Tuesday, August 28, 2012

Nature vs Nurture

What kind of self-respecting, gay, Mormon blogger waits this long to pontificate about the age-old question:  Why do I like penises despite having one of my own when I am supposed to be drawn to their counterparts?  Wow, that sounded really gay.  Well, if you haven't figured it out by now, I am that kind of gay.

Was I born this way? Maybe.  Did I make a conscious decision to be attracted to men?  Hell No.  Did I experience some things that well-meaning-but-oh-so-presumptuous mental health professionals might point a finger at? Yes.

I did some pretty "gay" extra-curricular activities growing up (not always of my own choosing), so that's probably why I am gay, right? :)

  • I was in a singing group called Kids Konnection, or something like that, at a young age.  The girls wore pink and the boys wore purple tie-died shirts with sparkly letters and I think there was a show choir aspect to it.  If that's not enough to make someone gay I don't know what is!  I sang a lot growing up and still love to sing to the radio.
  • I was fascinated by the piano, ended up taking lessons, really hated my first teacher (who made me cry on multiple occasions), eventually got a new teacher, did not practice very much, but continued to take lessons for years, and would love to compose my own music some day.
  • I played the gayest "real sport" that you can play in America: soccer.  I started at a pretty young age and my mom did not want me playing other sports.
I was involved in some early male-male sexualization.  I was 6 or 7 at the time when a neighbor boy (probably only a year or two older than me) introduced me to my genitals in new ways:
  • He taught me and a couple other boys how to stimulate ourselves and measure our erections.  He created a sort of competition:  You guessed it - who has the longest penis?
  • He later taught us to put our dangling participles in each others mouths as a way to derive pleasure.  We were not sexually mature but I remember the practice creating an urgency to urinate.
  • This all happened in our backyard, behind an old wooden gate that had been leaned against the block fence that surrounded our yard.  I know that at least two of the other boys involved have since had some uncommon sexual manifestations: one seeking early heterosexual encounters and one with homosexual orientation.
I reached puberty pretty early, and was fascinated by the male body from then on.
  • There was a guy in 6th grade that I really wanted to be close to.  We talked and were friendly and joked together from time to time.  But there was something different about him, something I wanted to have or to be.  He was athletic, handsome, and funny.
  • I am not sure how old I was when it started, but I remember keeping the cardboard inserts of the boy models from the new packages of underwear I got periodically.  I must have had some sense that this was not normal because I would hide them at the bottom of my drawer.  I really liked those perfect bodies - I wanted mine to look like that and I wanted to be close to boys like that.
  • In junior high school there was a guy in my gym class who had the most chiseled body I had ever seen.  Our lockers were at opposite corners of the aisle that was assigned to our class, but at least once per class I would try to catch a glimpse of his perfect body.  I envied it, wanted to touch it, I wished it was closer so I could get a better look.
  • My parents had a very rudimentary home medical book.  It had the most simplistic outline sketch of a male body that was so scandalously interesting to me that I would often take a peak telling myself that I was researching some symptoms that I had.
My family relations were not ideal.  Don't get me wrong.  I definitely had the things that I needed and for the most part we seemed like a functional family, but we were all affected in ways that have only become recognizable in recent years.
  • I had an overbearing mother (she definitely wore the pants in the family).  I am torn, looking back, as to whether I was emotionally close to her or not.  She had a temper.  She only seemed to point out the things we did wrong.  She also did a lot for me and cared for me and my siblings, but we all grew up in an atmosphere of guilt.  It seemed there was nothing I could do right and having fun was a necessary evil.  Somehow every day was cleaning day, yet the house was never clean and we were consequently rarely allowed to play.  When we did go on vacation or enjoy other types of entertainment we were constantly reminded about how expensive everything was, how late we were to the planned event, how we should be home saving our money, etc, etc, etc.  I love her, but she is a very difficult woman.  She definitely got her worst traits from her mother and is almost completely blind to how these traits affect others.
  • My dad was/is not a weak man, but I gather that he just kind of gave up after a few years of marriage.  My mom is great at manipulating everything in to be his fault.  He has told me in recent years that he regrets not standing up for us when my mom was being unreasonably harsh for very minor offenses.  He says that the following example illustrates a frequent theme in our home:  He was working out of town, I had loaded the dishwasher and included the can opener, my mom was irate that I had put it in there because doing so would cause it to rust, I called my dad sobbing, he tried to get the Relief Society President to just stop by, she did not understand what for and did not end up going, and life went on like always.  I would always say I felt closer to my dad because I was not afraid of being yelled at by him.  But I am not especially close to him either.  I feel this complete emotional neutrality when it comes to my relationship with him.  I found out that when I was like four I always wanted to hold his hand and do what he was doing, but he would push my hand away because he did not want me to grow up to be gay. . . go figure!  I have no conscious memory of this but the thought of it makes me ache inside.
I was going to write more but my mind is turning to mush.  I guess I did not do much analyzing.  But these are the types of things that shrinks like to find out about.  There are probably more that I am forgetting.  If I was not born this way it certainly developed at an early age.  I have no recollection of being attracted to a female, despite having many female friends.  In fact, as a boy scout I remember helping with a service project to clean up trash that had blown away from the local garbage dump.  I found a page from a porno magazine and it totally grossed me out.  I can recognize a beautiful woman, but that is a far cry from being attracted to her.

