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The Gay Blade

26th September 2008

Advice to a Young Gay Man

Posted by: Michael Stevens

There used to be a fashion in the 17th century to write manuals of advice for young men. Often they were framed as letters from a father to his son. I was wondering what sort of advice I’d give today to a young man coming out into the glamorous glittering world of gay Auckland.

Because, of course, when I was a young man, venturing out into homoland, there really wasn’t anything in the way of examples or models except for Hudson & Halls or Mr Humphries on “Are You Being Served” - and as much as I appreciate them now, at the time I just didn’t want to be anything like them.

However, I did start my sex life at the tender age of 15, in the public toilets in the Otahuhu car park. And I just kept going back, there and to other bogs around town. Doing the milk run as we called it. Albert Park, High St, Durham Lane, Customs St and back.

There was no Rainbow Youth to go to - all the advice I got was from men who wanted my sweet young body. Some of them were remarkably kind. Others were not. And I still remember being taken home in the middle of the day by one guy who turned his wedding picture beside the bed face down before we got into it. I guess I was about 16 by then.

But what advice would I give to young gay man in his teens coming out today? It’s such a different world.

I think first and foremost, I’d advise him to try and find fuck-buddies close to his own age. There are  so many nasty sharks swimming out in the water. It’s easy to be impressed by someone who has a bit of money, a nice flat and a car, maybe access to some fun drugs as well. But he will most likely be just using you for your sweet tender body. So sticking to around your own age at first is not bad. You’ll also hear from others who the players are, who the sick creeps are, and who is nice.

Make friends. Not just fuck-buddies, but real friends. People you can count on. People who will help you when you drink too much, who will either get you home or ring up your folks with a convincing story. I am still friends with guys I met on the scene here in Auckland back in the 70s and early 80s. Having good friends you’ve known for decades is one of the best things life can give you. It adds a texture to your life that you can’t get anywhere else.

Trust the love your family has for you. Your parents have known you all your life. They probably already have a good idea if you’re gay or not. They’re not dumb. I’m not saying you have to rush out and tell them straight off - but give them a little credit. They love you and want you to be happy.

I can still remember ringing my parents when I was 18 after (breaking all my own rules here) getting picked up by a sexy guy in his 30s who had a nice car and house. I rang them after midnight, apologised and said I was too drunk to get home but I’d be back in the morning and was crashing at a friend’s house. They thought I’d been very mature.

Drugs: You’ll probably end up doing some no matter what I say. Just don’t do too many all at once - it gets messy ! And always make sure you have a friend around who knows what you’ve taken. And keep your phone charged and close by. If it has a needle or a broken light bulb attached - don’t.

Dance ! God, when I think back as to how much I loved to dance when I was in my teens and 20s. I could dance for hours - now, more a happy memory.

Do I advise you to trust or to be suspicious? Frankly, there are so many lying shits in the world, gay or straight, that you won’t be able to avoid them whatever you do. And it sucks to go through life being suspicious of everyone you meet. So I guess I’d advise you to listen to your gut instinct. And take a chance - trust people more often than not, but if you start to feel a little uncomfortable, if you start to hear a little voice in your head going”Hmm, I’m not sure…” then listen to it and move on.

Be polite. I don’t mean you need to bring out your Nanna manners - but it always pays to be nice to people around you. Listen to what they say. Show a little respect. It’s the old story - treat them as you’d like to be treated.

Pay your share of the bill. If money is tight, either don’t go out, or tell people first that you’re broke so everyone knows where they stand. Don’t wait till the bill arrives to do the Aussie haka as you pat your pockets looking for cash.

Look after your body. It is where you live. It can give you the most intense wonderful pleasure. If you treat it badly it can treat you badly back, and that ain’t fun. So be good to yourself. Get some exercise - trust me, that youthful muscle tone will go suddenly if you don’t. And please - don’t get HIV. Condoms and lube! Always !There are so many guys out there who have it who won’t tell you. Look after your self.

