Today marks the two-year anniversary since I created this account.
My origins for coming here were a result from weeks and months of stalking @TheHighGay, who back then was known as Central Gay. I never followed him on my personal account, but the anonymity element intrigued me. After I came out on March 17th of that year, I began to crave friendships with guys I could relate to. Guys who could understand first-hand the experiences I had so far in my life and who, if I was lucky, I could befriend.
And so on the afternoon of April 6th, I made this account.
My number of followers did not escalate quickly by any means. Two of my initial interactions with two anons turned into one of the most combative relationships with another person I’ve ever had in my life (see my post on self-acceptance for the full story). Other friendships I tried to cultivate fell on deaf ears, perhaps because I didn’t appear interesting enough, or attractive enough, or a multitude of other reasons.
But not long after, more fruitful relationships began forming, one of those first ones being with a gay teen from fabulous Las Vegas, @kingUndesirable. He and I immediately bonded over music, with the likes of Paramore and Nicki Minaj being early favorites. We’d exchange song lyric quotes constantly. We spent one afternoon quoting Mean Girls in a series of 100 tweets. We eventually turned the friendship over to texting, where I came to call him my little brother and still talk to him on occasion.
A similar relationship with yet another gay teen from Georgia, @eclectic_gay, yielded similar results. He, much wiser than many people his age, struck me as an old soul trapped in the body of a 17-year old, and there’s plenty of admirable qualities I find in him. Back when I used Kik, we exchanged some of the deepest conversations I’ve had. In that same vein, we also discussed Pokemon. He landed himself a boyfriend earlier this year, and I cannot be happier for him and hope I eventually get to meet him someday.
Perhaps one of the single most meaningful connections I’ve made happened that summer in the form of a then-19-year old from Tennessee. We immediately bonded over Pokemon, exchanged DMs, Kiks, and eventually entered texting, and as is one of my tendencies in various cases, I ended up falling for him. Was it one of my better decisions? Definitely not, as I ended up missing out on a guy who was interested in me in real-life later that year. That, and as I’ve never been in a relationship before, I didn’t fully consider how much I could make a long-distance relationship of that nature realistically work for me. Several months later, we ended up discussing it, and for a while, the crash and disappointment was horrible. But gradually, largely through music (at the time, ‘What Are You Waiting For?’ by Paradise Fears truly helped push me through it), I bounced back, and we’ve continued to be really good friends ever since. He is one of the few people in my life where I have the genuine feeling that we’ll be friends for basically forever, and I am perfectly okay with that.
Yet another truly significant relationship came to me this past summer, courtesy of a fellow gay in high school who lived in the same city I used to, @michigxn_gay, just 2.5 miles from my house. We bonded quickly, and in a matter of weeks, he ended up falling for me, which was enormously flattering as I’ve never in my life had someone care so deeply about me and how I was feeling. It made me ridiculously happy, even if I didn’t directly mention it. It was extremely touching. My hope of getting to know him in person has mostly been dashed, as his dad considers me to be a pedophile, and I definitely have no intention of putting myself in any position to go to jail. Our relationship, like nearly every other in existence, has had its fair share of rough patches. Neither of us are perfect, but we’ve consistently overcome a lot of obstacles and have continued to remain friends, and I take enormous pride in being able to say that we can work through our issues rather than give up altogether, which is an extremely prevalent thing in our generation today. Like many others, he is one person I’m not giving up on, and I have every intention of being friends with him until I kick the bucket.
I’ve managed to connect with plenty other wonderful people as well, one of them being with my friend Ian, an art student at MTSU. The number of fantastic conversations I’ve had with him via text and FaceTime are far too many to count, and I’m excited beyond words to pay him a visit this summer, which wouldn’t have happened had it not been for this account. The same can be said for @UAFabGay, who I visited last year in June and also wouldn’t have met had I not made this account.
This account has connected me with incredibly supportive people like @Hoosier_Gay, where our entire relationship is based off of us supporting one another and boosting each other up. I can’t put into words how much having people like him in my life means to me, and I know for a fact that people like him truly deserve to have every ounce of happiness in the world. The amount of caring he has for me is insane, and flattering, and I cannot wait to finally meet him sometime this summer.
Having this account has even gotten me out of tough situations. In December of 2014, my plans to return home after the fall semester were looking grim, up until @MotorCityGay offered to drive me back home, which for him was a 2 hour drive from Detroit to Kalamazoo, an hour back to my house, and then another 2 or so hours back to Detroit. I can’t think of a lot of people who are just willing to do that out of nowhere.
This account has made me realize there are plenty of other people exactly like me who aren’t the most confident they could be or even should be. It has made me gain an even deeper understanding of the LGBT community, of how many different shades and identities there are, and how no two gay guys are exactly the same.
My goal for making this account was to make more friends, and to talk to people I could relate to. And I’ve been able to accomplish that. The majority of numbers saved in my phone and snapchat have been people from Twitter. For one of the first times in my life, having this account has made me feel like I have friends, and people who support me, which does not go against the friends I have offline at all, but I firmly believe having too many friends is never a bad thing.
I’ve been able to positively impact other people’s lives. I’ve given the gifts of advice, and friendship, and gift cards, and custom-made herb garden pots, and pizza, and so much more, and I’ve been lucky to have some of that same love returned to me. I even saved someone from committing suicide, which I consider to be the best thing I have ever done for someone else, all because of this account. I’ve been able to give love and support to people who desperately need it, and learn in the process that I’m not quite as alone as I used to think. It has made me believe that I can eventually find love, somewhere, somehow. Over half of the numbers in my phone are people from Twitter. The group chats that have happened, the conversations, they have all meant a lot to me, as corny as that sounds.
But the biggest thing having this account has done for me is the profound impact its had on me as a person. I feel like a significantly better person since I made this account. Granted, I have my flaws still. There’s no denying that. I’m still human. But making this account has been one of the best decisions I’ve made in my life. It’s taught me more about the person I am, and want to be, and should be, and especially shouldn’t be. It’s given me plenty of insight into the other types of people out there, the good and the bad. It’s given me the opportunity to boost other people up who truly need it, and at the end of the day, I really can’t ask for much more than that.
For better or worse, I am beyond grateful for every single connection I’ve made, and every single person I’ve talked to, and some of the most crazy, bizarre, interesting, and beautiful memories that I never knew were possible to have. I may not be the most popular account out there, and that’s perfectly fine. It still doesn’t take away from what I’ve been able to experience, and from the people I’ve been able to meet through it, and it will constantly push me to better myself.
There’s no telling how long the ride will last. I feel like eventually, things will change, and I’ll have to lay the adventure to rest. I’m determined to ride it out for as long as possible in the meantime.
I never saw it coming. And I’ll never be the same.