Monday, December 14, 2015

A gay Mormon's adventures on Tinder (part 2)

Hello and Merry Christmas! The Moho blogosphere has died down a bit since the unexpected announcement on the Handbook revision. I'm still pissed about it, but feel it's the right time to return to my random, light-hearted ramblings. So...let's talk about Tinder, again.

Earlier this year, I decided to join the Tinder game. The app uses your location to find potential matches/dates. You get a stack of profiles with pictures and a short paragraph, and you swipe left if the person is a "NO." Swipe right if you're interested. If you both swipe right, then it's a match, and you can chat.

I made a post right after I downloaded the app, so I was an extreme novice. My buddy over at The Mostly Unfabulous Life of a Mormon Boy requested an update (6 months ago.) So here it is!

I have a typical introductory paragraph on Tinder. Simple but nothing too "out there." But if I deleted my description and wrote about my ACTUAL life, it would be:
30-something disaffected gay Mormon who is still kind of in the closet. I've never had a serious relationship with a guy. I like cuddling. 
Fortunately, my description is nothing like the above, and I've matched with a handful of guys.

I still use the app and below you'll find a list of my experiences/thoughts on Tinder. Now, I've had some great things happen with the app and met some awesome people, but this will focus on the weirder/unique side. (because that's more fun to blog about!)

Here we go....

  • I matched with a guy about 7 years younger than me who keeps calling me "Daddy."
  • I did a quick Google search on a match, and found his mugshot. 
  • Another Google search on a different guy led me to a match's naked pictures and videos. 
  • I matched with a great guy, then found out he was married (to a woman.) Very unfortunate as the dude is hot. 
  • I've learned that any guy "22 miles away" from me is most likely someone who has a long layover at the airport in my city.  (Meaning it's highly unlikely I'll ever meet this person.)
  • Correct grammar is such a turn-on. 
  • Height is such a big deal on Tinder, (or at least gay Tinder!) it's fascinating to me. (If anyone cares, I'm 6'1"!)
  • While swiping through profiles, I found a guy who was obviously in an LDS Chapel. (carpeted walls, Jesus pic, etc.) Sadly, we didn't match. Where art thou mystery Moho?!  
  • Having a co-worker pop up is quite awkward. 
  • Getting compliments still makes me feel all tingly inside. 

Ok, that last one wasn't awkward. Basically I think Tinder is a nice stepping stone in this whole coming-out journey and accepting myself. I'm not hiding behind an alias. It's almost liberating that I just get to be myself.

Maybe Part 3 will be some kind of success story! :-)


Sunday, November 8, 2015

You are not alone. You are loved.

Normally, when one gets some upsetting news, you need some time. A few hours to calm down, a good night's rest, some contemplation, some discussion with others. Then you move on.

I thought this would be the case after I heard the news Thursday regarding the leaked revised Handbook policy about the church excluding kids of same-sex couples from membership. I hoped to 'make sense of it all' after a couple days of cooling off.

I haven't. It still bothers me. I'm still upset (if not more upset than I was on Thursday.)

The thing is, I had a hard time pinpointing WHY I was so upset. I've distanced myself from the church over the past couple years, so in reality, this shouldn't bother me.

But it does.

During my weekend of thinking and pondering, this thought came to my mind several times: Why on earth would a gay couple want to raise their kids in the church?! In a way, I was trying to play devil's advocate so I could achieve that "moving on" process I just mentioned.

Then I came across this heartbreaking post on Facebook from Devon Gibby, the author of A Shout From the Housetops. (please read the FB post.) Ouch. Right in the feels.

Devon is gay, married a woman, had two kids. They divorced, and he now lives with his partner. Devon and his ex-wife have decided to raise their kids in the church. But because Devon now lives with his partner, the kids' membership and baptism are now in jeopardy.

He says:
"Children of felons and rapists don't even have such a harsh punishment. I'm really hurting. Just when I thought that I had found a way to live with tolerance toward the church they've come out and attacked my family in a very personal way."
I then thought of other folks who used to be in mixed-orientation marriages who have since divorced. Now their kids' membership and baptism are in jeopardy.

This is why I'm upset. As Devon said, it's an attack on the family. I'm angry because this policy affects a lot of families, families that are just trying their best to do what is right.

We are hurting. We are confused. Even a handful of TBM's are hurting.

Some other random observations from the last couple days: (because you know, I like short, random stuff)

*Of course, they got the apostle with the gay brother to make the clarification. It bothers me the church uses D. Todd everytime they need to discuss LGBT issues. "Look, even an apostle has a gay family member! We love all the gays!" (sarcasm)

*The Ex-Mormon forum on Reddit gained 130 subscribers in just one day. The average is 20. Many people are threatening to leave the church because of the new policy.

*Can't confirm - but I've seen several statements that calls to suicide hotlines have greatly increased this weekend.

*Zing. (read the whole thing)

*An astonishing 18 blog posts were made to the Moho Directory just this weekend, the majority venting about the policy changes. I've never seen so many posts in a short amount of time.

*Most of my straight, TBM Facebook friends either shared the Well Behaved Mormon Woman blog post or the one about the woman raised by two lesbians (sorry, not linking here) with the line "This is a great perspective." It's like they're doing their duty by sharing the link, then moving on. They don't get it.

We are hurting.
While many of us can vent via a blog post or Facebook status, I'm extremely worried about those who have remained quiet. Those who are deeply closeted and are confused by all the news. Those in MOM's who have kids and thinking about their future. Those preparing to go on a mission, but now not so sure. Those who are scared to talk about this for fear of rejection.

To these people - please know that you are loved.

I love you.

You are not alone.

I've seen the above graphic many times on FB and Twitter. These resources are there for you. And I'm here too. If you need to vent, chat, etc., use the Contact Form or email me, and I'll listen (er, uh, read.)

To the leaders of North Star. I've made it very clear I don't agree with your organization. But your believing members are hurting. They are confused. They need help. Please develop a buddy system and have members check up on each other - and if possible - in person. North Star folks are extremely delicate. They need a listening ear. They need a hug. And I'm sorry, but a temple trip and fast two weeks from now ain't gonna cut it.

It's going to take some time for me to cool down. At the same time, we all need to reach out to those directly affected by these changes and show them our gratitude.

You are loved.

Thursday, November 5, 2015

Page from church handbook leaked, Internet blows up

It started flowing around the 'net today as a rumor, but by the end of the day, it was all confirmed.

It leaves a sick feeling in my stomach, but at the same time, I'm really not surprised by the announcements.

Today we've learned that:

1) Children living in a same-sex household may not be blessed as babies or baptized.

2) Those in a same-sex marriage fall under the definition of apostasy.

