Tuesday, August 08, 2006

Over-indulgence

It’s kind of surreal to read about yourself in the news. The comment banter weighing out your worth and wisdom is another experience altogether. I mistakenly thought that I would get lots more comments on my own blog after the Tribune article was published, but I’ve found most people come quietly to read and then go somewhere else to whisper their incredulous disbelief at the spectacle that is me.

But, folks, this is the good ol’ WorldWideWeb. I can hear you. I will now indulge in sarcastically responding to your stupidity.

Children
The unforgiveable part is the fact that they are *breeding*... I feel very, very sorry for their children.
-ortizzle

Excuse me, I was out for a moment beating my son. You were saying? Oh yes, discussing my breeding habits… like I’m a dog. Well, you’ll be happy to know that I’ve successfully avoided DHS for 2 years now. I’ll pass along your condolences to my brilliant and well-adjusted toddler.


If you are gay and must get married--have a vasectomy. Children should not be made to pay for the ups and downs of your personal fullfillment odyssey.
-lovestone

I certainly hope you will do the same. Children should not be raised by ignorant bigots with Hitler-like agendas.


It is something else entirely to gamble with the emotional well-being of the children who are brought into the situation.
-Diogenes

And yet I’ve seen in all the comments thus far not one shred of actual evidence that what we’re doing is bad for the kids. Even if the numbers were out there, it wouldn’t be a “gamble”. Where you fall in the distribution of a bell curve is not necessarily random.

The poor wife
This is a marriage that we know (and the partners know) is almost certain to fail.
-Diogenes

No, we’re quite confident that we won’t fail, actually.


And I thought the women who married death row prisoners were nuts. I can't imagine marrying a guy who is openly gay. I just can't.
-Jennifer in Ohio

Well, if being nuts is a requirement, you’re well on your way.


Essentially, these are marriages of social convenience….
Would you want your daughter to enter such a marriage?
-MikeInWeHo

No, Mike, I can only hope she’ll be lucky enough to find a death row prisoner instead.

Motivations
Ben in the article said he chose his heart over his libido. Sounds noble, sure, but it’s wishful thinking.
-slm

Following your heart… dreaming the impossible dream… such stupid concepts. Don Quixote is such an ass. I hope the windmill chops him in half. We realists know there are no happy endings ever.


I think that the folks who enter into these marriages are probably somewhat naive about what they’re dealing with.
-pjj

What the hell? I just married a straight woman? What was I thinking? Why didn’t I actually give this some thought and research a little bit first? Why didn’t I ask the advice of every cynic on the web first? Why, why, why???

There is conservative critique, and then there is moving into outright self-hatred manifesting as political expression.
-Jason Pitzl-Waters

Okay, this wasn’t about me, but it does show the profoundly stupid notion that anyone who feels anything less than disdain for ex-gay therapy is filled with self-hate. Please.

Church
Seriously, he's gay - great! He should live his life that way and not spend a life-time feeling guilty and trying to make it match what a man-made religion thinks he should be doing with his life. HIS life. Not theirs, as much as they make think so.
-Bea

Can you please highlight the part of the article that says that our church dictated anything, anything at all about our decision, and send it over?


Wow. Repression-o-rama. I can't imagine how hard it would be to be told that your natural, normal attractions are wrong, and immoral and you must (should?) marry someone contrary to that attraction. Sad for all involved.
-Heather

Again, highlighter? Must/should where? Just because we did something you don’t understand doesn’t mean we were coerced.


So I can understand why the two of them would want to try a mixed-marriage like this, but it was done "right" by the church for all the Wrong reasons.
-Eli
The wrong reasons being love and commitment? Cuz that’s where we started from.

