Did Freddy Krueger Help Me Realize I’m Gay?
Why we “Complain” and what we can learn from it
I want to live out for the moment
I want to live out for the day
But my heart is on fire
And I’m waiting in line
So I only complain
*Lyrics from “Complain” by Gregory Douglass
Gregory Douglass, Category: Artist, Albums: Live from the Chapel, My Hero, The Enemy, Lucid, Battler, Up & Away…
I use to have a recurring nightmare about Freddy Krueger when I was young. My cousin Tony Bob somehow got his hands on a copy of Nightmare on Elm Street 3: Dream Warriors, even though we were both way too young to be watching horror movies.
Tony Bob and I concocted a plan for him to sleep over one night so we could watch it while my mom was at choir practice. The plan worked like a charm. We popped Freddy Krueger into the VRC as soon as mom’s car disappeared from the driveway, and away we watched. I had never seen anything like it before. It was awesome. It was terrifying. I was traumatized.
I was so traumatized that I proceeded to become my own “dream warrior” with Freddy Kruger for the next two years. Night after night Freddy would chase after me in my dreams until I scared myself awake. I even tried beating the shit out of him with a shovel one night, but he wouldn’t quit — nothing would kill him dead.
Finally, one night, Freddy chased me into a bright white room with no windows or doors except for the doorway I ran through. The room looked like a catering kitchen — minimalistic and clean, with sleek stainless steel industrial appliances. It was almost peaceful and serene, but Freddy had me trapped in there — and we both knew it.
He smiled with a deviant grin from the doorway and began to creep closer. I stood there frozen as he slowly drew himself nearer. As he approached me, he reached around and grabbed me by the waist with his “good” hand to pull me even closer.
I had to think fast, so I closed my eyes, leaned in — and kissed him. Yeah. And he kissed me back.
I suppose I thought it would surprise and hopefully distract him. It was my survival instincts, and it seemed to have worked. I opened my eyes and couldn’t believe what happened next. Freddy Krueger had transformed into this totally handsome dude. It was as if kissing him broke the spell — like some sort of gay Sleeping Beauty fairytale.
So, did Freddy Krueger help me realize I’m gay? Yes, I think so.
It would be another few years before I could fully process things, but I believe that my sexuality was the greatest fear I had at the time. My attraction to other boys was always chasing me — and I was always running from it, trying to kill it dead — but it just wouldn’t quit. It was relentless, just like Freddy Krueger was in my nightmares.
So I finally faced the monster — or rather, kissed the monster. And that began my journey toward self-acceptance.
I never had recurring nightmares about Freddy Krueger again after that. Today, I’m a proud gay man with a loving husband. I wouldn’t have it any other way, even with all the hate and intolerance that still exists in our fearful world.
I still have plenty of problems and plenty of fears though, and I complain about things more than I’d care to admit. I’ve been really hard on myself about that over the years. No one wants to have a “bad attitude” about things, but I realize now that when I’m complaining about my problems it’s usually a good indicator that there’s still work to be done.
Complaining about something can be an opportunity to learn about accepting what is so that you can change what needs to be changed.
Facing the fear-monster of my recurring nightmares helped me become more accepting of myself and eventually make changes in the right direction for a happier future. There’s just as much power in the daily recurrence of complaining that can lead to profound insights about acceptance and change if we’re willing to take a closer look.
What are you mostly complaining about right now? Lacking enough money? Try accepting where you’re at financially and start making actionable changes in the direction of making more money. Always feeling stressed or burned out? Try accepting where you’re at emotionally and start making actionable changes in the right direction of better health. Feeling stuck and overwhelmed with everything? Try accepting where you’re at mentally and start making actionable changes in the right direction of clarity and simplification.
Life is short. Don’t be the monster of your own story.
In closing, “Complain” is a song I wrote for my studio album My Hero, The Enemy. I just released a live version of that album called Live from the Chapel that was recorded and filmed live at The Chapel in San Francisco. I wrote this song about learning to accept what is in order to make real change… Take a listen to the original version of the song or live version of the song if your curious.
Yours in music & creative wellness,
PS. I’ve got a whole riot of recorded music, videos, and articles to inspire you at GregoryDouglass.com.
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