Saturday, March 26, 2016

Bye & Stuff

Thanks for listening.

I'm done writing about me.

I don't care to listen to myself write about me anymore, so I ain't gonna.

Off to one of my myriad other blogs.


Tuesday, March 1, 2016

Membership Is Absolutely Not an Option & I Quit

Well... I've had arguably the weirdest couple weeks of my life, leading to some serious introspection.

I have thus far spent virtually no time really considering the idea and implications of resigning officially from the church. I've just wanted to stop having it effect me entirely, and I thought that just changing my information so I could no longer be contacted was enough. However, I now see that knowing there's some ward somewhere random that is searching in vain for an address behind a burger joint actually means there's a name... MY name and a number... (What most members of the church are frequently reduced to--1 member of what must be the true church because it keeps growing) implying at least some small bit of support, camaraderie, and tacit approval of a church culture that literally kills people who are different via somehow making the majority of them feel worthless and like a potential option for them is to cut short this one brief spark of life they've been allotted.

I have listened to the pained words of the recent divorcée told she's doing it wrong by giving up on her husband, the man who cannot have children of his own who feels that something is wrong with him that God wouldn't keep his promise from his patriarchal blessing, the man who thought his inability to cope with the social anxiety that brought him home from his mission just one week in meant suicide was the answer, and the woman without an active husband who feels consistently held to a lower class status.
These are devastating experiences, all recounted by people I've known and loved so dearly for the majority of my life. The pain the church culture of rejecting different inflicts causes tears to fall down my face as I write this. It's also the story of nearly every LGBT Mormon I've met... including myself, many of you my great friends, and ample others that they at one time or another think suicide is a viable option. I cannot believe how many active members of the church have told me in private conversations that they know and recognize this monster, and yet it lives on. I know the world has lost countless men and women to this cultural oppression... all of whom deserved better.

I cannot even slightly imply any longer that I might be party to such a group.

Once and for all, this repressive organization will no longer have my membership to count, nor will it find my name among those supporting it in even a minuscule way.

I'm done.

Sunday, November 8, 2015

A Little Drama & A Little Apathy

I've been trying to pinpoint exactly what shook me about the Mormon church's recent policy change enough to break a rather long streak of staunch apathy, and I'm pretty sure it's just been a building tension I feel with my Mormon family being held in a stasis of half-truths and rigidity. I look at the magazines the church sends out, and it sure looks like my Momo fam is getting hit with a barrage of bad news about my eternal soul. It's annoying!

(Aside: I shouldn't be blathering right now, because I don't have a lot to say that really matters, but I just feel like writing.  So here I am.)

I feel like I was overly dramatic in my last post, but I think it's also indicative of how I feel like a truce was broken.  I think I'd felt like I had struck a silent agreement that would have me just leave the church quietly without trying to take them with me, and my family would quietly accept that I was gay and live with a boyfriend without a fuss.

The church keeps interfering with this silent ceasefire. They just keep running their PR machine to make me look like I'm monstrously tearing the family unit asunder like a dog who's found some freshly finished homework.  It's all malarky!

That's really all it is for me. I know there are people who are deeply impacted by these shenanigans. For me, it's just my family relationships being carefully manipulated and meddled with.

So please, Mormon church, stop messing with my family.

I still feel apathetic about the church on the whole, but any time they look to intervene and label me something so strong as an apostate, I have to at least turn my head a bit.  (And shake it at them... and then say, "No, thanks, k, bye.")

K, bye.

Saturday, November 7, 2015

It's All So Personal & I Feel Helpless

I have thoughts.

I can't share them openly without putting my personal relationships and livelihood at risk.

I cannot be 100% authentic without risking some staples of my life.

I hate that aspect of my current job; I can't even be political.

I hate the censorship I'm under.

It's fucking stupid.

As if my personal opinions would be viewed as the opinions of the whole of the government entity for which I work.

