I'm sorry that you are in so much pain. I have felt that also for quite a while. So I wanted to tell you thanks for the subject. If you don't mind, I'd like to share a little of my experience, hoping that it might help and comfort you.
I am a gay man. I was firat sexually abused by a male caregiver from age 15-22. There were other incidents later, but he was the first. He was 55.
I never told anyone about it, until I was 40.
I dated women and then finally got the courage to seek what I wanted which was intimacy with a man.
I have never had any doubts abut my sexual orientation; though I had a lot of difficulty accepting and expressing it. I remember at a very young age, 3 or 4, having fantasies of men (non-sexual).
However, because of the sexual exploitation and the secrets I hid, I continue to have sexual difficulties to this day. Such as being honest in sexual situations. I tend to automatically go into some sort of performance role--seeking to please the other party--instead of expressing my love and attraction. I have never explored my own sexual feelings, but continue instead to repeat behavior that leaves me unhappy and dissatisfied. It really sucks--and not in a good way!
With my therapist, I'm beginning to see how I associate all the negatives about my abuse with being gay----which is really bad since I am gay.
Also, of course, I know intellectually that the abuser was not gay--he hated gay menj--he was a pederast, a pedophile, a criminal, mentally and emotionally sick.
With that type of association, it's easy to end up with a lot self loathing, and self hatred. None of those make a good partner for anyone, hetereo or homo sexual. And I have the scars to prove it!! It doesn't seem possible for me to "think" my way out of these self defeating attitudes.
But I'm working my way out of it, I hope.
Recently, my T asked me to write a list,
"What is wrong with gay men?"
I had no trouble at all relating how it seemed that a gay man would do anything to anyone to have sex; that they lie, and keep secrets; that they cannot be trusted; are manipulative; superficial and only interested in casual sex, drinking and drugs; that they are unclean and carry diseases; and it's just generally not a good way to be.
After I wrote this list, I examined it again from the view point of what the abuser had done to me. Those were all the feelings I had about what had happened.
I looked again and saw that it also expressed many of the negative feelings I have toward myself and my sexual life (if I had one!). I had a lot of stuff mixed up and still do. It's not easy to get rid of those old attitudes.
Here's some of what has helped me. I joined a gay mens therapy group--there are about 7 of us.
I have gotten to know close up gay men who love their children, who would never ever harm anyone sexually, who are sensitive, kind and good citizens. I love these guys and they have loved and supported me----all in a non-sexual, very safe environment. Our group leader therapist is gay.
I went to a therapist to work specifically on how my CSA affects my attitude toward my own homosexuality. It has been amazing. I've been in therapy for about 5 years, but this year was the first I've ever had specifically about this subject with a gay male therapist.
And it seems to be helping dramatically.
My faith community does not accept homosexuality.
I quit going around there. I did not quit believing in the spiritual principles, but simply do not expose myself to that negative reinforcement.
I treat myself as worthy, loveable and in need of love and tenderness. That helps me a lot, though not always easy to do.
I feel less hatred today for myself and others.
I have hope that I may have an intimate relationship with a man that is healthy and healing. I love men and I miss the warmth and strength that I feel from them.
But I couldn't solve the sexual problems without first addressing specifically the abuse with professional help and a patient and loving support group.
So, buddy, you're in the right place and you're asking the right questions. My experience is that as I focus on repairing the damage of the SA, the other parts of my life don't seem nearly as daunting. It's astonishing how much energy and life the effects of sexual abuse rob from us.
I'm taking mine back so I can stop allowing the abuse free rent in my head. It's not easy, I'm pretty new at it. I'm lonely, scared and feel like crying a lot.
Sounds like I'm in the right place too, huh?
You are doing exactly the next right thing for yourself. Keep up the courageous work and the other stuff will follow. You have our support and our love.
Your brother and fellow member,
"Poke salad Annie, 'gators got you granny
Everybody said it was a shame
'Cause her mama was aworkin' on the chain-gang"
-Tony Joe White