Wednesday, July 31, 2019

FROM GAY COUPLE TO ENLARGED FAMILY

Hello Project,
we don’t know each other but I know you a little because I’ve read the forum so many times and I still read it now and I think it’s my duty to tell you my story because you also have something to do with it.
I’m 32 years old, I don’t know if they are many but to me they seem truly many. I can say I’m lucky because life has been very generous with me. I have parents I love, who are getting old, but it’s inevitable, they never really made me feel alone.
I never had any problems with my homosexuality, or rather, I had no problems accepting it, for me it was an obvious and natural thing, I have been involved in a few stories, but of little meaning, just when I was very young, then I dedicated myself to work in almost exclusive and I put aside my emotional world for a while. I also met gay guys but, frankly, I didn’t feel attracted to them.
Then, when I was 26, I met a guy, whom I will call Fulvio here (because he is a bit red in hair [in Italian the adjective “fulvo” means “reddish”]). I met him at work but he wasn’t a colleague of mine, he was working for a company that lives producing semi-finished mechanical components for the company where I work. When we met, I have to say, I didn’t feel involved with him, for me he was just a guy I had met by chance and with whom I had absolutely nothing to share. For work reasons we had the opportunity to meet several times and so we started talking a little, but about everything and nothing in particular.
In hindsight I can say that he probably understood a lot more about me than what I understood about him. Still for work reasons we continued to see each other often and I noticed that when it happened, for me it was a pleasing thing and probably for him too, and so our mutual knowledge gradually deepened. He is a nice guy but not exactly a handsome guy, or at least he didn’t look like a handsome  guy to me, so I didn’t feel attracted to him in that sense. 
One day he was very angry, really furious, he was depressed, but very troubled, upset, aggressive, and he began to attack me, of course, only verbally. He unloaded his anger against me and I didn’t understand why. I must confess that for this reason I was uncomfortable, I did not understand the reason for his aggressiveness.
In the following days he didn’t change his attitude and then he disappeared, I never saw him again and I didn’t know what to think. I kept going to his company, always for work reasons, but in his place there was a middle-aged lady and I missed Fulvio. In the end I took courage and asked news about him. They told me that he had quit his job and that he never showed up again. I didn’t have his cell phone number, I asked the lady but she didn’t give it to me and I was very upset, but one day, while I was waiting for the lady in her office, I saw that there was an open agenda. Since I knew the guy’s name I looked for it and found it, I memorized the number and then, when the lady arrived, I acted as usual, as if nothing had happened.
When I got home I called him. He immediately asked me who had given me his number and I told him that I had stolen it, he started to set off his aggressiveness and attacked me badly and, shortly after, he closed the phone in an abrupt manner. I felt a total fool for having looked for him and I have been in a bad mood for most of the evening. Then, at around 11.00 pm he calls me back, apologizes, always a bit brusquely, asks me if I live alone or if there are others at home, I tell him that there is no one, he asks me where I live exactly, I tell him where and he replies that he will come to my house after a few minutes, I just say: ok!
He arrives, looks around, then asks me: “Why did you look for me?” I tell him that I hadn’t seen him for a few days and other such banalities. He stops me and says: “People don’t steal a phone number if there is no serious reason!” I feel a little put at the corner and I try to digress, he apparently changes the subject: “Do you have a girl?” I answer him: “No! And you?” He hesitates, then says, “No!” But he goes further: “So why did you look for me?” I reply in a deliberately neutral way: “Because I was fine talking to you.” Then he asks the question I never wanted to hear: “Are you gay?” I feel terrible embarrassment, but I say to him: “Yes” and I immediately add: “And you?” He waits a few seconds and then says: “Yes, but I don’t want a guy.” I answer him: “But I’m not in love with you, you’re not my type, you just seemed like an interesting guy … ” He interrupts me: “And what do you want from me?” I tell him that if he comes under my home at night there will be a reason, he looks at me with a defiant attitude: “You think you have understood everything, but you didn’t understand a shit! You only make me angry!”
Well, our relationship began like this, in practice somehow as a fight. Nothing tender, nothing affectionate, absolutely nothing sexual. He stayed at my house until after two, I suggested he could sleep at my home, obviously not in my room, but he didn’t want to hear about such proposals. His behavior destabilized me. In the following days I called him on the phone several times but he never answered. After a week he came back to my house late at night, I thought he wanted to talk a little, but he asked me if he could stay the night and he retired to the guest room and in the morning, very early, I heard he was closing the door of the house, I went to see, he had left and had left a note, with only written: “I’ll call you”.
Our relationship proceeded this way, apparently without a goal and without meaning. I didn’t understand anything about him, I didn’t know anything about him. I wondered why I had got into such a mess, I felt used and at the same time marginalized. Then a traumatic event intervened, but not at a psychological level, right at the physical level: I had a serious car accident and ended up in the hospital in a reserved prognosis for a few days. I don’t remember anything of those days, I only know that when I woke up, or better at my first re-emergence to consciousness, I had my parents and Fulvio around me. Then they told me he had been there every day as long as they allowed him to stay by my bed.
My recovery was slow, it took me almost three months to get back into acceptable conditions, that is to walk more or less normally and he stayed three months at my house to assist me, day and night, and the first times it must have been something really heavy. But he didn’t just assist me, he sat next to me and we talked a lot, he treated me with affection. Slowly I learned to understand his world, and it was a difficult world, so difficult that I didn’t believe that such a world could exist.
