As I was growing up, there was a little neighbor boy named Bryce (I've changed his name) who lived near us who would sometimes come over to our house wearing his mother's heels, or his older sister's dress, or long sparkly gloves. He was very open about his desire to be a girl, and he unabashedly talked about growing up to be lady. He may have even talked about kissing boys. I really didn't give it much thought, but I now wonder how his staunchly Mormon parents felt about it, and at what point did they say that enough was enough?
I am several years older than Bryce is, so soon after that I grew up and moved out. I didn't hear anything else about him or his family until a couple of years ago my sister told me that he was gay and that at some point he had been living a "gay lifestyle" but then after a while his family pulled him back into mainstream Mormonism, he repented, went on a mission, goes to BYU, and is now happily married. To a woman.
I've read Bryce's blog. He loves show tunes and a few other stereotypically gay things. He still seems feminine in many ways. He posts about his disdain for people like Clay Aiken and Ricky Martin who, in his opinion, say they are gay just because nowadays it is "the cool thing to do." He had a lot of strong words regarding the whole "Yes on 8" debacle. He also talks a lot about his love for his family, his wife, and the teachings of the Mormon church.
I want Bryce to be happy. I can understand how easy it could have been for him to try to turn off a part of himself in hopes of a normal, more accepted life, to want to follow the teachings of the church, and the belief system of his very strong, very close-knit family. It is no small task what he has chosen to do. I know. I tried. No matter what I did I could not get that part of me to be quiet. Some say that part of me was just temptation. Some say that everyone has their demons, whether it be drugs or alcohol, gambling, overspending, overeating, pornography, or any number of other vices, that they must combat on a daily basis. Some say that those are just their temptations that they must resist. Some say that homosexual desires are just another set of vices that must be battled, and overcome.
There are also other "ex-gays" out there who decry homosexuality and have chosen to become straight. I wonder how that is working out for them. That sounds sarcastic. But I would really like to know, how many of them have managed to live lives of fulfillment, without regret, and how many are now ex-ex-gays?