Friday, November 16, 2012

We're in Salt Lake. For cake and donuts. Oh yeah, and for a conference.

Important: The following post links to two companies. These are not paid advertisements. We promise. We just love these companies and this conversation actually happened.

So, yesterday I found myself, yet again, in the airport about to go to Salt Lake. The following conversation ensued as we waited to board the plane:

Lolly: I'm so excited!!! (claps hands)

Me: The thing that's funny about that is that most people would think you're excited about your trip. But really, you're just excited about cake.

Lolly: Schmidt's Bakery Cottage makes heaven in the form of buttercream frosting. There is nothing else like it. Anywhere. Especially Seattle.

Me: Yes. I get it. And that's why you have two large empty Tupperwares taking up space in our suitcase.

Lolly: Um, are you serious? Do you seriously not know how this works?

Me: What do you mean...?

Lolly: Hon, those Tupperwares are not for the cake. They are for my Dunford Donuts. The empty bag in our suitcase is for my carry-on of cake. s. Cakes. Plural. The donuts will be safely individually wrapped in baggies inside the Tupperwares. Obviously.

Me: Wait, we're getting donuts as well?

Lolly: We aren't getting donuts. I'm getting donuts. And cakes. For me. I'm not sure what you might be getting.

Me: I'm getting worried about space in our luggage for the return trip...

Lolly: It's understandable, I suppose. But don't worry. I'll make it work. (Leans over and gives me a kiss)(Looks at me with concern) Did my breath smell bad? Was it the onions in my sandwich?

Me: No, you're fine.

Lolly: It's just that you looked a little repulsed...

Me (whispering): You do realize we are currently in line to board a plane to Salt Lake City, Utah, where we will be speaking about our true love and intimate relationship even though I'm gay. Maybe "repulsed" is a poor word choice?

Lolly: Perhaps. But you did look repulsed.

Me: I'm not repulsed! I'm distracted. By all the Tupperware and bags. (Leans over and gives Lolly a kiss).

Lolly: That's more like it. That may have just earned you a Dunford Donut.

Me (whispering affectionately into Lolly's ear): I plan to steal several...

Lolly: Dunford Donut rescinded! Help! Robbery!

Me: You don't even have the donuts yet.

Lolly: And apparently you never will.


So here's the flyer for the thingamabob tomorrow. Please come! There's going to be seating for a LOT of people, and also, I'd love to meet you. Seriously, you. I want to meet you.


  1. The sweetness factor exuded here between you two is only upstaged by....the cake and donuts! All the best at this conference.

  2. I really appreciate this post because I have been looking for good donuts for about 10 years or so now. (I guess people in Wyoming don't know how to make donuts that are not stale.) time I'm in SLC I will find this Dunford Donuts place and get some. Thank you!

  3. That's what I look forward to on trips too, the food. By the way, when in San Diego, you must- MUST- try Bibby's Crepe Cafe in La Jolla, and Tandoor (Indian restaurant). And apparently I must try Schmidts and Dunfords! Thanks!

  4. Hmmmmm? Interesting that we just heard today that the Hostess plant is Utah is closing. Maybe they just can't compete with Schmidts & Dunfords. ;) (all joking aside, I am, however, sad for all those people who are going to be out of work)

  5. Opps! - Me again, I forgot to say, Good luck at the Conference, I know it will be great. Love to you both.

  6. I take it Lolly has never had donuts from Top Pot? Come on, those are by far the best donuts and you can't get them outside of the Seattle area. Heck, I only live 35 miles from Seattle and I have to make a trip north to get them.

    1. Seattle donuts topped with pot? That didn't take long.

    2. No, there's no pot in the donuts. The story behind the name is that it came from sign that said Topspot, which was on a defunct Chinese restaurant. They bought the sign and left it to rust in the backyard for four years. When they took it to be restored, the S fell off.

      As to Washington state's recent legalisation of pot, it's really more about decriminalisation as to possession of small amounts for personal use.


    Don't forget Mrs. Backer's cakes!!! :D

  8. Why is it that the part of the flyer about Josh and Lolly only says that they appeared on Nightline? Donuts!!! Do they ever get to spend time at home? I do like the way Lolly thinks, why let part of the trip go to waste when you can bring home cake and donuts... Good luck at the Conference, I'd go if not for the thousands of miles and lack of money...

  9. Wow. Another conference.on homosexuality! And on how people can overcome it.

  10. Do you know what order you will be presenting? I can't go to the whole conference, and I was wondering if I would miss you.

  11. I worked at Schmidt's about 16 years ago, which actually seems like a different lifetime. It's actually Schmidt's Pastry Cottage but that's okay. ;)
    I worked there in 1996 during the day and did phone surveys at night across the street. I recall that this was around the same time that the students of East High got together with the ACLU to form a gay straight alliance. It was met with a lot of protest and the only way the parents or faculty or whomever could stop it was to ban all extra circular activities at the school. I can't remember exactly what happened but I know it was being considered and the students staged a walk out. I remember doing a phone survey on it. I remember a lot of people would have rather gotten rid of everything than have a gay straight alliance. Working that job, I also made my first gay acquaintances / friends- one of whom was in a relationship with the boss. He was gay. Hated my guts because I was always bringing my conservative rags to work to read in the break room. "To Renew America" and one that had famous quotes by Pat Buchanan, who I preferred to Dole at the time. He was a bitch to me but it's kind of hard to fault him for it. The fact that he hated me so didn't make my work experience any easier. One night he was being such a catty bitch to me that I had had enough of double jobs and I quit on the spot. Walked out. But my other gay friend from work was fun. He was more patient with me. Possibly more than I deserved. I once commented to him: Man! You must really love rainbows because I see them all over your car and everywhere! I had spent the past few years living in Vegas but was still pretty naive. Since I finally knew some gay people, I was forced to think more consciously about what was so wrong about it. I remember calling home and asking my dad one night because I wanted to understand why homosexuality was supposedly so much worse than your run of the mill sexual "transgressions". He told me that it was worse than because it ran opposite to the family. That didn't seem right to me because then, I reasoned, simply refraining from having kids by choice should be thought of as really bad. And I knew it was discouraged in the LDS community but not vilified. But I figured that my dad's explanation was probably the best I was going to get so I put my doubts on the proverbial shelf. During those years I met all sorts of different types including an atheist who became my best friend and then husband, which was somewhat of a controversy and not without a lot of reservation on my part. To say that's the "Readers Digest" version of the story is the understatement of the year. It took me a good amount of time to be open to it. It's not what I had planned for my life. Not what I was aggressively taught I should want for my life. Took a long time to reconcile that. It was heartbreaking. Worth the heartbreak, but still just horrible having to choose. So there's I guess another person who was patient with me.
    Sometimes I feel happy that things have seemingly progressed since those kids at East High and the ACLU stood up to the local conservatives for change. But then I see that the LDS church is still holding seminars like this. There is a really fine line, IMHO, between affirming all different types of families and making efforts to promote this type of thing in the year 2012. I guess I feel that if there are already families in existence and people want to spare their children the trauma of divorce, that's a worthy goal. And of course some people might legitimately and independently choose this type of arrangement without any fear or coercion. But I also hate to see this encouraged- no matter how I personally like Josh and Lolly. I really don't know what the church's interest is in having these conferences. I hope that they're at least terribly honest about the challenges.

    1. I really enjoyed reading your post, Bjorge Queen. I, too, wonder why these conferences even exist. I'm not exactly opposed to them but the reasoning behind it doesn't exactly add up to me. The church certainly singles homosexuality out as some kind of a threat to their very existence when they could easily take a much more positive approach.


  12. I took a box of pastries from Schmidt's home to visit my family on the plane with me once but it wasn't in a Tupperware or anything. Just on my lap. Had to fight the flight attendants off the whole time. ;)

    1. You're back! I was wondering what had happened to you, and it is nice to see that you are the same as always. I bet fighting the flight attendants made it all the more worthwhile.

    2. Esel I came to realize it is not in my nature to STFU. I'm embracing it for now. This comment section needs more silly liberal heretics.

    3. I still have a ways to go for I'll fully embrace saying whatever pops into of my head... but being a silly liberal (I'm only somewhat heretical, and that is from my childhood...) I can do, though I find it more entertaining to play the devil's advocate in any given conversation. I also greatly appreciate that you respond. Did you really tell your friend that "you must really love rainbows"? How did he handle it?

    4. It was a long time ago but I'm pretty sure everyone laughed at me.
      He was fun. Didn't take things too seriously. Grabbed my boob at a party one time because things were getting dull. I yelled at him and he was all WHAT? and it was so innocently it really was convincing.

      I actually don't say everything that pops into ny head. It's just that after everything is filtered out there's still a lot of crazy shi t leftover.

    5. I guess I don't know you well enough, but if I had been in your position, he would have had some serious injuries, followed by the same "WHAT?" and innocent act... I fear the day you decide to let loose and free all of what you have in your head... it almost seems tempting... and follow that line of thought, now seems like and excellent time to take a shower and change into clothes that don't have orphan blood on them.

    6. Well, I really don't think I am that bad. But that's just my opinion of myself. I guess you're free to disagree.

    I don't know where my old copy is but it looks like I could get another for 63 cents on amazon.

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    1. And that, my friend, is saying something. This $hit has gone too far even for Tammy. lol.
      I, on the other hand, am becoming desensitized to it. (Much like they say one can become desensitized to pernogrify only less fun).
      Oh, look. Somebody is being ignorant in their effort to advance antequated values.
      I have mixed feelings about my desensitization. Maybe the universe us trying to do me a favor and help my brain not overheat and explode. That could be good right?
      Maybe I just know that progress will not be stopped so it's no biggie.

    2. Hurray, you've reached that wonderful point where it just doesn't matter... but it gets better, especially if you mix it with a false cheerfulness and optimism... it makes sharing medical stories a blast, and the economy... my word, we are all doomed, isn't it wonderful? Of course, if you become too desensitized that you don't even try to change things than progress sort of grinds to a halt...

    3. I'm being tongue in cheek. The past months have taught me that I'll never be able to stop caring even if such emotional involvement ledt ubchecked will be the cause of my own demise. The only reason I'm not writing this from a ditch half drunk is because Obama won. This is me with optimism. The caring will slowly kill me through ulcers and other such ailments, rest assured. Hopefully I'll have had some impact but outlook sketchy.

    4. I can fully understand the ulcer part, at least to a degree, and I am glad that you are killing yourself slowly by caring, sometimes it gets easy to slip into a world of complete disregard, even when things are against me... better then despair I guess. I decided I didn't care who won the election, being upset wouldn't have changed anything and I think that the upset part is one of the problems with our nation, we want our President (whoever that is) and if we don't get it we will pout like petulant children... sorry, that wasn't entirely kind, but I'm fed up with both parties complaining so much, it isn't like either candidate would have had the full support of Congress... now I'm just droning one, sorry...