I swear, every chance the church takes a step forward when it comes to accepting homosexuals, it takes 472 steps back.

There are a lot of thoughts running through my mind right now - mainly anger. So this post will be quite scattered.

===

Most people know that I'm LDS, but a much smaller percentage know I'm gay. As news of this announcement spreads over the coming days and weeks, am I going to be seen as a homophobic jerk due to my association with the church?! At the time of this writing, 3 of the 4 broadcast TV channels in Salt Lake City are reporting the news on their homepages. (C'mon ABC 4, you're a little behind! EDIT: It's there now!) With this kind of coverage, it won't take long for this news to go national and international and I'll just want to hide and hope friends and acquaintances forget that I'm LDS.

===

Today I've also been thinking a lot about the TBM gay folks. How do they feel about today's news? Are they a little upset with their own church? Or does stuff like this make their faith and devotion even stronger? Is this even a story to them? Blogger GayMormonMan, who says he's a TBM, seems a little perturbed by everything that happened today. Some of the most anti-gay marriage people I've come across are gay/SSA men married to women. I'm really curious as to what's going through their minds right now.

===

Randall Thacker of Affirmation was quoted in this Salt Lake Trib article:
"I cannot imagine Jesus Christ denying any child a baptism because of the status of their parents. It goes against everything I ever thought the savior and baptism was about."
I admire Thacker's humbleness in giving a quote! My quote would have been a little on the mean/upset/angry side! 
===
This commenter on KUTV's Facebook page was not as conservative as Thacker: 
"When will they stop with the hatred. Now they are involving kids. But, at the same time - I would hope a gay couple would not want their kids affiliated with that church anyway. Just sickening they felt the need to have this declared/announced. Shame on them."
===
But again, should we really be surprised by all this? We all know how the church feels about same-sex marriage. I guess the leaked handbook photo and subsequent media coverage by multiple outlets (during sweeps month!) is making this all a little overwhelming. 
While the announcement bums me out, it'll be interesting to see how everyone (straight, gay, LDS, non-LDS, ex-LDS) react to this PR nightmare. (Thanks John Dehlin!) 

===

Article of Faith #2 - We believe that men will be punished for their own sins, and not for Adam’s transgression. 


Sunday, November 1, 2015

My rejection letter from the LDS Church

Many years ago, I was in a rut at my then workplace. I decided to put out some feelers and see what other job opportunities existed. A good friend of mine suggested I apply for a manager-type job with the LDS Church. She said I'd be good at it. I was honored that this friend thought I should apply for such a high-profile job - so I did. It was a great opportunity in a career field that I loved (and went to college for!)

I didn't meet all the requirements. The COJCOLDS wanted 10 years experience and I had about 8 in the related field. But I still thought I had a chance. Back then, I wanted this position. How cool would it be to work for the church I grew up with and devoted two years of my life for?! (I know that sentence may come across sarcastic, but I'm not really trying to be!) :-)

I freshened up my resume, wrote a nice cover letter, and applied.

This was their response:


In a world where most employers don't send out rejection letters, I was kinda surprised to get this. (Especially the "Will Not Be A Finalist" in the subject line!)

I didn't get my hopes up, but I was still kind of bummed when this showed up in the ole Inbox. Applying for jobs will always be a tedious process, and after this email it was back to the drawing board.

Today, I have a job I love, nowhere near the headquarters of the LDS Church. So the "Best wishes for your success" line in the above message actually came true.

Over the years, this simple form letter from a "No reply" email account has really made me think. What if I really did get the job?! Would I still be in the closet? Would I be miserable? Would I still be single, or pressured into marriage? Since you have to have a current temple recommend to work for the church, would I have to confess to my bishop about my "same-sex attraction?" What would I have done with the doubts about the church I've accumulated over the years?

A bunch of questions I'm glad I don't have to worry about answering.

This email I've saved for 7 years also shows how naive I was. What was I thinking?! A gay Mormon approaching 30 seriously applying to work for the church. I guess I had the mindset that I could overcome my gayness and somehow work for an organization that really doesn't know what to do with people like me. Just think, me, a gay person, would have to defend my employer regarding conference talks on traditional marriage. That would have been fun. (This time, I am being sarcastic.) 2008 was NOT that long ago! It's fascinating how much my views on homosexuality and the church have changed.  

Seven years later, I'm more than grateful I don't work for the church. That would have been an absolute recipe for disaster. Plus I would have hated wearing a white shirt and tie six days a week.

Crisis averted.

Sunday, October 25, 2015

Who are you? Part 2 - Not all of us are Moho's

Speaking on behalf of Adele: Hello.

In my continued quest to share the not-so-public stories of fellow Moho's, I bring you Part 2. However, this story does not involve a Moho. (Say what?!) I've learned that not all readers to this blog are Mormon and gay! Who would've thunk.

I was contacted by an awesome guy who called himself a "moderately-secular Jew" and my curiosity piqued. I tossed out a few questions and below you'll read his story. It's so interesting to learn about someone who grew up in a different environment, but how similar our stories can be. (All his answers are great, but I especially like the response to the next-to-last question.)  

I really love doing this. I hope you'll share your story with me as well.  

Q.  Briefly explain your correlation to the Moho community. 
A. Well, when I was first coming out for real, I was Googling around and somehow found myself on a Moho blog. Quite frankly, it was really interesting and it was linked to lots of other similar blogs. I've always really loved personal narratives (This American Life, The Moth, etc.) and they were basically people going through something similar to what I was going through, but in very different circumstances. I guess it put things in perspective. After reading them for a while, I became use to the terminology and it has sort of remained something interesting and very human to read when I'm procrastinating. I sometimes feel a bit like I'm invading your community, so I tend to try not to be too involved other than reading.

Q. As a non-Mormon, what attracted you to all the gay Mormon bloggers? 
A. Oh, well, I guess this is a bit complicated. So, I was raised in a relatively secular Jewish family and lived in an area where no one was particularly religious, regardless of what religion they were. I've always been interested in religion in general and more conservative forms of Christianity in particular. It's just very different than what I grew up in, so it's interesting to hear that perspective. That was probably what came to mind when I stumbled on a moho blog. I guess I've learned in time from bloggers how different Mormonism is and I've gained an appreciation for it. I think it's pretty neat for a lot of reasons: It's uniquely American, it's based around a very organized form of community, and it gives really practical implications for how to live your life. I don't think it's for me, but it's definitely interesting.

