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#299582 - 08/16/09 10:22 PM Re: SSA or Gay [Re: Freedom49]
a2312o Offline


Registered: 08/16/09
Posts: 2
Thank You!!

I have been struggling with this for many years. I have always had a urge to get close to other males, the need for friendship, which I confused as a sexual urge (being 22; sexual urges happen quite frequently). I have always struggled with the fact that I would be considered gay. Because I want in the future a wife and kids.

I found myself over the last couple of years getting into physical situations with male and not being into it at all. I remember walking around a gay bathhouse thinking "What am I doing here!" It was purely the need to get off.

Growing up I never had any close male friends. Now I am longing for a close male friendship and I feel like I am confusing/ mixing it with my sexual urges. Being 22 these sexual urges are very frequent.

This post has cleared a lot of it up for me.

Now I just need to figure out how to separate the urges and the need for close male friendship.

Thanks Roger!!


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#299590 - 08/16/09 11:37 PM Re [Re: a2312o]
Freedom49 Offline
Member
MaleSurvivor

Registered: 12/30/07
Posts: 2723
Loc: Washington State
.




Edited by Freedom49 (05/21/10 06:16 PM)

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#300670 - 08/27/09 09:24 AM Re: SSA or Gay [Re: Freedom49]
Grunty1967b Offline
Member
MaleSurvivor

Registered: 07/28/05
Posts: 823
Loc: Australia
Roger,

This has been a really great post and Iím disappointed Iíve only come across it now. Still, better late than never.

As it turns out Iíve just seen another related post, but what speaks to me the loudest is that in my 4 years here at MS this is the first time I have come across the topic of SSA (Same Sex Attraction). Perhaps there have been posts about it before and Iíve not ďseenĒ them or maybe I just havenít come across them before. Anyway, this post is SO what Iíve needed to read about.

I appreciated the responses from everybody else so far. I have a thought from the people who would suggest that those of us with SSA are perhaps gay and just not at that place of acceptance.

I accept that could be true for some but I thought about this point Ė for those that are gay yet still have Ďunwantedí SSA isnít that a sign that things are not as they should be? Surely if a gay person is in a committed relationship is it really normal to live with and accept constant sexual thoughts about almost any two legged male that comes across their path (or at least any male that triggers them)? Surely not.

So I donít think the issue should be sidetracked by a personís sexual orientation. The issue as per the very beginning of this post is about unwanted SSA. Dare I say it could also be about OSA (opposite sex attraction). If the thingís out of whack, the thingís out of whack.

So thankyou for raising SSA from someone who has agonised over this daily since I was in my teens. Now in my forties I wish I could say Iím over it but that is not the case. It tears me up daily but I now have hope after reading more about this.

In particular, comments like that from ďa2312oĒ:
Quote:
Growing up I never had any close male friends. Now I am longing for a close male friendship and I feel like I am confusing/ mixing it with my sexual urges


These echo where Iím at too yet I am terrified that if I get close to any male I would either act out or allow them to do things to me. I canít even imagine them just being a guy whoís interacting with me. Iíve not known male to male interaction any other way than sexual or non existent.

Please Ė to everybody Ė keep the info coming and the insights active. I and all like me need it. Our lives are unbalanced, lacking and full of horrible daily triggers that seem like they will never go away.


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#300769 - 08/28/09 10:59 AM Re: [Re: Grunty1967b]
Freedom49 Offline
Member
MaleSurvivor

Registered: 12/30/07
Posts: 2723
Loc: Washington State
.




Edited by Freedom49 (05/21/10 06:16 PM)

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#300777 - 08/28/09 11:58 AM Re: SSA or Gay [Re: Freedom49]
DJsport Offline
Member
MaleSurvivor

Registered: 02/20/08
Posts: 1742
Hi, All.

I just started posting at this site and interacting here a few months ago.

I have been in "recovery" from the csa for 3 years and "out" for nearly 20 years. I dealt with the sexuality issues in my life at different times in my life. I "accepted" my gayness with some reservation because of the myth I had to get married to a women to be whole. I know women have the same thought about "having" to be married to be whole beings.

I will be brief and to the point about this issue of ssa or gay as far as MY opinion. For me the word "or" means a decision or direction needs to be taken.

I came out as a "gay" man 20 years ago. I never thought about it much until I started reading and comprehending this issue of unwanted ssa or gayness. So, if I evaluate myself in terms of unwanted ssa or gayness I have to say I had at one time "unwanted" osa (opposite sex attraction). Yes, I said it UNWANTED OSA. I would not want my ex-wife to read this but, I had the worst time of my life (next to dealing with affects of the csa) when I was living with the unwanted osa. I was so relieved to not have to "sleep" with her - opposite person. I was lying to her - ouch (sorry ladies in the F&F group here). Was I abused sexually by my mother or aunt or whomever was female NO. Would abuse by a female since I am male "cause" me to be straight or have unwanted osa? hmmmmm ....