    5. Personally I reject the idea that it doesn't matter because all politicians are corrupt. I think all politicians are flawed to some extent like every human being on the planet. But I'm excited for the next four years.

  15. Evergreen is one of the sponsor I notice. These kinds of things are always worded so vaguely - itwould be potentially a problem, I guess, if they wrote 'Same sex attractions can be overcome and here are some who have done it and their spouses. And the overcomers are all therapists so that adds to their credibility.''
    So instead buzz words: 'same sex attraction'' ''reconciled their feelings and their traditional moral values''' And the apparent absence of any same sex couples speaking about how they are living happily and with faith.
    And the 'current thinking about sexual orientation change therapy'' - which even if the conference has speakers who speak uot against reparative therapy, it almost becomes meaningless.
    Josh, in the context of that flyer, you are looking like their poster boy for a gay man who can happily be in a straight marriage. Even if your presentation is all about forgiveness and loving unconditionally, you are now literally a poster boy on a poster.
    BQ to celebrate yourofficial return I will officially bring back my name!

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    3. I knew we couldn't stay away, Karen!

      Josh I think you should blow off this conference. I'll even take you and Lolly out to Cafe Rio and then we can go across the street and get a pink cookie from Schmidts. (My mom has nearly duplucated their recipe.) Finest cuisine Taylorsville has to offer. Don't associate with these tools. (I read reviews on that one woman's book and I don't think this is where you want to align yourself. )

    4. MOR straight graduateNovember 16, 2012 at 10:09 PM

      Yes! Stand up fir yourself and everything you have done so far. Runnnn! This undermines so much and takes your credibility. If you refuse to be used and stay away on principle you will make a huge statement. Go along to their panel and you will make another statement which will be heard with a quiet ripple as some of your bravery, pioneering and principles slip quietly back into submission.

      I can only hope that you put this flyer in front of us when you did not show others because somewhere inside of you this was not sitting right.

      Be brave!

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    6. Why can't people just be themselves or make their own choices?????? U cry gay rights and we here are listening, and then u turn around with disdain for anyone who is ssa and heaven forbid CHOOSES to be in an mor. Is it not the least bit hypocritical??? Why does it have to be ONLY heterosexual marriages or gay marriages?? I just can't believe this nonsense. Why can josh and others like him not tell their story? Unbelievable

    7. MOR straight graduateNovember 17, 2012 at 1:09 AM

      Tammy and Joanne, I am so against him speaking! I posted below

      Anon 10:57. I was myself, and I did make my own choices. Informed by a collection of snake oil salesmen like Evergreen and Northstar I believed my boyfriend's gayness could be put aside and we could live happily ever after. He believed it too. Tragic ending. As it is for most ( not all, I totally get that it works for a slim minority of the already tiny minority that are MORs). For most it ends badly, with divorce and children of divorce.

      So I am not saying only heterosexual or only gay marriages. I am saying, as Josh has repeatedly said that his path is not for everyone. But this conference is pitching it as the one size fits all solution for gays. Read the words... "previously same sex attracted (past tense) now in an opposite sex marriage ( current tense). Josh has spent six months politely and repeatedly explaining that a) SSA is a bit misleading ,let's just accept it and call it gay. b) the gay is in the present as well as the past.

      I do not have disdain for people in an MOR. I have joy and celebration for those like Josh who are IMHO going to last, deepest sympathy and btdt understanding for those who will not last and a driving desire to tell the truth to those who are not yet married but considering it.

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  16. Wish I could come. That would be interesting to hear. Good luck!

  17. Okay, Josh, feeling weirdly like an internet detective. But this conference you have chosen to be at hs me genuinely concerned.
    You wrote this in 2007 - 'This is not to say that I think that marriage in this life is the final solution for all gay men and women—sometimes marriage is something that eludes individuals of any type or kind. But I do wish to imply that it truly is possible for those who want it."
    It's the last sentence that concerns me - is it possible for all who want it? You do go on to say that such a marriage would require groundwork, commitment, etc. Are you or are you not acting as a role model?

    1. *eyeroll* yawn

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    3. The question is what is meant by "possible"? It is possible that I will win the lottery next week. That doesn't mean I think I will. (I don't actually play, just using an example)
      "Possible" can mean different things.

    4. @Rivka. That parsing of words reminds me of Bill Clinton was questioned about Monica Lewinsky, he wanted to debate what 'is. is. Josh knows what possible means and to write that he thinks it truly is possible for those who want it means, I think, that he thinks it is possible for those who truly want it.

  18. That conversations sounds just like my husband and me! Very funny! I really wish I could go to that conference tomorrow! I'll be in SL all day, but not heading that far south :( Good luck! And thanks for the info about that cake and donut shop! Will have to try it out soon!

  19. Why Josh, WHY?! Why would you speak at something like that?

  20. Wait- am I picking you up from the airport?? I should be. And I should be getting donuts for it. And Schmidts. (after all, JT did try to order one for you in the Hospital with Tessa... so I guess JT deserves the treats not me.) Have fun eating your way through SLC! *jealous*

  21. Go Josh and Lolly! You guys will be amazing tomorrow! Good luck! And while you're in Provo you should check out Shirley's Bakery on Freedom Blvd I believe. Cinnamon rolls from heaven. Anyway, good luck tomorrow! You two are amazing! Praying for you and your family!

  22. Important question, will there be doughnuts AT this conference? Because if so, then my desire to actually wake up at 9:00am on a Saturday to come to it is increased tenfold. ;)

  23. Ugh! That's not far at all. I might peak in for the first few minutes before I run to work. My curiosity will probably get the better of it usually does.

  24. Darn it, I have to go grocery shopping. If I'd had more warning, I think I could have made it. I hope it goes well for you two.

  25. It is surreal reading these comments. Some folks have genuine questions and concerns and others are just barrelling past those. Kinda like someone saying 'your participation in this conference I find devsstating.'' Then someone else says ''awesome conference! I'll bring donuts.''
    Oh Josh

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    2. For what it's worth, i had a longer comment that I thought I sent. But I must have not in the end. I was on the cusp of a tension migraine so I'm not sure what I did or didn't do to be honest.

      My general desire is to completely refrain from judgment until I've seen a bit of it or heard a little for myself. It's how I usually roll. I don't trust second-hand information, concerns, and speculation as to what it is or isn't. My general experience is that they're usually off in some way. And sometimes they're very wrong. If I know nothing about the topic at hand then I need to learn about it first before diving into answering anything.

      The only thing I know for sure is from what I've read about them previously. And I've read a bit from all of them (not that much, I don't think, about mathessen though). I'm curious because they all have differing opinions on the topic even though they've reached some similar decisions in life (the obvious one being MOR). So I'm curious how that plays out.

    3. I don't think people are trying to ignore important questions. I think they cannot answer questions about why Josh would participate or what his goals are or what he is possible thinking.

      So they are tossing support to Josh.

      I am personally hoping that Josh and Lolly will tell their own story. The hard parts, the great parts, and explain (like they always have) that a MOR is not something for everyone. And you cannot pray away the gay or be cured from it.

      I don't much about evergreen except that many gay people HATE it. I think Josh might be able to bring a level head to such a conference and maybe even help evergreen become more what y'all think it should be.

  26. MOR straight graduateNovember 17, 2012 at 12:53 AM

    Josh, at the CTW conference you told us it took real courage to go there, to walk in there, to stand up there. Congrats and kudos for doing it.

    Tomorrow morning I think you need just as much courage and this time I think you need it to walk away.

    Look at what they are saying. With your name and picture underneath. "have experienced same sex attraction", "now in an opposite sex marriage". Like the SSA, the gayness is in the past. So not true. So not what you say.

    Read the fine print and tell them they contradict you and you cannot endorse them.

    Please. And I think you will sleep better in the long run if you do so.

    1. You know, I think Josh knows full well what the subject is and who the other speakers are, but I have decided to trust him and his incredible humanity. I severely doubt he will be saying that it is the easiest thing to follow his example or encourage it for everyone. Honestly, he is an adult capable of making his own decisions and so far he has yet to do anything that I find detestable or recriminating (that is a word?). If the other speakers and groups are as bad as so many are pointing out, then isn't it best that Josh be there to temper the mix? And donuts really are worth waking up before nine, so are flea markets (speaking of which, I had best be getting ready).

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    3. On with it then, I would like to know all about it, but you are right Tammy, the general ignorant masses don't know Josh and all, so they may very well jump to conclusions... I might have faith in Josh, but trusting the world at large to make the right assumption is ridiculous... still, I hope that he was moderating voice, perhaps a contrary voice to those others... patience... I hate patience!

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  27. I'm guessing their will be a follow up post to help quell all these questions and concerns which I am right there with you. It's nice to see people showing concern for Josh, he has some great people cheering him on on here. Hmmm maybe I will call him and get the answers before everyone else! Muahahaha! I kid I kid. If only getting him and his wife to pick up their phones were not equivalent to the chances of winning the lottery. Side note-for those who do not know me I am just being goofy and not really being all nah nah.

  28. Hopefully TV land will quickly get a "Mixed Orientation Marriage" sitcom representing a happy family, with typical ups & downs, some confusion, some heartache, some conflicts, but mostly lots of love. THEN maybe the world we not be so afraid. :)

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    2. :) well, that too. ~~~ I do seen to be dragging my feet. But I'm definitely gonna do it --- soon. :)

    3. or one with a typical gay family!

    4. Anon - I admit, I personally don't watch much tv, but, for some reason I thought there was already a sitcom with a typical gay family. Maybe I'm just seeing commercials for shows that have a "gay" story line, I think there are several shows like that.

      Anyway, it seems that media is the avenue where alot of understanding, tolerance, and acceptance begins. (which I personally think is odd & don't necessarily always agree with that) I know one thing, we've come a long way from "Leave It To Beaver" & "Andy Griffiths" (what I used to watch).

      Can anyone think of the sitcom that was "the beginning" of homosexuality in the media?....

      I remember that my mother wouldn't let me watch "Three's Company" because it was a guy living with two girls.

