If you could be 20 yrs old again . . .

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If you could be 20 yrs old again . . .

Postby michaelk69 » Tue May 12, 2009 1:27 pm

nimby wrote:Man, if I could only be twenty again. My life would be so different.


Nimby made this statement in a different thread, and it really got me thinking.

You know, if I could be 20 again, I wouldn't do ANYthing differently. I've been sitting here thinking about it and thinking about it, and I can't think of a single thing. I'm not saying that's a good thing or a bad thing . . . I'm just being honest. But I do think that it's probably unusual to feel that way, right?

What about the rest of you? If you woke up tomorrow and you were 20 again, what, if anything, would you do differently the second time around?
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Postby furface » Tue May 12, 2009 1:54 pm

Assumin' it were today and not 05/12/67... :lol:

I'm fairly certain I'd be much more open about my orientation then I was at 20. And I'd likely of stayed in school longer, Vietnam was big thing then, and gotten a degree.

But all things being equal, like MichaelK, I can't really think of much I'd do different.

And if ya mean havin' to go back to 1967; probably the same answer.

In either case changing what choices I made/make fundamentally changes the person I are or would become. Active fantasy life or not, just can't wrap my alleged mind around those possibilities.

I guess I'm just basically happy/content with how I am now. Not so sure I could face the uncertainty of the future now; it was hard enough 40+ years ago.

If this makes sense, it's quite by accident. :lol:
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Postby foxeyes2 » Tue May 12, 2009 1:56 pm

Well if I could go back then I would want to accept myself at that point. Would have saved me a lot of grief.
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Postby JakeMIke » Tue May 12, 2009 2:44 pm

I think I would have decided on a career as soon as I could and gone with it. Also would have started to save money a lot sooner.
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Postby Daknee » Tue May 12, 2009 2:53 pm

I would accept myself as gay. When I was 20, the first time, I was still in the closet with myself and trying to fight it.
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Postby Schlodesss » Tue May 12, 2009 5:16 pm

Mmmmm.....?

I'm not sure, I had some pretty wild times when i was 20... stuff I can always loook back and say "wholly f*()k how did we not die?" and it was FUN.

I never had any sex.. none.. I was deep in the closet.. so I struggled through with that part.. but ironically even though I am out now, I enjoyed my life more then.

Everything sucks now and there are too many rules for things that never had rules then... You can't fart out in the middle of nowhere without someone having something to say about it.

This planet needs an enema.
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Postby glas_scot » Tue May 12, 2009 5:23 pm

Well currently, I'm at the stage in life where certain deicisions I make could shape and mould me into what lies ahead in the future. So I'm not wanting to turn back the clock, I'm wanting to see whats ahead.

Recently I've been thinking about changing my degree major and the only thing that has got me thinking about this is career prospects. I really like the course I'm doing but it may be harder for me to get into the Engineering field (I'm thinking of changing to Civil Engineering).

In fact, talking about this just made me realise I still have a crap load of work to do!
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Postby blackmet » Tue May 12, 2009 11:01 pm

20 was a pretty decent year, honestly.

But, I would have left town for school and worked harder at fininshing it faster, with a better GPA. I hadn't really screwed anything up yet.

That's about it. If could change 21-25 though, DAMN I would.
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Postby Earl Butz » Wed May 13, 2009 5:59 am

It's January of 1985....what would I do over again....

EVERYTHING!! Damn. Out of closet. Yeah. Why don't we hear about that more? Staying in there totally wrecks your entire life.

And I would immediately stop listening to everything my father said. He was wrong about 99% of the time. There is a horrible job waiting for me in May of this year. I would have not even applied for it....much less taken it!!

Oh God it's so depressing even thinking about this. The 80's just sucked from start to finish. It's amazing I survived that decade at all. :(
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Postby Cachasa » Wed May 13, 2009 7:07 pm

Earl Butz wrote:It's January of 1985....what would I do over again....

