Michele, Student, Oderzo, Italy

photo by Kevin Truong
photo by Kevin Truong
photo by Kevin Truong
photo by Kevin Truong
photo by Kevin Truong
photo by Kevin Truong
photo by Kevin Truong
photo by Kevin Truong
photo by Kevin Truong
photo by Kevin Truong
Michele, in his own words: “Being homosexual means self-confidence and bravery.

We’re not superheroes or flawless; what I’m trying to say is that thanks to our personal and wearying stories, we can truly appreciate the value of freedom, respect and the priority of happiness.

It is a hard climb, but I wouldn’t change my nature for any reason in the world, because the vibe, the warmth and the magic you get by loving your mate is something inexplicable, that goes beyond people’s judgements.

At the age of 17 I can’t talk about veritable challenges and successes, I have all my life in front of me. As my biggest successes I would say defining who I am and who I want to become and finding the fierceness to face society.

Everyone at school took the announcement easily, more than I’ve expected, I guess because it was rather evident. The hardest part of my coming out story deals with my parents. One night, this fall, I came back home with a new bright hair colour: I was very glad about it, it aired the emotional equilibrium I finally reached, but my parents didn’t feel the same. As soon as I passed through the door my dad said: “Run to the bathroom. I’m shaving that mess off your head”.

It may sound melodramatic, but this was the straw that broke the camel’s back: it was the nth time I had to conform to people’s churchy ethic, the nth time I felt forced to conceal. I wanted them to be informed about my homosexuality and understand that their every trial would never be able to change that, because it surpasses the simple appearance.

Since then our relationship hasn’t improved: I knew it would go this way; I only wanted to be honest with them (but yeah, at the bottom of my heart I always hoped that the love for a son could beat this disagreement).

Here in Oderzo there isn’t a gay community in the real meaning of the word: most commonly you find small firmly defined groups that are not very keen on hanging out with new guys (it sounds pretty elite).

Furthermore there are boys in the closet, sometimes homophobic on the outside, that hide themselves behind body pictures on Grindr, looking for sex and then avoiding one another when walking down the street.

The lack of gay places, beyond the cultural background, has probably worsened the situation, but at the end of the day this feeling of individuality doesn’t seem to bother many people.

“You can’t be tamed”, that’s what I’d love to say to my younger self. As a human being you’re free to establish what the best is for you, in every perspective of your life, whether it is professional or sentimental.”

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