Monday, September 27, 2010

What Would You Do?

I need some help.

In the post about my mission years, I told you all about my favorite missionary companion – the one who prodded me to out myself to my mission president (unknowingly), and who later told me he suspected that I was gay.
Well, I was having dinner with some friends this last weekend. One of our friends has been dating a guy for about a year, and this was the first time we had met him. When he found out I was a returned missionary, he asked me where I served. After I told him, he immediately asked me if I knew “Elder So-and-So,” which is this missionary I happened to reference.
I told him I did, and he proceeded to tell me that the next time I saw him, to let him know that “Guy’s Name Here” misses him.
My mouth just about fell open.
To make a long story short, this favorite companion of mine had quite a senior year of high school having multiple flings, and one serious relationship – all of which this dinner friend claimed were sexual. He even said that Elder So-and-So told his best friend (who was and still is “Guy’s Name Here”) that if he could stay home from his mission and get married to him, he would. Unfortunately, that would be sinful.
As we talked about Elder So-and-So more fully, it became apparent that some of the same things we talked about as missionaries were directly linked to how he would “feel out” the men he knew would keep quiet in high school!
Needless to say, I’m rather shocked that I would pour out my soul to this person at a mission reunion just a few months before my excommunication (or was it after? I can’t remember), and he told me NOTHING.
Ok, I do understand that, actually… but here is the problem.

Elder So-and-So is recently married.
The one thing I would hate to happen is for him to be going through all of the alone-ness, the “tabooed” hush about the subject falling over his entire life. I don’t want him to bottle it all up until one day it just doesn’t work anymore. Being on MY side of the fence does provide some insight to how I would live and how I could make it work on the OTHER side of the fence. But would he benefit from that?
Maybe he’s figured it all out for himself. Maybe when he professed his love for “Guy’s Name Here” it was just experimentation and confusion. Maybe he’s bisexual, and perfectly happy in his marriage. I have no way of knowing without asking and him giving an honest answer.

So do I confront him, at least extending a hand as someone who he can talk to honestly and freely, with no judgments or suggestions as to what he should or shouldn’t do? Is it possible he would benefit from knowing the stories of some of the readers here who have been in mixed-orientation marriages so that he doesn’t make the same mistakes, or does the things right that some of you have done?

Or do I keep my mouth shut, and just be ready to help him pick up the pieces?

I'm sure we all know missionaries we've suspected as being gay (or at least secretly hoped, haha).  This one is literally that missionary, not just a missionary - he's one I would call a best friend for life. 

What would you do?

Tuesday, September 21, 2010

A Simple Observation

Just for the record, I have yet to actually taste a single cake that is really "better than sex..."

I'm just sayin'.

Monday, September 13, 2010

September 12, 2010 = Three Years

Yesterday was our three year anniversary, and it was nice to spend the day together. We had free tram passes up at Snowbird, so we took a ride up to Hidden Peak, walked around for a bit (and went through the tunnel, which was pretty cool), and then rode down on the chair lift. Oktoberfest was in full swing, so we stopped by a few vendors (we had to see if the Scentsy table had the new scents! – They didn’t.  I'll try to hide my dissapointment so as to not out-gay myself), and enjoyed a nice drive through the canyon before coming back to the house for a steak dinner (which Adam grilled to perfect medium-well).
So in honor of such an occasion, I figured I’d tell all you readers out there a bit more about how we met and ended up together, because it is quite a fun story.

We met online (the site will remain confidential, lol, but let’s just say it wasn’t a very wholesome one) when he started chatting with me. Now as much as I love the internet and technology, I really don’t like to get to know people over MSN Messenger or any of the other IM incarnations.  After hours of working in front of a computer screen, coming home to another one just isn't my cup of tea – so after a few chat sessions and an assurance that Adam wasn’t going to take me into a field somewhere and cut me into itty-bitty bits, I asked him if he would like to go for dinner. He agreed, and a few nights later I texted him to make sure we were still on for our date.

I found out later (much later), that he actually thought I was a bit pushy about meeting live. In my mind, I asked him to dinner, he agreed, and then I texted to make sure we were still on for that evening. In his mind, the fact that I actually planned dinner, and planned to stick with the plan was a bit over-the-top (which I understand now. The site we met on wasn’t exactly known for its “personal meetings” to be of the “real date” variety, so I’m sure he first thought that I was just trying to meet up to hook up, ha!). He also told me later that he usually stood up people who got relegated to his“too pushy” category, but for some reason, he decided to open the door when I actually showed up.