Be as honest as you can. Sometimes, a little deceit is better than sticking to the truth. But never lie in a way that will really hurt someone else.

Fall in love. God, your youth is the best time ever to do that. But try and do it with someone who’s falling for you too. The pain of one-sided love is no fun. But if you both can ride the wave,  just go for it.

Above all enjoy it. It really is a wonderful life, and being gay lets you experience parts of it your straight brothers and sisters will never know. You will come to see life from so many different angles and meet so many great people along the way. Enjoy it. Love yourself.

Tags: General

21 responses so far ↓

  • 1 hunky1 // Sep 26, 2008 at 12:36 pm

    Wow…i found the article to be very frank and helpful.. loved it =)

  • 2 Kavin King // Sep 26, 2008 at 1:22 pm

    What a fabulous article, Michael.
    Every Gay home should have it embroidered on the wall. It is the Desiderata of the Noughties.

    When I was young may parents used to warn me sot to speak to strange men. Thank goodness I have finally become one!

  • 3 Jason // Sep 26, 2008 at 1:59 pm

    This is awesome Michael! Thanks!

  • 4 jon // Sep 26, 2008 at 11:10 pm

    for one you have written something worthy of reading

  • 5 King Oberon // Sep 27, 2008 at 12:16 pm

    WOW!

    A gay man writing HONEST words…that’s a rare find.

    Greatly enjoyed reading your writings…very much on a par with my own thoughts of late…

    There appears to be quite a revolution underway with a small group of like minded people, nice to see we have others on board :D

  • 6 Nick // Sep 27, 2008 at 3:00 pm

    well done, great article and so true. Some great rules to live by regardless of age :)

  • 7 Sam N // Sep 27, 2008 at 5:59 pm

    Thank you for the blog,
    I myself still young, i think (22).

    Most of what you said i can totally relate to, however i wish it was written earlier. Of what i have experience so far some of them i prefer to not expreience through first hand.

    Keep it coming,
    Cheers.

  • 8 Josh P // Sep 28, 2008 at 1:33 pm

    hey man nice work; have been thinking along these lines too lately; was questioned as to why i have so many dyke friends and so few gay male friends recently. most of my close gay male friends are flung across the planet; or in sydney where I flung myself for 10 years; but as for finding new friends (and I dont mean the one click FB (thats Facebook not Fuckbuddy) variety….well it aint easy kermit…i used to coordinate Rainbow Youth back in the day and I still maintain ties with quite a few of those people 12 years on. But dunno what its like today being young gay and needing mates to bounce ideas off and gain support. if anyone from RY is reading perhaps you could mention some of the support/social groups that are out there…

  • 9 Kev // Sep 30, 2008 at 12:42 pm

    Thanks Michael - absolutely on the mark. I think it’s one of our greatest responsibilities as adult gay men to address the other side of this equation: creating a world that’s safe for young gay men to come out into. Sadly this is not just a question of addressing a stigmatising social environment in wider society, but also of dealing to the exploitative aspects of our own culture.

    And hi Josh!

  • 10 NikJ // Sep 30, 2008 at 1:06 pm

    Michael,
    Hats off to you!!!!! Bravo!!!!!
    you, have not only written an article for this site; you’ve created a masterpiece from your own experiences and portrayed it to those of us who needed this kind of sound advice…
    I never had support groups to help me out before i came to NZ….now, it’s a completely different life…
    cheers,
    Nik :)

  • 11 Uroskin // Oct 2, 2008 at 12:06 pm

    Good, sensible and practical advice all. I’d only add to get a proper education (even if school might be challenging now as a young queen starting out). Life is so much sweeter if you are of independent means and skills.

  • 12 Terry // Oct 4, 2008 at 11:11 am

    Totally agree with what you wrote, As sound as your advice is, sadly it can usually only be understood with age and life experience, and with HIV, Drugs and the gay lifestyle our young can end up cutting themselves short.
    But thats not a reason to give up. and we as a Gay community (what community there is) needs more Michael’s.

