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#516196 - 10/14/17 08:38 AM Views on men/women
Tryingtolive Offline


Registered: 02/15/15
Posts: 771
I don’t know where to start or even know where I’m going with this post.
But since a young age I always looked at older men as a guide or role model.
Women I was always shy around
Although I always felt comfortable around women.
I had crushes on girls before.
Maybe even in love with one before.
Never understood love.
Still don’t.
I always felt I needed a bond with a male.
Maybe one I never got with my brother or Dad.
I was abused by my brother.
So from there I believe i was truly confused on what it meant to fit in or get along with males.
I always seeked validation from other males. Or make it seem like I had no flaws.
With women I never felt I could open up to one. Or show my weak side.
I find some women and some men attractive.
So some would consider me bisexual.
Although I’m not really sure about that term.
I don’t know if I’ll ever be sure of my sexuality.
I’ve always second guessed it myself.
For me it feels like a comfort or a fix to do/ have homesexual thoughts.
I’m not proud and even feel disgusted going through with these thoughts and acting on them.
It’s almost like a release. A rush. Then I’m filled with shame and then it slowly fades away.
I Fantasize of other men and that too me is what a homesexual does.
So am I gay ?
But since I was kid I felt it was rooted in me.
This is how men were to act to each other.
Especially secretly.
I’ve fantasized of women too.
But I can’t say it feels right. But it certainly don’t feel wrong ether.
I’ve always seen what had happened to me as just something. Like an act.
A show of love.
A secret.
A bond.
Which I’ve learned was not the case.
It’s very hard telling myself it wasn’t.
So I believe it’s still me trying to chase those acts and feelings with men.
I never had real sex before.
With a female.
And that question and feeling still remains.
Do I want it with females. And the answer is yes.
But women from my perspective don’t want someone like me.
Someone who is unsure of themselves and is scared of just having a relationship.
A male who is scared to be touched?
Who can’t make the first move?
A male who has these homesexual thoughts.
No confidence at all and no women wants that.

The reason I wrote this post is to see what other men that are on here who have similar thoughts.
Am I in denial of my own self.
Trying to figure myself out.
It’s very hard for someone who is so unsure of himself.
I look at women the same as I do males Physically.
But I feel there’s more of an emotional bond I need with other males.( could it be from the abuse)
Females I feel I can fill there needs but they can’t fill mine.(could it be from the abuse?)
Also I haven’t put myself out there for a relationship.
So I don’t know what it’s like to have an emotional bond with another person female or male.
Anxiety alone with just my identity causes a lot of harm for me.
It effects me so deeply that I alienate myself or isolate.(where these thoughts intensify)
I truly wish I can come to terms with who Iam and accept it for what it is.

With men it’s like a fix for me.
With women it’s like soemthing I’ve never known.
Cause I never really been sexual with a women.
I just always felt left out around men. (Weaker or not one of them)
With women it’s like I can’t give out my love. But I want to.
I want love from men.
Like acceptance.
Which from my abuse I learned it could be done that way.
I want love from women.
Like caring and trust.
Which from my abuse I learned to not give that out.

I was sexualized from a male.
But was taught from society to love a women.
Conflicted with two things.
I just feel I can’t be right.
Was it from my abuse that made me this way.
Or society telling me I can’t be this way.

I don’t feel right with being gay or straight.
But being bisexual doesn’t seem right either.

I hope I made sense.



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#516197 - 10/14/17 10:35 AM Re: Views on men/women [Re: Tryingtolive]
Ceremony Online   confused
Greeter

Registered: 09/15/16
Posts: 2117
Loc: Minnesota
Hi Ttl, a lot of this resonates with me at some level. I think I will clarify my experience. I too was sexualized by males. I have felt awkward toward females, but have desired them, in a way that I think is exclusive (I'll have to clarify that in a bit). My body is my biggest block toward female or any intimate relationship, so I am usually fixated on that. I know I can do things to compensate and understand some of having sex with a woman because I've been married to one for so long. We had almost two, very sexual dating years. We've been married 33 years. Not happily. Sex to me, was fear before her. I couldn't imagine anyone wanting me. She did. That was a big part of my bond with her. Finding someone, where I had overcome my fixation of my panic of being the way I am.

I know I'm not very clear about "the way I am", it's to much information and sidetracks this thread.