EVERYTHING!! Damn. Out of closet. Yeah. Why don't we hear about that more? Staying in there totally wrecks your entire life.

And I would immediately stop listening to everything my father said. He was wrong about 99% of the time. There is a horrible job waiting for me in May of this year. I would have not even applied for it....much less taken it!!

Oh God it's so depressing even thinking about this. The 80's just sucked from start to finish. It's amazing I survived that decade at all. :(


I was born in the 80's!!!! So they couldn't have been that bad. haha

Hmmm...if I could go back 3 years what would I do differently? Well, I guess that the only thing I would want to change is that I would have tried a little harder in university. I just graduated and my only regret is that I wish my marks were a little better.

But everything else I would keep the same. There was a lot of interesting events that really revolved around timing. I defiantly would have still done my psychology internship. I'm so glad I did. If I hadn't I would have gone into that carrier after school and then woken up 10 years later in my thirties saying, "God I hate this Job!".

Also during my internship I met my cheating X boyfriend. Which was important because he exposed me to a whole other set of career possibilities I hadn't considered before. Like military service!!

So everything worked out for the best. No debts, carrier aspirations, my life is on track.

Except that I haven't gotten laid since September...lol.
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Postby nimby » Wed May 13, 2009 10:27 pm

I don't even know where to start, so I won't bother.
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Postby michaelk69 » Thu May 14, 2009 5:03 am

That's so sad :-(

But maybe there are things you can do right now, to sort of "right some of the wrongs" of the past.

You know, like, today is the first day of the rest of your life, that sort of thing.

You are only 40, nimby, that is young! Just think, you can make the second half of your life everything you want it to be . . . look to the future, it's all there for the taking :-)
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Postby nimby » Thu May 14, 2009 8:43 am

That's kinda why I'm here. To find out what it coulda been like.

Seriously though, so far I've gotten so much better than I actually deserve in life. I know that and I am thankful. Really. Just wondering where I would be if I actually made the choices for me. Could be better, could be worse. Different? definitely.

I wouldn't have gotten married so young.
I would have chose to go to school out of town.
I would have chose a different program.
Etc, etc, etc.

All the choices that were made for me were very padestrian, very safe, didn't leave much room for failure or experience. In other words...
ZZZZzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzz.

Vanilla everything. But I really wish I stayed with my acting. I was a really cute kid and things were starting to happen there. Was in a few movies when I was a kid. Had a really good agent and was starting to get good parts. But I chickened out. I was so afraid of success that I quit the business before it could quit me. That's been my mantra in life. Afraid of success, so why try.

And Michael, I read you posts in the other thread about your life and it is amazing. Truly. You made your choices and stuck to them. What an inspiration.

signed, another Michael.
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Postby michaelk69 » Thu May 14, 2009 9:14 am

well, I really don't want to hijack EVERY thread on here with my life story, lol, but so much of my amazing life was just pure old luck, it really was . . .

I was at college like any other 19 year old . . . knew I was gay . .. but was too afraid to act on it . .. like a lot of other 19 year olds, I'm sure. Maybe there aren't as many today, but back then I am sure there were loads . . .

And so I decided to take a year abroad. Again, not an unusual thing to do. And I pretty much sucked at languages, and so I chose England, lol . . .

The next bit was key, though. Somehow being abroad made me braver, and so I knew for months before I ever left for London that I was going to do "gay stuff" there .. . I was still terrified, but the fact of being somewhere so foreign and strange made it easier somehow. Had I been forced to go to a gay bar in New Jersey (where I grew up) i don't think I could have ever, ever done it. I was just too much of a coward.

And so it was no time at all before I went to my first gay bar, had my first gay kiss, had my first gay . . . other stuff . . . but I had to go 5000 miles to do it, lol . . . so I was no hero, just a coward really.

