Shortly after I graduated from BYU, I moved into a house with some guys I didn’t know. Some of them were welcoming, some were not. But this story isn’t about them at all. They didn’t know what was going on in my life, and I was ok with that. In fact, only one of them knows now. I went to church with them every week. As far as they could tell, I was just another normal Mormon guy, not someone who was still falling.
While I was living there, I met a guy online. He was sweet, he was kind, and I found him to be rather attractive. He and I chatted a lot, and after a couple weeks, he and I engaged in cyber sex. The second time we did so, he made a comment that changed the direction I was going. He said that it was too bad what we had just done was a sin. He wasn’t a practicing Jew. He was more Jewish by heritage than anything. but his comment, which was sincere, made me stop and realize where I was.
This kid, (I call him kid because he was several years younger than I was) got through to me when I hadn’t been able to. I had turned the volume down on my conscience through months of not going to church, and inundating myself with other things, both wholesome and not. Lots of work, but also lots of pornography, and lots of masturbation. (plus the one guy in the hotel… there’s a post about him.) I already knew what I was doing was a sin, but it took someone else telling me when I wasn’t ready for it. It took someone who was as embroiled in it as I was to reach me.
After he said that I started thinking about making things right. I started to think about going and talking to the bishop. I had talked with bishops about the homosexuality before, but I hadn’t talked with one since I had sex on study abroad, or in the hotel in Salt Lake. I knew that there was going to be more than the rather informal stuff that had happened back when I had just been watching gay porn and masturbating. I didn’t know what I would face, but I knew it had to be more serious, since the things I had done were more serious.
A few weeks later, I was got a phone call from one of the counselors in the Bishopric. He asked to meet with me for a few minutes after church. When we met, I was asked to accept a calling in the church as a Family Home Evening Coordinator. I told him that my schedule wouldn’t allow me to serve. It was a blatant lie. I had no conflicts on Monday evenings. I had just gotten to the point that I knew I couldn’t have a calling. I was finally tired of the blatant lying.
A week or so later, I called the bishop, and made an appointment to talk to him. I trusted him, but that’s another post.
My Jewish friend and I don’t have any contact anymore. He stopped returning my calls, texts and emails a while ago. He decided that he was going to go whole hog on being gay, and I think he couldn’t take that I was going in the other direction. (He and I cared for each other a lot.) I left it up to him. I told him that he could contact me anytime he wanted, but that the ball was in his court. I miss him every now and then, but I’ll always be grateful for his one comment that made a huge difference in my life.
I don’t know if I’m making a difference in yours. I hope I am. I would, of course, love to hear if I am, but if you don’t feel comfortable contacting me, and would rather just read, that’s ok too.