Mark Dio and Sam first met in 2009.
“(We met) through an online dating site,” Dio smiled. “We started chatting on this gay dating social networking site. I saw him there and I thought he was pretty cute – except for the fake blonde hair. I thought he was some guy from ‘Muro-Ami’ with that hair. (But I still) found him interesting, so I thought of some lame excuse to meet up with him in person. I asked him if he has some installers for a particular photo editing software. He said he did, so I went over to his place right away.”
In hindsight, “I don’t know why he even let me come over. The only photo I had in my profile then was that of a dog!” Dio laughed.
Sam admitted that from the first moment he saw Dio, he felt something special. This is even if, for Dio, he only knew for sure that he was in love with Sam “after a year or so. The feeling didn’t come to me right away. Both of us had boyfriends when we started dating, so you have to understand why I didn’t call it love on day one. I think I fell in love with him when I saw how much he was willing to sacrifice for me. I haven’t seen someone give me so much time and attention. Me – a person he barely even knows – just because he says he loves me. Every day, I hear people say ‘I love you’, and then they break up after a few months or weeks; but he was different. I really felt him. It was only after a year or so, when I finally said to myself that I really am in love with him.”
What they have is not always challenge-free.
For Dio, a challenge, particularly in the beginning, was his parents. “They thought he was some guy who’s just ‘boyfriending’ me for money. It was kind of awkward, really, because Sam spends a lot more for me. I understand my parents’ sentiments though. They grew up in a time when people thought less about gay people.”
For Sam, it’s their different ways of looking at PDA. “Dio is shameless,” Sam smiled. “He holds hands with me wherever he wants: in the mall, in the jeepney… He’s pretty confident about holding hands and people always stare; sometimes they even whisper at each other looking at us. I learned not to mind them. The one thing I can’t give him in public, though, is a kiss. He never stops asking me for one peck; I still haven’t given him one in public.”
But both are appreciative of what they have.
“(In this relationship), we don’t just look at each other; we look in the same direction,” Sam said.
Both said that “we always say to each other: ‘We never know what tomorrow will bring.’ So we intend to stay true to each other while we’re still together. That’s what we have always done.”
And it is this happiness being with each other that is their strong bond.
“We’re always happy. I think that’s the best part. I just enjoy being with him so much. I feel safe and secured when I’m with him. I’m happy with him,” Dio ended.