Wednesday, June 22, 2011

Just Because One is Gay

One of the fun things we bloggers can do is view the stats of our blogs.  Among those is a stat that tells me how many pageviews my blog receives per day (an average of one hundred to one hundred fifty, over a twenty-four hour period). They also tell me in what countries those page views took place (from all over the world, some you would not expect, such as Saudi Arabia, Russia, and China). And they tell me which posts receive the most attention (varies from one day to the next).

An additional stat I receive under Traffic Sources is what search keywords people from around the world use to land them at my blog, on a post that may be useful to them.  Some of the search keywords I found recently were:  "vintage pictures of gay relationships," "strong gay men," and "become a gay person is good or bad?" Obviously, in the case of the last one, I see what's on people's minds, what they're interested in learning about during the quiet hours of their days.

Then I read the following search keywords:  "Is there anyone out there who would like to meet a nice gay man?"

Wow!  My heart broke when I saw that.  I read it several more times to digest everything in it. Then I decided to put those same search keywords into Google to see where my blog came up in the list of selections, and at what post.  It didn't work for me.  After pages and pages of options, I didn't see the name of my blog, so I couldn't be sure if the post that came up was helpful or not.

The reason why my heart broke is because I imagined someone, somewhere in the world, acknowledging he's a nice, or good, or decent gay person (and there's no reason why he shouldn't), feeling isolated and alone (emotions common to the gay and lesbian experience), and seeking help to remedy that situation (how many of us don't want to be with someone else?). And it was too easy for me to put myself back in his place, starting to build a sense of my own self-worth, after years of being derided, and needing to meet the right person for me.

What a shot in the dark.  "Is there anyone out there...?"  Anyone in the whole wide world, anyone at all, in any country?  Those search keywords could just as easily have originated from a young man--or, for that matter, an older man--in a major city, like London, or Sydney, or New York--where, presumably gay people are more accepted and better able to find each other--as a small town in the middle of the Canadian prairies, where homosexuality is not spoken about, except in negative terms, and where one believes one is the only gay person around for possibly hundreds of miles.

Whatever the case may be, gay men and women want the same thing non-gay men and women want.  They want to be seen.  They want to be heard.  And they want to know that what they say, and how they feel, and what they do, matter to someone.  In other words, they want to feel validated.  They want to know in their hearts that they mean something to someone, that their being here makes a difference.  And, of course, they want to be loved, which encompasses everything all together.    

It's not because people are gay that they want anything less than everyone else. Just because one is gay doesn't mean he doesn't have feelings or needs or desires.  Just because one is gay doesn't mean he doesn't want dignity and respect.  Just because one is gay doesn't mean he can't be hurt by the hurtful things said to and about him.  Just because one is gay doesn't mean he doesn't want to settle down with the person he loves, build a life, grow old together, and, yes, even get married.  Just because one is gay doesn't mean he doesn't want to worship a loving and compassionate and accepting God, not the God of many people who judge us.  

And it's not because people are gay that they should expect or settle for anything less.


  1. I know this feeling. Googling for words like “gay love”, “gay family”, etc. I know how it feels... in the middle of a night when I can not sleep and start to search youtube for clips about love just to get hope for myself. There are great videos on youtube about gay couples, true love, passion. My point is that people like you, Rick, who keep sharing love make us lonely people feel less lonely. It is like you save my little world by creating a safe place.
    Just today I sat in the park and read my favorite poet. It was a perfect moment. And to get to this moment I had to make decisions in the past. Put myself first, avoid people who I love to get this moment with myself. I am a selfish person because I need to be lonely and I push people I love further away to have these moments. Knowing me, I simply can not picture myself in a relationship with another human being, yet alone have a kid whose needs have to be primary. Lately I can not say “I will never fall in love” because I know I am no prophet. I can only live one day at a time and try to live this day to the fullest. Let everything what has to happen happen. At the same time, I need dreams. I need to have a possibility of a perfect future to get me threw hard times. These dreams are like a warm body of my lover. These dreams hug me to sleep at night.

    People are different, dreams are different, real life is even more rainbow-colored. Despite that, I think that we all need to share what helps us threw hard times, be there for another person (like you Rick have been for me and many others).

    I found a wonderful book by Jay Bell (“Something Like Summer”; A lovely gay story: growing up of a young and confident gay man who is taught all about life by trials of love. This book is about life, a great love story but has an unique freshness to it and delivers every emotion with perfectly chosen words to the reader. Jay Bell is a person who I discovered on youtube when I searched for something that would heal my loneliness. I found his videos. If you can't get the book, there is another good love story “Language Lessons” free at ( This is a short story about a young eye candy who has got every man he wants but stumbles to a guy whose primary desire is love.