Q. Explain your coming out experience. 
A. It sort of went in two phases. I first told some people at a party in high school. A friend asked me if I was gay, I think as a joke, but I had been thinking of telling people anyway, so I made myself spit out yes and then burst into tears. While my then-girlfriend (!) was consoling me, I made my brother call my parents and tell them. They weren't angry, but they were concerned that I hadn't thought it through and and a psychologist friend of theirs recommended that I see a therapist who focused on teen identity issues. He kept trying to convince me that there was no reason to lock down my identity and that it would come in time. I was scared and wasn't really in the fighting mood, so I just stayed closeted for the rest of high school. 
When I got to my very liberal college, I quickly realized that any trepidation I had would have to take a backseat to my desire to date some of the very beautiful gay men that seemed to be everywhere. With the help of a support group, I told my friends and my immediate family, which by that point was pretty uneventful. It was stressful for the first year or so because I didn't really have anyone to confide in other than my support group (probably one reason why I really appreciated the Moho blogs), but after that, it was good.


Q. What's your status right now? (Single, in a relationship, etc.)  Are you happy? 
A. I'm married. I met my husband seven years ago, less than a year after I came out. We had both just gotten out of other relationships and he claimed he could never see us together, but after a few months of hanging out together every day, he finally came around. We got married last summer in a big, casual, outdoor ceremony with my older brother officiating, our other brothers as best men, and our parents holding the poles of the chuppah (it's a wedding canopy that represents your new household). 
I'm really very happy. My husband is great - he's odd and delightful. We live in a gay-ish part of a big city, where a lot of our friends are in walking distance and my cousins are close by. I have a job I really like, where I'm out and where my husband comes to hang out with my office. I had thought at one point that being gay would prevent me from working in most sectors, but in reality, turns out you can do just fine as a gay guy in the defense industry. Things are good with my family and I still have almost all my old friends. I've also made a lot of new friends, primarily through work and rock climbing, which I do with a gay group.

Q. What advice do you have for Moho's who may be struggling with their sexuality and trying to balance church attendance? 
A. I am wildly unqualified to give advice on this - I got more religious when I came out. Here's my best shot: So, when I was a senior in college, there was a big argument in my religious community about a reading of the sexual prohibitions in Leviticus at an important occasion. It was a long story and the outcome was fine, but it left me with a bad taste in my mouth about how some people in the community wanted to preserve an unimportant tradition at the expense of the dignity of their gay peers, against the advice of our rabbi. At the same time, my boyfriend was going through a serious crisis and the only time we could really relax together was Friday night, when I was usually at prayers. Things were also getting very serious between us and I began to realize I would have to make some concessions to make a life with the non-Jewish guy I loved (intermarriage is still taboo for Jews, much more so than homosexuality). 
I ultimately decided that I had to approach religion on my own terms or it wouldn't be a source of joy for me anymore. If I skipped Sabbath prayers to have a family dinner with him, so be it. I could make decisions on an ad hoc basis without worrying how religious or non-religious it makes me. 
I've found that has worked really well for me. I realize it's a lot harder to approach Mormonism on your own terms, but I think it's at least a helpful way to conceptualize it.

 Q.  Anything else you'd like to add? 
A. Whoever you are and whatever you're facing, you're not the first and you're not the only one. People can get so wrapped up in the idea that they are unique or in an unusual situation. In truth, everyone around you has been in a slightly unique situation and they all got out okay. Take strength in the fact that others have faced the same thing and move forward to whatever that might be.

Sunday, October 18, 2015

Sometimes I just wanna eat dinner on the patio

No idea who these people are. Just your basic stock photo. :)
First off, thanks to all of you who responded to my "Who Are You?" idea. I've got some great stories from readers and looking forward to sharing. (If you're wondering what this is all about, or you'd like to contribute - check out the last post for details.)

Moving on. The more I've accepted my sexuality, the less active I've become in the LDS Church. I've wanted to stay under the radar when it comes to church activity, and I've successfully done so. Here's how I did it:

1. Move out of the old ward.
2. Transfer records to the new ward.
3. Don't go to the new ward.

I've only been contacted twice since moving to my new place. Both included a casual invite to attend church, but neither carried much pressure.

The break from church has been nice - I'm less stressed, anxiety has gone down, and I don't feel as depressed. Plus having a full weekend - 2 whole days - is pretty dang awesome.

But there are some repercussions from flying under the radar: my social life has disintegrated. All my life, my main circle of friends have been people in my ward, stake, seminary, institute, etc. etc. Yes, there have been co-worker friends, neighborhood friends, etc., but the majority have been from church. Now that I've moved (about 25 miles) from the old ward, starting anew socially has been difficult. While I consider myself an extrovert, I've really struggled making new friends outside of the Mormon bubble.

Online friends/acquaintances suggest I look for people on Meetup or try a gay bar/church/hangout. But the thought of that gives me as much anxiety as returning to church! 

I realized just how much I miss social outings a couple weeks ago; I met up with my old group of church friends. (We could meet more often, but our current distance makes it a real challenge.) It was a simple restaurant dinner out on the patio. The weather was amazing, food was good, and I thoroughly enjoyed catching up with everyone. We all laughed and had a great time. I miss these moments I've taken for granted for the past 20 years.

I know what you're thinking. "GMS, you've decided to not go to church anymore, so quit being a cry baby and find some new friends." (While the TBM's are likely suggesting I just go back to church.) And I could respond with: "Yes, you're probably right. I need to get out more." Seeing this all typed out is somewhat of a motivation to get be back on the social track. Stay tuned.

And if you think you live near me (not in Utah), hit me up! :)



Sunday, October 11, 2015

Who are you? Part 1 of (hopefully) many

I've shared this plenty of times - but it's worth repeating: I love blogging. I'm grateful I have this outlet to share my story and what's on my mind. Blogging is "so 5 (10?) years ago," but it's all about showing up fashionably late. It's liberating to spew my thoughts of growing up gay and Mormon.

I have no regrets in starting this little blog two years ago and for various reasons, I'm glad I've kept my posts anonymous. Ironically, today is National Coming Out Day, but sorry, I won't be doing that publically on my blog! (But those who've reached out to me know that once I'm comfortable chatting, I reveal my true self and am Facebook friends with a few of you!)

As I've shared my story with you over the past two years, there's one thing that I DON'T like in authoring a blog: I don't know YOUR story. Yes, you. The person reading this right now. YOU. If you haven't reached out via email or left a comment, I don't know anything about you. And that bugs me! Blogger does throw out a few analytics, but still, I'm in the dark and I have so many questions I want to ask YOU. Yes, you. I love reading others' stories - hearing them all was my motivation to start sharing my own. They're all so different. So fascinating. And for many, so secret.  

