During recess, all the girls were ogling over each member of the band commenting on their hotness.  Well, I wanted to play this game!  I joined in, pointed at Jonathan (or Jordan) Knight and said, "He's cute."  Oops.  Big mistake.

It was the first time I had heard the word "gay."  Why am I being called "gay?"  Was does this "gay" mean?   It wasn't the best feeling in the world, so I knew I did something wrong.  So I kept it quiet.  For years.  Along the way, I'll learn (probably in church) that being gay IS wrong.  So I kept it quiet.  For years.  Never told a single soul.

It's funny (and ironic?) I still remember this story so many years later.  It was the moment I knew I was different - and I had a long road ahead of me.  And it all started with Jonathan freakin' Knight.. or Jordan.  (I'd like to THINK it was Jonathan, since he's the gay one, and my gaydar was in full swing at such a young age.)  :)  

While the road of life was long, it wasn't horrible.  I wasn't bullied (except for a few rough patches in Junior High, but who wasn't made fun of in the 7th grade?!) And I've never thought about suicide.  Life, for the most part, has been good and I'm extremely blessed.  However, I now read about others' experiences of being bullied and suicidal thoughts, and my heart breaks.  I really wish I could reach out in anyway possible and help those going through difficult times.  Please contact me if you need to.

Sheesh.  I was hoping this blog could be a nice, organized timeline, but I jumped from elementary school to the present in just a few paragraphs.  Maybe by the 4th or 5th blog post I'll have this all figured out.


  1. Having finally come out to myself in recent months, I have been trying to figure out if I was really "born this way" as you say you were in your Q&A. Well, I know I was born this way, but what I mean is that I am struggling to remember any times I actually felt attraction at younger ages. Most of the things I'm remembering were just weird things I did that made people think I was girly... but not necessarily gay. Anyway, I guess I'm just saying I can't point to a vivid memory like this where I first encountered gaydom.

    1. Hey Graham! Everyone's different. Some people have such vivid memories of their childhood and some can't remember the past as well (or they try to block it out of their minds.) Glad you're accepting yourself. Keep me posted on your journey.