Somethings to ponder but, I am happiest when I "accept" my own being.

I love you all for who you are.

Anyway my $1 worth of input.

Peace,
DJ

_________________________
Live to your fullest potential

Never make someone a priority if your only an option

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#300879 - 08/29/09 01:24 PM Re: SSA or Gay [Re: DJsport]
GentleSoul Offline
Member
MaleSurvivor

Registered: 03/05/07
Posts: 236
Loc: Manhattan
Gents,

Thank you all for your wonderful input. I can understand and relate to your struggles. I kinda agree with Danny with this one. I think labeling is just another form of manipulative propaganda. I believe there is nothing wrong with attraction. I think the main issue here is the shame associated with 'same sex' attraction. Trying to define an attraction as 'same sex' or 'opposite sex'.... Hmmmmm... doesn't that imply a sense of negative connotation to a feeling? Marriage and sex is a beautiful thing; but labeling it a 'mixed' marriage or 'same sex' marriage (to me) dilutes the term a bit. If the shame associated with 'same sex attraction' is eliminated, I wonder how life would be like? Brothers, there is nothing wrong with attraction. Feelings are feelings and it's okay to have them. If you're gay, does it mean it's okay that you can have SSA? Does it mean if you're straight it's socially unacceptable to have SSA? In terms of "unwanted" attention, I think this would fall along the line of accepting something for what it is. I've learned that I can't change the world (ie stop people from having attractions); however, I can change the way I view or react to it/them. To me there's a big difference between gay and SSA. One involves shame and the other doesn't.

Humbly,
Jay

_________________________
I can finally admit I pretend to say and do nice things so people will think I'm a standout guy.

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#300917 - 08/30/09 01:06 AM Re: SSA or Gay [Re: GentleSoul]
AndyS87 Offline


Registered: 12/12/08
Posts: 302
Loc: sorry, but I don't say on the ...
Just my two cents, and I suppose this could be triggering, I feel like we get obsessed with labeling or trying to avoid labeling here. That's perfectly understandable. It's so difficult for us to try and define who we are as people, and society makes sexuality a much bigger deal in America than it is in other parts of the world, as I understand it.

At any rate, if you give the words "gay" or "straight" power to restrict your identity, then yes, they're absolutely labels that you're confining yourself too. But at the same time, don't we also use these labels to convey a point that's much more simple? If I say "I'm gay" then in my mind I'm interested in finding men to spend my life with, emotionally, spiritually, sexually, etc. If I say "I'm straight" then it conveys simply that I'm looking for the above feelings with a woman. If it's made to be restrictive, it becomes a label. Does that make sense? If not, it's just my own view of the issue.


I just turned 22 a few months ago. Since I was 18, and probably much younger, I obsessed about what or who I was into sexually, especially after being abused by my cousin for several years under a very non violent, non threatening, but none the less manipulative guise. When the kid you spend your holidays with playing sega and watching hockey decides he wants you to perform sexual favors on him, or him on you, and everything else you do with him is "fun", then even if it seems wrong, you give in. I think it's funny that I just took that whole last couple of sentences and wrote myself out of them.

Anyways, I was a mess sexually for a long time. All my life from middle school I have wanted a woman or girl or whatever in my life for me to be with so badly, who really understands and loves me and all that good stuff. I enjoy hooking up with women, even though I have terrible approach anxiety and a pretty poor game. I dealt with a lot of psychological trauma from my mother and my sister, so I have a fear of women on some level or another that kinda throws a wrench in things for me. For a long time I was ostracised from my peers, wanting desperately to just be another dude and just fit in and get along with the rest of them. In middle school I definitely sexualized that need for belonging. I never tried to hook up with other dudes, but often times in my mind, I would fantasize sexually about the "popular" guys I was in school with. I wanted to be like them. I did it to kids that bullied me too, because it was my own way of emasculating them in my mind so I could move on with life. Very confusing.

By highschool I had put most of that behind me, but after entering college I began experimenting with gay porn. I feel like, and my therapist agrees, that this was a way for me to contextualize that abuse, and since I was in control by masturbating, try and make sense of it. At first I didn't mind it, but almost a week after I first tried it came the wondering, checking, list making, at levels that are reminiscent of OCD sufferers.