The confused gay

Has it never occurred to you that God created you homosexual for a reason, perhaps to help others of His creation become more honest, more compassionate, and more loving? And that, by living your life either in control of your "same-sex attraction" and closeted, or "openly gay" yet married to someone of the opposite sex for the sake of procreation was actually living a life contrary to God's plan for you?
-Anon1

I sincerely hope that the road ahead for you is far less painful than the obvious mine field I see you've laid out for yourself. Remember, it's never too late to be true to your authentic self. And by doing so, only then will you be true to God's plan for you.
-Anon2


I'm always amazed at the silly argument that God created us this way for a reason. Did he create someone with six fingers that way for a reason? (They're in big trouble for lopping of the spare, first chance they get!) What about someone stupid, should they feel satisfaction at maintaining allegiance to their true ignorant self by trying not to open their mind to new points of view? Are they more "authentic" as a dumbass? Maybe what God wants us to learn from being gay is humility, not complacency and self-justification.

Eventually, these gay people who are married to straights will either decide to accept they are gay and leave their current relationships or be very miserable up to and including suicide.
-golexx

Says the Oracle of Delphi. I've seen examples of great mixed-orientation marriages, and I've seen the bad ones. But they're not me, and so really I have to go by the specifics of our situation, something you know nothing about. I have a healthy attitude toward counseling and professional assistance, as does my wife. Our marriage by every measure imaginable is more harmonious and nurturing than 99% of my coworkers and friends as near as I can tell. We’re both happy. We both laugh like hell. And I think we’ll be fine.

I acknowledge a lot of this is out of context, but it gives you a feel for the discussion. And it's been cathartic for me to indulge in a little sassiness directed at what I see occasionally as rancorous ignorance.

32 comments:

Chris (hurricane) said...

Maybe what God wants us to learn from being gay is humility, not complacency and self-justification.

You know, you could have just ended the sentence with "humility." Instead, you set up that nice little dichotomoy and have me rolling my eyes as I say to myself, "Oh, I see... his path is humility, and mine is complacency and self justification. Got it."

Chris (hurricane) said...

It’s kind of surreal to read about yourself in the news.

I didn't read about myself in the news, but it was surreal when I read what others had to say about me when I went public on my blog.

I know we come to different conclusions about our sexuality, but I think you did the right thing by participating in the interview. It was brave.

-L- said...

Chris, you'll be happy to know when I wrote "complacency and self-justification" I paused and thought about you and almost deleted it. But I was pissed and the commenters in question didn't seem to be worthy of the same goodwill I have for your situation. In general, I know I could be wrong, but I think some (but not all) folks who believe God is okay with their gayness do so out of complacency and self-justification.

And my path is rarely humility. But I try.

Chris (hurricane) said...

In general, I know I could be wrong, but I think some (but not all) folks who believe God is okay with their gayness do so out of complacency and self-justification.

Actually, all the gay people who I have known who take seriously the idea of God have struggled with whether or not he is okay with it.

Many people don't take God seriously, and in not taking God seriously, they may appear to you as self justifying and complacent. And maybe they are. But coming to terms with your sexuality and coming out is hard and for the vast majority of gay people shouldn't be dismissed as an exercise in complacency and self justification.

But I know you were stung by what people were saying about you (I was too, for what it's worth, especially the comments about your children) so I understand. I just didn't want that piece of your response to go unchallenged.

-L- said...

Fair enough.

And as we've discussed before, perhaps the reason I'm willing to project "complacency and self justification" on others is that I truly believe that's what it would be in my case, were I to leave my marriage and my church because of my homosexuality.

Chris (hurricane) said...

L: It doesn't surprise me that you think that, given your acceptance of Mormonism. But I think you are too hard on yourself.

Scot said...

I can’t help but feel a hopeless sadness at this. When people talk about another’s family in such terms, it’s cruel, dehumanizing, and can’t help but cause anger. (I know you have to fire back, but watch where you’re aiming. I know I’ve had my problems aiming at such times :-))

A couple years ago we were in the tribune and got all sorts of grief, from my mother “in-law”’s boss making her cry, to a death threat. The sad irony to me is that we got many of the same accusations regarding our family (selfishness, naiveté, recklessness, and so on), as you are getting to yours. Simply sad.

