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You are here: Home > Forum > A Place of Safety > General Talk > A letter to your 16 year old self
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A letter to your 16 year old self  [message #59160] Sun, 18 October 2009 20:12 Go to next message
Nigel is currently offline  Nigel   United Kingdom

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In today's Sunday Telegraph magazine an article consisted of several celebrities who from a wiser and older age wrote letters to their 16 year old selves with warnings and advice. Would any of our posters like to attempt such a task? I won't as it will be a repaeat of what I write in my stories.

The most interesting one was from Elton John to Reg Dwight.

Hugs
N



I dream of boys with big bulges in their trousers,
Never of girls with big bulges in their blouses.

…and look forward to meeting you in Cóito.
Re: A letter to your 16 year old self  [message #59161 is a reply to message #59160] Sun, 18 October 2009 21:25 Go to previous messageGo to next message
timmy   United Kingdom

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That sounds like an interesting project. I'll have some thought and give it a go



Author of Queer Me! Halfway Between Flying and Crying - the true story of life for a gay boy in the Swinging Sixties in a British all male Public School
Re: A letter to your 16 year old self  [message #59162 is a reply to message #59160] Sun, 18 October 2009 22:09 Go to previous messageGo to next message
NW is currently offline  NW   United Kingdom

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The three things you probably most need to hear are:

a) yes, you're right, your temporary diversion into heterosexuality is merely an adolescent phase.

b) yes, you're right, this lifestyle of heavy drug-taking *will* fuck your brain up ... but no, you'll never actually regret it and will feel that on balance it enormously contributed to the kind of person you grow into.

c) don't worry so much about "selling out" in middle age - you'll do it rather less than you think.

Apart from that:
as for our father ... things will deteriorate to the point where you don't speak for 20 years. But things will be patched up just before he dies, so don't worry too much about it.

no, you'll never be rich - you'll have periods where you earn a reasonable amount in a conventionally successful job, and periods where you won't. But life will generally be fun (and you'll be able to look at yourself in the mirror in the mornings without blushing too much).

Enjoy the next 40 years - I did! And I think you'd be proud of me. I certainly hope so. Looking back, I'm damn proud of you!



"The ultimate weakness of violence is that it is a descending spiral, begetting the very thing it seeks to destroy. ... Returning violence for violence multiplies violence, adding deeper darkness to a night devoid of stars." Martin Luther King
Re: A letter to your 16 year old self  [message #59163 is a reply to message #59160] Mon, 19 October 2009 01:33 Go to previous messageGo to next message
Macky is currently offline  Macky   United States

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I know that age and experience should have taught me something. But the 58 year old me couldn't provide a word of useful advice to the 16 year old me. It was all just so utterly hopeless, that looking back 42 years I still wouldn't know what to do about it. Or, perhaps, I'm just not that much different now than I ever was.



Behold, how good and how pleasant it is
For brothers to dwell together in unity!
Ps 133:1 NASB
Re: A letter to your 16 year old self  [message #59167 is a reply to message #59161] Mon, 19 October 2009 10:00 Go to previous messageGo to next message
timmy   United Kingdom

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That was an interesting exercise. Now I have to think about whether and where to place it



Author of Queer Me! Halfway Between Flying and Crying - the true story of life for a gay boy in the Swinging Sixties in a British all male Public School
Re: A letter to your 16 year old self  [message #59168 is a reply to message #59160] Mon, 19 October 2009 10:13 Go to previous messageGo to next message
acam is currently offline  acam   United Kingdom

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I'd like to read the atricle but the Telegraph web site doesn't seem to have it yet.

I've been thinking about it for ten minutes and I'm baffled because at the age of sixteen either I hadn't woken up to sexual attraction or I've since forgotten about it (and surely that is the least likely thing to forget).

So what I needed was for someone to wake me up to it - but maybe that would be a mistake too as I don't think I would have been able to handle all the emotions and so on. I feel sure my parents would have realised and I wonder what would have happened if they did. I think that they would have been condemning and unforgiving but I can't be sure.

And if my sixteen year old self had been told he would be homosexual I fear the effect would have been catastrophic.

But I would *really* like to read what other people would like their sixteen year old selves to have read.