While Gay Mormon Stories and Far Between are great outlets to share stories, you lose the anonymity. Staying anonymous allows ME to share a little bit more - a few extra secrets. So this gave me an idea. I'll start collecting YOUR stories and post them here. All anonymously, of course. People tend to share more and dig a little deeper if they know there would be no repercussions. This is similar to the confessions stunt I did, but on a more detailed scale. (Sheesh, I'm so nosy!) :) And again, those of you who know the 'real me,' the reason for doing this makes perfect sense!

I've reached out to a few people and I'll continue to do so. Below you'll find the first Q & A. This interview is with a straight woman who married a gay man. (*Names have been changed.) The only background I had was this was a woman in a Mixed-Orientation Marriage and I based my questions off that single fact - and I tossed out all the questions at once. These stories are in random order. I have no reason for starting off with this interview - other than the fact it's extremely interesting.

If YOU (yes, you) want to share your story - let me know. Contact me using the form on the right or drop me a line - gaymormonsouthpaw (at) gmail (dot) com. And again, I promise full anonymity. You give me your one single fact - and I'll ask my questions based on that.

Without further ado....

Q. Briefly explain your correlation to the Moho community. 
A. There is almost no motivation for me to remain connected to the gay Mormon community because I have left Mormonism entirely. Fairly early in my marriage I fantasized about turning my mixed-orientation marriage into a source of strength for other mormons in the same type of marriage. We could host fabulous brunch support group sessions with other couples and help strengthen other marriages. It was a very complex set of dreams that I had hoped to accomplish to make this arrangement make some sense. Then I woke up and realized that I wanted absolutely nothing to do with Mormonism any more, so those dreams of heroism died an unfulfilled death.

Q. Did you know your husband was gay before marrying him? 
A. I did. There were a couple of stages of coming to this awareness. After our first date, my co-workers were asking how it went and I told them that I would probably never see him again because Craig* was pretty obviously gay. I figured that was the end of that. But Craig kept calling and we kept going out so I began to dismiss the idea that he was actively gay, and was maybe just effeminate.After we had dated for about a year, we took a long weekend to drive and let Craig meet my parents. This may seem a little unbelievable but on that drive Craig was reading the new Greg Louganis biography. Once I saw that book, I figured at that point that he was definitely gay, or at least had those inclinations. On the drive back from meeting my parents, Craig made the big reveal. For as aware as I was that Craig was probably gay, the talk went poorly and I freaked. It made it so real to hear him say that about himself, plus I realized the degree to which he still identified with his homosexuality. That was startling to hear.

Q. How did 'the talk' go once he confessed? 
A. I think the talk went poorly, considering all the clues that I had already picked up on. At this point I loved him and this was a big unknown and risky variable that was being introduced into the relationship. It was horribly scary and I didn't expect the massive emotional reaction that came out. It was hours of sobbing and I was so sad.But I'm a live-and-let-live type of gal and thought that everyone deserved their chance at making a family work so by the next day I was pretty chill with the idea. I told him almost immediately that I knew he was still Craig and this new information didn't change my feelings for him.In hindsight, that was idiocy. Knowing what I know now, I realize that I was only being given part of the information. I didn't know this at the time but Craig had already had multiple male sex partners and he was still actively banging his best friend, but at the time, all I saw was a nice dude who wanted a shot at having a family.

Q. What are the advantages of being married to a gay man? 
A. Craig was a somewhat stereotypical gay man. He liked to shop, he liked to chat, and he liked to keep the floors clean. So those were all pretty handy benefits. I am domestic-skills impaired so for our first Christmas as a married couple I gave him a sewing machine, knowing that I would soon get some fantastic curtains for our new house.

Q. Disadvantages? 
A. Too many and too painful to dig too deep here. The overarching problem is that everything was a lie. He was trying to fake straight because his conservative, LDS upbringing guilted him into that. I'm not the first person to use this terminology but it was an immediate sensation that I had just been pulled into the closet with him, and NOT in a fun high school make-out sort of way. I cut off my friends and family. I completely turned inward because of this big secret that I was now also living. In retrospect, it was devastating to me emotionally but I was loyal to a fault and would never throw him over for something that was entirely out of his control.The major problem is that our two kids ended up caught in this lie. In the end, I learned that entering a MOM is a completely selfish move for both Craig and myself. I was selfish to expect him to limit himself to a heterosexual marriage that he had only limited ability to engage in. He was selfish to expect me to give up a normal sense of marriage, partnership, and sex life to play cover for his homosexuality. He married me to be his beard, and everybody lost.

Q. What is your status now? (divorced? Exmo? etc.) What's his status? 
A. As for the status of the marriage, we are right now working through a contentious divorce and it is not pleasant. He has a new partner and "has never been happier." He wants to leg it away from us and pretend that there is no financial responsibility to us because he is so happy moving on and pretending that we don't exist.As for religion, I am exmormon and haven't attended mormon church services for maybe about three years now. Our kids are teens and they have also left the mormon church. Craig doesn't talk to me at all and lives a few thousand miles away so I am only guessing, but I'm pretty sure that he is also now exmormon.

Q. Do you two remain friends? 
A. No. I am too susceptible to his lies and self-serving manipulation so I have had to make a clean break now that the kids are old enough to manage their own communications with him. Plus I see how he has treated his kids now that he has a new partner and wants to pretend that they don't exist, and it's pretty difficult being friends with that kind of person. The dishonesty killed the friendship and relationship far more than any gayness could have.

Q. What advice do you have for folks about to enter a MOM? 
A. Anyone entering a MOM is making a horrible mistake. It cannot succeed and is entirely unfair to absolutely everyone involved. Each partner is being selfish and both are being cruel to any resulting children.

Q. How much blame to you put on the church? (If any.) 
A. I definitely hold the church as being partially to blame. Craig was so indoctrinated and terrified to be his gay self that he had to fake a heterosexual marriage. I was so indoctrinated that my only path forward as a woman was to be married and produce children that I accepted this sham of a marriage. The church puts this burden of expectation of a single path forward for its members and that will always be a recipe for disaster, especially when dealing with encouraging mixed-orientation marriage, as was the church policy back when we were dating and married.

Q. Is life better now? How so? 
A. Life is better to be away from the daily head games that come when one partner is sleeping with dozens of anonymous randoms every month and racking up the more permanent lovers in several cities that he had to travel to for work. The lies are over and done with but I'm now almost 50 years old and have little to no prospect of ever trusting another man again. My kids miss their dad but they don't recognize that man that he is now. He used to be an engaged father who was fun and awesome. Now that he is done living the lie, he has moved on in every respect and has no time for them at all anymore. He will go several months without calling them. It is a very messy situation. Nobody won.

