dan-pearceCan I just ask something?

Where are all the Mormons that promised to hate me?

From the age of eleven until I finally accepted myself (publicly) last December as something other than straight, I was promised to be hated by all the Mormons in my life should I ever actually be anything other than straight.

At least  I think I was.

I mean, it was that fear of being hated that caused me so much anguish over the years. It was that fear of being hated that caused me to hate myself for so long. It was that fear of being hated that tainted and destroyed so many parts of me. It was that fear of being hated that kept me silent, even to myself. It was that fear of being hated that made me want to end my own life.

At least I think it was.

I fully expected to be hated by so many people when I accepted myself. And everyone I feared would hate me (that I actually knew in real life) was, coincidentally or not, a Mormon.

I live in Utah. Almost my entire family is Mormon. So many of my friends are Mormon. My neighbors are mostly Mormon. That’s just Utah for you.

And it’s no secret that the Mormon church is adamantly against homosexuality. They have pumped millions of dollars into protecting what they consider to be the proper and correct family structure, fighting legislation that would grant equal rights to “other” types of families.

And having once been a Mormon myself, I can tell you that anti-gay doctrine was preached to me my whole life. We’ve already talked about that. It was thrown in my face around every corner I turned. There was fear surrounding it. There was anger. There was never-ending strong words being flung in all directions.

At least I think there was.

But what I feared would happen and what actually happened were as different as pepper and sugar.

I mean, not a single Mormon has been anything but loving and supportive to me. At least to my face. Not a single Mormon has attacked me or criticized me or preached hellfire and damnation to me. At least not to my face.

Extremely angry man

Where are all the Mormons that promised to hate me?

And it’s not like they’ve all just tolerated my existence since then. They have lovingly embraced me into their lives, even more so than before. They’ve accepted me. All of them. My friends. My family. My neighbors. My community. At least to my face.

The closest thing I had to a problem was an intense two hour talk with my mom. But even then we hugged at the end, and have just loved each other ever since, and more than before.

And all that makes me wonder…

How much of it has been in my head over the years? How much of it was implanted by hearing stories of other people surrounded by other Mormons? How much of it was implanted in my mind from a much less accepting time and a much less tolerant part of my life, when things hadn’t progressed the way they apparently have today?

CONTINUED ON NEXT PAGE.

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Dan Pearce is an American-born author, app developer, photographer, and artist. This blog, Single Dad Laughing, is what he's most known for, with more than 1.4 million daily subscribers as of 2017. Pearce writes mostly humorous and introspective works, as well as his musings which span from fatherhood, to dating, to life, to the people and dynamics of society. Single Dad Laughing is much more than a blog. It's an incredible community of people just being real and awesome together!