Reality Television, Jane, & Panic Attacks

I changed my anxiety/depression medicine from Prozac to Lexapro back in December while I was home for Christmas break. I've been on Prozac since I was 19 and it had been working up till about 6 months ago (May/June of last year). I noticed I was struggling to concentrate and my anxiety seemed to be coming back. My doctor cited the reason from my body adapting to the Prozac and so it was time to switch up medications. He put me on Lexapro and for the first little while it seemed to work. Though for the past couple of weeks, it seems to have made my symptoms worse and upon looking up the label, that is an adverse reaction to the medicine and signals a reason to stop using it.

I took this semester off to give my body and mind a break from the grind but I've been having daily anxiety issues. I've had an anxiety attack each time I've gone to the Plasma Center for the past two weeks. I had one a couple days ago when I was laying on my bed that left me unable to breathe or stand up. At work I'll be sitting at my desk and just start having an attack, and that's happened on a daily basis. Tuesday as I was waiting in the hall before a meeting, I had another anxiety attack. I had to sit down on the floor, put my head between my knees and focus on my breathing.

I haven't had anxiety attacks this severe or frequent since I was a freshmen fresh out of High School. I'm going to be headed back to the doctor to try and figure out a new medicine since the one right now is messing with my chemical balances in my brain.

Yesterday was awesome because I finally heard back from Jane. I received an email from her yesterday morning. Then my roommate came into my room and said "I got a letter from your girl!" You can bet that I ripped that sucker right open! She's doing good. Likes her companions for the most part. She took my advice about the food and not taking Tylenol PM on her first night there. It was so good to hear from her and guess what... she signed it with "Love" :).

So random awesome news... I was contacted by a producer from New York who's been reading my blog. He would like for me to take part in a reality television show he is putting together. He knows very well the the trial of reconciling faith and feelings as he comes from a Christian family and he is gay himself. This project is very dear to his heart. He wants to put together a cast composed of guys that are Mormon and gay. We set up a Skype conference call. He told me he was intrigued by me and my story. He said he wanted a guy like me and then changed it to "not a guy like you, I want you." He wants a cast that is dealing with being gay in different ways so some may choose to stay in the Church while others aren't remaining faithful. So the producer is super awesome and been really upfront with me. He told me to pray about whether or not I should do it.

Which is where I am now. Being on this show means that I would unmask myself as gay on National Television. I would of course tell my close friends and the rest of my family first. I would have to be ready for the criticism I well no doubt receive. I will have to be able to deal with myself becoming a type of "celebrity" and the invasion of privacy that entails. At the same time though, it would be a good chance to bring this conversation to the national stage with some sort of normalcy to it. People will be able to see a normal Mormon dude working through it. I would also be able to help pay for Med School with the salary that I would receive.

I haven't made a definite decision yet. There's still more conference calls to be had and prayers to be said. I plan on getting a blessing to help me make my decision.



  1. Hey GMSW.

    I've read your blog for awhile and enjoy your stories. But I finally feel it's time to chime in.

    I'm writing to suggest that you not get your hopes up for the reality show. I worry though that since you've thought about the salary and how it would pay for Med School, you really are actively thinking about going forward.

    Tons of reality shows are brainstormed, written, marketed, pilot shot, but very, very few actually get signed. Please don't waste your time.

    Regarding the producer who contacted you, I'm sure the "project is very dear to his heart." The same can be said for the producers of Far Between and Voices of Hope. But who ends up being the audience? Other gay Mormons? A few of their friends and family? Such a minuscule part of the population. (Look at the YouTube views for the testimonials - not very impressive.) The same would hold true for this reality show. It would be an extremely tough sell, nearly impossible, to get a network to agree to this type of show.

    The ONLY way I see this working, is if you got 5 or 6 extremely active LDS members and film them testing the waters in the "gay lifestyle." MAYBE a network like Logo would be interested. (And this thought only came to mind because of the popularity of Breaking Amish.)

    I don't work in the entertainment industry, but my media background has helped me come to these conclusions.

    If you want to be a celebrity, make a video yourself and hope it goes viral. That's my advice.

    So please don't get your hopes up! I just don't see this working. I'd be happy to email you more my thoughts on this.


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