Q. Anything else you'd like to add? 
A. Maybe one thing that some people might wonder is whether the kids now know that their father is gay and how that went down. This is something that I thought about a lot before I acted. For about a year before I told them, I introduced them to the TV show "Modern Family." We lived abroad and didn't watch US television so they had never seen it. I introduced that show to them to normalize the idea of gay couples of how they are just normal members of the family.One afternoon I gave them the basic run down to catch them up on the details of their family. I told them that their dad was gay (he was already living thousands of miles away from us at the time is why he wasn't a part of the conversation), that he wanted a divorce, and that he had a new boyfriend. They were not at all shocked about the gay part, and hardly cared. Gay is so normal to this generation that the impact from that was incredibly minimal. The massive impact was how they were crushed that he had told me he wanted a divorce. That was the entire emotional blow. But funnily enough, my clever children processed this information for a few minutes, asked some basic questions, and then said, "Hey, is this why you had us start watching 'Modern Family?'" That was so funny that it only took them minutes to see right through my plan to normalize as much as possible. My kids were 15 and 13 at the time.  

Sunday, September 27, 2015

That one time a haunted house date nearly turned me straight

Happy Fall! I love this time of year. Cooler weather. Football. Start of the holiday season.

Seeing the sudden display of Halloween decorations at stores (they sure do get bigger and bigger every year) reminded me of a date that was a big turning point for me.

Many years ago, I went on a group date to a haunted house. (I probably don't need to tell you this, but yes, it was a Mormon group date.) This haunted house was one of the super freaky deaky ones in the middle of nowhere. The employees work and prepare all year for their one month of business.

Now, haunted houses don't really bother me, EXCEPT for when I have to crawl. For some reason, claustrophobia hits me like a rock when I have to get on my hands and knees.

But anyway, back to this date. The girl was awesome. Great person to talk to, funny, cute, we had similar interests, all the good stuff. (So what if I had no physical attraction to her whatsoever!) :-)

She, on the other hand, wasn't a big fan of haunted houses. It only took a few minutes of scares and screams before I knew she was miserable. I think her exact words were, "I don't like this."

Then something interesting happened. Something I had never felt before. She grabbed my hand. And held on tight. She moved in close to me as we walked. I am considerably taller, so she fit just right under my chin. I felt this sudden burst of power. My typical bubble had been burst. She was looking for comfort and security and I was able to give it to her. I was ENJOYING this physical touch.

This gave me a new high. Maybe I could develop feelings for a woman?! It's like the gay switch was turned off and I'm now heterosexual!!! Woo hoo!! Plan of salvation here we come!

But the high didn't last long. The key word for this story is: temporary. For just a few moments, I thought I could be straight and live the life I was taught to have. When the night was over, and I went back home, I likely imagined what it would be like to hold hands and comfort another guy. (And it probably would have felt a LOT better.) The date was a temporary rush that quickly dissipated.

I've had a lot of these temporary moments. I start having a really good time with a girl, and think, maybe she's the one! Only to return back to who I really am once I get home -- gay. And always will be.

The high I felt at the haunted house, followed by the low at the end of the night - was the deciding factor for me to stop trying to find "the one" (girl.) There's no way I could turn these temporary bursts of attraction into a life-long marriage to a woman. I felt horrible leading these girls on - and it was time to move on. The haunted house was a turning point as I started to shift my focus to dates with guys instead of women - and as I've mentioned many times throughout my blog - I've never been happier.

Have I gone to a haunted house with a guy? No. But I think it would be fabulous! (As long as there's no crawling.)      




Sunday, September 13, 2015

Appearing on the TLC Network will only get you into trouble

I remember the good ol' days of the TLC Network, back when they showed stuff like Trading Spaces. Today, the network is surrounded by controversy:

*Mama June in "Here Comes Honey Boo Boo" was linked to a convicted sex offender.

*Hypocrite Josh Dugger in "19 Kids and Counting" admitted to molesting his siblings and then cheated on his wife using an Ashley Madison account.

*"Breaking Amish" (which I actually watched) turned out to be completely fake.

I could go on and on.

And now it looks like the dudes in "My Husband's Not Gay" are facing some unwanted attention. I reviewed the show back in January and made note the three married guys were all involved with "People Can Change" and Journey Into Manhood - a place for "men who are self-motivated and serious about resolving unwanted homosexual attractions."

Recently, Jeff Bennion and Pret Dahlgren, who both appeared in "My Husband's Not Gay" have resigned from their leadership positions in North Star. The gay LDS support group says their continued participation may be a distraction to their mission. It goes on to say: "North Star has never advocated any specific therapy, including reparative or 'conversion' therapy; we feel that message will be made more clear if we no longer fill leadership roles."   --- (Which is funny because I found this message in one of the Northstar discussion groups:)

"Is NorthStar becoming nothing more than a reparative therapy sales center?? That's all I ever see mentioned here are Evergreen conferences, JIM events, and pitches for people like Ritch Wyer. Is there nothing for people who aren't interested in reparative therapy, or who tried it and didn't get anything out of it?"

I can't say the TV show is directly responsible for their resignations, but I'm sure their on-screen appearances played a role. A recently published op-ed in the Salt Lake Tribune may have also been a contributing factor. In any event, the TV show exposed a few extra skeletons in their closet (no pun intended) which led to unwanted media attention.

EDIT: If you have some time to kill, check out the transcripts from the public gay conversion therapy trial mentioned in the Trib article. It's a VERY interesting read.

What are my thoughts? Well, since I believe nothing good can come out of North Star, I could care less about these changes. But the younger Mormon LGBT community still trying to figure out themselves will benefit without the influence of Bennion and Dahlgren.

I still don't know why these guys and their wives appeared on "My Husband's Not Gay" in the first place. We probably will never know why. But considering all of TLC's controversies, how could they imagine that anything positive could come out of it?

I mentioned this in my original North Star post, and still feel it applies right now. Please, please, PLEASE think before you record a video or appear on a national cable network for something that could be seen as controversial. It's just not worth it. There are other ways to get your message across. (For example, start an anonymous blog!) :)

Another case in point - why does this Voices of Hope video have over 10,000 views while the majority have barely hit 500? This is why.  :(

Sunday, August 30, 2015

Game show eye candy

I really love a good game show. While I prefer game shows from before I was born, (eg Match Game from the 70's) there are some good ones on today.

Case in point - Hollywood Game Night. It's fast paced and entertaining. And I enjoy seeing celebrities outside their acting element (and even their interviewee element too.) But the icing on the cake for Hollywood Game Night - there's some good eye candy. And yes, while there are some beautiful females on the show, I'd like to talk about the men. (Duh, I'm gay.) :)

Without further ado...

