18 years. Some would say 18 LONG years. That’s not our case.
After revealing to Tigz that I was gay and we hooked up, I knew I wanted to be his boyfriend. I broke up with the girl I was dating but Tigz was hesitant to break from his and give men a try again. Totally understandable with the way I saw his previous boyfriends treating him. I thought to myself how could they treat this amazingly sweet handsome boy like that. He found comfort in the woman that treated him like a king although he sexually was not attracted to her. That didn’t stop me.
Even while he was with his girlfriend we continued to mess around. I’d always go to his house. He’d come to mine. I pushed for him to leave his girlfriend but it was a long conflict within himself to stay with the first person to care for him genuinely in a long time or take a risk with me, someone who may potentially be another guy on the list who breaks his heart.
It took a while but I finally convinced him that I would never treat him like that. We had a foundation as best friends for about two years and I wanted to build on that. I wasn’t just some guy he met on a chat room. I was his best friend and wanted to be his best friend for life.
We didn’t define it for awhile so we didn’t have an exact date that we started dating. Halloween was coming up and I knew that was his favorite holiday. The costumes, the candy, the lively celebrating by everyone, the chance to be someone you want to be that’s deep inside you, basically the definition of Alter, alter ego. I told him let’s make Halloween official. He agreed. So 18 years ago, October 31st, Halloween 2001… we became an official couple.
Now how 18 years? Before becoming an official couple, like I said we already had the backbone of a relationship that was important. We found an incredible bond as friends. We had the same interest, same tastes in guys, same love for video games, dancing, partying, etc. Throughout our relationship we kept that foundation holding us strong.
You’d think we’d want to kill each other. Since we got together we did everything together. There was rarely a day I didn’t see him. Still to this day there is rarely a day I don’t see him. We even work together at the same company. Any day I didn’t see him I felt vulnerable and alone. I would miss him and just constantly think of him. I wasn’t me without him. When I couldn’t see him, we would be on the phone talking until we fell asleep.
Sacrifices. We’ve both made many sacrifices to stay together. Tigz was supposed to go to school for architecture. He’s a great designer and amazing with art. His school was in Northern California. I was studying in SDSU to become a computer engineer. I would ditch class just to see Tigz at work on his lunch break and bring him food. We sacrificed what was at the time our goals to be with each other. He decided to not go to school to be with me. I left school to be with him. Some people would say that wasn’t smart, but what was not smart for us was to loose what we had. We’d figure out eventually what we’d do in life but our new goal was to do it together.
Our mission to stay with each other didn’t come without hardships. As we were learning each other, and there is always something new to learn, we’ve had our ups and downs.
It’s normal to have fights and boy did we fight. It’s normal to have fights but we also did have our abnormal fights. Screaming, threats to kill ourselves, cops paying a visit. It wasn’t always pretty. Although most people through the social media world perceived us as the perfect couple, we’ve had our ups, our very high ups, but also our downs and sad very low downs. But we prevailed through it. We didn’t let those downs define what we wanted our relationship to become. At the end of every fight was always us coming together closer.
We’ve had so many more ups and those ups were euphoric. We knew that our happiness when we were together outweighed those instances that were not so fun and that became our focus. Keep it fun, keep it live, keep the things that brought joy to us. Kill the shit we hated about each other. Make changes. Alter your history for the good.
Coming from not much money we did our best to make everything feel like an adventure. We saw what we can, we did what we can. Looking back on everything I am so happy with everything that we did together. So many happy fun memories that still warm my heart.
Finally finding stable jobs we move in together. Man that was one of the best days of my life. Getting our own place. Knowing I wouldn’t have to be alone ever again. We moved in to the heart of Hillcrest, the gay part of San Diego. It’s where our life really started to mature and take form into what it has become today.
We grew up. We became active in our gay community, dance community, and rave community together. We built a massive social network within those communities that became our family for life. Being gay you choose your family when your real family is not there in your support. Support from yoyr family became another key factor in our relationship. They made us feel like we were a part of something. When Tigz and I felt alone with our problems we knew there was something bigger to focus on that was outside of ourselves. You need that to give more purpose to your own relationship.
Years would go by and we did everything together. Tried new things. Went to new events. Tried new food for the first time. Tried 3somes, 4 some, orgies with 7 people. Traveled. Went to many prides, many raves, many festivals. Clubbed. Joined a few dance teams. Perused a career in Hollywood as dancers. Eventually ended up working for a company together. All of our adventures we did together and grew stronger. Keeping everything exciting, at home or out in the world.
This all leading to today. Still together everyday through this pandemic. All of the knowledge we’ve built about each other got us through figuring how to be stuck with each other at home, 24/7 for over two months. We made it. We are strong.
There was not a day I can recall that I didn’t say ‘I love you’ to him. I really do. I look at him and I see someone that I want to take care of for the rest of my life. With everything that we went through, there are some things I would have changed. I used to have anger problems, probably came from my dad, but I’ve learned and I am still learning to not become that rageful person anymore. Otherwise what we went through made us the couple you see today. 18 years in the making. 18 years that didn’t feel like 18 years. 18 years of life experiences that I wanted to have with my best friend. My life partner. Although we have been engaged for awhile, soon… my husband. I LOVE YOU BAH BAH.
So how do you keep a relationship to last this long? I am not a relationship counselor and can’t give you professional advice. What I can say from my experience is to find your best friend. The one you want to live life together. Understand what I just said. Not just live together. LIVE ‘LIFE’ TOGETHER. Do the things that make you happy together. While you do it, understand each other. Communicate. Learn. Then live life, experience new things, keep the experiences you loved with one another alive with that understanding… together.
We will reach 19 years of love on October 31st, 2020.