Lessons on Love from a Divorced Gay Man

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Two divorces and brutal family rejection gave David Yerks insight into what true love is all about.

all-you-need-is-loveI am a big believer in equality in weddings and marriages. I believe it because I have lived it. Even if, at one time, it may not have been by choice—kind of. Please read on; I know I am not alone in this.

I grew up in the typical, albeit dysfunctional, family. My parents were married for over 50 years—longer than I thought they should have been married. When I was 8, the family split, but came back together within a year’s time. Back then, you had to prove adultery or abuse before you could get a divorce. My mother thought of it, but as she told us before she went back to my father, who would want a woman with two small children? That was the thinking in the ’60s.

As many children hear, we were told no matter what, we would always be loved. I tested that theory when I was 19. That is when I came out to my parents (in the heat of an argument because I had stayed out all night). During my mothers hysteria, she told me I was no longer her son and to get out.

This is when my father and I became closer. I never thought there was any love loss between us. I was so wrong. For three months he worked on getting us all back together. Until my mother found party invitations for a “union” between the man I was seeing and myself. I got kicked out again.

That “union” never happened. When I told him what happened, he told me he was seeing someone else. What a heartache. That hurt more than being kicked out of the house—twice !

I decided that maybe I should conform to society, so I started dating a girl and got married. I had never been with a woman until my wedding night. We stayed married for 22 months. As much as I thought I loved her, I had as much anger because of who knows what? She left me, but I didn’t feel any hurt. In fact, I couldn’t blame her. A few years later, I tried marriage again.

On our second date, I told her I also liked men. She told me I couldn’t be gay and that I probably never met the right woman. We lived together for a year, married for about 6 years. She thought she was that special woman until I told her I was having an affair. She asked me who is she, to which I replied it was a man.

Since then, I have never dated a woman and started living my life, not a lie. I know how lies can hurt. I am currently living with the greatest man I have ever known. More than 17 years now.

So when clients talk about how marriage should be between a man and a woman, I tell a much abbreviated form of my story. I just say I have lived in both worlds. I have been given love and have given love. I have also hurt and been hurt. Sex is about enjoying each other. It is all the same. We are all the same in more ways than most want to admit.

Thank you for reading my life.

David Yerks is a hair stylist and makeup artist living in Palm Springs, Calif. Reach him on Twitter @DavidYerks.

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Photo: Kate’s Captures Photography

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