Anyway, you know the rest, I met a guy . . total luck again . . met him in a dark and not very nice bar . . . and after two weeks I knew he was The One. And no, I had never been a real relationship before, gay or straight. And he reminds me all the time of a conversation that we had back then, because I didn't really know if I could continue seeing him, and I said:

"I just don't see how I can live this life back home"

. . . and he was really taken with the wording . .. and we really still do talk about this now . ... because i didn't say:

"I can't live like this back home"

or

"I don't want to live like this back home"

. . . I said that I couldn't see it. Didn't know how to do it. And so he was like, OK, there is an opening here, and so he was really patient and kind, but he saw that chink in the armor and wouldn't let me get away.

And it was some time before i WAS able to live "like that" back home, but I got there in the end! And clearly it has all worked out ...

But so much of it was circumstance, and having an open mind . . the problem is that you need to have both of those things, and a lot of people are very closed to possibility . . .

But you know that blue bar you get on your PC screen, when something is downloading? And it sort of fills slowly and steadily across the screen? Well that is what I think life is like, and as our life passes that bar is just filling up further and further until it gets to the end, and then bang, game over. And so, yeah, I guess that I have taken some chances, because I want to make the most of the very very short time we have on this planet, before it's all over.

I'd advise anyone to ask themselves: bah, what's the worst that can happen? And then just jump in with both feet. The hard part is trusting in a benevolent universe, and knowing deep down inside that everything will be OK in the end, even though there may be some rough patches along the way.

It can be scary, but the pay-off will be worth it, i reckon.
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Postby nimby » Thu May 14, 2009 10:00 am

For me I guess this life can be boiled down into one word. Obligation.

I was obligated to stay close to home.
I was obligated to look after the family when my dad died.
I was obligated to marry my girlfriend because she saved me from suicide.
I was obligated to raise a family to carry on the family name.
I am obligated to look after me ailing mother because there is no one else.
I am obligated to be the peace maker in the family because I'm the nice guy.
I am obligated to put my joy behind my family's needs.
I am obligated to work to pay the bills of this lifestyle I've grown accustomed to.
I am obligated to keep up pretenses now because this is what I've created.

But no one is obliged to me. Every day I walk around like a zombie with a prepetual lump in my throat, constantly on the verge of tears, wondering what if I did things differently. Even crying in the car on the way home. And my health is suffereing for it. Diabetes, hypertension, liver condition (and I don't even drink!!!) and now a growth on my colon. Perfect. Now I know that unhappiness takes a toll on your body and mind. So please don't be too quick to judge us closeted bi guys as ones who want it all, cause believe it or not, sometimes we actually we have the least.

I've always fealt that I wasn't meant to be long on this earth, and have had a few very close calls. But things are catching up to me now. You can't live a sham without paying the consequences. I just hope I make it long enough to fulfill all my obligations.

And now I got a friggin' head cold, damn it. And just in time for the long weekend. Great.
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Postby jkav » Thu May 14, 2009 7:53 pm

nimby wrote:For me I guess this life can be boiled down into one word. Obligation.
You sound like my dad.

nimby wrote:I am obligated to put my joy behind my family's needs.
I'm speaking as a son, here: trust me, your family can tell if you're unhappy with your life, and you're not doing them or yourself any favors by withdrawing into yourself.

nimby wrote:But no one is obliged to me.
Don't be so sure. I'll bet there is a person out there somewhere who shoulders your unhappiness, perhaps without you even being aware of it, and knowing there is really nothing he or she could do to make it any better.

Please don't misinterpret my intent here. I just went through a very similar experience with my dad, and because of some choices he made, our relationship has ended. Despair is a heady emotion, and it spreads through families like wildfire. Tread carefully, and not just for your own sake.
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Postby nimby » Thu May 14, 2009 9:12 pm

Yea, it does sound pretty pathetic. I should learn to read before I hit post. I think I'm on the rag. Is that possible? Is PMS contageous?

I guess I could sound like your dad. We kinda have a few things in common I bet. Responsibility is funny that way. But don't forget, sometimes it's our families that do this to us. Some times the ones we love the most hurt us the most.

