Thursday, September 12, 2013

Being gay? Ain't nobody got time for that!

As I mentioned earlier, less than 10 people know about my sexuality.  (Well, I have actually told less than 10 people.)  The main reaction is usually, "Why?!"  They wonder how I've kept this secret for so long without going crazy.  A few reasons I've thought of...

A lot of it had to do with denial.  'Me? Gay? Never!'  (maybe just a little bi.)  I felt if I stayed a good Mormon boy, everything would take care of itself, I'd fall in love with a beautiful woman, have lots of babies, and we live happily ever after.  I forced myself to date and like girls.  I refused to label myself as gay.

Another way I never went crazy was I stayed busy.  Always busy.  During high school, I stayed active (not so much on the sports side, but more the academic side) and I had a part-time job in the evening.  The more time I was doing stuff, the less I had to worry or even think about my sexuality.  The busy-body mentality continued through college with my two part-time jobs and classes.  'Drowning my sorrows for being gay: Ain't nobody got time for that!'  (Sorry, I just had to squeeze in that famous phrase somewhere!)  It was after college when I really got my career started, that I felt tired.  The denial was slipping away, I actually had MORE free time during that first 'real' job.  I accepted (finally) that I was gay and I made a choice on how to live my life.  And life is good.

Last reason for not going crazy.  I stayed happy.  I think this was the key.  I didn't let the denial or exhaustion ruin my mood.  

I'm sorry if these paragraphs sound like all the other gay Mormons' lives and I'm totally boring you.  I feel I need to throw out a little background before I talk about my present day thoughts and feelings.

Ok...  Changing the subject.  (I probably should just end the post now and do this another day, but it's been on my mind.)

A habit of mine (and I'm sure other people do this) is when I see a blog post, I'll scroll down to see how many comments there are, and that determines just how 'juicy' the post really is.  Well, I hope to get a comment or two with this little thought I had today.  (Not for the comment count, because I really am curious to read your opinion!)

When were you taught that being gay was bad?    (Let me clarify, that I 100% no longer believe this.  I accept and love who I am and think the whole gay thing is a blessing, albeit all the challenges.)   Gay is good.

I extend the question because I can't answer it!  And now I feel like a jerk.  :)  When did the negative connotations of homosexuality reach my brain?  Was it in elementary school?  Did it come from all the priesthood interviews or church talks?  Did it come from friends who talked bad about gay people?  Was it the media?  Or is it all of the above?!  While I can explain the denial and the busyness, I can't explain when or how being gay got such a bad rap.  I know there are few readers here (one more post and I'll add myself to the Moho Directory) but I hope I can learn a few things from your responses.

(I use parentheses way too much.)


  1. I didn't find out being gay was bad until after I had already being playing sexually with my best friend during one steamy summer at about the age of 13. I had no idea about sex as I had lived a very sheltered life. It took me quite a while to understand that what we had done together and the feelings I had for him were anything but normal. The term gay wasn't in common usage back then.

    After joining the Mormon Church I learned through their beliefs that homosexuality was wrong. I still didn't know that that was me.

    Later, I got a slap in the face of reality when my father told me I better quit grabbing one of my other friend's knees as we were horsing around. People would think I was a queer.

    Queer? What? I didn't know what queer meant but I figured it must be bad in the way he said it. I do remember feeling humiliated that he had spoken to me like that in front of my friend.

    It wasn't until later in life that I figured out my dad knew about my relationship with David and wasn't brave enough to talk to me about it. Maybe he thought it was just a phase I was going through. He should have known better. I had always been a sissy boy.

  2. Thanks, Adon, for sharing your comment. I enjoy learning more about you from your blog and from what you've said here.

    I'm sorry you had to go through that as a kid. Sounds like it just gets engraved in our minds early on, and we grow up with that negative connotation.

    I hope the next generation of gay Mormons and their families can change that.

  3. I can't pinpoint an exact moment, but I think for me the concept of gay being bad just came from elementary school name-calling. If it was an insult, certainly it wasn't a good thing to be. I think I probably didn't spend much time thinking about it because, well, I just didn't let myself think much about sex, etc. for the first 25 years of my life. I remember thinking when I was a kid that sex was bad PERIOD. Even for married people. That maybe contributed to my denial of anything sexual being a part of my life for so long. Who knows?

    1. It's sad that the negative connotations come at such a young age. I think it's so imperative to teach the dangers of bullying at the earliest age as possible in both church and school.

  4. Elementary school. Fifth or sixth grade. I noticed that I was attracted to other boys although I didn't really think of it in sexual terms. Also around that time I began sexual experimentation and that always involved other boys. I didn't have any comprehension that I was gay at the time, or even what "gay" was, but looking back I realize that's when it began.

    1. Thanks for the comment Controller. Seems like a lot of us knew something was different about us in elementary school. (BTW, I enjoy reading your blog posts!)