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#72124 - 12/11/03 01:46 PM less support
Brayton Offline
Member
MaleSurvivor

Registered: 10/21/03
Posts: 696
Loc: Minneapolis
This is not going to be popular but I want to say that I realize now that for my whole life I have never felt comfortable and safe around gay men.

When I was younger I didn't look or act right to be accepted and now that I am older, I am often too old to be noticeable or paid attention to in that "community."

I really don't like being automatically associated with that "community," people assuming that I am a part of it just because I am out (and loud sometimes) when I get/have gotten so little support and acceptance from it.

Brett

_________________________
Sometimes, things just won't work the way we want them to.

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#72125 - 12/11/03 04:26 PM Re: less support
Mike Church Offline
Moderator Emeritus
MaleSurvivor
Registered: 01/23/03
Posts: 3439
Loc: Toronto, Canada
Brayton my brother I hear your pain.

I myself for so long felt betrayed by the so-called straight community because it was from there that my perps came and also my clients when I was hustling.

I think what is important to me is that I am comfortable in my own skin and who I am. I hate labels. I have been married to the same wonderful woman for 36 plus years and have a beautiful 23 year old daughter and despite that I felt that I did not belong there because of what was done to me and how I reacted as a male prostitute. I cannot say for sure if a gentle man had come into my life when Nicole did that I would not have been happy. I know I am now and am content. Let others live by labels. I try to live as a tolerant person and react to people not by their labels but by their character.

I have truly found a whole bunch of guys who have great characters here and yes who are also GREAT CHARACTERS TO BOOT. I know that because they and you are my brothers.

_________________________
Mikey

IT REALLY IS OK TO STUMBLE. NONE OF US ARE PERFECT.

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#72126 - 12/11/03 06:07 PM Re: less support
MrDon Offline
Member
MaleSurvivor

Registered: 01/08/01
Posts: 957
Loc: Deltona, FL
Brayton,
I don't march to the same drum as most people or groups or various thought processes. I tend to be my own person. Some in the gay community and gay people do think that things operate out of this cookie cutter book. However those things don't work for me and I don't subscribe to them. There are others out there and I think are in greater numbers than we may realize.

Don

_________________________
In order to journey to new worlds, we must first be willing to lose site of the shore.

The Mind Body Thoughts Blog
http://mindbodythoughts.blogspot.com/

Check out my relaxing piano music from the heart!
http://www.donshetterly.com

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#72127 - 12/12/03 01:16 AM Re: less support
abcd Offline
Member

Registered: 10/20/00
Posts: 189
Loc: GA
I'm sorry to hear. I don't know what to say, except that who's to say who belongs in which community anyway? I will say that for me (new to coming out), it's the opposite. I feel uncomfortable in conservative straight circles. I did not used to feel that way, but now I do because of similar reasons as you--about acceptance (although much of it is really just my issues I suppose of fearing what others will think). I dunno if that made sense...I just wanted to empathize.

Just as a thought though, if part of your issue has to do with age--at least now (I'm not sure I fully understand your comment--so if I'm off ignore this)...that goes all ways--hetero or homosexual. It's just a matter of being in the right crowd I suppose. There are "scenes" with people of all ages, and just as in the straight world, you will have 20 yo girls that won't look at 40 yo men and 20 yo men that won't look at 40 yo women. This is not to say these are unfounded, etc. (as gays on average allow for more age and race diversity in relations), but just an observation to note that perhaps a way to resolve some issues is to seek out other scenes.

Yes, the stereotyped scene/community may be a bit younger, but who cares? Who is to say that THAT is the scene? When I reach 80 yo, my gay community will be those in their 80's--who cares if some 20 yo doesn't pay attention to me?

While I agree that the stereotyped gay community is a bit on the pretentious side, I say--hey, find your own. There's a lot of "genuine" people out there who WILL welcome you. Just don't give up. Aight...my two cents.


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#72128 - 12/12/03 12:13 PM Re: less support
Brayton Offline
Member
MaleSurvivor

Registered: 10/21/03
Posts: 696
Loc: Minneapolis
Thanks abcd.

I am pretty much aware that at the core of all my feelings about this is my self-loathing.

I have felt estranged from other gay men because of this and the pressure not to admit it or certainly not to talk about it.

And then, of course, I cannot talk to them about the abuse which is key to understanding the self-loathing, etc.

Only here can I begin to 'come out' with these feelings. But then this place (Gay Survivors) still does not feel safe and supportive. I feel generally and excepting a few guys that I get more support from straight guys.

Brett

_________________________
Sometimes, things just won't work the way we want them to.

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#72129 - 12/12/03 02:51 PM Re: less support
Future Counselor Offline
Junior Member

Registered: 12/02/03
Posts: 3
Brett,

I hope you don't mind a reply from me. I'm not a professional, nor am I going to pretend I know exactly what you're going through, but I sensed you could use an "ear."