      Now-a-days, I have a college age daughter who was considering sharing an apartment with one of her guy friends, and I actually didn't have a problem with that. (Maybe because I strongly suspect that her guy friend is gay) ;) :)

    5. You may be thinking of Will and Grace - but they were friends - the man gay and the woman straight.
      There have been some shows with gay characters but no sitcoms with a gay family that I know of. Modern Family has a gay couple that is true. But it's all rather new. Twelve years ago the cable channel Showtime broke ground with its American version of the BBC's Queer as Folk. Many young gay people spoke out and said that that series helped them immensely because they had never seen their own lives mirrored before. It wasn't a perfect depiction but it did show different types of gay relationships, including a lesbian one. Many gay men found that it focussed too much on the club scene and it did. But it also showed committed gay relationships (albeit with soap opera-ish problems) The L-Word followed on Showtime shortly thereafter focussing on the soapy problems of some gay women. A perfect show? No way. A chance for gay women to see people like them? yes.
      Television of course has been rather terrible at showing minorities of any kind - it is still predominantly white - with a noted exception being Grey's Anatomy - it has Asian and African American lead characters as well as a lesbian couple. But still, if you aren't white and straight it is hard to see your life mirrored on network TV.
      As for a MOR TV show - Bob&Rose was a short little series that aired on the BBC about a gay man who falls in love with a woman. Not for religious reasons - he just does.
      A sitcom about a MOR would be interesting - would it include the gay person's struggles perhaps to stay faithful? Would there be a religious reason why the gay person has chosen to be in a gay marriage? If so, I'm not sure that that could be a sitcom because basically the gay person would be saying that he/she believes homosexuality to be evil and that's not, well, a ticket to laughs.
      Why people choose MOR's is so important - do they choose it because they believe God finds the practice of homosexuality to be an abomination? Hmmm, might have to be a drama and not a sitcom. Or something for a religious channel type thing.

    6. Also, I don't think the world is afraid of MOR's. I think some may have concerns that (and I'm not saying I think this) that often MOR's are rather the ultimate in homophobia - as in - I'm gay - God hates that - so I'll marry someone of the opposite sex. A sitcom about homophobic people? Not so sure that is a good idea.
      I for one am not afraid of MOR's - rather, I'm saddened that some (not all not all not all) religious folks feel they need to be in one to be acceptable to God. And that in some cases (not all not all not all) the straight spouse in that marriage has to jump through a zillion rationalizations as to why it really really can work.

    7. There are a few with a typical gay family... Rachel on Glee, Modern Family...burt and ernie lol. There was the movie "The kids are all right" which I thought was great.
      I really want to contribute to the Blong winded Blog mom. Get started ;-) I think it will be funny. Not every wife gets to go to sooooo many chick flicks without having to draaaag her husband.
      I appreciate that along with the hunting, fishing, camping, shooting and mechanical sense dad gave me, he also instilled a love for music (Yanni, West Side Story,Madonna, Enigma), and a belief that no matter what your struggling with, to be true to YOURSELF, not what others would expect or have you do.

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    9. I don't know if Tammy is a "typical gay family"

      But she has started a blog :)

      Neurotic One

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    11. Also Anon above:

      I was married to a straight addict for a time and I jumped through a zillion rationalizations as to how it could work... it didnt have anything to do with God not agreeing with divorce, or single parents. It had to do with the fact that I loved him. Only that I loved him. It was my relationship with God that helped me realize I could not stay with him.

      I feel as though all marriages have these same scenerios. Love, dedication, problems, infidelity, work work work. So as you did say (not all) in your comment, why be sad about peoples rationalizations as it pertains to only the scenerio you could not imagine doing your self?
      MOR couples go through soooooo many of the same things other couples go through, gay or straight.
      I personally could not imagine living and loving a woman forever,as I am straight, but I fully support any gay couple in love and happiness, and ups and downs and rationaliztions, as I support any MORs in that same senerio. No offense, just my perspective.

    12. " a sitcom about homophobic people?"

      Seriously Anon. MORS are not homophobic. Growing up I felt like I was defending gays left and right and I did not know then that my dad was gay. So that should open your understanding a bit hopefully.

    13. not all MORs are homophobic, I completely agree with you. But those who marry into a straight marriage because they believe God finds people living as gay people wrong, then yes, that is homophobic. God = gay relationship are wrong and an abomination = homophobic. No amount of rationalizing, vague wording ('strugging with same sex attraction ''traditional moral values'') will change that either really.If someone marries someone because they love them, regardless of their gender, then that isn't homophobic. But if you marry someone because you think God thinks living a gay life is wrong, then that is the very definition of homophobia.

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    15. I guess I need to watch more tv, I have not watched any of the shows mentioned, except Ellen - and I love her :D

      Oh ~~~ and Glee! I love everything musical, that's ALL I watch...... and some news (for what that's worth).

      Jr. IDM - Interesting observation (I'm cracking up), Dad IS much more willing to watch those chick flicks than alot of the straight husbands we are friends with.

      And, not to stereotype, but he does have an amazing love for music which I love about him. I know lots of straight people have a great love for music, but I do hear jokes about gay guys liking Celine and Cher and Barbara, who are all among his favorites on his playlists.(I guess, on the average, straight guys don't - I really don't know)

      There also seems to be a stereotype out there, in society, that gay men are often decorators,... well, have you noticed how your Dad is so supportive of all the decorating type stuff I do, and he even "allowed" me to have a floral sofa (I say that jokingly, because you know I don't need his permission, but I do like his approval).

      I love the fact that he enjoys Broadway, and Musicals, and Plays (definitely more than any of my friends' straight husbands do).

      And, last but definitely not least, it's amazing and wonderful to be loved, and get attention, for my heart/soul/mind/spirit - instead of my body. Wow!

      To me, my Mixed Orientation Relationship is definitely not LESS - it's MOR. :)

    16. Here are some of my BASICS on life in general. (my perception, so if you don’t agree no problem)
      I believe whole-heartedly I was born straight.
      I believe whole-heartedly my dad was born gay.
      I believe whole-heartedly in love and acceptance.
      I believe in Nature as I believe also in Nurture.
      Everyone, regardless of his or her nature, is nurtured by someone. A Jewish or atheist or Lds or Muslim person or parents or grandparents or adoptive anything…… I hope we all agree about this fact. Except mowglie, who of course was nurtured by jungle animals (wink)
      So, I was personally nurtured in a home with mixed orientation parents, who believe in god and believe god is not hurtful or discriminative. They taught me to be open minded and also follow rules. They taught me to make my own decisions but with as much knowledge as possible, and also to trust my instincts and trust my personal relationship with god. They had no problem with me going with friends to any church, although we were LDS and I attended that most often.

      My dad is gay, I witnessed him question EVERYTHING in his life weather I knew his reasoning or not. I witnessed some dreadful times, and some of the happiest I can imagine. I can stand face to face with any LDS faithful or any god fearing folks and say I have a testimony that heavenly father only LOVES all his children, no matter what they do.

      I said before I felt I was defending gays left and right before I knew my own dad was gay. I also felt I was defending EVERY poor picked on soul I knew or saw. I defended the disabled kids; I stood up for the non-Mormons, and minorities. I was not a perfect kid but I do remember feeling compassion more often than many little kids.

      I was also targeted often. Even in high school I had some terrible things happen to me at others hands and people laughed at my expense remorselessly . I was an attractive, straight, secure, Mormon, in a mostly Mormon community. WE all just need to be more loving and more accepting. I stand up to close minded Mormons constantly, I stand up to open minded one track people as much.

      I believe in everyone living the authentic life that makes them happiest, weather it is gay, straight, MOR, transsexual, celibate, or tattooed like a lizard, if that’s what makes you happy. As long as you are not harming anyone.

      Tammy you are one in a million.

      No, I did not know my dad was gay when I entered my first marriage. I did believe my ex was straight as well. I still believe he is straight, but do not use sexual orientation as a way to feel secure in knowing someone, and I feel I am not “surprised” any more by differences in people ;-) (wink and smile)

    17. This comment has been removed by the author.

    18. Anon 6:46 - I just wanted to share a little about OUR story in reference to something you said that I really loved...

      "If someone marries someone because they love them, regardless of their gender, then that isn't homophobic"

      ...Mr. I Define Me and I met just weeks before he left to serve an LDS mission. It was basically a blind date (although we had met one time before for just a few minutes), but anyway, we were set up by some mutual friends.

      On our first date we went dancing and during a slow dance he sang to me, and although I had no interest in him (after all he was leaving for a 2 yr mission in just a few weeks), I have to say that I definitely felt something special that night. Evidentally he did too, because towards the end of the date I clearly remember him saying to me, "Are you for real?". (I knew it was a compliment)

      Well, for the next few weeks, we dated, we kissed (I know you wanna know.... Yep -it was good) ;) - We just seemed to have a connection, that's all I can say.

      So, off he went on his mission - and we wrote to each other faithfully (weekly) for two years. We both agree that although there was definitely something special between us right from the start, we completely feel in love through letters.

      Two years later, he returned from his mission, we were married within a few months, and we've been muddling through with God's help ever since. :)

      It's a spiritual story, always has been, still is to this day.

      *Disclaimer - We do not promote or encourage such irresponsible means of falling in love. AND - a note to all parents, family, and friends of gay & lesbian youth, DO NOT use our story/life to pressure, suggest, or even nudge your loved one into a life that is not THEIR OWN.

    19. One more thing. If my dad had decided, or does decide that he wants to leave my mom and live in a same sex relationship, I would support that as well.

      I am not one sided on this matter even involving my own family.

      I have seen a wonderful thing happen between my parents, as far as love, acceptance, forgivness and growing that is a result of their beleif in the gospel and their love for eachother, and our family.

      I must be my mothers daughter......long winded ;-)

    20. Yes of course Tammy :-) like wise

    21. :) Thanks to Tammy's creative word - we are "B"long winded sis ;) and, btw - TOTALLY AWESOME comments. You are an amazing and wonderful daughter. Love U

    22. It is genuinely a touching story, Mrs IDM. The story was interrupted though, yes? With your husband pursuing other relationships? Well, not relationships but . . . It doesn't negate at all your story in any way. I do feel badly though that you are the one who had to do all of the forgiving, all of the understanding, etc. And that you've had to in a way, create a story in your own mind where your husband is this great man. He may be but he also chose to marry you and not mention that he was gay, have gay affairs putting your health at extreme risk and put you in extreme emotional turmoil. I understand that he felt badly about all of that but . . .
      I think we all create stories around our reality in order to survive.
      I'm impressed that your daughter would be supportive of whatever your husband were to decide - how does that sit with you if I might ask? Have you thought that one day your husband might leave you for another man?

    23. Mrs. IDM, it is possible to be loved in the way you described and for that same person, to as you say, love your body. You've made the choice to sacrifice that but do know that there are straight men out there who would love you as your husband does and love your body. Imagine how wow that would be.
      I have to say - I just can't see your husband as a 'great' man. He kinda put you in a situation where you either had to build him up in your mind as a 'great' man or be bitter.

