Episode 68: Zilpha’s Conversation with Nate: Coming Out and Coming to Terms

Zilpha interviews high school friend Nate Koch about being gay and serving a mission. After being sent home, he decides to come out of the closet and leave the church.

Episode 68

68 comments on “Episode 68: Zilpha’s Conversation with Nate: Coming Out and Coming to Terms”

  1. Swearing Elder Reply

    This was an amazing interview, Zilpha. Nice work!

    Many thanks to Nate for sharing his story. Some of the things you went through are just astonishing — both the things you did to try and make Mormonism work for you, trying to adjust your sexuality, and then how you were treated after your mission and on your way out of the church.

    Nate didn’t seem to regret his experience with a male escort in New Zealand as it seemed to be a major catalyst for him. However, it seems unfortunate (from this outsider’s perspective and I’ll gladly be corrected on this) that he wasn’t able to progress through stages of sexuality with partners — holding hands, hugging, kissing, and so on — but reached a point where he had to go all out. (Don’t take this as a judgment — that’s not what I’m saying at all.) I wonder if this part of his life would have developed differently had his mission president just let him go home.

    This interview really reveals so much about the church and its (in)ability to deal with anyone who doesn’t fit a narrow, prescribed Mormon Model.

    • Nate Reply

      I totally agree with you. You are right that I don’t regret the way things turned out in New Zealand, it was profound and unexpectedly beautiful, but you are also right that it would have been better had I been able to experience the “standard” progression of a relationship, with someone that I actually knew and loved. This is why the gay marriage issue is so important. For me, that battle is not so much about legal rights as it is about having a society that nutures and reinforces healthy relationships, rather than pushing gays into such desparate situations.

  2. Swearing Elder Reply

    This was an amazing interview, Zilpha. Nice work!

    Many thanks to Nate for sharing his story. Some of the things you went through are just astonishing — both the things you did to try and make Mormonism work for you, trying to adjust your sexuality, and then how you were treated after your mission and on your way out of the church.

    Nate didn’t seem to regret his experience with a male escort in New Zealand as it seemed to be a major catalyst for him. However, it seems unfortunate (from this outsider’s perspective and I’ll gladly be corrected on this) that he wasn’t able to progress through stages of sexuality with partners — holding hands, hugging, kissing, and so on — but reached a point where he had to go all out. (Don’t take this as a judgment — that’s not what I’m saying at all.) I wonder if this part of his life would have developed differently had his mission president just let him go home.

    This interview really reveals so much about the church and its (in)ability to deal with anyone who doesn’t fit a narrow, prescribed Mormon Model.

    • Nate Reply

      I totally agree with you. You are right that I don’t regret the way things turned out in New Zealand, it was profound and unexpectedly beautiful, but you are also right that it would have been better had I been able to experience the “standard” progression of a relationship, with someone that I actually knew and loved. This is why the gay marriage issue is so important. For me, that battle is not so much about legal rights as it is about having a society that nutures and reinforces healthy relationships, rather than pushing gays into such desparate situations.

  3. Campeche Reply

    Zilpha and Nate,
    I’m halfway through the interview and I want to thank you sooo much for this.

    Nate, you seem to have reached your goal of having Christ-like unconditional love for others because you speak kindly and compassionately, even of the people who condemn homosexuality. I can see why Zilpha fell in love with you : )
    Even though your first sexual experience was with a prostitute, it sounds like a tender experience…

    I only wish you could have included some of your piano music in the podcast….

  4. Campeche Reply

    Zilpha and Nate,
    I’m halfway through the interview and I want to thank you sooo much for this.

    Nate, you seem to have reached your goal of having Christ-like unconditional love for others because you speak kindly and compassionately, even of the people who condemn homosexuality. I can see why Zilpha fell in love with you : )
    Even though your first sexual experience was with a prostitute, it sounds like a tender experience…

    I only wish you could have included some of your piano music in the podcast….

  5. jax Reply

    I was really touched by the level of friendship apparent between the two of you. Solid hit, this one. Excellent job Zilpha. You should have the mic a bit more often.

    Nate, you are exaclty the type of person that makes everything I believed in for most of my adult life false. Five years ago, my true believing heart would have become stony with indignation. I listened to you describe your struggles and your efforts to “be right” with your former faith, and I am left thinking “what more proof is there that we do not choose who we love?” I hope you know that learning from people like you helps me to increase my humanity.

