A Conversion Therapy Story: Truth through Fiction

I have written an essay for the next edition of The Porch. It is about storytelling and how it is sometimes difficult to figure out the best way to tell a story.

In talking about my own bizarre, emotional, and sometimes confusing 17 year experience in conversion therapy, I believe the most emotionally honest storytelling I did was through the comic play I performed. I played eight different characters, and I did not appear as myself on stage until the very end.

For the essay, watched part of the film version of the play. I had forgotten all about the penultimate monologue when Chad talks about his brother Tad and their childhood visits to the small, tired, old zoo near their home. They told stories about all of the animals in the cages creating tales of how they got there. At the last cage Tad would always say  they should sneak back into the zoo that night tolet all the zoo animals out of the cages. “And wouldn’t the zookeeper be mad about that!”

I always cried onstage at that point; those were my real tears. Although it was fiction, that was my real story.

Doin’ Time in the Homo No Mo Halfway House from Peterson Thomas Toscano on Vimeo.


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