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#221313 - 04/29/08 08:18 AM 22yr old male. need advice
jayoessh Offline

Registered: 04/29/08
Posts: 3
This is very hard for me to talk about. I have kept this a secret forever and never told anyone. When I was about 9-12 yrs old *I cant remember exact age* I was manipulated into having sex with a male friend. I kinda liked it. I am completely ashamed of this, I felt I was conned into it and robbed of my manhood. I have no desire to act out upon it, I am manly looking and try to act like it. I am sensitive, developed bi-polar, but I was always envious of better looking men than me. I am not attracted to manly looking men but have fantasys about my past. I am disgusted to say that. I recently got dumped by my girlfriend of 2 years and it wrecked me. I had to redefine myself, and I am trying to be like a man. I notice that when the more I have been working out,weight lifting, exercising, the more comfortable i feel. My thoughts were 10x worse when I was self conscious. I have a few male friends but tend to avoid friendships. They are all real good friends though. I am afraid of women, I have been hurt badly and had bad encounters with women I was attracted to. I have felt guilty all my life about my sexual encounter as a child. I also have a phobia of gay men, I am very uncomfortable around them. I think i felt as if they would know my past or be interested in me. I think I had a phobia against everyone, I come from a very masculine family. My dad is a phyical and mental presence,deep voice and all, my brother is a excellent ladies man and I have had a few girls but have a hard time being myself around them or friends with them in that matter. I have a problem of pitching my voice, it is deep sometimes than I will talk in a lighter tone.*I think it has to do with my confidence level* I want to be that powerful strong man my dad was and be normal, but i know its not going to happen. The more I aged the more I realized I was more straight than gay. My gay thoughts are dying down, but I need advice on coping with these thoughts. I Also am afraid of other people seeing through me and seeing my past. I am an above average looking guy, I just dont have the mindset to actively pursue all women that walk this earth. I want one special girl, and disgusted when I think of being with a man. But yet i still feel insecure about myself when I look back, I have told myself I am a little gay and I cant get rid of it but I want a wife, kids and a normal life. This experience was made worse the more pot i smoked and drugs I took. I have been smoking pot for 8 years and have recently quit. I feel different than everyone, and that I am like nobody. I spark good conversation sometimes than other times my thoughts get misguided by my past. I really want to know what everyone thinks, Please any insight onto coping with this would help. This was very hard to do and I have bottled this up for 14 years. I have also noticed a recent loss of sex drive, I am going through alot of stress and still in college moving to another school. I do remember when I first met my girlfriend I was in love with every woman I saw, and had no thoughts about men. Now after my break up I am doubting myself.

Edited by jayoessh (04/29/08 08:29 AM)

#221352 - 04/29/08 01:19 PM Re: 22yr old male. need advice [Re: jayoessh]
EGL Offline
Moderator Emeritus
Registered: 06/19/04
Posts: 7821
Hi Jayoessh, and welcome to the MS site. If you've looked around some, I'm sure you've seen a really supporting, encouraging site. In your post, you said you were manipulated into have sex and that you feel shame about that. The shame part of that is very common among survivors of sexual abuse, because we somehow feel it is our fault. But it is not, and this was not your fault. As you said, you were manipulated into that.

From what I've read, it is common for men to be confused about their sexual orientation early in manhood, particularly so when there is a past of sexual abuse in the mix as well. I've also read that very, very few men are considered 100% gay or 100% heterosexual. Most men have thoughts of gay sexual behaviors, but they may never act on it. Does that make you gay? Certainly not. The same as thinking about trees does not make you a tree.

I may be wrong, but from reading your post it sounds like you have some self esteem issues, particularly with your father and feeling like you don't measure up to his expectations in what you should be. That's a tough one, because I have BIG issues in that area myself with my own father. At some point, though, we have to let his expectations go and be satisfied and proud with what we are.

I appluad you for wanting to be in a monogamous relationship with one woman! And I believe that you will find that person as well.

As to the loss of sex drive, stress can be a major factor there, so I would imagine that your thinking back on the past like this is having an impact in this area. Try not to worry so much about the sex thing, and when it is right and you feel like your stress levels are under control, the sex thing will right itself.

Again, welcome to MS. I hope you find some answers here.


#221359 - 04/29/08 02:01 PM Re: 22yr old male. need advice [Re: jayoessh]
cbfull Offline

Registered: 01/26/07
Posts: 386
Loc: Ohio

Congratulations! You have finally broken free from the toxic secret.

All I can say is, "Wow". There are so many things in your post that I can identify with, there were moments where I thought I was reading one of my own posts.

I don't even know where to begin. I was manipulated by an older neighber into having sex when I was around 10. I kinda liked it too, but it wasn't until more recently that I remember times when I didn't like it all and wanted to stop.

I know the masculinity issues you speak of, and I remember terrible, terrible feelings of inadequacy when I would see other men who were good looking or muscular. I still work out regularly for the very reason you describe. It has always helped me to feel masculine and confident, so don't be afraid to keep at it even if it's just for those reasons. It's good for your health in many ways.