Love,
Anthony
Re: A letter to your 16 year old self  [message #59171 is a reply to message #59167] Mon, 19 October 2009 21:39 Go to previous messageGo to next message
timmy   United Kingdom

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Well, I have done it. I'd love to see the Sunday Telegraph article, and it isn't on their site, so I imagine it never will be.

I've put it here:

http://ipad.io/Pcr

[Updated on: Fri, 07 October 2016 21:14]




Author of Queer Me! Halfway Between Flying and Crying - the true story of life for a gay boy in the Swinging Sixties in a British all male Public School
Re: A letter to your 16 year old self  [message #59180 is a reply to message #59168] Wed, 21 October 2009 03:12 Go to previous messageGo to next message
kiwi is currently offline  kiwi   New Zealand

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I did that once, in reverse. At fifteen I wrote a letter to myself at fifty, sealed it in an envelope and put it in my box of souvenirs.

Unfortunately, the box was lost in a fire. Or, maybe that was a good thing. Can't remember exactly what it said, but it was basically a list of things that I'd be a failure if I hadn't achieved them. None of them involved money.

Not sure if I'm a failure or not, but I was an arrogant little sod at 15, very idealistic and very judgemental.

BTW. This was in our news today - http://www.stuff.co.nz/entertainment/celebrities/2981531/Elton-Johns-sexual-regrets

cheers



Commas matter - 'Party on Dudes' is not the same as 'Party on, Dudes'
Re: A letter to your 16 year old self  [message #59181 is a reply to message #59180] Wed, 21 October 2009 05:30 Go to previous messageGo to next message
ray2x is currently offline  ray2x   United States

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I guess a beginning of a letter to my sixteen year old self would include that life doesn't have to happen right now. Life will be waiting. Sixteen was such an intense time for my generation. The Vietnam War was still going on and the draft was still churning. Plus, there were pimples, getting dates to the upcoming proms (with a girl:-O), getting through an other day's sports practice, getting college requirements straight and wondering about which clothes fit this week. No wonder there was little time to wonder if I was gay or decide which guys were good looking.



Raymundo
Thank you  [message #59184 is a reply to message #59160] Wed, 21 October 2009 08:15 Go to previous messageGo to next message
timmy   United Kingdom

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The stimulus to do this was welcome and I enjoyed writing my letter. Interestingly my doing so has spurred a Facebook and business contact to do the same.

I wonder if my younger self was capable of taking advice? We often say "If I could do it all over again knowing what I know now..." don't we? I wonder if that means that "now" would change...

[Updated on: Wed, 21 October 2009 08:15]




Author of Queer Me! Halfway Between Flying and Crying - the true story of life for a gay boy in the Swinging Sixties in a British all male Public School
Re: A letter to your 16 year old self  [message #59186 is a reply to message #59180] Wed, 21 October 2009 10:11 Go to previous messageGo to next message
acam is currently offline  acam   United Kingdom

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Dear Kiwi,
So was I (you wrote "but I was an arrogant little sod at 15, very idealistic and very judgemental"). The difference is that I still am - it's just that I temper what I say so the arrogance isn't too offensive (I hope).

But I'm very glad to see you here and hope to hear more of you.

Love,
Anthony
Re: Thank you  [message #59187 is a reply to message #59184] Wed, 21 October 2009 10:21 Go to previous messageGo to next message
acam is currently offline  acam   United Kingdom

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Dear Timmy,
You wrote:

I wonder if my younger self was capable of taking advice? We often say "If I could do it all over again knowing what I know now..." don't we? I wonder if that means that "now" would change...

Even if you wouldn't take advice the knowledge would change you. The effect might be that you rebel against it but for it to have no effect you would have not to hear it.

I think if I had been told at 16 that I was going to be homosexual I might have despaired. On the other hand I might have been stimulated to explore - and that might have greatly reduced the frustrations of adolescence. But I doubt that I would have. I wasn't brave and I was a good little boy and didn't rebel and took my parents' advice.

Love,
Anthony
Re: Thank you  [message #59198 is a reply to message #59187] Wed, 21 October 2009 20:45 Go to previous messageGo to next message
Nigel is currently offline  Nigel   United Kingdom

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If I had been convinced at 16 I was homosexual, I would have gone for it. It has been the denial that has banjaxed me.

