Just my rambling thoughts about being gay and Mormon

Wednesday, June 13, 2012

Mixed orientation marriage is...

The LDS media world has had multiple stories and comments the past few days about the recent coming out post by Josh Weed on his website.


The attention is not focused so much on the fact that he's gay (what's another gay Mormon?) as it is on the fact that he's married to a woman and he wrote his coming out post on their 10th anniversary.

I wish Josh and his wife well and don't really have any comment about his post other than it was very personal and I applaud him for his openness. My thoughts are centered more around the response to his blog post.

The breadth of human experience is vast enough to cover a huge variety lives. Each person's experience is legitimate in their own situation. I absolutely don't believe that one type of experience is better or worse than other...just different. For me, that is part of the wonder of life, that we each have unique (God given, if you will) characteristics, abilities, and preferences. No one path is correct for everyone.

Having lived the majority of my life in a mixed orientation relationship I know that it can be rewarding, fun, and happy. It can also be frustrating, lonely, and hard. I don't recommend it for those who need continual care and feeding from a partner. Not because your partner won't love you or try to meet your needs but because there are times when he/she won't know how. This occurs in any marriage but mixed orientation marriages are more prone to it, in my opinion. I've been very lucky. My life has been blessed with a uniquely wonderful partner. For most people, life is difficult enough without adding mixed orientations to it. 
I really don't like that many in the LDS media community have pointed to Josh's post with a "there, see it works" attitude. This attitude is typified by a comment that reads, 
"I'm single, LDS and straight and have wondered how someone could be gay and live the teachings of the gospel. I somehow always knew, absolutely KNEW it had to be possible. I will share your blog with others."

I also noticed that the majority of those who commented on Josh's post were women, many of who seemed to be trying to fit their gay friends and family into  a context of Mormon church teachings (versus, just accepting them for who they are). It appears that for many the post justified their belief that mixed orientation marriage is the way for their gay Mormon friends and relatives to be saved. The Utah Mormon media also geared their coverage of the story with this slant. Many comments also reinforced common erroneous stereotypes and for me highlighted a need for education. 
John Gustav-Wrathall linked to a new blog by Ashley, where she describes her mixed orientation marriage and how it ultimately failed. Unfortunately, it is not an unusual tale, though she writes about it in an unusually powerful and tender way. I recommend you read it.
Ashley's Blog

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