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Henry

Posted on Wednesday, October 15th, 2008

Dave!This is an entry in two parts. First I am going to go insane. Then I am going to cry.

Let's start with the insanity, shall we? In response to my entry yesterday about voting no on Proposition 8 in California, a reader brought to my attention the even more outrageous Proposition 1 happening in Arkansas. This truly vile ballot item facing voters in "The Natural State" would prohibit cohabitating couples from adopting or providing foster care to children. Put another way, only a married couple would be allowed to provide a home for a child in need. To put it still another way... unmarried sinners and God-hating faggots need not apply.

Even when facing unbelievably ludicrous shit like this, I honestly do try very hard to see an issue from all sides.

But how in the hell do you do that when somebody honestly thinks that being stuck in an orphanage is a better environment for a child than a home where they are wanted, loved, and cared for? Even in a Prop 1 supporter's most depraved homosexually-themed nightmares, how is an unmarried couple for a family or a gay couple for a family worse than no family at all? How is it that being married automatically makes you perfect caregivers for children? As I read through mind-boggling comments by scary homophobes on Prop 1 news sites, it apparently has to do with exposing innocent children to "perverts" and turning them gay by example. I can't even dignify this with a response except to ask "if being raised by a straight couple guarantees a child won't 'turn gay'... where do the gays come from?"

DAVETOON: Lil' Dave and Bad Monkey holding NO ON #1 signs

Study of the issue has brought me no closer to understanding how children are better off if Prop 1 passes, thus denying them loving homes that are all too rare.

I mean, seriously, WHAT THE FUCK?!? Shit like this makes me insane.

See, I told you so.

And then...

It seems whenever I write an entry in support of gay issues, it opens up the question of "why" as in "Why do you care about gay rights when you're not gay." Sometimes readers guess it's because I've met bunches of gay bloggers, which is indeed part of it (I also have gay "real life" friends and people I work with who are gay), but it's not the driving force behind my activism. Others assume it's because I'm gay myself, which I've already addressed... or because I somehow think it's funny, which I assure you I do not.

The simple answer is because I am a human, and believe that nobody should be treated differently because of how they're born. Whether it be because a person has blue eyes... or freckles... or is tall... or is short... or is gay... or whatever. That's how they were made, that's how they are, and that's how they're going to be. To punish somebody or treat them as a lesser person because of who they are is discriminatory cruelty and not very human at all.

The long answer is a little more complex.

I've never written about it before because it's also a lot more personal.

If anybody cares, I've done my best to explain it all in an extended entry.

Back in March of 2004 I wrote an entry called The Bears of Berlin where I talk about getting an email from somebody who was hurting and confused and wrote to me because my life seems so great on my blog. This person thought that I had all the answers, and my life was a non-stop party of travel and good times. I wrote The Bears of Berlin to explain that the more personal aspects of my life don't get written about on my blog. Behind the scenes I have struggles, problems, and failings just like everybody does.

But that was just a very superficial recounting of what actually happened to get me to write that entry.

Here's the full story... or as much as the story as I'm willing to tell on a blog.

Five days before I wrote about a bear statue wearing lipstick, it was my birthday. My readership was pretty small back then because I was still in my first year of Blogography 2.0 and nobody knew who I was. But I got a couple comments and a half-dozen nice emails, which made me feel like the most popular blogger on earth. One of the emails from a reader I'll call "Henry" was not only wishing me a happy birthday, but also asking a lot of questions. Dozens of questions. Mostly about my work as a graphic designer, but also more personal questions about what I like to do when I'm not blogging, working, and traveling. I wrote back and answered his questions the best I could without going into too much detail (I don't dump the private details of my work or life on my blog, I'm certainly not going to email them to a stranger).

Within an hour, Henry had written me back, and he was positively thrilled to have received my reply. He then went on about himself... telling me about being a freshman in high school and about how he one day he wanted to be a graphic designer and travel the world just like me. I guess I'd describe his email as "charming" because of the way Henry was so hopeful about his future plans (even if they were a bit naive). He asked a few more questions, reiterated his thanks for my reply, and signed off with a drawing he made of his cat that was quite good. I wrote back to answer his queries, and thought for sure it would be the last I heard from Henry. I had been down this road before, and most of the time people disappear after they get the information they were looking for.

