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Michael Cashman: “I love young me for having the guts to commit to something”

Posted On: 7 Feb 2020   |   Posted By: The Big Issue

At 16 years old, I was just starting out as a young adult on an acting career. I knew my own sexuality, I knew I was attracted to boys. I was really, really trying to find a place to belong. I came from the East End of London to the West End of London, this other world that I could hide myself in and fantasise in, a world of tiny gay clubs where the strongest drink you could get was a black coffee. People pushed pills towards you, and you ducked away from them. It was an incredibly confusing and brilliant time. And life threw some heavy punches sometimes, in places where I least expected them, like my school. But I was a smiler. I looked out with wide, wide eyes, smiling at the world in which I was living and which I didn't really understand.
The hard times I went through you can't, as a young person, rationalise [Cashman suffered regular sexual abuse as a young boy]. In a way you can't give them space because they would pull you down. Often when things happen to you, you find survival mechanisms and part of...

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