Friday, October 29, 2010

Be Happy: In, Through and Around all the Crap

As with Good to be Free it has been some time since my last post. It is nearing the one year anniversary of my Coming Out to my Family and though there has been some progress the realization and hurt of losing a family reaches deep. My way of dealing with this loss has been to engulf myself in work and to never stop moving. I find myself on the go constantly, seldom stopping to think about those back in Utah and what they gave up when they pushed Rich from their lives. At least that is what I like to think. There are many moments of anguish and loneliness when the memories reach to my core and bring tears to my soul. However I have found a new life here in Kansas and Missouri, a new life that I would not change for anything. If I could have my entire family back tomorrow merely by denouncing homosexuality I would not! Though I miss my Mother, my siblings, (especially my twin bro, my other Half) I cherish my life on honesty and self worth. Though there are moments of sadness, loneliness and at time shear agony I would not go back in the "Closet" for anything! I have a feeling this Holiday season might be more difficult than years past, having lost not only my Father to Death a year ago but also a family. I sometimes think his passing would have been easier had we had a better relationship. I came to accept the fact that my father loved me but did not like me a long time ago and I find myself day dreaming of what it might have been like to have had a father who liked me, who enjoyed being with me. And then I find myself filling with guilt thinking that if I had been a better son he might have. The emotions consume me and I bury them deep once again. I can't help but to wonder what his reactions might have been had he lived only a short time longer when my "secret" was put forth to the world? I recall the times I heard him to refer to "My Kind" as "those Homos" who would eventually be responsible for the downfall of society due to their degradation of the Family Unit. I recall the conversations between he and my twin brother regarding the idea of Homeschooling if and when it ever got to the point where homosexuality was taught as a viable option to heterosexuality within the public school system. The realization hits that my Father would have been either my greatest supporter or my Greatest Enemy. Either he would have realized how miserable he had help to make his sons life or he would have thrown me to the wayside more readily and speedily than did others in the family. The saddest part is that I honestly have no idea which way he would have reacted. I honestly do not know if my father loved me or despised me? I would like to think that he loved me but could just never show it? Then I think of his relationship with other siblings in the family and realize that he did know how to love, just not me? Then I think of a comment my older brother made before I left Utah. He told me that just prior to Dads death last December Dad told him that the family was going to have to learn to be more accepting and tolerant in the near future. My brother looked at me and said, "I think Dad knew you were about to come out and in his own way was trying to prepare not only the rest of us but himself as well". There have been some instances such as this where I have hope that my family may come to accept things. Then they seem to forget regress to earlier ways of thought. When I think of the closeness that used to exist I realize that life was literally a lifetime ago. Now it is I who has but up a wall, part of me longs for a call or a text, an email, Anything from Anyone in the family and then another part of me wants nothing to do with them. For if I allow them back into my life, if they should so desire (which they do not) then I also allow for the possibility of them hurting me all over again. Talk about a Dichotomy? A good friend reminded me of a Quote from the words of a Great Being, those of Yoda, which I shared with him not long ago: "Train yourself to let go of that which you fear to lose the most". With that I shall close this post reminding all it's readers that even with all this pain I must once again reiterate that I am so grateful that I am now out of the Closet! I chose to allow the possibility of losing that which I loved the most and feared to lose the most in order to LIVE my life. I shall always be open to the possibility that I am wrong but my heart tells me that God created me this way and that He is very pleased with the fact that I have finally accepted the being which he created, that I no longer fight and try to change that which is good. And maybe, just maybe the day will come when my family understands this? And if not, well. . . then I shall enjoy my life regardless, thanking my maker for helping me finally come to understand the good God created when he created this Gay Soul. And if the day comes that I discover that I have misunderstood this concept? Then hopefully the Atonement of my Savior will take effect? If not then nothing really matters anyway, and that is one thought that I try to avoid. So for now I choose to be Happy: In, through, and around all the Crap!

Monday, August 9, 2010

Dang It's Good To Be Gay

As I watch my hetro friends and family I often sit back and shake my head while asking why? Men and women are so different. Men never want their women to change and women want nothing more than for their men to change. I know there are some fantastic hetro relationships out there but as for me and mine;

I'm Dang glad to be Gay!

Friday, July 30, 2010

Someone to Love . . .

OMGosh I just watched the best movie! It's about a boy who lived through hell yet never gave up hope. About two adults who found love, got lost, and finally saved a boy.

If you want a tug at your heart moment find "AUGUST RUSH" settle down with someone you love, snuggle up under a blanket with a bag of popcorn your favorite drink and prepare to have your heart touched!

As I watched this movie it caused me to reflect upon how I want someone to love and someone to love me back. Someone to snuggle with as we watch a movie. Someone to cry with. Someone to laugh with. Someone to hope with. Someone to hold hands with. Someone to go on long bike rides and or walks through the park with. Someone to cook for. Someone to comfort when they're down. Someone to comfort me when I'm down.



Sunday, July 25, 2010

Why I felt the need to tell the Family. . .

I met with a new group of friends last night and one of them asked me if I was "Out"? If so how long and what the experience was like. After sharing briefly my experience of coming out to the family last December he asked me Why? Why did I even have to come out to my family? He had a problem with those of us who felt the need to tell others about our sexual orientation. I told him that I finally got to the point where I was so sick of living a lie and having to constantly worry about hiding everything that it was time to bring it out in the open. With me the timing was not good, but to be honest it would have been about the same no matter when I did it. People were beginning to find out about me and I knew it was only a matter of time before they began talking to members of my family. (people love to rush in with some big disclosure to the families of someone they "care" about) I had attended a widely publicized multi-faith gay religious gathering and had been filmed by three news camera's which had my picture on at least one of their nightly news programs. I knew that someone was going to see me and start talking so I decided that I wanted my family to hear this particular bit of news from my lips first. As I have noted in previous posts I am not the "Sassy Gay, In your Face, Accept me World, Wo is Me" gay man, however I am no longer the Milk Weed, Walk all Over Me, Hide behind the Mask, Self Loathing person I was for way too many years. My Coming Out has indeed upset the false coherency, outward appearance of security and the seeming unity within in my family. Yet at the same time it has brought more inner peace to my soul than anything I have done. It has opened a new door for those that follow in my footsteps. I know of at least one member of my extended family who is dealing with these issues and the day will come when the time is right for him to come out to his family. When this happens I hope that his parents will handle it with better love and understanding because of what they have experienced through my coming out process. In other words I sincerely hope that what I have gone through has helped to pave the way for the next generation of Gay Human Beings. It will be interesting to see where my family goes from here in their journey to acceptance of their Gay son, brother, uncle, etc. . .

As a side note my this man I met still can't understand why so many of "Us" feel the need to tell our families? If only he could feel of the Freedom which accompanies the honesty! I on the other hand am having a hard time understanding why we have to feel that we can't be honest about who we are? To me this is the question we ought to ponder, not why we want to be honest with our loved ones.

Married, Gay, Temple Attending Mormon

I have been hearing stories of a Man who is in a full gay relationship who was just recently given his temple recommend and who is a "Full Practicing Gay Temple Attending Mormon". I have not given too much credence to the story knowing how much we as humans and especially as Mormons like to pass on hearsay. However I met this man and his partner last night and was enthralled by his story. I share this story only because I got it str8 from the horse’s mouth so to speak. I will not share details like names and locations out of respect for those involved. For the purpose of this post I will refer to them as Joe and John.