Matthew Morrison

Zachary Quinto

Jerry Ferrara

David Walton

John Legend

Curtis Stone

Mario Lopez

Dax Shepard

Joe Manganiello

Brandon T. Jackson

David Giuntoli

Jason Sudeikis

Darren Criss

Zachary Levi

Etc. etc. etc. Ok, many of the above aren't necessary A-list celebrities, but they're still pretty. And there have been many other pretty men on the show, but the above is a good sample.

Watching good looking celebrities, male and female, raising money for charity, I guess is quite the turn on!

But in a recent episode, I was a little mesmerized by two celebrity contestants:

Nate Berkus and Rocco Dispirito. Again, not A-list by any means, but these two had some sort of bromance going on that made the episode extra special. Everytime the camera went to the celebrities, I would see what these two were doing. Friendly touching, smiling at each other, arm around the other, leaning on. (Sorry, no pictures except for the one above, so you'll just have to imagine it.) Dare I say - it was kinda hot.

I can't really explain why these contestants caught my attention. (And give me a reason to write a WHOLE blog post!) Rocco is straight, married to a woman, Nate is gay married to a man. Maybe the straight/gay friendship/bromance is especially exciting to me? Maybe I'm jealous and want this type of friendship with a straight guy? Maybe it's a way to denounce homophobia? Rocco cooks, Nate decorates homes and that combination is perfect?

In any event, it was a fun, eye pleasing episode.

BTW, this week's episode (Sept. 1) includes Jeff Dye and Joe Jonas. Hmm. After typing all this out, I guess I have a thing for brunettes. :)

Wednesday, August 12, 2015

Cafeteria gay Mormons have it the hardest

I've been thinking the last couple days and developed this opinion. The topics I'm about to bring up are all my thoughts, and you're free to disagree! And since I'm such a nice guy, I am capable of swaying my opinion with the right arguments.

Here goes.

When it comes to confusion, wasted time, depression, and overall difficulty, I believe that the cafeteria gay Mormons have it the hardest.

Before you throw your tomatoes, let me try and explain.

As I've already discussed the different types of gay Mormons, I feel the need to point out the different type of Mormons. The two main categories I can identify with are:

TBM - or True-Believing Mormon 
Church is 100% true
You go to church every week, participate, honor your callings, etc.
Growing up, I never really had many TBM friends. The ones on my mission, I struggled to get along with.
Oh, and I know you are a TBM if  you have a picture of a temple or some GA's quote on your Facebook timeline. (This is somewhat of a joke; I'm not trying to be rude!) :)

Cafeteria Mormons
Believe in the church to an extent, but realize there are issues with church history, etc.
Pick and choose what commandments/church rules you follow.
Personally, I've always prefered to befriend these slightly more liberal Mormons. I feel more comfortable around them.

(There are also New Order Mormons, Jack Mormons, and probably a bunch of other little subgroups.) 

Now my explanation:

I want to focus on the "wasted time" issue. In my 20's, I was always on the fence of staying with the church or leaving it to pursue a gay relationship. Early on, I wanted to remain active. I spent many years trying to be a good guy, albeit never a TBM, and thought that if I sailed by performing my callings, serving a mission, being a good example, that someday I'd wake up straight and live happily ever after with my wife and 2.5 kids. But I've never been strict on myself when it comes to keeping the Sabbath Day holy or even the Word of Wisdom. I was the first to complain about all those meetings before AND after church.

Once I figured out that I would never wake up straight, having this 'cafeteria' attitude meant that I started to believe that gay relationships were OK, even though the church was against it. TBM's hated me because I was living in sin. Gay TBM's hated me because I was a bad example.

I wasted at least 10 years because I was a cafeteria Mormon. The constant back and forth/picking and choosing makes me want to pull my hair out! If I had jumped ship early on, my life would be much different, and probably happier.

TBM's who happen to be gay see their homosexuality or "SSA" as a trial, something they'll overcome either in this life or the next. There was never a fence. They're not "wasting time" like I am, because they made the promise to follow the commandments and guidelines of the church. They've accepted the fact that they'll either remain celibate, or if things work out, they'll marry someone of the opposite sex. Yes, many are depressed and I've witnessed a lot of self-loathing, but it seems after prayer, reading the scriptures, hanging with their support groups, they seem to (temporarily) snap out of it and move on. Straight TBM's LOVE them. No matter the trial, gay TBM's always seem to overcome it once they've accepted Christ's atonement. (Something that I've never been able to do.) Do I wish I grew up a TBM? No.

So -- if you're reading this, call yourself a cafeteria Mormon, and just realized you're gay, you've got a long, confusing road ahead. If you're TBM, you probably won't be reading my blog anyway. :)

I had a bunch of stuff in my head this week, but as I type it out, it's not sending the message I had hoped. Maybe you all can help. Any thoughts? Do Cafeteria gay Mormons have it tougher?

Saturday, July 4, 2015

Well, at least he got to witness gay marriage legalized in the U.S.

As folks post their remembrances and favorite talks of President Boyd K. Packer, I'm really struggling to think of anything positive about the man.

As always, my condolences to the family of a leader who devoted his life to the church, but Packer is the reason I began to distance myself from the LDS faith.

First off, I'm one of the "dangers" he spoke of in this now infamous talk.

Then there's all the talk about my "little factory."

For non-members, in the third paragraph of his official AP obituary, there's already mention of why he wasn't a favorite.

But it wasn't until his 2010 General Conference talk that pushed me into a deep depression of trying to be both gay and Mormon. I heard these words live with about 10 close friends huddled around a TV:
"Some suppose that they were pre-set and cannot overcome what they feel are inborn tendencies toward the impure and unnatural. Not so! Why would our Heavenly Father do that to anyone? Remember he is our father." 
Yes, the talk was edited for the print version, but the damage had already been done. These talks are reviewed and edited by many before they're given over the pulpit, and I never understood how the above paragraph got the final approval.

For many members so devoted to the gospel, the above words and talks just push them even harder to overcome masturbation and homosexual thoughts and actions. And this caused some to be pushed to an even deeper form of depression and self-hate, and yes, I hate to say it - but some were even pushed to suicide. Looking back, I'm glad I wasn't as strong and devoted as some of my peers. Five years after that talk, I don't know where I'd be if I didn't slowly let go from Mormonism.

I'm just glad Packer was able to see gay marriage legalized in all 50 states. He tried so hard to denounce homosexuality, I hope he was able to see at least a few people happy after last Friday's ruling.

