I knew I was gay as early as I was 8. All I knew is that what I felt was wrong and evil. That was constantly reiterated at church for the next decade of my life. The amount of self loathing and shaming was crippling at times. No one knew. When I was 11, I made the ultimatum that if anyone knew that I was gay that I would kill myself. So I decided to hide and be the “straightest person” I could possibly be.
I was the first group of eligible 18 year old missionaries and it came time to go on the mission. I knew that I was naturally unworthy. Not because I did anything wrong, but because of what I was taught. I knew I had to tell my bishop because it was the “right thing to do”.
He sat me in his office and I cried for 15 minutes without saying a word. Here I was a 17 year old boy (who was the current seminary president and first assistant to the bishop) about to face my ultimatum made 6 years prior. I finally told him.
I immediately regret that decision. His following questions made me feel utterly uncomfortable and hopeless and shamed. “How bad is it?” ……. what? How do I respond to that? “…… I’m I don’t know?” I said. “We really have to gauge how bad this is. On a scale of 1-10 how bad? Again ….. what?? “Um 6?” And then the worst question. “If a naked man and a naked woman were in the room with us right now who would you go for?” I was shocked. I immediately retreated and didn’t want to talk anymore.
For the next 4 months we met every single Sunday for at least two hours where he stopped the progress of my papers, told me I couldn’t serve a mission, wouldn’t stop talking to me about masturbation and how that would lead to further homosexual feelings, shamed me into not telling my parents and even threaten me with telling them.
Meanwhile my best friend had just decided to come back to church and go on a mission. He met with the SAME bishop and told him he just got a blow job from his girlfriend. My friend wasn’t even slapped on the wrist. He was able to continue to take the sacrament and everything. No repercussions. He got his mission call months before I was eventually allowed to get a call.
Bishop roulette With the same bishop.