But Henry didn't disappear at all.

He wrote me back again that day. And the next day. And the day after that. Multiple times.

With each email, Henry had more questions and more details of his life. It was kind of an awkward email relationship seeing as how the guy was less than half my age, but he was genuinely nice kid, so I tried to be encouraging of his dream to become a graphic designer. But the volume of emails grew from awkward to disturbing, so I stopped replying to all of them and delayed my replies so as to discourage Henry from writing so much.

It was a plan doomed to failure. Henry was not deterred, and continued to write.

But the emails started to take a very different turn by day four. The hopeful emails I first received were now slowly turning to thinly veiled despair. By the time I received an email asking me if I would be Henry's friend because he didn't have any friends, I was understandably concerned. Being as delicate as I could be, I wrote an email asking Henry if everything was okay and sent it just before going to bed.

The reply I got when I woke up on March 28th changed my life forever.

I am not a very emotional person. I don't cry when I hear a sad song or get all teary-eyed watching Beaches. But reading Henry's email that morning destroyed me. My heart broke in my chest as I read about a young life filled with such misery, despair, and hopelessness that it was impossible to comprehend. By the time I had finished Henry's email, I felt like crying but was too shattered to do much of anything. I didn't work. I didn't eat. I didn't leave the house. I didn't write in my blog. I just sat there as I poured over the horrors in front of me, not knowing what to do.

Turns out Henry didn't have a very happy life.

Henry didn't have much of a life at all.

What he did have was a non-stop existence of suffering that would challenge even the strongest person.

In one of Henry's earlier emails he was asking his usual round of questions, one of which was "Are a lot of graphic designers gay? I think I read that somewhere." At the time, I didn't think anything of it because it was just one more question in a list of many. In response I wrote something like "I know graphics designers who are gay, I know graphic designers who are straight. It doesn't matter one way or another, because all anybody cares about is the work you do."

Little did I know that this one question was the entire reason Henry was writing to me.

This one question meant everything. This one question explained everything.

Henry thought he was gay but didn't know for sure. Everybody at school was certain Henry was gay, and teased him mercilessly about it. Not a day went by where Henry wasn't humiliated, belittled, made fun of, or even beaten. But that wasn't the worst part. The worst part was that Henry lived in a highly conservative town where he could find nobody to turn to for help and no place to seek refuge. Approaching his family was out of the question and would mean certain banishment. The one time he tried to talk about his troubles with somebody he thought was a sympathetic teacher, he was told he needed to pray for God to "fix" him. I don't doubt Henry prayed for this a lot, but seeking help at his church would undoubtedly lead to confronting his parents, which scared him so badly that he would rather die than attempt it.

And he wasn't kidding.

Fear ruled Henry's life, and finding a way to escape from it was his only desire.

Becoming a graphic designer and traveling the world was the best option for escape Henry had on his mind, but it didn't take a genius to see it wasn't the only option he was considering.

As I sat in bed reading Henry pour his heart out about the abject misery he had to endure, something changed inside of me. You don't read something this heartbreaking and not have something change inside of you. Yes I had gay friends. Yes I knew that being gay wasn't always a piece of cake (Matthew Shepard made this painfully clear six years prior). And yes I knew there was more to a person than just their sexuality. But I just didn't get it until that day Henry's email landed in my inbox. It was as if "gay" was some kind of wildly abstract term that had no real meaning to me until that moment.

Not knowing what to do... and I mean truly, honestly, deeply not knowing even remotely what to do for probably the first time in my life... I gathered my wits and contacted somebody I could trust to advise me in an impossible situation. I called one of those "God-hating faggots" who somehow managed to be a kind, decent, honorable man and valued friend... despite the fact that he was a "flaming queer." Barely able to speak, I read Henry's email over the phone and voiced my concerns over past emails I had been sent. I then had to sit through horrifying statistics about suicide rates for young homosexuals, and find out that all my fears for Henry were not only justified, but an entirely realistic outcome to his situation. Things went from bad to worse when I learned that helping Henry in any way could very likely result in my being sued, imprisoned, or even shot, if the parents felt I was "encouraging Henry to be gay" by way of "corrupting a minor."

