The Closeted Man

Why do you have sex with other men?
What! ..why does anyone have sex with anyone – money, pleasure.. I don't know, because I like it, because the other guy looks good and makes me feel good, sometimes, I think because I want physical contact and I cannot get the same thing with a woman. Sometimes, it is not about the sex.
What do you mean, not about the sex?
I am sick and tired of people thinking that all gay men want is to have sex all the time. First of all, all kinds of men (and women) like having sex, not only gay men. Maybe gay men tend to have sex without fuss, but the other side of that, is that some gay men are looking for love, but it is difficult to do in a homophobic environment. some of us just prefer to hug and cuddling.
Gay lifestyle is blamed for the spread of the HIV epidemic, what role do you play in spreading the epidemic?
Yeah, it is true that the anal sex was first seen as the primary reason, and then blood transfusions. Now we know different, and it is dangerous for people to think that they are safe because they or their partners are straight [heterosexual]. Many gay men do not have anal sex, while many straight couples do it. I support all the work done in education. It is sickening though, that while they say that gay men are at risk, in Guyana you cant find any education aimed at educating gay men.. you know , all the ads and the stories imply heterosexual people, or if they involve gay men is only those who wear women's clothes.
What about God and your lifestyle?
You keep talking about my lifestyle as though it is something different from everybody else's. My lifestyle is getting up in the morning, doing the chores at home, say my prayers, hurrying up to get to work, stress through a work day and anything else, try to do stuff, curse the country and the economy, now and then look twice at a cute guy.. I think God has been good to me, though I hated God for making me gay. I wanted to die many times. God exists in many things I guess. I pray every day, and I have accepted that I cannot change, but can make sensible choices. Many gay men and women have turned from God and religion, and now are finding that their God is with them. I try my best to live a lifestyle in which I pay taxes, and don't steal or thief or commit any crimes.
Is it a crime for two men to have sex?
Yeah, okay that one then.. so arrest me and charge me.. maybe we should set up a fund somewhere so that we could automatically pay the fines every time we have sex.
Are gay men protecting themselves and having safe sex?
I don't know, I think many guys are thinking of condom use, sometimes though they believe that when they fall in love, that they could trust their partner and asking to use a condom is like mistrust.
Some guys do not discuss safe sex, some guys think that when they with a man, is not real sex.. you know, that they not gay, they just having kicks.. I go to have my tests, and pretend that I am straight though.. and the counselors always ask about me about the girls.. or I avoid any talk of who the partner is. Many of us just masturbate.
Would you have sex with someone who is HIV positive?
You know.. funny you ask, I never thought of that.. I use a condom every time assuming that everyone is HIV positive.. but hey.. no, I don't think that I could have sex with someone who is HIV positive.. I would be scared.. lose my erection.
What about women and marriage?
I fell in love with a woman once, but that did not work out, it was nice though when it lasted. Some things are not easy and straight forward. yeah. I used to think that this was a phase, and with prayers, I would be able to get married and all would be well, but it is not working out.
Are you part of any gay scene or group or anything like that in Guyana?
No, I am terrified, because of confidentiality, and also because I think that sometimes we do the same things straight people do, we put on a face and pretend a lot that all is well, just like we do when we with straight people. It is confusing, and very lonely, because you don't want people to laugh at you for being 'in the closet', sometimes I envy those guys who out and proud in their women's clothes..
Do you wear women's clothes?
Nah, i never felt the urge, in Guyana people assume that gay means wearing women's clothes .. besides which, I am hairy, and it would take too much for me to look good in dress and make up.. and in any case, when you get down to it.. you take off all the clothes anyway, man or woman.
How many men have you had sex with?
Thousands.. I am gay, so I must have a versatile and busy sex life.. right? I don't know, I don't count.. what I like to reflect on though, is the guys who I might have loved, or who if things were different around us, we could have 'settled down together', all the straight people who could show affection in public, imagine if they could not for whatever reason and things had to be secret.
What do you want in the future for you?
I don't know, sometimes i want to stop fighting and die, you know go out there and get AIDS as they want me to, then I would not be a problem for anyone. That takes courage though and maybe God got other things in store for me. Many gay guys around the world are out and proud and are in public life and are accepted. I can't deal with that, so I just do what I have to do, you know Christmas, family, friends, work, work, l, do this, do that..survival I guess, and in between find a way to make things work. What I know, is that I will be alone.
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