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Surviving conversion therapy & coming out as gay is hard. It takes time, bravery & strength. But we do & we celebrate & honor the LGBTQ community!

I started to realize I might be gay at a fairly young age.  I remember hiding under my covers at night, pleading with God for it to not be the case.  Growing up in an extremely conservative Christian family in Texas I knew what “being gay” meant.  It meant consequences.

Risk Eternal Salvation?

states that ban conversion therapy for minors
States Where Conversion Therapy for Minors is Banned (source: wikimedia)
I didn’t want to lose my family, my friends, my church, and my eternal salvation.  I wrestled with my faith and my sexuality and eventually shared my feelings with my family.  I was put in conversion therapy the very next day.  I was cut off from certain people and things that would potentially cause me to “stumble” or “relapse”.  I also was not allowed to tell people what was going on.

Depression Sets In

In the beginning of therapy, I was so depressed and scared that I was willing to give it my best effort in hopes of changing and finding happiness.  This did not happen.  During that year I felt myself becoming more and more isolated, lost and voice of feeling than I ever had. Eventually I went off to college where I studied politics and religion.  I wanted to discover for myself what I believed and who I wanted to be as a result.  But I was still so terrified to come to terms with who I was and what it would mean.
 
 
 
 
 
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https://www.thevillageden.com/born-perfect-tshirt/born-perfect-limited-t-shirts. #BornPerfect link is also in bio

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Finding Jessica, Finding Peace

It took three years before I truly allowed myself to be fully honest with those around me at school.  But once I did, I found myself surrounded by individuals that supported me regardless of who I was or wasn’t and pushed me to think and feel with my soul and heart rather than my surroundings and bias.  I eventually realized I can have my faith and love who I love and reconciled with the truth, my truth.

Since coming out life still has not always been easy.  I wish I had a better relationship with my immediate family.  I pray daily that one day I will.  But I have experienced more love, friendship, and true community and happiness than I could have ever felt possible.

Coming Out is Hard!

Coming out is hard, it takes time, bravery, and strength.  This is why we celebrate it and tell our stories as a testament to those before us who have paved the way.  We also share our stories as a message to those who have yet to do so.  For those not ready yet, you are loved, you are worthy, and when you are ready you will be welcomed.Jessica Ritter

#NationalComingOutDay

Jessica Ritter

Jessica Ritter

I’m 26 years old from Dallas Texas. I went to college at a Rhodes College in Memphis where I double majored in political science and religious studies. I played golf there and won the National Championship in 2014. I currently live in Dallas Texas with my dogs Ralph and Leo. Insta @jessicajritter | Twitter @jjritter_ 🌈Visibility Matters Help end #ConversionTherapy ⬇️ http://www.BornPerfect.org

Do you have a COMING OUT story that you want to share?  We love collaborating with our fellow LGBTQ community!  Get in touch with us to discuss how you can also become a guest contributor & share YOUR story & experience.  You never know how your story may affect someone else who is struggling and just needs some encouragement and inspiration.  Be that person.

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