Not only was Henry all alone in real life, but my not being able to help meant he was going to be alone online as well.

Or would have been if not for my "man-loving fag" of a friend who also happened to be incredibly brave (on top of kind, decent, and honorable). He gave me permission to pass his phone number along to Henry and have him call collect from a safe place. So I hung up the phone, then wrote back to Henry with all the understanding and compassion I could muster... begging him to call my friend for advice. I assured him that my friend was trustworthy over and over again, hoping against hope that Henry would trust me and pick up the phone.

Agonizing hours later, Henry wrote back and thanked me for trying to help and promised to think about calling my friend.

The next day I wrote about The Bears of Berlin and was finally able to cry. Not really for Henry, but for myself, knowing just how lucky I was to have had a life that didn't include wishing I was dead on a daily basis. Worrying that my "Bears" entry was too weepy, I cranked out two additional entries that day in a poor attempt at humor. The next day I worked even harder at being funny and ended up unleashing one of my favorite blog entries ever (though reading it now that you know what's behind it casts an entirely different light on things). I may have been changed forever on the inside, but I was doing my best to not let it show on the outside.

Just as I had come to terms with the fact that I would probably never hear from Henry again, my friend rings me up that weekend to say that he finally got a call. He starts with the bad news... Henry is a very confused and deeply depressed young man, and I have every reason to be concerned. The good news is that he felt sure he had convinced Henry that he needs to get help, and hooked him up with some support options. A follow-up call came a couple days later, and my friend said things sounded encouraging.

I did get one last email from Henry a couple months later. It didn't really say much past "I am gay, and it feels good to finally be able to tell somebody" which, in retrospect, says everything.

What happened after that I do not know. But I think about Henry more than I'd expect, and often wonder where he's at and how he's doing. If he was a freshman in high school then, that means he's undoubtedly graduated. Maybe he managed to escape to the life he dreamed about, and is even now out there living a life which has the happiness he was denied earlier. At least I hope so.

And now you know.

Now you know why I don't say idiotic shit like "that's so gay" when I think something is lame or stupid.

Now you know why I think making fun of gays and lesbians isn't very funny at all.

Now you know why I don't give a crap if people want to hate on me for being gay-friendly.

Now you know why I stand up for gay causes when I'm not gay.

Too many people just like Henry are struggling every day with how to deal with their sexuality when being a teenager is already hard enough. They deserve a world that embraces who they are instead of discriminates against them for their very existence. Four years ago somebody turned to me for help because there was nowhere else they could go. That saddens me more than I could ever put into words, but it also inspires me to make this world a better place... not just for Henry, but for everybody. And if telling Henry's story in any way convinces people to feel the same, then how can I not?

If you live in California, vote NO on Proposition 8 and make this world a better place.
If you live in Arkansas, vote NO on Proposition 1 and make this world a better place.

Because the person you help out by doing so may very well end up being your son or your daughter or your niece or your nephew or your neighbor or any of the people you hold dear. Even a reader of your blog. Making a better world for them makes a better world for everybody.

I think we're due.

UPDATE: Just in case anybody reading this is looking for help themselves, here are some resources...

  • Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual & Transgender National Hotline: 1-888-THE-GLNH (1-888-843-4564). Serves callers of all ages with peer counseling, information, and local resources.
  • Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual & Transgender National Youth Talkline: 1-800-246-PRIDE (1-800-246-7743). Youth serving youth through age 25 with peer counseling, information, and local resources.
  • The Trevor Project Hotline: 1-866-4-U-TREVOR (1-886-488-7386). Confidential, round-the-clock crisis and suicide prevention helpline for lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender and questioning youth. "If you or a friend is feeling lost or alone call The Trevor Helpline. There is hope, there is help..."
  • AVERT: www.avert.org. "A selection of useful pages aimed at young people who may be questioning their sexuality in the difficult period of adolescence."

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Comments

  1. Aunt Robin says:

    Thank you for being a voice of sanity in an insane world!

