44 Year Old, ex "Evangelist", out of the closet and moving on....what to tell my teenage boys ?....

Page:   1 2 3

Joined in 2010
June 13, 2010, 01:52


I am a 44 year ex ministry Evangelist married to a supportive and understanding wife of 16 years.We have 2 boys aged 13 and a half and 11 and a half and to the outside world have it all, perfect marriage, happy kids, big home etc etc.

I grew up knowing I was different , but not sure why, beaing gay was not even on my radar screen and I tried to fit in. Found God at 25 and married at 27 to my first girlfriend. Sex before marriage was not even a consideration so that side of things was easy to manage.

Started to work full time in the ministry a year after marriage and on the mission field.My struggles eemed to reduce, but were always there.

I immersed myself in the ministry in the hope that it would keep me focused and rid me of my desires. 10 years ago , we mad the decision to leave the ministry(nothing to do with my sexual orienation) and have lived a secular life.

2 years ago, I told my wife of my struggle to reconcile my sexual orientation with my faith and our relationship. I have been in therapy since then , attend ex gay support groups and wrestled with the idea that I am gay. I have put it down to so many other things, (just a kink, odd perversion,weird quirk etc).

My wife believed that I could be “cured” of these feelings and I believed that I could also be cured, hence the therapy and regular ex gay support group. I told my self to just pray (as I have done for the past 20 years).

I have finally found peace and recognised who i am , (a gay man),and want I want,I have made peace with my faith although i still struggle with it from time to time.

Now ready to move on and allow my wife to move on to , it has been a difficult two years for both of us.

What do I tell my teenage boys , who have no idea of my struggles ?. The internal conflict to live an authentic life versus the potential damage it may do to them is immense. Will it change their view of God?, Marriage?, Relationships ?,their own emerging sexuality ?, how will they reconcile this information with what thy believe the bible teaches about homosexuality ?.

Sometimes I feel I am doubled minded and sit on the fence. I cant continue like this.

This is the most difficult part of the journey for me…..

Joined in 2010
June 13, 2010, 03:17

Hi Johnno1965

Welcome to this amazing and supportive community. I know that the people here will be able to help you on the journey you are on just like they are helping me. I cant answer your questions as I am very new here also but I can tell you I have been helped heaps in the last week or so. I know they will be able to help you too.

Anthony Venn-Brown
Joined in 2005
June 13, 2010, 09:47

Johnno1965 ….welcome…..glad you found us. will post more later…..just wanted to say hi at least……and make you feel welcome in the community.

Ann Maree
Joined in 2008
June 13, 2010, 12:03

Hi Johnno1965

Welcome to f2b!

There are others like yourself here with children who are faced with that same issue of how and when to divulge sexuality in order to cause the least hurt. There are also others who have successfully moved through that phase and have maintained good relationships with their children. Have you talked with anyone from PFLAG (parents and friends of lesbians and gays) ? They might be able to provide some helpful insights.

Keep taking with us.


Ann Maree

Joined in 2008
June 13, 2010, 16:03

Hi Johnny1965,

I am the child of a gay dad who was in the ministry and part of the church community when I found out about my dad. I was 13 years old. Admittedly I am a female too, so I can imagine that my journey might be different too. They will have already formed opinions about gay men through their peers and what they may have had from the pulpit.

My mum was the one who told me, along with a few of her closest friends, and so I can’t give you any insight on telling them yourselves. But my mum was honest and upfront. Then the best part about it all was the ongoing support she gave to enourage a relationship with my dad.

My dad was great too and gave me all the time I needed to be able to come to terms with the knowing that he was gay. He never had an agenda to ‘win me over’, he just was who he was, and now we are so fortunate to have a great and very healthy relationship.

I have to be honest, it hurt. It hurt real bad for a very long time. The worst part is not so much the resolution of the relationship but the judgements of the church people that unfortunately I still deal with as an adult and not a parent myself too. I guess all you can do it prepare them by being truthful and upfront. Don’t allow any question to be off limits, answer all questions with honesty and without reservation. This will help in them seeing there is nothing wrong with it. This is a strategy that I have also used myself in telling my girls about my dad which has served me well. But hey, you’re a parent and your kids will love you. If you have a good spouse on your side (which it seems you do) this is a great step in the right direction.

I hope this provides you with some insight from the other side. I am still a church goer, I have not lost my faith or my relationship with my family (any of them). I feel very blessed for what I have been through.

I wish you the best with this conversation with your boys.


Joined in 2010
June 14, 2010, 02:05

Hi Johnno,

i feel i should post something but don’t know quite what to say. it sounds like we are about in the same place in our journeys … it definitely is nice to know that i’m not the only one struggling through this process.

when you said

Sometimes I feel I am doubled minded and sit on the fence. I cant continue like this.

