Carlito Felipez, a wealthy 22-year-old male of Spanish descent, has lived his teenage life in the urban areas of Madrid City well before he graduated High School in Schiller International School in Barcelona. He admits to being a homosexual, proof of which is his previous short-term relationship with a male businessman who is about twenty years older than him. Belonging to a wealthy family with four sisters, he says he was strongly influenced by the activities of his siblings.
As he admits, corporate background of his family in the fashion industry and weak disposition in life, brought about by the easy and prosperous life he grew up with, led him to his sexual preference today. I find it amusing and informative to know a person like Carlito. Despite our obvious differences, we have managed to get along well with that brief encounter. He says life has been quite easy for him, being endowed with plentiful resources where only a few can manage to have. On the other hand, my life has been quite different.
In the past years, I have jumped from one job to another, from being a school bus driver to a hairdresser, literally scouring Kentucky for the available job in town. Being of Spanish-descent meant we have different national cultures especially in terms of the way in which we handle our lives to ourselves. Among his peers, it is no secret that, although he has a strong Christian background largely because of the religious beliefs of his family, Carlito eventually gave-in to what his innermost feelings tell him.
In America, there is the widespread belief that we are a liberated country free from the dictates of those who mandate our lives. In Spain, however, Carlito admits that he has had quite a rough time trying to press unto the minds of those closest to him that he desires the liberty of fully devoting himself to his sexual preference. We certainly have differing qualities in terms of our physical composition and I must agree it contributes a lot to our definition of who we are, especially in terms of culture. He says he has lived a complicated life, owing some of which to his physical appearance.
He admits that his daily routine includes wearing clothes that very much reveals his sexual preference which, in the teenage years of his life, complicated his relationship with his parents and grandparents. Being a member of a large family, he reveals that his ‘crusade’, so to speak, towards making his family understand who he really is has been a bumpy ride. I live with my daughter in a small room and I am divorced. This makes life quite difficult for me and my daughter as we both have to tackle and live the day with only a few resources in hand.
I thought life could not get any harder than this and that I have suffered far enough than anybody in the world could have experienced. I realized only a part of this is true, the part where I have struggled in the past. I realized that somewhere in the world other individuals are struggling as well only that their struggles may be far different from I’ve had and what I am having now. Carlito is a living evidence to this, telling his tale straight from the heart and reaching out towards my sanity as if telling me that, even though we may be different, we may still experience certain similarities in our lives.
Struggles in life are part of our existence. Interviewing Carlito made me realize a lot as it also taught me certain lessons in life which I can make the most out of. People are different and it is a fact, one which we certainly cannot deny even in the face of denial. We are different individuals, yes, but it does not mean that one experiences more or less struggles in life than the other. And I must agree, we all live our own individual tales but nevertheless struggles are struggles no matter what they are or whom they’re from—and they make life more sensible and worth living.