  2. Daisy says:

    This post makes me like you even more.

  3. ~jtm says:

    Thank you for that, Dave….
    ~as a proud parent of a proud gay child who unfortunately is suffering because she has to leave her truly loving and excepting family/home every day to face a world that isn’t.

  4. jenny says:

    This is such a touching and important story, Dave. Thanks so much for sharing it. :)

  5. Well, it’s my favorite blog entry ever. Thanks for writing about this, Dave. Last week I was contacted by some religious asshole from high school who I haven’t talked to in EIGHTEEN YEARS and he wanted to let me know that he heard rumors that I was a lesbian and he wanted to know if it was true. I get this every once in a while, although usually not from people who I haven’t even seen in so long. I guess it’s because I’m single and I speak out for equal rights for GLBT folks. I lead the GLBT support group at work, and try to take every opportunity to voice my support, no matter where I am or who I’m with. Last week at work I got an e-mail from someone I don’t know asking if he could schedule time to talk with me because he doesn’t know where to turn and he doesn’t feel like he can come to one of our meetings. He doesn’t want anyone to see him. I should say, I got an e-mail AGAIN from someone I don’t know asking to talk with me. It happens a lot. I also have a friendship over e-mail with a kid from Brazil who is in the exact same situation, it sounds like, as Henry was. He found me on a posting board somewhere about two years ago, and has written to me regularly ever since, just so he has one person in his life to talk with.

    I like to believe that if I had been alive in the 50′s and 60′s, I would have been on the front lines of the fight for equal rights for black Americans. THAT’S why I’m involved in this civil rights movement.

  6. Robbie says:

    Beautifully put!

  7. Wow Dave….I’m blown away by this. I hope you are able to locate Henry, and I hope that someday EVERYONE will have the rights we deserve. Florida has a gay marriage ban on its ballot and I voted against the ban. I hope my take on the issue wins. Even though I am not gay, I still want those who are to be entitled to the same rights as myself.

  8. Michelle says:

    Thank you for sharing that story. I hope Henry found happiness and acceptance.

  9. Sue says:

    Oh this tugged at the heart strings today.

  10. y not i says:

    Wow, Dave. Thank you for sharing that. I do feel the same. “Gay” rights = “human” rights — the right to be treated fairly and equally as a human being. It really shouldn’t be any more complicated than that and wouldn’t be if not for all the fearmongering and ideological bullshit.

  11. Mooselet says:

    Not many people would do what you did for that young man. You’re a hell of a human being, Dave.

  12. stef says:

    this is an incredibly moving story…you very possibly saved henry’s life. would that there were more people like you in the world, who realized that for every way in which we are different, we are all human, and should all be afforded the same treatment, and given the same rights.

  13. Kris says:

    Um, Dave? *SMOOCH*

    You’re a good egg, kiddo.

  14. ScottieC says:

    *applause* Thanks Dave.

  15. diane says:

    Dave–wow. Thanks for sharing this.

  16. Tracie says:

    This brought me to tears… I applaud you.

  17. delmer says:

    I had chills for most of the time I was reading that. Nice work.

    (I’d bet though, even without that experience, yours would be a voice of reason.)

  18. ChillyWilly says:

    I get emotional at times. Certain subjects and events bring it on. This story you told is one of those. I already knew what a caring and concerned individual you are before reading this, but this just confirms even more that the world needs more people like you. Plain and simple.

    I’m sure I posted it before, but one phrase I’ve used for years (decades) is: “At the end of the day, we are all human” For me, it describe and defines how I treat people and how I want to be treated.

    Thank again for posting someone from the personal life. My hope is that many of your readers ingesting this will be emotionally moved like I was this morning.

  19. What a wonderful story Dave. Makes my admiration for you that much more. Thanks for sharing it with us.

  20. Finn says:

    Dave, I don’t know if Henry ever was able to say this, but thank you. For him and all the other Henrys (and Henriettas) out there.

    The world needs more people like you.

  21. shiny says:

    I would say that this explains a lot — that it was a defining moment of how you became so caring and sensitive to equality despite diversity in sexual orientation.

