I grew up as a pastor’s kid and, therefore, spent a lot of time in church. As a kid, I didn’t have many friends and found myself always searching for attention and acceptance. At an early age, I was molested by a man close to our family. As a result, I learned some things that would forever affect me. I dated girls as I went through middle school and high school, but I also experimented with guys whom I was friends with.
At the age of 19, I started dating a girl I thought was "the one," but she ended up breaking my heart. I made a vow to never be hurt again by a woman. That is when I started dating guys and felt that I was getting more attention and acceptance. I thought that my parents wouldn’t love or accept me because of the life that I chose, so I moved to Atlanta, where I started using and selling meth.
Eventually, I got involved in the gay adult entertainment industry, doing videos and magazines. At this point, my life was out of control. I was arrested multiple times and found myself potentially facing a sentence of up to 10 years in prison. But because of God and a praying community, I received a court order to go to a place called No Longer Bound, which is a regeneration program. There I found God again. I always thought I was too far gone and had done too much stuff to ever be forgiven. But, the guilt and shame fell away, and love and acceptance came. I discovered my own worth, and I learned how to forgive the people who hurt me in the past. I was able to move on.
I really didn’t have anyone when I first decided to change my life. All I had was my faith. My church was a big support, and sharing with others also made me stronger. It seems that the hardest thing to do is to truly trust God. But, He did have a plan for my life.
My life now is awesome. God brought me out of a 13-year destructive lifestyle and conquered my meth addiction. I’m no longer in a place of hopelessness, shame, and regret. Instead, I feel happiness, fulfillment, and acceptance. I have been married to my wife for three years and have a 20-month-old son and another son due in September, 2018.