Wednesday, August 22, 2012

. . . until I met HER

  • I did not know that my actions could cause another person so much pain . . . until I met her.
  • I did not know that kissing someone of the less-preferred gender could be enjoyable . . .
  • I did not know how much fun cuddling is . . .
  • I did not know that someone could be so concerned about my well-being . . .
  • I did not know how really trying circumstances can bring two people so much closer . . .
  • I did not know that someone could be so faithful to me . . .
  • I did not know how vulnerable having sex for the first time can make you feel . . .
  • I did not know how much time needs to be invested in a marriage relationship . . .
  • I did not know that I am not nearly as chivalrous or selfless toward my spouse as I always imagined I would be . . .
  • I did not know that I could be so torn between loving someone I have made covenants with and doing something that would destroy life as I currently know it . . .
Yes, I am talking about my wife.  I have largely gotten over the self-loathing that I previously associated with my attractions toward other males.  I am okay with it.  I have come to appreciate the fact that I see beauty in other males.  On many levels I am okay with the realization that I will probably always find males attractive.  But there is one motivating factor that makes me wish it would all go away - not for my sake, but for my wife's.

I know that she is very often weighed down by feelings of being unattractive, unwanted, or ugly when that is simply not the case.  She is a beautiful woman, inside and out.  Her already-fragile self esteem has been battered and trampled by my unfortunate blunders and her inner mind of self doubt.  I try to tell her that she is beautiful, but it is never enough.  I try to comment on her good qualities, but it is never enough.  I try to love her the way a straight man would but it is never enough.

I have not decided to give up on our marriage, but I often wonder if that would be better for her.  She says that if we were to get a divorce she would never be able to love or trust another man again.  She says that she would never be able to date or marry again.  But doesn't she deserve someone better than me?  Doesn't she deserve to be loved in every way for the beautiful woman that she is?

I love her so much and I really wish that I could love her in every sense as a man is supposed to love a woman.  I wish I wasn't broken and that she did not have to be broken down along with me.

Monday, August 20, 2012

. . . until I met HIM

  • I never knew what it was like to want to kiss someone . . . until I met HIM.
  • I never knew what it was like to want to spend every second with one person . . .
  • I never knew how fascinated I could be by someone's simple features like fingers and toes . . .
  • I never knew that a tight embrace could produce such a rush of endorphins . . .
  • I never knew how disappointed I could be about an expected phone call that did not come . . .
  • I never had such an urge to go out and find a scalped ticket to a college football game just so he could help me learn a little more about the game . . .
  • I never felt so much pain from unrequited affection . . .
  • I never knew that the hole inside that I did not know existed could be filled . . .
  • I never understood what being in love meant . . .
  • I never knew how much joy a simple text message (regardless of its actual content) could bring me . . .
I briefly mentioned HIM in a previous post.  In this blog he will be know as Greg.  I was once asked by a friend (this was after I had been married many months), "If you could do anything in the world with Greg right now what would it be."  I later got the sense that he was expecting me to say "have sex with him" or something similar.  But my response was that I simply wanted to be near him . . . doing anything . . . I just wanted to know once again that I was worthy of his time and attention.  And that was the honest truth.  I just wanted to know that a male that I cared about more than any other person in the world cared about me.