    But I suspect you were pretty wonderful in this regard even before Henry.

    Either way – thanks for sharing. And thanks for continuing to embrace humanity and equality.

  22. Iron Fist says:

    This is really powerful, Dave. Wow. Thanks for sharing.

  23. cris says:

    Working with a woman I usually do a lot of projects with, I recently commented on the injustice towards gay marriage. She aggressively confronted me and asked if I thought marriage should also be between people of the same sex.

    I answered yes, and told her I did not believe anybody had the right to deny a person an opportunity for love and happiness. So this good friend, professional defender of the down trodden, highly educated Baptist Church attending, Republican voting woman called me a “sicko.”

  24. A Lewis says:

    Dave, Dave, Dave….I can’t even speak. Let alone breathe. I love the part where you simply talk about being a HUMAN. And caring. Knowing you, I know the feeling…the admiration…the comfortablness of it all. And how’d you kick the ass of anybody who tried to hurt me or anyone else, for that matter. Thanks for speaking up. We all need to.

  25. Don says:

    No you are not gay. We know that. You just happen to smart, compassionate, cute and have a great sense of humour. It’s a terrible curse for you to endure however we are all the better because of you.

  26. ETinNY says:

    I think I’ve said that you’re a good man, before but, right now I’m at a loss for which word to use that exceeds “good”. “Good” just isn’t good enough for you, Dave. I’m awfully proud to consider you a friend.

  27. Wow. Thank you so much for sharing that. I know you like to keep things less personal here, and I bet this must have been sort of difficult to share with us! I think it is sad that so many people feel so alone in the world. It is sad that a lot of things in our world are how they are. I certainly wish there were a lot more people like you in the world.

    My brother is a ballet dancer. He’s not gay (although that doesn’t really matter to me at all…why would I care whether my brother is attracted to men or women?), but people assume he is because of his career. I have seen what he has to endure, and it isn’t fun at all. I just feel so sad that people are so judgemental. This may sound dumb, but I really mean it…thank you so much for being you. You are really an amazing guy.

  28. Wow! Thanks for sharing the extended portion….

    I don’t even know how some of these idiotic proposals get on the ballot. I would think this would be making life harder for the foster care system.

  29. margalit says:

    What a sad but wonderful story. You are a true mensch in every sense of the word. When I read stuff like this, I thank any higher power there is that I live in Massachusetts, an essentially gay friendly state where gay marriage is legal, and where high schools have GLBT clubs and being gay is just what you are. My kids have gay friends and it’s no big deal, unlike when I was a kid in L.A. Some day the whole world might be gay accepting, but it takes people like you to make that happen. So thank you.

  30. Yun-Huei says:

    Thanks so much for sharing this story! Being in Singapore and gay means I can totally understand where your entry is coming from. Thankfully, despite being in quite an oppressive environment I think I’ve managed to handle being gay relatively well and have been blissfully attached for a number of years…

    Kudos to you for reaching out to Henry and I really hope he has found acceptance and happiness now…

  31. Sorata says:

    Hey Dave, I absolutely agree with Long Story Longer, this is my favourite blog entry EVER!

    I am gay myself, so for sure this topic is a sensitive issue. But thank you for sharing such a personal story with us. Your honesty is always what I look forward to when I come visit your blog everyday.

  32. Walt says:

    Dave:

    I never liked the nasty interpretation of the word “Gay.” I extremely hate that the word “fag” morphed into it’s current meaning. And, I am surrounded with a family of “religious nut cases.” But the one thing they firmly believe is “hate the sin and not the sinner.” It is in those few words that makes the difference. We all sin and that makes us all equal. I’m not much of a believer myself but it sounds more like something Jesus would have been teaching instead of hatred.

    I think a lot of believers are caught up in following mortal leaders more than spiritual lesson and like King Soloman’s followers have been lead astray.

  33. Penelope says:

    Bravo, applause and standing ovation!
    (And yes I know that’s not why you wrote it!)
    You did a good thing. I wish more people would do a few more good things :o)

  34. Zeynep says:

    Thank you, Dave.

  35. Tug says:

    Once again, you’re awesome. seriously.

