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#245960 - 08/21/08 02:57 AM Am I really gay
feelingafraid Offline
Member
MaleSurvivor

Registered: 04/08/08
Posts: 76
Loc: 5,471 FT above sea level




Edited by feelingafraid (11/24/08 06:49 PM)
_________________________
Hes a little boy let him be a little boy for the boy we never got to be.
Timmy

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#245979 - 08/21/08 08:36 AM Re: Am I really gay [Re: feelingafraid]
Sans Logos Offline
Member
MaleSurvivor

Registered: 05/31/03
Posts: 5791
Loc: in my own world in pittsburgh,...
toby, what jumps out immediately on reading your post is the subtext that seems to be hidden between the lines.

i guess using your line of thinking you could surmise that all women marry their fathers as well. judging from statistical reports, i think it is pretty clear that all kinds of people often couple for less than altruistic reasons.

but what concerns me most is that there seems to be a tendency in general in our culture to use heterosexual relationships as a model for all relationships. yes, currently this is being challenged, as attitudes toward gay relationships are changing, and more and more people are becoming less invested in the model that has grown out of traditional religious belief systems. being hard-wired for community, partnerships are not free standing, but rather function best in the context of a larger community, in so far as they contribute to the fusion and edification of a particular community's code of ethics. the tendency is still very strong to measure our coupling by the heterosexual model.

at this point in our history though, we have a better vantage point from which to study the dynamics of non-traditional families, and are finding out that more and more people are products of non-traditional relationships. what used to be 'ideal' is now no longer deemed so, and well-adjusted people are being born and bred into all manner of social configuration [much to the chagrin, i might add, of those who oppose anything other than the traditional hetero man/woman coupling model].

the truth is we are all [still, as ever] involved a discovery process as we learn to yield to the new formations that are emerging as expressions of human being. what is of primary importance in any relationship/partnership? is the relationship you are in an expression of commitment to values that transcend the desires of one individual? is there a sense of equity in the balance of power. is each person willing to explore the possibility of adjusting themselves to achieve a better balance?

well, of course none of that would seem to address the reason why you posted, but i think it does, because again, our relationships, rarely happen out of context; be they an older man with a younger man, an older woman with a younger man or vice versa.

i think it important that you ask yourself these questions as you continue to grow into your human potential, the person who you believe you are meant to be, while using the stuff of your own natural [internal and external] resources to participate in the construction process.

the wonderful thing to remember is that you always have the power to change your direction when you find that something is not a good fit for your particular constitution.

more than ever, here in this country at least, humans have to the power to explore and to realize as never before the heights and depths of their human potential. now that the walls of 'propriety' are being broken down and the lines of limitation are dissolving.

it really does not matter to me if you ultimately discern your orientation to be gay, straight, bi or whatever. i think that it is just important to keep an open mind, and bring your best honesty to any relationship, always aware that change is inevitable in every human life, and that's not necessarily either a 'good' or 'bad' thing. scary? yes indeed! the responsibility to choose is always a risk. but continue to ask these hard questions and trust that that which loved you into being will continue to lead and support you as your life unfolds.

if you feel like it check out these two organizations that will provide support and perhaps inspiration along the way:

soulforce

white crane journal

your brother in recovery,

ron

_________________________
  1. the past
  2. ReClaiming Now
  3. advocacy


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#245986 - 08/21/08 09:53 AM Re: Am I really gay [Re: Sans Logos]
VLinvictus Offline
Member
MaleSurvivor

Registered: 12/05/07
Posts: 273
Loc: NY
I don't think anyone is "really" gay or straight. These are artificial categories that our sexist, patriarchal culture has forced us into.

What matters is what you actually feel and desire. That can take a lot of time and work to sort out, even for those who are not survivors.

It would be a good idea to think about what it is that excites you and arouses you physically, and what it is that you crave emotionally in a partner and pursue those goals, rather than trying to force yourself to adhere to an arbitrary label.

Dan

_________________________
We are all in the gutter, but some of us are looking at the stars.
~ Oscar Wilde

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#246115 - 08/21/08 09:19 PM Re: Am I really gay [Re: VLinvictus]
1islandboy Offline
Member
MaleSurvivor

Registered: 06/23/08
Posts: 858
Loc: washington
I'm with VL,

could't have said it better myself. Somehow I feel like latching onto that, "labels are for soup cans", concept.

I think the important thing is to look for and live in the solution.

I happen to be blessed in a newly sober relationship with a girl, and I totally dig her.