Hugs
N

[Updated on: Thu, 22 October 2009 07:04]




I dream of boys with big bulges in their trousers,
Never of girls with big bulges in their blouses.

…and look forward to meeting you in Cóito.
Difficult  [message #59205 is a reply to message #59160] Thu, 22 October 2009 01:22 Go to previous messageGo to next message
nick is currently offline  nick   United Kingdom

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I don't know about warnings and advice. I suspect that the thing that my 16 year old self would want most is reassurance. And I am not sure that I could tell him what he wants to hear.

I would not be able to write: "Don't worry, you too will discover girls".

I would not be able to write: "You will meet someone special and fall in love".

I would not be able to write: "You will marry and have children".

I could reassure him that he will learn to be independent and self-reliant. That will save him from feeling vulnerable, but ultimately will not be enough to make him truly fulfilled.

Probably better to stay silent.
interesting, but not wholly right  [message #59208 is a reply to message #59205] Thu, 22 October 2009 06:50 Go to previous messageGo to next message
timmy   United Kingdom

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I think you may be missing the point a little.

The letter is to help the lad understand what will happen if he continues on his current track and how that track could be so different. I am not happy with the way I have created my life either. So I wrote to kid-me to tell him a few simple things, hard to execute, that are likely to alter things for him for the better.



Author of Queer Me! Halfway Between Flying and Crying - the true story of life for a gay boy in the Swinging Sixties in a British all male Public School
Re: interesting, but not wholly right  [message #59210 is a reply to message #59208] Thu, 22 October 2009 08:12 Go to previous messageGo to next message
nick is currently offline  nick   United Kingdom

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That's a fair point, Timmy. It is after all a letter and not a dialogue, which gives the older me the privilege of choosing what to say (and the things that are better left unsaid).

I think I would tell him that I recognise that he is a natural introvert, but he should nevertheless strive to become genuinely interested in other people and seize opportunities for friendship. He should worry less about what other people think of him and realise that he can make a positive difference.

Actually, come to think of it I could probably write almost the same letter to my present day self.
Re: interesting, but not wholly right  [message #59215 is a reply to message #59210] Thu, 22 October 2009 14:52 Go to previous messageGo to next message
timmy   United Kingdom

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Now that you think you know, why not write him the letter? The 16 year old kid, I mean.



Author of Queer Me! Halfway Between Flying and Crying - the true story of life for a gay boy in the Swinging Sixties in a British all male Public School
Re: A letter to your 16 year old self  [message #59232 is a reply to message #59171] Sat, 24 October 2009 01:01 Go to previous messageGo to next message
saben is currently offline  saben   Australia

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I found myself believing it. And hoping that 16 year old Tim would listen.

Coming back to the real world and realising that it's a fiction fills me with sadness and remorse.

We've dug our graves. We've followed the paths we took and have to make the most of what we have now.

I find it hard to appreciate now. I want to return to "then". Even though I didn't like it at the time it's got a glossy shine over time. The parts I did like really do stick out. That doesn't happen much in the present.



Look at this tree. I cannot make it blossom when it suits me nor make it bear fruit before its time [...] No matter what you do, that seed will grow to be a peach tree. You may wish for an apple or an orange, but you will get a peach.
Master Oogway
Re: A letter to your 16 year old self  [message #59236 is a reply to message #59232] Sat, 24 October 2009 19:13 Go to previous messageGo to next message
Macky is currently offline  Macky   United States

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"We've dug our graves. We've followed the paths we took and have to make the most of what we have now."

This is basically true, but don't you think it's a little harsh to say we dug our graves....maybe I'm just touchy about that language since I am an old guy. Yes, we've had missed opportunities, but that's life. We would have had missed opportunities no matter what.

"I find it hard to appreciate now. I want to return to "then". Even though I didn't like it at the time it's got a glossy shine over time. The parts I did like really do stick out. That doesn't happen much in the present."

The parts you liked stick out because they were viewed and remembered through the rose colored glasses of childhood. That's one thing I really liked about Timmy's letter. No rose colored glasses. He expresses sorrow over missed opportunities, but admits, had he become openly gay way back when, he might have gotten AIDS and died. I think it's very important to see both sides. Oh, and it is happening in the present, but you won't realize it until you're 50 or 60. Carpe diem.