Yes, dispair is dangerous. And thus not something to be repressed. It can be worked out and talked out but only if all parties are game. If not, one usually shoulders the brunt of the responsibility. Thats how life goes when you chose to raise a family.

BLA bla bla. Enough of that crap. Anyone know any good jokes?
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Postby solitaryman1969 » Thu May 14, 2009 10:01 pm

I wouldn't mind be 20 again, but only if I can have the knowledge of the lessons I've learned over the years.


Nimby, don't have joke, but did experience a funny moment at the gym.

After getting dressed, went to the mirror for a final check before I left.

Another gym member wanted to use the same mirror to comb his hair, I said sorry as I was blocking his view and he said:

"No worries, I can do it from behind." :shock: :lol:

I laughed, and told him, "I'm not even touching that one, way too easy."

And he turned all red and laughed. :lol:
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Postby nimby » Fri May 15, 2009 10:20 am

That's rich!!! That should be in the thread, "Best pick up lines when you're not sure he's into guys."
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Postby dezotti » Fri May 15, 2009 10:33 am

20 again?

I would have went on that roadtrip that I was invited to by my neighbor. Instead, I ended up working all that summer for lousy pay.
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Postby olywaguy » Fri May 15, 2009 11:10 am

Well, I wished I would have figured my preference for guys a lot sooner than age 38. It would've been nice to have gone out with guys when I was a lot thinner. However, I was 20 in 1983 and that would've been during the height of HIV/AIDS when no one knew how to deal with the disease or where it came from, etc., so in a way, its a blessing that I missed out.

No doubt, there are a lot of other things I missed out on because I didn't take the risk. It is something that I try very hard to work on.
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Postby Earl Butz » Sat May 16, 2009 5:19 am

Interesting comments from both Michaels.

My advice for Toronto Michael would be you can't make anyone else happy if you're not happy. But I guess it's too late for that. Yikes.

I like to blame AIDS for staying in the closet. It was turning into the killer plague the year I turned 20. (1985) But I was a total coward too which didn't help. :?
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Postby nimby » Sat May 16, 2009 9:05 am

Earl Butz wrote:
My advice for Toronto Michael would be you can't make anyone else happy if you're not happy. But I guess it's too late for that. Yikes.



Really, I'm not too bad. I just re-read that post employment thread and realize that I am pretty lucky. Honest !!! But once in a while I get in a rut just like everyone else. The whole b-day crap and being inundated with estrogen at home sometimes pushes me over the edge. Cripes I think I'm starting to grow boobs. I just have to get out more and find some guys to hang with.
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Postby DeckApe » Sat May 16, 2009 5:41 pm

20? Hmm.

I was more or less out at college. Hadn't come out at home yet, and didn't for another 12 years. Hell, I still haven't told my brother, and my father never knew. Wouldn't change that.

About all I miss about being twenty would be... well, the perpetual erection. :oops:

Actually, I would've spent more time exercising and taking care of my body. I don't think 20 is too late to ingrain better habits. 36 is pushing it. :lol:
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Postby crankycurmudgeon » Sun May 17, 2009 1:39 pm

Good god NO -- unless I got to have the magic time machine that lets me see ahead and know what I know now.

I've come to realize that in my case I would make pretty much all the same mistakes and screw up all the same opportunities. A lot of that is based on how I see the world, how I take in and evaluate information and my low tolerance for risk and conflict. I can understand Nimby's sense of obligation and how that frustrates and channels life. In my family we call that "Did you choose or were you picked?" I've come to the conclusion not to waste time and energy on that question. I'm also in an odd segment of the population - homosexuality was considered a mental illness until shortly before I was 18, so 'coming out' in a conservative Roman Catholic family wasn't really a supportive environment (we figured out Don't Ask Don't Tell well before the military). By the time I was in my mid 20's HIV/AIDS was happening, but nobody knew what it was other than a cluster of rare diseases in the gay community. The path I chose kept me safe and healthy so that I was able to meet folks who could help me understand myself and be who I was meant to be. That's the part I'm working on now.
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