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#71609 - 02/11/03 03:36 AM Thank you!!!
hanginon Offline

Registered: 01/25/03
Posts: 89
Loc: sarasota, fl
I have found so much support in the responses to my postings on this board and want to tell everyone thank you for being there.

I am interested in attending the April workshop in Illinois (my home state and very close to my home town), but am concerned that the majority of attendees will not be gay-tolerant. Any ideas from the group?

Please know that although I am making some progress in dealing with my recent separation, I am still very much in love with my ex-partner and want to work hard to try and get back together. There are many issues that both of us have to work on individually (he still lives with his mother and she has reportedly said things about MY making him "gay," for one) but in my heart I believe that we are meant to be together.

At any rate, please keep sending messages telling me more about your past experiences, it is very helpful.

Thank you again!

walker, there is no path, you make a path as you go...

(caminante, no hay camino, se hace camino al andar...)

Antonio Machado

#71610 - 02/11/03 05:41 AM Re: Thank you!!!
Don-NY Offline

Registered: 08/06/02
Posts: 546
Loc: Long Island, NY

Your thanks are much appreciated. And thank you for being here for us.

I attended the retreat in September, and I can assure you that tolerance, safety, and support are so complete that they just don't enter your consciousness. They are just there.

This simply isn't an issue. In fact, the positive feelings in this regard are still with me, and really made a difference in the way I look at and relate to people.

One of the first things that occurs is a group meeting where everyone can express exactly what they need to feel safe during the weekend. These needs ranged from not wanting to hear any cursing or other hurtful language to asking that no one walk around without a shirt, or touch anyone without asking permission first.

Every one was written down, accepted, and respected the entire time.

I'm putting a link to what I and a few other guys wrote about the retreat a week or so after.;f=1;t=001082#000000

I recommend these experiences highly to all survivors when they are ready for them.


If you understand everything, some things are just as they are. If you understand nothing, things are still just as they are.

#71611 - 02/11/03 08:17 AM Re: Thank you!!!
rax Offline

Registered: 12/02/00
Posts: 75
Loc: Newark, CA
Hi John,

I went for a retreat last March/April, and it was a great experience.
You dont have to worry about being gay. You will be surprised(or not) that the percentage of gay men at the retreat is far more than the norm(10 percent?)

Its a great experience to have among good people.


#71612 - 02/11/03 04:05 PM Re: Thank you!!!
Mike Church Offline
Moderator Emeritus
Registered: 01/23/03
Posts: 3439
Loc: Toronto, Canada
The only labels that are important are
1. I am a human and have worth
2. I am a survivor and wil recover.
And that my brother is all there is. We know where we have been and where we want to go. By and large most of us have no hangups. There are those unfortunates among every group in society that are not this way and personally my brother i ignore them and really have nothing to do with them. It matters not to me what a persons religion, colour, social upbringing or sexual preferences are. What matters is CAN I RELATE and Can WE HELP EACH OTHER AND CAN WE BE FRIENDS AND SHARE OUR HOPES AND ASPIRATIONS. TO ME THAT IS THE IDEAL HUMAN CONDITION.
We all need to love and share and thank god for that. You can no more change your preferences than I can and WHY SHOULD WE. We need love and companionship. You Hanginon are my brother in healing
Mike Church(Happily married to a wonderful woman)
God I wish I knew now to make those interesting little things that Waumei puts in his posts or thesem faces. Just dumb I gess.



#71613 - 02/11/03 06:53 PM Re: Thank you!!!
guy43 Offline

Registered: 11/17/02
Posts: 450
Loc: Minnesota
Back in the early 90's I went to several retreats for male survivors of sexual abuse. I'm guessing the percentage of gay vs. straight was about 50-50 with about 40 men at each retreat. I didn't hear of or witness intolerance about anything, especially toward orientation. I've no doubt any attempts of attacking/bashing would have been addressed immediately and openly and not just by the retreat leaders.

I believe you'll be in as safe an environment as can be made by a group of human beings for this kind of work. In Don-NY's link he mentions ground rules that were set up at the start of the MS retreat he attended last year, the retreats I attended had very similar rules.

All in all, I found them to be a safe environment to share and be open with other men, as difficult as that can be for me.


#71614 - 02/11/03 10:45 PM Re: Thank you!!!
The Dean Offline
Moderator Emeritus
Registered: 07/15/02
Posts: 2080
Loc: Milwaukee, WI
Hi John,

The other men have said it well. Anything run by MS will be very professional, completely safe, and you will find us to be very tolerant--we have all felt that no one would tolerate us "if they knew the truth." So we are good to each other.


If we do not live what we believe, then we will begin to believe what we live.

#71615 - 02/11/03 11:01 PM Re: Thank you!!!
blaidd Offline

Registered: 12/01/00
Posts: 240
Loc: Australia
Good to hear that you have come to a resolution in your mind about where you stand with your partner. I appreciate how hard that can be given the whirlwind of feelings that fly about one's head.

Attending the workshop, I'm sure, would be a powerful and moving experience. While I live in Australia, the groups I have been involved with in the past were always very tolerant. Generally, if there was any apprehension on anyone's part, the organisers were always right on the ball, and ready to deal with an issue if it arose. More often than not, it wasn't an issue.

However, I do understand the concern, very much so.



Blaidd (pronounced as blaith/blithe) is a welsh word meaning wolf.

#71616 - 02/13/03 08:30 AM Re: Thank you!!!
Chey-Wy Offline

Registered: 09/01/02
Posts: 245
Loc: Cheyenne, WY

I don't think that you have anything to worry about. I too am gay. I have only encountered one negative response in here and that was in chat. My Boyfriend at the time was trying to figure out if he was gay or straight. I had called him and he told me that he had a girlfrined and not to call him again. Everyone was very supportive. The only person that wasn't was someone new to chat. He said that my boyfriend had gotten "smart". However, this was before the chat changed and this person was a quest in the chat room. I have never seen him again.

I have gay friends, straight friends, and Bi friends here at Male Survivor. It has never really been an issue.

I hope that you have a good time at the retreat. I am still trying to figure out a way to go. I hope I can get everything arranged so I can and if I do ... I hope to see you there.


From "Lion King" "The Circle of Life" with Lyrics

Nants ingonyama bagithi Baba [Here comes a lion, Father]
Sithi uhm ingonyama [Oh yes, it's a lion] (Repeat)

Siyo Nqoba [We're going to conquer]
Ingonyama nengw' enamabala [As lion and a leopard come to this open place]


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