We spend a great deal of time and energy trying to get other people to fit a mold that we have in our minds.  There is a benefit to conformity--for example, we all conform (more or less) to the rules of the English language in the interest of being able to communicate with each other.  We also (more or less) conform to the laws of our country/state/etc in the interest of avoiding anarchy.  So, there certainly is something to be said for adopting certain societal dictates.  However, I feel that all too often this goes too far into things that ought not to be forced conformities.

I have heard so many stories of gay people who have been pressured into living a straight life--or into attempting to become straight--and it truly saddens my heart.  I sincerely believe that justice will one day be served and all of those who advocate or have ever advocated ex-gay therapy will pay for their sins.  I have seen so many hearts broken, so much self-loathing, and so much suicide because gay people are continually told that they should not be gay but should become straight.  My own fianc√© was subjected to ex-gay therapy from his LDS Family Services therapist.  The things that these poor people are told will help make them straight are absolutely ridiculous.  Conrad was told that watching Smallville was part of what was "keeping" him gay, so he was instructed to get rid of all of the Smallville DVDs that he had purchased.  Obviously, doing so did not make him straight.

Honestly, how many more lives do we need to ruin before we finally understand this issue?  How many people will be asked to avoid eating chocolate or shopping at their favorite store before we finally just let people be who they are?  Do we all need to have the same likes and dislikes?  Would the world be more interesting if everyone was exactly the same?

I'm downright infuriated that our society tolerates such horrible, traumatic organizations to exist.  If I wanted to start a clinic teaching Africans that they should not have black skin and if they avoid eating chocolate their whole lives and pray hard enough God will fix their skin color, what would happen to me?  I would probably be sent to prison for discrimination.  So, why do we tolerate such ridiculous things concerning homosexuality?  These kinds of organizations should be shut down--for emotional torture.  It has been proven beyond any reasonable doubt that ex-gay therapy causes psychological damage.  Why are we still practicing such primitive, destructive things?  God cannot rejoice in such psychological and emotional damage.  He cannot possibly be pleased when he sees us do such terrible things to each other.

I no longer give to society, nor any organization, nor any individual, power over me to tell me who I should be, what I should say, what I should think, and how I should express myself.  I am gay and I am happy being gay.  I have no desire nor any need to be anything aside from gay.  And I present this message to any other gay people out there--especially those who are constantly being told that they should be straight.  Be yourself.  Love yourself.  Even if your family and your church can't love you, love yourself.  You are a beautiful person, just the way you are.  You were not meant to be anything else--you were meant to be you.  You are not your parents, nor are you your church leaders, so you cannot live their life for them, nor let them live your life for you.

I firmly believe that everyone has the right to be with someone that they truly love and who truly loves them.  Asking a gay person to enter a heterosexual marriage is not fair to either partner, since the love will be one-sided (except, I suppose, in the really strange instances when the advocacy is for a gay man to marry a lesbian woman, in which case there is no love).