I am mostly certain I don't have SSA, because I think it would be something I consider when I see a man that I think looks nice? I don't, so, I've concluded, that, though I have pondered gay sex, I've not acted on it, nor thought I desired to act on it. I've tip-toed into that, because I want to segue into that I have had those thoughts and some attraction. My T would say to me "it's Ok to by you"... and I would think, Ok, but who is that? I've somewhat cleared up with my T, that whether I think I'm gay or not, accept it, if I were. That's not an answer by any means, it's an attempt to validate myself toward a direction I might consider.

I am a sensitive man, emotionally, physically and thinker. The things I think about are what straight men give pause and wonder if I would be gay, and would send mix messages to gay men. To me, it's just me, and I hadn't included sex in my thoughts, actions or plans... it's them, not me whose judgement, based on some perceived norms, judge incorrectly. I want to do things without being judged for my sexuality, and decide whom I am going to have sex with, because I love them. I have never wanted hook-ups, I'm not wired for it, I'm very low testosterone, so I don't have the deep urges I know must exist. I have had when I first met my then girlfriend. She woke that in me. But, over time, I'm now mid fifties, I don't and am pretty much settled to that. I'm not impotent, and can and would have sex in any case I deem fits my need.

What is that need? I've been married for 33 years and knew her almost 3 years prior... so, isn't that settled by now? I would think so, but my T saying the things she does, that it's up to me, and that I haven't been an adult, as I see an adult is to be, makes me know I have my own mind to make up as I actually mentally and emotionally mature within therapy and my homework. I see what she's been saying, but it still scares the bejeezes out of me. I'm still in this body, only older.

So, like you, where am I going with this. My encouragement is, like my T goes to, it's up to you, it is that part of you, which gets you comfortable, and feeling happy it's happening. I note that's not going to be the case, with the added physical reactions you're having. I have that if men touch me and I'm not ready. I want hugs from close family and friends, but if I were to be suddenly touched as if it's Ok to be intimate with me, I go into a shock and can't deal with it. I know that's because of the abuse. I am still angry about it, and I can't calm down about it. I can hug, I can try and be a close person to family and friends and have a kind of love that feels intimate to me, but, I'm too tense to be touched by a man. That means to me, I am not likely gay. But, like I said, I still think about it. What it would take, is a very patient and loving man, and it would have to just happen that in what is happening, I am ready. In no way am I in that frame of mind, nor living situation. I am pretty loyal, in that monogamy means a lot to me. Then, I go back to my body, so, who would want me anyway.

I know the truth of what you post about wondering why a woman may be attracted to such a sensitive male, and then to me, I'm afraid she'll more laugh at me about sex, than want it with me. Fear plays a huge role. I have steps in my mind. I have to know them, find that they like me for me, and that we can enjoy each others company, and they then know I'm a sensitive man. The rest can work itself out, but, to even have any of that happen isn't going to happen with my current situation. I'm still married, unhappily... and will remain so for at least the near future. I haven't the means first of all, and second I'm scared out of my mind to be on my own... then completely alone. The norm of my situation... Ok... not now...

I now go back, to what feels best, and that seems like men in your description, but you're wanting to know a woman. That's got to be where this may lead you, with the caveat, how will you work it out with your physical reactions? I only know one way to consider that answer, and it's therapy. The research I've been doing, the homework my T gives me, and our sessions, talking here, and hoping to find a face to face meeting somewhere, all lets me find myself. I've progress, and process now, I can do some work and I don't feel so hopeless as I did when I first started this journey.

I need the guidance of a trauma therapist, she's vital to me. I haven't the emotional capacity to deal with all I fixate. I can compartmentalize, but I sometimes open too many compartments, and I'm overwhelmed. I am trying to do some good things about building up myself. It does mean confidence, but more than that, it means I can process my anxiety and fears better. I will be seemingly more adult about it, less the child I've been stuck in. There are parts of me, of us, our youth. It's complex and I invite you to study it.

Look at my EMDR and Me, where I recently added dissociation. I pour out my thoughts and process as best I can.

I'm just one example and of what works for me. In no way am I stating nor condoning that what I am suggesting is to follow my path as it is for me. It might be similar, but we all have our nuances, and those are important. That's my disclaimer.

I know what you mean by male bond, validation, need to connect. What I don't have, that I can see, is a sexual urge. I'm not convinced I don't have that, but it's a minor detail for me at this point. I think, and I've talked to some women, and read posts here, where there are women who understand this in some men. I think they understand and are patient enough to allow it's a thing. I don't know about patience to allow acting it out, but I know some men do that too. I think, having to live with that as a secret will be harmful, so to me, it's my need to be with one and be satisfied. I would give all my love and attention that way.