SAPPY . . . I know!  I plan on posting a lot more about Greg in coming weeks, but let me give a brief overview:  I met Greg in college.  He was my roommate for about two years.  I do not think he is gay, but part of me holds on to this fantasy that he might be.  I never had any sort of sexual encounter with him, but we did have a very close friendship.  Had I not met him when I did it very well could have been another decade or two before I would have realized why things with girls just never seemed to click.  Maybe I am judging incorrectly, but it seems like a lot of MoHos whose blogs I have read are very shallow when it comes to the looks of object of their affection.  Greg is in no way ugly.  He is actually very attractive, but it was not his looks that brought me in hook, line, and sinker, but his irresistible, fun personality.  He is the only man I have ever truly fallen in love with and I still cannot get over him despite his very direct distancing of himself from me.  I am a hopeless wreck.

Sunday, August 19, 2012

Decisions, decisions, continued . . . HELP!!!

My best hetero-dating experiences came after admitting to myself that I was attracted to men.  What is that all about?  I have some theories but I will save them for another post.

I spent many, difficult, exhausting months working with a university campus counsellor, a psychiatrist, an LDS Family Services counsellor, and a bishop before I came to terms with my sexuality to a sufficient degree that I would not break down into tears upon thinking about it.  Most of my "work" in an effort to allow my attractions and my religion to occupy my mind with some level of harmony came from the workbook created by Evergreen International that was provided to me by LDSFS.  While I have much to say about EI at a later time and have since come to disagree with their approach, the workbook really did help me survive those first difficult months.  I bought in to the idea that homosexuality was an "issue" that one could "work through" by becoming more masculine, participating in masculine activities, and resolving childhood problems.  I had done the work, to the best of my ability, as prescribed and was confident that I was now ready to seriously date and marry as a final step in my treatment process.  So I did.

That three word sentence might seem a little simplistic in describing my getting married, but in some ways it was as simple as that.  Getting married was next on my list of essential to-dos that had been carefully planned out by generations of Mormon forebears.  I was supposed to do it.  I had never imagined any other way.  So I did.

That is not to discount the fact that I love my wife, that she is a wonderful friend and companion, and that I really do feel that there is something special about her, something different than any other girl I have met.  But I never did spend much time really questioning if I was ready.  The idea of a mixed-orientation marriage had still never crossed my mind.  I had come to terms with being attracted to men, but somehow that did not translate into being aware that I was gay (a large part of this had to do with the way EI and LDSFA presented ideas about SSA to me).  That awareness would have left me with a HUGE DECISION to make in my life.  But without being aware of such a decision I moved forward as planned.  I told the girl that is now my wife that I struggled with same-sex attraction and porn.  We shed some tears over that revelation.  I asked her to read the Evergreen website.  And we moved forward, with some measure of caution, but without the slightest clue what a trial this would prove to be for both of us.

My inner mind knew, right after getting married, that things were not going to be a smooth-sailing fairy tale as we had hoped.  But I tried desperately to push those fears away and have hope that time would make everything better.  It was about three months in to our marriage that I slipped up by looking at porn and soon felt that I should be honest with my wife and confess my mistake.  Nothing could have prepared me for the deluge of tears, the blood-curdling moaning and wailing, the palpable distrust and sense of betrayal.  She believed that our marriage was over.  The wailing went on for days and I just could not stand it.  The sound of pain in her cries made me wish I was dead - that is no hyperbole.  I was scared to death and just wanted to run.  I did not know how to console her.  I did not know if she wanted me to console her.  I felt MUCH more devastated about how she felt than I did about what I had done.  My heart was in an emotional vice.  I can only imagine what she was feeling, but the overwhelming emotion made my heart die a little more each day.

