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Mormon Ghost Stories

No other way

Cover Image for No other way
Moroni's Ghost
By: Moroni's Ghost

“And this is not all, my son. Thou didst do that which was grievous unto me; for thou didst forsake the ministry, and did go…after the harlot Isabel. Yea, she did steal away the hearts of many; but this was no excuse for thee, my son. Thou shouldst have tended to the ministry wherewith thou wast entrusted. Know ye not, my son, that these things are an abomination in the sight of the Lord; yea, most abominable above all sins save it be the shedding of innocent blood or denying the Holy Ghost?”

Alma 39:3-5

I remember the day it happened. It’s sick, really. And in the end it didn’t even matter. All it did was seal my mom’s fate. I’d been true to my covenants. I’d sinned my little sins, but nothing egregious. But it turns out, here on the other side, they don’t see things the way we see them. It really didn’t matter at all. Just like the priesthood ban. We simply got it wrong.

It just sucks that my Mom is doomed forever because of it. Even if she deserves it.

I was sitting in my childhood room. I’d just gotten back from my first semester at BYU and was home for Christmas. I’d served my mission right after graduating high school. I wasn’t planning on it, of course. I’d been actively applying to colleges, but then they announced the age change.

I got back, and BYU had been hell. Heck, my mission had been hell too. I’d felt like I’d been in hell for a long time.

I was seated on my childhood bed. It’d been a rough week. My depression had taken a nosedive over my first semester. My grades had suffered. I’d found people like me, but I didn’t feel like I fit in with them yet. Something had to change. But I didn’t know how to live authentically. I figured if anyone would understand, it’d be my mom. I knew she wouldn’t like it. But, I figured she would hold me as I cried. Hold me as I tried to put the pieces of my life together.

I was dead wrong.

As I sat on my bed, my mom came in to chat. We’d done it all the time as I grew up. I had been counting on it. I knew this was my moment.

She stopped and looked at the tennis trophies lining the wall. We’d played together often. She was a large reason I was so good and had gotten a scholarship to BYU. She had played back in the day and had been teaching me since I was in diapers. It was something we bonded over. It was something we loved and shared together.

“Can’t wait for you to add more to your collection” she said softly. “Are you looking forward to the season starting?”

“I guess,” I mumbled. “Honestly mom, I feel like I am drowning. Tennis is starting to feel like one more thing to add in that will just make me sink.”

“I know it’s been a hard adjustment from your mission, sweetie, but you’ll get through this funk. I’m sure of it. Just remember, the Lord knows your needs.”

“I know,” I said “but, it just feels like some things will never change, despite how badly I want them to.”

“God can change the things we think we can’t,” she said “we just have to give him room to work.”

I winced at the words.

“What if there are some things he can’t change mom?”

“Oh” she seemed taken aback “I don’t think there is anything like that.”

“Well, I’ve been praying for Him to change something for a long time, but, I don’t think it’ll ever happen.”

“What’s that dear?”

It was now or never.

“Mom, I…. I” The tears started gushing from my face. Down my cheeks and into my mouth. Sobs started to slowly make my body lurch.

“What is it?” She looked concerned.

“Mom…. I’m…” I stammered, “I’m gay…” I hung my head in shame.

A silence filled the room.

“No” she said “no, you can’t be gay. What about you and Clare in high school?”

“We barely even held hands mom, we never even kissed.”

She looked shocked.

“I didn’t know that.” she said incredulously. “Why did you never tell me?”

“I didn’t know how...”

“Well, as long as you don’t act on it, then you’ll be fine.”

“I know” I sobbed “but mom, don’t I deserve love too?”

“You do” she grabbed both my hands in hers. “And you will get love. You can still marry a wonderful woman in the temple. You can make it work. I’ve heard of many couples that make it work. I know you can too.”

“Mom” I said “I can’t do that to someone. I will just have to be single forever.” More tears streamed down my face. “Mom, sometimes… sometimes it makes me feel like I don’t want to be around anymore. Like I’d be better off dead.”

“Well, maybe that’s true.” she said matter-of-factly.

I shot backward.


“If you don’t want to marry a woman, there is a strong chance you will cave eventually. Satan is good at what he does. I’ve seen it time and time again. Eventually, you won’t want to be single anymore. Eventually you will break your covenants.”

I looked at her dumbfounded.

“I’d rather you’d be dead than gay, at least then you’d be saved with the rest of your family.” She started to speak more excitedly. “And think of your brothers and sisters, what will they think of you if you tell them this? Will they think it's ok too? Will they choose to be gay because they see you choosing that lifestyle? What about them? What about me and your dad? Do you want to destroy your whole family?” She stood up and started pacing the room.

“Mom, no… but, I don’t think I can live like this anymore.” I bowed my head in between my knees. This was not the reaction I had expected. This was the opposite of what I wanted to happen. The sobs broke out, unrestrained.

“Quiet down.” she said “Do you want someone else to hear? You can’t tell anyone else about this. I’m assuming I’m the first you’ve told?”

I nodded my head between my knees. My pants were getting soaked.

“Good” she said “I’ll take you to someone I know of. A therapist. My friend Marge, she told me her nephew had a similar issue. They took him to a therapist and he is all better now. Three kids, married 7 years. We can get through this.”

“Mom,” I wailed “mom, I’m not doing conversion therapy. That stuff is messed up. There are studies...”

“Oh!” she said “Oh! You won’t do it!? Do you know how hard I’ve worked to help this family get to where it is at? Do you know how much I have done to help all you kids be decent honest human beings? I’ve sacrificed everything for us to be together forever. We can’t be happy if you decide to live life this way.” Her voice was becoming more and more hysterical as she spoke. “We will figure out a way through this. We will make this go away. Mommy will make this go away.”

“Mom, I don’t want this to go away. Being gay is part of me, the other guys at school…”

She let out a shriek like a banshee. “Oh! You are talking to other guys at school?!? Other gays?!? That’s how this all starts, this is how this always starts. You weren’t gay when you were little. I bet it was your friend Robert in junior high. I knew something about him was off. I knew you shouldn’t have been friends with him.” Her delirium was reaching a fever pitch when suddenly, there was a pause.

“Mom?” I said after a moment, “Are you ok?”

There was another long pause. I heard her feet shuffle as she moved something around my shelves.

“You really don’t think you can change?” She finally said back.

“Mom… this is who I am” I hadn’t been able to lift my head for the last few minutes. My voice sounded muffled through my legs.

“In that case… this is the only way to save you…”

Confused, I lifted my head just in time to see the gleam of a tennis trophy as it barreled into my eye socket.

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