    A friend of mine just went through this with her high school aged son, but thankfully she & her hubby were very supportive of him.

  36. Nat says:

    Speaks volumes of you as a person that you were willing to find someone to help him get through this.

    Re: Prop 1 — Makes me sad that in some places marriage and good parenting are synomymous… w

  37. Alasdair says:

    WOW man… like many others here I’m totally speachless.
    That post was so emotional and honest and well… just amazing. I’m sitting here thinking what to write but no words are coming. Just on some level I hope Henry is still reading your blog and maybe gets in touch after reading this. It’s weird how a simple reply to a few simple questions can change 2 peoples lives forever!!!

  38. Gina says:

    I know it’s been said already, but I want to say it myself:

    Thank you for sharing this with your readers. Thank you for making an effort in a stranger’s life, that could have very well changed his life forever. Thank you for letting us glimpse a bit of you that we normally do not get to see on the blog.

    You’re a phenomenal human being.

  39. So powerful! Thank you for sharing.

  40. S says:

    Dave, this post brought tears to my eyes, and I only cry about 3 times a year!

    I hope that “Henry” got out of his hometown and is happily living his life somewhere where he is accpeted for who he is.

  41. kapgar says:

    I remember reading bits and pieces of this story before but had no idea just how complex it was. You did the right thing. And all any of us can hope for is that Henry got the help he needed and is living a better life. We can hope…

  42. Naomi says:

    Gay people come from gay storks of course. Your parents didn’t do a very good job of explaining the birds and the bees to you…

  43. karla says:

    I so love you. And not in a gay or hetero way. Just in a human way.

  44. Hilly says:

    I’m so glad that Henry found you – someone with the kindest heart and the biggest amount of compassion of almost anyone I know. Think how terrible it would have been had he reached out to a homophobe who hurt him even more under the guise of helping him.

    You rock and thanks for sharing.

  45. shiny says:

    @Naomi – I always mistook the gay stork for the rainbow colored toucan on the front of the Froot Loops box…

  46. suze says:

    What you did for that boy was wonderful. More people should be like you – think of what this world would be like if we all reached out to help a stranger in need…

    Thank you for putting into words why it’s important for people to care about issues that on the surface don’t appear to apply to them – it’s all about fairness. Love is beautiful and precious and should be celebrated…

  47. ERin says:

    I have a friend in high school who ended up committing suicide as a result of the abuse he endured because of his sexuality. At the time (we were the same age), I was too young to help him. Looking back, I just wish there was something I could have done. Thank you for being kind, and for helping Henry. You’re an inspiration.

  48. claire says:

    Thanks so much for sharing your story, Dave. I hope it opens some people’s minds to non-discriminatory compassion.

    Also, I hate when people call stuff “gay” to mean “lame” as though it doesn’t matter. Thanks for not doing that and for supporting the rights of LGBT folks on your blog.

  49. fantastic post, dave. powerful. i truly appreciate your sharing your story.

    henry, if you are out there, i’m so hating that you had to deal with ugly people. i wish you all the best.

    becky

  50. Göran says:

    Thank you for sharing this story. It´s sad that Henrys story happens all the time in modern, enlightened societies and it´s sad that you feel the need to justify being human and standing up for human rights.

    But it´s so awsome that you do stand up like this time after time with important issues of all kinds. You are a role model Dave!

  51. Thanks so much for sharing this deeply personal story. Reminds me of a few people that have reached out to me throughout the years. I only hope I was as helpful as you obviously were.

  52. Tracy Lynn says:

    This just backs up what I have always told my nieces. If someone needs help, and you can, you should. We are all responsible for each other.

  53. Dory says:

    Thank you SO much for sharing that. I had goosebumps almost the whole time. You are good people.

  54. Robin says:

    Unfortunately, people that support this type of legislation raise their children to believe this kind of BS. Last time I checked there are lots of people with the “piece of paper” that are crappy parents.

    As for Henry, he found your blog for a reason. He needed an angel just then. And he found one. ;-)

  55. Matt says:

    I’m kinda in love with you right now.

  56. Troy says:

    Well put indeed. And thanks for being there for Henry.

