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#25532 - 11/11/00 11:25 AM talking about it
spiderman Offline
Junior Member

Registered: 11/11/00
Posts: 1
Hello. I have read some of the stories on this and similar pages, and feel the urge to tell my own story. I have never told anyone before, even though I now am 31, and this happened when I was 19. It changed my life for sure, even though it was a single incident. My method of coping has been similar to many of yours; I was too embarrased to tell anybody, and I sort of managed through the day anyway, although I slowly drifted into a loner/outsider position from which I am only slowly beginning to break loose.

I had just moved to a new, big city. One friday night as I was walking home from town, I was approached by a man 10 years my senior. I was quite drunk and can only remember bits and pieces of it all. He asked me to join him for a joint in his flat, which I accepted. At his place, I slowly understood that he had interests in the male sexual department, which I never had had. The next thing I remember is sitting on his sofa, while he is sucking my penis. I may have dozed off, and then he made his move, or I may have been awake all along, I donīt know. Smoking a joint did not in any case clear my drunken mind. I remember sensing in a kind of haze what was going on, and the next thing I know we were in bed together. One thing is for sure, my sober self would have run for his life. My drunk self didnīt (thatīs part of the reason for the embarassment I have always felt, why did I go along?). Anyway, I have a clear recollection of him exciting me sexually and me thinking, as I put his penis in my mouth "Well, thereīs gotta be a first time for everything", or some such thing. When he turned me over on my stomach and tried to enter from behind, my daze lifted, I got to my feet, got my clothes, and ran. I remember him standing (naked) in the doorway, asking me "Did you know that you were gay?". That question throbbed in my mind as I awoke next morning - to a new and surreal world. I had had sex with a man. Who was I? One thingīs for sure, before it happened I was your ordinary happy-go-lucky teenager, with women as my sole object of desire. Now I felt ashamed and alone. I resigned my job shortly afterwards, began drinking to the point of blackouts each weekend, something I did for the next two years. I started to hang out with drunks, I kept to myself. Each morning I hoped to wake up realizing it all had been a bad dream. Part of the reason for this was that I could no longer view a male body "neutrally", as I did before, it was becoming clear to me that the incident had - somewhere in my brain - implanted a connection between the sight of a male sexual organ an me feeling aroused. I remember buying beers, sitting in graveyards in the middle of the day, looking at gravestones, thinking you lucky bastards.

Social anxiety ensued. The word gay, when turning up in a conversation, made me shiver. I felt like a spy with a terrible secret, I lost connection with my old friends, I could only relate properly when I was drunk.

Somehow, I have coped along the years. I have a few friends now, and a girlfriend. They know nothing about this. My problem is, should I tell them? What if they donīt understand. I mean, I myself donīt really understand my own feelings after all these years. I am afraid to lift the lid, yet I recognize that going on like I do (although my day-to-day life has somehow "found itīs pattern" and improved over the years) is hazardous to my emotional life. Itīs like a wall of glass somewhere, a guard that never gets relaxed - emotionally or intellectually. What shall I do? "Come out" as a bisexual, even though my heart is not in the gay thing (men hold no romantic fascination for me)? Wouldnīt I risk alienation from my girlfriend and friends? Keep my secret, and risk emotional damage? The thing is, I really canīt afford a therapist, itīs barely that I can pay my rent, working free-lance and not getting too many jobs.

Anyway, itīs been nice talking to you all. Websites like this should have been around 12 years ago, maybe things would have been different for me then. Good luck to all of you, many whom I see is in a much bigger predicament than myself.

#25533 - 11/11/00 12:12 PM Re: talking about it
Richard Gartner, PhD Offline
Past President

Registered: 09/20/00
Posts: 404
Loc: New York, NY, USA
Dear Spiderman: I am sorry that you have tortured yourself like this for so many years. You've confused the natural physiological response of your penis to stimulation -- something that usually happens when the penis is stimulated, no matter what the source -- with desire for men. I'm sure you "know" this, since you are clear that you have no desire for men, yet your shame and guilt have prevented you from coming to terms with this experience and moving on. Since you have no funds for treatment, I suggest that you contact the rape intervention program of a hospital in your area (yes, what you describe is rape). They will most likely be able to offer you free or very low-cost short-term treatment.

Once you feel more in charge of this experience, it might well be a good idea to talk about it to the people you are most intimate with. Otherwise, you will continue to believe that they would reject you if they "really" knew you. If they are the kind of people who would do this, then you are well rid of hem.

I'm glad you decided to share your story.