I'll leave a Facebook comment left on a Mormon themed news site. It was left by another gay Mormon who put Packer's death in a blunt but appropriate light. (And also inspired me to write this blog post.)
"I wish I could say I was heartbroken; President Packer was a difficult man to love. But I wish him a peaceful rest and his family, solace. 
May his angry and thorough misreadings of God's message of love travel with him to the grave." 



Sunday, June 28, 2015

June 26, 2015: The day to clean out your Facebook friends list... Oh, and the whole gay marriage thing. :)

It was a good Friday. I was so happy to witness history. Gay marriage is legal in all 50 states. (I guess we can just call it 'marriage' now.)

I think I did a record number of "Likes" over the weekend as people were proclaiming their happiness and friends (both gay and straight) changed their profile pics to the rainbow filter.

Then came the hate.

Around 95% of the rude comments I witnessed came from people claiming to be LDS. Now, I can handle a healthy argument from both sides, but the comments and snide remarks I saw were the complete opposite of Christlike. I'd love for the straight, church-going, married-in-the-temple folks to walk a day in my shoes and see if their opinions would change. (Probably not, but thought I'd throw out the opportunity.)

I then realized - I don't need these negative people in my life. It was time for a Facebook Friend Cleanse, if you will. One by one, I unfriended these people, and it felt good. I was probably going to delete these friends anyway at some point, and this weekend was the perfect time to do so. My feed is now happier and much less depressing. Facebook is a good representation of my real life, too. The more and more I separate myself from the LDS Church, the happier I've become. (Full explanation of this separation is scheduled for a future blog post.) :)

Again, I'm happy for my friends who can now marry the person they love. And I hope to do the same someday. 

And to those former FB friends - seriously - how could you NOT shed a little tear for the above couple in their 80's who waited 54 years to get married?! I mean, that's pure love right there. 

Saturday, June 13, 2015

That moment when you can't stop thinking about a movie on Netflix

I have a problem.

I am a constant multitasker, which means I always have to be doing more than one thing. When I'm at my desk at work, I'm usually listening to music or TV in the background and probably working on 2 or 3 projects at the same time. When I watch TV, I'm usually on my computer or phone. When I'm driving, I'm on the phone (not texting) and usually sipping a cold soda. When I'm reading a book, my mind wanders, and I usually give up after a few pages.

But a movie I watched last night on Netflix got my undivided attention and I'm still thinking about it the next day.

It was a slow Friday night. Work was busy all week and I was out late doing other obligations. So by Friday night, I just wanted a simple evening, alone. I treated myself to some Taco Bell (I know, so bad, but so good) and pulled up Netflix using my Chromecast. Now, in the past, I've had several Moho's suggest I watch the gay-themed movies offered, so that's where my search started. BTW, if you've searched for the gay movies on Netflix, you'll know that most look really cheesy and several only get one to two stars.

However, a movie called "The Way He Looks" got a surprising 5 stars on Netflix and a very impressive 91% on Rotten Tomatoes. Bingo. So I got comfortable and started watching. And I'm sure you're asking by now: how did this movie get my undivided attention? Well, it's in Portuguese so I had to read subtitles. :) This means no phone, no Facebook, no Twitter, no Reddit for 96 minutes. My eyes stayed on the TV the entire time, minus a 2-minute bathroom break.

But even if there were no subtitles, I still would be 100% focused - it's that good. Not to give too much away, because I think you, yes you, should see this movie. To summarize the summary from IMDB - Leo, a blind teen, is looking for independence. His best friend is a girl. But falls in love with new guy Gabriel.

When the credits rolled, I just sat there motionless. (This never happens!) I reflected on my own life. My own experiences. I thought about the impactful scenes I just saw in the movie. Movies don't usually affect me (I'm more of a series TV watcher) but this one I just can't get out of my mind. (And I have to give credit to the amazing actors. I thought Ghilherme Lobo, who plays Leo, is really blind in real life. Turns out, he's just really good at playing blind.)

I contemplated heavily after the movie because I missed out on so much of this 'gay' stuff, thanks to the darn church. As seen in the movie, I too developed feelings for guys while in high school, but all had to be squashed because, back then, it was wrong. I missed out on all this growing up and I got to live vicariously, for 96 minutes, through the actors.

Sigh.

I'm still hoping for the day I can eat Taco Bell on Friday's with someone special then snuggle up with him watching Netflix. (and maybe we'll watch a cheesy gay flick this go around.)

(And somebody PLEASE watch this movie so we can chat about it!)


Monday, May 18, 2015

As a true southpaw, swiping LEFT on the rejects is slightly offensive

I got bored this past weekend. A little too bored.

I was in the mood to do something adventurous. I've heard a lot of talk about Tinder and thought, 'eh, what the heck?'

This is a huge step. I'm only out to close family and a few friends, so attaching my face and name on a dating app was a little nerveracking.

(For those of you who don't know, Tinder is a "location-based social discovery application that facilitates communication between mutually interested users." Thank you Wikipedia.)

I downloaded the app to my tablet, connected to my Facebook profile, to which it defaulted to 'search for women,' which made me chuckle. I switched it to 'men' and fastened my seatbelt.

If you see someone you like, you swipe to the right, if you'd rather pass on someone, swipe to the left. As if lefties don't deal with enough difficulties in a right-dominated world, swiping to the left for the "thanks, but no thanks" options adds a little salt to the wound. But I digress.

This is how my extremely short evening went:

Ooh. He's cute. Swipe right.
What is he wearing?! Swipe left.
Nice body, but I don't see a face. Swipe left.
Oh my gosh. I love him. Swipe right.
Please keep your freaking tongue in your mouth. Swipe left.
Duck face on a dude is just not attractive. Swipe left.
He's my age and we have lots of similar interests?! Swipe right.
I'm like a kid in a candy store. A candy store full of pretty men.

Then about 3 minutes later...

I get a notification: "It's a match!"
Wait. What?! I just signed up for this thing. How do I already have a match?!
(Pause for explanation: I swiped right on his profile. He swiped right on mine.)
Yes, he's cute. The feelings are mutual?! I can't believe this. Oh boy, this is all happening so fast.
I can't concentrate anymore and am done swiping.
I get a notification: Match dude has sent me a message?!
What?! What do I do?!
Way too fast! I can't take the pressure!
I freeze.
I log out.
I kinda freak out, but with a smile on my face.
Is this real life?
To be continued....

Wednesday, April 15, 2015

If I were Josh Weed, I'd be pretty pissed right now

It's quite obvious, but I try my best to remain anonymous. Some of you know who I am. Some know what I look like. And some of you are my Facebook friends. But I have a list of reasons as to why I hide my true identity, and what I learned today is another good reason for staying anonymous.

