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UPDATE: After years of abuse for being gay in El Salvador, Juan finds bliss in America

(Editor’s note: On Thursday, Nov. 3, on SDGLN, Juan told in his own words his horrifying story of abuse, rape and torture for being gay in his homeland of El Salvador and his ordeal of fleeing to America, where his own relatives turned against him, leaving him homeless and desperate. Juan, whose name was changed to ensure his confidentiality and to protect family members in El Salvador, wanted to update his story since he made that speech last year in San Diego.)

SAN FRANCISCO – Juan is safe and sound and loving his new life in the Bay Area.

About seven months ago, Juan left his “safe house” with the lesbian couple from San Francisco who opened up their home to him.

“For now, I’m living with one roommate. I left Kim and Susan’s house in March of this year, because I wanted to start an independent life, you know. They have done a lot for me; now is time to do it,” Juan said.

Things have taken a remarkable turn for the better for Juan, who is trying to put behind him the horrors of life as a gay man living in a homophobic country like El Salvador, where he endured countless incidents of bullying, abuse, rape and even torture.

“Reading it [my story] again makes me feel a little bit sad,” Juan said, “but hopefully this would help somebody in my same conditions or people in El Salvador.”

Juan is rebuilding his life and his career in Northern California.

“I have a job in very good company, re-starting my career here in the U.S,” he said. “I just want to make contributions to this country and its society, which gave asylum to be safe.

“I forgot to say, since I got my asylum, in July 2011, I was able to apply for being a permanent resident and I did it in November; hopefully I will get it by January 2012.”

Juan’s focused on work, but he’s eager to build a social life.

“Currently, I'm not dating,” he said. “For sure, one of this days I will meet my Mister Right, but for now I'm still waiting for him, ha ha ha ...
Life is getting better, I have a good job with a national company, my English probably is not perfect but it's thousands years better than when I came to the U.S., I spend so many hours at school to improve it,” Juan said.

“Trying every day to meet people and make more friends. Friends are a blessing when they stand by you when you need them.”

More reading

To read Juan’s full story, click HERE.