Tate Barkley grew up in the small towns of North Carolina, where money was tight, dreams seldom came true, and family secrets were kept hidden. His Grandmother’s house was a sanctuary where he felt loved―and her big Sunday dinners nourished his stomach and soul.
After his parents divorced, he discovered his mother’s new boyfriend, and eventual husband, was his biological father― a charming dreamer who would disappear for months at a time, leaving his family to fend for themselves.
As a teen, Tate began drinking. His father was a heavy drinker, and Tate was always looking for ways to connect with him and hold on to the moment before he slipped away again. Drinking gave Tate a sense of calm, and it numbed him from the love he was missing in his life. After years of drinking, losing his law practice, and hitting rock bottom, he realized he either needed to take responsibility and change―or he’d end up dead.
This is a Southern boy’s story of surviving in a good ole boys’ world. Tate fought his way back, ended a life built on lies, and forged a path to accept his true self―with or without his father’s love.
Barkley paints, in vivid and touching detail, his torment as a repressed gay man at the dawn of the AIDS era, and how, as he grew older, his drinking drove him toward the edge of total ruin. —BookLIfe
About the Author
For years Tate Barkley lived in shame―of living in poverty, of alcoholism and addiction, of being a closeted gay man. His story may sound familiar to anyone struggling to feel “less than.” Now sober through Alcoholics Anonymous, he wants to share his story, hoping it will help others leave their shame behind and discover the peace they deserve.
His memoir, Sunday Dinners, Moonshine, and Men, recounts Tate’s troubled relationship with his father, his journey to overcome shame, and the scarcity mindset that blocked his ability to find peace. Tate offers readers a deeply personal account of his dysfunctional childhood, from the backwoods of North Carolina to his family’s struggles with poverty in Central Florida and their ultimate move to the boomtown of 1970s Houston, Texas. He details his attempts to repress his sexuality and control his escalating drinking as he became a successful attorney, only to hit rock bottom and lose it all. Tate’s story will resonate with readers as they follow his quest to accept himself and find the promise of serenity sobriety brings.
Tate is a practicing attorney, speaker, author, and educator, living in Houston, Texas, with his husband of six years, Anson, and their dog, Emerson.