Edit Note: This post won a 2017 Brodie Award for Best Discussion on Parenting!
Thank you to all who voted.
It has been 2 years since my son left for his Mormon mission to South America. His farewell was one of the worst moments of my life.
Nothing about his decision diminished my love for him, but his leaving and the events surrounding it left me feeling discarded and misunderstood. At his farewell in particular, I sat on the church pews listening to him pontificate on his assigned speaking topic, something about having a righteous family. Of course, that led to mentions of Jesus being the only way and how important it was that his mom had taught him about all things Jesus and Mormon.
I was just an invisible unnecessary placeholder in his eternal quest for the self-congratulatory eternal family. I was ignored completely in that sermon on family.
It hurt a lot, but I swallowed it and moved forward maintaining a loving stance.
I’ve e-mailed him each week religiously. He tells me that his companions and other missionary friends rarely get letters from their fathers. I find it fascinating how those more Mormon, but rather self-absorbed and negligent fathers are institutionally seen as better than me.
They wear the right underwear.
My e-mails have usually been full of the latest details about our family, me and his sisters. I always tried to include a healthy amount of humor. I’d send jokes or the latest memes because I know how somber and dreadfully serious everything can be on a mission.
But now that he’s coming back I’ve been dreading the same sort of snubbing at homecoming events that I experienced when he left.
So, I’ve decided that instead of feeling sorry for myself I am going to take my power back. I’ll be hosting my own welcome back party for him. I’ll be inviting my gay and ex-Mormon friends and he can invite whomever he wants. The focus will be on our joy to have him back. That’s it. I’ve run it by him and he has agreed!! I’m very excited.
I don’t want to just place my address out there on the web, but if you are in the Phoenix, AZ area on August 26 please message me and I’ll link you to the invitation. You are invited. This is the invitation without those details. What do you think?
Misfits and Mormons: Mission Homecoming Open House
When: August 26, 2017 6:00 – 9:00 PM
My Son is coming home from his mission to Chile! Please come celebrate my son’s mission return at an open house style party at my home.
I realize this is a rather odd invitation since none of you know my son and only a few of you even know me. Read and consider coming anyway.
In the 2 years that have passed I’ve met so many fellow gay Mormons and apostate Ex-Mormons that you are like family to me. So, instead of feeling left out and ignored at the typical homecoming events, I’ve decided to create my own event to celebrate my happiness to have my son back. He has agreed to participate and he will invite whomever he wants.
My son and I have a great relationship with mutual love and respect.
Join us if you can support that and help me create a safe, welcoming demilitarized zone between his believing Mormon friends and those of us who have stepped beyond it.
This event is rated PG
• No Preaching
• No criticizing or judging
• LGBT friendly
• Mormon friendly
• Apostate friendly
• No alcohol (But there’s a really cool beer and wine bar nearby that you can stop by afterwards or on your way!)
No hard end time but I’ve made it early enough that you can still go out and enjoy your Saturday night, or stick around and talk!
Come if you fit into any of these categories and bring someone who fits another one: Mormon, Ex-Mormon, Gay, Lesbian, Bi, Trans, Queer, RM, Chilean, unicorn.
We will feast upon sunshine, lollipops and rainbows.