Blew my groove, Def + Leppard - lyrics = @ Adrenalize # album.

island

_________________________
Rise above the storm and you will find the sunshine ~ M.F. Fernandez

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#246154 - 08/22/08 02:20 AM Re: Am I really gay [Re: 1islandboy]
feelingafraid Offline
Member
MaleSurvivor

Registered: 04/08/08
Posts: 76
Loc: 5,471 FT above sea level




Edited by feelingafraid (11/24/08 06:50 PM)
_________________________
Hes a little boy let him be a little boy for the boy we never got to be.
Timmy

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#246168 - 08/22/08 10:07 AM Re: Am I really gay [Re: feelingafraid]
LandOfShadow Offline
Member
MaleSurvivor

Registered: 12/11/07
Posts: 684
Loc: Minneapolis, Minnesota USA
Toby,

Here's some perspective from a 49 y.o. guy who's been down this road...

I think you are asking some really important questions for you. I sounds like there are some kind of influences in your early experiences and your current attractions and relationships. Only you can really sort that out...

I've had simular tangles of early experiences getting acted out in relationships. Sorting it all out is a very good thing... I feel I wasn't really living the present but re-living the past, trying to somehow resolve it. Only a good therapist has really helped me do that.

As for gay, straight, bi ... I've lost interest in choosing a label! I don't really know what it means for me. Abusive experiences certainly forced me to choose male partners for a long time. Exploring a relationship with a woman recently has been really healing and ... lots of things. I think my natural sexuality got completely crushed and lost by the abusive stuff. Even so, I don't think there is anything wrong or invalid or unequal about my same sex relationships to an opposite sex one. It's all much more complicated than people generally realize for sure... And a one word label seems kind of meaningless to me.

My advice for survivors wondering if they are gay or straight is:

Forget about this question! It just doesn't lead you anywhere. Just tell people something. Instead, focus on how you are, how you feel with someone (whatever sex) and being free now of what happened in the past. And being happy with them.

_________________________
Et par le pouvoir d’un mot Je recommence ma vie, Je suis né pour te connaître, Pour te nommer
Liberté

And by the power of a single word I can begin my life again, I was born to know you, to name you
Freedom

Paul Eluard

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#246345 - 08/24/08 01:12 AM Re: Am I really gay [Re: LandOfShadow]
Bewlayb1 Offline
Guest

Registered: 08/03/07
Posts: 241
Loc: NYC
I found this post interesting. I am also attracted to older men and also wonder if I am "really" gay. I'm certain that I was born gay, that I would have been gay if not for the abuse, but the CSA warped my desires. I don't like sex. Sex doesn't factor at all into what I'm looking for in a relationship. Instead, I tend to seek out men who treat me like a child.

I was in one bad relationship which ended in early April. He was only eight years older than I am, but he was much taller and larger. I felt demeaned and overpowered by him. Since then, I've been trying to change my pattern. What I "want" in a man doesn't make me happy. I'm drawn to controlling men, but I hate nothing more than being controlled. I'm wondering if I should be with a woman.

Obviously, I'm very confused. I don't know if I should be giving you advice. Just the same, I have to say that, I, personally, am disturbed by my attraction to older men. To me, it's a sign that I haven't grown enough emotionally. I'm not confident enough to take charge in a relationship. I need to be more independent. I don't want to look for a man to take care of me. I want to take care of myself.

So, I've been taking a break from love to do some soul-searching. Maybe your story is different. I don't know. I'm just relating my experience. But if you're questioning the nature of your attraction to these older men, it seems like you're not happy with them. If that's the case, perhaps you should make a conscious effort to avoid your usual type. Try talking to someone younger and see what happens. Maybe an equal instead of a parent will leave you more fulfilled.

I think that if you're predominantly attracted to men, it's unlikely that the abuse "made" you gay. However, I understand what it's like to feel sexually neutered, because I feel the same way. Even with older men, I feel it's less about lust than being aroused by the way I am desired. That's partly why it causes so much torment: I know it must come from the abuse.

Don't worry about if you're "really" gay. If you want to be with a woman, be with a woman. If you want to be with a man, be with a man. If, like me, you want to be alone and take some time to figure out what you really want, feel free to do that too.


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#251877 - 09/29/08 04:27 PM Re: Am I really gay [Re: Bewlayb1]
sunwolf Offline


Registered: 09/20/08
Posts: 225
Loc: Indiana
I think am bisexual...but I have the same issues as feelingafraid...I like and date older men...there seems to be an attachemnt to the father fugure..in my case my father was absent a lot from my life and i wish he could have been there to protect me...when i was 14 I had my first experience with and adult..he was nicer than my borother and cousins and the bully guys at school...so for meeven if i was molested by yhat guy it was nicer...