I wish I could tell you not to waste any more time worrying about "straight or gay". Guys feel sexual attractions to other guys more than you know. Most of them are able to block it out, others just don't entertain the idea of exploring it. It varies so widely that it makes asking the question, "Does this make me gay?" a ridiculous waste of time. Gay means "happy" and straight means "not crooked", and that's the end of it. The problem for people like us, is our very natural feelings of attraction to a person of the same-sex have been doused with very dark and frightening emotions because of the abuse.

That feeling you mention of fearing that people can see through you and know things you don't want them to know, is the core of what perpetuates our feelings of shame and guilt. We search for clues that indicate they are "seeing inside us". We always find something that lets us believe that they can, and we are always feeling ashamed, scared, and guilty because of this. The truth of it is, and you can take this to the bank, they have absolutely no idea at all. My bet is that they are confused by our body language and some of our emotions probably transfer to them.

You mention a recent loss of sex drive, and that is very natural in these circumstances. Many of us survivors of abuse become very good at finding ways to dissociate from our feelings, and that applies to our sex drives as well.

Hang in there and don't feel ashamed here. That's what this place is for. Hope to hear from you again soon.



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

#221366 - 04/29/08 02:52 PM Re: 22yr old male. need advice [Re: cbfull]
VLinvictus Offline

Registered: 12/05/07
Posts: 273
Loc: NY
Hi, Jay,

Both EGL and Craig have given you a lot of good feedback. I just want to say too that the first (and hardest) step is sharing your pain with others. Once you let it out, it will lose its power over you and you will grow and be able to master it. Keeping it bottled up inside only lets it control you longer.

If you have not already done so, I think you would really benefit from talking over your feelings with a mental health professional. Sexual abuse can really screw up our feelings and the emotions and and thoughts we associate with certain things. The really intense feelings of self-hatred and disgust your are having about same-sex attraction and fantasies I'm sure are the result of wiring getting crossed (so-to-speak) with your childhood experiences.

The inadequacy feelings that you describe -- not measuring up to your father and being afraid of being inferior physically to other men -- those are as old as the human race and I can totally identify with them. I too grew up believing I could never be "good enough" by whatever standard I might judge myself against and I also feel very inadequate when compared to other men. I go to the gym and people tell me that I'm attractive, but I don't really believe them.

The feeling like everyone can see through you and know your secret is painful, I know, but the best way to conquer it is to talk about it in a safe environment -- like this forum. You only think other people know all things you're ashamed of because you're ashamed of them and afraid of other people knowing. The more you can explore these feelings with supportive people, the more their power over you will decrease.

You can't control what your body and mind is going to respond to. No naturally occuring reaction is disgusting or shameful or wrong. It's OK to find yourself attracted to men just as its OK to find yourself attracted to women. You don't have to act on any of these desires if you don't have to and none of them define the totality of who you are as a person. If you don't want to have sex with men, don't. Just acknowledge the feeling and let it go. You also don't have to have sex with lots of women to compensate.

I hope this site will be helpful for you. Welcome again,


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

#221526 - 04/29/08 10:55 PM Re: 22yr old male. need advice [Re: VLinvictus]
KenJ Offline
New Here

Registered: 04/09/08
Posts: 7
Loc: pennsylvania
I have some of the same issues. My abuser worked used questions about masculinity (I was pre-puberty, he was post) to kind of control things. In some ways parts of my self-image are stuck back then.

I have some attraction to men. I don't know if it is because of the abuse, or whether it is a part of me.


#221554 - 04/30/08 12:21 AM Re: 22yr old male. need advice [Re: KenJ]
jayoessh Offline

Registered: 04/29/08
Posts: 3
Thank you guys, I have felt alone and different for a very long time. I was real hesitant on writing about this, and I am glad I did. I can honestly say that after writing it, and before I got to read your responses* I was starting to feel better. I didnt even mean to but was flirting with a girl at a store lol. I found my attraction to women creeping back again.. it was weird... I think having this bottled up for so long, and letting other people see it really helped me. You guys are great and real supportive, I was reading some of the other posts and decided to give it a shot. I just remember feeling weird, and became mute in large circles, always talking serious to people, not letting myself succeed, became anti social but worst of all, not enjoying myself. I may have wasted a good chunk of my youth dwelling on this, but there was no way I was going to let anyone know. Alot of it started when I went into high school, and especially when I started smoking pot. I have had other issues, like having to throw my dad out of the house with my mom because he was an alcoholic *functional alcoholic and not abusive* Just very self destructive, 3 months later he had a heart attack. I started my pot habit by stealing my dads pot when he would pass out drunk... I became sort of addicted where it escalated to harder drugs. I have had more bad experiences than good it seems like. I have alot of wisdom and common sense but that wisdom applies to other people not myself. I could always help others but never myself. I also focused on other peoples lives more than my own, and ended up talking behind peoples backs and ruined some friendships that way. I think my truest feelings came out when I wrote this..and it felt gooooood. I swear it was one of the best feelings I have experienced*better than all those drugs*. I was super excited to see what you guys would write after working all day, a little nervous as well but much better than I anticipated. It really is nice to know that you are not alone and I wasnt judged horribly or scorned. I can honestly say that I am not cured and not trying to make this seem like I am 100% fixed... but I feel a little better. I think thats a good start. I am completely thankful you guys took the time to reading my post and responding. This was very therapeutic, again I applaud your good nature.


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