    Thanks for sharing your story. You sound happy; I hope you get everything you want out of life, Nate.

  6. jax Reply

    I was really touched by the level of friendship apparent between the two of you. Solid hit, this one. Excellent job Zilpha. You should have the mic a bit more often.

    Nate, you are exaclty the type of person that makes everything I believed in for most of my adult life false. Five years ago, my true believing heart would have become stony with indignation. I listened to you describe your struggles and your efforts to “be right” with your former faith, and I am left thinking “what more proof is there that we do not choose who we love?” I hope you know that learning from people like you helps me to increase my humanity.

    Thanks for sharing your story. You sound happy; I hope you get everything you want out of life, Nate.

  7. Gardner Reply

    Great interview. Thank you so much Nate for your candid and open retelling of your amazing journey.

  8. Gardner Reply

    Great interview. Thank you so much Nate for your candid and open retelling of your amazing journey.

  9. Gwennaëlle Reply

    Wine does not taste good?
    Ok guys I am a good little mormon woman but I am also FRENCH.
    You would not dare to come in my face and tell me that wine does not taste good.
    Geez…
    You are just Americans, this is what you are.

    Ok beside this I am really enjoying this podcast (I am almost through).

  10. Gwennaëlle Reply

    Wine does not taste good?
    Ok guys I am a good little mormon woman but I am also FRENCH.
    You would not dare to come in my face and tell me that wine does not taste good.
    Geez…
    You are just Americans, this is what you are.

    Ok beside this I am really enjoying this podcast (I am almost through).

  11. Gwennaëlle Reply

    Hold on a second…I am LDS, going to church. I have two callings and a half and I am ok with homosexuality.

    Okkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkk

    I am a weirdo anyway but I know I am not the only one.

    Great podcast. I really enjoyed it. I hope you got the fact that I was kidding in my first post. I can’t let anyone saying that wine does not taste good even if I don’t drink of it. It is a patriotic thing.

    • Glenn Reply

      I could tell you were kidding — it was very funny. Now I am going to go finish eating my freedom fries. 🙂

  12. Gwennaëlle Reply

    Hold on a second…I am LDS, going to church. I have two callings and a half and I am ok with homosexuality.

    Okkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkk

    I am a weirdo anyway but I know I am not the only one.

    Great podcast. I really enjoyed it. I hope you got the fact that I was kidding in my first post. I can’t let anyone saying that wine does not taste good even if I don’t drink of it. It is a patriotic thing.

    • Glenn Reply

      I could tell you were kidding — it was very funny. Now I am going to go finish eating my freedom fries. 🙂

  13. Devin Reply

    Wow, what a fabulous podcast. It certainly brought up a lot of emotions for me. I remember how difficult it was to try and be what the church wanted me to be. Oh my goodness, the struggle was so much.

    What a marvelous discovery to find out being gay isn’t about sex. I can so relate with Nate and the idea of cuddling and being held. I wish that my family could see and understand that it isn’t about the physical side of things – but rather the emotional connection that you feel towards someone your are supposed to be with.

    Thank you for sharing. Thank you for your laugh and ability to look back and smile.

  14. Devin Reply

    Wow, what a fabulous podcast. It certainly brought up a lot of emotions for me. I remember how difficult it was to try and be what the church wanted me to be. Oh my goodness, the struggle was so much.

    What a marvelous discovery to find out being gay isn’t about sex. I can so relate with Nate and the idea of cuddling and being held. I wish that my family could see and understand that it isn’t about the physical side of things – but rather the emotional connection that you feel towards someone your are supposed to be with.

    Thank you for sharing. Thank you for your laugh and ability to look back and smile.

  15. Tom Perry Reply

    Nate & Zilpha, you guys were awesome. What a great discussion. So many great lines…
    “6 months!! Talk about going in with a loaded gun!”
    “John isn’t really my type. But I’m sure he is a nice guy.”

    Nate, I highly commend you for being willing to share your story. My heart broke hearing the struggles you have had to endure. And I agree with Zilpha, you do sound like you would make a great dad. Hopefully someday.

    I do hope you continue to find ways to continue to enjoy and love life to the fullest. Thanks again!

  16. Tom Perry Reply

    Nate & Zilpha, you guys were awesome. What a great discussion. So many great lines…
    “6 months!! Talk about going in with a loaded gun!”
    “John isn’t really my type. But I’m sure he is a nice guy.”

