Sam, Writer and Painter, Portland, Ore.

photo by Kevin Truong
photo by Kevin Truong
photo by Kevin Truong
photo by Kevin Truong
photo by Kevin Truong
photo by Kevin Truong

Sam, in his own words:“When I was fifteen I moved far from the place where I spent most of my childhood, and naturally I became depressed. I spent a lot of time on the computer, writing, talking to the friends I left behind, pirating music, trying to make new friends in town, and watching porn. My family thought my depression was directly caused by an obsession with technology, and with some snooping they found links to porn sites.

I wasn’t bothered much by being forced out of the closet to my family so suddenly (seeing how I was out to everyone else), but I was traumatized with the thought of my family having seen gay porn that I had seen, fantasized over, jerked off to.

My family at first was in disbelief of my homosexuality; they thought that it was just an angst-ridden teenage phase. It hurt that they all had their baseless assumptions of what being a homosexual meant.

What bothers me more though is the growing process of a queer. The rejection, the sneering, the pain… And all from within our own community, the brothers and sisters that are supposed to know similar pains and hold your hand, and all based off assumptions still.

I’ve been told what it means to be a man, what it means to be queer, what it means to be an Asian homo, what it means to have a partner that is older… And you know what? Pretty much everyone was wrong.”

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