Now, I'll work on thinking of something that was good about my younger years, because it just seems to have been a total mess for me. Where the hell did I put those rose colored glasses? Macky



Behold, how good and how pleasant it is
For brothers to dwell together in unity!
Ps 133:1 NASB
Re: A letter to my 16 year old self (March 2010)  [message #61395 is a reply to message #59160] Tue, 16 March 2010 21:50 Go to previous messageGo to next message
acam is currently offline  acam   United Kingdom

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Here is my contribution - as you see I took a long time thinking about it.

Love,
Anthony

To Anthony on his sixteenth birthday: 4th December 1950

Dear 16-year-old Anthony,

I am now nearly 59 years older than you and have spent a lot of my 75th year owning up to things about myself. If you have the courage you may avoid needing to own up to yourself when you are so old, but I cannot tell whether things would turn out better if you do. The hard message I have to give you is that you will turn out to be predominantly homosexual (maybe a little bit bi). The question is what to do about it (apart from having sex with other men, of course).

If I remember right, at the moment you have no insight into what your sexual feelings are; when you masturbate you have no fantasies; you have no ‘special’ friends who you would like to be more than friends. If you go on walking round with your eyes shut – as it were - you will not discover sex (as I did not) until you are 19. From my perspective this seems rather a waste of your randiest years. By the way don’t worry about masturbation. It isn’t wrong and it does you no harm and worrying about it is just a waste of emotional energy.

On the other hand, as all homosexual acts are illegal and you will very likely be punished if you get caught, maybe it would be kinder to leave you in the dark and let things slide the way they did for me. My reason for not doing that is my suspicion that if only you could become aware of yourself and come to terms with yourself your academic and other performance could easily exceed the best that I ever managed. I think self-awareness is vastly to be preferred to not understanding oneself.

The evidence that you could do better than I did is extensive. I took my ‘A’ levels at 16 and passed in History and English at grade 3 and then took them again at scholarship level the following year and got lower grades (5s) in both. Then I learned Russian on my national service and began by being top of the class and gradually got worse and worse. Then, when I took up my scholarship at Oriel, I failed the first examination (prelims) and was deprived of my scholar’s gown and eventually ended with a third class degree. Some of that I put down to falling in love which was unrequited and the way I yielded to those pressures. None of these results adequately reflected my abilities. Of course it would be easy to do even worse and if you try to be yourself and get rejected you might well do worse, but I have reasons (summarised in the next two paragraphs) for supposing you could be surprised by how much support you get.

When my father died he left his autobiography in a cupboard in the sitting room at my parents’ house. I found it quite some months later when clearing out the cupboard. My mother and brother were in the room and neither they nor I had the least idea that he had written such a document or had it professionally typed. It was called “A Chequered Childhood” because it ended when he was working in his first job as a clerk for a merchant bank called Frederick Houth and Co in the city of London. When I read it, I felt there was a similarity between the sudden way he gave up that job and moved to Staffordshire in 1929 and the way I left Oxford and went back to London in 1960. I was trying to get away from homosexual attraction and I wondered whether he was too. In the whole of his life up to then there is no mention of his feeling attracted to anyone and, in particular, no mention of a girl. Anyway, within months of arriving in Staffordshire he had met and successfully wooed my mother. They married on 16th December 1933.

My parents seem always to have had friends who were homosexual. I remember when we lived in Edgeware (1943-1946) they had dinner parties and at one was Geoffrey Wincott (he played Eeyore in the Childrens’ Hour version of Winnie the Pooh). I would have been 9 or 10 and we children teased the adults and they would chase us and tickle us. I was teasing Geoffrey from a bedroom window and he threw a green apple at me which broke a pane of glass.

When my father set up a trust fund to pay for university education for me and my brother (so as to save the tax on whatever he paid to the trust) he appointed Cedric Cliffe to be the trustee. Cedric had been navigator in a Boulton Paul Defiant night fighter during the war and had fallen in love with the rear gunner who was killed in action.