We slept in the same room, I on the orthopedic bed and he on a cot. I asked him why he had quit his job and he told me that he didn’t quit his job but they fired him because one of his bosses had tried something sexual with him and he had sent him to the hell. He told me that he stayed at my house also because he could no longer pay for the room because, without a job and without money it was absolutely impossible, and therefore he had also taken the opportunity to find a temporary accommodation. This speech struck me a lot.
He told me very briefly about his family, if we can call it this way. His father hadn’t recognized him and, in practice, he almost never saw him, his mother died of an overdose when he was a child and he was entrusted to his grandmother who lived with a very minimal pension, then, just a few days after he turned 22, his grandmother died too, he had just found a job and shared a rented room with another guy, but shortly they fired him and he had to leave the room.
Fulvio is extremely proud, he has a dignity, he has never talked to me about money and this means that, if he stays with me, very likely he is not there for money or to find an accommodation, even if he tells the exact opposite. Among other things, in the last period of my convalescence he found another job. Precisely for this reason we were forced to arrive at a clarification. He told me he could be autonomous again and that he would leave. I began to be afraid, I knew I could not ask him to stay with me on the grounds of economic utility because such a thing would have infuriated him. He didn’t want to depend on anyone, he said to me: “Now you don’t need me anymore.”
It was precisely to respond to that statement that I told him I had fallen in love with him. He looked at me right in the eyes and said, “Don’t lie! I know that it’s not true!” Then I had to correct my sentence: “Well, I think I could fall in love with you, but, please, don’t go away!” He stared at me for a few seconds: “At least you didn’t say lies.” And he stayed with me. I feared that he wanted to set a deadline, for example that he would say to me: “I only stay a month.” But I immediately noticed that he had set no limits, but obviously I pretended I hadn’t noticed it, and said nothing about this. Our life together began this way.
With the new job he had big problems, they wanted to fire him because he didn’t want to close his eyes in front of very deep forms of malpractice if not of real scam. Then he changed job and the new job was widely better, requited more time but was even better paid. For a certain period (two or three months at least) I thought that Fulvio had found a guy, because he spent a lot of time away from home, I was worried but I didn’t have the courage to ask him anything, I saw him very tired, stressed, almost physically destroyed by work.
At one point I thought that he really had serious problems because he was home only at night and for a few hours, I could no longer bear not knowing what was happening and I asked him what he had. He looked at me, he meditated for a moment and then he said to me: “It’s right for you to know it: I have a boyfriend, if you want, I pack my bags today and leave.” I stopped him and told him: “Ok, you have a boyfriend, but why are you so stressed?” And he replied: “Because Claudio has huge problems and we are trying to solve them, I work from morning to night, I do double shifts and I can hardly see him …” That’s what he told me about Claudio, then he added: “he’s a boy refused by his family and who is coming out of bad circles, who ran away from his city because he was really afraid of the criminals who forced him to … well, you understood … “
He told me that Claudio had a bed for rent and that he didn’t work because he was in very bad shape. I told him: “But make him come here! With a minimum of sacrifice this house can be enough for the three of us, then we’ll see what we can do.” He looked at me quite perplexed, then said: “Do you realize what you are saying?” I replied: “Maybe not perfectly, but let’s not waste time, let’s go get him.” Claudio was really upset: skin and bones, two hours later he was at home with Fulvio. 
I gave them my room that had a double bed and I moved into the small room, they didn’t want to, but I forced them. The same afternoon we took Claudio to a very good doctor who prescribed him a series of tests and explained to us how to do in order to make Claudio be taken on charge by our region’s health service, since he comes from another region. Obviously Claudio also did the HIV test and since he hadn’t had sex for quite some time, the window period had also passed. The test gave negative results and we calmed down, after a few days we had all the clinical results in hand. In practice, Claudio carried the consequences of an untreated bronchopneumonia and full recovery would take time. Everything else was in order. 
Claudio was then 23 years old, he was very tall but he already had a bent back and was very thin. We took care of him and saw him slowly bloom again. Fulvio was madly in love with him and seeing them together aroused great tenderness in me, with me they were absolutely natural and casual. Sometimes we used to watch television together, I in the armchair and they crouched together on the sofa. I, who in theory should have been jealous, I felt happy to see them like this.
Almost five years have passed. We still live together, we are now a family, they are a very tender and very real gay couple, I don’t know what I am, at the beginning I was a bit of a nanny, now I’m “only” a true friend who loves them. Now Claudio also works and we share all the expenses, they have placed it as a mandatory condition to continue being together. My way of being gay is certainly strange but nevertheless I wouldn’t give it up for anything in the world: their happiness is my happiness!
I have to add one more thing that seems very important to me. One day I was at my parents’ house, I took courage in two hands and told them the whole story. I didn’t know how they would take it. My father looked me straight in the eyes, then he stood up, he said to me: “Come here!” And hugged me tightly, then he exchanged a look of understanding with my mother and told me: “Sunday the three of you must come to have lunch here with us!” There were no other comments of any kind. On Sunday, when Fulvio and Claudio came to my parent’s home, I tell you it almost with tears in my eyes, my parents were just as happy as two kids and Fulvio and Claudio had a great time. Now every now and then mom goes to my house, cleans the house and brings us something already cooked to eat. Fulvio and Claudio have a beautiful relationship with my parents, in practice we are an extended family.
That’s all, Project, of course you can put the email where you like better because there are no identifiable elements and the names have been changed. Fulvio and Claudio greet you, they too have heard of you!
___________
If you like, you can participate in the discussion of this post, open on the Gay Project Forum: http://gayprojectforum.altervista.org/T-from-gay-couple-to-enlarged-family