Anyway, I'm pissed off.

I feel like I have a determined warrior inside me that wants to be at the front line--cutting deep into the bigotry, the hypocrisy, and the manipulation at hand.

I want to put my love, my life, my passions in front of their faces and tell them they cannot beat me down.

The Mormon church decided they'd block membership for children of gay parents, and call living in a gay marriage apostasy.

Whatever... it doesn't effect me, right?

No. It does. It's an awkward twist of the knife. It's forcing my believing family into logical acrobatics that will surely further damage their ability to live authentically. For worse, most of them have likely decided to stick with this bigoted oppressive church to their death beds... and yet the church keeps pushing them further into extremes of insanity.

What of it if I get married to the man I love and adopt children with him? What of it, if I give children that don't have two healthy parents to care for them a loving family home?

What god that supposedly created me this way would really be upset if I established the same committed relationship unit that my parents and billions before them have created? Would such a god really be upset to the point of demanding I be dragged before my supposed superiors to be tried like a criminal? Having my personal life dredged through like it was some salacious sandbox they could play in?

I don't fucking believe in any god like that.

The Mormon church is, as a friend recently reminded me, essentially a policy group that serves primarily white heteronormative men.

They lead their "faithful" around on leashes. Carefully crafting their policies to make the oppressed look like the evil-doers that did it all to themselves. They further drive the different to believe they're not good enough. Different is evil. Different is your own fault. You can either force yourself to quench the different, or you can quench yourself.

They do charity work, yes. They also parade what charity work they do around to serve their own purposes.

What about just doing good to ALL, and for no ulterior purpose? What about doing what we all know is right, and leaving behind your outdated bigoted shit?

My family is in the midst of all this garbage. 

They're intelligent, caring, respectful people, but they're silenced, muffled, and muted into just blobs. They're reduced to robots being forced to work the factories of Mormondom... creating bullshit.

They hold out for a reward after this life... sacrificing their lives...

I'm pleading for their lives to be restored to them.

I'm shouting from my censored perch to their hearts... hoping... that they wake up the humanity within them. That they see their lives are being sucked dry of true living, compassion, passion, and love.

Thursday, October 2, 2014

It's Been A Year & I Love It

I came out to my family a year ago.

I was so thrilled with their response then, and never imagined it could be like it is now.

I have had the pleasure of introducing a man that I love to my family... over a delicious (read: passable (I had to make everything sound as rosy as possible, right?)) and entertaining, albeit sometimes a little awkward, Olive Garden dinner.

It's been amazing.

I love it all.

That is all.

Monday, June 2, 2014

Come What May & What May Come


I have a boyfriend...










That is what I just said.

In the past I lived with a life motto roughly around the idea of if I stay positive, things will be good. It pretty much seemed to work.  I was very positive, and I found positive things in my life to appreciate.

Come what may, and I'll just appreciate the good things as much as I can.  (Just pretend I didn't invoke memories of an Elder Wirthlin talk.)

It is really hard to find the good stuff when things kind of just generally suck in your life.  I guess what I'm here to say is, things can get way, way, way better.  If I can finally figure out how to get into a good relationship and how to find someone insane enough to be in a relationship with me--you can get past whatever constant struggles seem to be in your life.  When the shit has hit the fan, I guess you just really have to get out your binoculars and look into the future... consider the amazing things that may come.

This isn't a great post probably... but I'm just happy and felt like saying so...


Sunday, March 30, 2014

Sömebödy Just Learned How To Do Ümlauts & HOLY HELL!!!

So, I just discovered that Blogger will let me do all sorts of čräžÿ ãçćėñtš ń' śtüff if I just hold down the key for the letter that has those options.  GREAT?!  HUH?!

So, I was contemplating writing some great post about dating and how I'm really terrible at ever finding a boyfriend (and I never really had a girlfriend either), but wouldn't you all rather hear a crazy story about how I could have been killed if I didn't come out of the closet?!