When the V2s started landing on London one of them fell on a house adjacent to the Hampstead Public Library in Arkwright Road. Andrew and Lizzie Ware, who were some other friends of my parents, lived in a flat in that house (they were out at the time). Andrew was a ballet dancer and I remember my scandalised mother telling me how Geoffrey Wincott got drunk at some party my parents went to and told everyone he had ‘had’ Andrew.

With parental support you might survive better than I actually did – unaware at first and then too scared to tell anyone and having to hide my true feelings and my nature. Of course even if your parents accept you (and there is considerable room for doubt whether my mother will) you would still have to stay closeted to the world outside. That would still be a strain.

Maybe earlier self-knowledge might enable you to be prepared for meeting people who you are attracted to and to handle such relationships better. Today’s sixteen-year-olds are much more street-wise than I was or you will be if you don’t do something about it. About 25 years after I left school one of my best friends at school (Ivo Bondy) told me that Nicholas Ragg, my only other really close friend, had been in love with me when we were at school together. When he told me that, it was a revelation - it was so obvious to me that it was true. Nicholas became a worker-priest and I guess it was his religion that dissuaded him from making any kind of approach to me. I would have jumped at the chance if he had. I wonder whether you might be nicer to him than I was if you realise, as Ivo did (and you now will) how he felt? I wonder whether we would both have been happier if I had known? Well now you will know and I hope the knowledge doesn’t create difficulties for you.

‘Now you will know’, I wrote – but as you will see from the rest of this letter, you are not faced with a fait accompli – you do not have to adopt a gay lifestyle. You do not have to have sex with another man and you certainly can get married and live an outwardly normal heterosexual life. I doubt whether I would have had the will-power to achieve such a thing – but I was so lacking in self-knowledge that I didn’t know what I wanted. Maybe if I had known I could have chosen a path and stuck to it. I mean that maybe you could choose not to have sex with men. I don’t recommend such a course because the sex is so enjoyable and frustration is so awful, but maybe you could make it work. But you have nearly three years of school to do and two years of national service and three years at university and at least some working time after that before there is any prospect of a settled heterosexual partnership. Maybe if you don’t join the boat club and spend the time trying to find a girl you could succeed in finding someone at Oxford. That could certainly be better than what I did. I don’t hold up much hope because there were so many men to every girl and because of the difficulties the colleges put in the way: college gates locked at 10:30 and female visitors had to be out of college by eight. And in any case that would require you to manage somehow for the next five years.

One problem for me with being homosexual was that opportunities came up so rarely and when they did I was so desperate for them that I didn’t hesitate to have sex with anyone that offered and that included some unsuitable people. Wasn’t I lucky that I never caught anything worse than crabs – and the crabs I did not catch from a sexual contact? I was quite unprepared for Sergeant Brooks to declare his love for me and handled that problem miserably. You must do better, either by not having sex with him at all (maybe then he wouldn’t fall for you) or by being nicer to him.

And now you will be able to see why it is that you find Peter Singer so pretty and are so mesmerised by the length of Mike Boutwood’s prick. Perhaps you will be able to produce some telling rejoinder when that stoker asks you the first question when you entered the lower foc’sle mess on HMS Corunna “Why are all coders queer?” Maybe you will have the sense not to be so eager to make friends with Roger Boddy after you saw him sunbathing in his jockstrap.

And when you get out of the navy at last and go to Oriel, maybe your life will be slightly different so that you don’t spend the first few days in bed with ‘flu as I did and then, partly in consequence, (because of missing all the introductory stuff) join the boat club. You will be better off if you don’t commit yourself to such huge amounts of training time as I did which made it hard to keep up with the academic work. Maybe I would not then have fallen in love with David and maybe you won’t. Maybe if you don’t then you won’t go to bed with Roy on the rebound. And if you don’t do that you will eliminate one huge reason I had for being unhappy with myself that lasted almost the whole time I was at university. And perhaps you might get to know Rex Nettleford or Simon Hardwick or some of the many other nice people that I never realised were homosexual when I was at Oriel. In any case I would not recommend having sex with Roy because I don’t remember him ever having a satisfactory orgasm and, for me, a large part of the joy of sex is sending your partner into ecstasy. If you do fall in love with David and get rejected maybe you can find someone better to rebound into.

