Gay cowboy dating
Perhaps the worst part was not being able to talk to anyone about it, not even my best friend.Even if I trusted someone enough to carry the secret capable of ending life as I knew it, I couldn't say it out loud. "I'm gay." I wanted nothing more than for those unspeakable words to be false.As much as I was unafraid of death, seeing what my family and friends went through was terrifying.The copious amount of love and support was shocking and life-changing.I would laugh at their jokes and pretend to agree with them when they made derogatory statements.On the inside I swallowed my heart along with the terrifying thoughts that I might be gay.Growing up gay in a rural ranch community made me who I am today. ‘Struggle' implies the typical high school experience — balancing acne, popularity, sports, grades and parental control.I am emotionally strong, shamelessly confident and relatively successful. The ‘struggle' I speak of was an internal battle so fierce and destructible I was frequently left with severe nausea. Before I could face my peers every day, I had to face myself.
At the risk of being melodramatic, I was unsure if I would survive.My final year of law school at the University of South Dakota was a challenge.After an internship in Louisville helped me explore my true self away from my home state, I could no longer hide it from my closest friends.I was the only son born to a fifth-generation ranching family in rural South Dakota. As a toddler, I wanted to be exactly like my father when I grew up: go to college, marry a wife as perfect as my mother and have a family of my own.
The nearest town had a population of 400 people and was a 25-mile drive on mostly gravel roads. Of course we would rodeo, because that was what my family did.At 21 years old, I was able to finally admit to myself for the first time — "I am gay." The internal surrender relieved the worst of my pain.