When I ran for office I made a commitment to be authentic and honest. Today is a day to be honest, hopeful and trusting. Today is a day to follow the words of Dr. King and drive out darkness with light and drive out hate with love.
Posted by Nathan Ivie Utah County Commissioner on Wednesday, May 22, 2019
UTAH COUNTY, Utah, May 22, 2019 (Gephardt Daily) — Utah County Commissioner Nathan Ivie has publicly come out as being gay in a video shared to his official Facebook page Wednesday.
Ivie shared this caption to accompany the video:
“When I ran for office I made a commitment to be authentic and honest. Today is a day to be honest, hopeful and trusting. Today is a day to follow the words of Dr. King and drive out darkness with light and drive out hate with love.”
“I love Utah. I love my home and our community, the kinship we feel here,” Ivie, a Republican, said in the video.
“I’m sharing my story with you today, because I know I need to be honest with my friends, my family and my neighbors here in Utah County. What I have to say is not easy for me and may not be taken well by everyone who hears it. I understand that.”
“I just hope you’ll hear what I have to say with the same spirit I want to share it with. There’s no easy way to say this; I might as well just jump up and say it. I’m gay. That’s my reality.”
Ivie said he has spent decades wrestling with who he is, but added that he has come to understand and accept himself.
“I understand the impact my discoveries have had and will have on others, yet, I’m still the same person I’ve always been,” Ivie said.
“As I’ve been honest to those closest to me, I’ve been thankful for how so many have responded. Even if they can’t completely understand the changes in my life, they’ve made it clear that they love and support me, no matter what, just as I would do for them.”
Ivie said that, as a child, he thought there was something wrong with him, and described a failed suicide attempt when he was 22.
“Though I tried to live the life that was expected of me, the truth is I never felt comfortable in my own skin,” he said. “I felt I was living someone else’s life, rather than my own. I felt deceptive, not just to others, but to myself.”
“I’ve come to accept that while I may be different, I’m still a loving person, worthy of love, who values others and hopes to be valued. I’m as committed today as I have ever been to my faith, family and freedom.”
He said he realized he could not continue to live a lie. Ivie said that sharing the truth with his wife was hard.
“But together, after long days and nights of confronting this issue, we’ve come to a place of loving understanding. She’s my best friend and supporter, and I’m hers.”
Ivie said they will be dissolving their marriage, but they will be moving forward as a different kind of family for their two children.
Ivie said that he accepts that not everyone will understand his announcement.
“But I’ve also learned that most people in my life are far more understanding than I ever thought possible,” he added. “Those experiences can and have brought me to tears.”
He concluded: “Tomorrow is a new day. The sun will come up again, we’ll all have work and responsibilities; things to do. Who I am, it doesn’t change any of that.”
Ivie said he will continue to serve Utah County as County Commissioner “with all my heart.”
The County Commissioner’s bio on the UtahCounty.gov page said Ivie was raised in Bluffdale, where he worked on his family’s Quarter Horse ranch. Ivie attended Utah State University, then went to work “for one of the top horse trainers in America.”
Following a two year mission for The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, he returned home to run and expand his family’s equestrian operation that was relocated to Utah County in the spring of 2004.
Ivie’s official biography continues his story.
“He has consistently been one of the leading reining horse trainers in the Intermountain West winning multiple year end championships and other titles,” his bio said.
“He also enjoys coaching his children’s basketball teams, is an avid football fan, and frequents art museums and the ballet,” his bio said. “He and his wife Stephanie are the proud parents of two children and three Golden Retrievers. When asked, he most often refers to himself as a ‘cowboy with a camera in love with America.'”