When I was 18, I had my first sexual encounter with a boy. I was so scared to confess because I didn’t want my parents to find out, but eventually the guilt overcame me when I was in a meeting with the stake president about preparing for a mission. I told him I wasn’t worthy and he asked very probing questions and didn’t believe me when I told him we never actually had sex. I felt extremely uncomfortable describing all of the sexual acts my boyfriend and I had participated in but I knew that it was part of the repentance process so I told him all of the details anyways.
I then had to talk to my bishop about the same thing, and he became very angry at me. He then told me about my boyfriends previous confessions and that he believed my boyfriend was a sex addict. The council that he provided me was that my repentance process would not be complete until I had ended my relationship with this boy. I felt so guilty and ashamed and I left feeling worse about myself than ever before.
Rather than deal with the public shame of the repentance process around my parents and other close friends in the ward, I moved away before I was ready and became extremely depressed. A few years later after I got out of that relationship for unrelated reasons, and began dating another guy who was about to leave on a mission in a few months. We went a little too far one night, but decided to confess anyways because we didn’t think what we did was that serious. The stake president delayed his mission for 6 months and banned us from seeing each other, talking on the phone, or communicating in any way other than a weekly letter which was only agreed upon after begging and pleading.
We ended up secretly meeting up a few times and went too far again. We decided not to confess since the first time had made us both so miserable and messed up our life plans so drastically. He left on his mission and a month later I reported to the MTC for my mission. After only 1 day in the MTC, I felt so guilty and anxious I decided to confess. I had yet another meeting with someone in the MTC who asked many questions that made me uncomfortable and gave me a whole lesson on how kissing should be saved for marriage because it led to immoral sexual acts. They sent us both home. We were traumatized from the experience and had to deal with the fallout of our families being completely disappointed and unsupportive of our relationship. He had to attend a disciplinary counsel with men that he knew and had to go into detail about his sexual exploits. He was told that if he messed up again that he would be excommunicated.
At a certain point we decided that the expectations were set so high that we were basically doomed to fail anyways. Why would we go through even more hard times and sacrifice so much for a church that we weren’t even sure is true anymore? Especially a church that has only made us feel misery and pain instead of love and support when we make mistakes. We ended up getting married, and to this day still have not had sex due to the anxiety and guilt that I have subconsciously built up over years of nothing but negative experiences with my sexuality.