There are seven people that Bret cherishes: his five children, his husband, and his Savior Jesus Christ. Having grown up in a conservative farming community in Idaho, Bret knew from a young age that he was gay and even at that early age he already clung to promises that if he was faithful, God would change his orientation. As a young returned missionary attending BYU, Bret’s bishop, stake president, and an apostle all counseled him to marry a wife: promising that fasting, prayer, and temple attendance would change his attraction to men. 18 years of marriage and five children later, Bret heard the same apostle who counseled him to marry his wife, say that Church leaders didn’t know if God would change lesbian and gay Mormons’ orientation and that the church did not advise lesbian and gay Mormons to marry.
Bret’s divorce, coming out, and resigning from the LDS church severely strained his relationship with his family, particularly his children. And while Bret is happily married to a man and is grateful the Church has changed its counsel, he wishes the Church would also acknowledge its past teachings and the damage they have done to lesbian and gay Mormons, their straight spouses, and their families. Today, Bret sees his sexuality as a gift from God and feels he has no time or desire to hold a grudge against the church. And although he no longer has a traditional testimony of the LDS church, Bret feels closer to Christ than he has ever felt before.
(The views expressed in this interview do not necessarily reflect those of the producers of Far Between but are reflective of some aspects of what it means to be LGBT and Mormon today.)