    24. I will respond although I know you are not talking specifically to me, and I KNOW my mom as well as my dad would respond to you, no problem.

      It would seem to an outsider that the “rosey” picture thus far painted was a way of coping with a very “unrealistic” relationship. But anon, or anyone, this was 32 yrs in the making. How old are you? What has happened to you in your years on earth up till now?

      I imagine you had a lot of turmoil, and distress, I imagine you were dismissed and rejected and hurt, I imagine you were let down in some way and lost hope or faith in many things. You were discriminated against and questioned, told to be someone you knew you were not.

      You have also learned a lot about yourself and what makes you happy, what makes you authentically YOU. You have loved and laughed and lived. You have made memories you cherish deeply, and learned the value of many things including yourself and others.

      You have made mistakes, (no me?lol)you maybe made some bad choices, trusted the wrong people or hurt others or yourself intentionally or unintentionally.

      Anon, no one is perfect, gay, straight or other (_____)fill in blank here.

      You may want to read back through the last 2 posts comments to get a better picture of MRS.IDM and her perception of her husband, it is not all roses and it wasn’t for YEARS. This is why we ALL disclaim: WARNING not a Disney fairytale…..and not recommended.
      We are on here because our family has been through LIFE under very extraordinary circumstances, and Josh Weed has opened a possible door to understanding. If you are Gay and out I am so happy that you are happy and if you are straight and happy then YAY! I fight for all types of happiness, but people like my dad or josh need a safe place too.

      I feel safe in saying that as we all look back in hindsight, we have each come down a road that is ALL OVER the place. Highs and lows, and the lows sag in your memory, but the highs bob up and wave more often, so as you look at the road ahead, you know you can make it to WHEREVER you want to go regardless of the lows who might want to tear you down and leave you naked and hopeless on your own road. The lows can be even your own family. If you come out the other side with more love and understanding and acceptance, the road was worth it.

      “The wound is were the LIGHT enters you.” Rumi

    25. Cant help myself ;-)

      “Your task is not to seek for love, but merely to seek and find all the barriers within yourself that you have built against it.” Rumi

      Last one...for now, lol.

      “Out beyond ideas of wrongdoing
      and right doing there is a field.
      I'll meet you there.” Rumi

    26. Anon 10:37 & 10:43 - Yes, I understand what you are saying. I'm sure that with the tiny bit of the story I have shared it is hard to comprehend. I would like to answer your questions though...

      1. Have I ever thought that one day my husband would leave me for a man? - Probably there was a few occassions of those thoughts, but for the most part, and when times were pretty bad in our relationship, I was actually more fearful that he would "keep me" and secretly have someone else "on the side". Now, however, after we have been through so much, and our relationship is now so very different and healthy and great, I truly don't worry at all. I'm thinking you probably don't believe that, but all I can say is it's absolutely true. I am even surprised myself at the amazing power of forgiveness and my ability to trust again. It's all because of a loving and miraculous God, and a man who is able to submit himself completely to me, and has somehow reestablished and through time earned back my trust.

      2. As for the comment our daughter made and how does that sit with me?? - It is wonderful and so true, I know that she would love and support him no matter what. And, although I would certainly be broken hearted and devastated, I would ultimately support him as well, because why would I want to stay with him if he realized he wanted something I can't offer? - it would be fruitless. So, the only option would be to figure it out just like we've been doing all along.

      Yes, the story was definitely interrupted for several years. Although throughout our marriage there have always been great times, wonderful days, and an underlying love, even amidst the turmoil, but the bad was truly heart breaking, for both of us actually. I definitely could tell some horror stories about...

      *My lonely nights, worrying, wondering, angry, confused.
      *His attempts to get "help", only to be hit on by a counselor, and told where to go to find action in our community.
      *Me secretly following him thinking that (for some stupid reason) if I caught him with someone, then, I would have "enough" reason to just leave. (I know, I already had plenty of reasons - it's just complex and even a little twisted)
      *His "friends" in the gay community, who he thought he could trust, but instead "outed" him to some of his family members.
      *My diversion of turning to internet chatting and ultimately meeting up with a guy for a couple of nights (btw - we kissed but that was basically all, not justifying it, I know it was wrong)
      *His suicidal thoughts and a suicide attempt (I didn't find out about until years later)
      *My constant whinning
      *His excuses to leave the house
      *My efforts to be friendly and accomodating to his "friends" who he was supposedly working on "healthy" relationship with -but eventually became a little more than friends.
      *His fear of AIDS - the stupidity and denial
      *My fear of AIDS - yes, we've both been tested several times

      And the list goes on...... NOT PRETTY :(

      And now, here we are, and believe it or not, we also have a list of amazing and great stuff too, like....

      *A closeness and love that probably rivals most marriages
      *Extremely fine tuned communication skills
      *Undeniable confidence in each other and our love
      *Renewed trust that I can find no words to describe
      *A complete understanding of TRUE forgiveness
      *An amazingly beautiful and fulfilling sex life
      *(and it just happens that my hubby said this to me just yesterday as we were talking about how far we've come, and I thought it was so special that I made a note of it in my smartphone)"A perfect brightness of hope for our future"

    27. (OK - so please read the following with an attitude of calm, peacefullness, and kindness - because, if I were there with you, face to face, we would be nicely & respectfully conversing in a genuine effort to understand - it's hard to send my sincerity and love through typing but I hope you get the spirit of what I'm trying to say)

      Someone mentioned that I've had to "create" a story in my mind where my husband is a great man. But the truth is that together, we've created a story that is real and tangible and wonderful, and it's not just in my mind, but it's the reality of my day to day real life with the man that I married, the man that has evolved into the man that I always knew that he was, and the man that has the unbelievable strength to control his thoughts, briddle his passions, and mold his sexuality to fit his beliefs, instead of following the advice and instructions from his "commrades" in the gay community to "mold his beliefs to fit his sexuality".

      Please know that his efforts in this regard have been, and are, his choice and his deepest desire. I have actually told him many times that he could have an easy out, that we could part best friends, that we could still be a family, and that, at times, I felt it would be best. He would NEVER have any part of such thinking and he continued to push ahead to carry us from hell to heaven. It was his choice, (and mine), for himself, (and for me) -

      IT IS NOT INTENTED TO BE ADVICE OR RECOMMENDED FOR ANYONE ELSE, IT'S JUST BETWEEN US AND GOD. Everyone else must figure their lives out for themselves - and each individual will take their own unique and personal path that no one, not family, friends, church, or a blog, can dictate. Hence our mantra - "I Define Me"

      Anyway, I definitely have not built my husband up in my mind as a great man, he has proven himself to be. I just wish you could meet him and know him, then you would understand. :)

      PS - I just need to clerify my comment about him loving "me" and not "my body". I guess that thought didn't translate properly - what I was talking about was those superficial men who love woman "just for their body". You don't get that with a gay husband. lol
      And, for what it's worth, I do feel like he loves my body, he scoops me up and holds me close and talks all the time about how soft I am, etc. ( not to get all graphic and stuff, but, although I know he is visually attracted to men, and not woman, I also know that he is turned on by "skin", and that IS something I've got plenty of - I'm tall).

      Oh, he definitely loves my body, trust me, I can tell;) - I'm just grateful he's not one of those HE-MEN that I've known, who are all grabby/touchy/feely in a objectifying, disrespectful way. Anyway, that's what I was talking about. I'm just sayin~ :)

      Hey -I've decided to share a paragraph from our book which is a direct quote from my husband. So I'm going to post it as him cause he deserves some say too.

    28. After years of desires in conflict with my personal spiritual beliefs & my sexual attractions, I am so happy and fulfilled and content. I feel like it was all worth everything we’ve been through, and that it was even worth the pain and the sorrow, for the reward of what we have now.

      I feel so much more compelled to be a better husband, a better lover, and a better father. Everything just seems to be “IN BALANCE”.

      I do find myself noticing woman more than I ever did – but I definitely wouldn’t say that I’m attracted to women, because I still feel “gay”, I still see good looking men and do a double take, but I prefer to control my “sexual” thoughts and I don’t get carried away.

      Now days, my motivation (or turn on) for sex has evolved into a desire for my wife, and to feel her warmth and her love. When we are together, I feel the spirit of God.

      A word I use to describe our love is "PRECIOUS” – what a wonderful word to use to describe an intimate sexual experience with your spouse, considering that probably so many think it’s just all about physical satisfaction - it's not.

    29. I hope he can keep his desires for other men in check for the rest of his life. Too bad though that he feels that he has to do that.

    30. MOR straight graduateNovember 18, 2012 at 5:20 PM

      Family IDM, thanks for all you shared. Your opening post to this thread asked for a TV show with an MOR family living a family life with normal ups and downs. The subsequent posts describe a family whose ups and downs have not been normal. AIDS tests? I don't think any if us would choose for that to be our new normal. Suicidal thoughts? Counsellor's that hit on their clients and lead them to the local scene. Reminds me all of a very painful time in my life, when I was the straight partner in an MOR. All of your first list does. And the whole if your second list describes 2 new marriages, the new marriages of me and of my ex. Funnily enough, we both married men.

      Caveat! Because I always have to add it... Josh, Lolly and a few others seem to be achieving MORs that are reflecting the second list more than the first. And of course this is a field that is near impossible to track. But my 25 plus years of paying attention to publications, testimonies and 'ministries' in this field tells me that your first list is the reality of many MORs. With or without physical infidelity. Many gay spouses stay faithful but miserable.

      And Mr IDMs current place of peace? Most of us feel our libidos subside in middle age.

      I am not posting all this to debate you. Truly, I am happy for you that your home is in ascendancy. But I do feel a needs to leave a cyber trail around here for young gay people and their potential straight spouses. In most cases an MOR isn't easy and it isn't pretty and it isn't recommended by me and other graduates.

    31. anonymous 2:16
      If you are currently, or ever in a monogamous relationship, I hope you can keep your desires in check for therest of your life. For your parteners sake.... If you believe in love, trust and respect, you will keep those normal desires in check.I do, because I love my husband. I am attracted to other men, who isnt? But I love my husband on a different level. I would be willing to bet you want the right to marry who ever you we want, but if you dont believe desires can be kept in check, what would you used a legal long term relationship for? I support gay marriage, even so you can cheat on your partener, since you've expressed you believe desires are uncontrollable.

      Whats interesting is you seem to want to tell them about a sadness Or situation they have not yet experienced...... But they have .They also support you in your lifestyle. I guess some things are one sided. I'll get used to it one day maybe.

    32. This comment has been removed by the author.

    33. I will say I do not know what it is like to be in a relationship with yhe same sex, and be attracted to the other, but desire is not uncontrollable.

