Don't Give Up Hope - Brian + Rob

Brian and Rob are Military servicemen living in Saratoga Springs, UT. They have full time jobs in banking and teaching respectively, and serve their country and community in their spare time. About a month and a half after Brian and Rob had started dating, Rob moved to Arizona to finish a Masters program. Brian traveled down as often as he could and their relationship grew from their. The loved going on dates in Arizona where they didn’t have to worry about running into people that they knew.

For Brian, being an adult and coming out as gay, knowing his whole life that there was a part of him that was different was extremely challenging. Towards the end of his second marriage Brian was struggling with who he was.

“Not wanting to go through the embarrassment of coming out as gay, but knowing it was there. It was a tough couple of years.“

When Rob came out, he thought that he was gonna lose all of his friends. He had one friends in particular that he had written off as someone who would either make fun of him or just leave his life completely. He was surprised when he received nothing but love.

There was someone that Brian worked very closely with in the Military he didn’t want to tell so he had a friend tell him. Brian got a phone call from his co-worker who was upset that he didn’t tell him in person.

“He cried with me, over the phone. And nothing but love since.”

Brian believes that there is something about the Military that a lot of people don’t understand. He says that in the Military everyone is the same.

“We are all Airmen, Soldiers, Sailors, and Marines. So a person of color, or ethnicity, even two gay men, all have the same opportunities.”

He says, that anyone who stands in the way of that opportunity or does anything less than professional, is dealt with.

“It’s zero tolerance.”

Rob want LGBTQ+ youth to live their most authentic life.

“It’s your life, don’t live your life for others.”

Doing that can be scary and daunting. But in the long run, Rob knows that there is a net gain of positivity and love.

Brian says,

“We have an amazing life! We’ve been able to do so much over the past three years.”

At home, Brian and Rob have a big jar filled with all of the tickets from everything they have done together. Every one of those tickets is a great memory of the life they get to live and their overflowing jar!

Brian wants LGBTQ+ youth to never give up hope. He says,

“There are people out there that you don’t know yet that will love you in a way you could never imagine. Don’t give up hope!”

Benjamin Dunford