And, when you start work you ought to get to know Mike Benzing better. He’s straight but he notices things and many years later he told me that another of the programmers had a crush on me or more. By coming out to him you would gain a kind and friendly ally. Of course you cannot afford to come ‘out’ to the world until the law is changed towards the end of 1967 and probably not even then.

The big questions are still to come! If this advice turns out to be good and you are better able to accept yourself maybe you will not want to escape from Oxford and abandon the hope of finding a gay lover that you could commit to. I decided I wanted to give up and go and see if I could live a straight life – and I did, to my amazement. So you probably can too. I can recommend it. You easily become an accepted member of society and that makes so many things so much easier. Nor can I pretend that I felt deprived at all on the sexual front and doubt whether you will. And when I had been married for a little over five years and had two little girls the law was changed to decriminalise sex between two men if both were over 21 and it was done behind a locked door.
And the great divide is having children. The greatest task anyone ever undertakes is bringing up children. It is a huge burden and rewarding in equal measure. If you decide to live as a gay man then I can only say ‘adopt’ but only if your partner is equally committed to it. And if you get married, as I did, all I can say is I wish you well and you will be lucky to do as well as I did. I’ve never met anyone who comes close to being as kind or wise or committed as Sylvia. I was very lucky to find her and very lucky she liked me. In fact I think she chose me more than I chose her. I mean that she had a choice whereas I don’t think I ever felt I really did.

And now I have been thinking about what advice I would give you for some time and writing about it over three days, I realise that what I am expecting you to do is broadly what I did but without the hang-ups and avoiding the pitfalls. And that makes me think how extremely lucky I have been to live the life I have.

What about a reply from you telling me how you get on and maybe even giving me some advice in turn?

[edited to add blank lines between paras for online readability - timmy]

[Updated on: Tue, 16 March 2010 23:24] by Moderator

Re: A letter to my 16 year old self (March 2010)  [message #61396 is a reply to message #61395] Tue, 16 March 2010 23:26 Go to previous messageGo to next message
timmy   United Kingdom

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I'm glad you did that Smile Thank you.



Author of Queer Me! Halfway Between Flying and Crying - the true story of life for a gay boy in the Swinging Sixties in a British all male Public School
Re: A letter to your 16 year old self  [message #61397 is a reply to message #59232] Tue, 16 March 2010 23:36 Go to previous messageGo to next message
timmy   United Kingdom

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I reread this today.

For me, for you, it is a fiction, a conceit if you will, that we can return to our 16 year old state and take a different course. We cannot. It is abundantly clear that we cannot.

So what is the exercise for?

And I think the answer is twofold

The first part of the answer is that it is for ourselves. The clarity of thinking that the writing of this letter brought me was a revelation. I learnt more than I expected to learn and am, I hope, the better for it emotionally.

The second part is that it is for those who come after us. My whole reason for living this part of my life in public is to try to hep one person, even only one person, from following my road. So, if that one person sees what I've written and says "That is exactly how I am feeling, or acting" then he knows that t is unlikely to lead to the right answer.

The fact that I will never meet the man who is the boy I loved, and will never feel his arms about me is unimportant, even irrelevant. The thing is that I can see, now, today, that I should have brought it to a head at the time, even though rejection, probably a little humiliation, was the likely outcome. That way I could have prevented myself from wasting so many years over what might have been, though never would have been.

Can I save one young man today from doing that?

Probably. Because he will use his intelligence and find his own strategies for solving his similar problems



Author of Queer Me! Halfway Between Flying and Crying - the true story of life for a gay boy in the Swinging Sixties in a British all male Public School
Re: A letter to my 16 year old self (March 2010)  [message #61410 is a reply to message #61395] Thu, 18 March 2010 02:53 Go to previous messageGo to next message
Macky is currently offline  Macky   United States

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Anthony,

That was superb. It says so much about you. You inspire me. I never replied to this thread. I still don't think I would know what to say to the 16 year old me. But I think I might try.

Max



Behold, how good and how pleasant it is
For brothers to dwell together in unity!
Ps 133:1 NASB
Re: A letter to your 16 year old self  [message #68460 is a reply to message #59160] Wed, 16 April 2014 18:57 Go to previous messageGo to next message
timmy   United Kingdom

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Sometimes I bring things back to the top 'just because'. This is one such time.

