ⓘ Saving Alex


ⓘ Saving Alex

Saving Alex: When I Was Fifteen I Told My Mormon Parents I Was Gay, and Thats When My Nightmare Began is a 2016 memoir by Alex Cooper with Joanna Brooks.


1. Summary

Alex Cooper, a Mormon 16-year old, came out as a lesbian to her parents where she is in love with a girl named Yvette. They throw her out of the house. After Alex stayed with a sympathetic neighbor for a while, she was then taken by her parents to a conversion therapy program in Utah run by the Simms who are good friends with Alexs grandparents where she was held for eight months against her will. Cooper was forced to wear a backpack full of stones to "feel the burden of being gay," beaten, kept from school, and verbally abused. She attempted suicide. When Cooper was allowed to enroll in high school, she learned of a gay-straight alliance club and eventually found a Salt Lake City attorney named Paul Burke who represented her pro bono, earning her the right to refuse conversion therapy.


2. Adaptation

On September 18, 2019, Lifetime aired an adaption of this memoir called Trapped: The Alex Cooper Story as part of its "Ripped from the Headlines" feature film. The film stars Addison Holley as Alex Cooper, Nicolette Pierce as Frankie Johnson who is based on Yvette, Sara Booth as Tiara Simms, Ian Lake as Johnny Simms, Kate Drummond as Mrs. Cooper, Wilson Cruz as Paul Burke, Steven Cumyn as Mr. Cooper, and Elisa Mooncherry as Carol Lynn.