So she ran away from home at 16 with nothing but the clothes on her back. Her best friend’s parents adopted her in. Poor thing had severe PTSD from the whole experience. Night terrors, screaming, sweating, crying, certain things would set her off. Like thousand yard stare set her off.
One night I tried to wake her from a particularly bad night terror and she punched me square in the face. When she woke up she started to cry and apologize, I always felt so sorry for her, and so helpless cause there was nothing I could do other than listen and hold her when she needed it.
7. I managed to get by with little more than a talking-to from my pastor, but I heard stories of a lot of weird stuff from friends who went through it. Forcing the kids to dress a certain way and act in exaggeratedly masculine or feminine ways, pairing off the kids in couples and making them "practice" dating (this was never elaborated to me and I didn't ask), showing the kids porn, all kinds of messed up stuff.
6. The best example I can offer is this:
A gay tuba player I know went through "conversion therapy." He said, "It was like being told I should play the violin, instead of the tuba."
He tried it.
Now he's happily married to his gay partner, and proud of it.
5. Dated a woman that was raised as a fundamentalist Christian. She lived a very closeted life in her 20's. In her 30's, she confessed to someone at her church about her 'sins'. They put her in a variation of a 12-step program for curing her gayness.
They encourage members of this program to date and marry and so she married a guy. They told her if she just prayed hard enough, Jesus would heal her.
In her mid 40's she decided she was tired of living a lie. That's when I met her. While there was a part of her that wanted to be with women, she was so brain washed by her church, she just couldn't fully walk away. After a year we stopped dating and she went back to her husband.
4. When I was 24, I was recruited to go to a year-long ministry in California where I lived with 35 other guys who were also trying not to be gay. We lived a fundamentalist, almost cult-like existence. Three months in, one of the leadership trainees had fallen in love with me and relentlessly pursued me. (continued…)