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! :)

1 comment:

  1. Can I recommend gay sports? I joined a rock climbing group last year and it completely changed my social life. Everyone was so friendly, welcome, and genuine and we get to do just casual hang out stuff (this Friday some guys are going to do karaoke). I know they are particularly common in my area, but there are often a range of LGBT sports and arts groups in each city.