GAY global news

Josh Weed, famous ‘ex-gay’ Mormon, announces divorce from his wife

Josh Weed made headlines in 2012 after announcing that, despite being gay, he made marriage work with a straight woman. The Seattle-based Mormon couple have been married for ten years and have four daughters together. Now, Josh and Lolly Weed have announced their divorce.

What happened?

In a blog post from Thursday, 25 January, Josh Weed wrote, ‘We are going to do our level best to explain how a marriage as beautiful and sweet and loving as ours has been can also be a marriage that—for very legitimate, important reasons, and what we feel is the urging of God himself—needs to end.’

Following a similar format as the original 2012 post that went viral, the Weeds explained their divorce in a Q&A format.

The post also included an apology to the LGBTI community. Since the original 2012 post, Josh Weed faced a lot of criticism from the LGBTI community for internalized homophobia and the promotion of conversion therapy. Weed works as a marriage and family therapist and claims he helps clients who ‘struggle to reconcile their sexual orientation with their religious beliefs.’

The Post

‘The first tributary that God used to bring us here was our love for the LGBTQ population. When we came out in 2012, Lolly and I had very little exposure to other gay people besides myself. Our post went viral in the very same year I opened my private practice, and suddenly we were thrust into the world of LGBTQ Mormons. And what we saw as the years moved forward was at once inspiring and utterly heartbreaking,’ Josh Weed wrote in the 25 January post.

‘We got to know many, many people. We heard their stories. We met children, youths as young as 13 years old, so heartbroken by what they were feeling and what they were being told by their faith community—kids with no hope for love in the future if they wanted to be acceptable to their church and family. Young bright faces who were being told not to love who they fell in love with, looking up to us as some kind of beacon of hope. Our understanding of this issue changed with every person we met, with every single story we heard. We went from thinking this was an issue that affected a few burdened souls like ourselves to understanding more and more that this issue actually touches almost every life.’

‘You see, LGBTQ people aren’t “the world”—we aren’t outsiders that the Mormon Church needs to protect itself from. We are you. We are students sitting in a seminary class, and the seminary teacher at the front of the class.’

On the topic of their divorce, Lolly wrote, ‘For me, giving my whole heart to Josh while knowing that he did not love me the way a man loves a woman has always been devastating. We were best friends, but he never desired me, he never adored me, he never longed for me. People who read our previous post might be confused because we mention having a robust sex life. That was true. We put forth a lot of effort and were “mechanically” good at sex—and it did help us to feel intimate, and for a time that closeness did help us to feel content in our sex life—but I don’t remember him ever looking at me with passion in his eyes.’

‘Josh has never looked at me with romantic love in his eyes. He has never touched me with the sensitive touch of a lover. Whenever he held me in his arms, it was with a love that was similar to the love of a brother to a sister. That does eventually take its toll on your self-esteem. No matter how much I knew “why” he couldn’t respond to me in the ways a lover responds to a partner, it wears a person down, as if you’re not “good enough” to be loved “in that way.” And what I didn’t realize is that as human beings, we actually need to feel loved in that way with our partners.’

The Apology

‘We’re sorry to any gay Mormon who even had a moment’s pause as they tried to make the breathtakingly difficult decision that I am now making—to love myself fully for exactly what God made me—because of our post,’ Josh wrote.

‘We’re sorry to any gay Mormon who received criticism, backlash, or hatred as a result of our story.’

‘We’re sorry to any LGBTQIA person who was given false hope by our story, or who used our story as part of the basis for their life-decisions.’

‘I, Josh, am sorry to the many LGBTQIA people over the years that I subconsciously saw myself as different than. I am no different than you, and any degree to which I held on to the idea that I could be gay without being gay was, I see now, a manifestation of lingering internalized homophobia born of decades of being told this part of me was evil. It was an effort to belong to the “in-group” (heterosexual members of the Mormon Church) that I was actually not a part of.’

Read the full blog post and apology here.

Got a news tip? Want to share your story? Email us .