When I was in the MTC, I wrote a letter of confession to my President. I told him about my homosexual inclinations. I was called into an Interview. He looked at me and said “Elder Hale, Tell me about your same-sex attraction.”
I told him that I was trying not to think about it. Then he said “Good. If you even express interest in someone, that’s cause enough for you to go home early.”
“O.K. President,” said I. I had a plan. Whenever a stimuli turned the gay on, I would simply turn it off. I thought that if I put my gayness in a drawer in the back of my mind it would die.
For my first year, I remember doing quite well at turning it off. I saw attractive men from time to time that caused the gay in me to turn on. I would look away and tell myself “nope can’t think about him that way cause i’m straight!”
Even though I could “control my thoughts” by “creating a place for them to go,” as Boyd likes to remind us, the gayness in the drawer never died. I never really felt attracted to the girls in my mission and the gay turned on frequently.
I had a mission companion who was absolutely delicious! We were really good friends and I wanted something more. However, the man had his girlfriend back home and had many before her. I felt like there was no chance.
When I came home, I was no less a gay man than I was before. I learned that no matter how long I tried to starve the gay, it was still there.
Shortly after coming back, I saw John Dehlin’s Mormon Stories Interview with Carol Lyn Pearson. She talked about her marriage to a gay man. Her life and the life of her husband were truly heartbreaking. She convinced me that a woman deserves a man who is truly satisfied in her.
I also saw the movie “Up!” What a touching love story! I realized that satisfaction would come by continuing in the adventure of life with another man.