When I finally entered therapy, the more traumas I unwound and let go of, the more these behaviors started to fade, and they stopped hanging around in my head as often. They're nearly completely gone now, but there are two things that still have me, and I know EXACTLY what they are. One is the shame I bear in the fact that I actually went and explored gay porn. This isn't parental or religion based. But in my eyes, compared to my friends and other peers of mine who seek female company, I feel somewhat contaminated now, somewhat less of a man for having checked that way. Because of this, I feel like I can't go out and pursue women and enjoy their company, because of this proverbial skeleton in the closet. In the same way I was trying to control my abuse to lessen it's impact and make sense of it, I often watch or view gay porn to see how I react to it. It doesn't turn me on in all the kinds I've watched, but at the same time, when I even think about checking my body starts shaking and I feel fear instantly, because I know what the mental backlash will be like. It will only lead to obsessive questioning and more checking which will not bring me any answers. Even if it doesn't arouse me, I'll wonder "what if I just wasn't into it" "what if I was just scaring and I need to relax" etc. The simple fact is that it doesn't do it for me, but my anxiety will turn it into an obsession, and there is my insecurity right there. As long as that's on my mind, it makes it tough for me to concentrate on taking my life in the direction I feel it going.


The second is that I hold near impossible standards of perfection for myself in many areas of my life, mainly physical perfection. I was chubby as a kid, and not only my cousin (while I was being molested) but most of the "popular" kids I went to school with were all athletic and all similar types of people. Most had light hair, light eyes, and were in very good physical shape. I'm not in bad shape by any means, and I know this, but because I don't look like an abercrombie and fitch model I obsess about my body fat percentage, how many calories I burn in a workout, what kind of food I'm eating, down to these minute details. When I see kids, mostly younger, say 12 or 13 to about 14 or 15, and even good looking guys my own age who keep themselves in great physical shape, I used to wonder "am I attracted to them sexually?" The answer is no, but in them I see the person I wish I could be, the person who my ideal of who I am is. I am not attracted to them, I am attracted to what they represent to me. I wish I was tall, had 2 percent body fat and perfect muscle definition, and blonde hair. My eyes are already green, but I wish they were greener. Aside from the lack of blue eyes, does that not sound a little aryan? Like I said though, to abuse victims who sexualize these thoughts and feelings in what are to many other people normal reactions, it was confusing. It took me forever to realize that I can recognize other people, other guys specifically, as being good looking without it meaning I have a sexual attraction to them. I'm trying to move past all of that though, and I feel myself breaking free from these things I felt were binding me into effectively going nowhere with my life. Coming here and talking about this tonight has been a great help to me.


Best Wishes,
Andy


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#301107 - 08/31/09 08:01 PM Re: [Re: AndyS87]
Freedom49 Offline
Member
MaleSurvivor

Registered: 12/30/07
Posts: 2723
Loc: Washington State
.




Edited by Freedom49 (05/21/10 06:18 PM)

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#301175 - 09/01/09 11:27 AM Re: SSA or Gay [Re: AndyS87]
GentleSoul Offline
Member
MaleSurvivor

Registered: 03/05/07
Posts: 236
Loc: Manhattan
Andy!

Bravo on such a very poignant and well thought out post! I have to admit that I'm somewhat impressed of your level of introspection for such a tender age of 22! You hit on a very interesting point I have not even considered:

Originally Posted By: AndyS87
When I see kids, mostly younger, say 12 or 13 to about 14 or 15, and even good looking guys my own age who keep themselves in great physical shape, I used to wonder "am I attracted to them sexually?" The answer is no, but in them I see the person I wish I could be, the person who my ideal of who I am is.


For some survivors, I can see how it can be difficult to distinguish between attraction and sex. For example, I am attracted to men who have a healthy inner child, an innocence that I never had as a child. However, it doesn't necessarily mean that the attraction is sexual. Similarly, I can see how someone showing me some interest or attention can be misconstrued as sexual advances. As a matter of fact, I do it all the time. Someone comes up and talks to me and I immediately think they like me physically or sexually. In that sense, are the components of SSA purely physical or sexual or something more subtle like the need for attention or validation?

Thank you for sharing a point of view that was apparently in my blind spot. It's given me a lot to think about.

Humbly,
Jay

_________________________
I can finally admit I pretend to say and do nice things so people will think I'm a standout guy.

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#302012 - 09/07/09 02:35 AM Re: SSA or Gay [Re: GentleSoul]
AndyS87 Offline


Registered: 12/12/08
Posts: 302
Loc: sorry, but I don't say on the ...
well, I think of attraction like this. I am attracted to dunkin donuts muffin's because they're fucking delicious. I'm attracted to sports cars because they're sleek, fast, and fun to drive. None of these are sexual. If you are "attracted" to an individual of the same sex, it could be completely non sexual. You find them funny as hell, they're a good drinking partner, a good wingman, or just a cool person in general, you're going to be attracted to them because you want them to be your friend. It's not a sexual attraction, but because of our pasts it can bemisinterpreted that way, ya dig?


Another word on my last post about having ideals for myself to be perfect. I talked to my shrink and she says trauma victims often feel a need to be as perfect in as many things as they can to compensate for what many perceive as a "weakness". If you're drawn to somebody because they have what you seek, it's not a gay attraction or anything (unless of course you are gay, and find those persons strenghts desirable and all that jazz). It's admiration.


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