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Jake Jacob (solid name) is an out-gay doctor who recently looked back on his “life-altering” decision to walk away from the Mormon church, an institution widely known for its anti-LGBTQ policies and attitudes.
In an emotional Instagram post, Jacob wrote about the day he decided to no longer wear his “magic underwear,” which those in the church would call ‘temple garments.’
Noticeably clad in a t-shirt and briefs, Jacob said, “It’s been 12 years since I decided to stop wearing them, it made no sense since I was having sex with men which is a mortal sin against the Mormon church’s teachings.”
“The conscious decision to take my garments off was life-altering physically, emotionally, and spiritually. It was my last physical reminder, for good or bad, of my ties to childhood religion. It was liberating for my body to finally remove the oppressive clothing that insisted I always stay covered instead of celebrating the body God gave me. It was also liberating to eliminate the constant reminder of childhood guilt and trauma, like shedding unnecessary shame I’d been carrying for years about who I am and my God-given orientation that I can’t and shouldn’t change.
“It was a necessary step in overcoming years of conversion therapy that taught me I was broken and somehow God was suppose to fix me if I was righteous enough, an ever-moving impossible goal post. I shed the self loathing and disdain engrained into myself with a lifetime of being told I was the equivalent of a pedophile and a murderer simply for wanting the same love heterosexual people enjoyed so naturally in the culture at the time.
“Sliding into my sheets without any clothes the first night I felt freedom I’d never experienced before. I could choose how I presented my body to the world, not a corporate religious organization. It started a journey of loving my own body, embracing my flaws, of actually looking in the mirror and choosing to like what I see without guilt or forced “humility” which I now know was the quest for impossible constant perfection of body and mind. I began loving myself for who I am independent of a higher power’s approval or acceptance of my peers.
“Today with good and bad days but I am grateful for that pinnacle step of self acceptance. I’m grateful I took a chance stepping into the unknown discovering a life I never dreamed could be so fulfilling.”
Here’s some more from his Instagram: