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Saturday, October 18, 2014

The "Gay" Box in a Room Full of Other Boxes

Why do we as humans categorize each other into different groups? It has always fascinated me that some people have to refer to others by their race, religion, sexual orientation, political views, etc. Why is that? In high school I got put into the "gay" box, just like some people get put into the "black" box,  "democrat" box, "wheelchair" box, and many others? Why is it so offensive sometimes? I feel, the reason it is offensive or belittling is because it shouldn't matter. Who cares if someone is Black, Mexican, or Asian? Who cares if someone is gay, straight, asexual, bi-sexual, transgender, or any other? That is so ludicrous. Saying any of these things or categorizing anyone by these groups sounds just as ridiculous as saying someone is "human". I was hurt and offended in high school because I wasn't completely gay. If anything, I considered myself more bisexual and I hadn't even talked to people about my attractions. People were simply just putting me into a group because they didn't know how to handle my differences. Some guys were jealous of all the girlfriends I had around me and wondered why the heck my relationships with the girls was so much better than theirs. Others simply just saw a guy with a bunch of girls and automatically decided that was grounds for spreading obnoxious rumors about me liking another guy along with other rumors.

What is it that makes us do this? I am still trying to figure it out.

Since high school, I have been able to better find myself and decide that I am happy with the decision I have made. I want a wife, and I want kids. I am so grateful for the attraction that I do have for girls.

In the past, I have tried to be in relationships with girls and I wanted a girlfriend so bad! (I still do) I want what you see in the Romance movies. I have always longed to be able to hold a girl in my arms and tell her how beautiful she is. I want to look someone in the eyes and see into their soul. I want that deep romance with her where you can be a best friend and love them romantically at the same time. I always get a warm feeling in my gut while watching those movies because that is what I want. When I started having feelings for different girls throughout my life however, I would always shut down. I would not try to pursue anything because I didn't want to have to bring up the topic of my attractions for guys, or other issues I have struggled with throughout my life. The thought of the future freaked me out. At the time I just assumed that I was going to keep my attractions to other guys all  to myself and then somehow find a way to tell my future girlfriend that I am also attracted to guys. How the heck was I supposed to be content with life while I had that constant stressful thought in the back of my mind? I did not want to start a relationship and cover up my attraction for guys to just through a bombshell at her later when the time was "right". Nobody deserves that. What kind of relationship would that be?

The decision to open up to you all about my same sex attractions (SSA) was not made over night. When I look back on life and the things that lead up to this, I know that the Lord was just preparing me for a work that needed to be done. A message that needed to be shared. That is the message of hope. In the LDS faith there is sadly a lot of harsh words expressed by fellow church goers. A lot of people let this effect them because they feel as though it is the viewpoint of the church. That couldn't be further from the truth. The LDS church teachings and church culture are two very different things. For some reason there are people in the church who see their closed minded views and prejudices as gospel. The LDS church may not practice or approve of the gay life style, or the consumption of various substances. We also do not participate in gambling or premarital sex. We can however, be friends with people who we chose to be friends with. If our friends encourage us to be the best we can be then we are encouraged to seek those friendships. If I have a friend who gambles or partakes of different substances, can they encourage me to be the best me? Yes. They can. You can set your limits with anyone you are friends with. We are taught to not judge, and to love as Christ loves. If the friendship is strong enough, then the friend will care enough about it to not break that trust. Some people have forgotten about this teaching and they think that if you have a friend who is making bad life decisions then you should not hang around them. How twisted does that sound? Most of the time that is when your friend needs someone the most. Obviously, if they are trying to pressure you into something you don't believe in then that is a different story entirely. True friends will not try and pressure each other though.

I feel like this is blog entry is beginning to turn into a rant, so I will end it before it gets too jumbled up. The sum of this post however is,
1. I am not gay. I am attracted to both men and women and I chose to live an LDS lifestyle. (yes. it is possible)
2.Stop lumping people into boxes! We are all simply just human.
3. The decision to open up to everybody was tough but very necessary.
4. Mormon teachings, and Mormon culture are two very very different things.
5. True friends are amazing no matter what they do in their personal lives.

I hope we are all able to eventually be able to look past our personal prejudices and just see each other as the brothers and sisters that we are. I have gained such an amazing love for everyone since coming out with this blog. You are all truly amazing. No matter the gender of your significant other, the religion you practice, the God you believe in, or the color that you are, you are all human to me! <3

Until next time,

-Anxious Soul