Monday, January 21, 2013
I spent the holiday weekend with my buddy Brian who doesn't know that I'm gay. We went snowmobiling, watched movies, and ate a ton of junk food.
Brian had gotten two new roommates this semester and they spent the weekend with us having fun and (unfortunately) avoiding homework.
One of the roommates Josh had recently returned home from his mission. The entire time I was there Josh got up early and went to bed early (missionary schedule). He would stay for hours on campus doing homework. He spent his Saturday at the temple. In general he seemed pretty quiet and Peter Priesthoodie.
Sunday night Brian was annoying the hell out of me. He's hyper and immature. I love the kid, but he doesn't know how to take things seriously when he needs to. I needed to do a huge amount of homework, so I went into Josh's room and worked on homework while he was writing in his journal.
At first we exchanged meaningless conversation about music, and then things took a turn.
I told him that "I like you Josh, you're a good kid."
His response "I like you too GMSW. You're the type of friend I need to surround myself with. You know how to take things seriously, you're a hard worker. You're upfront with people. You are the type of friend that people need, not necessarily the type that they want all the time. You will tell them straight up if they should or shouldn't be doing something."
It was very touching of him to say.
He talked a bit about his family life and things that he had gone through, repented of and things that he still struggled with.
Then it happened. I just felt compelled by the spirit to tell him I was gay. It was eating at me. I told him I felt I needed to tell him something... which was weird because I had known him for only 3 days. I kept trying to muster up the courage to say it, but I couldn't. I would start and my throat would get caught.
He made the suggestion that he guess.
Josh: "Law of chastity?"
Me: I shook my head.
Josh: "Does it have to do with same gender attraction?"
Me: (eyes wide and slightly terrified, my heart jumping out of my chest) "Why would you say that?"
Josh: "Because you're not the only one here who has dealt with it before. I see the pain in your eyes."
I would describe my surprise as getting hit in the head with a hammer. What the hell? This guy has a girl he plans on marrying in the fall. Is he saying what I think he's saying?
He told me that some of the issues he had to clean up before his mission were homosexual ones. He told me that he had those inclinations before and the pornography and masturbation had amplified them.
When he cleaning up for his mission, he told himself he was going to get past it and that he wanted a relationship with a woman. And somehow he did it. He told me he no longer has any attractions towards men (which I find hard to believe, in all honesty I think he is in denial).
I told him about about my past, my mistakes, and my needs as being a gay man and wanting to stay in the church.
He kept making comments like "Don't give up hope" "I'm living proof that you can beat this".
It rubbed me the wrong way and I told him that. I told him that I'm not having a hard time right now, which is why I found it funny that I had been compelled by the Spirit to tell him. I also told him that I have no idea how he "beat" it. But for me, it is more deep rooted and a day to day struggle. The pain, the sorrow is a constant ache. I've tried relationships with girls and they do nothing for me. I don't have this attraction or connection with girls and honestly I don't have a desire to have one right now.
Things became silent and I asked him what he was thinking.
What he said next sucked:
"What's happened here stays here. What has been talked about is not going to be common thing or be brought up. I don't believe in coincidences, but also, I can't be a part of a support group for you."
Talk about punch to the gut. I wasn't asking Josh to be a support group for me or anything like that. I didn't share that with him in hopes of that. I shared it with him because I felt I should, I didn't know why. It felt like he was saying he wanted to pretend this conversation never happened, that he never wanted to talk about it again, and that he didn't want anything to do with me.
So in a cloud of hurt and tears, I gathered my things and left Brian's apartment at 1:00 in the morning making excused about having a family emergency.
Can't turn back now I'm haunted.