Joe is a member of the LDS church and John is not. Joe spent many years away from the church after having served an active LDS mission. During his time away from the church he attended Seminary and received his Pastors certificate in another faith. This is a lifetime appointment and is not taken if one chooses to leave the faith. During this time he met his partner to be, John. The two of them moved to the state where they currently reside. Sometime during this time period they were legally married in a state where Same Sex Marriages are performed. They live together as Full Partners with every "advantage" that attends marriage. In other words they have a very full active sex life. Sometime along the way Joe decided that he would like to begin attending the LDS church again. To make a long story short he was soon back into full activity and fellowship within the church. His Bishop, His Stake President, and the High council have been fully aware of his Partnership from day one. His partner is not LDS and does not attend church with him but does attend most any and all church activities and once in awhile a church service with Joe. The two of them have home teachers who visit regularly. Most important to note is that his local church leadership are fully aware that he is living with his partner, that they were legally married in another state and that they are enjoying the "benefits" of marriage (sex). Joe then proceeded to tell me of the recent renewal of his Temple Recommend and the regular use thereof. Once again I am not sharing my own story but that of another. He has shared this with me first hand and unless he is lying the story is valid to the best of my knowledge. I would like to find a way to tell for sure if his story is accurate? Does anyone out there know of any similar experiences?
Five days later: I haven't been able to verify this story as of yet but I am definitely working on it. It doesn't make logical sense but then who knows? I'll definitely keep you updated.

Tuesday, July 20, 2010


Have you ever fallen for someone who you can't be with? IT SUCKS! It feels like your heart is ripping apart and there is nothing you can do to stop it. Your body aches to the core. Your stomach swirls and twirls and it hurts! For most of my life the gals I dated fell in love with me and then couldn't have me. My Mom always said that someday the tables would turn on me and that I was going to fall for someone I couldn't have, little did she know it would be with a man. I'd rather break my leg at least the codine would help ease the pain. Oh well it is what it is, Accept it and move on. . .
P.S. Other than this glitch Life is pretty darn good!

Saturday, July 10, 2010

I may not be Beautiful. . .

I might not be the most beautiful person or have the perfect body. I might not be the 1st choice but I am a GREAT choice. I don't pretend to be someone else because I am too good at being ME. I might not be proud of some of the things I've done but I am proud of who I am today. Take me as I am, or watch me as I go!"

Moho Morph Chapter Two

For most of my life I hid the real Rich. Most saw me but my true identitly remained hidden. No one ever saw my real face all they saw was the mask I wore. I was a faceless, closeted Mormon Homosexual in despair, until. . .

I was talking with one of my best friends the other day and we were talking about the progress I have made since having accepted that I was Gay. She made the comment that she couldn't believe how happy I seemed and what a difference it was from even a year ago. She said that she was at one time scared to death that she was going to get a phone call informing her that I had killed myself. She told me that these were rough times for her because she knew there was nothing beyond just being there for me that she could do. She reminded me of the very instance, the very phone call were she knew that the tide had turned and that I was going to be alright.

In one of my prior posts I tell of the experience I had with a councilor who was able to help me change my life. I was one of the gay Mormons who fell under the reparative therapy theory era. I was convinced that my soul was damned because I liked guys and often I had "bad" thoughts enter into my mind which would not stop coming no matter how hard I tried. No matter how hard I tried I could not force myself to change, I could not make myself be attracted to the ladies and neither was God making it happen no matter how often nor how sincere I begged. Over a period of time this ate at my soul. I remember sitting in General Priesthood meeting on numerous occasions and listening to brethren say things that I took as damning my soul. If only I was good enough, if only I tried harder, if only I served more, if only. . . But nothing worked, I still had the most horrible thoughts continually enter my head when it came to certain men around me that I found attractive. I fought it more than I could express here with mere words, but to no avail. My life had become so consumed with the fight that life itself lost all meaning. When one believes his soul is damned there is no reason to go on. Over a period of time this took it's toll and drained my being of most of the drive within. This is the period my friend was talking about when she made the comment regarding how worried she was about me. Little did she know at the time that her phone calls literally kept me alive. I remember the night she referred to when I actually had my 45 out on the bed next to me while I was talking with her on the phone. I had called to say my goodbyes. I don't remember what she said or did, but obviously whatever it was worked for I am here today writing this post. Another time I stood perched on the outside edge of a freeway overpass readying to jump. Every time a semi-truck drove by I noticed a car or minivan near and feared that the truck would swerve and hit the vehicle killing it's passengers. I stood on that overpass from about 11:30 till nearly 3:30ish in the morning. These instances have much more detail to them but suffice it to say I had lost all hope.

The moment my friend was referring to when she knew the tides had turned occurred one night when I called her on the phone as I was leaving a new councilor's house. By this time I wasn't attending church much because it hurt too much. My bishop called me in one day and asked if I would talk to his neighbor, a new member of the word who happened to be a dean in the psyche department at a local university. He thought that this man might be able to recommend a councilor who might be able to help me. The night I met him I was scarred to death that he might see how desperate I really was, that he might discover my hidden secret. If that happened I didn't know what I would do. During the course of our visit I learned that he had a private practice which specialized in working with gay returned missionaries. Holy Cow now I was really petrified, I knew that he knew. Oddly enough as time went on I later found out that I had hidden it so well that even he did not pick up on it during our chat. He recommended a councilor to me and told me that this was one of the best he had ever worked with. I went to see this person and clicked with him from the moment we met. He told me during our first visit that he strongly believed that if he could not help an individual to learn how to help themselves within a three month period that either he wasn't doing his job or that his pt wasn't willing to change. Once again I won't go into details here but something happened inside of me that night, a light was reignited deep within. As I was sitting there in his home talking with him I knew that there was hope. As I was leaving he looked at me and thanked me for coming but asked that I perhaps call it a good visit but not return. I was shocked. He then preceded to tell me that if I wasn't able to be honest with him, to stop bullshitting him as he put it, then I was merely wasting his time and mine. I assured him that I was being honest with him, to which he replied "Bull". I left in tears completely committed to never darken his door again. However I knew he as right, I knew what he was talking about too yet I was not about to tell anyone. My heart told me that this was my chance to come clean, this was my chance to finally deal with this thing which had destroyed my life. Within three minutes of leaving I called him on the phone and told him that he was right and that I would tell him everything the next week if he would see me again. The next week I said the words "I am Gay" out loud for the first time in my life and I have not looked back since. That night my soul was freed! As I left his home I called my friend and talked with her about having met a new councilor that I really thought could help me. Keep in mind though I had told Rich that I was gay this friend did not know, or at least I thought she didn't know. It would be another month before I was ready to start telling others and she was the first to know.

As we were talking on the phone last night she told me that it was that night as I left Rich's house that she knew that I was going to be OK. Rich has somewhat of a different philosophy when it come to counseling people, he believes that we all have the answers within we just need some help learning how to access them. My Moho blogosphere friends I cannot even begin to describe what I felt that night as the light was reignited. There have been some rough times since then, the roughest when I first told my family and all Hell broke loose. However it is important to note that even then the absolute darkness of despair never entered my soul again. I told Rich one year ago this coming September and my family the following December.

In trying to deny my core it drove me to despair and near suicide. In accepting the Gay soul within it brought complete peace and joy into my life. If one is to research the fruits of the Spirit, it becomes obvious which came from God and which from Satan himself. I have come to believe that God does not want me to deny who I am, His love for me goes deep and his heart aches when he sees the despair from having tried so hard to change something that is for me unchangeable. I do not understand homosexuality, I do not claim to have the answers but my heart tells me I am finally on the right path which will eventually lead to eternal happiness.

For now I will continue to attend Church, to interact with the members of my ward, and to do so as an openly Gay man. I will no longer be ashamed of who I am. I will no longer hide in the closet. I have a hope that by so doing I may be able to open the eyes of some and make the path easier for those who follow in my footsteps. As you can see from my last post this is already beginning to happen.

NOTE: When I finally told my friend Brenda that I was Gay her reply was, "Well it's about time, I was wondering if I was going to have to tell you".
I think that I will share photos of the Rich who was lost and in despair and then some of the Present Rich who in the Morphing process in my next post?

Thursday, July 8, 2010

The Homo Metamorphasis

This whole coming out process is definitely a metamorphosis. I have gone through numerous different stages from self loathing and hatred to self acceptance. From Suicide to a deep rooted love of life. I have gone from Loving the Church and thinking it fault free to having much anger for being duped then back to the middle where I realize that the church is not perfect. The prophet and the men running the church are merely men who make mistakes, but that doesn't make the Church wrong. It just means the Lord has no choice but to use imperfect faulty men to run his earthy organizations. I can honestly say that my anger stage is pretty well over, but it is important to remember that I have no intention of ever going back to my previous states of belief. I still haven't decided exactly where I am at with the Church but I can at least attend without the intense anger.

Not only is this a changing growing experience for myself but for everyone around me who has to deal with the fact that I am gay. My Family, my church, my friends, I have seen them all morph, some for the better some for the worse. Last Friday I went to a game night with my bro and his wife. The first Friday of every month they meet with about twenty to thirty of their friends from the ward to play games and EAT! While there the women kept coming up to me and hugging me or putting their arm around me and welcoming me, keep in mind my bro had told most in the ward that I was Gay before I even started attending. The women were going out of their way to make this Gay brother of their good friend feel welcome and the men, bless their hearts were having an extremely difficult time even saying hi to me. Not that they were showing hatred and anger, just confusion and uncertain as to how to act around a gay guy. I think many of them will come around, some wont but many will. The hostess approached me and began to inform me that I was invited to become a permanent guest at their little gatherings. she told me that most people came with their spouse, but some came with their date or "partner". (I loved how she threw in Partner) I laughed and said, "I can only imagine how everyone would act if I ever showed up with a "partner". She got real serious and looked at me and said, "You are welcome here anytime with "anyone" boyfriend, girlfriend your welcome". WOW! This was a first for me, so different from my experience with church members in Utah. My third time attending this ward one of the Sisters found out about me and attempts to line me up with her gay friend. Three sisters standing outside the Relief Society room attempting to find me a boy. There are those who despise me here too but I am also seeing a much better side of Mormondom. Two of my brothers friends from the Ward arranged to take him skeet shooting this mornin and he invited me to tag along. I was somewhat, OK not somewhat, a whole lot uncomfortable with the whole situation. Keep in mind the men in the ward don't know how to act around me. It didn't take long before we were all just friends, not str8 men with a gay man but equal human beings out having fun. As we were all readying to depart one of the men came up to me, took my hand into his to shake with his other hand on top of the back of my hand, looked me in the eyes and said, "I am really glad you were able to come and that I was able to get to know you". It felt like he was trying to say "I am sorry I misjudged you and after getting to know you realize that you are just a normal decent guy". It felt extremely sincere.

For any of you who have read my blog you well know that many in my family have been absolute poops through my coming out, and that is putting it mildly. For mothers day I sent my mom Carol Lyn Pearson's book No More Goodbyes. Last week I found out that she had not started the book and had no real intentions of doing so. My older brother and his family were on their way to Nauvoo this week to do a pageant of some sorts so I called his wife and asked her if she would go pick up two books from my mom and bring them to me. She asked what books and I told her that mom would know if she just said I want the books back. She asked her husband my brother to pick them up on his way home from work. Mom gave them to him and he walked to his car before looking to see what they were. Important to note this bro is not "Good" with my gayness. I feared he would throw the books away if he knew what they were. Instead he walked back into the house handed them to Mom and said, "Mom I cant take them, I can't get rid of the feeling that you need to read them and you need to start now". WOW! Blew my mind when I heard this. He left and I hadn't heard from mom until this afternoon about what happened. This afternoon she called and informed me that she had been reading "the book". She then began apologizing for how horrible she, the family and the world had treated me. She said that what she read really opened her eyes to what gay men go through, especially gay men within the Mormon church. She said she felt sick that "my People" had suffered so much because of people like her. She told me that she was going to have a talk with each of my siblings and let them know how she now feels about the whole thing. She said that she was going to try to get my twin to read Carol Lynn's book. To be honest I doubt he will but then again I thought my Mom really wouldn't either. Even if she goes back to the way she was it was worth it just to hear her say the things she said today and to actually apologize for what she has done. As any who has gone through this with families who turn on them know it makes life hell. It is almost indescribable what it feels like to have people who you thought loved you turn on you merely because you are gay. To have your twin brother, your literal other half who you have been inseparable with, say some of the most vile horrible things to you. To know that they think you are the lowest of low the worst of the worst. The pain goes so deep that it can literally cause one to temporarily loose the will to live. But I sit back today and thank God that with the help of some good friends I was able to make it through those darkest of days, for if I had ended things when they were at their worst I never would have known the love and joy that I now experience. I never would have met some of the best people I have ever known. I never would have known true love. It is still a day to day roller coaster ride but the lows are not so low and the highs are. . . well, they're great! And the best part is that I am able to help others as a result of having gone through it myself. It will be interesting to see where life's changes take me next. My heart feels deep love and compassion for those who chose death over life. They just didn't understand that things could get better. I hope that as you read this you can see that even some of the worst scenarios have the possibility of turning out OK if you will but see things to the end. For now I don't have any expectations where the family is concerned what I will do is enjoy the good moments when they occur. And endure the not so good ones as they arise. And as a side effect of having finally accepted who I am I have experienced the fantastic Morph of the Body as well as the soul. After accepting myself I was finally able to let go of the wieght. I started losing weight one year ago this month. During this period I have lost just over 160 Lbs and am actually allowing myself to "Crush".

Thursday, July 1, 2010

How to Ask Out that Special Boy

Dating for the Gay Dummy

I've noticed that people develop crushes and then are afraid to let the crushee know they liked. So here's the challenge, Do something nice for that person and see how they react. If they respond kindly or return inkind then you may just have a chance, take the next risk and ask them out. Go ahead take the risk what have you got to loose? The worst that can happen is that you may hear the word NO.

Why is it that mankind is afraid to let their feelings be known? Why are we afraid to let someone know we think they are a pretty decent guy and would like to get to know them better? I fall into this trap myself. If by some chance you happen to be on the receiving end of this challenge treat the person with respect. If you like them jump at the chance to get to know them better, if you don't like em so much then be nice but simply decline the offer respectfully. A simple line like, "thanks but I'm not really interested in going out". Short, honest and to the point. Hey what a novel idea, "Get Rid of the Mind Game" part of the dating game! Come on boys lets do it right, get out there and let that special someone know you think they're Hot!

Wednesday, May 19, 2010

Live, Love and Enjoy

I have spent a life time trying to help others who suffer. As a child and well into my adult life I was constantly looking for someone to come along who truly cared and who would save me from the atrocities from which I had suffered. It is somewhat easy to admit that someone abused you as a child but much more difficult to admit that it went on well into the teenage years. Marilyn Vanderber, Miss American in 1958, talks of her father and how he abused her almost nightly well into her late teens. If people have a hard time understanding how one could allow it to continue to such an age try being the one who it happened to. You become such an underdog that you have no idea how to make it end. It has become such a part of your life and you fear the individual so much that you don't know how to make it stop. While on my mission I came to develop a very close relationship with a particular family in Haverhill, Massachusetts. This family had a teenage son who used to beg my companion and I to take him out working with us constantly. We enjoyed having him along so we obliged whenever we could. We thought it odd that a young teenager would want to spend so much time with us. One morning we were at their house introducing a young man we had just baptized to seminary. The mother of this family was the ward seminary teacher. While there a huge fight broke out between this young son of hers and his step father. We were later to find out that the step father had been abusing the kid since he was seven years old. This particular morning he went into the room to wake him and did some inappropriate things to which the kid finally after all these years exploded. Many ask why he allowed it to go on for so many years, almost like they were accusing him of being responsible for the abuse. The stories go on and on but this much I have come to fully understand, The child, whether toddler, youth, or teenager is not to blame. These monsters used me and many like me to fulfill their selfish lustful desires. They used such tactics as death threats not only to myself but to my family members. They used drugs to try and control me, they would sneak them into food and on the back of stickers in the sticker books they gave me. They had so much control that one had no way of escape. Finally the day comes when they no longer have the control. For some it comes from shear age and rebellion. Some hit the breaking point and literally explode. It almost always comes to a stop at some point but for all it leaves scars that last generally last a life time.

I have recently had the blessed opportunity of working with some of the best people I know who were also abused as children. I have come to dearly love these individuals and have come to truly and completely admire them for the courage they have shown in coming forth and dealing with the shit that these abusing monsters inflicted upon them.

One of the similarities I have noticed is as I have mentioned before, people like to blame the Gay thing on the abuse. It just is not true. If abuse were to blame to for sexual orientation there would be so many more gay people. Most people I know who were sexually abused as children are hetro. I think the percentages who are gay are rather small. Anyone who reads this and has a story to share I would love to hear your story.

Go bless all you moho's out there who are suffering for whatever reasons. Know that you are not alone and that happiness is just around the corner if you will but endure. I believe that God meant for us to be happy, Gay Str8 it matters not, we were meant to live, love and enjoy eachother.

Sunday, May 9, 2010

Is It Possible to be Grateful for Pain

As I have mentioned writing about abuse as a child has been a difficult decision. Then deciding what to disclose was even more difficult. If you say too much many read your words and think that your a freak. Don't say enough and, well you might as well not write anything. I have had a number of people email me regarding some of these last few posts and these emails have truly touched my heart. For many years you think you are alone in your suffering and then events take place which open your eyes to the pain suffered by many. For some the pain comes from living as a gay man in a str8 world. Others experience it due to abuse from childhood. And there are there those who have physical deformities, mental illness challenges, depression, and the list goes on and on. The one thing we all have in common is that we know what it feels like to hurt. Some have never experienced true love, but everyone on the face of this earth has experienced pain. Looking back I don't know that I would change a thing in my life. The abuse was unbearable at times. Living as a gay man in a Mormon world has proven itself to be an almost impossible task. and yet still I wouldn't change my experiences for anything. For you see I can honestly say for the first time in my life that I "LIKE" who I am. I like the person who resides within this chunk of carbon. I have a love of life and a love of people that I may not have been able to develop any other way than by surviving my experiences. I have a heartfelt empathy for those who are suffering which may never have developed with the pain and heartache felt along the way. When I see a child who has been harmed a flame ignites within that makes me do anything to protect that child. For those who read this post who wish their lives could be different, sit back for a minute close your eyes and ask yourself what is wrong with who you are? And I mean seriously wrong, not just the small stuff that we all know about ourselves that no one else knows. (those things that everyone does but thinks they are the only one who does them) You know like how many times you've masturbated, or the bad thoughts you have in your head when you think of that guy that just walked by. Those things aside, I'm talking about the important stuff here, you know like what the Saviour taught. Things like comforting those who stand in need of comfort? When was the last time you mourned with someone who was mourning? How do you react when you see someone who is hurting? How often do you pass by a stranger in need? If these things are in order then why do we desire to be something we are not? If nothing is truly broken why spend so much time trying to fix what need not be fixed.

I recently had a lady contact me who had been involved with the same group who abused me as a child. She is having a hard time dealing with what happened to her as a child. Working with her has been difficult because it has brought to surface many emotions and memories that I didn't care to have brought to surface. Though it has been difficult this individual desperately needed someone who understood to listen to her and help her realize that she is not crazy, that none of this was her fault. As we talked and she discovered that some of the same people were involved and that they took us to many of the same places her fears and anxieties were somewhat dissipated.

I have had the opportunity of getting to know another young man who was abused as a child and have been able to see him grow in leaps and bounds. (ya I'm talking about you g)

Two others have written telling me of the horrors they endured as children.

Though the purpose of this blog is not necessarily to talk about my childhood abuse I will continue to share some of it from time to time in the hope that those of you out there in the moho blogosphere who have remained silent about the abuse which may have taken place in your life may know that you are not alone, that you do not have to hide that part of your life. That there are others out there who know what you have gone through and who understand. I think the most common fear that I have heard from the moho's who have written me about their abuse is that if people find out they were sexually abused as a child then they will come to the conclusion that the abuse caused them to be Gay. Many have expressed the deep rooted feelings that they know within their very core that the abuse had nothing to do with their being gay. For those dealing with both abuse and being gay, my heart goes out to you, but also listen intently to what I had to say earlier in this post, for I truly would not change a thing from my past. The day will come when you are grateful for the abuse, in a weird sort of way. I know that sounds crazy but there are things you have learned and traits you have developed because of it that are of infinite worth. Learn and grow from them, accept who and what you are and that your past has created the present you. Without your past you wouldn't be who you are today. And for that we can thank the damn bastards! And then hope the Lord deals them theirs in the next life. By so doing you are able to somewhat forgive, move on and spend the rest of your life helping others who so desperately need you.

Isn't it funny how much abuse victims and moho's have in common?

First Blind Date

Screw Bella Lets set him up with Edward. . .
So today I went with my Brother and his family to Sacrament meeting here in Kansas City. After Sacrament one of the sisters in the ward was talking to my Sister in Law and was talking about lining me up. My sister in law stopped her midstream and told her that I would not take to the idea of being set up for a date. . . then she added, "with a woman"! My Bro and his wife have been great! They have no problems with my being gay and they have no problem with others knowing about it. The sister looked at her with a look of surprise and said, "you mean, he's. . .? To which my sister in law replied. . ."that's what I'm saying"! There was a pause and then the sister proceeded to say that she knew the cutest guy that they just had to introduce me to?

They couldn't wait to tell me all about it when I went over to their house for dinner a few hours later. Apparently the sister at church has plans to catch me before I have a chance to bolt after Sacrament next time I go and talk to me about her "friend"!

WOW! They say the church is different in the mission field but I never dreamed I would be set up on a date with a "Guy" by one of the sisters from relief society?

This one should go down in the annuls of gay church history!

Wednesday, April 7, 2010

Another Nephew in Tears

Sometimes I just want to say "Damn It All To Hell" when it comes to how many people react to my coming out. The saddest part is that the worst offenders are my Mormon family and friends. Why is it that when it comes to this subject they seem to throw the most important teachings of the Saviour right out the window? What happened to Love the Lord thy God. . . and the second like unto it, Love thy neighbor. . . Why is it that the most important teachings of all get so overlooked by so many self proclaimed righteous individuals?

Another Nephew was told that his Uncle (Me) was gay this evening. He has spent the evening in tears and refuses to talk to me. I know I need to have patience, but what I don't understand are Church leaders who know that what they teach is causing people to react this way and yet they basically do nothing about it. Once again, "Where are the teachings of the Savior?

My heart breaks for another nephew because they have to suffer so as a result of what they have been taught.

Like I said, Damn IT!

I am finally in Kansas City and settling in with my new Job. Hopefully Ill have time to share a bit more regarding the abuse I endured as a child. I have had a number of people email me asking why I stopped. It got difficult to write so I needed a break, but think I'm ready to start again.

Tuesday, March 2, 2010

Abuse Part Three: Memory

Parts of this post have been copied and pasted from journal entries written a few years ago. Though life still has it's challenges I am at peace with much of what has happened in the past. I have discovered the Peaceful Warrior within and have finally come to understand that the only thing which I have control of is that which is found within. The adult Rich has finally become the Peaceful Warrior that the child inside has needed to comfort and aid him, to let him know that things will be OK. As every survivor of childhood abuse will witness, there is a child within that is constantly searching for someone to protect him, for someone to hold him close and comfort his cries. We often spend a lifetime searching for this individual from without, trying to find one in whom we can trust, one who will give solace to the child within. It took me a long time to realize that no one could be strong enough, caring enough, "there" enough to give my inner child what he needed. The only way to comfort the child within was to find the comforter within, to allow the adult Rich to become that person. With this in mind here are my thoughts for today:

Memory; a simple yet powerfully complicated word. This word has less understanding for me and has brought more anguish to my life than almost any other word in the English language. Memories have brought joy to my life, confusion, pain, anguish, they have brought tears of ecstasy, they have brought me to the edge of suicide. It would be nice if we had the choice of which to keep and which to discard. For too many years I thought I had control of this act, I thought I could keep the ones I wanted and hide the rest. . .

One of the points that I neglected to mention in either of my two previous posts is that the person who was the "leader" of this group that met at my grandparents was also one of my local church leaders. He was a man of prominent stature within Salt Lake Cities business community, the Church's business ventures, and Local Church Leadership. Many people have asked me over the years why if my stories were true did not this young child ever tell anyone what was taking place. I was constantly threatened not only by those whom should have loved me the most but also by a man who was my local church leader. Perps know how to manipulate, how to use fear and guilt to accomplish their goal of not getting caught.

I was in a room with "Him" one day. I was sitting or rather reclining on a couch or some other piece of furniture. He was good at what he did, he not only knew how to hurt kids but he knew how to make them forget and do what he wanted them to to. While alone in this room with him he was telling me that everything was my fault, that no one loved me, that God would kill me if I ever told anyone. He would tell me that my brother was next if I didn't do what he said. Remember this was a highly educated very respected man in the local community and he knew what he was doing. I remember sitting there one particular day, only this time with my eyes closed, he thought I was under the influence of the drug he had given me, and who knows maybe I was, but what I do remember was this obstinate kid thinking to himself that no one was going to control him and tell him what to do any more. This man thought he was in control but I was going to make a special place to run to every time he came and while in this place he could do whatever he wanted but he could never really get to me again because I had tricked him. You see he had the fake rich but the real rich had run away to his secret place where no one could touch him. At this early age I had learned a secret, a skill which many abuse victims learn to master, that being how to separate myself within myself. This man and the idiots in his group could do what they wanted but they were not going to win, they were not going to get the real me. No matter what they did the real me was always safe. This solution worked for many years, looking back I believe it is what kept me alive. but what works for the child often does not work for the adult. You see I had never processed any of these memories. It was like I somehow took them and created a special box to put them in where they were locked up tight until the box got so full that neither the hinges nor the box itself could not contain them any longer, yet still I kept cramming more and more in until one day it exploded open with "shit" flying in all directions.

The human mind is a funny thing, a song, a picture, a word, a building, a pair of glasses, and most of all for me certain smells all act as triggering mechanisms. . .

. .When I was seventeen I was working at our family restaurant one night when this kid about my age came in to order some food. From the moment he walked in the front door his smell had me. I was not even sure what the smell was but it seemed to grab me and take me to a place I did not understand. If I could have jumped over the counter and put my nose right on him and inhaled I would have just to try and remember what the smell was. I knew that I had smelled it before but for the life of me had no idea when or were. After walking in the door he came straight up to me and, looking me in the eyes, said, "do you know what this smell is?" at this point I was completely taken by surprise. How did he know that I was trying to figure out what he smelled like? How did he know what his smell had done to me? I did not know how to respond so I managed to croak out the word, "no!" the bright intellectual approach. He once again looked me straight in the eye and said, "Sex, what you smell is Sex, I have been having sex all night and all day and the smell is all over me. When you have sex over and over this is what it smells like!" His words were burned into my memory for I knew that I had smelled that smell before . . .

How could an experience be so intriguing yet so horrifying? Part of me wanted this kid to stay forever and let me smell him and another part of me wanted to run and vomit. . .

Years later you find yourself walking down the street and a song is playing as you walk past a building. One second you are as happy as can be and the next you are in an absolute near suicidal panic attack and you have no idea why? One day at church an old man comes up to you and says something, you have no idea what he said but you know that you want to run, get away as fast as you can. Once again you have no idea what brought on such a strong reaction? Through them all you have glimpses into the past but only enough to make you think that you are going crazy, for how could any sane person see the things that you see? How could any sane individual see the horrifying pictures in their mind that you see?

Your religion teaches you that your thoughts are as condemning as your actions and so you do everything within your power to push these thoughts away, you sing hymns, you pray, you read your scriptures anything you can think of that will bring God in and make them go away. You are taught that your mind is like a stage and that you are in control of the performance that is being acted out on the stage at all times. You are taught that it is your responsibility to make sure that only good wholesome plays are acted out on your stage of life. If this is true then why are so many horrifying plays finding their way to your stage? Where are these pictures coming from? You have done a great job at holding these memories at bay for a long time and now they want out. The problem is that you think that you are evil each time they surface so you push them even deeper were no one but you can see them, the only problem is that memories will not be held at bay forever, sooner or later they will find a way out and when you have tried to hold them back for so long they often come out like the flood waters of a broken dam. Everyone needs a safe place, someone in whom they can confide where there is no judgment, no looks of horror as they discover your secrets. The only problem is that abuse survivors find it difficult if not impossible to trust, therefore they (we) are constantly on the search for this person with whom we can share our secrets, yet we seldom find them because we are so unwilling to trust. We often tell part of a story to test how the individual will react and when we don't get the response that we want we freeze up and hide even deeper. I have learned that the secret to dealing with the crap is to finally come to understand that one is not broken, as mentioned in a previous post these Bastards did not have the power to break me. I merely needed to learn how to find and follow the peace. . .

Sunday, February 28, 2010

Sex Abuse part two "Pure Evil"

It's been a couple of days since I last wrote mainly because these posts are somewhat more difficult to write than the others have been but for whatever reasons I feel the need to write them. I honestly thought I would never be sharing this part of my life with people, let alone in such a public forum as this. When looking back upon my life I often tell myself; "It is what it is" deal with it and move forward.

Perhaps it is by sharing and talking about this crap that the next step forward can begin.

Beware, for to some it may come across as a bit strong and perhaps Adult rated but remember, It is what it is:
He might as well have been the Devil himself for my step grandfather was a man who got off by forcing children to watch him masturbate, shoving their faces into the crotches of adults, and drugging kids while then tying them up to be used in his ceremonial practices. Never did this man or his cronies care one bit what kind of damage they inflicted upon those whom they hurt. The only thing they cared about was satisfying their own needs, lusts, desires, and psychopathic belief system.

It shall forever be implanted within my mind each and every time these people committed their horrocities, however it no longer haunts me as it has for most of my life. I have finally been able to accept things and move forward. I have realized that I cannot change yesterday and I cannot live a tomorrow which has not yet occurred. The only thing I can do is to enjoy and make good use of this very moment. A good friend helped me to look deep inside one day and realize that nothing was broken, that these inhuman monsters never had the power to break me, to permanently damage me in ways that couldn't be healed. They merely had the power to momentarily control me and cause much pain along the way.

One of the reasons I fear sharing this is because there will be those who will look at these experiences and say to themselves, "so that's what caused Rich to be Gay"! With this in mind some have thought they could "fix" me so that I might give up these attractions and reconcile myself with God and His Church. Those who feel this way do not understand homosexuality. I was abused by men and women alike. I was put in situations that would turn many away from sex of any kind. These were horrible experiences yet deep within I know they had nothing to do with my orientation. If anything they would have caused me to desire celibacy, not same sex attraction.

My grandmother had to have known the evil within this man. One night I was sleeping over at their house as I often did. Grandma came in and woke me up somewhere past midnight, grabbed my belongings and ushered me out the door telling me that grandpa was home and he had been drinking so I had to go home. I remember thinking that she was acting real funny, almost like she was in a panic and terrified. I later learned that he had threatened her life and that of many of my family members if she ever pulled any "shit" on him. Twice that I know of my grandmother had broken bones. One time she told us that she was walking in a parking lot and a car backed into her. Once again I later discovered that both times "he" had beaten her and broken her bones, by throwing her down the stairs.

The first recollection I have of any abuse occurred one night when he made me touch him and watch as he masturbated. I had no idea what this was all about but I knew I did not like it, I was terrified. The second occurrence took place during one of their ritual ceremonies. During the course of their activities clothes came off and the face of a young six to seven year old was forced into the crotch of some old lady. Even as I write this the memory comes alive and I can almost smell the most foul stench imaginable. The smell is what I remember most. Funny how decades later I can be transported back to childhood and literally physically smell what I smelled then. The mind is a powerful thing. One day about six years ago I was sitting in an office as I volunteered time for one of my favorite charities when in walked this woman who smelled horrible. I literally had to leave the room to keep from upchucking. As I walked choking into the restroom the memory of this incidence flooded my mind and soul as if had actually happened only moments before. Some memories are always present, others are buried deep until one day without warning something triggers you within and a new memory comes gushing forth as if the floodgates of hell have been opened wide. I think some memories are so horrific that in order to remain sane the mind buries them deep until one is ready to deal with the ramifications that accompany them.
Im not sure what I will share next for there are many experiences to choose from. . .

To the molestors, rapists, and abusers of the world; Here's To Ya --->
(Not exactly the Christ like love I spoke of in my last post, SORRY!) I want to be loving and kind but the emotions run deep were these individuals are concerned.

Thursday, February 25, 2010

The Journey of a Sex Abuse Victim

I recently read a post on a friends blog Hopes Journey which quite intrigued me. This friend has been working with sex offenders and shared with we readers his perspective on the trials these men face. He had some great points and I will not pass judgment here on whether or not I agree with all that he said, for I am not sure how I feel regarding some of it. Let it be said though that our responsibility as Children of God is to first and foremost "Love the Lord thy God and the second is like unto it "Love our neighbors as ourselves". I'm not quite sure how this fits into the arena where sex offenders are concerned. I leave that decision up to each of you, what I will do throughout the next few posts though is share with you my story:

My grandfather, who was one of the worlds best men, passed away when I was five years old. Whether it was on the rebound or not I am not sure but my grandmother quickly remarried a man who was only a year or so older than my mother. Later in life I discovered that this man had spent the 17 years previous to their marriage in numerous different prisons, including Ft Leavenworth. In another post I will share his story and what put him in prison, for now suffice it to say that he was an evil man.

Grandma married this man in March and by the end of the following summer the abuse had begun. We lived on the outskirts of town, a suburb of Salt Lake. We lived on a few acres of land with my Grandparents living directly behind us. Times were different then, Children roamed freely without parents worrying for their safety. We could be gone for hours at a time without the parents knowing exactly were we where. This proved to be quite beneficial to my step grandfather and his little band of sicko's.

The real horror began one night in August, while sleeping over at my grandparents. My grandparents had invited a friend of theirs who was a psychic over for the evening. There was a group of friends gathered in the basement and I had been told to stay upstairs but my curiosity got the best of me. I crept to the top of the stairs listening intently as the group of adults downstairs went through the rituals of a crystal ball fortune telling ceremony. As the weeks and months went by the ceremonies became more intense. This is the group that my step grandfather eventually pulled me into. The abuse started with him and then one day they invited me into the basement during one of their ceremonies.
This is when the real hell began. . .
To be continued. . .

Wednesday, February 24, 2010

Moving To Kansas City

Saturday Night I got a phone call from an individual in Kansas City offering me a job. This call came as a complete surprise for I had not been looking for work, my Real Estate career here in Utah has been going well and I had no reason to look elsewhere. I guess my brother got the ball rolling by throwing my hat in the ring without me knowing. At first I told him that I was not interested that I liked my life the way it was. However I told him that I would consider the offer and get back to him. I have recently come out to the world and have met some of the best people within the local moho community. For the first time in my life I have felt like I belonged, like I have actually found family and I have no desire to leave it. By Sunday evening I knew I needed to take the offer, my soul was screaming that this Moho has things to do in places other than Utah. I have two weeks to be packed and on the road to Missouri. My base will be in Independence, MO and I am hoping that there is an active moho community there as well. I know there is a lot of church history in the area and that the church is fairly strong there, and if the 10% rule has any truth to it I should be able to find myself some moho's in MO. That would make us MoMoHo's! LOL Anyway I will keep ya'll up on my adventure with pictures, stories and who knows possible even a romantic tale to tell? I went on line to see what kind of Gay venues there are in KC and discovered that they had a "bathhouse". Not knowing what a bathhouse was I clicked on the link and decided to read some of the comments made by its patrons. WELL, let me tell you, this boys eyes were opened, I really am too Innocent in many ways. Perhaps I shall choose to stay far away from the bathhouse. I did discover that there is a local chapter for affirmation and I sent off an email requesting INFO INFO INFO. I then went on Connexion and noticed quite a few "cuties" in the area so what the hey, I'm off for a new adventure.

I have a brother who lives south of Kansas City and when talking with him about moving closer the topic somehow switched to me and my sexuality. He hym'd and haw'd for a minute and then said "what do I call it when I'm referring to your, uhh umm you know, "sexuality"? I snickered and said that he could call me anything he wanted, he could call me a moho, a queer, a fag, even gay so long as he didn't refer to me as just plain ol Rich. We laughed as he realized that I was telling him that I am just me, gay? str8? it doenst matter, I am Rich! I asked him when was the last time I referred to him as a Hetro ? Though I am definitely Gay, Gay is not who I am, it is what I am. He called me tonight to tell me now excited his wife and kids are to have me coming. Out of a family of eight they are the only ones who thus far accept me, Gay-ity and all.

Friday, February 19, 2010

The Old Guard Has Got To Die

. . .Before there will be change, "The Old Guard Has Got To Die Off"! Watch the video and think about the impact of this statement within the MoHo community? I don't mean this in a bad way, but I do think that we will see things change when the next generation takes more leadership roles within the church.

No wonder I love Judge Judy!