#25534 - 11/11/00 03:54 PM Re: talking about it
abcd Offline

Registered: 10/20/00
Posts: 189
Loc: GA
I don't know what to say man, except thanks for telling your story. We're all thinking of you. It's hard for me to say it perhaps without feeling hypocritical, but I agree...talking to professionals would be the best way to go. If you don't feel that comfortable about it, then I would really try to look within yourself, your heart, your conscience, your soul...Me, I talk it out sometimes to find out what exactly is it that I feel. You have to let it all out to yourself (at least I think) so that when you decide to open up to loved ones, you know exactly where you stand. Look at it from a whole-life perspective too...sometimes I fall easily into a trap of defining my identity by what I felt about myself at THAT moment after what happened just that week, month, or even year. I know I'm a few years younger than you, so take what I say with a grain of salt. I know how you feel 'cuz I've been dealing with this for about 12 years now. Anyway, I hope all is well. Later.

#25535 - 11/12/00 12:36 AM Re: talking about it
livingwithit Offline
Junior Member

Registered: 11/08/00
Posts: 21
spiderman, from a woman's perspective, rape is rape. My husband was raped. My first husband had an expierence so very simalar to yours he never talked about it. Even when I gently questioned him about it. He turned it into a self loathing, and drank himself into oblivion for years. I only wish he had trusted me enough to let me help him with it, we would still be married today. Good luck and remember rape is rape no matter the genders involved. Jenni

#25536 - 11/12/00 02:28 AM Re: talking about it
bubbabobobbrain Offline
Junior Member

Registered: 10/30/00
Posts: 5
Loc: Lodi, N.J. USA
dear spiderman,
I am sorry to hear your story, as I am sorry that it happened to you and all these others. I hate to say it but I have become somewhat of an expert on male rape. My girlfriend has helped me a great deal and a good place to start is to contact the rape crisis center in your area or you can call 1-800-656-HOPE, the Rape, Abuse, and Incest Nat'l Network (RAINN). Most Centers will either provide onsite counseling or will help with the cost or pay completely. Good luck.

#25537 - 11/12/00 09:20 AM Re: talking about it
Neil Offline

Registered: 10/17/00
Posts: 81
Loc: Millersville, MD, USA
Spiderman, Thank you for sharing your story. That's the first step. I too struggled with my sexuality for many years. I felt the same as you. What if I told and the people close to me didn't understand? What if they blamed me? I blamed myself so how could I expect anyone to view it differently. When I began my recovery I finally realized that those feelings were abuse related. I didn't have an attraction to men but still felt like I must be bi because of what had happened to me.(see my story under "Our Stories") Almost all my male/male thoughts involved my abuser. I think maybe the key for you is to look at how you were before the rape/abuse occured. Since there were none of those thoughts before that happened to you then I would think those feelings are also abuse related. The other replys are right. You were raped. That doesn't make you gay or bi. That makes you a rape/abuse victim. I'm not telling you that you aren't gay/bi, I'm just saying that the event didn't make you that way. I hope you can understand that. Seeking therapy was the best move I made. I couldn't have worked through all these feelings alone. It's tough enough with the help of a therapist but at least there is someone there to guide you through it. You might be surprised how supportive the people close to you will be if you tell them. I would suggest though that you try and understand your feelings a little better before you tell them. The more you understand, the easier it will be to explain. Therapy can help you with that. I've been very lucky in that my wife and children have been very supportive to me. It's an ongoing learning experience for all of us. If you read, try the book "Victims No Longer" by Mike Lew. That book helped me a great deal in understanding my abuse related thoughts and actions. Good luck. I'm pulling for you!

#25538 - 11/13/00 04:34 AM Re: talking about it
chichi Offline
Junior Member

Registered: 11/09/00
Posts: 7
Loc: canada
Spiderman, sorry to hear about your decade + of difficulties.
I think I may have been abused as a child myself, but I am also a fully grown gay man today. I must say straight off that sexual abuse may cause gender confusion, sexual dysfunction and even doubts over sexuality,but it does NOT DETERMINE ONE'S ORIENTATION.The 'experts' all tend to agree on this, so trust them if your hurting over your past, it might help.
That being said, I read you story through several times and I admit I am confused.So here goes....
While it is clear you have experienced most of the feelings and effects of a rape victim, the act you describe doesn't sound like a rape to me.
You were 19 & a bit high.You found yourself in an awkward position with an older adult. You did not object, but you did leave (absolutely the right thing to do) . Is it possible you were a little too high and your judgement was impaired? A youthful indiscretion?
Can you really say that if you were 29, high and horny, that you wouldn't proposition a young (but adult)woman? And then seduce her?
If she dressed quickly and left, you might kick yourself for going to far, but rape?
Perhaps the real conflict exists not in what was done to you, but who (namely an older man) did it.To some of us, gay sex is a wonderfull thing.The trouble comes when our behavior is judged by our communities, and we feel so much shame that we begin to self destruct.
YOU HAVE NOTHING TO BE ASHAMED OF-you are not gay, you just made a mistake. However, neither does the older man in your story. He was gay and you were an adult male who he tried to seduce. There should be no shame here, there's too much already.