I'm not sure why members of the gay community are less supportive. Maybe some people just aren't ready to acknowledge that they've shared the same frustrations? It's much easier for some people to think about all the ways we're different from other people than all of the ways we're alike...

I apologize for the cliche in advance, but just be yourself. You are more than your sexual orientation and I and other people here care about you regardless.

I can't know what this is like for you and I would never try to invalidate what you're feeling right now, but people do care and they know you are not to blame for your abuse.

~Lori


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#72130 - 12/12/03 07:02 PM Re: less support
Dale English Offline
Newsletter Founder/Producer
MaleSurvivor
Registered: 06/08/03
Posts: 448
Loc: PA
Hi Brett,

I hear you loud and clear, couldn't agree with you more and want to try to do something about it.

I'm a gay man, a gay dad and I'm here. I'm sure there are as many reasons for the distance we feel from our "community" as there are gay people in it. Every one of us has had it rough just by the fact that we are gay and told in every way, every day that we are less than others because of who we fall in love with. I think sometimes some of us get a bit more self-centered because we often feel like we're in this alone, no one is really going to help us and to make it we have to learn how to take care of ourselves, alone! And then there's the SA from another man perhaps and the confused feelings of attraction and distrust all at the same time.

There's so much to this..and I can't solve that. But I can promise to sit with you while you unravel all the tangled yarn that may be your life right now. I hope that other gay brothers and sisters can come forward and be open to you in whatever way we might be able to help. If nothing else, just for you to know we're here!

The next move is yours....keep writing.

Taz


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#72131 - 12/13/03 01:36 AM Re: less support
brian-z Offline
Member

Registered: 07/11/02
Posts: 770
Loc: Western USA
Hi Brett,

I get really sick of the ďcommunityĒ as well, I wish some of them would just shut up. But in my own life Iím kind of on the other side of the coin. I donít have much use for straight people most of the time. 18 months ago I was just the opposite, but a year and a half later Iím here Iím queer and Iím ok with it. And Iím ok with the world, itís going to judge me no matter what stereotypes I try to conform to.

Iím really sorry your sisters arenít showing you the love. And I wish I could teach those queens a lesson about the importance of sticking together and about our history. But I canít.

I admire you for your honesty and courage you have shown to stand up and say what you think needs to be said. Even if it may not be popular with some people. You have my respect, and I hope that others will be inspired by your forthright approach in addressing this issue.

KOODOSE!!!

Brian.


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#72132 - 12/13/03 10:43 AM Re: less support
abcd Offline
Member

Registered: 10/20/00
Posts: 189
Loc: GA
Brayton,

Hmm...well, I guess it's good that you're able to identify your prob, and I'm glad that you still choose to reach out.

Just for my clarification though (sorry, it's early in them morning), I presume that you are saying that your self-loathing (i.e. hating yourself--because you're gay or perhaps the abuse?) is what causes you to be uncomfortable with the so-called "gay community" (whoever that would be). Additionally, you are saying that you do not feel comfortable talking about your abuse with this "gay community." In addition, you have generally found more support from the "straight community" than the gay one.

Hmmm...assuming that most of these are correct. Just a few questions to maybe ask yourself:

1) Do you feel like you've separated the abuse and gay issues (i.e. their unrelatedness)? I say this because this was a big hang up for me which caused "me" to freeze up and to just get overwhelmed. As soon as I separated them, I was able to fully embrace my sexuality (stopping a sort of "self-loathing" I suppose), especially combined with support from a religious community of their acceptance of my monogamous, long-term relationship kinda lifestyle.

2) Do you feel as though you have enough gay friends in "real life" (i.e. outside say internet, etc.,). The reason I say this is that this too is a big hang up for me. Right now, I'm still very uncomfortable with "coming out" and so do not hang out in gay circles outside of when I am with my partner and his family/friends. In fact, I have little to no friends in the "gay community" who I found on my own and who I see regularly. Most of my friends are straight. Thus, it may be natural for me to say that that my straight friends are so supportive when in fact it is because I do not know of enough gay people who are truly representative of the community (and by this I mean "know" gays/be friends with them rather than just acquaintances at bars, etc.,). I know it may be a stupid analogy, but it's kinda like the whole overgeneralization thing driving us to then fear of a "group" of people. (perhaps, just perhaps)

Now, do not misunderstand...this goes both ways. For me, personally...(despite my straight friends' consistently welcoming reaction), I'm still very scared of the straight reaction to this stuff, and am hardly out (I pretty much just leaked some info and got people to talk). In fact, of late, I've detached myself from some straight friends (though am reinforcing other straight friendships with whom this homosexuality thing is okay for sure). I know that's not a good thing, but I've got a lot of my plate right now. I will work on those stuff soon...

