Monday, June 2, 2014

Spent saturday at the northstar conference for gay mormons


or mormons with ssa, whatever you wanna call it.

http://www.deseretnews.com/article/865604271/Conference-seeks-to-help-Mormons-with-same-sex-attraction-who-want-to-keep-the-faith.html?pg=all#UoQibPbmjlUuTEkg.01

Now days it almost seems like the difference between Mormon and latter-day saint.

anyway. It was really good. The feeling of community was great. Being around people who understand you, who also share similar experiences and goals was great.

Tom Christofferson, D.Todd"s bro, was there on a panel. He's in a same sex relationship, but has been going to church. His bishop was on the same panel and talked about how they welcomed him, made him feel comfortable. and did all they could within the framework of the gospel to include him, and his partner. I do not intend to have a partner, but it was neat to see them take Tom where he is at, and try to minister to him, help him become more like Christ, instead of rejecting him.

Follow that up with sunday. I have a meeting with a counselor in the bishopric. The topic turns to the conference, and he's like "well did they have classes about dating", "did they help you want to date more" "well then what did you learn' his whole thing was that it needs to help gay mormons learn how to date girls.... Does the think i don't' know the steps of dating. I've pretended to be a normal straight mormon for years. I can go through the steps. I just don't have any interest in it.

I told him the church's own materials say that marriage should not be used at a therapeutic step for same sex attraction, and all he said was "well ty mansfield got married" The idea that the only support and help members of the church with ssa need is to learn how to date women better was really annoying. such contrast to how the weekend had been.

anyway, that's my report. i loved the conference. Before we minister to peopel we need to be their friends, adn before we are their friends we ourselves need to have a solid connection with God.

Friday, May 23, 2014

X men review and thoughts.

I really liked this movie last night.   Having Patrick Stewart and Ian McKlellan in the movie was great.  They are the Xmen to me.  The story was cool, and it was FULL of small details that fans of the series will love.  I love the moral questions in Xmen, I love the cinematography.  Some really cool scenes, including the one with quicksilver in the kitchen.  and breaking glass was used a few times, to great effect.

It was interesting to see Xavier and Beast, who are good people, just hiding out.  not using their powers for good.  Just wallowing in their own pain.  Beast was an enabler of Xaviers wallowing in sorry.  he may be willing to do good, but is a follower, not a leader in any respect.  Lost respect for his character, but then again he is a politician.

Magneto as always will do anything that he sees as needful, and while his motivation may be a better world for mutants, his actions are often horrific. 

The sentinels are pretty cool.  the deaths of mutants in the future are powerful, and while graphic, not celebrated, but full of sorrow.

Logically i felt things made sense, within the rules of the universe, and

final scene spoiler, don't read this



X-Men-Days-Of-Future-Past-10.jpg


the final scene with logan at the school for gifted youngsters was really powerful.  i don't know how the got all the characters back for rouge, jean grey, beast and cyclops.  I don't know why it was such a good pay off for me, but it was.  to see these awesome characters back, who i thought were lost was really cool. and to see how touched logan was by it was cool.  and it was fun to see cyclops be the pretty boy jerk he is, and see wolverine have so much more control over his temper than he used to.   IN fact seeing the growth of Logan has been pretty cool.  Seeing the implicit trust he and Xavier have in each other.  when back in the original trilogy he was a loner, an outsider, someone who didn't need anyone.

i'm not a huge fan of swearing, but for some reason, the "f" word in this, as well as in First class, was delivered to great comedic effect.  Yeah, i'm a bad person, but it seemed to fit well. 

oh yeah.  some nudity of hugh jackman from the rear.  that, along with the single F word, and the graphic deaths of mutants in the future are the things i think you need to consider if you are wondering about taking small children. obviously everyone has their own levels of what they are comfortable/desensitized too.  but aside from those the movie was content wise like the new spider man.

oh yeah. there is mystic, who is a naked women with blue body paint covering vital organs....i almost forgot i guess because she had no power over me, but she could affect some of you non-mutants.

 -----

What i really love about Xmen is the gay anology.   And the brotherhood all mutants feel even though many go about it in different ways.

Professor X and Magneto are sometimes enemies, but always connected.  They want the best for the mutant race.  They have strong disagreements, but in the end, they are brothers.

One thing i've felt for a while, and felt strongly last night, was how connected we really are as dudes, who like dude or chicks for chicks.  We have disagreements on how to deal with it.  But we all know what it's like to be different, to come out to ourselves.  to realize the future we were raised to hope fore, is probably not ours.   To fear rejection by our parents, God, Friends, and even ourselves.  And to finally find a community with people like us.  People who  don't care that we like dudes, cause they do too.  To have some old friends leave us, to have some old friends be our support.  


and we do have some differences for sure.  And i'm not gonna say one side is Professor X and teh other Magneto, cause it doesn't matter.  What i want for myself and our family of gays, is healthier lives, less self hate, less suicide, and more love, from ourselves adn the world. 

