01614: A Different Kind of ASA Family

All human relationships are complex - the more significant they are, the more complicated they tend to be. This is not a bad thing in itself. It's just a natural "consequence" to things that are of significant emotional value. The greater the emotional investment, the greater the impact on our lives whether positively or negatively.

2012 was certainly a year for complications for me. The various relationship changes that Tobie and I went through in terms of our special friendship with Prince certainly sent my emotions into an industrial-sized spin-cycle dryer or something a number of times. But the complex emotions that the three of us feel for one another just speak of the importance we put in our relationship, even just as friends, and thus a lot of the back-and-forth on so many different things.

With the coming of July, I'm reminded that it has been almost a year since the three of us broke up. Since then we went through a complex single period before Tobie and I finally got back together in November and eventually tried to figure out how to deal with Prince. We went through a number of different models and strategies in a somewhat trial-and-error manner that was almost as brutal as some of our arguments when we were still together. But in the end we've emerged as friends and I think that we've all grown significantly because of the experience.

No, we're not in a romantic relationship together - that's one model that may not have worked out ideally for the three of us at all. But we are all certainly more than just friends and thus a different kind of family unit all together. But there's no denying that we are like family in many ways given the care and concern that we still feel for one another. We're not that same "ASA Family" that we used to be when we tried to define that particular relationship - but we are something special still. And when we leave all the drama behind, we do have a lot of fun together and make for really great friends.

And this is probably one of the things that I love about the ever-changing nature of LGBT culture. Because we live outside the "traditional" relationship framework of marriage between a man and a woman and all that jazz, we're forced to evaluate all this social institutions and determine for ourselves a model that works for us.

And thus the reason why new types of relationships like ours come to be - or something like that. We get to forge new trails and define new types of friendships and intimate relationships that work for our particular situations. The LGBT experience as a whole is less about fitting into pre-established roles and instead creating identities of our own and go from there.

I love Tobie - there's no doubt about that. And we both feel that Prince is somewhat part of an extended "family" of sorts that we have. And we also have unique friendships with key people like our "anak" Nico and good friends PJ and Jhamz. And these are all relationships that Tobie and I invest in significantly in order to continue to strengthen these bonds and help these important friends do better in life. And that's never a bad thing.