About Nathan

Jan 6, 2009 / 16 Comments

Me
I love this photo, even with the gigantic piece of snow flying by my nose that looks like snot.

From the Beginning

Baby NathanI was born in 1981 in a small midwestern town. By the time I was in kindergarten, I knew I was “different.” I preferred to sit under a tree and draw instead of playing baseball with the other boys. Old Judy Garland movies were much more appealing than action packed “Rambo” films. Looking back, I had a really gentle spirit. I was friendly and soft-spoken with good intentions towards everyone.

Over time, I learned that I had to toughen up if I wanted to avoid getting beaten up every day in school. My teenage years were particularly rough for that very reason. My classmates constantly bullied me, both physically and mentally. When I tried to report it to adults, they just brushed it off as “boys will be boys.” There was no sympathy or protection. I remember being threatened with a pocket knife, only to be told by the principal that pocket knifes are “harmless.” Oh, and then there was the coach who said I “brought it onto myself by being so flamboyant.” Gee, thanks. I can’t help the way I was born.

Coming Out

I started dating guys at age 15 and came out at 16. My strict Catholic parents didn’t exactly respond with open arms. As for my classmates, I somehow fell under the impression that coming out would shut them up. Every day they asked me if I was gay. So I believed that admitting it would take away their power. It’s kind of like when the news media constantly harasses a celebrity because they are trying to get information. Once the celebrity admits it, there is a brief shit storm but it finally blows over and nobody cares anymore. I hoped the same thing would happen for me.

Unfortunately, that was not a well calculated move. Coming out only made things worse and then it all became an alienating experience from there. I was not just the only openly gay kid in my town, I was apparently the only openly gay kid in the entire state. I remember one time, I was communicating with a guy in an online chat room. He lived 3 hours away. When I told him where I was from, he said, “Oh, you must be Nathan. I’ve heard about you.” So much for anonymity.

My 20s

Obligatory iPhone mirror self portraitI don’t know how I survived my teenage years without being suicidal, or taking up drugs and alcohol. I have a very strong spirit, and even when I’m deeply depressed, the true optimist in me has a way of finding the light. After high school, I moved to the south and started a new life in college. I was a brave, confident, openly gay man and I made it clear to my peers that I wasn’t taking any attitude from anyone. I managed to make it through without one single incident of homophobia or discrimination. That was a welcome improvement over the environment I had grown up in.

I spent 8 years with a partner. There were some good times and some bad times, as with any relationship. But in March 2009, when some of his skeletons came pouring out of the closet, I finally realized that the bad outweighed the good and I just wasn’t onboard for it anymore. We had a really nasty, painful breakup, which also played out on my blog.

Daniel and the Future

Daniel and me
A photo with Daniel in downtown Nashville

As I neared the end of my 20s, I once again found my strength being tested and grew from it. I learned a lot, partially because I was forced to be independent for the first time in my life. And because I was a better person, stronger and more mature, I was also equipped to be a better husband when I met the right guy.

That’s when Daniel came into the picture. It was love at first sight, although it took awhile for me to finally make a move. Once I did, everything fell into place and I found the man I want to spend my life with.

Our weddingI proposed to Daniel in 2010 and we were married in 2011. Life is wonderful. Balanced, happy, full of love, as it should be. I’ve grown a lot and I continue to find myself each day. Even though I curse those evil crow’s feet and forehead lines that are developing, I will admit that life does get better with age.

Someday we plan to have kids. For now, we have two cats, Purr Purr and Magoo, and one miniature schnauzer named Mrs. Anna Madrigal. Anna was named after my favorite character in Armistead Maupin’s Tales of the City series. I work from home and run my own website design business.

Anna and me
Holding our miniature schnauzer, Mrs. Madrigal

The Importance of Being Exposed

I was in a very angry mindset when I started this blog in 2005. The LGBT community was fighting for equality as states were banning marriage rights across the map. Bush had just been re-elected and our whole country was in turmoil. I wanted to be out and proud, louder than ever. I wanted every single person to know I’m gay, I deserve equality, and I’m not just going to shut up and go away.