I hope this very long post helps, or at least, is Ok to read.

Best wishes.
_________________________
Finding ways to cope with my mind!
The next link is the song "Ceremony", and why I use it.
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ytZ73T9jGFQ
This is the story of my rape, posted on MS:
http://www.discussion.malesurvivor.org/b...1680#Post501680

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#516206 - 10/14/17 02:59 PM Re: Views on men/women [Re: Tryingtolive]
SmartShadow Offline
Member
MaleSurvivor

Registered: 11/27/12
Posts: 447
TTL,
I am 55 and also married to a woman for 30+ years.
Interestingly, your post is something I could have written myself.

I have been wrestling with many of the same thoughts and feelings for 40 years now. Early on, I was able to successfully hide my abuse and conflict from myself. This allowed me to fumble through dating and sex with females when I was in my late teens and early twenties. Eventually I got very involved with a girl who seemed to "get me". Turns out she had been through a lot of fallout with past relationships and I was "Safe". I wasn't aggressive and was likable. But I was very disconnected from my international really. She got pregnant and we got married. But I have always struggled with the same feelings as you are talking about so I thought I would offer some reflection on your post.


Originally Posted By Tryingtolive
I had crushes on girls before.
Maybe even in love with one before.
Never understood love.
Still don’t.

I also had crushes on girls. Love for me is about hormonal bonding that intensifies emotional connection but can also expose insecurities and vulnerabilities so it can feel very scary at the same time. All the talking and trying to understand and be understood in the relationship is the tougher part for me. Relating is not something I do very well with my wife but we both work overtime trying to make it work. We both have a growing list of hurts, fears and disappointments. Sex is something I have gotten used to. It can still be frightening, triggering and confusing at times but for the most part it's relatively easy on me and something I really enjoy at times. Other times, not so much. It's a bit of a double edged sword I find.


Originally Posted By Tryingtolive
I find some women and some men attractive.
So some would consider me bisexual.

I get how confusing this is.
The power of early sexual imprinting and the identity distortion from male to male childhood sexual abuse and trauma is nothing short of a sexual identity lobotomy. I think, for me, this alteration can be mitigated to a point but not completely escaped or undone.


Originally Posted By Tryingtolive
For me it feels like a comfort or a fix to do/ have homesexual thoughts.
I’m not proud and even feel disgusted going through with these thoughts and acting on them.
It’s almost like a release. A rush. Then I’m filled with shame and then it slowly fades away.
I Fantasize of other men and that too me is what a homesexual does.
So am I gay ?

I eventually was able to work through and drop the disgusted feelings and shame. For me, I was reenacting and reworking my sexual imprinting from my abuse. As I allowed myself to accept and be okay with, my fantasies being hijacked by my subconscious mind, trying to work out the sexualization of primary male relationships and secondary abusive dynamics and sexual trauma, I began to grow sexually and emotionally. It's not easy to have your sexual fantasies hijacked and relentlessly forced upon your sexual being. But what happened, happened and it has become a erotic interests and turn on. I have found that relaxing about that and allowing myself to experiment, experience and release has actually helped. I have developed self esteem in this area of my life because it seemed to be something I actually could do for myself. And it has helped. If I qualify as gay because of this then I am gay because I was sexually abused.

I believe the gay term is better reserved for those of us who were gay to begin with. I think I was bisexual to begin with but I think that could even be environmental as well going back to earlier abuse and family dynamics. I really don't care about the labels, if one fits then great. I think what I hear you saying is that none of them feel right. I think that's getting closer to the idea of disorientation not orientation. For me it's like a heavy magnetic force was imprinted in my body and mind by my abusers. If it is true that childhood sexual abuse can't cause somebody to be gay then I am not gay. But I also fit all of the criteria for being gay. I guess I am just as confused as you are. I actually think a sexual orientation can be, but not in all cases, influenced by sexual trauma and abuse. I guess the idea is once you work through all your abuse trauma the abuse imposed magnetic force dissipates and then things become more and more clear and less disorientated.


Originally Posted By Tryingtolive
Do I want it with females. And the answer is yes.
But women from my perspective don’t want someone like me.
Someone who is unsure of themselves and is scared of just having a relationship.
A male who is scared to be touched?
Who can’t make the first move?
A male who has these homesexual thoughts.
No confidence at all and no women wants that.

This is very interesting. I can totally relate, you wouldn't know it looking at my life because I have learned to mitigate and manage these feelings and insecurities. But I can totally relate.


