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A traveller's tale

It’s Saturday morning and I’m recovering from a fab night on the town. Now getting ready to take my five year old to a kids concert with his wee pal. One night a disco bunny the next a sensible father. Being a gay Dad is full of variety if nothing else!

I have two lovely boys, the eldest soon to be ten. I came out at twenty-four and settled into my first relationship. My best friend from university returned to Glasgow from London and moved into a flat I shared with my boyfriend. The latter turned out to be a freak; a compulsive liar who told everyone, including his parents, that he was dying to try and keep our relationship together. Great introduction to the gay life. I chucked him out and leant heavily on my new flat mate for support. That support soon extended beyond simple tea and sympathy into the bedroom. These things happen you may say apart from the fact that the flat mate was a woman. Talk about confused! I decided to go with the flow and fell head over heals in love. !

I parked my gay side - maybe it was just a phase? We moved into a new house and she decided to take off round the world for six months before fully settling down. I missed her terribly. I walked into town to do some shopping one day and came back with a return ticket to Australia - as you do! I was going to get my woman back; Barbara Cartland eat your heart out. !

We had a great time and I left her to finish the trip. I soon got a call, she was going to come home early as she missed me too much. I was ecstatic to say the least and we soon settled back into normality - for two weeks. A visit to the family planning clinic ended up in a pregnancy test which turned out positive. Some folks name their kids after the place they were conceived - if we followed that then our eldest should be called Woolamlaoo which I don’t think he’d be too happy about. !

So I became a Dad. Then number two came along. Again we resisted his conception locale as a name; Govan doesn’t quite have the same ring to it. Things started to go pear shaped. Communications broke down entirely and I developed panic attacks. I had to take a month off work and at night would go to sleep wishing I wouldn’t wake up. I visited my doctor who suggested I should get some counselling. I was willing to try anything to get out of that dark place. !

The counselling sessions were hard, especially as we drilled down and looked at the causes of my anxiety. Guess I had always known it - there was a basic conflict going on in my head, living with a woman, wanting to be with a man. I finished the sessions after six months. I had to change to get my life back. Identifying the cause, I thought, would have been the difficult part but it turned out that the biggest hurdle to get over was making that change. I had a further year of turmoil until one morning, almost exactly four years ago, I was told to leave. The emotions were immense; incredible sadness at leaving the kids but an overwhelming feeling of relief that the change had been made. !

I moved in with friends for six months before buying my present flat. Things have been difficult with my ex. She hates me and what I’ve done to her. Feels betrayed and humiliated - her words. I tried initially to please her and was way overgenerous with the settlement from the separation. In many ways I think I was trying to negate the terrible guilt I felt for leaving my family even though I had no choice in the matter. Now I figure no matter what I do it will be wrong so I just do what I think is right, not what I think will please her. !

She has moved to the east coast with the kids which means seeing them involves a three hour round trip. On top of that my father died two years ago and I had to put my disabled mother into a nursing home on the west coast. I have dependants on either side of the country which results in my car being my main abode. We only communicate by e mail and she can’t bare to look at me. !

Things could be better but even though I don’t see the kids as often as I’d like, I now live in a tiny flat in the non fashionable side of town and have a constant battle balancing the books, I can safely say I’ve never been happier. I am being me and that’s worth the hassles a million fold. !

I’m the luckiest man in the world, I have two super kids who I love deeply, have great friends and I’m now out the darkness. Every day just gets better. No more wishing never to wake up instead I can’t wait until the morning to see what adventures the day will bring. !

So that’s my story and this disco bunny has to jump into his second home and collect the boys. Daddy mode now and I love it! The Tweenies here I come..... or was that last night....oh no sorry, that was the Queenies. !

....and my words of wisdom - Always be you no matter how difficult getting there may seem. Never do what others think is right but what you know is right and always remember your nearest and dearest will love the real you more than a lie. !

Take care and best of luck.

Other stories...


Tom's story
I knew that already Dad
Turning my world upside down
David, the military officer
Scared of judgement


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