  57. bluepaintred says:

    At first, I wasn’t going to comment on this post. What more can I say about how awesome what you did was? Everything I would want to type in this box has already been said.

    But. I can’t just walk away from here without saying something. so I will just say thank you.

  58. Patty says:

    Thanks for sharing your story Dave. It is so sad how some people discriminate against others. If some day everyone acted human to each other…wow what a world that would be.

  59. spants says:

    This post is why you should breed!

  60. Sarah says:

    Dave,
    Just when I think I couldn’t love your blog enough you write something like this and I love you just a little bit more.

  61. Mik says:

    Good for you Dave, hopefully Henry is leading a better life because he made the decision to write to you and you did what you did.

  62. Henry’s is a truly moving story. Thank you for sharing it Dave.
    It’s ever such a shame that the people who really NEED to read and empathize with personal accounts like Henry’s are not open minded enough to allow their hearts or minds to be touched by them.
    Robyn

  63. Whitenoise says:

    You’re okay, Dave. In fact, I think anyone would be lucky to have you as a friend…

  64. Scholiast says:

    That was a great read – for every reason. Hope Henry is ok, and if he is, it’s a little bit because of you …! I completely agree, it shouldn’t matter if people are this or that, but it does, and that makes it important that people like you (and your friend!) are here :)

    - First visit to your blog, will read on!

  65. PocketCT says:

    This is really wonderful.

  66. Cap says:

    Thank you for sharing this story. Like someone else already said, it makes me like you more and it gives me a little insight into what makes you tick.

    It breaks my heart that there are kids out there who have nowhere to turn – so I’m extra glad this boy gathered the courage to email you.

  67. Brandon says:

    Great post Dave. I hope that Henry is able to live his life and be himself now. I wonder if he’ll see this and let you know how he’s doing.

    By the way, I think Florida has an initiative just like California’s on their ballots too, though I don’t know much about it.

  68. Patrick D. says:

    I’ve been reading this blog for awhile and haven’t commented (at least, I think I haven’t). Kind of lurking, I guess. But I have to say this: f*cking wow. This is an amazing post. Thanks for sharing this.

    This is what blogging should be about. This and of course, fart jokes.

    But seriously, great post.

  69. Hi Dave,
    This post is so well articulated and so moving! I really thank you so much for posting this. I respect you dude! Your a good man!!!

    Michelle

  70. Karl says:

    Amen, dude. Great post. Hope he’s doing well.

  71. kilax says:

    Thank you for sharing the whole story. I wish more people would be accepting like you, without having to go through something like this.

  72. mike says:

    Congratulations on winning Post of the Week.

    We always invite the recipients of this award to help judge the next week’s shortlist. If you’d like to take part, please e-mail me.

  73. Tug says:

    Congrats on the Post of the Week! Well deserved.

    I wore my bad monkey shirt to Walgreens today, & totally had to hear about 100 scenarios on what could happen if monkey pushed the button (while waiting at the register for a price check). ;-)

  74. Silvertongue says:

    Dave, thank you. I am convinced that Henry was directed by a higher power to contact you, because you were the exact person he needed in his life at that moment.

    As the best friend of one the two most amazing gay men on the planet and the niece of the other one, *GIGANTIC HUG*.

  75. Justin Scott says:

    What an absolutely awesome post. I’m glad you are here fighting for the rights of Ryan and I. We someday want to marry and adopt children and it seems there are those who will stop at nothing to destroy our dreams together.

  76. Shannon says:

    I haven’t commented in a while and I know I’m a little late, but thanks for being awesome and a great human being. This post made me teary eyed (a rare feat indeed!)

  77. Dickie Maxx says:

    Dave I know I read this when you wrote it, but I am sure I was too worked up about Prop 8 to have it effect me. Henry was very lucky to have you in his life. And you are truly just a kind wonderful human being.

  78. muskrat says:

    How awful…have you heard from him in the nearly 2 years since you wrote this? Hope he’s doing okay…glad you were able to help.

    See, the internet CAN be used for good!

  79. Kimberly says:

    We need more people of courage like you (and your friend who helped Henry) in this world. I hope to be one of them.

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