    Nate, I highly commend you for being willing to share your story. My heart broke hearing the struggles you have had to endure. And I agree with Zilpha, you do sound like you would make a great dad. Hopefully someday.

    I do hope you continue to find ways to continue to enjoy and love life to the fullest. Thanks again!

  17. Zilpha Reply

    Nate was so open and articulated the struggles he went through so well. John said it sounds in the interview like I had a crush on Nate or was in love with him. I never really had those kinds of feelings for him even though I thought he was handsome and thought he was TOTALLY wonderful. I just thought that since I loved him so much and we got along so well…..and since he was a guy and I was a girl……you know, maybe we should get together. So when I told him I loved him it was true. But my heart wasn’t broken when he told me he couldn’t love me in THAT way. I just had a hard time understanding it.

    For those of you who would like to hear a bit of Nate’s piano playing, you can go to youtube and search for “Nate Koch piano”. His specialty seems to be classical pieces that are somewhat obscure and very difficult. 🙂

    • Gunnar R. Reply

      What an awesome, moving interview, Zilpha, and kudos to Nat as well. I can’t imagine that anyone else would have been better suited to doing this interview or could have done a better job of it! I also like the way Nate sort of interviewed you in return, near the end, resulting in a fuller appreciation of your own sweet personality and character. You and John are so lucky to have each other!

      I wonder how anyone could possibly listen to interviews like this one (and that with Ellie and D.J.) and still not realize how wrong-headed, unhealthy, bigoted and even cruel the official LDS stance and paranoia towards human sexuality in general and homosexuality in particular really is.

      With regard to your comments about the WoW, I feel very much the same way you do, especially concerning alcoholic beverages. Like you, I find the taste quite unpleasant. I have had a taste each of beer, whisky, vodka and wine, and have absolutely desire to repeat the experience. The wine I tasted once was supposedly of a very fine and highly regarded vintage, and my reaction to it was that I would just as soon drink straight vinegar. Ugh! I realize, of course, that like most tastes, a taste for fine wine is an acquired taste, but why go to the trouble of acquiring a taste for something you don’t initially like, is quite expensive, and can so easily lead to serious health, moral and legal problems and a very real danger of addiction if overindulged in?

      • Gunnar R. Reply

        Correction, I accidently left out the word “no” between “absolutely” and “desire” in the fourth line of the last paragragh above.

    • Zilpha Reply

      Oh all right, I really was in love with him. But what I’m trying to express in the above posting is that I could never let my romantic feelings get TOO strong because I always sensed that he didn’t feel the same way back. Does that make sense?

  18. Zilpha Reply

    Nate was so open and articulated the struggles he went through so well. John said it sounds in the interview like I had a crush on Nate or was in love with him. I never really had those kinds of feelings for him even though I thought he was handsome and thought he was TOTALLY wonderful. I just thought that since I loved him so much and we got along so well…..and since he was a guy and I was a girl……you know, maybe we should get together. So when I told him I loved him it was true. But my heart wasn’t broken when he told me he couldn’t love me in THAT way. I just had a hard time understanding it.

    For those of you who would like to hear a bit of Nate’s piano playing, you can go to youtube and search for “Nate Koch piano”. His specialty seems to be classical pieces that are somewhat obscure and very difficult. 🙂

    • Gunnar R. Reply

      What an awesome, moving interview, Zilpha, and kudos to Nat as well. I can’t imagine that anyone else would have been better suited to doing this interview or could have done a better job of it! I also like the way Nate sort of interviewed you in return, near the end, resulting in a fuller appreciation of your own sweet personality and character. You and John are so lucky to have each other!

      I wonder how anyone could possibly listen to interviews like this one (and that with Ellie and D.J.) and still not realize how wrong-headed, unhealthy, bigoted and even cruel the official LDS stance and paranoia towards human sexuality in general and homosexuality in particular really is.

      With regard to your comments about the WoW, I feel very much the same way you do, especially concerning alcoholic beverages. Like you, I find the taste quite unpleasant. I have had a taste each of beer, whisky, vodka and wine, and have absolutely desire to repeat the experience. The wine I tasted once was supposedly of a very fine and highly regarded vintage, and my reaction to it was that I would just as soon drink straight vinegar. Ugh! I realize, of course, that like most tastes, a taste for fine wine is an acquired taste, but why go to the trouble of acquiring a taste for something you don’t initially like, is quite expensive, and can so easily lead to serious health, moral and legal problems and a very real danger of addiction if overindulged in?

      • Gunnar R. Reply

        Correction, I accidently left out the word “no” between “absolutely” and “desire” in the fourth line of the last paragragh above.

    • Zilpha Reply

      Oh all right, I really was in love with him. But what I’m trying to express in the above posting is that I could never let my romantic feelings get TOO strong because I always sensed that he didn’t feel the same way back. Does that make sense?

  19. jax Reply
  20. jax Reply
  21. Glenn Reply

    THAT WAS AWESOME!!!! You can’t fake that kind of love and honesty. I was so moved by the stories being told — not only Nate’s story of his struggle with self-hatred and the peace and comfort he found in the last place he was “supposed to” find it, but also Zilpha’s story of the young girl in love with this great handsome talented guy who just could not be what she wanted him to be (although I see you have said you didn’t love him “that way” — I’m going to choose to ignore that, cuz I like my version better — plus, how many other friends did you fantasize sacrificing yourself for? Actually… never mind).

    The thing is, the love you both have for each other came across as very real and palpable — not a romantic love, but a true love nevertheless. The whole thing was just so beautiful. I am amazed. The personal details you were each so willing to share… I am just blown away. Very well done.

    A question for Nate — I had this ridiculous thought as I was listening to you talk about the way you were not allowed to play the piano when you were disfellowshipped — this thought that “look at what the church is missing out on.” I call it ridiculous because it lead to the next question: “well, what would the church have to look like in order to be a comfortable and satisfying experience for an openly practicing homosexual person to commune with (both what you are contributing to the church and what it is doing for you in return)” and I just can’t imagine the chruch ever getting there, but I will ask it anyway:

    Nate, what would the church have to look like in order to be a comfortable and satisfying experience for you to want to stay in and commune with?

    You are both terrific — thank you for this interview! There are so many people who I want to share this with, because this is an issue that needs a lot more attention.

    • Nate Reply

      There is no way that I could go back to the church now. It’s more than just being gay. Like I mentioned in the podcast, I can’t believe that dark skin comes from a curse, so that disqualifies the Book of Mormon. And I could never again believe that priesthood leaders know more about my standing with God than I do, which disqualifies the whole hierarchical structure of the church. And if they changed either of those things, it would no longer be the Mormon Church.

      But I think you might really be asking how tolerant of homosexuality the Mormon Church would have to become in order to feel like a safe place for gay people. The answer is pretty simple. The only way that could work is if they treated gay and straight relationships perfectly equally.

  22. Glenn Reply

    THAT WAS AWESOME!!!! You can’t fake that kind of love and honesty. I was so moved by the stories being told — not only Nate’s story of his struggle with self-hatred and the peace and comfort he found in the last place he was “supposed to” find it, but also Zilpha’s story of the young girl in love with this great handsome talented guy who just could not be what she wanted him to be (although I see you have said you didn’t love him “that way” — I’m going to choose to ignore that, cuz I like my version better — plus, how many other friends did you fantasize sacrificing yourself for? Actually… never mind).

    The thing is, the love you both have for each other came across as very real and palpable — not a romantic love, but a true love nevertheless. The whole thing was just so beautiful. I am amazed. The personal details you were each so willing to share… I am just blown away. Very well done.

    A question for Nate — I had this ridiculous thought as I was listening to you talk about the way you were not allowed to play the piano when you were disfellowshipped — this thought that “look at what the church is missing out on.” I call it ridiculous because it lead to the next question: “well, what would the church have to look like in order to be a comfortable and satisfying experience for an openly practicing homosexual person to commune with (both what you are contributing to the church and what it is doing for you in return)” and I just can’t imagine the chruch ever getting there, but I will ask it anyway:

    Nate, what would the church have to look like in order to be a comfortable and satisfying experience for you to want to stay in and commune with?

    You are both terrific — thank you for this interview! There are so many people who I want to share this with, because this is an issue that needs a lot more attention.

    • Nate Reply

      There is no way that I could go back to the church now. It’s more than just being gay. Like I mentioned in the podcast, I can’t believe that dark skin comes from a curse, so that disqualifies the Book of Mormon. And I could never again believe that priesthood leaders know more about my standing with God than I do, which disqualifies the whole hierarchical structure of the church. And if they changed either of those things, it would no longer be the Mormon Church.