Things did get a little better over the following weeks, but life was little more than surviving for us.  I remember reading on some website the following statistics (the numbers don't seem exactly scientific, but my sense of these marriages from my readings of others' situations makes me believe that they are not too far off the mark):  It said that upon coming to terms with a spouses homosexuality about one third of couples divorce almost immediately, about one third takes time to really think things through (over the course of a few months) before divorcing, and only the final third decides to try to make things work.  Of those in the final third, about two-thirds end up divorcing within a couple of years.  Maybe someone out there has more reliable statistics?  But those were very staggering numbers for me.

We decided to stay together.  Or perhaps more accurately, my wife decided we would stay together while I tried to avoid making any decision either way at all costs, resulting in a de facto decision to stay together.  We sought counseling and my wife was convinced, or so I thought, to give me at least 6 months to really start to work through things if it was her desire to stay together.  However, it didn't take long for her to start trying to force me to make a decision and that sort of forcing brought me to the point of being suicidal on more than one occasion.  My mind could not grasp fully embracing either decision.  I attempted to take my own life at one point . . . insert very long story . . . and as a result spent four days in a mental institution (no wonder I can't make any friends - I'm crazy!!!).  It was only after that that my wife decided that she really would leave me alone to really figure things out.  I think that she must have counted out exactly 6 months from that decision because it seemed like things started to get heated again overnight.  She was threatening to move on if I did not decide to make things work.  I was, and still am, not fully decided.  I don't know how to even begin to make such a decision.  But I said I was going to give it my best effort to make things work.

That was almost a year ago.  I have still managed to somehow avoid making any real decisions in my mind.  About 8 months ago she started pushing me to find out when we would start having kids.  I kept punting the question.  I finally convinced her to wait until October before we tried having kids.  As you may be aware, October is coming very soon . . . and . . . er . . . I am almost out of time and definitely out of excuses!  I really do want kids.  I really do love her.  I really do like men.  And after reading about so many failed marriages, if I am eventually going to break or go insane I would rather do it before adding kids to the equation . . . HELP!!!!!!

P.S.  Maybe I should have titled this post "Procrastination, procrastination" because there is not much decision making going on here.


As others have said, I could probably take entire posts from Beck's blog and post them on mine and you would know as much about the way my mind thinks as if I had written the post myself.  I don't know how that happens, but I have really connected with his blog.  I like to read blogs from the beginning, but with over three hundred posts, it is taking me forever to get through his!  Which brings me to the following questions:

How do other people read blogs?  Do most people just read the most recent posts when they find a new blog, or do other people start at the beginning?  Do other people just skim old post archives and read the ones that sound interesting?

However, since I have wanted to comment many times about things that happened years ago, I finally gave in and decided to read a few of his recent posts.  This post is partially inspired by one of his posts.

A few nights ago my wife wanted to see a movie.  We are really struggling to make ends meet financially (i.e. I do not know if we will be able to buy food or pay rent - not looking for sympathy, just explaining).  So a "real" movie theatre was out of the question, but I agreed that we could maybe see something at the dollar theater.  Upon reviewing the listings, none of them really caught my eye.  While my wife was trying to decide if any of them sounded worthwhile to see I pulled up Beck's blog and saw a post about The Most Exotic Marigold Hotel.  He mentioned that there was a sub-plot about a mixed-orientation marriage and that it had opened up an opportunity for him and his wife to have some dialogue about his attractions.

Since neither of us was partial towards any of the movie options I suggested that we could give that movie a try and briefly mentioned that I had read about a MOM subplot.  I do not really have a lot to say about the movie.  I enjoyed it and certainly would not discourage others from seeing it.  I asked my wife what she thought about it.  She only responded that she liked it and we did not say much else  about it.