I recently saw a video documenting the problem homeless gay youth face in Los Angeles

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1t3vfQIJ-zk

Seriously those kids need love and support, and help out of that hellish situation.  Celibacy may be my path, but i think everyone would agree that a stable same sex relationship is much better than a street life of drugs, prostitution and rape.  And the very idea that it's just the wages of sin is ridiculous.

I just think of all the seperation i sometimes feel between teh different communities.  And i understand why.  there is certainly pain in choosing our path in the gay world.  But I for one am going to work on helping people where they are.  Helping them find healthy ways to live in their chosen path.  And recognizing the greatness inherent in all of us.  No matter what moniker or creed or group we choose.

Lets be united, in what we can be.  And let our differences shape our personal lives, but not pull us apart.

As Magneto lay dieing, in the future, his last words he spoke to Professor X, first his friend, then his enemy, and at the end, his brother, he lamented.   "All those years wasted fighting each other, Charles." 

Wednesday, March 26, 2014

You are Good, You are Whole, You are Loved.

To the RM sitting in institute fearful of being found out

To the deacon who’s mocked, laughed and spat upon

And the old man, who is shaking with doubt

You are not alone, you are not condemned

You aren’t some little spawn sent from hell

You a child of God and a friend of mine

You are good, you are whole, you are loved.



Your mom may not quite understand why

The girls don’t quite catch your eye

Your old man, may care, but he just cannot know

What the hell you see in a guy

Your brothers may mock and the jocks, they may punch,

And you may get stuffed down in a can

But my brother there are those who’ll help you out

You are good, you are whole, you are loved



“gay’ “fag’ damn queer” are the knives they used

The scars ran long and ran deep.

The walls you put up to keep the voices out

Now keep out the friends that you seek

So my son, my brother, or even my dad,

Come out from your fortress closet

While voices will mock let one voice drown them out

You are good you are whole you are loved. 

Wednesday, February 26, 2014

Looking Back



So at work i found an old suicide note my email had saved a draft of. It was from May of last year. Really brought me back to last year, a time when i was lonely, depressed, and unsure if I would make it. I had been searching for any path that led to happiness. Trying different groups of people, straining for anything to find relief.


When i wrote this i wasn't sure i'd make it out of the funk i was in.  I didn't have an immediate plan, but i had a gun, so it didn't take much planning. 

Here it is

Whatever happens, it is my fault, my responsibility, not yours I'm so sorry. I am not ignorant of the pain this has caused you, and will probably cause you forever. And so i'm sorry. Please know, taht there is nothing you could have done. The inner turmoil i feel, really isn't resolvable. I don't claim that this is what God wants. He would want me to live. But i fail, at this and everything else. please know that no longer will i lie in bed shaking with self hatred. no more will the pressure of an uncertain future face me. I know my future know. I am so sorry. I love each and everyone of you. That is what has kept me alive for this long. I wish i could just dissappear so you would not have to deal with this.
I don't feel worthy to give advice, as one who has failed his trials on earth. But know i love you. So much, and if somehow God will permit me to see how your lives grow, i will watch, and find joy, in your lifes.
Your brother, son friend, and uncle.


So the last few months i have been going through a very similar depression.  It's been dark, painful, heavy, but i haven't let it be isolating.  

Last memorial day, i went to Journey into Manhood.  And while it is not a perfect program, it was a pivot point for me in my life.  I was on an emotional high for 4 weeks after, but i also learned to connect with people better.  I made great friends and from those friends i've made even more.  

Which brings me to the point of this post...

My now former therapist talked to me about not associating with other gay mormons.  He is not a fan of NorthStar,  or anything else.  I was in a funk wondering if maybe he and my parents were right.  That all these connections made me feel worse, focus too much on my SSA and were in general bad for me.

I was wondering if i needed to go back to not talking about it.  to not associating with others who deal ith it.  Wondering if that would make me happy.

Before i went to my most recent visit with him, i prayed to God to show if this path was good or not.  That night, i had the chance to come out to someone from my home town and give and get support.  I posted links to several coming out posts that helped people.  It was good enough for me to see the benefit of having a community of saints who know what i'm going through and can support me.

Tonight, with depression about as bad as it's been, i couldn't find anyone to hang out with.  I prayed to God to send someone.  A good friend, called, we had cookies and talked about stuff.  I am so grateful for it.  For him.

