(part 5 of 5) In part 5 of his interview, Rich Wyler, life-coach and founder of the non-profit People Can Change and “Journey Into Manhood”, explains that his philosophy isn’t about force and expresses gratitude for what he has learned from his experience with same-sex attraction.
When coaching a young LDS man who was cruising the Internet for hook-ups, the young man was surprised when Rich suggested that if he’s going to be gay anyway, he might find a gay men’s group at a community college or explore healthier ways to be gay. If the young man didn’t even desire to resolve his same-sex attractions, it’s better not to risk his life. When Kendall clarifies that his purpose for entering Journey Into Manhood doesn’t include a certainty that his same-sex attraction is necessarily “unwanted”, Rich says most of the staff of the weekends attest that having same-sex attraction has been one of the great blessings of their life because of the personal growth, connection, and meaning they’ve found in response to it. It has given Rich a life mission beyond anything he would’ve had otherwise, and God has turned it into something powerfully beneficial to him, and he’s thankful for having experienced it. Rich explains that in a way, he is more same-sex attracted than ever, but that attraction is about healthy and fulfilling brotherhood rather than the conflicted mix of fear and craving that it used to be. As for others who say their experience doesn’t fit what he’s saying, he frankly replies, “I never wanna say that my life story is your solution, but don’t tell me that your life story is my solution, either.”
by Jay Jacobsen
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(The views expressed in this interview do not necessarily reflect those of the producers of Far Between but are reflective of a part of what it means to be homosexual and Mormon today.)