Ok, so... I am a strong person that fought through a great deal of depression as I dealt with coming to terms with my sexuality and what that meant for my religious upbringing.  In the midst of that depression, I strongly considered committing suicide, but much to my present elation, that never happened.  After surviving the lowest low to which I ever plummeted, I really rebounded quite well, and part of that I think I owe to this blog.  It helped me get a lot of my feelings out that I just didn't have anyplace else to release.  And then there were awesome Mohos who started chiming in, giving me advice, and making me feel not so alone.  I got the courage to come out of the closet to myself, come out to my family and friends, and I started changing my life for the better as I gained a lot more self-confidence.  This lead me to changing jobs, and ultimately moving from the basement apartment where I lived when this blog began. Which leads me to the point of all of this... when this blog began, I wrote this post.  The most important excerpt from that post for right now is this:

For some stupid reason I can't get a thought out of my head that keeps creeping up, as if it were important.  Just to prove my brain wrong on that point, I'm going to expound it to you now... as I was laying on the floor/debris/shorts (florbrisorts), I was staring up at the terrible ceiling of this dark basement bedroom I'm holed up in.  It has a huge area that was clearly finished long after the rest of the ceiling... so it makes me wonder if at some point the floor caved in on a poor tenant of the past, that was laying on his florbrisorts.  See... there, dumb brain.  They agree with me.  It was a totally pointless anecdote, with no real purpose or entertainment value.  A tangent not worth exploring.
OH, HOW WRONG YOU WERE, GRAHAM!  How wrong you were.

I recently had a chat with the disagreeable roommate that continued to live there while the rest of were moving away. He informed me that that exact area of ceiling that was the subject of my seemingly pointless tangent just 8 and a half months ago collapsed!  Surely the odds of me being in the middle of that room at the moment it came crashing down are slim to nil, but it could have happened!  If I hadn't gotten out of the funk I was in and continued in the depression that was endemic to my previous two years of life, I might have just continued shutting myself in that dark basement room... only to be crushed by some plaster.  (What a way to go!)

Guys... I'M ALIVE!!!

And it's fücking great.

You made it through another post!  Here's a prize:

Saturday, March 29, 2014

I'm Wondering & Specialization of Labor

While some of you may have assumed my previous post meant I was done writing on this blog, that's obviously not true.  I just don't think I have much more to say that is groundbreaking for the Moho readership I have.  I suppose I could just resume the initial direction this blog was taking in a very tell-all-blunt-spewing-of-everything-in-my-brain type of style.  However, that only worked because I was 100% anonymous.  Now, quite a few people know who Graham really is.  And thus, whether I like it or not, to one degree or another I hold back on the complete ridiculous honesty with which this all began.

None of what I was just writing about is important, but I felt some explanation was necessary.

Today I'm here because it's my blog and I've got to write.  I think writing is to me what sex apparently was to Elaine on Seinfeld.*  If I don't do it, the bags just start piling up in my head. Evidently it doesn't really matter whether it's just me spewing my opinions on life here, or whether I write some love poem for the latest man causing me pining, warmth, or agony, or whether I write some stupid life advice that everyone can ignore on my Facebook page.  I just NEED to write.

So today, I'm here writing about how I'm wondering how connected humanity is.  Not just connected, but connected to the point that we opt to interact, reach out, intercede, withdraw, or communicate at a certain impactful time. These are the instances that make us think, "Wow, how did they know to do that at just that time?" I've had my own reasons for pondering this of late, but I was also reading this post from a fellow Moho blogger and it got me thinking all the more about this stuff.  There are so many names and conceptions for this facet of the human race (or for why we act in such ways) which has me pondering.  A few with which I'm quite familiar (meaning I have heard references to these throughout my life) include:

  • A mother's intuition.  
  • The Holy Spirit.  
  • Fate.  
  • Intuition. (Just in the character trait sense.)
  • Gut-feelings.

