I CONFESS: Same-sex union works for me
I STARTED DATING men when I was in my late teens and felt comfortable about it.
Indeed, I was often told how attractive I was and felt good about the compliments. Then I went overseas and had a serious relationship with a guy who was studying at the same college I attended.
I felt as if marriage was in the air. He took me to his home and I met his family; he also met mine. But this was not to be a happily-ever-after ending as he left college two days before his final examinations and went to another city.
There he moved in with another girl who was also on campus with us. They had obviously found love; they got married and started a family.
Since that episode while studying overseas, I have had at least three other relationships with guys; older men, much older men and a younger man. It has been an experience, yet they all add up to the same – unable to satisfy me. And I’m not speaking about sex, but my emotional well-being and even any spiritual satisfaction – if such can be found in a relationship.
One of my problems may just be my desire for what I see as the good life. You don’t live twice and I believe you should make the most and the best of your time. So I have been accused of mixing with and pushing up myself to those better off and the movers and shakers in society. People would refer to them as the “in crowd”.
I have just turned 45 and need to do some serious introspection on my life. Much to my parents’ sorrow, I will not have any children of my own and I am not going to get married to Mr Right. But I need courage to proceed with where I really want to go with my life in this small society that can be harsh and even destructive.
I have a relatively good job and don’t want to destroy my career as I want to maintain my independence. I have a nice house, a vehicle and most of the material things one would aspire to own. I can travel at least twice a year and enjoy fine dining and nice clothing. But I want more. I want the freedom of association without the backlash of the moral majority and those who would want to live my life.
Some years ago I became friends with a woman who helped me in many ways. It wasn’t long before we became attracted to each other and had a passionate “fling twice” before I left to pursue my graduate studies overseas.
I was shocked when she turned up to visit me; but was grateful for that visit. It was cold and lonely and she brought just the stuff I wanted, took me to dinner and we went a number of places together.
The companionship, the interest in my studies and the warmth did not bypass me. We made love and spent an unforgettable week together. On my return to Barbados we picked up where that week ended and maintained a very close relationship for a while.
I eventually found her to be no different from the men I had previously dated –untrustworthy and unfaithful. She was always on the prowl for other women and was an abuser, both physically and emotionally.
I decided to move on and found myself back in a relationship with a man, but that did not last. I got fed up and decided to end it. I found myself looking at and being interested in other women. Indeed, I went into a relationship with a woman whom I would not ordinarily have looked at or considered as a lover.
She was rough, had a colourful background and did not worry about anyone or anything. It was an eye-opener for me. The one thing I appreciated while with her was commitment. I moved on and decided to just focus on my work, on getting my house in the best condition and on doing a number of personal things.
While doing business I met a professional woman, two years younger than I, who started talking to me. She invited me to lunch, we went out for drinks for a few weekends, we had dinner and we went driving around.
We had a kiss and that was the start of a relationship of which I feel confident and proud and to which I am committed. She too seems to have similar feelings. But we live in a prying society and a hateful community.
As a professional working in a small office, she is uncertain what the reaction will be if we move in together. I know the gossip, anger and hatred that would spring up where I am. And neither of our parents would accept or tolerate our same-sex relationship at this time.
In recent times I have been going out publicly with my partner and feel confident to be seen with her.
I want to be open enough to talk about my true attraction to her and to let our parents know. Her sister knows and welcomes us. She has opened her home for us on two recent trips overseas.
I don’t want to continue having two sets of friends, two stories and a messy life. I am normal, not straight, nor gay and don’t want to live a lie and in a closet.
Some of the people in my office and those around me may suspect that I have a woman as my lover, but they are respectful in front of me. They may talk my name behind my back, but that achieves nothing. They will stare at me every day as they will my lover.
Someone recently told me of a group where a number of woman in same-sex relationships hang out and bond. That may be good and can help get you through difficult times. But I want to be respected for my honest sincere decisions. And yes, we want to continue going to church. The only difference is – we want to do so together.
I must confess this relationship is about true love.