    34. I never wrote that desires are uncontrollable. They absolutely can be controlled. Your father is now able to do that as he (or rather you and your mother)have said. I do agree with MOR straight graduate that libidos to become much easier to control in middle age and beyond.
      And just for the record, I am straight although that is mostly irrelevant to mention here.
      What impressed me a whole lot about your writing, Jr. Mrs. I Define Me, is that you weren''t resorting as others and I hae at times to passive aggressive writing. That showed me that you were intelligent and not defensive and I thought, 'wow, cool.' But the 'I'll get used to it one day maybe" - come on. I LOVE that Mrs. I define me and you support gay marriage. That is incredible on here really.
      I will try and be honest and not be passive aggressive again myself. And if Mrs. I Define Me is going to be starting a blog and is going to be open to comments (I don't know this) consider me good practice! If she is to move out of the safety of this blog where most of the folks are happy and supportive as long as people aren't in gay relationships or if they are, then they are not confrontational, she might get more comments like mine. Who knows?
      Honestly, I think that if Mr. I Define Me didn't think that being in a gay relationship was "instinctually" wrong he wouldn't be in a straight marriage. Suicide attempts and thoughts, HIV tests, sex on the down low, feeling guilty and horrible about it, begging his wife to stay, wife has built a life (including children) with the man, having to keep it a secret from some of the children, having to be anonymous, etc, etc, etc - it's classic. I am not saying he is a bad man - I'm sure if I met him I would love him. It's not about bad or good. It's about building a life based on the idea that God finds the homosexual lifestyle to be an abomination. We can convince ourselves of anything - even that a natural reduction in libido is a miracle.
      Now having said that, my uncle in a straight marriage and in the closet his whole life, began to down low it in his 60s until he got gay bashed and felt that he couldn't report it. So you never know.

    35. MOR SG - Yes, I understand and agree, our life has possibly had more than it's fair share of "crap", although I don't discount the fact that probably most people's lives have drama and traumna and "stuff". I'm not whinning about mine, just want to reveal the truth for the same reasons you mentioned in your last paragraph....

      "In most cases an MOR isn't easy and it isn't pretty and it isn't recommended by me and other graduates".

      ...we don't recommend it either. We share our story, to some degree, to hopefully help families & friends of gay/lesbian individuals see how difficult it is, how real their struggles are, and how pressures do not help and most often they hurt. And to show the reality to any young man or woman who might think that keeping their "secret" and foolishly muddling through is the answer. IT'S NOT! - I applaud Josh and Lolly for being so real and healthy and thoughtful and responsible in their decisions regarding their relationship, etc. Hopefully, the world is learning and growing and all LGBT individuals will find more acceptance, more tolerance, and more options for their lives than my husband did when he was young, and through the early years of our marriage. We can all pray for a better tomorrow, and I believe awareness and understanding is the key.

      Anyway, MOSTLY, our story is just a testimony of God's love and the miracles we have seen in our lives. It's a story about somehow making it through some extreme sorrow, frustration & pain (with a lot of help from God - through constant prayer and faith). It's a story about ONE gay man's journey and his ultimate success in molding his life into what HE wants it to be - for him. (not necessarily for anyone else).

      PS - the idea of a "normal" MOR family on tv was definitely not gonna be OUR FAMILY - lol, but maybe Josh & Lolly's. ;)

      PSS - I just have to share with you that I literally laughed out loud when I read the part about "our libidos subsiding in middle age". :D LOL hahahahaha (knee slap~~) :) - This is probably TMI, but the truth is that in the last few years we've been like newlyweds. Mr. IDM is definitely NOT showing signs of "low T". For what it's worth, our sexual activity has absolutely tripled if not quadrupled in the last few years. And recently, between his growing desire for me, and the fact that we are new "empty nesters" - well,... WATCH OUT!!! ;) lol

      What's even more wonderful is the new attitude, and amazingly beautiful spirit behind it all, the honesty, the passion, the genuine connection, and the real love.

      My husband recently said that he never imagined in a million years that he could feel this way. And, he said, "Wow, so THIS is what it feels like to be Newlyweds and madly in love".

      MOR SG - I recognize that it didn't work out this way for you, clearly your life has evolved to a great place for you and I am thrilled for you, that you have both found happiness - that's really all that matters. I don't know why our life/marriage/relationship has evolved this way for us, but I'm so very grateful that we have found happiness, in our unique way, as well. :)

      I do sincerely realize that we are RARE -
      but we have an amazing story, so we just feel the need to SHARE.

    36. Anon 6:16

      I apologize if my last statement came off as passive aggressive or snarky. I didn't mean it that way.

      I just ment that because I know I cannot change anyone except myself, I will have to one day except that even people who claim open mindedness will still project, assume, and try to undermine the already complex and also amazing story my parents have lived through.
      I know by stepping out into the light, it has subjected them to ridicule. I expect ridicule, and feel I am prepared to speak with "close minded " or misunderstanding people.
      I am taken back still by some people who on one hand fight for injustice and acceptance while on the other hand, project, tear down and try to snuff out others asking for acceptance and understanding and love.

      My statement was sincere. I can't change them, so I must change me and accept them in their misconception and assumptions. Its bigger then just this Weed blog. I see it everyday. Maybe one day my parents will feel loved and accepted and safe enough to come out as courageously as Josh & Lolly.
      Maybe one day everyone can love and respect eachother more openly without fear.

  29. Josh, sorry about all the acerbic -ness in the responses. I think you're great! Love your family. Support your presence at this conference...

  30. P.S. I think this blog has a cool fan base. Even though I'm sometimes made uncomfortable (I hate conflict) I enjoy reading the comments. Gotto love you guys

  31. I attended the conference today in Provo, and felt it was profound. You have given our family much hope. I liked the emphasis on the atonement. I have a tremendous respect for you and your wife, and I am grateful that you and your sweet wife have chosen to help and strengthen others. Regardless of any negative comments, please know that you have a made a difference in our family.

  32. Love that you love Schmidt's. My good friend's family owns it
    They are the bomb.

  33. LOVE Dunford Donuts! We have been known to take several dozen back home to the Portland area, only to arrive home 12 hours later with less than several dozen still in the back seat of our car.
    My favorite cake store in Utah: One Sweet Slice in South Jordan.

  34. So I ended up going to the first hour of the conference. I can give you a little bit of a synopsis on that first bit....which basically covered the premise of the meeting, a more thorough introduction to the panel, and the first question by the moderator.

    A number of disclaimers were first mentioned:
    - there'd be no discussion about politics
    - there would be little/no discussion about possible origins of sexual attraction
    - By having a number of people on the panel that were married was not meant to suggest/promote marriage as a cure for homosexuality. (That was stated strongly)

    The main idea was to have 7 therapists/people with differing views on how to help gay members with their similarly held belief that there are choices/options for those who are gay/sga and believe that their faith and feelings can be reconciled in a manner consisted with the Gospel without compromising healthy individual development and growth.

    Those on the panel were pretty interesting. I was most interested in Laurie Campbell, Weed, and Ty Mansfield. I didn't think I would with Laurie, but she had a demeanor that stated quite clearly without words that's she's had serious struggles/problems in her life and made it through.

  35. The first (and only) question that I heard was a biggie though. It was on change and what it meant to do so. The moderator pointed out from the get go that experiencing sexual attraction to the same gender was not a sin before letting the panel speak. A number of the speakers talked about an aversion to labels, starting with Laurie. For her the only big change that mattered was yielding to God/spiritual conversion, whether married or single. She prefers to remain unlabeled when it comes to sexuality and stated that get married for her was coincidental to her general experience (poor wording on my part, not hers).
    Another woman, Cox, talked about sexual fluidity, especially in lesbian cohorts and also emphasized the overuse of labels and that change was an individual experience.
    There was someone else that I didn't pay close attention to who compared sexuality to language acquisition. Can't really tell you much more beyond that. I was looking at my phone freaking out about the time around then.
    Ty Masfield was the first to talk specifically about the question of whether one can or can't change one's sexual orientation. He stated that when first starting out that was a "heavy" question for him in his personal path in coming to terms with his sexuality. His journey entailed getting away from the question altogether and described the question as a red herring. His change entailed largely his spiritual rebirth and talking about who would be in the driver's seat: him or his emotions. Talked a little about what it meant to be true to oneself as well and the blurring between philosophy and science in psych.
    The last one I heard was Josh Weed. He wasn't the last to talk, but I couldn't afford the time to listen to the last speaker on this. My notes are a little...messy at this point. he stated that therapy was generally about change in and of itself. When someone comes in, they're usually looking to change some aspect about their life. He stated he agreed with what had been said, I think particularly with Ty...though I could have misunderstood. He disagreed that the changing orientation Q was necessarily a red herring. That it could be a very personal question that individuals ask him in therapy settings. He, personally, as a therapist hadn't seen that 100% orientation change and felt that his client needed to be aware of that when coming into therapy and setting expectations. That they needed to re-orient their expectations for what therapy could/couldn't do and also what's most likely to happen in their personal lives (which isn't a massive orientation change). There may be change in intensity of feelings or prominence in one's life, but not in least that's what I got out of it. Again, i was freaking out on the inside about being late to work.

    Overall, I wish I could have stayed for the rest of it. It was pretty interesting stuff. The crowd didn't seem super large, but I think that was just because the room was huge....they estimated around 350 in attendance or something like that.

    Well, that's all I have to say for now.

  36. I've looked into Ty's story (from his own words) quite a bit recently.
    honestly, I'm terrified for his wife.

    1. I have too...I'm not all that worried. Honestly.

    2. Agreed. I did state above that I was disappointed about Josh's participation at this event, but I am always in awe of Josh and Lolly, no matter what. Just the way they've approached everything. It's different. It's special. And that's why they've made such a huge impact in so many people's lives.
      On the other hand, when I once watched an interview with Ty and his wife, I got the chills. Only because, to me, I got the impression that Ty was dangerously in denial about a lot of things. And his wife seemed to be on a whole different page.
      In the case of Josh and Lolly one gets the idea that they both ARE genuinely in love. With Ty and his wife, it almost seems like they're striving for the impossible. It seems very ... sad.

    3. It is very sad, isn't it? I feel badly for Ty's wife.

    4. That is ridiculous. There is no way to diagnose the health of a relationship based on one interview. And it's extremely patronizing to victimize the wife. Especially when she knew exactly what she was getting into. They both made a choice with eyes wide open as to what they felt/struggle with. From what little I know about mansfield (which is just what I've read from his essays/books) he's reached a point where he's comfortable with himself and has a strong understanding of what he wants with or without a spouse. They're two people who made a decision. I don't feel bad for them in the least. It's not sad, it's life, and they have a fairly strong foundation of open communication and mutual support. To diagnose how much the love each other and how well their relationship would entail more of my own biases and prejudices being projected on them than an actual means of diagnosis.