The following evening my wife came home from the store with tears in her eyes (I really wish this type of occurrence was less frequent than it is).  I asked her what was going on.  She just said that she was having a hard day (we both have a lot of days like that which stem from me being me . . .  ):  She did not want to talk at that moment, but as I saw her work herself into a cleaning frenzy I soon recognized the tell-tale sign that there was definitely something that needed discussing.  When I approached her again about her feelings the first thing out of her mouth was, "Will I ever be number one in your life?  Or will Greg (name has been changed) always be your first true love like the man in the movie?"

While I had hoped that seeing the movie would turn in to an opportunity for us to talk as it had for Beck and his wife, I was taken aback by the approach my wife took right out of the gate.  With discussion starting off like that my initial reaction was (as it usually is) to shut off emotionally, mentally and even physically, if necessary, to avoid having to face reality.  But I didn't!  I still do not know if our conversation helped or hurt our relationship but I was more open and honest than I have been in months.  While I did not answer her question directly (I do not know if I could honestly answer that question even to myself at this point), I am glad that I opened up in some little way.

I told her that there are parts of me that may never be able to survive without male companionship in my life.  I said that I have a hard time distinguishing if my needs are mental, emotional, social, or sexual, but my brain is wired to need close male interaction and I do not think that will change in this life.  I reaffirmed my love for her and my commitment to figuring this all out.  And I admitted that at least part of the reason I have been so down lately is because I just feel really empty and lonely without any male interaction in my life.

For various reasons, ever since being married the only close friend that I seem to have left is my wife.  Maybe this is good or maybe this is very bad.  I don't know.  I know that she likes to keep me close (and I understand some of the reasons why).  Also, I have really been struggling with anxiety/depression which makes meeting new people very difficult for me.  My wife has arranged for us to do things with other couples from time to time, but without fail, and in no uncertain terms, these are couples with whom I have no interest in becoming good friends (I am very picky about friends when I really shouldn't be - I have so many quirks of my own I should not be so quick to discard potential friends!).  ARGH.  It is not normal for married men to have close female friends (of which I have had plenty in my life) and I know that if I were to get close to another male my wife would be highly suspicious.  What am I supposed to do?!

Thursday, August 16, 2012

Decisions, decisions

In my last post I stated that I hate making decisions and I hate being told what to do.  It is a miracle that I even decide to get out of bed each morning.  Apparently this is obvious to those around me as well.  I have an aunt (who is not shy about sharing what she thinks) who described me thusly:  My only coping mechanism when making difficult decisions is to pretend that the problem doesn't exist.  Sad, but true!

I really miss the luxury of having the first twenty-something years of my life planned out for me.  I always did well in school and generally enjoyed being there.  I had an inner drive to go above and beyond by taking advanced courses, especially ones that would transfer to a university.  My parents did not go to college and I don't remember them really reinforcing that I needed to go to college, but I must have had good guidance from teachers along the way.  I knew from an early age that I wanted post-secondary education and did everything I could to be ahead of the game when that time did come.

I was always busy in the church.  Very few months would go by with me in a new quorum before I was called to a leadership position which I always took very seriously (what is that saying about all work and no play?).  I remember being the Teacher's Quorum President and having the quorum advisor calling me the night of our weekly activity to say that he had not had time to get anything ready.  I took it upon myself to get a structured activity ready.  When he showed up and said that we were going to just go hang out (I think he wanted to just get some food and play some sport) I was visibly annoyed and ended up just going home (yes, I was one of those Mormons that annoy the hell out of me right now - self-righteous and uptight, even from a young age).  I really procrastinated my final paperwork for my Eagle Scout award, but finished it in the end.

I had female friends that would drag me out of my house to do stuff.  I did not date, per se, but I did end up taking someone to most, if not all, of the school dances during my junior and senior year.  I had a best female friend that I hung out with a lot, which caused some to assume that we were dating, but I always said that I did not want a steady girlfriend before my mission.  I really did like being around her, but there was never any draw to hold hands or kiss or anything.  I had male friends as well but never seemed to really connect with the ones that I really admired.