Originally Posted By Tryingtolive
I look at women the same as I do males Physically.
But I feel there’s more of an emotional bond I need with other males.( could it be from the abuse)
Females I feel I can fill there needs but they can’t fill mine.(could it be from the abuse?)

I think I very well could be.
I still experience this at times it used to be very prevalent.
Developing non sexual male friends through this web site has actually helped me get male friendship needs met in health ways.


Originally Posted By Tryingtolive
Also I haven’t put myself out there for a relationship.
So I don’t know what it’s like to have an emotional bond with another person female or male.

I feel for you on this. It takes a lot of trial and error to develop relationship skills. I read a lot of books on how to have good, healthy, functional relationships. I had to figure out what I had to work with and what I had to build from scratch. I still work at it but it gets much easier the more you do it. I have spent the last few years making and improving friendships with other survivors through private message. It's actually a good place to fumble through it. And now my best peer friendships are here on this site. I find that doing this has helped me to heal and helped me to grow.

Thanks again for your post. It has given me a lot to think about.
_________________________
Just because it's complicated doesn't mean we can't figure it out.

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#516221 - 10/14/17 05:57 PM Re: Views on men/women [Re: Tryingtolive]
Chris4TheMill Offline


Registered: 05/16/17
Posts: 416
Loc: NY / NJ Area
TTL,

Very cogent explanation of the many complex issues you are going through. I will say though that these issues are fairly common and I would say they do not mean you are one sexual identity or another. While growing up, our identities are still being formed. As males, we need a strong male figure (like a Dad or older brother) to help guide us and to help build our masculinity and confidence and teach us what it is like to be a man. Many of us did not get that, and it creates huge identity deficits within us. We are left with an emptiness, a mix of insecurities, and a neediness inside, that desperately wants to be filled.

Then when you add sexual abuse to the equation, those needs for healthy masculine bonding become sexualized by the time we hit puberty. So what we think of as a sexual need is really more of an attempt to heal an aching inside of us for something that we never got from males but desperately needed. We feel damaged inside and want to correct that, and we come to believe that "healing" can be found through sexual contact with another male. But it really can't because the issues are within us, related to our core identity, how we see ourselves. No amount of sex, with either gender, will ever be able to heal a damaged core identity. The damaged core identity has to be addressed through means of things like therapy, challenging your self-concepts, building your self-concepts through healthy non-sexual relationships, building confidence in yourself through work or hobbies, and many other means.

One way to reality-check this is realizing that what we needed originally from other males was non-sexual. But now we perceive what we need as sexual. Clearly, some wires got crossed and we are now looking in the wrong place. Yet our brains and emotions tell us to look in that wrong place, because of what they are feeling based on our experiences. What they are really doing is sabotaging us.

The good news is that by working on healing our core identity, we can begin to identity our true needs VS. the perceived, false needs. It takes a lot of time, patience, effort, and help to do this. What worked for me so far might not work for you. But I assure you, I have gotten very far since I began this process.

Also, the inability to show love and receive love from females is also common in this case. Because we tend to feel so alienated from our masculine identity and feel we have nothing to contribute, as well as a lot of shame and insecurity about who we are. It is hard to have something to give or receive when those are our inner realities. That can be improved too, but takes time depending on our experiences and opportunities.

Another reality-check is that you describe your attraction to males as being a "like a fix." That implies it is not really about love, but a desire to fill a sharply-felt neediness. Neediness is not a healthy basis for any kind of relationship, straight or otherwise. If we feel a need for a "fix," that also implies something along the lines of an addictive process. If you look at any literature or books on addiction, they will describe the same things that I described about the core identity issues being the driver of the neediness and emptiness, and of behavior that seeks to momentarily sooth but never really heals.

Lots more to be said, but the thought to leave with is that even if things like shame, unworthiness, feeling un-masculine, etc. have been rooted in us from a young age, they can be uprooted. Any root in the ground can be pulled up - some are much harder than others to pull but none can stay completely stuck there. However we have to be willing to challenge our current self-concepts and call ourselves what we really are even if we don't feel it. If I know God created me to be a man, even if I don't feel it, I can repeat that to myself until I start believing it. That's just one of the many tools in my arsenal that have been helping. This is basically a battle with our own minds and emotions. We can begin to learn how to see truth and start to live out of that, and not just live out of our emotions. That way we can get some distance from them and learn to challenge them when needed. Easier said than done, but it is possible with some work and others who understand how to do this.


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