    5. It is so so sad. Sniffle.

    6. what is the saddest is gay men who feel they can't be gay and then pile on top of that a marriage to a woman. It's like sad on top of sad.

    7. also - having some people on the panel who are gay but married to women wasn't meant to promote it - that is a mixed message. lot of desperate folks are going to that conference and they will cling to whatever they can find that is anything but themselves/their child being in a gay relatioship. We hear that on here all the time - there is anothr option! type thing. So while they may claim they aren't promoting it, they are promoting it.
      It's all fancied up and niced up and people cry and it's beautiful but the core message is - you don't have to live the gay way, you can live like Josh. No matter how many times that is denied, it is what is being promoted - from the poster to the panel. And where on that panel was the happy gay couple? they could have had one and said while we don't promote the gay way, here is a happy gay couple.
      mixed messages, people. coded wording. etc.

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    9. This is stated above, you feel like it only can be gay marriage or hetero marriag. Give me a break.there are other options if that is what both parties want. Do u really think that two people woyld get married if they DID NOT love each other? Absolute doublespeak out of the both sides of your mouh sometimes. These people are grown up and can make grown up decisions. You need to quit treating them as if they have no brain. People can go to these conferences and hear the goid bad and ugly and decide for themselves. They are going to hear more about it.

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    12. To Zehn, I mean anonymous at 10:38 am, you have chosen to completely ignore what it is I actually wrote.
      (the anon comment above tammy's) I will repeat what I said in different words but only once more because you aren't listening anyway and how is the weather in Boise?
      It is a mixed message to say that a conference is not promoting MOR's as a solution to being gay when on the panel are people in MOR's. No matter that they say MOR's aren't for everyone, etc. etc. When people are desperate- and apparently from all I've read Mormons are DESPERATE to live anything but a gay life - they will see Josh and Ty and others up there and regard a MOR as a solution. It's not about two people falling in love in a MOR, not at all. It' about people choosing a MOR because they feel it is better than living a gay life.
      Example. I'm willing to bet that some (not all) mormons feel that being gay might just be worse than having cancer. Now, if I had cancer and I went to a conference that had a panel and on that panel were people who had a cure for my cancer. Those people were put on a poster to promote the conference about cure for my cancer. now the moderator and the speaker were super clear that while the cure worked for them - in that they still had cancer but didn't have to live with it - that it was really hard work and you had to be ready and it wasn't for everyone. I would be getting that cure and doing that hard work - because I am desperate.
      Zehn aka anon, being all condescending isn''t working in your favour, dude. You don't have the intellect to back it up it up. Are you able to read over what I wrote and understand it?

    13. I would really like to share in this conversation but I am just so busy - I have been working on setting up my blog (finally), but mostly I'm throwing things together to fly to spend Thanksgving with Jr. I Define Me and her family (her awesome husband and my wonderful grandchildren) - YEAH! :D

      PS - Bet ya can't guess what we'll be talkin about ~~ ;)

      Also, my sweetheart, Mr. I Define Me, will be meeting me there as well. Hopefully he'll get a chance to take a break from his busy job, and share some of his feelings, experiences, & beliefs on here (or maybe on our blog ~~~ if I get it set up ???)

      BTW - thank you Anon 10:38 for recognizing the foolishness of some of these remarks that are so condiscending to people like my husband. It seems that many of those who are against mixed orientation marriages, and the men who choose them, are convinced that these men are sad, confused, miserable, misled, and literally "without a brain".

      The lack of respect for men like my husband is actually comical. Often, when I read these comment threads to my husband, he literally laughs out loud because he's so blown away by the arrogant comments of those who percieve to know about him (and others like him) and his (their) life.

      So, just in case there is any question about my husband's intelligence, and his ability to make adult decision for his life. Let me just tell you that he IS, in fact, a very intelligent man, his job is very important and often very intense - he is highly skilled and his company flys him all over the world, and entrusts him with some very important work. He is also very intelligent in his personally life as well, he has been through alot, made some serious mistakes, and learned alot in the process. He has devoted much time and energy into learned and growing, and has some absolutely amazing accomplishments under his belt - so don't underestimate my husband's ability to manage and mold his own life, ~~~~~ he's come a long way from his childhood days on the farm. :)

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    15. I second what Tammy says. I don't question the intelligence of gay men who choose to marry women, nor do I question how nice they are, how important their jobs are, how selfless they are or any of that. I want to be very clear about that.
      Someone could be the smartest, most hard-working, kindest person who ever lived but if they feel that they must marry someone of the opposite sex because they feel that god says that being gay is wrong, then I think that that is incredibly unfortunate and so unnecessary.
      The conferences, the rationalizations, the down-lowing, the defensiveness, the insistence that sex with a gay husband is so much more wonderful than straight people have, all so unnecessary.
      But if someone is in deep and in a long term marriage- that can be impossible to understand because it would be too painful. That is ultimately the saddest part.

    16. Ok - you guys..... :) - I have got to catch a flight in the morning, but I appreciate the calm and thoughtful conversation we are having. Although it does seem that we are going around in circles, I do think that we are learning and growing from these opportunities to share how we feel. I believe that we can even agree to disagree since we clearly see things from completely different paradigms.

      It's ok, because, as I've said, I am not here to try to convince anyone of anything. I am only here to share our unique and beautiful story to anyone interested. I am also here to learn and grow.

      Tammy - Oh how I would love to have you and Joanne to Thanksgiving dinner. I know Jr.IDM and Mr.IDM would love that too. Actually, I have a huntch that we would have a crazy blast, laugh alot, hug each other, and maybe cry a little too.

      Tammy, I have a question for you. I was trying to get to bed, but these questions are keeping me up.(I ask them with all due respect- not intended to sound snarky, just thoughtfully pondering, if you will)

      I'm wondering, since you said once that Joanne "was" straight, and that she said the only woman she had desire for was you, hence she calls herself a Tambian instead of a Lesbian, how then, is her story really any different than Mr. IDM's?

      Did her sexual attractions/desires "evolve" to some degree to something different than what they used to be?
      ~~~ My husband's have.
      Is she grateful for the evolution of her sexuality?
      ~~~ My husband is.
      Does she feel Non-acceptance from some straight people?
      ~~~ My husband does.
      Does she feel Non-acceptance from some gay/lesbian people?
      ~~~ My husband does.
      Does she sometimes wish she got approval for having the courage and determination to follow her heart?
      ~~~ My husband does.
      Is she happier with her life now than she ever was before?
      ~~~ My husband is.
      Does she ultimately recognize that her life and choices and attractions are all uniquely her own and feel secure in knowing that it doesn't matter what anyone thinks?
      ~~~ My husband does.
      Does she constantly have to accept the fact that there are many who "dismiss" her life and her love as something "less than their idea of ideal"?
      ~~~ My husband does.
      Does she tell you that she is more content, more fulfilled, and happier with you than she has ever been before?
      ~~~ My husband does.
      Do you recognize how real and awesome and beautiful and true your (the two of you) love is?
      ~~~ I do.
      Does she talk about, and literally display a "change of heart" within herself that is indescribable?
      ~~~ My husband does.
      Do you see what an amazingly strong and special person your spouse is?
      ~~~ I do.
      Have you both experienced some people who would try to "explain away" what the two of you know you have?
      ~~~ We have.
      Do either of you ever feel that there are some people who just can't seem to wrap their brain around the life/love that you have found?
      ~~~ We do.
      Although you know for yourselves that you are honestly happy, do your "comrades" who you would expect to cheer you on instead say that they think your relationship is "unfortunate"?
      ~~~ Our just did.
      Do you laugh together, love together, and live your lives together in a genuinely real and completely content way?
      ~~~ We do.
      Is your life together something that you never thought possible, and does what you have established together seem like a miracle?
      ~~~ Yep! same here. :)

      I'm just sayin, -- If you and Joanne have acceptance, understanding and approval from the gay/lebian community for the "unique" love/life you have established, ~~~~then why can't we?

    17. Yes. This ^^^^

    18. Tammy &anon@9:58,
      I know most of your comments are more specifically written to anon @ 10:38, which is his/hers to defend not mine, but I wanted to respond to a recurrent theme I’ve noticed.
      This reminds me of an interview I was reading the other day from a professional counselor who wrote her dissertation on LDS women and sexuality (if you’re curious, her story can be found here: ). She was in grad school when a discussion started about a 25 yr old virgin for religious reasons and the clinician discussed this as an obvious sign of sexual repression. She stated that there may be another reasoning behind it (and described it) that was largely disagreed with. It struck me as another set of values and perspective looking into another very different set of values and perspective. In a sense it was ethnocentric.
      Of course there are cultural issues/problems with sexuality and gender relation within the church. I want to go into marriage and family therapy focusing on sex and women’s ID, because I believe that there is room to better develop in my faith that I want to work with. I’m saying this because what I’m seeing is an implementation of values outside of the group as a measure of what is good. You can’t expect that. Weed explained why he attended just fine. But the reason there was the format that there was, is quite clear. It’s is looking to reconcile LDS faith with feelings. It had a specific purpose, it isn’t just about not “promoting the gay way,” it’s about finding resolution and a specifically LDS way. Just like that would mean a difference in dialogue and change and perspective within the LDS view of sexuality/gender found in the story of the 25 yr old virgin so it would when discussing homosexuality. We (lds) need to have this dialogue in our own way. On the precepts of our own community and our own values.
      On the issue of sorrow:
      1. To clarify, I was calling it ridiculous to assume any strong knowledge about someone’s relationship and it’s health. The beginning of these sounded more like palm reading. I give space for anybody’s story to be defined by them. If they describe it as sad, then it is sad. But from what I read of Ty, sad is not the way he would describe his life. To describe him/his wife as sad, terrifying, etc is a judgment not a fact.
      2. In the general note, this is a perfect example of differing values. It was asked whether or not it’s sad to struggle against who they are? My answer is no. It is sad when they can’t find resolution, yes. But for me, as someone who is LDS. To struggle with who you are is apart of the Gospel…two important scriptures for me:

    19. “For the natural man is an enemy to God, and has been from the fall of Adam, and will be, forever and ever, unless he yields to the enticings of the Holy Spirit, and putteth off the natural man and becometh a saint through the atonement of Christ the Lord, and becometh as a child, submissive, meek, humble, patient, full of love, willing to submit to all things which the Lord seeth fit to inflict upon him, even as a child doth submit to his father.”
      “And if men come unto me I will show unto them their weakness. I give unto men weakness that they may be humble; and my grace is sufficient for all men that humble themselves before me; for if they humble themselves before me, and have faith in me, then will I make weak things become strong unto them.”
      There is also the general idea, for LDS, that there must be an opposition in all things. Likewise, in many of the stories of gay members of the Church who I’ve read, there is a common theme that I’ve found among many who are at peace and living the gospel: they are often grateful for being gay because it has taught them so much about God and the atonement. Have they struggled? Has it been hard? Have there been times of disillusionment, disappointment, and worry? Yes, yes, and yes. Does this make their overall situation necessarily sad? No. My struggles are not theirs. But I know that many of the struggles I’ve had, the experiences, and life circumstances could easily be described as such. Some would say certain experiences are unnecessary, that my struggle need not be, and that my life is difficult/repressed (I could easily be that 25 yr old virgin and probably with a libido that would outrank hers something bad…give me a few months) I would hate to have someone, anyone describe it that way. It is not challenge free, worry free, struggle free, or sadness free. But it is a beautiful and rewarding life. I wouldn’t have it any other way.