Do it for yourself. No need to make it public, but do it.



Author of Queer Me! Halfway Between Flying and Crying - the true story of life for a gay boy in the Swinging Sixties in a British all male Public School
Re: A letter to your 16 year old self  [message #68461 is a reply to message #68460] Wed, 16 April 2014 22:30 Go to previous messageGo to next message
kiwi is currently offline  kiwi   New Zealand

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Just to be contrary - at 14 i actually did write a letter to be read by my 40yo self, (because 40 was SO old then). Don't know whatever happened to it, it was lost somewhere along the way - hope it was destroyed.

I can't remember much of what i wrote but i do know that it was mostly a list of things that i'd be a failure if i hadn't achieved or fixed them. I hope i'm not that judgemental these days.

cheers
Re: A letter to your 16 year old self  [message #68462 is a reply to message #59160] Thu, 17 April 2014 04:55 Go to previous messageGo to next message
Smokr is currently offline  Smokr   United States

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I wouldn't even know where to begin.
It would end up thousands of words long and take days to write. I'd boil it down to...

You're going to be fine. Things work out okay.



raysstories.com
Re: A letter to your 16 year old self  [message #68463 is a reply to message #68462] Thu, 17 April 2014 06:41 Go to previous messageGo to next message
timmy   United Kingdom

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Quote:
Smokr wrote on Thu, 17 April 2014 05:55I wouldn't even know where to begin.
It would end up thousands of words long and take days to write. I'd boil it down to...

You're going to be fine. Things work out okay.

--Ah, but what advice would you give him to turn things working out ok into things being potentially wonderful?



Author of Queer Me! Halfway Between Flying and Crying - the true story of life for a gay boy in the Swinging Sixties in a British all male Public School
Re: A letter to your 16 year old self  [message #68464 is a reply to message #68463] Thu, 17 April 2014 15:55 Go to previous messageGo to next message
Camy is currently offline  Camy   United Kingdom

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What a wonderful thread!



"There are two means of refuge from the miseries of life: Music and Cats." - Albert Schweitzer

It's like Mad Max out here: guys doing guys, girls doing girls, girls turning into guys and doing girls that used to do girls and guys!
- from Alex Truelove
Re: A letter to your 16 year old self  [message #68465 is a reply to message #59160] Thu, 17 April 2014 20:24 Go to previous messageGo to next message
Marius is currently offline  Marius   United States

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I found a couple of "letters to your 16 year-old self"

One from Elton John:
http://www.lettersofnote.com/2011/01/dear-sixteen-year-old-m e.html

One from Stephen Fry:
http://www.theguardian.com/media/2009/apr/30/stephen-fry-let ter-gay-rights
Re: A letter to your 16 year old self  [message #71947 is a reply to message #59160] Fri, 07 October 2016 15:46 Go to previous messageGo to next message
timmy   United Kingdom

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Some time ago, as you can find in the thread here, I created A Letter to Myself at 16 timed to coincide, pretty much, with National Coming Out Day. The site it was on managed to corrupt the post. So I recreated it, slightly updated, for this year's event.

My challenge to you is to write your own, typed or audio, or both

Are you up for it?

[edited to correct the link to the letter]

[Updated on: Mon, 10 October 2016 07:33]




Author of Queer Me! Halfway Between Flying and Crying - the true story of life for a gay boy in the Swinging Sixties in a British all male Public School
Re: A letter to your 16 year old self  [message #71954 is a reply to message #71947] Mon, 10 October 2016 07:34 Go to previous messageGo to next message
timmy   United Kingdom

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Quote:
timmy wrote on Fri, 07 October 2016 16:46

[edited to correct the link to the letter]

--
The letter is, of course, here.



Author of Queer Me! Halfway Between Flying and Crying - the true story of life for a gay boy in the Swinging Sixties in a British all male Public School
Re: A letter to your 16 year old self  [message #72511 is a reply to message #71947] Sun, 05 February 2017 20:45 Go to previous message
Jackboy is currently offline  Jackboy   United Kingdom

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Location: North UK
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Messages: 69



What a good idea Timmy.
I'll look at it. (And myself) lol

Jack
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