    Thanks again
    P.S. Hope you don’t mind If I post this on my site. (credits attached ofcourse)

  • 13 Doug // Oct 16, 2008 at 11:22 pm

    Beautifully written, and very honest. Young men out there, heed these words, you won’t regret it :-)

  • 14 Howie // Oct 17, 2008 at 8:41 am

    I am an older gay man who happens to have alot young male friends who are gay/bi and just curious.I tell only what they ask to know and nothing more,I am not a lechorous old guy either,lmao…

  • 15 Shane // Nov 20, 2008 at 12:08 am

    Hmmm, the only thing I really take issue with is the make friends comment.

    I find it’s incredibly hard to meet guys decent enough to be friends with. The gay scene is quite sickening in that guys either seem to be cunts, pure and simple, or they’re pretentious, elitist gits that -while beneath all that are cool guys- you need a machete to cut all those layers off and, well I’m not a fan of sweating, so I can’t be bothered hacking through the layers.

    In other words, the main thing wrong with this article is that it over estimates the integrity and caliber of gay males in Auckland, or great NZ for that matter.

  • 16 Tonez // Nov 26, 2008 at 4:55 pm

    Fuk yeah dat waz da shit haha translate 4 u coz im da man:) dat waz a great blog me az a bi curious male would feed ov thz and approach my lifestyle a bit dfrnt much love by otahuhus finest souf syd rep.1m 19 and active lolz.

  • 17 Saskia // Dec 23, 2008 at 12:59 pm

    Hi I’m a straightish girl and found this really lovely.

  • 18 Leo // Apr 6, 2009 at 10:55 am

    I came across this when I did a google search on young gay love, wasn’t what I was looking for however I wish I had done everything differently, I did all the wrong things in the start. I’m 18 and for two years have been a told mess. The above wrongs were my life. I plan to make a change. The problem is that although this is common sense, many just get sucked into a life style. I’m greatful that I finally met some people who brought me back down to earth. This really should be more accessible.

  • 19 Danny and Will // Apr 21, 2009 at 3:59 pm

    You deceptive little basterd tell a bunch of young boys to go fuck around and do drugs and not worry I am a young boy who met my partner at 16 we have been together 6 years Monogomously except for a stupid mistake that I made out of anger. Boys cannot just have a good few good fuck buddies this is why gay is frowned on because of sluts and people who cannot keep their dick in their pants. Not everyone is sick just because you couldnt keep yours in your pants and fucked married men does not mean that all older men are perverts most are good men who just want someone young because they relate to youth and have a youthful mindset for that matter my gay partner asked me if I wanted to have sex asked me!! The only thing fucking around and drugs will get a 16 year old boy is aids and bad memories. Your article brought tears to my eyes because sex is sacred it something to be shared with 2 people who LOVE each other not LUST each other.

  • 20 mike // Jul 27, 2009 at 11:46 am

    Good sound advice based on life experience is priceless and it is good if a young gay guy can find a decent, loving, caring and trustworthy older age guy to confide or talk with.

    Not all older guys are sleazy, there are many decent older guys eg, over 50 who make a good father figure to a younger gay boy. Most boys need guidance, love, respect from an older father figure or older guy.

    There is also nothing wrong with a young guy falling in love with an older guy, it does work despite the negative attitude of many people and our closed minded society. I’m referring to boys of legal age of course.

    Yes doing drugs, getting drunk, sleeping around is not the way to go as there are way too many risks. Most young gay guys want love and acceptance and often look for it in all the wrong places. Life is a learning curve however there is no harm sitting down and talking with a decent and caring older guy on a one to one level in an open and honest way.

    Yes it is not easy to find a decent gay boyfriend, but hey don’t give up as they are out there, it just takes a bit more time and effort and will be worth your while in the end.

  • 21 brian // Aug 27, 2009 at 3:32 am

    well its obvious who this is about!

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