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#252041 - 09/30/08 06:04 AM Re: Am I really gay [Re: sunwolf]
roadrunner Offline
Administrator Emeritus
MaleSurvivor

Registered: 05/02/05
Posts: 22045
Loc: Carlisle, PA
Toby,

There are two ways of looking at the problem you face. Taking your question as a starting point, it may be that your interest in older guys is an abuse issue. An abused boy can quickly come to the conclusion that he is "only good for one thing", and he may also figure that if someone is nice to him that undeserved favor should be repaid with sex. That kind of broken thinking can easily continue well after the abuse ends (have you seen my story "Thank you, George" in the last Newsletter?) and on into adulthood. That is, an abused boy can become an adult who seeks sexual relationships with older men, but isn't necessarily gay.

But the other way to look at this, Toby, is to question your question. In our society heterosexuality is the assumed norm, and if that's where you start from, if you look at men as a whole and see that the majority are "straight", then the natural thing to do would seem to be to ask why some guys don't follow this trend. That is, why are gay men gay? And once that question is on the table, unless you look at things more carefully then you quickly into the territory of challenging gay men to justify themselves.

But do gay men need to do that? In practical terms I guess they do, since there is so much prejudice in the world against them and this needs to be countered. But in moral terms it seems to me that gays don't owe anyone any explanation for who they are and what they do sexually. If you are gay, you're gay and that's it. If someone else doesn't like it, fine, let them not get into a gay relationship.

I have said this on other occasions, Toby, but I would put three questions to you:

1) Are you being totally honest with yourself about your sexual feelings and desires?
2) Are you responsible and open about yourself with your sexual partners?
3) Do you feel sexually fulfilled?

If the answer to all three of those questions is yes, then you should be okay. You're being you and you're showing responsibility where others are concerned; you're on the right track.

But I think your answers to some of these questions might be no, in which case perhaps these areas show you where the problem lies. I would say the possibility of abuse issues being involved here, in one way or another, is very high.

Much love,
Larry

_________________________
Nobody living can ever stop me
As I go walking my freedom highway.
Nobody living can make me turn back:
This land was made for you and me.
(Woody Guthrie)

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#252047 - 09/30/08 08:12 AM Re: Am I really gay [Re: roadrunner]
Sans Logos Offline
Member
MaleSurvivor

Registered: 05/31/03
Posts: 5791
Loc: in my own world in pittsburgh,...
larry thank you for the affirming message.

Originally Posted By: roadrunner
In our society heterosexuality is the assumed norm

that right there is the tissue stuck to the heel of my shoe which triggers my disdain for the judgmental mentality that some people eschew in condemnation of us.

even though we come to realize that we are gay and that's ok, for some of us [me] a knee jerk tendency to self-defense seems to have become galvanized over time; it's hard to dismantle that because it becomes foundational.

i am grateful that a man of your intelligence, enlightenment and education understands. now if only the idiots [sorry, is there a more appropo de>
_________________________
  1. the past
  2. ReClaiming Now
  3. advocacy


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#252076 - 09/30/08 11:37 AM Re: Am I really gay [Re: Sans Logos]
EGL Offline
Moderator Emeritus
MaleSurvivor
Registered: 06/19/04
Posts: 7821
Hi Toby,

I think the question of whether you're gay or not is not as important as the question of what you are comfortable with. If you feel comfortable dating much older men, then that's really all that's relevant, in my opinion. Society doesn't blink much of an eye at an older man with a young woman, but we all know that a young man with an older woman causes stares and whispers. But that's just society's hangups. All that really matters is whether you are happy or not. If you are, then there's your answer. Peace and good luck to you, friend.

_________________________
Eddie

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#252080 - 09/30/08 12:14 PM Re: Am I really gay [Re: EGL]
M3 Offline
Member
MaleSurvivor

Registered: 09/04/07
Posts: 1392
Loc: Central Ohio
Wow Toby, you have gotten a lot of advice on this. Here is a bit more. (Just what you need, right? LOL)

Work on your recovery and do not about your sexuality. The two are so knotted up right now that you may need some time to separate the two and do some healing before you can look at this topic clearly.

Do not let yourself get stressed by this or put pressure on yourself to "make a decision." When you are ready, I think this will be clear to you.

Peace and love...

Michael


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#252085 - 09/30/08 12:27 PM Re: Am I really gay [Re: feelingafraid]
cbfull Offline
Member
MaleSurvivor

Registered: 01/26/07
Posts: 386
Loc: Ohio
Your sexuality is as unique as you are. You cannot put a label on that. Labels only create pain and confusion. I think everyone here would agree with that.

Craig

_________________________
Craig

Guilt and shame have never done any of us any good at all.

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