As promised, I have an important announcement to share with you. It’s something that I had determined months ago, but sat with it, talked to my support committee and some of you about and held in the Light since that time.
I feel confident and even excited to announce that in February 2008 I will officially retire my play, Doin’ Time in the Homo No Mo Halfway Houuse–How I Survived the Ex-Gay Movement. I premiered the play in Memphis, TN in February 2003 (on my birthday) and have since taken it far and wide. (A Google Vanity Search yields nearly 12,000 hits for the term “Doin’ Time in the Homo No Mo Halfway House“)
Back in 2003 there was very little out there countering the claims of ex-gay therapies and ministries. Mike Airhart had just started Ex-Gay Watch, and although gay activists, like Wayne Besen, spoke out against the Ex-Gay Movement, there were no ex-gay survivors telling their stories in any public way.
Since that time so much has changed. Folks like Christine Bakke and Darlene Boggle and Shawn O’Donnell and Eric Leocadio and Alex Resare and David Christie and Daniel Gonzales and (I could go on for quite some time) have come forward to share their own stories. Christine Bakke and I (with lots of help from Steve Boese, who reviewed Homo No Mo back in 2003) set up Beyond Ex-Gay (bXg) in April of this year and filled it with lots of powerful stories.
The Ex-Gay Survivor Conference and Soulforce‘s Ex-Gay Survivor Initiative have helped to highlight the concerns of ex-gay survivors and the clear message that many of us experienced more harm than good in our pursuit to suppress and change our sexuality. As a result, several survivors have shared their stories in video and placed them on YouTube. Currently there are at least eight differen documentary films in the works that all deal with the ex-gay issue. There is the autumn release of Save Me, a film about the ex-gay struggle, and new blogs by ex-gay survivors are being created weekly.
My story is out there, in large part because of my play and talks, and has been featured in news stories, documentaries, and TV programs (check out this week’s Edge article). I feel it is time for me to lay down the Homo No Mo play. In part, I want to make room for other people to tell their stories. Also, I know it will not be healthy or even interesting to be stuck in the same role for a long time. I have other plays that I do and still others in the works.
I do intend to produce a high quality DVD version of Doin’ Time in the Homo No Mo Halfway House. We may do some filming in December with hopes of having it out by the spring of 2008. And I will perform the play as often as possible between now and February. My hope is to have my final performance in Memphis. (the fall schedule will be up once I return from England)
If you have been saying for years that you MUST get Homo No Mo to a theater or church or university near you, this your time to act. Feel free to contact Sarah or me.
But more importantly I want to thank you for your support and affirmation as I have been telling my story through the Homo No Mo play. I feel a special fondness for the piece in large part because of the many amazing people I have gotten to know through performing it. Through writing, performing and re-writing the piece, I learned a great deal about myself and my own struggle.
Today I see big shifts happening in the ex-gay world and the church, so I believe my play will very soon lose its relevance and simply become historical. We have lots to celebrate, and I see this final run of Homo No Mo to be part of that celebration.