      But I think you might really be asking how tolerant of homosexuality the Mormon Church would have to become in order to feel like a safe place for gay people. The answer is pretty simple. The only way that could work is if they treated gay and straight relationships perfectly equally.

  23. Nate Reply

    I am so happy that you all got something out of the podcast! Thanks for the encouraging words! And thanks to Zilpha for letting me tell my story. It feels good to know that my story is helping people understand the issues that gay Mormons face.

    • NightAvatar Reply

      After listening to this I’m in love with Nate and I didn’t even know I was gay. What a terrific, good person. I wish I could know him for real.

      Zilpha, if you ever want to show me your breasts and offer yourself for my eternal salvation I’m totally on board. Well, maybe not but just imagining it is pretty awesome.

      • Zilpha Reply

        I’ve never offered access to my body for anyone’s eternal salvation (except maybe John’s), I’ve just thought about it a few times. 🙂

    • Gunnar R. Reply

      It is a crying shame that the top leaders of the LDS heirarchy can’t or won’t understand those issues–at least not so far. I suspect (or at least hope) that future generations of LDS leaders will come to understand how intrinsically irrational and harmful the current LDS stance on the homosexuality really is. I simply cannot bring myself to believe that such a hurtful and ignorant stance can be inspired by a just, loving and omniscient God.

    • Jay Reply

      Nate. I’m really glad you did the podcast. It was a great listen and it really makes me wonder who, if anyone I know who is struggling with this, and I hope that I can respond to them in a good way if/when that ever comes up.

  24. Nate Reply

    I am so happy that you all got something out of the podcast! Thanks for the encouraging words! And thanks to Zilpha for letting me tell my story. It feels good to know that my story is helping people understand the issues that gay Mormons face.

    • NightAvatar Reply

      After listening to this I’m in love with Nate and I didn’t even know I was gay. What a terrific, good person. I wish I could know him for real.

      Zilpha, if you ever want to show me your breasts and offer yourself for my eternal salvation I’m totally on board. Well, maybe not but just imagining it is pretty awesome.

      • Zilpha Reply

        I’ve never offered access to my body for anyone’s eternal salvation (except maybe John’s), I’ve just thought about it a few times. 🙂

    • Gunnar R. Reply

      It is a crying shame that the top leaders of the LDS heirarchy can’t or won’t understand those issues–at least not so far. I suspect (or at least hope) that future generations of LDS leaders will come to understand how intrinsically irrational and harmful the current LDS stance on the homosexuality really is. I simply cannot bring myself to believe that such a hurtful and ignorant stance can be inspired by a just, loving and omniscient God.

  25. Gunnar R. Reply

    As harsh and unsympathetic as the official LDS stand towards homosexuals is, even that seems benevolent compared to its stand on trans-gender individuals who have undergone sex-reassignment surgery, like Kimberly (formerly a high school star quarterback named Paul), who told her story on Oprah Winfrey today. It was a very touching story of how she finally found peace with herself and feels whole after having taken that step after an agonizing lifetime of trying to suppress feelings of being a female trapped in a male’s body. As I understand it, the church will not even begin to consider such individuals eligible for baptism or allowing them to retain their membership upon finding out, after they have been baptised, that they underwent such a transition. Apparently there is more than one thing the Church regards as unforgivable.

  26. Gunnar R. Reply

    As harsh and unsympathetic as the official LDS stand towards homosexuals is, even that seems benevolent compared to its stand on trans-gender individuals who have undergone sex-reassignment surgery, like Kimberly (formerly a high school star quarterback named Paul), who told her story on Oprah Winfrey today. It was a very touching story of how she finally found peace with herself and feels whole after having taken that step after an agonizing lifetime of trying to suppress feelings of being a female trapped in a male’s body. As I understand it, the church will not even begin to consider such individuals eligible for baptism or allowing them to retain their membership upon finding out, after they have been baptised, that they underwent such a transition. Apparently there is more than one thing the Church regards as unforgivable.

  27. Sionpiensa Reply

    Thanks for the Podcast, it was a great interview.

    Recently I watched the documentary “8: The Mormon Proposition.”
    In the documentary it is explained the electro shocks treatment for homosexuality at BYU and Nate references it in his interview. Is it real? was the Church involved in torture?.
    If anyone knows more, let me know.

  28. Sionpiensa Reply

    Thanks for the Podcast, it was a great interview.

