Some who misunderstand the nature of same-gender attraction would argue that one cannot experience an attraction that is so"unnatural" and still be in God's full favor. Others may claim that one should focus on "changing" and doing all within his or her power to "overcome" same-gender attraction. Although our faith in God may require us to reconcile things in our life that may influence the attraction, putting an unbalanced and unhealthy emphasis and focus on "change" as a prerequisite to happiness or divine love and favor can be counterproductive, discouraging, and emotionally exhausting.
People who experience same-gender attraction may often feel overwhelming pressure to "change" the nature of their attractions, or their sexuality-and they'll do anything to make it happen. There is a strong tendency to feel that no matter what our challenges may be, if we pray more, fast more, read scripture more, or attend church and the temple more, then we can and will "change." Yet, despite how often or how deeply and sincerely many have prayed, fasted, read scripture, or attended the temple, they have continued to experience feelings of same-gender attraction with little or no change in intensity.
We who have the challenge of same-gender attraction have a responsibility to do all we can to understand our feelings or attractions and work to alter anything that may have influenced the attraction, but it is also important to remember that those things in and of themselves cannot alter our natures in any saving way: only Christ can do that.Ty Mansfield in In Quiet Desperation
My last post may have given the impression that I favor obsessing about changing to heterosexual orientation. I don't. I'm more like Goldilocks in that famous fable, Goldilocks and the Three Queers.
Once upon a time, Goldilocks found himself discussing same-gender attraction with three LDS friends who were same-gender attracted. The first friend, who called himself PapaQueer, took a pretty militant stance about same-gender attraction. He felt his feelings were ungodly and he vowed to do anything to change them, because that's the only way he could imagine being happy and pure. He had already been through reparative therapy, fasted til he was thin as a rail, and prayed til his knees were bloody. His eyes had a fire of determination that was both a little inspiring and scary.
MamaQueer, on the other hand, believed her feelings of same-gender attraction were completely acceptable, and indeed, a vital part of who she was. She felt that even given the chance to change her sexual orientation, she would not do it because to do so would be sacrificing an integral part of herself. Her apathy was both a little comforting and scary.
Goldilocks found himself bothered by both of these queers. PapaQueer really seemed to need some therapy. He had an unhealthy self-image and seemed to be in denial. MamaQueer was much happier, but seemed to be oblivious to the conflict between her image of herself and the eternal role Goldilocks understood she could someday fulfill.
Then the wee BabyQueer spoke up. BabyQueer's view seemed just right. He accepted his same-gender attraction as an incidental part of his identity, nothing to worry about necessarily, but also as something that needed some careful attention as sexuality is an important issue. He wanted his views to deepen and mature with healthy mental attitudes and spiritual insights, and so gave the matter quite a bit of thought. "Change" was never out of the question. In fact, change seemed like the best solution and worth some investigation. However, if change were not possible, that would be okay. He planned to spend time thinking and reading on the subject, but to avoid obsessing about it or making it the primary concern of his life. Deliberate and proactive, but not obsessive.
Goldilocks wanted to kiss BabyQueer, but realized that would be counter-productive. So, he left and went to sleep because it's going to be a long night in the hospital.