I guess the point of it all, is I still have crappy depression to deal with.  I still have hard times, but It is my associations with others that gives me strength and the will to move on.  Last May i didn't have people to lean on.  Now i do, and that makes the purgatory of depression, passable.  Thank you God.  Thank you Friends

Tuesday, February 25, 2014

Close to home

Came out to red spud today. 

I posted a link from a gay mormon on my FB wall, the second time in a week.  And he chatted me on FB

Wanted to talk about it.  We did for a while.  pretty soon i came out to him.  So there is another hometown person who knows.   Was good. He wanted to know how to help others.  Thought iwas stable!  haha.

But it was good to be out.  he wanted to refer someone to me. someone from the hometown 

It is good. 

and it kinda answered the question on my mind.  Do i need to be less open about this.  is my openness a bad thing.

Therapist thought so.  I imagine parents think so.

But as i talked to spud, i remembered all the support i'd received from coming out.  How hard it was not to be out.  and how much i was grateful for north star and JiM and all the other support groups and just fine individuals i know.  

Being out has been good.  yeah i deal with depression, yeah i have hard times, but it's not because i've chosen to receive support from others.  the support has made life easier;

Tuesday, February 11, 2014

John and Jack

Consider if you will two very different high school experiences.


John lay on his bed.  Alone.  The twilight light seeping in the window cast a grey pall over the room.  The tension in his chest wanted to rip the sternum apart. 

Why!  Why.  Why do I feel this way.  Why.  I should be normal.  I should be happy.  I should have people I can call, that I can tell about this.  I don’t want to exist.  I don’t want to be here.  I hate it.  F--k it all.  I hate it.  It’s pointless.  I’ll text Shawn.  See how that goes.  Maybe he wants to do something.  Eff it. 

The room was dark, but full of  hidden excitement.  Any moment Jack would walk in the door.    Streamers adorned the ceiling waiting to be illuminated by the light as soon as Jack walked in the door.  Spencer stood by the stereo.  Ready to blast the music.  Katie, hid just out of sight in the study, ready to give him the best birthday kiss any boy had ever experienced.  Troy kept sneaking Doritos, the crunching chips the only noise in the living room. 

All told 14 people waited in the darkness.  Waited to give Jack the happiest birthday they could muster.  Any minute he’d be here.  Any minute the party would commence.

John didn’t cry.  He stared at the text screen.  Someone, anyone would want to hang out .   What was the point anyway?  Hang out for a few minutes.  A couple hours of fun, then back to loneliness.  Back to the room.  Back to the tempest in his mind. Whirling, beating violent thoughts into his soul.  What had he done to give place to his enemy in his head.  Why was it there.   Faggot, queer, F--king loser. It repeated over and over.  Food, friends, making out, all offered temporary reprieve.  But why, at what point.  Where was the meaning. 

Still no response. 

John threw the phone against the wall.  The screen might have cracked.  Oh well.  Fuck it all.

In the corner rested a gun.  A 12 gauge Mossberg.  How many times had John thought of it.  How many times had he wondered if it would provide peace.  He knew the place to put it.  His arms were just long enough to hold it in place. 

Any moment the party would start.  Three more had shown up unexpectedly, but they were welcome.  The dip was so tempting.  The cookies so exciting.  Troy, quietly worked on opening the Oreos.

A car drove up.

Silence.  The suspense was great.  All eyes on the door.  Waiting to love their friend.

But before the door opened, a strange noise came from upstairs.  A sudden noise.  Like a firecracker.

-----

John “Jack” Beckstrand.  18 died Friday night. 

Student Body President, Captain of the football team, brother, son, friend.  He was always happy.  Willing to crack a joke to lighten the mood.  He was An eagle scout,  and sometimes flirted with the Honor Roll. 

He was suddenly taken from us.  While we do not know why, we know he is in the loving embrace of the Savior.  Services will be at the Old Tabernacle Wednesday at noon.  In lue of flowers the family has asked that a donation be made to the United Way. 

Wednesday, January 8, 2014

Went to the temple last night

Was really cool.  We got put in an American Sign Language session.

Won't go into specifics but was really neat at one point to see them pray in sign language.  Couldn't understand what was being said, but the Spirit was strong.

It was the old video, so i still haven't seen the new one yet.  Excited to finally see it next time*


The temple is good.  I've been going through a really hard time lately.  It helped me get back on track.


Went with a good friend.  That was fun.

You know, SSA is not the only thing that can make life hard.  Being deaf, Losing loved ones, many different things.  Just gotta keep on keeping on. 


*unless they put me in a Spanish session.