Since I started kindergarten almost a year later than most of the kids with whom I graduated (my birthday was two weeks too late to start kindergarten the previous year - I was devastated that my friends from primary were going to school and I wasn't) I only had a few months after graduation before I left on my mission so I did not have to worry about making decisions about college right away.  An in-state university had offered me a full-ride (plus money for books) academic scholarship without me even applying and they agreed to hold it for two years while I was on my mission.  I did not have anything against the school but was not sure that was where I wanted to go and just did not want to make any decisions about it so I asked them to just hold it for me.  I got BYU fever while on my mission.  I had contemplated going there before my mission, but with the majority of Elders around me saying they were going to BYU I felt a strong desire to follow suit.

In the end, money ended up making the decision for me.  My dear mother did most of the footwork (because I was trying to focus on being a missionary) of applying for me to attend BYU and two other schools besides the one that had offered me a scholarship.  BYU offered me a 50% tuition reduction scholarship and I knew that the other in-state schools would match the full-ride scholarship I had previously been offered.  I really wanted to join my comrades at BYU, but with a little encouraging from my mom I agreed that a full-ride scholarship was not something I wanted to give up.  I also liked the fact that the school was a couple of hours away from my family - far enough to have my own independence, but close enough to visit or be visited by them without too much advanced planning.

After my mission, school and work kept me pretty busy.  I did not really date at all during my first year at the university.  The singles' ward I belonged to was made up primarily of people who were close to being dishonorably kicked out of the YSA program (i.e. turn 30) and cliques of people who had grown up together in the same town their entire lives and consequently did not make any effort to get to know the new-coming college-goers.  I just did not really fit in there and kept to myself as much as possible.  I would later learn the boundaries for wards that had younger college kids that had moved away from home to go to school.

I knew I was supposed to date (and hated when my parents would ask me about my dating life) so I dated enough to show that I was putting forth some effort.  Almost without exception I would go on a date or two with a girl, not feel any real desire to go any further, and then wait a couple of months before making myself try again.  I often enjoyed the idea of the date (trying to make it unique or creative) more than I enjoyed the actual date itself.  There were only two girls that I took out more than a couple of times before dating the girl that is now my wife.

Marriage was next on my to-do list so I kept going forward as I was programmed to do . . .  To be Continued . . .

Monday, August 13, 2012

Why Do You Hate Women?

Yes, I am talking to you, you male-loving, chauvinist, homosexual man.  Why do you hate women?

This is a question my wife asked me during one of our many heated exchanges about my attractions towards members of the male gender.  Before I go any further, let me say that I love my wife.  She really is the best woman I have ever met.  This situation is probably at least as difficult for her as it is for me and probably much more so in some ways.  We had discussed, prior to getting married, that I had such attractions.  I told her about the therapy I had been through and how I was working through my "issues."  I directed her to the Evergreen website to help her process my initial confession (partially because I believed at the time that it was a good source of accurate information and partially because I could not handle all of the questions that I knew would ensue).  More on this in later posts . . . but to make a long story short, neither of us could have guessed what this would entail for us in the days, weeks, and months following our wedding.

Do I hate women?  I don't think so . . . most of my friends growing up were female . . . big shocker, right?  There were lots of girls that wanted to date me.  I don't mean to toot my own horn, but I was generally pretty popular among the lady folk both at school and at church.  Maybe I just "hate" motherly figures?

Let me clarify:  I do NOT hate my mother.  But throughout most of high school and ever since then I have not exactly seen eye to eye with her.  I really dislike getting advice from her.  This is likely due to the fact that most of her advice is unsolicited, blatantly obvious, sounds an awful lot like nagging, and generally misses the point altogether because she is so eager to give advice that she does not even listen to what is being said before climbing aboard her oversized soapbox.  WHEW!  That's been building up a while!  In her defense, I think it's genetic.  I think she inherited the worthless advice gene from her mother and I have likely inherited it too.  My poor children . . . (that is, if my seed ever does sprout - no attempts just yet).