This is the most difficult part of the journey for me…..

what were you eluding to being the most difficult part? the telling of your children or homosexuality being a sin?

as i ask you that question, i’m thinking to myself BOTH. i am so stuggling with both of these issues right now. my kids are a bit younger than yours (8,9,11). my husband and i want to do what’s best for them. we don’t want to hurt them. our questions are much like yours … what is their journey going to look like? what are they going to have to endure because of me? what will this do to their faith? how will they react? when is the best time to tell them? i know full well that there is no set answer to any of these questions. and we will do our best to do it age-appropriately.

and in regards to the second issue … i, too, am so confused. there is so much research out there that my head is already spinning and i know i haven’t even scratched the surface as to how much is actually out there. i can’t imagine the confusion and inner turmoil you have been in because of going to the ex-gay meetings and such. this is a process that i’m finding out is the hardest for me.

my reason for posting is just to let you know that you are not alone. and that someone else is struggling @ your same point in the journey. i most definitely don’t have the answers but i know that what ever we do LET IT BE IN LOVE! i did not get married to hurt anyone and i have always done what’s best for my family … and now is no different.

journeying with you …

Anthony Venn-Brown
Joined in 2005
June 14, 2010, 02:30

possibly Johhno this is something you and your wife have to come an agreement on

some things to consider would be.

1. When do I tell them eg…..some parents tell the kits all at once….some at different ages

2. How much do I tell them eg……it might be sufficient just to say you are gay…..or same sex oriented… much of your journey do they need to know.

3. How do I tell them……individually……together….with your wife with you or just you.

Ann Maree
Joined in 2008
June 14, 2010, 17:19

Hi all

happyprecious, it’s so great to have your input here. Thanks for sharing of your experience and wisdom in this area. We need to hear more from you!

myjourney316, I love what you say here:

“…what ever we do LET IT BE IN LOVE! i did not get married to hurt anyone and i have always done what’s best for my family … and now is no different.”

It doesn’t mean the journey will be easy but you’re maintaining a focus of love and integrity through it all. And how true to remember that your commitment to your family’s wellbeing doesn’t disappear just because you’re having to share difficult news with them. The person you are is still the same at your very essence despite the news of your sexuality. This will be comforting for you and your family to hold onto: that you as a loving gay mother are the same person you were before.

avb, I like that you’ve broken things into simple points for Johnno1965 to focus on. Things can be too overwhelming otherwise.

Johnno1965, were you meaning that being undecided and in a state of inner turmoil is the most difficult part of where you are now? I hope it’s helping at least in a small way to be sharing and discussing at this site.


Ann Maree

Joined in 2008
June 14, 2010, 23:09

Hi Johnno,

Welcome to freedom2b[e]. Thanks for sharing. Having never been married I don’t think I could imagine what it might be like for you and your family atm. There are others here on the forum who have experiences similar to yours who can provide support. Could I share a quote with you by Albert Einstein;

“There are two ways to live: you can live as if nothing is a miracle; [or] you can live as if everything is a miracle”

Glad to have you here with us!

Joined in 2010
June 15, 2010, 06:16

Thanks to all of you for reading and taking the time to post replies. This weekend has been difficult for me, I feel that I have made peace with my orienation, (at leat 90%). I can look myself in the mirror and not feel disgusted and worthless for who I am. I have also made peace with reconciling my orientation with my faith (80%), altho i still struggle at times when i read the “clobber” passages to see how God can accept me with my orienattion.

My biggest source of heartache and depression is my wife, who is amazing and kids. She wants to journey with me, but she wants me to believe that God can make our marriage work even though we desire and want different things. I have done the “right” thing for years and cant go on pretending or denying who i am.

I want to experience the fullness of being my true authentic self and the only way I see this happening means to end our relationship and to go seperate ways. The thought that I am breaking up my family to do this drags me to the brink of dispair and I have often contemplated suicide as the only way out.

I know that I cant go on denying who I am and want to be, but I also dont want to hurt the people I care the most about in the world.Sometimes I feel like I am just being selfish and should excercise Agape love ie just sacrifice what I want for the family. At other times I feel that I need to do what is being true to myslf and who i am. This is where I feel double minded.

I try to be as gentle with her as possible , as I feel she already experienced so much rejection since she found out that i am Gay.I dont want to hurt her or my kids, but I also cant do the “married” thing anymore If there is 1 thing I have learned , it is that honesty is the best policy , even if it hurts.

Which is worse, stick around and be depressed and unhappy but in a family unit or seperate and try to get on as best we can as a “broken” family unit ……..

The journey is long and painful……..

Page:   1 2 3
WP Forum Server by ForumPress | LucidCrew
Version: 99.9; Page loaded in: 0.061 seconds.