I know there are likely many, many others.†

The point is, that I don't know what I believe exactly about this, but I do feel that there is some level of ability for humans to have sudden, unreasoned intuitions about other humans with whom they are close, and to act in time to intercede with danger, harm, or maybe even good things. (However, I suppose my only experience with someone having a sort of intuition for knowing when to intercede negatively in my life was a roommate with an uncanny ability to get in the shower (at completely different times of day) just as I went to grab my towel.)  I tend to think that something about us has the ability to maintain some connection despite physical distance, time, and maybe even life.  (I mentioned once that I felt at one time in my life as though I was in some way interacting with my grandpa who had passed.) However, it doesn't present itself often, so I'm still pretty open to the idea that it's all just coincidence.  There are such limited experiences in any one person's life of feeling this concept that I think it's not at all improbable that coincidences happened each time.  On my mission, I largely only told three stories about how I'd gained a testimony of prayer.  Each of them involved an interaction with one other person. I can look at each and tell you exactly how completely absent any supposed communion with God, the exact same thing would have happened.  (Save one of them where the time I spent praying may have actually changed events if I hadn't used the time that way.) And I can look at each of them and point out the absolute triviality of the "blessing" that occurred. (They really weren't miracles.)  Honestly, I look at each story now, and I see coincidences.

Despite all of this talk, I had an experience recently that made me seriously ponder whether people can be intuitive to the point that they know just when to intercede.

Wow... I just realized I'm not going anywhere with this.  So, I am actually just writing for the sake of hearing myself write.

I will say this much... I think people who think enough about others and often enough, just stand a very good chance of getting their timing just right.  I think this explains my most recent experience.  Sometimes it's just that a person cares enough about the goings on in the life of the other person, that they get it just right.  To the point that we're stunned.  Even if there is nothing environmental or magical about this, it's still a pretty beautiful concept.  The idea that one of us cares enough for another of us to act in such ways is pretty powerful in and of itself. Add in impeccable timing, and it's something we really take note of--we even come up with varying theological, physiological, or mystical concepts to explain it.


I've also been thinking lately about specialization of labor.  Humanity's agreement that we would all start doing specific things.  WHY DID WE DO THIS?!  I can't seem to find my specialization that's going to contribute to the rest of you.  I'm too damn interested in doing too damn many things that I can't muster the energy to stick with any one damn thing!  I think I need to actually practice my writing, fix it up (a lot), and make it my living.  I mean... if I just HAVE to write to clear away the cobwebs... doesn't that mean it's something I'm pretty passionate about?  Somebody just use your intuition and call me right now to offer me an incredible full-time position where I just get to write about whatever shit is in my brain.... right........ NOW!

(It didn't happen. None of you care enough about me.)

*"To a woman, sex is like the garbage man. You just take for granted the fact that any time you put some trash out on the street, a guy in a jumpsuit's gonna come along and pick it up. But now, it's like a garbage strike. The bags are piling up in your head. The sidewalk is blocked. Nothing's getting through. You're stupid."
- Jerry, to Elaine, in "The Abstinence"

 In fact, my research into some concepts that I thought might be similar were fruitless, but I'm sure there are more out there.  For instance, qi (we pronounce it "chee"), traditionally from Chinese culture, has more to do with your life energy interacting with the environment and what you take into your body. Also, karma is more about acts themselves (of all varieties, not just well-timed intercessory actions) rather than the reasoning behind them.

Saturday, February 8, 2014

Necessary Sharing & Shifts of Focus

"...the momentary masters of a fraction of a dot."

Yeah, this was an absolutely necessary thing for me to share with someone!  For some reason I ended up here.  Hopefully this isn't a sad thing for you to watch, and hopefully you feel, as I do, it's a great reminder to just cherish the life you have and help others to enjoy their life, too.  Be nice to your fellow dot-sharers!

