Thursday, January 10, 2013
A Good Middle Ground
You know how you know how your friendship is unhealthy? There is constant drama, contention. Everyone else in your life does't approve. You're not happy, though you may claim to be. You succumb to peer pressure and go against things that you've been taught and believe your entire life.
There is often times in the gay community of the Church the mistaken idea that just because you're gay and someone else is gay, you have to be friends. That is not the case. More often than not, being gay may be the only thing you have in common. You will probably have different interests, different feelings about the Church, and different life paths.
On the flip side of that, there are a lot of people who are not gay who don't find it a good idea to be gay and hang out with other gay people. My own mother even once compared it to putting an alcoholic in a bar (you can imagine my reaction).
What people don't realize is without those HEALTHY, honest, emotional connections with other guys who understand what we're going through, our inclinations to act out intensify. That's why it's important to have gay friends but why it's also important for them to not just be your friend because they're gay. You may both be gay, but that is not why you're both friends.
I've said it many times before and I'll say it again; I have the most amazing best friend. We became best friends not because we are both gay, but that we share other interests in common, we really care about each other. Our friendship I am so proud of and would define as healthy because he makes me want to be a better person. He makes me want to continue to keep my covenants and continue to move forward. He often makes me realize that there is hope for me in this life with his example.
The thing that stuck out to me so much today was one of my New Year's goals. It was to improve with my issue of masturbation and pornography. Since New Years I haven't looked at porn or jacked off once. That's a big deal for me. It's not always easy but I've been able to maintain it. I reflected on my life and wondered why. Then it hit me: my best friend. He was what made the difference. He is meeting the needs that I have as a gay mormon man. He talks to me, shows interest, charity, compassion, he's a real friend. It sounds so corny but I know that it's true! This friendship is healthy and moving me in the direction that I want to go in!
My heart is full.