    Spread the love!

  2. Receiving your comments, elevencats, is always a thrill. I want you to know that. I hope you know that.

    I feel inspired by your comment to write another post, which I'm formulating in my mind now. I hope you don't mind if I use some of what you've written, but I feel you speak for a lot of other gay people in your ambivalence about love. Perhaps I can write something that will be helpful. I can only hope that will be the case.

    I'm so grateful for your kind words. The fact I can help you, and other people like you, with nothing more than my words, to feel less lonely, safer, and supported, makes me feel so good about what I intend to do with my blog. I could not be paid a greater compliment.

    I'm afraid I haven't heard of Jay Bell before. But I took a brief look at his website, and I plan to see what I can find of his to read. I have no doubt your recommendation will be helpful to others looking to read the same type of material. Thanks for letting me and my readers know about him.

    As always, thanks for your ongoing interest in my blog and for taking the time to write a comment. Because I know what I write matters to readers like you, I feel the responsibility to treat this platform seriously and to be as helpful as I can. All I have is my own experience and views to draw on. I only hope they will be of use to others.

  3. I love hearing about the way your blog is reaching across the world, Rick, and was happy to see Eleven Cats comment, too! Glad to hear reading is helping, wouldn't be morning for me without a cup of coffee and a bit of reading...

  4. Hi, there. Long time no see.
    I almost forgot ur blog address, Rick. And it looks like you successfully redesigned its template. :)

    The keyword that u're talking about ("Is there anyone out there who would like to meet a nice gay man?") used to be my favorite keyword everytime I connected my PC to the internet.

    Like you said, I used to feel so much lonely and isolated by the fact that I'm gay. And internet was the only media that I could use to looking for another gay people out there. I was 15yo at that time. And i felt this desire, this need, to 'communicate' with another gay people. I wanted to know why I'm gay. I wanted to know how they survive. And so on. But, in the other hand, I wasn't brave enough to meet gay people physically. I was still a bit afraid of them. Because they looked different with the other men I've ever known. They dressed differently. They spoke differently. They had different body gestures. Especially the part where people said that they were related into AIDS.

    Even though i used "Is there anyone out there who would like to meet a nice gay man?" keyword, as long as I can remember, I never actually met a nice gay over that time. The keyword usually led me into Yahoo Messenger accounts of some old daddies who love newbie gays. I remembered that some of them persistently asked me to send them my nude pictures. I never gave them any, of course. But somehow, I still made them my friends because I just wanna had some friends. I imagined that someday i could talk to them everytime i felt so down. Because I think that only gay people who'll know how it feels like to be gay.

    Btw, i love the last two paragraph of this post. It's so sweet. :)

    *Sorry for the bad grammars whatsoever. :)

  5. @ Sarah: As always, so good to hear from you and to know you still drop by to catch up on what's going on.

    Yes, my blog gets a lot of international attention (more than I ever expected), but it certainly wouldn't hurt to get more. I'd be thrilled if my message got out to even more people and made a positive difference in their lives, too.

    But my blog and message are still fairly new. Sometimes, I see blogs with three hundred or more regular followers, and I wish I had that. Then I notice they've been around for six or more years. So I have a ways to go.

    But make no mistake--I appreciate all of my followers and readers. It's not the quantity but the quality, isn't it? And all of you have really helped to create a wonderful community that's a pleasure for everyone, especially me, to come back to.

    Many thanks to you, Sarah, and to everyone. Thanks for making what I write matter. I really appreciate it.

    @Aries Boy: What a thrill to hear from you again after so long. Please, don't lose my address. Be sure to bookmark it and to return often. It's always a pleasure to receive a comment from you.

    The Internet is truly amazing, isn't it? How I could have used it when I was much younger, had no friends, and really needed to connect with other people like me. But I'm not sure I would have had the courage. I didn't hold gay people in high esteem then, thinking they only wanted one thing, and I wasn't prepared to offer it just for companionship. I'm so glad you were careful, too, because you never know what kind of situation you might put yourself in. Always be safe. You owe that to yourself.

    I hope you know you always have friends here. No need to go all over the place if you just want to talk or reach out. And what you write doesn't have to relate to whatever post I've written either.

    You should also know I have a direct link to my email address at the top of my blog, so feel free to use it if you're not comfortable sharing your thoughts or feelings with everyone. I promise I will always respond to you.

    Thanks for your kind words about the last paragraph of this post, and don't worry about your grammar. My readers and I understand you just fine.

    Please drop by again soon. I love to hear from you.