Saturday, December 04, 2010

Opening The Door

Suppose your whole life there was a door before you and everyone told you that what was behind it was terrible and evil and that you shouldn't open it and furthermore, if you did open it, all sorts of terrible things would happen to you.

And let's say you believed it. You believed that if you opened this door, you would find nothing but horror and guilt and misery behind it. The fear that everyone created around you in relation to this door made you so scared to open the door.

But let's say that you had such a strong, uncontrollable desire to open the door, and no matter what you did to suppress or eradicate those desires, you felt not just a desire, but an actual need to open the door. You actually thought if you didn't open the door, you would die; and yet nearly everyone around you was telling you that if you did open the door, you would die.

And let's say one day you fearfully put your hand on the knob of the door, feeling a great sense of trepidation and guilt and confusion, and yet at the same time, a feeling that not only should you open the door, but that it was actually right and good to do so.

And let's say you finally open the door, expecting to find the calamities of the world ready to pounce upon you and feed upon your very soul when, instead, you discover that what is behind the door is not at all what people told you was behind the door.

No, what is behind the door turns out to be a place filled with more love, beauty, and freedom than you could have even imagined. You discover that what is behind the door makes you more happy than you ever thought possible. It isn't at all bad like people led you to believe it would be; quite the opposite - behind that door you have found the most beautiful place you could ever reside, and it is a place you never want to leave.

And living there, you ask yourself, "Why was I so scared to open the door? Why did I believe all the awful things I was told about what was behind the door? Why did I let fear overshadow the love and joy I have discovered behind the door?"

I remember a distinct moment early in my relationship with Jonah which I wrote about here. We were on vacation at Disneyland and were quite innocently lying in bed together. I had recently confessed to Jonah that I had feelings for him, but was still very confused about how to deal with them. As I said in my post, " the morning when we woke up, Jonah started holding me, and I let him because I had wanted that all along. It just felt so nice to be held by someone I loved who loved me. It felt right, and I didn’t feel guilty. We cuddled for a bit, and he tussled my hair for a while, and I really enjoyed that... ...I just felt so happy to be in his arms."

I remember feeling so good being in his arms, but still fighting the feeling that it felt right and good because I had been told for so long that it wasn't. It took a while to let myself "walk through the door," and heaven praise Jonah for being patient and understanding and compassionate enough to stick around while I decided whether or not I actually wanted to go through the door.

Well, I'm through the door, baby, and all I can say is, I'm so, so glad I opened the door. I have absolutely no regrets in doing so. None.


The Faithful Dissident said...

I can't help but see the parallel with Adam and Eve partaking of the forbidden fruit (at least the Mormon version of the story).

“My eyes are opened, and in this life I shall have joy.”

Moses 5:10

Dad's Primal Scream said...

I love your analogy. Unfortunately, I've also seen people who open the door and purposefully rush to connect with the seedy and unhealthy community there - because that exists too. And then that's all they see. They don't look around and so they rush back to the other side of the door and say, "Oh my goodness! It IS bad over there."

What I mean is that they come out and frequent gay bars and perhaps experiment with things that are unhealthy, perhaps they don't find love very easily, are lonely and they equate that with "Being Gay." They create a false dichotomy in their minds. The truth is that the other side of the door contains a LOT of possibilities... one of which is love and wholeness as you've described. IF a person looks for that.

Gay LDS Actor said...

That is true, Dad's Primal Scream. I fortunately was blessed enough not to fall into those pitfalls. In fact, Jonah is the first and only man I've ever been with (and likewise for him), and I am very glad it worked out that way.

Joe Conflict said...

Thank you for sharing that moment about you and Jonah. I went on a trip with a fellow I'm dating, and frankly, it was extremely hard for me to just mentally relax and enjoy the thrill of being together. He was actually kind of upset at me because of it. I realize that the "programming" within us didn't come overnight, and won't leave us overnight. Hard lesson.

Gay LDS Actor said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Gay LDS Actor said...

It just takes time, Joe. Be patient with yourself and hope that who you're with is patient enough, too. That's one of the reasons I knew Jonah was a keeper.

MoHoHawaii said...

What a beautiful post!

Corey said...

this was incredibly beautiful! i am inspired!

J G-W said...

This pretty much says it. Well put. Excellent analogy.

Do folks in the Church realize that they undermine faith by presenting this false picture of what same-sex relationships are all about? When people "open the door" and learn firsthand about all the lies that have been told about what's behind it?

Alex Murray said...

I know I'm jumping on the train kind of late, but oh my gosh! I've been reading through your blog over the past couple of weeks and I love it! This post especially resonated with my. While I've been trying to come to terms with being gay, I've felt this way repeatedly about the closed door and being scared to open it. Even now, it's taking a lot of courage every single day to remind myself that my door exists and I need to open it. I'm actually glad that it's a slow process for me, because it had reminded me of the importance of keeping a level head.

I can't wait to keep reading your blog. It's a novel that I can't put down, or a play that I can't leave!

Gay LDS Actor said...


Oh, I'm so glad you enjoy my blog. I hope I get around to writing some more posts soon. I've been busy. But it always delights me when a reader like you shows up and says that something I have written resonates with them. That means a lot to me.

I hope whatever choices you make in life regarding your sexuality, that you will find happiness and fulfillment. The door I opened was indeed scary, but well worth it. I hope if you ever open that door, you will be as happy as I feel.

It's true that keeping a level head is important, but I also think going with your gut (whatever that is) is important, too.

I loved your last comment: "I can't wait to keep reading your blog. It's a novel that I can't put down, or a play that I can't leave!" That's so up my alley.