In 2009, a gaggle of notable personalities were asked to contribute to a book entitled Dear Me: A Letter to My Sixteen-Year-Old Self in order to raise money for the Elton John AIDS Foundation; the idea being for each celebrity to write a letter to themselves, aged sixteen. Below is a charming example of such a missive, written by Elton John in March 2009, to himself in 1963.
I think we’d all love to be able to send 16 year-old selves a letter, and once you read Elton John’s letter to the 16 year-old Reginald Kenneth Dwight he was in 1963, I think you will feel a certain warmth in your heart. There is so much I’d say to my 16 year-old self, but as the saying goes, “Hindsight is 20/20.” What’s the most important thing you’d tell youself of at age 16?
March 8th 2009.
You are a very young 16. you know nothing about sex — you don’t even know what a “queer” is. Trust me when I tell you — you are “queer”; you are a gay boy. I made the mistake of not having sex until I was 23! I loved being with another man and felt relieved that I finally knew who I was. I made the mistake of falling in love too soon because I was naive and romantic. My advice to you is never to chase love — it will find you when you least expect it. Have FUN, have lots of safe sex and enjoy your sexuality. Be proud of who you are and, as you get older and wiser fight for gay rights — I’m 46 years older than you are, and we have a long way to go. In certain countries we are still not treated as equals, especially by the so-called “Christian” Church. I made a lot of mistakes. Stay away from drugs — they’re a waste of time. Stand up for every human being’s rights. Be loving, kind and strong. Set an example. You’re going to have a hell of a life!!
PS. CHANGE YOUR NAME
From: Letters of Note (http://www.lettersofnote.com/2011/01/dear-sixteen-year-old-me.html)