Last week, I wrote about my life in high school and I feel so lucky that my BFF, Dave, was also gay when we were in high school. We came out to each other our junior year but probably knew about each other, way before we can even admit to ourselves.
When we were in our senior year, Dave dated Will, who was an incredibly attractive tall fit white guy in his 20’s. Dave shared with me all the great things about being a relationship and how happy he was with Will. I, as a BFF, felt happy for Dave but little bit jealous. I too, selfishly, wanted a boyfriend of my own. Unfortunately, Will broke up with Dave and I, as a BFF, had the responsibility of supporting Dave.
I received a strange call from Will one day and first I thought he was going to ask me how Dave was doing. Instead, Will asked me out on a date. Honestly, the first emotion was excitement. But I was torn, so I told him I needed to think about it. I did not mention it to Dave but I talked to other friends for advice. Everyone discouraged me and said I would be hurting Dave’s feelings and it would ruin our friendship. I was still ambivalent and there was a big part of me wanted to be with Will. I finally talked to Dave about it and he told me he would be ok with it.
Will and I spent many nights at his place, watching movies. One of his favorite movies is “To Wong Foo, Thanks for Everything -Julie Newmar“.
He started to send me sweet romantic cards almost weekly basis and all of the card started with.. “To Wong Foo…” I kept these cards and still have them to this day. One card reads: “I’m glad we met. Sometimes life’s full of the happiest surprises.” Another card: “Face it. You want me.” These incredible sweet gestures gave me confidence that I made a good decision despite my best friend’s feelings. However, I could not share my joy with my best friend like he did we me when he was dating Will. I was forced to share when Dave found a condom rapper in my car, which he knew I was with Will the night before. Awkward!!
After few months of “To Wong Foo” sweet cards, Will and I both moved away then lost touch completely. We never even talked about ending our relationship, making the closure very difficult for me. It made it more difficult because I could not talk about it with Dave. When I finally talked to Dave, he did admit that it bothered him a lot. But Dave did not say anything because he just wanted me to be happy.
The truth was, I was happy. But now I wonder if I have done the same thing if it was other way around. Would I have given up my own happiness for my best friend? Would I also give him advice after my own negative experience of being in a relationship with the same guy? Would I allow my friend to experience on his own to make a decision for himself?
In gay culture, it seems everyone has dated each other’s ex at one point. One of my favorite TV shows is L Word on Showtime. One character, Alice, created “the chart” which displays names of lesbians in a big social circle in West Hollywood and names are connected by lines representing some level of romantic or sexual relationships. If I create a chart of my own, it would be a gigantic web.
It has been almost 20 year since high school. Dave and I still keep in touch. In fact, we had dinner last month. Bromance definitely last longer than romance and we stay true to power of BFF, best friends forever.
To Dave…. Thanks for everything. -Wong Foo