• Mathura Hawley

commitment


I kept the rings, hoping to eventually meet someone worthy of them, and tried to give one to the second boyfriend, wanting badly to be in a couple that would be serious, even though our open relationship ensured that could never happen. "

I was so excited to love and be loved by a man, finally, at the age of 35, that I thought I wanted to marry him. It was premature in every way, but going to pick out a ring seemed like a lifelong dream come true. To be out, be in love, have a boyfriend, and be part of a male couple was thrilling and overwhelming. Most of my generation of gay men never went to a prom, held a male hand in the public of their small town, got a kiss at a football game, or danced closely with someone they crushed on. Instead, we had secret sex at rest areas, in bathroom stalls, or in the beds of strangers who were brave enough to live a gay lifestyle. When we finally came out, usually later in life, we often made poor choices based on very little experience, and the rings I bought to celebrate my first gay “friendship,” platinum from a custom designer in San Francisco, were thrown back in my face in a fit of Diva, the rings, and me, completely rejected. I kept the rings, hoping to eventually meet someone worthy of them, and tried to give one to the second boyfriend, wanting badly to be in a couple that would be serious, even though our open relationship ensured that could never happen. One of the rings stayed behind as a momento of eight years of friendship, as I was abruptly exited, a tearful whisper of goodbye into the ear of my sweet dog, who died weeks later without me by his side. For men, being in a relationship with another man can often be a struggle of power and ego, with the balance of sex and love precariously fragile, no gay relationship immune. Today, I sit here alone, wondering if I will ever make that genuine connection that will hold tight to me over the humps and stumbles, if I will ever find someone who understands that knowing too much about another can be a path to grace and kindness. I wear the ring I bought, so many years ago, on my left hand. I think it was always meant just for me. I will wear it there as a reminder of my own strength, my will to survive, a lifelong expedition to accept who I am, and as a promise to never, ever let myself down again.



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Mathura hosts an LGTBQ+ Podcast featuring guests who've been through some shit 

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