Wednesday, May 8, 2019

SEXUAL ABUSE AND OBSESSIVE CONTENTS

The connection between sexual abuse and obsessive content related to sexuality deserves further study. I will consider two different situations, the first concerning a gay guy who has been abused in childhood and who presents a gay sexuality deeply conditioned by the experience of the abuse, the second concerning a straight guy who has been abused in adolescence and has developed a gay-themed OCD (I will only deal with the case of a OCD that had already manifested before the abuse). The situations, despite their substantial differences, have a fundamental aspect in common: the identification of the victim with the abuser. Let’s start with the first situation.
1) A gay guy, who has been sexually abused in childhood, has a gay sexuality that in the first meetings with his partners does not present particular problems but, if the relationship deepens, the guy gets to confess to his partner that he has been sexually abused, nevertheless he does not tend to feel as the victim but almost as the co-responsible if not as the promoter of the abuse, he tries anyhow to involve his partner in his obsessive fantasies concerning the abuse with insistently (obsessively) repeated questions about the circumstances of the abuse, asking him what he would do if he found himself in similar situations; faced with evasive or patently disinterested responses, the guy seems incredulous and attributes the lack of interest in sharing that particular sexual fantasies on the part of his partner to an alleged moralism of the partner himself, however the insistence does not cease even in the face of an obvious lack of interest but becomes even more pressing, as if the guy wanted to obtain a confession analogous to his own. The obsessive insistence on the partner goes as far as to induce him, in more or less long time, to distance himself and interrupt the relationship.
It is evident that the memory of the abuse has become a sexual archetype from which it is difficult to get free, and here a mechanism characteristic of the abuse is triggered: the victim imagines himself in the role of the abuser, situations of discomfort even very strong are created this way, because the victim sees himself as a potential pedophile and develops pedophile fantasies in which he assumes, in an oscillating manner, both the role of victim and abuser.
Basically the projective identification with the abuser and his behaviors favors guilt feelings and strongly weakens the possibility of rationalizing the memory of the abuse and of living a sexuality not deeply conditioned by the abuse itself.
2) In the case of the straight guy with a pre-existing gay themed OCD, the abuse in adolescence creates objective complications that cannot be ignored because it does nothing but feed the OCD, even though it cannot actually destroy the guy’s straight sexuality. The mechanism of identification with the abuser, in this case, cannot lead to true gay sexual fantasies (because the guy is a straight guy) but only to obsessions and gay compulsions which, as is usually the case in the OCD, remain, at most, at the level of masturbation and, in almost all cases, never materialize in real sexual relationships. The gay-themed compulsions and obsessions are perceived as deeply disturbing compared to the true sexuality that is and anyway remains straight.
The identification with the abuser can however be more complex when the abuser is not really a gay man but he is a married man or a man who has children, that is when the abuser is or appears to be a straight adult, with whom the straight guy with OCD can easily identify on the basis of the following projective mechanism: ”He is straight because he is married and has children, but if he abused me it means he also had gay fantasies and could not refrain from putting them into practice, but I am straight too, because I have a girlfriend and I have sex with her, but I also have gay fantasies, so in the end I won’t be able to stop myself and I’ll end up needing to have sex with a man. How can I be with a girl if I already desire men and know that sooner or later I will betray her with a man? I am fooling my girlfriend into believing that I am straight, but it is not so!”
In this case the identification mechanism acts through different paths but it is no less disruptive than in the case of the gay guy and creates the risk, sometimes lived obsessively, but objectively not very concrete, to lead to the breakdown the relationship with the girl.
The deeper identification with the abuser leads to two closely related consequences:
1) the responsibility of the abuser appears to be much lighter;
2) even if in such situations it’s evident that in any case no responsibility can be charged on the victim, the victim himself overestimates his own presumed responsibility up to the point to consider his own behavior decisive, and consequently to experience guilt feelings objectively unjustified.
In the two cases presented, the most suitable conditions to overcome obsessive thinking are realized when the guys have their ”real” emotional life, that is:
1) in the first case, when the gay guy lives not a unilateral falling in love but an authentic love story with a guy with whom a relationship is created that is completely independent of the fantasies related to abuse, fantasies which can also remain but marginalized and spontaneously not shared, fantasies that are not considered as a taboo but are very rarely argument of conversation. In essence the stories that materialize or tend to materialize only or mainly in terms of more or less spontaneous sharing of fantasies linked to abuse are not true love stories and therefore do not contribute to the overcoming of obsessive thinking;
2) in the second case, when the straight guy lives a love story in which the girl knows that the guy has been abused and realizes that the obsessive thought linked to the OCD can cause the guy to question his heterosexuality. The OCD has a strong conditioning capacity in two cases:
a) when the girl tries to ignore obsessive contents, pretending that they do not exist;
b) when the girl emphasizes the obsessive contents and offers them a sound box that amplifies their effect.
OCD must be tackled with awareness but without dramatization.
_____________
If you want, you can participate in the discussion of this post open on the Gay Project Forum:  http://gayprojectforum.altervista.org/T-sexual-abuse-and-obsessive-contents