#25539 - 06/18/01 03:19 PM Re: talking about it


Thank you for your story, it has sparked a ray of hope in my own life.

When I was around 8 or 9 a friend invited me to sleep over his house. Among other things he start rubbing himself against me. I really identified with your comment of waking up to a surreal world and the part of untentionally being aroused by men's body parts.

I have suffered a ton looking back at my life and thinking I fit into the Gay sterotype of being aroused, though not very often by men. I even tried to kill myself once.

I hope more people will tell their stories to make this connection between being taken advantaged of and the effects it has on the mind even 12 years after it happened. I still suffer today however it's truthful stories like yours that inspire me to keep on living for the future.

#25540 - 06/18/01 08:44 PM Re: talking about it

I want to say thankyou for sharing.
The fact that what happened to you was upsetting and disruptive is helpful to me in sorting out my own painful feelings.
I grew up in a very sexual family. Two of my brothers exposed me to their sexual desires when I was a boy. They were both "gentle" and I have always had a hard time convincing myself that what occurred couldn't fall under the "normal experimentation amongst siblings" category.
When I was 10 or so, while on vacation in Hawaii, an older man in his twenties invited me up to his apartment saying that he had really cool video games I could play for free. He offered me liquor and asked if I wanted to touch him. He kissed me and I shot up and excused myself and ran back to my parents' hotel. I didn't tell anyone for 15 years. That was only one of many instances where I have been propositioned and my family was not aware or helpful in protecting me.
When I went to college, I chose to live with a gay man knowing that he wanted to have sex with me. I used him so that my parents wouldn't have to pay rent for me and I wouldn't have to get a job. I used to say, "whatever doesn't kill me makes me stronger".
I pretended to be gay for almost two years off and on when it was useful to me. I found so much acceptance and kindness in the gay community - not too mention a familiar landscape where older men would act sexually with me. Throughout those two years, I always dated women and that was what I really focused on.
When my roomate wanted to sleep with me, he would rent porn videos, we would get high, we would do "poppers" and then we would find a way to make each other come.
I spent many nights curled up in the shower trying to feel clean, but I hid that side so that I wouldn't have to pay rent and I could feel the admiration and love coming from this man and his gay associates. I could never kiss him.
He had power and knowledge and was 10 years older and 100 pounds heavier.
There were other times too when I said yes when I wanted to say no. It always seemed easier to not cause any trouble or dissapoint. A part of me romanticized the events, turning me into a heroic figure who could do anything.
It wasn't until I met my wife that I began to realize how deeply hurt I was and am.
I was terrified that I might have a son - because I was afraid that I wouldn't know how to set appropriate boundaries. ( so far so good [I don't worry about that anymore - thank God])
Men with Men is strangely seductive and some of us are trained by our early experiences to make the most of it. It has taken me 25 years to learn to say no every time.
A book that helped me cement my will against letting my boundaries down and seeing the truth was "people of the lie" by F. Scott Peck. That book helped me to realize that what my parents say has nothing to do with the quality of the care they provided me as a child.
They left me and my sister unsupervised while they drank and had parties. As a result, my sister was incested/-gently?raped by her two brothers and I was incested/even-gentlier?raped by my two brothers.
My sister is 2 years older than I and my brothers are 5 and 10 years older than I.
I am babbling. I could write a book.
Daily I am out of control - twitching to masturbate, I treat women as sexual objects - I am very disturbed. As I write this I am threatened by the thought that a gay man would interpret my words as proof that I am gay. I am certain I am not. I could have fucked a donkey for rent if it meant pleasing my parents and gaining admiration from my community. My whole childhood I was an outcast. For years, I never had a friend that didn't steal from me, beat me up, or spit on me. I have always been a specialist at accepting abuse of one kind or another.

Now I am ashamed that I used other people and mislead them by having sex/being sexual when I only wanted their love. My roomate cared for me deeply. If I hadn't been incested, we might have been close friends.

What hurts sometimes the most is how wicked I have been and can be. I am able to completely dissasociate. I could be a serial killer. ( except I know right and wrong and the guilt of what I have done and the pain of what I have suffered is all too real to me. )

I want to live in a good world where evil is banished.

Thanks again,
I must stop now.
"God, grant me the serenity to accept the things I cannot change, the courage to change the things I can, and the wisdom to know the difference."



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