I mentioned that I don't know why I ended up sharing this here, and I don't know that I'll be likely to blog too much more often on this blog.  Why?

  1. I don't have depression about my gayness at all anymore.
  2. I don't really seek out advice on reconciling my Mormonness and Gayness anymore, and I doubt I have any helpful general advice or stories that you can empathize with that I haven't already shared.
  3. Because I am very happy in my present state, my focus has largely shifted to dating (which is a very personal matter) and my career (which you likely don't give a shit about.)  
  4. Basically, this blog isn't serving much of a purpose for me anymore.  While I could continue to come here once a month and tell you how incredibly happy I am now that I'm out of the closet, done with the church, and dating men... I think you've probably gathered that from just one or a few of my posts.  I'm great!  
If you have any questions whatsoever for me about anything, and I mean ANYthing... please write to me at graham cracker lawrence at gmail dot com.  I will happily answer questions and do my utmost to help you on your fun adventure on this pale blue dot.

Bye!  (At least for now.)

Sunday, February 2, 2014

Risks & Time

I take risks more now than I ever have before in my life.  In a risky maneuver a couple years back, I left a career path that could have assured me decent employment, and the fact that I left it may end up having negative ramifications for a long time to come. I came out of the closet and left the church that has provided my world view and foundation for living behind.

I came out to almost everyone I know on Facebook.

I feel like I'm constantly telling everyone about how different I am now than I was a few years ago.  So much has changed for so much the better that it's almost unconscionable to me that I could have been living so blind to the happiness that was out there for me.  I can't believe I was so stupid that I didn't start taking risks sooner.  I was so judgmental about risk, too.  Other people that were willing to take risks seemed like the dumb ones... how wrong I was!

  • Friends are going snowboarding: Why would I risk injury like that?  You all come back so injured! Plus, what about the money!
  • The natural compulsion I've always had to travel the world stifled by doubts about the risks involved leads me to judge free spirits that roam the globe: I better save my money.  You're not going to have money when you need it because you're always spending so much on travel.
  • Subconsciously... love: It's too risky to commit.  I could get hurt.  There could be a painful rejection or breakup.  Even worse... what if I commit completely and then screw it up? What if my committed marriage or long term relationship ends up as sub-par as my parents'?
  • Leaving the church: Well, you're an idiot if you leave the church.  You're going to have instant gratifications, sure, but what are you going to do with that crappy estate in heaven?
  • Coming out of the closet: What if you lose your family?  What if all your friends hate you?  What if you get hate crimed?
Take some fucking risks, Graham... and you, dear reader.  Take some risks.  I may look like a fool... but believe me if it's being foolish living truly happily, then I'll gladly take my dunce cap and enjoy this warmth that has filled my life.  

Risks have led me to become a man that is truly happy and pretty well sorted.  That said, I still have never had a real relationship, but I've never felt more ready for one.  Can't wait.  

It feels like I've been dating men for a long long time--it has only been 3 months.  I've realized that time is moving very slowly for me of late.  That is AWESOME.  I wondered if that's because my perspective has changed from an eternal to an earthly one.  If this is a tiny test, a blip in the eternities, it doesn't matter much and flies by too quickly.  But if this earthly life is all the life I'm given to live out my passion, my love, my thoughts, my feelings... every second is all the more important.  I used to just hope to die while being worthy of a temple recommend.  Now I hope to die having really lived.  Having experienced all that my soul desires.  

So, when I exasperate, "Ugh, I've been dating for so long and I still can't find him!"  The real truth is that I haven't been dating for so long.  I'm just very conscious of each day I'm given.  And even the unsuccessful dating I've done has been very worth the while.  Some great guys and experiences have come from it!  

I used to be someone that literally did nothing but eat, sleep, and surf the Internet for entire days, and even days on end!  Now I've embraced life to the point that I struggle to find free time for things. I'm busy, and I'm happy.  It's good stuff.