Living with Same-sex Attraction: Our Story
Ty and Danielle Mansfield - May 22, 2012
On Making It Work
Even though that e-mail was written before Danielle and I were married, it encapsulates what we’ve been seeking to cultivate in our marriage since then and what has been the foundation of our relationship. And it’s been beautiful and rich and rewarding.
I think the greatest difficulties Danielle and I have experienced in our marriage are fairly typical of what most people experience—balancing work, school, family time, Church callings, and other interests; figuring out how to keep bills paid; etc. I think the joys have also been fairly typical of those that grow out of any healthy, gospel-centered relationship.
The thing I love most about my relationship with Danielle is the friendship we share. If there’s anyone who knows how to make me laugh, it’s Danielle. It’s one of the first things that drew me to her. We love to spend time with each other.
One of the greatest joys we’ve experienced has been the expansion of our family with little Gabriel. I know I’m biased, but I think he’s got to be the cutest kid ever born. I can’t look at him and not smile. There’s something so sacred and special about knowing that this little, eternal soul has been entrusted to our stewardship for his time on earth, and that we’ll be sealed together for the eternities.
Some have wondered how my openness about my experience with same-sex attraction will affect our family. When the time comes, we’ll figure out how to explain our story to our children. More than anything, I want them to know that they can talk about anything and that it’s okay to be honest about anything they feel or believe. If there is anything they struggle with, I don’t want them to feel shame about it. And I believe one of the most important ways to teach that kind of authenticity and openness is to model it.
© LDS Living, May/June 2012.