    20. Thank you tasha.

    21. If someone has two very important feelings in their own life and feels like they must choose the one that is more important to them personally. I don't find that sad or unfortunate. I would call it life.

      We all choose between two "important" things all the time.

      If someone truly believes with their whole heart and soul, with their own experience that the doctrine regarding homosexuality from the LDS church is true.... this is important to them.

      If someone is homosexual as well... this is obviously important to them as well.

      Why is it celebrated when they choose homosexuality over faith?
      Why is it condemned when they choose faith over homosexuality?

      I'm not trying to be snarky at all. I am honestly asking. If a independent adult chooses one over the other... can we respect them either way?

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    23. Tammy,
      My first scenerio was more of an analogy to what I see happening at the moment: Two different views based on two differing backgrounds, of the same experience.
      And, no, I will never know what it's like to be gay. There's a long list of things that I'll never fully understand because I'm not _____(fill in the blank)____.
      I also don't think I was necessarily cheering them on. I think the stories of those I've heard are amazing. I think they're full of character that I personally don't know I have entirely and aspire toward having. But I take them at their word. And those that I have heard would not describe their lives in such a way that I have seen described here. That was what I was mainly writing to. I wouldn't call it living the "straight" life, either. More like living their lives as they feel is right. For those that choose to adhere to the faith that means they've chosen what they feel is right. If they are doing it from pressure, social acceptance, etc they'll fail...they won't be fully happy with it. I've seen it happen before: doing everything right on paper and being terribly uncomfortable doing so. If they do it because they love the Gospel, because they've chosen what values and perspective they want to maintain. Then that isn't sad. It's their choice.

    24. Tasha. I love the gospel and I love the Jesus of the gospel. Choosing not to live a gay life has nothing to do with the gospel. It may have to do with certain intepretations of the gospel but it is not part of it. And it makes me almost unspeakably sad how it has been co-opted to the point that people who don't know the gospel, believe that what you mention above is a part of it.
      That is one of the strongest messages that I will spend my life trying to convey - that 'anti'gay values' for lack of a better way of putting it-have nothing at all to do with God. Someone said to me once that she hoped to rescue the Gospel from the fundamentalists and she is right. I live my life hoping - and praying that it is not too late.

  37. I loved the conference! I'm really glad my husband and I went. We were the ones who came up to meet you before it started and said you two are just a little too perfect to be real. Enjoyed meeting you! My husband also blogs at

  38. While I plugged this conference into my event calendar i had very little reason to think I'd actually be in attendance. And I wasn't. But I had one of THE coolest little spiritual experiences of my life yesterday. Yesterday was a HUGELY STRESSFUL day for my husband. He had been putting in a lot of late nights, while fighting some cold/flu/cough-like thing to finish an event presentation (new website reveal party) his company was doing for a major client. the pre-party dinner didn't even begin until 5:30pm yet my husband wanted to be there at 2pm so he could make sure all the prep activities were set up and ready to roll. A bajillion things went wacky that morning and we left our 4 kids (old enough to fend for themselves) behind in the wake of that lovely stress storm. I was tired already and it was going to be a long day. Exciting, but long. We got to the convention center (very new one I had never been to before) in Provo and as we walk in and look at a monitor it flashed 2 different events going on there: my husband's thingy on he 3rd floor and another entitled "SSA: Faith and Feelings" on the 2nd. ??? Could that be the same conference that Josh and Lolly were attending? see when I had glanced at the flyer attached here one my phone all I "saw" was Provo, Mormon counsellors and "ballroom" and assumed it was going to be at BYU in the Wilkinsen Center Ballroom. Weird. 2 conferences on SSA on the same day in the same city. So I checked my phone again and realized this was the very location mentioned on the flyer Josh posted. Wow! But it had been over for almost 2 hours so I thought (insert melancholy Eyore face) "oh well I missed it". I had seen a few stragglers walking out of their room, but with the mood my husband was in on his very important day, I was not going to get distracted by my love for all things Weed and say "Honey I know this is like one of the most important days in your new business career and you are stressed beyond belief and need my support and admiration, but could i just sneak in here and see Josh, ya know that gay guy, and his darling wife Lolly??? lol.
    Whelp - besides the sound/video tech guys, we were the only ones there. How many more hours until I get to eat what I hoped would be a yummy dinner and hear an exciting presentation complete with inspirational guest speaker??? So I walked around, even went downstairs to see if there were any interesting vestiges of that OTHER event. Nothing. Great views of the mountains though. Incredible. Went back up the escalator to meander about and finally went back into our very large empty room with many tables and chilled with my IPhone. Did I secretly hope the Weeds were still somewhere in this building so I could hug them and tell them how much their blog means to me and how touched I am by their love, faith and candor? Um - yes, actually I did.

  39. (part II) Over another hour later a tiny, little woman walks in our room asking for a quarter. I instantly recognize her sweet face and smile! It's Lolly! I know I was a nervous Nelly and rambled on about I don't know what, but she was so, so Lolly and I had to hug her. But i knew she had important business to attend to (lol - inside female joke) so I actually let her go on with her life.
    These little 'coincidences' in life, in MY life, never fail to remind me that there is a loving God who knows what I've been going through and how a small little miracle like that, just a little reminder that He knows me, could bring immense joy to me. I actually went downstairs again almost ANOTHER HOUR later (sheesh, I guess Josh really can talk) to stretch my legs, and there were the Weeds and another couple heading down the escalator to leave. I did not want to invade their space, but I did say "hi" from afar to Josh too and told him I was Suzthefooz. very strange. You meet someone for the first time and you introduce yourself as an online persona. Welcome to virtual reality. Thanks you guys for being gracious. You do very important things just by being you.
    I hope the donuts and cake were awesome. My husband's presentation was. :)

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    2. :-)
      Your cute penguin profile pic is awesome too.

    3. I love those little God moments. There has been a book written by an anthropologist called, 'when god talks back''. She follows he Christian Vineyard movement and not Mormonism but her description of the God moments you speak about and how it strengthens the faith of Vineyarders is almost identical. I love that God speaks in such gentle ways to anyone of any faith.

  40. When I go to Utah I come back with massive quantities of caffeine-free Barq's root beer.

  41. Boyd Packer had this to say about marriage at one point: "We've always counseled in the Church for our Mexican members to marry Mexicans, our Japanese members to marry Japanese, our Caucasians to marry Caucasians, our Polynesian members to marry Polynesians. The counsel has been wise. You may say again, "Well, I know of exceptions." I do, too, and they've been very successful marriages. I know some of them. You might even say, "I can show you local Church leaders or perhaps even general leaders who have married out of their race." I say, "Yes--exceptions." Then I would remind you of that Relief Society woman's near-scriptural statement, "We'd like to follow the rule first, and then we'll take care of the exceptions."
    How do we feel about that?

    1. How do we feel about it in what sense? Regarding the church in general, or as it pertains to MOR? Also, when was this said?

    2. Does it matter when it was said? I think 1977 - is it all erased after 1978? did he change his mind? Does it all get wiped out? how do people feel - Was Packer right?
      Because in 1993 he noted: "The dangers I speak of come from the gay-lesbian movement, the feminist movement (both of which are relatively new), and the ever-present challenge from the so-called scholars or intellectuals."
      So I can see why there would be a need for MORs if it is felt that the gay-lesbian movement is so dangerous. Should Caucasian MOR's only marry Caucasian MOR's or can it now be interracial?
      What leader was it that rounded up all of the scholars and intellectuals and shot the lot of them? Cambodia I think.
      Also Packer:
      "You may laugh at the story. But, if we’re not alert, there are those today who not only tolerate but advocate voting to change lives that would legalize immorality. As if a vote would somehow alter the designs of God’s laws of nature. A law against nature would be impossible to enforce. For instance, what good would the law against – a vote against – the law of gravity do?"f- right from the top comes the word to fight legalization of same sex marriage.
      He also in the last couple of year (at a general conference I believe) said: "(gays) were pre-set and cannot overcome what they feel are inborn tendencies toward the impure and unnatural. Not so! Why would our Heavenly Father do that to anyone?"
      This was later redacted after protest.
      So it is no surprise that Mormons will do ANYTHING to avoid living a gay life.
      Packers' in his mid-80s - will his comments die with him?

    3. I am someone who identifies as Mormon, and I am also for gay rights and equality.
      I view it as a sign of the times.... back then it was not as normal to be in an interratial marriage, and MANY people were ridiculed and discriminated against for less.
      Possibly it was a statement to more-so protect people from discrimination or persecution? It seems ignorant maybe, but in the 1970's many people ( as they still are) were very ignorant to many things.

      A question I have, do you hold the same expectation of understanding to your grandparents, when they lived in the 60's or 70's?

      I agree, people's lives are at stake. I feel like a consensus of evolving times has, and is, leading to a better understanding. I believe in science and medicine, but they too are evolving rapidly, and things that were thought to be true in the 70's are not so now, as our understanding is widening.

      Progress is a movement not a sit and hang out forever. I do not know how old you are but I bet you have a greater understanding now then you did 5 or 10 yrs ago. Just in general.

      Progress in my dads situation might not happen until the younger generation gets older and realizes that sexuality maybe has no definition except what you decide....oooh, thats scary right?

      I think adult human beings are capable of making decisions for themselves. I believe now days it is as scary for LGBT youth to be told " god hates you if you marry your same sex" as it is for them to think "I feel gay so I must BE GAY"

      It is as dagerous to tell them they must give up their faith to be "authentic" or true to themselves.

      Why cant ALL the card be out on the table? My parents are playing a CRAZY, hard, slim odds, type of hand, with all vulnerability on the line, but they have cards to play.

