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Tuesday, December 21, 2010

Family

School is over. The holidays are upon us. I'm in Provo until tomorrow night, but I dropped my boyfriend off at the airport last Saturday. I miss him like crazy, but it's been good for him to be home with his family.

I haven't gotten this far with my personal story, but my parents didn't handle my coming out well. In all reality, I never came out to them. They forced me out. That was one night I would like to forget. Thankfully, things have gotten better, but they're no where near the point of letting me bring my boyfriend home.

His family, however, is something different. Not that they're waiting to plan our wedding or anything, but they can see the good that has come from our relationship. My boyfriend's mom is an angel, and the first time I met her she walked right up to me and wrapped her arms around me. She has been there for me in ways that my parents simply weren't able to be.

Imagine my surprise when I got a christmas card from her addressed from the whole family. Inside was a sweet note and a gift card. She is such a thoughtful woman.

Today, though, I got a text from my boyfriend. While we have never actually told her, we were pretty sure his mom knew about our relationship. But today he texted me and said "So I'm pretty sure my whole family knows we're dating." I asked him why he thought that, and he replied "Because they all just talked about how nice you are and [his older sister] was complaining to me about how she hasn't met you yet."

Having spent the last year hiding and covering up who I am, finding peace with my family only by pretending that my orientation doesn't exist, it was so nice to hear that. I could see myself spending christmas with them all, being counted as a unit with my boyfriend in the same way that his sister and her husband count as one. Having them know all about my orientation, our relationship, seeing it right in front of them, and having them love and accept me all the same.

I love my boyfriend. And the more I'm with him the more he feels like family. And the more I want to spend my life with him. And that would be a pretty good life, if you ask me.

8 comments:

"Lucky Jake" said...

Hey Ty. I'm sorry to hear about the situation with your family.

Myself, I am (happily) married (to a woman), and I often think to myself what I would do if my child were gay. Would I be willing to open my arms and home to my child's partner? If I did so, it would feel like I was betraying the Gospel-centered life I have chosen. But then I would think (and often think this about others who have chosen different lives for themselves)-- everyone does what's best for them, and who am I to assume that what's best for me, is best for you, or best for my child, or best for my (openly gay) sister?

So in answer to my own question, I would in no doubt open my arms and home to my child's partner as I would the temple-married spouse of a child, as I would the partner of my sister whom I love dearly.

My heart goes out to all those gay kids who's parents just _don't_ understand.

Take care, and I enjoy your blog. :)

Ty said...

Thanks Lucky Jake. I really appreciate the kind things you said.

And I must say, I really respect you for your life choices. Things cannot have always been easy, but it seems that you are doing what makes you happy.

I hope it never came across that I was somehow hateful of the church. In reality, I love the gospel and don't plan to leave the church. I did for a while, but then I realized how unhappy I was without God in my life.

And even though it seems unorthodox, I feel like I am living for my own happiness for the first time in my life. Just because I am gay and am in a relationship doesn't mean I can't have faith too. :)

Thanks for the comment!

Momastery said...

Ty,

We don't have to leave the church. No way, Jose. We just gotta pull a Rosa Parks on 'em.

Love you, Ty, Praying for a miracle from your family. Sounds like you already found one, though, in that boyfriend God sent you.

Peace, friend.
Glennon

Anonymous said...

Ty,

You sound awesome.

I'm also a byu student, I'm lesbian, and I have a girlfriend (sort of) ;)
My family knows, her's doesn't (yet).

And I'm with Glennon, we totally need to pull a Rosa Parks.

Tif

Ty said...

So, I may or may not have met you. Just fyi. Haha!

But I wonder sometimes if the same type of tactics used in the civil rights movement would work with the church. I remember a political science class I had where the professor made the point that what works with government (i.e. protests, petitions, etc.) doesn't work with BYU and the church. Can you imagine a protest on campus? That would last all of two seconds. Haha!

I do think that awareness is a huge way that things will change in the LDS culture, though. I went to a panel a few weeks ago where gay and lesbian BYU students talked about what it's like. Members of the community, as well as students came. It was really great, and I think things like that will slowly but surely make a difference.

I've talked to a few friends about it, and they said that they want to come to the next one.

Anyway, it's good to know that we're not alone out there on campus!

Ty said...

By the way, read this post on Glennon's blog. It's absolutely beautiful.

http://momastery.blogspot.com/2010/10/mountain-im-willing-to-die-on.html?commentPage=2

Anonymous said...

Thanks, Ty.

I've read the blog by Glennon and that's actually how I found your blog.

Perhaps you have met me then...I helped put the panel together, and I was actually on the panel.

I'm glad to hear that you thought it went well. We're planning another panel for the end of January. I hope that raising awareness will make a difference. My goals really aren't to overthrow the church or anything, but I do want to raise awareness and make it easier for people to stick with the church if that's what they want. Mostly, I want to help people to love themselves, because I feel like that has been the most important step in my life.

Tif

Ty said...

Tif, I will definitely be there at the next panel. And yes, I was right in guessing that I knew you. Though, we've never actually talked in person.

Anyway, I totally agree with you statement about learning to love yourself, because that has been what made the big difference in my life over the past year. I haven't gotten to this part in my retrospection series, but a year ago I had a huge crisis of faith and self-worth because everything was coming into conflict. But now I can look in the mirror and see true happiness in my eyes because I have learned not only to tolerate myself, but to love myself for the qualities that I have. Really, that has made all the difference, and in my book is #1 in a list of things that a young gay person needs as he or she progresses.

Thanks for your work, and I look forward to the next panel!

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