I was also very sad. My grandmother, who was my biggest supporter, had passed away in 2004. There was so much time I’d missed out on by living so far away. And there was so much wisdom I wanted to learn from her. When she died, I realized I didn’t want to miss out on my family anymore. I moved to Nashville, TN in 2005 because it was just 3 hours away from my family in Illinois. It was a city big enough to grow in and still close enough to visit them whenever I wanted.

My relationship with my family is still tainted with controversy over being gay. I have gained some support and acceptance throughout, even with my parents, but the topic is still an ongoing debate. My journey towards equality is ongoing, but we’ve all made great progress. The story continues to be written.

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Discussions

16 Comments

  • Great list of facts and I learned a few things I didn’t already know from my stalking… err reading. ๐Ÿ™‚

    Chris (Feb 14, 2009)
  • Great list. Great to know more about you. i too have been restoring my foreskin. I started in 2005. Would love to know more about your progress.

    Blair (Feb 14, 2009)
  • Very cute photosโ€”and thanks for sharing!

    Riverwolf (Feb 14, 2009)
  • great to know you. I am sorry to hear that you ended the relation. Maybe we can talk sometimes, I mean, I’d like to make a friend with you. Actually I am inexperienced and comfused. Looking forward to hearing from you.
    See you then.

    Aaron (May 17, 2009)
  • Nathan,

    thanks for sharing so much of your life… it makes me feel more sane! Good luck on your journey, your in my prayers…

    Dude Diva!

    dudediva (Jun 21, 2009)
  • Ive only driven through Nashvile, but eager to visit one day when I have time.

    Youre an amazing guy, i hope you do well in every thing you take on.

    djhinn (Oct 16, 2009)
  • Just started reading your blog this weekend. From Nashville? Nice! Probably one of my favorite towns because you get the big city feel but its still kinda small. Cool to have a representative from the South! I’ll be sure to keep an eye out for you when I come up to visit friends next time… like that would happen.

    Mike (Feb 2, 2010)
  • You look very handsome, idk why but before I saw your picture I pictured you as Perez Hilton ๐Ÿ˜›

    Brian (May 14, 2010)
  • Hi Nathan
    Really nice blog site.
    I am from Liverpool in the UK, and have been with my partner Peter for 13 years. We married (or became civil partners) four years ago, and have recently adopted two brothers, aged 1 and 2.
    I am writing this message as I noticed you were interested in adopting, and I wanted to tell you it is the most amazing experience of our lives. It took two long years of process, but they came to live with us Feb this year, and we love them to bits!
    Congratulations on your recent marriage, and hope you have a wonderful future together!

    Mark (Apr 12, 2011)
  • Hey Nathan

    I loved reading your posts…Saw a comment on one of the blogs so got down here, man!

    Nice to know ya…And loved your candor!

    I’m a frank Scorpio too btw lol

    Akshay (Jun 28, 2011)
  • Hi Akshay, nice to meet you fellow Scorpio! ๐Ÿ™‚ Thanks for reading

    Nathan (Jun 29, 2011)
  • Looking at your wedding and engagement pictures. I love the rings. My BF and I are getting married this September and would love to get some info on where you bought. Thanks Brian

    Brian (Jul 3, 2011)
  • You’re awesome. Definitely an inspiration. I’ll be back to this site!

    Victor Casares (Jul 1, 2012)
    • Thank you so much, Victor! I look forward to hearing more from you.

      Nathan (Jul 11, 2012)
  • You’r a great person. I just read your first entries of this blog and I was like “This dude’s cool”. I’ll continue reading your blog every single entry. So thank you, brave cool man! ๐Ÿ™‚

    Dima (Feb 11, 2013)
  • Hi Nathan.

    I love your blog! Every post I’ve read has been endearing and honest. I usually don’t comment on the blogs I read, but I felt the coincidence was too great to go unspoken. My name is Nathan, and I am in love with a Daniel. Fate? I think so.

    Anyway, congratulations on the adoption process–I hope everything goes perfectly for you guys!

    Thanks for the inspirational read,

    Nate

    Nate (Nov 14, 2013)

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About Nathan

I'm a happily married gay man, writing about my life as a new father and sharing our adventures with a side of snark.
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