Stenar said...

hehe... what fun to see my comment on Blurbomat reprinted here.
I am the founder and chair of gayRMs, a social group for former Mormon missionaries who are gay. We have over 1,000 members on our email list.
I am also working on a documentary film about gay Mormons, which will be finished in the next month.
I used to do marketing for the Sundance Film Festival and one year they featured a doc about gay Orthodox Jews called "Trembling Before G-D." The filmmakers hosted a discussion during the festival (which they filmed and can be seen on the DVD), wherein a married gay/straight Mormon couple participated and said all these rosey, lovely things about how their marriage worked and all the same things you say on this blog about how they were going to last forever.
I ran into the husband only two months later and he'd already left his wife and was living with a guy he met online. That's just one example of hundreds I know of.
In short, I know thousands of gay Mormons and 99% of the ones who got married ended up very miserable, divorced and finally happy once they accepted they were gay and moved on. (The other 1% killed themselves.)

Master Fob said...

One thing that people like Stenar neglect to acknowledge is that the majority of gay Mormons (or gay anythings) who are happily married are not open about their homosexuality, which skews statistics--scientific or otherwise--to the side of the Out & Divorced crowd. I'm not saying the number of success stories is phenomenal, but I know they exist, and even if they didn't it would be silly to say that you or I can't do something just because nobody else has. Ultimately, statistics mean nothing.

Anonymous said...

I'm one too I guess.Iwasn't into blogging untill I read the link to the article. I liked it. I'm thankful for it.
I'm glad that there are ppl out here trying to do their best, just like I.
I'm glad that you have a sharp tongue and know how to defend yourself.
I think I'll start reading more of these "gay"straightmarried mormom blogs...
Thank you for your faith and strength.
Ken

-L- said...

Scot, I'm sorry if any of my bullets grazed you. Based on your kind words and what little I know of you, you are the type of person I really will regret if I inadvertently offend.

Kim Mack said...

Wow, Stenar. Quite a statistic there. I can give you some, too, being the Administrator of an online support group (www.disciples2.org) for the past 12 years. I don't have exact numbers, other than the 1 suicide we had a few years ago. But we do have many, many men who are married, many of those are happy, and abiding by the church seems to be something that brings them joy.

But then again, all 300 of us must be in complete denial.

Kim Mack said...

Oh, and L - I loved your response. One of the many reasons I love you! ;)

-L- said...

Stenar, pretty much the only thing I have to say to you is: please, please stop leaving comment spam on all my favorite blogs. It's just not right no matter how many hundreds of thousands of people like me you know.

AttemptingThePath said...

haha -L- you rock, just fyi

Scot said...

No worries, -L-. If I keep checking in, I’m 100% certain you’ll eventually offend me :-). I’ll offend you too. It’s inevitable, with such differences (and similarities) in positions. Just as long as it’s not meant and we leave the kids out of it, I’m sure both of us can brush it off.

Chris (hurricane) said...

L offends me all the time, but I just call him on it and we kiss and make up. He does the same with me.

Only a gay man could be as fabulous as L. ;)

Scot said...

What was the point of that, stenar? You think you're doing the right thing here,?

Think about it, these men have wives and children, and they have made some very solemn and important promises. Think of all the many people depending on that. They are parents, stenar.

I have to wonder, if you really want them to believe your “statistics”, that their fate is divorce or suicide? Did you post that “fact” because you would want them to pick divorce and go out and find a gay man? I ardently hope not, and that you were just acting out of some perceived offense you think their lives reflect on you. (Though, sure, some may insult you directly, and you may have a case there ;-), but not here as far as I can tell.)

I hope I’ve assumed too much. But, if not, it’s this kind of gay-first thinking and attack that would loose what gays have gained as far as a place in this culture, and, if it truly were the “gay agenda”, gays would deserve the loss.

Oldenburg said...

I'm always amazed at the silly argument that God created us this way for a reason. Did he create someone with six fingers that way for a reason? (They're in big trouble for lopping of the spare, first chance they get!)

