Terry and Jamie – Visible

There are natural questions we wonder when we look at couples who seem suited for each other.  How did they find each other? What did they see in each other than made their love special? How did they know this love was the love that would last?

For Jamie and Terry, the road to coming out and living in the truth wasn’t easy. Terry came out to his mom first. As is often the case, she already knew. His dad didn’t embrace the news and it led to a more than ten year estrangement, which kept Terry away from not only his dad, but his siblings. Jamie came out to him mom and they, too, went through a period where they didn’t talk. It was only after she got sick that they reunited.

And both had been in relationships that were less than ideal.

Terry went through a rebellious phase that included partying and drug abuse. His cousin saw what he was up to and was worried. He reached out to Terry’s dad. For a time, Terry moved from Los Angeles to Idaho. He began cleaning up his life. He trained to become a vet tech. He traveled around the country cleaning up vet clinics. During this period, he discovered he was positive for the HIV virus. The news stunned him and he admits he gave up for a while. He began taking medication right away and was lucky to have caught it very early.

But still, he wondered, who would accept him?

He went through some rough times, but eventually moved to Texas with a boyfriend.

Terry and Jamie met through their respective boyfriends. Jamie grew up in Texas and served our country in the military. The four would often go out together. Terry and Jamie got along well as friends from the start. Conversation between them flowed easily. There was “something” there, but there were lines that they wouldn’t cross.

In the meantime, things weren’t going well in either of their relationships. Knowing his relationship was coming to an end, Terry felt broken. During the same period, Jamie’s boyfriend had literally disappeared. They hung out and supported each other during this time. Terry’s boyfriend decided to move away, so Terry invited Jamie to stay with him. Terry says during this time, Jamie saw him at his worst and gave him time to heal.

Their first “official” date was on Valentine’s Day. After that, they never looked back. They describe their relationship as one of balance, and say they are a complete match in every way. They ever stop talking, which is what they believe keeps their relationship strong: the continuous, unending conversation.

“He’s the one person who saw me when I felt invisible,” says Terry. He’d felt invisible to his family and to the world. With Jamie at his side, Terry came out for the second time, but this time it was with confidence. No hesitation or shame. He’s proud of who he is.

Last Christmas when they were out shopping, they went into a jewelry store. Jamie looked at Terry and told him to pick out a ring. They were both crying.

In March of this year, they had a Texas-style wedding at The Bryan Museum, a museum dedicated to the preservation, education and promotion of the history and art of Texas and the American West. Terry and Jamie made their own history that day, as the museum had never hosted a gay wedding. Both families were there, fully onboard and accepting, along with more than 200 of their closest friends.

They make their home in Galveston and both are active in charity work for the gay community.

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