Also, I really DO NOT see eye to eye with my mother-in-law. . . likely MUCH more about that to follow in future posts.  She also likes to give advice.  It usually comes by way of her daughter (my wife), but boy do I hear about it!

What is wrong with me?  Aren't gay guys supposed to have especially close relationships with their mothers?  My siblings often teased me about being her favorite (although that has definitely changed since coming out to my parents), but I do not think that I was ever so close to her that she squeezed my love for women right out of me (is that how the close-mom-relationship=gay-son argument goes?).

In summary, I do not like being told what to do (but I am oh so humble about it :) and it seems like it is the women in my life that like to tell me what to do.  BUT, I also don't like making decisions.  Go figure!  What's a guy to do?  In conclusion, if telling other people what to do is the essence of being a woman then I am guilty as charged!  But I know there is much more to being a woman and many men also like to tell people what to do.  I am grateful for good women in my life.  I do not hate them.  I just happen to have a broken sexual-attraction-for-females gear.  Wow!  I did not anticipate this post going this way.  Hope in makes sense should anyone actually read my ramblings!

Sunday, August 12, 2012

Blog Name: An Explanation

I must really have some issues to work through because just choosing a blog name was quite an ordeal for me.  And even now, two sentences in to my first post, I am already regretting my choice.  My mind is so crazy lately!  (Or maybe I am just becoming more aware of it lately?)

Since I have not added any profile information and just wanted to jump in to my first post, let me announce from the beginning that this blog is destined to become yet another in a growing list of gay, Mormon, married blogs.  I am hopeful that joining this blogging community will be therapeutic in some  way as I try to find some peace in my world of cognitive dissonance.

Now on to the meaning behind my blog name:  You would think creativity would come easily to me, right?  I mean, let's face it, I am attracted to men so naturally I am creative.  Haha.  I do not know how these two things are connected, but I do generally fit in to the gay stereotype of being more creative than the average male, however I also over think things a lot so my blog name and probably every post contained herein is far more cerebral than it need be.

(Insert smooth transition to my next thought)  Confession time (hold on because this blog is already off to a runaway-train start):  As a newly pubescent boy I became guilty of the "M" sin whilst in the shower with the water pressure hitting just the right spot and me reluctant to make it stop.  I was not prepared at all for what would happen next.  Within seconds I felt the effects of the  most exciting sensation of my life turn in to the most dreaded, anxiety-provoking, God-fearing guilt I could imagine.  What had I done?  Was I going to hell?  Was I going to jail?  Had my childhood innocence been replaced by an existence as the vilest of sinners?  Such questions might sound like hyperbole, but in reality, I was certain that life as I knew it was over.   As soon as I was out of the shower and dressed I dropped to my knees and offered up the most fervent prayer any boy my age had ever offered as tears rolled down my cheeks and I feared for my own salvation.

In the days and weeks that followed I was continually haunted by my offense to God.  I tried to forget; I tried to convince myself that it had not happened; I hoped I would find some loophole in God's law that would exempt me from having to confess my misdeed.  I could not tell my parents or my bishop or anyone.  What would they think?  What would they do?  I could not hide it from my mind.  So I hoped for the next best thing:  amnesia, head trauma, anything to take away the memory so I would not be held responsible for not confessing.  I just wanted to start over.  I wanted my mind to be a blank slate.

Now here I am, a decade and a half later, hoping once again to be a blank slate.  It has been about two and a half years since I started to come to terms with the fact that I am sexually and emotionally attracted (maybe even addicted) to persons of my same gender.  I am also a believing Mormon.  My awareness of these two, very compelling, seemingly irreconcilable, components of my identity have been the source of more anxiety and sadness than my 12-year-old self could have imagined.  I want to start over.  I want to be at this point in my life with only one of these two driving forces in my cognitive awareness.  I would even settle for a half-erased slate.  Please God, take away one or the other.  I can be gay.  I can be Mormon.  But I don't know if I can survive being both.