Nearly 365 days ago, I branded 2016 as "the year of being adventurous and trying new things." And in those 12 months, I'd say I succeeded.
I don't want to bore you with all the little details, but I will point out 2 things that made 2016 adventurous:
1. I jumped on the OKCupid bandwagon and went on my first official date with a guy. (Followed by more dates with other guys!)
2. I publically came out as an ex-Mormon/non-believer.
2016 was a great year.
And on that note, I'm labeling 2017 as the 'year of moving on.'
Since I don't consider myself Mormon anymore, I need to completely separate myself from the religion and, well, move on.
I struggled a couple months ago, having the desire to date/hang out with gay Mormons. These Mohos are all great people, but still held on to some belief in the church. This caused confusion and conflict.
I need to move away from the 'gay Mormon' moniker and just be known as 'gay.' (And for those that hate labels - then I'm a 'person.') :-)
The good thing is I'm doing better now than 6 months ago when I came out as an ex-Mormon:
- I've spent less time perusing the Mormons Building Bridges Facebook page, and even less time reading the heartbreaking stories in the North Star Google group. If news was happening in the Moho world, I probably wouldn't know about it.
- It's been a challenge, but I've spent (a little) less time on the ex-Mormon Reddit page.
- I wrote (in my head) various responses to Gay Mormon Guy's recent blog posts, but decided it's not worth the effort. (It would just return to the conflict & confusion I mentioned earlier.)
- I've stopped obsessing in the lives of those who are gay and stay faithful to the church. I used to get upset when a gay Mormon would announce his engagement to a woman. I used to get upset when a gay guy chose the church over dating dudes. Now, to be honest, I don't care anymore. The church and the "plan of salvation" always trumps worldly gay desires for these guys, so trying to talk someone out of the church would be wasted breath.
- I've stopped stalking this Instagram page to see if he's changed his mind from all the stuff he said here.
- I do, however, continue to stalk LDS journalist Hunter Schwartz because he's yummy.
- I did not set foot in an LDS church building in 2016, and hope to do the same in 2017.
- When people ask about my religion, I now use the line "I was raised Mormon," instead of "I am Mormon." (This was tough to do at first, but I'm slowly feeling more comfortable to say this.)
- For some guilty pleasure reading about sexuality, I'm now hooked on books by Jay Bell, which have nothing to do with Mormonism or religion - just some good ole gay fiction.
Now, over the years I've met some amazing gay Mormons/ex-Mormons through this blog or in other forums. And I will continue to communicate with these people both digitally and in-person (You know who you are!) These folks are a major part of my life and a definite exception from my "moving on" goal.
But for the most part, I hope to get Mormonism out of my life completely. It caused so much heartache and anger in the first 30 years of my life, why should I continue to give it any recognition? I learned very quickly the line "Can leave the church, but can't leave it alone" is very accurate.
But in 2017, I've decided to leave it alone.