Reputation Protecting: What Do You Do When “That Guy” Shows Up?
I just heard that someone with a bad reputation is showing up. He hasn’t even got here yet and people are already shunning me because I am roped together with him. Apparently he is a very predetorial kind of man who does things in prison that make all of us gays look bad. Supposedly.
Guys he are sexually aggressive tend to get bad reps very quickly among inmates and that usually derives from their buddies seeing them with a very flamboyant homo-sexual and razzing them about being seen with him. Guys like the one I’m talking about have no problem asking anyone he finds attractive to engage sexually, especially the younger looking ones. This brings a lot of heat and unwanted attention to guys like me both among inmates and staff.
So, like I said, he hasn’t even gotten here yet, just the mention of his name has sparked ostracizing here. So here is what I am going to do. I am going to do what I always do in these situations. I am going to hold my standard and I am going to do my best to mentor him and be his friend without compromising my personal values and retarding my advancement towards my goals.
Here is what I think: NO ONE will come between my goals and what I want to do. I am fighting for equality and the right to exist as a gay man. Most people feel this on a light scale a time or two in their lives. But in here, it’s daily. And it’s confusing because when they aren’t heckling us or telling us how abominable we are or making our lives miserable they are asking us to have sex with them, usually in the same damned breath.
Be prepared when reputation ruins come around. Be the example because when you are seen side by side you will not be seen as the same entity. You will be a stark contrast to their behavior if your reputation has been established as the higher moral value. I look at this as an opportunity to shine. Yeah, this guy is aggressive, but I am not. We will not be roped together when they see us side by side and just because he is all crazy doesn’t mean that I have to be. Until he proves himself as someone who I cannot be around because he is compromising my goals, I see no reason to ostracize him myself. He will get enough of that from others. I will be his friend. I will show him that happiness can come from within. He may not learn anything, but he will certainly see me doing it, first hand.
Jesus sat with sinners and commanded that we love our brethren like we love ourselves. He loved them too…I should as well. I am a sinful man and will not die sinless…it’s just the way it is. But I can certainly try to mimic what my Father does. My Father loves me, my Father wants me to love others…and that is exactly what I plan to do. God has my best interest at hand and I will do what I can to stay on track for His will. His will is that none shall be lost and what kind of man would I be to receive a second and third and fourth chance in life and not ever give someone I have never met even one chance based on what everyone else has said…hogwash…
I will not be guided by those given to rumors. I have been guilty of that many times in life and have not always kept my peace when I should have, alerting others to the misguided past of someone else…but today, I can change that and I intend to do just that.
Jeff Utnage 823469
Just as a heads up, I cannot receive mail from other inmates….