    Recently I watched the documentary “8: The Mormon Proposition.”
    In the documentary it is explained the electro shocks treatment for homosexuality at BYU and Nate references it in his interview. Is it real? was the Church involved in torture?.
    If anyone knows more, let me know.

  29. Gail F. Bartholomew Reply

    Thank you Nate and Zilpha. Unfortunately this may be a story that we do not hear often, but it is one all to common in the Church. Three times more gay men in the church commit suicide then straight men. The church is a completely unhealthy place for anyone gay. This goes far beyond the Church’s stand of gay sex. The church may say that there is no sin in the feelings of homosexuality, but the church treats homosexuals to the contrary. The church asks gay members to only share their orientation with only their bishop and a close family member as if the orientation it’s self was a serious sin. Elder Oaks asks us to only say people experience same sex attraction and not say they are gay or homosexual. This reduces homosexuality to a pathology, and refuses it equivalent status with heterosexuality. The Church does little or nothing to stop the homophobic remarks I have heard in every unit of the church I have attended, yet the church has no problem with mobilizing the members to give millions to take the rights of gay Californians away. Thus illustrating how much they really care, regardless of the smooth compassionate sound bites coming from a few talks from Elder Holland or Scott.

  30. Gail F. Bartholomew Reply

    Thank you Nate and Zilpha. Unfortunately this may be a story that we do not hear often, but it is one all to common in the Church. Three times more gay men in the church commit suicide then straight men. The church is a completely unhealthy place for anyone gay. This goes far beyond the Church’s stand of gay sex. The church may say that there is no sin in the feelings of homosexuality, but the church treats homosexuals to the contrary. The church asks gay members to only share their orientation with only their bishop and a close family member as if the orientation it’s self was a serious sin. Elder Oaks asks us to only say people experience same sex attraction and not say they are gay or homosexual. This reduces homosexuality to a pathology, and refuses it equivalent status with heterosexuality. The Church does little or nothing to stop the homophobic remarks I have heard in every unit of the church I have attended, yet the church has no problem with mobilizing the members to give millions to take the rights of gay Californians away. Thus illustrating how much they really care, regardless of the smooth compassionate sound bites coming from a few talks from Elder Holland or Scott.

  31. James Reply

    Nate and Zilpha, what a great podcast. Thanks for sharing your story, Nate, and Zilpha – I love your style and the ease of your conversation making the episode less of an interview and more of a sincere chat between good friends. Very enjoyable.

  32. James Reply

    Nate and Zilpha, what a great podcast. Thanks for sharing your story, Nate, and Zilpha – I love your style and the ease of your conversation making the episode less of an interview and more of a sincere chat between good friends. Very enjoyable.

  33. Sam Andy Reply

    Nate, my heart ached for you when you described the treatment you received from your new stake president when you were sent home from your mission. Contrast that to the understanding and compassion you received from various companions and your mission president. One of the paradoxes of the Church is that it seems to give license to such extremes of behavior and treatment, with each person feeling justified for doing so. I do not (yet) understand homosexuality, but I could never condone emotionally abusive treatment, especially when backed by some warped religious justification.

    It was really great to experience your genuine and honest personality through this podcast. Thanks for opening yourself up to us in this way. It was very special. I sincerely hope you find a loving companion very soon.

  34. Sam Andy Reply

    Nate, my heart ached for you when you described the treatment you received from your new stake president when you were sent home from your mission. Contrast that to the understanding and compassion you received from various companions and your mission president. One of the paradoxes of the Church is that it seems to give license to such extremes of behavior and treatment, with each person feeling justified for doing so. I do not (yet) understand homosexuality, but I could never condone emotionally abusive treatment, especially when backed by some warped religious justification.

    It was really great to experience your genuine and honest personality through this podcast. Thanks for opening yourself up to us in this way. It was very special. I sincerely hope you find a loving companion very soon.

  35. Nathaniel R Reply

    Gunnar and anyone else reading — please see PRODIGAL SONS(the documentary that Kimberly made about leaving her former identity behind while maintaining her family relationship) It is so moving and complex. I saw it with no knowledge that it would have Mormon content (I just knew it was a transgendered documentary) and the whole movie is fantastic / fascinating.

    thanks to Zilpha and Nate for this podcast. Brought back a ton of memories (also from Michigan. also a former Mormon and former Missionary)

  36. Nathaniel R Reply

    Gunnar and anyone else reading — please see PRODIGAL SONS(the documentary that Kimberly made about leaving her former identity behind while maintaining her family relationship) It is so moving and complex. I saw it with no knowledge that it would have Mormon content (I just knew it was a transgendered documentary) and the whole movie is fantastic / fascinating.

    thanks to Zilpha and Nate for this podcast. Brought back a ton of memories (also from Michigan. also a former Mormon and former Missionary)

  37. tanis Reply

    I’m a bit late to the party on this one, but what the heck.