On Monday, I learned through a Slate article that a bunch of LDS gay men and their wives are listed in an amicus brief collaborated by an attorney in Utah. Their stories are reasons why the Supreme Court should rule AGAINST marriage equality. The brief pulled a bunch of quotes from various Voices of Hope videos, which are public record.

The Slate article pulls a quote from the brief that I found the most impactful: "a Constitutional right to same-sex marriage can only come at the cost of marginalizing and demeaning the marriages and families" of gay men married to straight women.

Seriously?! Sheesh. Sometimes I'm embarrassed to be put in the same category at these guys - being gay and Mormon.

Well, today I learned that Josh Weed is pretty upset (just like me!). You see, he and his wife were listed in the amicus brief, therefore they must be against gay marriage. Turns out, they're not. According to a Salt Lake Tribune article, they did not give consent to be listed in the brief, nor do they believe in this point of view. Good for him. I'm glad he spoke up and kinda gave a big ole middle finger to the amicus brief. (I'm now curious as to the other couples listed in the brief. I'm sure none of them gave consent either, and I'm wondering if they're just as upset as the Weed's. I heard there was chatter on the North Star private FB page, which I do not belong to. Anyone care to fill us in?!)

Yes, I did call out Josh Weed in the past for posting a blog in favor of gay marriage, and then pulling it around General Conference, but I have gained a little more admiration for the guy in speaking out this week. I still am not a fan of gay men marrying women, so we're still not 100% friends yet, but this is an improvement. ;)

Back to the whole anonymous stuff I mentioned at the beginning of this post... I'd hate to have my name attached to something I didn't agree with. I warned gay Mormons a little over a year ago, to proceed with caution in recording a Voice of Hope video. My reasoning back then was your opinions about LGBT issues would likely change, and having a permanent video on the Internet may not be the best idea. Now you have to deal with your real name being included in random amicus briefs (or is it amici?!) that may or may not reflect your actual views.

The real me is careful as to what I post on social media, while the gay Mormon me continues to play it extra safe -- total anonymity.


Monday, March 30, 2015

Confession time! Here's what's on your mind - Round 2

Two weeks ago, I started the 2nd annual Moho Confessionals. I requested anonymous secrets from you all on what it's like to be gay and Mormon. Below are the 14 confessions I received. (Which is considerably less than the 26 I received the first go around!!) But there are a few differences this time. The secrets are deeper, more surprising, and more complicated. I've had to tell myself it's all about quality than quantity in putting together this post! I wish some of these comments WERE NOT anonymous because I have a few follow-up questions to these!

The secrets below are unedited. I'd love to hear your response.

And finally, the last confession is actually looking for some advice. Please direct any suggestions to this Moho in the comments.

This concludes my commentary. The below points are all user submitted.


  • I skipped Elder's Quorum Presidency meeting last week to get tattooed - I now have two tattoos and three body piercings ... and my wife still hasn't noticed
  • I'm not LDS.  I found some Moho blogs some years ago when I was first coming out and found it interesting to see a similar experience from another perspective.  The thing is, I'm now a well-adjusted, out gay guy and I still read these.  I don't know why I still read them.  I feel sort of bad about it, actually.  I recently made a friend who's a gay Mormon and I feel especially weird about it around him.  I'm worried he will think I'm really strange if he finds out. 
  • I think I've subconsciously antagonized every romantic relationship I've ever been in, both male and female, simply because I'm afraid I'm making the wrong choice
  • Sometimes, I wonder if I might be bi, and I am to scared to try being with a woman.
  • started texting a guy in my ward I was 93% certain that was gay. I finally screw up enough courage after 3ish months to ask the guy out on a date. Get rejected. Like a boss. kidding he was really nice about it saying how that he "admired my courage" and all but wanted to stay friends. I can't help but wonder is it because I'm not good enough, or does he just not want to date.
  • I've been married for almost 17 years - wife, 2 kids, still active in church ... and I also have a boyfriend.
  • I've tried so hard to balance being gay and LDS, but once I concluded the church isn't true, it's tons easier to separate myself from religion.
  • Gay, Mormon and wondering if I want to break any commandments before I get endowed.  Nah, probably not.
  • I'm 31 and have had body image issues since about 2nd grade. I haven't been shirtless in public for about 14 years now and haven't been to a swimming pool in as many years. I've been out and trying to date for 3 years now but have never been on a 2nd date and am still a complete virgin.
  • My wife said I was gay and thus didn't really love her.  Then she left me for another woman.
  • When I was in high school, another boy in my ward and I would feel each other up while riding in the YM Presiden'ts van on the way to our early morning monthly temple trips. We always pretended to be sleeping. The van didn't have good heating, so he always had blankets. Am I going to hell?
  • I have a weakness for hot Asian guys. I dream about Steven Yeun from the Walking Dead.
  • I did all the things that were expected of a good Mormon boy, return missionary, BYU grad, etc. Broke up with my college girlfriend when I moved away from Happy Valley (it was time to put up or shut up - so thankful that I shut up! Tho she was and still is an amazing woman) and met my first boyfriend about a year later.  Actually he was the first person I ever met that was openly gay. Many years later reconnected with my college girlfriend on Facebook.  She is now living her happily ever after with her wife.
  • Preparing to serve a mission... any advice on how not to fall in love with one's companion?

 

Sunday, March 22, 2015

Deadline extended! There's still time to confess!

At my work, we'll have contests to recognize outstanding work in various departments. However, to win the contest, you have to submit your own work. An email will go out with the deadline to submit, and a couple days before, we'll usually get another email that says "Deadline extended!" What that email really means is that few people submitted their work, and they just need more entries.

That's what is happening right now! Last week, I asked folks to anonymously submit a secret or confession on being gay and Mormon (or just gay!) I got several responses, but just not enough to make a whole blog post about them. (And well below the 26 responses I got the first go around.)

I made the original deadline today, but let's see what happens if I tack on another week! (So Sunday, March 29, 2014.)

Use the Contact Form on the right and tell me something interesting about you. (If you don't like the word "confession," just think of it as an icebreaker at a party where you ramble off a couple facts no one knows about you.) It's cathartic, fun, and I've promised to throw in a couple of my secrets as well!

Again, this is done 100% anonymously and I have no way to track you down. So before you leave this page, tell me something about you!

Here are random things you can submit (these are just ideas; do what you want!) which I'll share in a future blog post:

  • Celebrity crushes
  • Friend crushes
  • Coming out stories
  • Still in the closet stories
  • What's it REALLY like being gay and Mormon
  • Secrets from the married crowd 
  • How you REALLY feel about General Conference 
  • How the church handles LGBT issues
  • Etc, etc. 

Be brief and make this fun! Check out last week's post for a review.