      Why not allow others to hear the truth and see the genuity and make their own decisions?

      Human beings are such majestic creatures and the things we do shock ourselves sometimes. Hopefully as we all "muddle" along we can have more love and understanding for everyone, and not be threatened by past ideas and future living.

    4. Ty jr. My feelings and thoughts exactly!!

    5. Packer made the other comments I posted well after 1977 - one just two years ago actually.
      So Packer is wrong then because he is in his 80s? The recent quotes of Packer are not a good thing or explainable away because he is in his 80s? Is what Packer says considered to be directly from God?
      These are important questions because even though you may understand progress, etc. other Mormons ARE GOING TO TAKE EVERY WORD OUT OF PACKER's MOUTH as directly from God. And if they aren't, why aren't they?
      The old 'times change, older people are racist/homophobic it's okay that our prophets are'' doesn't make sense because I thought Packer was hearing directly from God. Once you start saying that he can make mistakes in his speaking - that opens up a huge can of worms in terms of how much of what the prophets/apostles say should be taken as from God and how much is just from a racist/homophobic old man.

    6. I know that some Mormons cling to the idea that the church leadership from the Adam and Noah and Abraham were in direction communication with God all the time. Like they were having lunch or something weekly. And, as a natural consequence of this, these men and women should be completely perfect.

      I (and many others!) think this is wrong. Church leadership is made up of humans. Good, strong, virtuous men and women who are praying just like I pray and sometimes messing up just like I do.

      I don't have a problem with this at all. I see a distinct difference between religious doctrine and religious doctrine. And I am okay with this. We are all humans trying to relate to the divine in the best way we know how.

      I can easily believe that some people are able to better discern revelation than me. Maybe it is because they have a specific role to play. Maybe it is because they have put more energy into practicing than I have.

      But, when the church changes a policy.... I don't see that as problem.
      Doctrinal issues, I believe, are much more basic than what is described in Mormon Doctrine.

      In these cases of official change, I believe that they are honestly striving as a group of 15 honorable people, to find a common answer to prayer.

      When church leaders (even Joseph Smith) do something really stupid, I don't see that as a problem. Because they are human beings. I can't remember a time that any of them have declared themselves to be more than that.

      So, of course, they are influenced by their environment and their age and their life experiences. The principles shouldn't change, but people are always growing and changing.

      (FTR-I think that all members have individual leaders that they relate to more than others. Which is awesome. Packer isn't the most relatable to me.)

    7. oops That was supposed to say religious direction and religious doctrine. Sorry.

    8. any rationalization in a storm. Packer speaks so homophobically that as I say, his biggest homophobic speech had to be redacted.
      There is that splitting hairs of direction and doctrine me thinks.
      And heck it is fine that we are all humans trying to relate to the divine but folks like Packer are making doctrine based on his racism and homophobia. Either he is hearing from the divine or he isn't. Can't really have it both ways, can you? And if you google around a bit, there are more than a few homophobic/racist things that Packer has said.
      The other thing is that Mormons are entering into MOR's (often unfairly to the straight spouse) killing themselves, etc. because of policies that Packer, yes among others, makes. Literally dying because of the doctrine. Packer can't just be dismissed as on old man with old ideas - not when he has a part in developing doctrine that is affecting millions of Mormon followers.
      Mixed message - follow and believe the leaders but not if they say racist/homophobic stuff - just dismiss that. How does that work?

    9. I can understand the reason that you think that. I don't agree.

      There is not any 1 individual that is making policy and doctrine. It is a group of men.

      I agree that Packer has said racist things and homosexuality. I do not think he was speaking for the entire church. I think he was speaking his opinion. And I think he was wrong. And I am okay with that. I don't think that what he said was ever supported fully in a quorum meeting.

      This is actually supported by the statement YOU made. They redacted part of it. The quorum didn't agree with it.

      It isn't a mixed message TO ME. I listen to what they say and I find inspiration and hope in their words. I am drawn to the words of Jeffrey Holland and Henry B Eyering and Uchtdof.

      I don't believe that they are perfect men saying perfect things all the time. I do believe that they are honest men who have dedicated their lives to understanding God and helping others to do the same. And I believe that have been asked, through revelation, to serve in that capacity.

      I do not hear every word as gospel. I know that other people do.

      Packer, specifically isn't dismissed by me. He is much more than a racist, homophobe. His words are easily dismissed by me as I don't see them as doctrinal at all.

      I can understand if you find inconsistency or rationalization in my words. Hopefully, you will be able to understand, also, that I do not feel any inconsistency or rationalization AND I reserve the right to change my mind as I grow and learn new things.

  42. I think he doth protest too much. And I think he should spend less time tending to other people's "little factories" and more time tending to his own. Just my opinion.

    1. With all sincerity, can you explain what you mean by "little factories" It is a term I am not familiar with.


  43. My husband came home tonight and said "What did you do? The number of readers on my my blog jumped way up!" Me(rather sheepishly): "I might have mentioned your blog in a comment on Josh Weed's blog." He was thrilled! So, thank you to all who went on over to! It made my hubby's day! And, by the way, his latest post, "Maybe I'm Not Gay Enough" is THE most hilarious thing I've ever read! Seriously! Just don't read it on a full bladder! You have been warned.

    1. I read several of his posts and I just found it all so sad. Deeply sad. People will jump on this comment but it is just heartbreaking more than anything else that masturbation, which is healthy and normal, is being taught to be a form of sexual addiction. And his belief that living a gay life is a bad thing . . . sad.
      So not only does he have to struggle with never living a gay life but he also has been taught that masturbation = sexual addiction.
      He's a good writer I think. And there is a a, I don't know how to say it really, but like a tone of trying to joke about his situation - a situation that has him backed into a corner.
      Feel free to disagree and jump up and down and etc., but it's what I see. It's okay, you can see something different.

    2. I personally feel as though many married people (?) feel "excessive" masterbation especially accompanied by porn, is unhealthy for a relationship.

      In my opinion it can start to "replace" the natural turn on of your spouse, and undermine the extreme importance of physical intimacy with in a monogamous relationship.

      I have never felt within the LDS church masterbation = sexual addiction. I feel it says many things in excess can be detrimental to your health, weather it is physical or emotional or mental. I could be wrong.

      I am sad you internalize so much of other peoples trials (as they perceive them).

    3. There are tons of studies that have concluded that sexual addiction is a very real thing. It has physical affects on a man's ability to get an erection with his wife. Addiction is controlling the man and his wife can feel the disconnect. As with any other addiction, it often escalates into hiring prostitutes or multiple affairs. It feeds off shame and lies and can easily destroy a family.

      Not everyone who has ever masturbated is a sex or lust addict. But, if HE says he is... I would tend to believe him.

      I can't imagine why anyone would put this label on himself if he weren't trying to move past the shame of an addiction and life his life in the light.

      What I find sad is that our society has decided that sexual pleasure doesn't have side-effect causes and we seem to teach that if it feels good RIGHT NOW... don't look into the future.

  44. Lolly's right. Schmidt's does make the most heavenly treats. Never had a Dunford doughnut though. Sadly... I hear they are amazing. :D

  45. Maybe you didn't see, but in an earlier post he revealed that pornography use at work had lost him his job. I would call that a strong indication of addiction. Not all porn use is addiction, but some definitely is, and I wouldn't be comfortable trying to make that classification for anyone other than myself.

  46. Oh yes, porn can definitely be a horrible, marriage-threatening addiction. But I still maintain that masturbation - not talking about porn addiction here - is healthy and normal. once it is demonized though, people can indeed begin to view it as an addiction.
    And also, this guy has had to give up ever being with a man - if he is looking at a little porn once in awhile, there are worse things. Now if he is looking at porn every day or feels controlled by it, different story.
    Anyway, my point wasn't doubting his porn addiction - or more precisely his belief that he has one - it was more the whole demonization of masturbation. For example, telling a teenage boy that masturbation is wrong and a sin will often lead to incredible shame to the boy that is unnecessary. I think this is one of the reasons Mormons marry so young - all that repressed sexual need.

  47. I'm honestly surprised at the amount of comments with a judgmental undertone, coming from people who didn't set foot in this conference whatsoever, and have really no idea what was shared. I agree, the pamphlet had a "you can get ' fixed'!" tone to it, which is troubling. There are still plenty of things, wording especially, that needs improvement, but the actual message was far from convincing people they ought to look into turning straight. I went to the conference, and all that was shared was a message of unconditional love. Also, during the second half we heard from people who are gay, and many of them had gay experiences, lived with partners for years, and decided that's not what they wanted - for personal reasons.

    And this is the part I think some are missing, and the reason why it feels to me so many of these comments are going in circles:

    We should understand and respect that not everyone has the same belief system - the key word being respect, even if we can't understand or agree with their beliefs. Some people don't believe in mormon doctrine, while others do. If you're against dogma, I respect you, and I won't dare think for a second "oh, poor lost soul". Because that would be disrespectful to your beliefs, while you're perfectly happy in your beliefs. However, I stick to my religious beliefs, for intimately personal reasons, and I just ask for the same respect in return. Reading comments like "how sad he will never be with a man" simply shows a complete lack of respect for an individual's perceptions and feelings. Whatever the reason, that's the path they chose. I don't ever say "how sad that monk will never chat it up with friends". I talk up a storm, and it would go against my essence and nature to take a vow of silence. It would literally drive me insane. But for others, that elevates them even if it is a sacrifice, and it's how they find spiritual fulfillment - which they have as a priority, and that's their genuine choice. So I honor their choice, and feel only admiration that they are strong enough to carve out such a unique path for themselves, simply because that's what they feel is what will make them better, happy, fulfilled - even though I simply cannot see how. But nonetheless, I don't expect the other shoe to drop, I don't call upon the dooms that could happen and have happened to so many others who tried and failed. I do recognize certain things sure aren't the norm, but I send positive thoughts their way, so they may continue their journey in a way that fulfills them, as long as *they* feel they're living what they've honestly have freely opted to live.

    I don't think that's so hard - maybe I'm wrong. The realist in me fears for people going through painful experiences because they're trying to subdue physical urges, but I've had enough experiences of my own to know that when people value spirituality and make that a priority they will find true joy and fulfillment - even if that means giving up and sacrificing things others cannot fathom.

    The conference was amazing. No one got told they can cure their gayness. That wasn't even hinted, as a matter of fact, Josh stated he doesn't believe it can happen. Josh and Lolly were amazing. Other people on stage were amazing. There was absolutely no judgment in the room, only love, acceptance, support, and more love. There was also the strong knowledge that God loves all His children, no matter what. I'm truly glad Josh went, and spoke, and shared his experiences. It was an incredibly uplifting experience.