    Nate, your story was incredibly moving, and just further cemented the way I’ve felt for a long time about the way homosexuals are treat in the church. Long before I had even considered leaving the church, in my most TBM days, I was still at odds with the church on this issue.

    I distinctly remember having a discussion with a friend one day, and feeling so bad for homosexuals in the church, because (according to the church) in order to be “worthy”, these people have to go their WHOLE LIVES without being able to experience a close, emotional connection to another person. It’s just monstrous. Whenever I think about that, I just feel awful inside. I hurt for all those people out there that think that they can’t have what everybody else in the church gets to take for granted if they want to be good.

    And Nate, this is one of the things you touched on: That it’s not just about sex. It’s about that emotional connection. Thank you for being willing to share your story. I hope it changes some hearts and minds.

  38. tanis Reply

    I’m a bit late to the party on this one, but what the heck.

    Nate, your story was incredibly moving, and just further cemented the way I’ve felt for a long time about the way homosexuals are treat in the church. Long before I had even considered leaving the church, in my most TBM days, I was still at odds with the church on this issue.

    I distinctly remember having a discussion with a friend one day, and feeling so bad for homosexuals in the church, because (according to the church) in order to be “worthy”, these people have to go their WHOLE LIVES without being able to experience a close, emotional connection to another person. It’s just monstrous. Whenever I think about that, I just feel awful inside. I hurt for all those people out there that think that they can’t have what everybody else in the church gets to take for granted if they want to be good.

    And Nate, this is one of the things you touched on: That it’s not just about sex. It’s about that emotional connection. Thank you for being willing to share your story. I hope it changes some hearts and minds.

  39. Tommy Reply

    I would love to talk to Nate sometime! I’m a gay guy who went to BYU for 2 years (and was there during Proposition 8). Now, I’ve been in upstate New York for the past year, and during that time, I’ve discovered that I have a passion for piano and am talented at it! I’m now starting music school at SUNY Purchase in 3 weeks.

    Beyond your journey with being gay, it really resonate with how you must have felt about piano in that time. I absolutely cannot believe that your mission president told you to sacrifice piano for God! That is so terrible, I don’t even know what to say about it! And then to not let you play in Church because you are gay. Such a travesty.

    Cheers from a fellow gay ex-mo pianist!

    Tommy

  40. Tommy Reply

    I would love to talk to Nate sometime! I’m a gay guy who went to BYU for 2 years (and was there during Proposition 8). Now, I’ve been in upstate New York for the past year, and during that time, I’ve discovered that I have a passion for piano and am talented at it! I’m now starting music school at SUNY Purchase in 3 weeks.

    Beyond your journey with being gay, it really resonate with how you must have felt about piano in that time. I absolutely cannot believe that your mission president told you to sacrifice piano for God! That is so terrible, I don’t even know what to say about it! And then to not let you play in Church because you are gay. Such a travesty.

    Cheers from a fellow gay ex-mo pianist!

    Tommy

  41. profxm Reply

    Great podcast. One of the best yet.

    Can I just say that I am now going to pretend in my own mind that some of the thousands I paid in tithing helped pay for Nate’s prostitute. That is a much better use of my tithing than building a temple somewhere.

  42. profxm Reply

    Great podcast. One of the best yet.

    Can I just say that I am now going to pretend in my own mind that some of the thousands I paid in tithing helped pay for Nate’s prostitute. That is a much better use of my tithing than building a temple somewhere.

  43. Jacob Brown Reply

    What an emotional and beautiful life story so far. This should be a movie; although, it does sound vaguely like “Latter Days.” I can just imagine the dramatic scene when the escort offers that the elder should follow his heart. What irony for Mormons who would see the escort as so evil yet offering such a profound experience.

    And the alcohol and coffee thing, I totally agree with Zilpha. What a disappointment. I can’t even make myself try beer or liqour because I’ve tasted how awful wine is for me. Oh well.

  44. Howard Carver Reply

    One of the best interviews I’ve heard to date.  What a touching story, Nate!  I wish you well.

Leave A Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *