Tuesday, June 5, 2007

Acceptance

I thought maybe we might generate more discussion if I posted a single topic to comment on. (thank you, Sean, for the good suggestion). More topics to follow, but I thought I would start with a less controversial one.
  • Acceptance
OK, you have finally accepted that you are gay. Now what?

It's something we've all gone through - the day when we had to face the undeniable fact that we like boys more than girls. We may have had suspicions for months, even years, before that day. But, the day ultimately came when we sat ourselves down and said "self - your gay!"

What then?

  • What are some things you did which you feel were good and would recommend to others?
  • What things you did that you later regretted?
  • Are there things you read that were helpful?
  • Are there things you wish you could have read that would have been helpful?
  • Are there things you read that you now wish you hadn't?
  • If a friend confided in you "I've decided that I'm gay", what counsel would you give them?
Let the commenting begin ...

5 comments:

Abelard Enigma said...

I'll start the discussion by commenting on my own post.

I'm a bit different than most because I was married and had grown children by the time I finally accepted being gay. The first thing I did was to search for other gay Mormon's. Unfortunately, it seems that most of what you find out there is anti-church.

I found, and got involved with, the q-saints yahoo discussion group (sponsored by Affirmation). I don't mean to sound critical; but, when someone posts to q-saints and expresses a desire to stay active in church, some people comment and ridicule the notion, some may even question your honesty and integrity. I even received a couple of private emails inquiring as to where I lived and if I was interested in some hanky panky.

Fortunately, for me, that was not what I was looking for. I was searching for people like me - gay, but desiring to stay active in the church.

So, my advice to a nouveau gay Mormon, be very careful about who you meet on the internet.

Sean said...

my first question (then answer) for "acceptance" is to ask the question "why must we accepte being gay?"

my answer to that would be the same if i was speaking of my work. I own the work i do. it is a part of me just like everything else.

Accepting being gay doesnt give you an automatic diploma in fashion, grooming or decorating. but you have to accept it in order to "love" yourself.

this is what I struggled with most of my life. i hated myself because i was gay (even when i didnt acknowledge that i was gay).

when i first accepted that i was gay i wanted it all. i soon realized that like everything else that I own there are limits.

accepting that your gay doesn't mean you have the preconceived labels that go with it. you get to deciede what type of gay person you want to be.

you can be active in the church, you can continue in your marriage, or you may leave these things. but dont do something just because your gay. make the choice.

its your story. you get to choose what goes into the plot or not. when you make those choices accept those consequences. I know that word has some negative connotation to it but honestly consequences dont have to be negative.

Love is the underlying princple of the Gospel of Christ. An yes you must also love yourself.

talk to someone who will accept you for all of what you want in your life. it will help just to talk.

anyway. this is getting long.

thanks Abelard for putting this up. it gets me thinking as well.

Stephen said...

I think the answer to "what then" is to realize that you have to put limits on yourself, just like you would with anything else. Your standards don't really need to change that much at all.

If you had already decided not to just go and have sex with any and every girl in the neighborhood, you probably should apply that to guys too.

So, I say set limits on yourself as to what is and isn't acceptable, and never use your sexuality as an excuse for something else. "I'm gay, so I might as well drink" is a terrible argument, so don't even make it.

Beck said...

I spent two decades beating myself up! I became a PRO at it. I couldn't "accept" that I was gay because doing so would mean that I was "unnatural, unworthy, a pervert" etc. Those terms I used to distance myself from myself became unbearable as I realized I wasn't changing, that this was who I was. But, I wasn't unnatural, unworthy or a pervert! I was just me. Once I accepted that, and came to love me for who I am, and not some societal labels superimposed on me, I realized nothing really changed but for the self-loathing stopping.

There is a need for "acceptance" with oneself. That idea of hating yourself and thinking that you are unworthy because of who you are, is the greatest tool that can be used against us.

So, my advice is to learn to love yourself in a way that will counter all the self-loathing that will come.

In the end, after "accepting" myself for who I am, I really am the same person. I still put limits on my behavior. I still like the same likes I had before... but I don't beat myself up for just being me.

GeckoMan said...

Accepting that you are gay means you can now open up to yourself and others, and not stay in a box of someone else's conventions. It's becoming comfortable in the clothes you choose to wear. It's allowing yourself to be vulnerable and being OK with that. Acceptance of 'gayness' is choosing to be happy with yourself, despite all odds.