Thursday, February 18, 2010

Finding The Right Diamond part 1

Before buying my first diamond I went to the Library and spent a fair amount of time researching diamonds. I then met with a gemologist to get his input on how to find the right diamond, what to look for, and how NOT to be deceived. Good diamonds are expensive and I wanted to insure myself that I was buying the right diamond, that I was not wasting my money on a fake, a forgery, or on a low grade diamond of a value that did not match it's claim. Before embarking upon my research I had gone to a few diamond stores in search of "The Ring", what I discovered was a bunch of men who were out to sell a diamond, they did not care about me nor did they care about the time and effort I had put into earning the money I was about to spend, they merely cared about the "Money" they were going to make off my purchase. It seemed that they were pushing lower grade diamonds that cost them less money at a higher price in order to escalate their profit margin. I was tired of their outward appearance and claims of truth and honesty when their inner soul was full of nothing but greed even at the cost of deception. They were so full of hunger for money that they lied like a closeted gay moho trying to hide his true identity from his family, church and friends. Sorry for the analogy but often a closeted gay moho will do anything to keep these people from discovering the truth. How do I know this? Been there done that as have many of you. Anyway back to the diamond story. I wanted to find an honest salesman but knew that unless I had some connexions, there would be no way of knowing for sure if I could trust the man before me. Therefore I must go in armed with the knowledge and understanding necessary in order to make a wise investment. So I educated myself, found an establishment which was known for selling product at a fair price and went in for the purchase. In the end I came out with a great diamond of good value at a more than fair price.

I have discovered that shopping for Mr Right, IE dating, has quite a bit in common with the diamond shopping game. Recently I have exited a number of Jewelry Stores, metaphorically speaking of course, totally and completely bewildered with what the shop keepers are trying to peddle. I am at odds with the lack of moral standard within the gay community. (OK so it's not just the gay community but that is what I am currently dealing with) Don't get me wrong I am not trying to claim the better than thou, self righteous piety, in your face, your a bad person, everybody be a prude type of thing. I merely want to find someone who respects themselves enough to set limits and adhere to them. Well, at least try to adhere to them, we are all human and fall short of our self imposed standards at times. No problem with that, but when SEX becomes the only object of focus and one is willing to do anything IE lie, cheat, betray friends, etc, in order to fulfill their selfish lusts then that individual has lost the very part of his soul which differentiates us from the beasts. Believe me folks my lusts, my sex drive, my desire to have my desires fulfilled, are as strong as any. Yet this voice deep within tells me that lines have to be drawn, that there are certain things which should be shared only within and under the right circumstance with the right person. It is up to each individual to conclude what and where those lines need be drawn. Why should we as gay men be any different when it comes to standards? Granted the whole sex thing is different when one is gay in our culture. For the str8 man is told to hold to his purity and then one day he will marry and share this part of his life with his wife. He has something to look forward to during his sexually explosive moments when he just wants to get his rocks off. For if he/she refrains he/she may reserve something dear for his/her partner to be. As Gay Mormon Men we are told that we will not have the opportunity to share in this experience during this lifetime, that we must remain celibate and faithful to the end. Within the gay community marriage is not an option to be extended at this time. therefore many say what the hell why not do whatever, whenever, wherever? I do not believe that God desires to withhold this part of life from us, but I do believe that he expects us to hold to certain standards. Exactly what those standard are I am not yet sure but I do adhere to the idea that Promiscuity is not the answer.

Recently I have discovered that one who I looked upon as a true friend has merely been using me to get what he wants. This person has walked over, and through me in order to get to the people who would fulfill his needs. He has used me to try to get to my friends who he "Wants" bad. I have some great friends who I enjoy spending time with. They are full of life and accept me for who and what I am. (And they do not chastise me for doing things such as buying a motorcycle) They think it's awesome that I am going skydiving. They have not forgotten that life is fun and can be full of excitement. I have a great love and respect for these individuals. I am at awe that my friend would try to use me to get to these people when he has nothing in mind other than fulfilling his SEXual lusts, he doesn't care who he hurts along the way so long as he gets what he wants. He is totally pissed at me right now because I refuse to introduce him to my friends. What kind of a person would I be if I set a predator free amongst my friends.

I know I am rambling, the ramblings of a crazed gay MoHo, but these issues have become quite serious to me. I am witnessing the results of some of my friends who are living a dual life, which by so doing contributes to a life of unbridled passion. For much like a pressure cooker when the heat is on and the steam is building the pot will explode if not for the pressure release valve. So I have seen with many of my friends still trying to hide in the closet, the pressure builds until the pot is ready to explode and great will be the explosion thereof sending shards and shrapnel into all within it's path. I believe my friend has so much built up pressure inside that he can no longer contain it and he is in the process of exploding. I believe that in a way coming out is like opening the release valve and allowing the pot to breathe. This is only one of the many reasons I have become an advocate of coming out of the closet.

If I am searching for a diamond of value to share my life then should I not take effort to keep mine own polished and chip free in order to offer another a diamond of value rather than a worn out, chipped piece of garbage which holds no value. Once again I am not suggesting that sex has no place in the dating world, I get just as excited and turned on as the next guy. But seriously folks can't we show some restraint. I find myself wondering how many people feel as I do on the matter or am I merely a prude. I do not agree with the "Evergreen" philosophy but then neither do I agree with the "anything goes" way of thinking. There has got to be a happy middle ground. It is obvious from some of my recent posts that this matter has been on my mind as of late.

This ranting Gay Mormon has gone on long enough so I will end this post, for now anyway! Next post I will return to the diamond analogy.

Sunday, February 14, 2010

A Walking Spiritual ZOMBIE

Today was one of those days when you awake in such deep thought that your mind is going ten million places all at once. I have often imagined what it might be like at the judgement bar when ones eyes are opened and your whole life is placed before you? When I was younger I imagined it might be like watching a movie for all the world to see with people pointing, judging and laughing? Later I thought it much the same but just between myself, God and some of my earthy appointed leaders, who after all had stewardship over the right to help judge me, did they not?

During a person interview with my stake president following my "one day" marriage, the man informed me that he had received a personal witness during his prayers the night before. He told me that the Lord, through the spirit, had borne "witness" to him that the reason for my wanting to end the marriage after one day was that I had committed grievous sins for which I had not repented, that I had "lied" to my leaders during interviews. He went on to tell me that this was my chance to come clean, to tell the truth, to confess my sins before the Lord. He informed me that the day would come when he would "stand as a witness" at my judgment bar and that should I not choose to take advantage of this opportunity to confess my sins that he would profess to the Lord that I had been given the opportunity to come clean and had refused. I informed him that I had committed no such sins, there had been no grievous sins committed for the which I had not previously confessed to the proper church authority. Deep inside I knew he was referring to the fact that I was attracted to men, I thought of all the times I had "felt" bad feelings and thought evil sexual thoughts involving men. I thought that he was referring to one particular missionary who I had experienced some really bad things with, "in my mind". For not once had I acted on these desires, but they were present, and I was convinced that this was why the Lord had condemned me through this stake president. And with the lethal, condemning judgment spewing forth from this man there was no way I was going to tell him that I was attracted to men, I would rather have died first. I knew that I was going to hell anyway for what I felt inside and this was the day I sort of committed internal suicide, I became a walking Spiritual Zombie, no life inside merely a physical body with an empty core.

I lived this way for over ten years before beginning to realize that I wasn't the evil person I had been taught that I was. What a tragedy it is that many good righteous young souls have to live this way when they have done nothing wrong. I hope that any who feel as I did, any who may have already committed internal suicide may read these words and know that they are not alone. If any of you reading this have ever felt this way my desire is that you might know of the life that is possible for you to "LIVE" once you have come to understand and accept the good within. Being a Gay man is not a bad thing, having attractions to people of the same sex is not what is going to condemn you. How you feel about who you are will direct how you feel about the Lord and His ability to Love you, and that will eventually be what either condemns one or opens him up to a wonderful life. For if you loathe yourself how can you come to accept that the Lord loves you? I believed that the Lord loved all, except me, that his atoning sacrifice was available to all, except me. How can one ever truly serve his master when he places such restrictions upon him? For too many years I had no faith when it came to my Elder Brother and his ability to love me. I now know that he does love me, the complete gay, queer, homosexual, SSA, whatever you like to refer to me as, son of God. I am no longer a walking Zombie! The internal Rich has indeed been Born Again and received new life. This is what has happened as a direct result of accepting myself and coming out of my hiding place, the closet as to which it is often referred. Everyday life still has its moments, I often feel like I am riding an eternal roller-coaster, but now there is a foundation upon which to stand when the winds howl and the rains seem to flood my ground.