Anyway, I guess, I'm saying don't be so hard on yourself. I personally envy your comfort factor with the straight community--and think that to be the bigger hurdle (than to have the comfort factor with gay guys). Despite your discomfort with being gay and having been abused, you at least have the courage to speak openly about it to your straight friends. Your half-way there I guess--all you have to do now is separate the abuse and gayness so that you may perhaps open yourself up to the gay community (including about the abuse--in fact, you may be surprised to hear how many gays have known people who have been abused). Indeed, the gay community, from my experience, IS welcoming and friendly. In fact, they can be overly community/group-oriented because of an inherent feeling of still being marginalized. Yes, there are exceptions, and plenty of them, I'm sure...but just is with any other "community" that is small and marginalized, you may have to go digging past the egos, the self-defense mechanisms, their own hurts, their own distrusts, to finally find that "perfect" niche for you.

AIght...I'm rambling...I should go...but hope you can make some sense out of it. Later.


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#72133 - 12/16/03 11:23 AM Re: less support
Brayton Offline
Member
MaleSurvivor

Registered: 10/21/03
Posts: 696
Loc: Minneapolis
I am not sure I have any sexuality outside the context of the SA. So I guess I haven't separated them. The SA occurred when I was a little kid and all S relationships later were dominated by those experiences, desires to relive portions of them, as sick as that is. All S fantasies the same also.

I guess I don't really feel very comfortable around anyone. No wonder. I talk about the SA here and with my therapists. Try it a little with my partner but that's uncomfortable.

Difficult to reach out to other men other than secretively as my partner is wary, to put it nicely, about me interacting with other guys, straight or not, on Internet or in person. So reaching out is a little difficult even if I can get away from my general discomfort with people.

Those days in which memories come to me or I wake in the midst of a disturbing dream, such as this morning, are terrible. Sort of consumed with unfocused anger.

Brett

_________________________
Sometimes, things just won't work the way we want them to.

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#72134 - 12/16/03 04:49 PM Re: less support
crisispoint Offline
Member
MaleSurvivor

Registered: 09/24/03
Posts: 2154
Loc: Massachusetts
Brett,

I understand you. I'm struggling with sexuality and, frankly, I've never been comfortable with any community that picks something so insignificant (or it damn well should be!) as sexuality. I know that's not very PC, but why should we broadcast who we choose to love unless it's very obvious (like when you're out for a romantic evening with a date or your spouse)? On the other hand? Why should we have to hide who we are? Once again, X-Men 2 said it best, through Mystique, when she was asked why she didn't hide her obvious mutancy: "we shoudln't have to."

My own take on the whole lack of support from the gay male community (and this, too, may be un-PC) is the same hang-up straight men have: we don't get raped. We don't get abused. We are afraid that such experiences "make" us gay and "make" us victimize others.

Which, by the way, is utter b******t!

There's also an inherent thing that gay males who do have underage (not necessarily children) sex partners are afraid of being labelled as sex offenders (which they technically and legally are, but I digress). This is the type of mentality that makes NAMBLA still acceptable in some gay circles.

This, too, is utter b******t!

Ah, I wish it were so easy to say, "okay, we'll all accept, support, and comfort rape/sexual abuse survivors now!" Sadly, it isn't. It's enough, I hope, that we know what we've done and can find friends, partners, spouses, who accept us, help us, and love us.

Isn't that what we all aim for, gay or straight?

Peace and love, my brothers. Thanks for letting me ramble.

Scot

_________________________
There are reasons I'm taking medication. They're called "other people." - Me, displaying my anti-social tendancies

fromacuriousmind.blogspot.com
malehurtandsurvive.blogspot.com

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#72135 - 12/17/03 01:21 PM Re: less support
Brayton Offline
Member
MaleSurvivor

Registered: 10/21/03
Posts: 696
Loc: Minneapolis
I know that because of the CSA or rather its effects, I was not able to integrate (for want of a better word) with the gay "community."

Stonewall happened when I was a teenager. It is ironic how closely our "community's" sexual liberation coincided with what would normally be my sexual maturity.

Because of the CSA, however, I was not able to be sexual with other boys or men. And I did not have the self confidence necessary to set myself on another path.

Instead, I struggled with chronic depression and became an alcoholic.

The CSA perps and the physical and emotional abuse perps took a great deal from me.

Now, after all these years, even if I find some sort of recovery from the CSA, I will never recover time and become the sort of member of that "community" that I might have envisioned as a young man.

I will always be different in the world, I think, finding little commonality in the world except in places like MaleSurvivor.

This is more of a community for me than the gay "community" was or will be and this community is, I believe, made up mostly of straight men. They have more understanding of me than gay men who, although they may have experienced CSA themselves, are not dealing with it in a context like this.

Brett

_________________________
Sometimes, things just won't work the way we want them to.

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