I was speaking with a new-but-true friend Mitch Mayne tonight. He's kind of become established for his controversial (to some) but awesome calling in his ward. (His blog is: http://www.mitchmayne.blogspot.com/ )
The following is an expansion on an email I wrote to him, where in our usual banter were discussing some of the change therapy issues within our gay-moho-ssa Mormon community.
Before I say this, I will say that I love the organizations which are working with members of our community in healthy ways. I am indebted to groups like Evergreen and David Pruden for first teaching me that I can remain in the church with my attractions. I don't go to the Conferences anymore because I feel like I don't continue to gain anything. They helped me in a time when I needed it, and I support them in their purposes.
I think some people think there's something 'wrong with us.' Like, we're something which needs correction because there is something obviously and fundamentally different with us which needs fixing.
I don't think that I liked very much spending years of my life thinking there was something wrong witg me... I used to describe myself as a broken vase. Just have to hide the crack against the wall---no one will notice it. Fill the broken vase with pretty silk flowers, no one will notice the chips.
After years of soul searching, learning, talking with friends, I realize I am not broken. I realize that I have so much to offer the world--I am a good listener. Post-it Boy likes offering advice to friends who need a listening ear. My cooking skills are rather good and I love to bring cookies, cupcakes, muffins, and such with me to share with my coworkers. Some say my cubicle is a mini-bakery. I am a good friend. A dang good brother. And I'm going to be one HECK of a father someday to some lucky children. (And I will be, in turn, very lucky for those children who will be gifted to me.) I am not a broken vase---just a vase. Beautiful and simple in itself. No corrections necessary. I don't need to have my crack against the wall.
That last line sounded better in my head than in actual text.
Maybe instead of fixing our sexuality, we need to fix those areas which aren't working: Are you depressed? Lonely? Angry? Suicidal? THOSE things need correction. Our sexual attractions make us partially who we are in addition to a myriad of other wonderful, beautiful things.
I think a lot of gay men in the church do think they're broken vases which need correcting. Its not fun thinking there's something which has to be fixed or changed. But maybe the non-gay world wants to find a way for us to be fixed and changed so we're "normal"... Then, no more cracked vases. Easy as pie.