I assume you aren't intending to insinuate that are you and other gays are deformed like those with excess appenages, but that's how it read the first time through.

Ferny Pants said...

Hey, Stenar,
Have you ever considered that you attract that which you exude? Why would any succesful gay/straight Mormon couple want to associate with you, ever?

Em said...

I haven't kept up with all of the commenting here, it breaks my head. But I read an article or two, followed my nose, and found your blog. I just want to tell you that you're a really remarkable person to be doing what you're doing. I can't say that I relate to your situation - I'm sure it's a rare find, someone that does - but I was really moved by some of the things you said. You and your wife deserve all of the support in the world. You sound like kind and thoughtful parents. I am a lesbian and a single mother, only nominally connected to Mormonism in that I know a few of them and have read a bit, but I know that the sort of love that parents have for their children is strong enough to overcome many, many obstacles. Good for you for admitting your weaknesses, staying true to your beliefs about God, and good for your wife for loving you in spite of difficulties I can only imagine. Best wishes.

Stenar said...

Comment spam on all your favorite blogs? Uhh... I only posted one comment on your blog.

Well, that and the original one on Blurbomat which led me to your post where you quoted my comment on Blurb.

Why do you get so mad, L? Does the truth hurt?

Samantha said...

I WANT to comment about your post, but I can't--you said it all most eloquent -L-.

However, for you, Sir Stenar--It only takes one well-placed comment of poor taste to place it in the category of SPAM--hence, the name. But perhaps you enjoy the meaty repast...

And yes, I know the lunchmeat really has nothing to do with the coining of the cyberspace term, but you have to admit, there are certain things the two have in common...I'll leave it to your limited intelligence to figure out what those are. Perhaps that will keep you busy enough that you won't be posting another one for awhile.

Chris (hurricane) said...

I think he gets mad because you're being an asshole.

I'm gay. I was married. I'm in the process of ending my marriage and moving into a new phase of life as openly and happily gay. I'm doing what the gay community encourages me to do--I'm being true to myself. But I have kids. And their mother is still family to me. And I feel closer to L on this than I do to you, out and proud gay man.

L is a son, a father, a husband and a friend. Whether or not you disagree with his choices or think you know better about what lies ahead, he certainly deserves to be treated with greater respect than you have shown him. He's your gay brother. Stop judging him.

Chris (hurricane) said...

My post was directed to stenar.

Anonymous said...

Maybe come people do come and read and go quietly away. I for one COMMEND you. It's not easy doing what the Lord wants. This life is not easy - but, if it was, it wouldn't be a test then would it?

Gay LDS Actor said...

You know, I think each person needs to follow their own path, whatever that path may be. I applaud both -l- and chris (hurricane) for doing what they each feel they need to do. Who's to say that either choice is right or wrong for each of them, respectively? That's why comments like stenar's bother me somewhat. Just because a choice doesn't seem valid to you doesn't mean it isn't appropriate for the person making that choice. Each person has their own road to follow. I've got my own path to work out; I'm certainly in no position to judge what is appropriate for someone else.

-L- said...

Stenar, just for clarification... I wasn't talking about your comment on this post, I was talking about comments you've left on many blogs (including this one) over the last several months that had no relevant dialog whatsoever, merely a link to stuff you sell online. Spam comment. Evil. Please don't do it ever again.

Your comments here and now don't make me angry in the least. Spam comments? Well, that's another story. Spam is what's wrong with the net.

Stenar said...

kim mack, "The fact that an opinion is widely held is absolutely no evidence that it is not utterly absurd."
-Bertrand Russell

-L- said...

And your reason for bringing up you have over 1000 on your e-mail list was what? I think Kim's response was tit for tat. You can be absurd as easily as those who fall in line with Kim.

-L- said...

By the way I love that quote. Russell rocks.

The Practical Mormon said...

Mwha-ha-ha! Love, love, love! your replies to idiots! Hysterical. Thank you for a good belly laugh.

Your entire blog is enlightening and thought-provoking. A big thumbs up from lurker land.

-- The Practical Mormon