This may seem like a cocky statement from my part, but the fact that I was brilliant was undeniable. Who am I kidding? I am. I am Mark, I am 25 and if you think I am too full of myself that is because I have been denied what was rightfully mine: the opportunity to prove myself. All I ever wanted was a fair chance like everybody else, but I never thought I will be discriminated based on such a petty thing such as sexual orientation.
I have started my professional career about 6 years ago, after a relatively short time as an amateur during which I have destroyed my opponents. My coach said I am a natural and that I was wasting my potential fighting with unworthy opponents. I was promoted to professionals and I knew that my time had come. I started lightly, facing adversaries that seemed to underestimate me. Which degenerated in bad outcomes for them. Soon, I became kind of famous on a local plan and the future seemed pretty bright.
One thing that I had been hiding from my colleagues was the fact that I was gay. I was involved in a gay relationship for over two and a half years and there were many fights when my boyfriend was present in the crowd, supporting me. But he was always unsatisfied by the fact that I preferred keeping our relation secret. It just seemed awkward for me to come out about my sexuality in a macho entourage. I don’t know if it was just me, being ashamed of who I was, or because, in my subconscious, I was aware of the fact that I was jeopardizing my career.
But Garry and I soon started to fight over this thing and I can now relate to his point of view. He wanted our relation to be public. He was tired of hiding and I must say that I was starting to agree with him.
I knew that my star was raising so I figured that I had nothing to lose by coming out about my sexuality so, one day, I just gathered my crew and told them the truth. What happened next deeply disappointed me. I haven’t received one single encouraging thought, not one congratulation for my courage. They just stared at me in disbelief like I was some weird. But this was not the only change that occurred after my sincere statement. Soon, I noticed that my colleagues began to avoid me in some way or another and they seemed to became irritated during the sparring time, whenever I proved myself against them. I could feel the tension rising, especially since I noticed that I was receiving less and less fighting opportunities. I could feel something was a bit awkward, like an unspoken truth floating in the air, which got me nervous and mad as the time passed.
It all went to a halt when, during a training session, I became overzealous and added a bit more power when I kicked my sparring partner. “Fucking queer” were his last words before I bled his nose. I hit him with so much hate, like I wanted to prove him that the little shit had nothing on me. I wanted to show him that a “queer” could kick his pathetic ass and he could do nothing about it. My coach told me I was suspended and that I won’t be able to fight for that season. As a punishment, he said. But we all knew that it was just an excuse to remove me from the competitive scene. It’s been one year since that happening and I got left behind somehow. I have been sued for assault and I am now suspended indefinitely.
Even if no one has the courage to say it, my chances have been destroyed by my sexual orientation. You want to talk about justice? There is none. People are mean and afraid of everything different from them. I won’t stop fighting for my right of being who I was destined to be, but I will never let go of who I really am. The world will have to deal with me.