Tuesday, February 9, 2010

Unwelcome and Unwanted

A fellow MOHO made the comment on FB today that he feels Unwelcome and Unwanted. Ever feel those sentiments? As I mentioned in my last post this has been an up and down journey much like riding a high speed roller coaster. I am sorry that he is made to feel that way when he is such a fine young man. Finding your place within the gay community can be a difficult thing. Granted there are many ready and willing to help when it is needed but it is still difficult finding a place were you fit in, a place which feels like home. I can only speak for myself, but I imagine it is similar for most of you out there, when I say that loneliness often haunts the recently out of the closet gay man. I can't speak for you seasoned outers for I have not been there yet.

I have noticed a pattern as of late when it comes to my making new friends within the gay community, a pattern which I do not necessarily like and am at odds as to how to change it. This past year has been spent going new places, trying new things, meeting new people, and striving to ignite new friendships with people whom I feel a kinship. I have sought out people who seem to have the same standards I hold dear, people who for one reason or another you just Like right from the beginning. I know making friends takes time, but dang it gets lonely out there. I have often been referred to as a social butterfly flittering here and there constantly on the go with this friend and that. As I have mentioned in previous posts my social life has been completely turned upside down since coming out, even those friends who seem to accept my being gay have changed, though they profess support, the invitations have all but ceased and when I stop by to see them there is a rift that was not present prior to my coming out.

One of these days I will discover what it is I am doing to put people off, I often wonder if perhaps I come on too strong, or maybe seem to needy, or possibly, I am just weird? (hopefully the later is not the case but I do need to consider all possibilities) It is hard losing your friends and family without new ones to take their place. I have met some fantastic new friends yet have not been able to find "my place" yet. This has been a fantastic year! And perhaps the upcoming year will bring with it more opportunities to grow and eventually find my niche in this crazy yet wonderful gay community.

Thursday, February 4, 2010

Love in the Air

Last October I wrote a post titled "Safety Net". In this post I talked about not needing the safety net of weight and how after having "come out" I began accepting myself and loving the person I saw looking back in the mirror each morning. Before I knew it I was losing weight and taking care of myself for the first time in over 10 years. At the time I wrote the post I had lost about 80 some odd pounds. Here it is roughly 3 months later and that number has hit just over 120. This past year has been amazing? It has been filled with Joy, Sorrow, Happiness and Pain. It has brought love and understanding into my life and yet I have experienced more hate and ignorance than I ever knew existed. I have learned that those who you thought loved you the most have the power to hurt you the most. I have learned that there are pure righteous individuals residing within the Gay community who have a sincere desire to just plain be Good! i have discovered that truth is not necessarily what I always thought it to be. And through it all I have come to Love myself, truly love the person inside! The Gay, fun loving, risk taking, little socialite that lives within this carcass is a pretty decent guy! And that knowledge is worth all the pain and sorrow felt along the way of gaining it. One of the rewards I promised myself for reaching 120 was to go skydiving, so guess were this boy is going the second week in march? I found this jumping school in Mesquite, NV that is supposed to be one of the best in the country. I'm actually jumping out an airplane and am skinny enough to do it. Well I will admit, we're not skinny yet, but skinny enough to jump. Actual goal weight of 170 will be next July or August. How could I have known that coming out was the best way to lose weight ever? Anyway I just wanted to talk about what an incredible journey this has been and express my thanks and love for my new found MOHO and just plain HO friends. You have helped to make this difficult journey much better and easier to endure. I look back at a post I wrote describing a time in my life when I just wanted to die, and I am sooooo thankful that I never followed through with that desire. (Suicide)

I now know what it feels like to go on a date with someone who you think is "kinda cute". I know what it feels like to sit on a couch with 8 gay guys so scrunched that no one can move and to feel of the love present among good friends. It scares me that I might have never known the joy of holding a mans hand while on a romantic walk through the park. Or what it feels like to have your bo holding tight as you cruise down the highway on the motorcycle. I have felt the darkest of dark, I "KNOW" what it feels like to want to die! I also know what it feels like to work your way through those times and to live. I now know what it feels like to love and be loved. I now know what it feels like to actually like who you are. Being Gay is a good thing, and don't ever allow anyone to convince you otherwise. Just listen to your heart, it will tell the truth and once you know the truth follow the direction in which it guides you. These are just some of the lessons I have learned over the last year through my "Coming Out"!

Monday, February 1, 2010

Richard Defined!

I got the following definition of my name from an online dictionary and thought it was pretty funny:

I have taken the liberty of changing all references to females to that of males instead. ie she to he, girlfriend to boy friend etc.

Proper noun/n: A common but in a form of name in a sense of dominance; In most cases, the Letter "R" in its capital form shows a form of difference, but yet the name Richard is commonly used in human labeling. Richard is commonly reffered to as "Dick", which in fact is the nickname. Though some humor this fact, they tend to avoid the symbolism of the male dominance in the name, and the effect of impact in speech. The name, almost as other names, when introduced in a conversation, people who are in ear's reach of it would react to the specific name. In a way of hetero paradigm, Richard could be a "normal" living a "normal" life; A Richard could be reading this exact definition due to curiosity or suggestion or boredom; A Richard could have been born to the Earth to change it, to revolutionize, to excel and leave his mark upon the world. There is no proof nor evidence to the true definition of Richard, judging by the obvious fact that a person defines the term "Richard" in their own way..

Not only is Dick a nickname for Richard but Richard is another name for Dick, usually a homosexual who can't say his own name correctly but pronounces it "Wichard" because he has a speech impediment. (What's funny is that I spent part of my elementary years in speach therapy because I couldn't say my "R's" right! I pronounced my name "Wichard" for many years!)

Tall, almost towering, large features, arms, legs. Beautiful heart. Kind, usually reserved about sharing his feelings. Although he is able to communicate well, he feels much more deeply than he speaks. Only those that are close to him will ever really know him. Will see 'it' through even if he is unhappy, his commitment unwavering. Will make many mistakes believing he has made a 'wise' choice. Realizes logic does not bring happiness. Falls in love only once, usually shocking (completely different upbringings) to him. When he does find him, he is relentless in his pursuit. However, it is not calculating, unconsciously he maneuvers his actions to allow himself to be with him. A strong, powerful force, a positive energy, other men are always questioning, "what's so great about Richard?". Spiritual leader. Excellent lover, very good with his entire body, making men fantasize about him regularly. A very thick, yummy kisser. Richard is a kind, good, lovely, beautiful, sweet, aggressive, sensitive man with a consecrated heart. They are pretty fun and outgoing people, and like to sit around playing video games or the guitar until they get a boyfriend. They are always on time, and very loyal companions.

1. another word for sexy beast
2. someone who likes to laugh a lot
3. my babycakes

Instead of calling somebody a dick, call them a richard "Hey, look over there! Its a Richard" "Man, when Bob drinks, he really becomes a richard."

Whether I am Richard or not is irrelevant, but the definition of my full purpose is the road I must follow to become the "Richard" I want to define.