I hurt for a long time because of childhood sexual abuse. Now I want to provide a safe place for hurting men to connect with other survivors of sexual abuse. Talk to us. You don't have to use your real name to share your experiences or ask questions.

Same-sex Attraction

This post is from Roger Mann.

* * * * *

It's been a difficult struggle to accept God's truth about me. I impose so much of my dad's attitudes and vocalizations when thinking about God. It's not fair to God and not fair to me, but those ruts in the road of my logic journey are deep. The wagon just doesn't want to slip out and turn onto a different direction, a healthier direction without heroic effort. I feel I need some kind of an aha moment to turn that corner and leave this mental track.

From my high school days into in my fifties, I secretly accepted I was what everyone else probably thought: I'm gay. But I refused to admit it out loud. The closest I came was to tell someone I was bi and even that hurt and gave me a mental cringe.

I now admit that I have an unwanted same-sex attraction that I struggle against due to my childhood sexualization by my father and others. While I believe that to be accurate, it is not what God sees when He looks at me. At least I hope so. But even if he does see me that way, I love the fact that he loves me anyway, is not uncomfortable with my telling Him I love him and knowing there is no misunderstanding when I say it.

I’ve been uncomfortable telling another man that I love him, especially if he knows my history. Hugging another guy is fine if he doesn't know, but hugging one who does is awkward for me.

What is he thinking? Am I releasing fast enough so he doesn't think I am enjoying the contact too unduly?

Years ago, when I attended my first men’s conference, I was uncomfortable with any physical interaction for that reason. I also was careful not to seem like I was favoring certain guys so no one would get any ideas.

For me it's been a mine field. So, yeah, it's different from "I have a problem with alcohol, so let's not go to a bar."

I need male fellowship—healthy male fellowship— but I isolate because of the above. I feel like heaven's misfit toy. Still usable but marked down as defective.

3 comments:

Mark Cooper said...

Roger, I appreciate your comments about the struggle with attraction to men, and the inner turmoil that results.

I appreciate Roger's willingness to write about homosexual attractions - I believe it is something that many abused men struggle with to one extent or another.

Homosexual attractions are strong for me. If I did not choose to have strict accountability, I would still be using homosexual porn on a regular basis. I can clearly see how my boyhood abuse contributed to my attractions.

Here's some things I believe I'm seeing more clearly about my attractions as I continue to heal. As Roger says, God does not identity me by my sexual attractions. I also realize that all men need relationships with other men which include physical, spiritual and emotional aspects.

For me, sexually abused by men and now sexually attracted to men, it is tough accepting that healthy physical, spiritual, and emotional connection with men will never include sexual connection.

I have so many thoughts going in my mind from this post. But I think this is enough to share, at least for now.

Roger Mann said...

Thanks Mark, I appreciate you comments.

Preston Hill said...

Isn't it tragic and infuriating how evil seeks to arouse desires that feel shameful while at the same time discouraging the legitimate feelings of pleasure that we were made for? Abused or not, we were made to feel the affirmation, embrace and strong acceptance of kind, gentle, good men and women. We were made for community and communion.

I appreciate your honesty Roger on this most delicate issue. You are incredibly brave and strong to speak of this. These issues have remained in the shadows far too long, and the only way to heal the wound is to expose it.

I like acknowledging in the midst of this ambivalence that no amount or severity of abuse can change the fact that holy and intimate relationships with other men is a healthy part of my life. Yes, it is an uncomfortable part, an awkward part, a painful part. But I still need male and female community and healthy relationships.

Maybe that can start with online posts like these.

Bless you Roger, fellow healer. Strength and honor to you. You are worthy of goodness.