And thus you see why, when I was confused about my sexuality, it was almost impossible for me to question it so that I could actually know that I was straight. And it didn’t ever become possible to question it until I was able to dismiss everything I’d been taught about since I was a child.
I truly believe that such contradictory teachings in many religions are what force people into unhappy relationships and lives, particularly mixed-orientation marriages. I also believe it is what keeps so many of them trapped there, living out their miserable existences as best they can.
But Josh Weed and his wife are happy!
I’ll get to them in a moment. They’re on the small side of the numbers. But right now, let’s talk about the reality of the majority.
Let’s talk about the tens of thousands of couples who are married or have been married where one member of the union is gay and the other isn’t, all in the name of keeping good graces with their religion and their God.
And how dejected a situation it is for nearly all of them.
I have several gay friends who used to be married.
I have friends who used to be married to gay spouses.
And never once have I seen any of them be able to attain what Josh and Lolly Weed say they have together.
But they most certainly did try. Every one of them. Because they had to. If they wanted to be right with God and the people around them, they had to really try no matter how tough their situations seemed.
Some of these people ended up married in the first place because they really believed when they were told that they could control it and that it was a choice. Some of them ended up married because the pressure around them wouldn’t let them admit they were gay, even to themselves. Some of them ended up married because they knew that they would have no place in their families and communities if they let themselves be gay. Marrying and having children was the only way.
And, without fail, the byproduct was relationship ruin. Because, as any gay person will tell you, when you’re truly gay, you can’t just turn it off and make yourself be sexually attracted to someone of the opposite sex. You can’t just “decide” to be straight any more than I was able to “decide” to be gay. There’s no religious gay boot camp that can force the gay out of you. There’s no shock therapy that can do it either. And when you literally can’t be sexually attracted to your spouse, it creates an environment where both members of the marriage begin to resent each other, feel inadequate, unattractive, and unworthy.
I have many friends who have been through this. And I’ve been through it myself. Twice. Not because I was gay, but because I wasn’t sexually attracted to the person I was married to. And I can tell you that “trying hard enough” was not the problem for me or for anyone else who has gone through it. If anything, trying so hard just made things worse.
The real problem was the surrounding pressure that wouldn’t let any of us honestly look at our sexuality, be honest with our spouses about our sexual feelings, or be honest with others for fear of complete rejection, humiliation, and condemnation.
Such pressures aren’t fair to either member of a relationship, and it will almost always end in the expiry of the relationship, no matter how much counseling is had, how much prayer is given, how much dedication exists, and how much understanding there is. For the vast majority of human beings, sexual attraction to a lifelong mate is a necessary part of happiness, and true happiness literally can’t exist in a platonic life relationship without it.
Which, I suppose, is where my big irk comes in with Weed’s blog post.