At the time I had a roommate who, I now believe, was seriously trying to sabotage me. Whether he did that to me on purpose or particularly enjoyed just being a jerk to everyone, I’m still not sure (although I suspect the former). Either way, I showed up wearing possibly the most hideous shirt possible. I don’t even remember where I got it, but it was cool probably ten years ago (I had a high school "friend who was a girl" - not to be confused with "girl friend" ask to borrow it once, so you can imagine my confusion when I discoverd, ten years later, that it wasn't in style anymore). It was a medium gray, slightly glossy fabric (ok, it wasn’t TOO shiny – not even I was that dumb) with a big black bar at the top. Adam told me later that as soon as he opened the door he almost closed it on me simply over the shirt. I have to admit that my personal evaluation of what he was wearing wasn’t exactly the best either, but I'm sure whatever he was wearing at that point was from American Eagle, so he had me beat. Ah… I had a lot to learn about fashion, and our tastes have since matured greatly.

So with everything stacked up against us – my ugly shirt, my assertiveness, the fact that he was chatting me up on a hookup site, etc., we headed off to Johnny Carinos for an Italian meal.

When did I finally hook him, you may ask gentle reader? Well, according to him, it was just a few steps outside his front door, when I actually opened the door to my car for him. I guess that was the moment that made him start thinking that perhaps I might be different.

On the car drive to the restaurant we had the obligatory “what are you looking for this to be,” conversation. I told him that I had been out of a five month relationship about three months prior, and was looking to date a lot of people, get a feel for the gay community, and experience what I felt I had been missing - not looking for a serious relationship. He was in the same boat, and told me that he was looking to have fun on our date, but had no intentions of falling in love, and that he actually was keeping his options open because he was currently pursuing a couple of other guys.

Dinner was fantastic. We spent the evening talking about our families. I found him easy to talk to, and learned a lot about him. He told me that he couldn't believe he talked that much and that he didn’t mean to give me a complete rundown of his life, but I just couldn't stop asking him questions. By the time we left we even knew the names of each other’s siblings.

After that first date we became inseparable. I had told him that I was about to start another semester at school, and that I was sure as soon as I started that I wouldn’t have any time to see him, but we managed to see each other every day. Often, he would drive out to Magna (where I was living at the time) at 10 o’clock at night after my classes to eat a frozen meal with me before I went to bed. On the weekends, he would cook at his apartment in Sugarhouse, and I would usually spend the whole weekend there, going back to Magna only to drop off or pick up a few things.

After about four weeks, in mid-September, we had just finished dinner and it was time for me to go to bed. It was a weeknight, so Adam was at my apartment in Magna. I walked him to the door, thanked him for spending time with me, and told him to drive safe and that I would see him tomorrow. He kissed me good night, and I again wished him a good night… and then it happened. I said, “I love you.”

I think the color must have drained from my face, and the look on his was nothing but shock. I didn’t even give him a chance to respond. I thought perhaps I could explain, but I think I only got out “I mean… I… uh…” before I just closed the door on him. I had only known him for a month! How could I possibly had let THAT one slip out.

The next morning I got a text message from him. I don’t remember exactly what it said, but it was something along the lines of, “Did you mean what you said last night? Because if you did… … … you too.”

The rest is kind of a blur. I don’t remember if it was that day or a few days later that we had the “yes, we are going to date and going to be exclusive” talk – all I know is that it happened much more quickly than I expected. September 12th was almost exactly a month from the day we had met (I’m pretty sure our first date was Tuesday, August 14th, 2007), but we figured if we were going to spend every day together anyway, we might as well jump into the deep end and see if we could swim together. I’m happy to say that these last three years have been more than treading water. We’ve learned how to synchronize swim (ok, stupid metaphor, haha). Occasionally, one of us slips up and the other has to pull him up before he gets his hair wet (oh the horror of horrors!), but we’re pretty sure we’ll be swimming together for the long haul – and there isn’t anyone I’d rather be… ahem… stroking with (ok, DEFINITELY time to leave this metaphor).

Yesterday, I bought Adam a cheesy chick-flick that we had seen together last Valentine’s day. If you haven’t seen “When in Rome,” I have to warn you: it has its moments, but it definitely isn’t the best movie we’ve ever seen. Still, I remember sitting in the movie theater with Adam’s hand resting sweetly on my thigh, thinking “Wow, I actually have everything the girl in this movie is wishing for” – and how many times have we LDS gay boys sat through one of those dang romantic comedies blaming the fact we hated it on our “manliness” (something we and the straight guys finally had in common), while our gay side secretly loved the movie and we were really hating it because of the agony we felt wondering if we would ever find love as wonderful as the fake love the fake couple in the movie did?

Sitting in that movie, I knew I had it - and not the fake kind, but the kind every person in that theater wished they had. I gave Adam’s hand a squeeze and sighed.

To my love: You are my wish come true. Thank you for ignoring my ugly shirt and going to dinner with me anyway ;). Here’s to another 70 or 80 years, and probably a few more ugly shirts.