Thursday, May 3, 2018

MAYBE I AM GAY BUT I LOVE MY FORMER GIRLFRIEND

Pratoditurno
Dear Project, I am 30 years old and I just discovered that I’m gay … I almost always masturbated thinking of guys, even though having always had women and having been satisfied by them I lived it as a kind of private transgression and so I never realized that I was homosexual … I had a long story with a girl and I loved her deeply, I masturbated thinking about her or our intercourses … it excited me a lot and I wanted to have sex with her. I was thinking only of her, although often when I was alone I also masturbated with gay porn. I must say that my gay masturbation has always been and is now of a contemplative kind, in the sense that I don’t ever feel in my fantasy the desire for sex with a guy but only the desire for images of naked guys. When my ex left me, to my great regret because I was still in love, I began to feel an increasingly strong attraction towards a friend of mine, with attached crush: I quoted him without a real reason, I followed him secretly, I was jealous … but at the time I couldn’t understand what was happening to me, so I kept going for a couple of years … until I decided to try an experience with a guy. I made friends with this guy and we started to try a gay sexual experience. The excitement was very strong at the beginning, I never experienced such a thing with a woman, but then gradually it waned … and finally I realized that sex with girls is much more engaging for me, even if the body of girls doesn’t excite me as strongly as the one of guys. In short, I didn’t have many answers … rather I have to say that the male body also made me a little repulsion … and I didn’t like the penis in any way. But the strong instinct to go with a man is there and I cannot deny it. After a few months I met again my ex and we had sex in a very engaging way. The attraction was there and I even thought for a moment that I was in love with her again, but then the premises were not there to get back together and we said goodbye. After that time I had other meetings with some guys and at the end, apart from the initial excitement, as usual I came back to have doubts about the fact that I really liked guys. Until a few weeks ago … when another friend, who attracted me so much, got engaged with a girl … since then I realized that in practice only the guys attract me, even if women have something that strikes me … sometimes sexual attraction, but less than what I experience for the guys. So I realized I was fundamentally gay … maybe a flexible gay man, who can even make love with girls if he’s in love, but anyway gay. I realized that in the end I could very well fall in love with a guy and make a story together, even if I don’t like it … I don’t want to be gay but I feel very strong pushes toward guys when I’m close to nice guys. Then when I think back to the exciting moments with my ex I think I’m straight … but actually my overwhelming sexuality is gay, even if I refuse to live it. I had tried to hear some guys to attend them seriously but then I changed my mind … I mean I’m in a big confusion. I cannot think of anything else, I just came out a nervous breakdown. Please … advise me what to do … and tell me what you think of all this ..
 
Alyosha
I leave Project the honor of answering on the subject, he is a master in this kind of analysis. I immediately anticipate that for what you write I don’t think there is any clear homosexuality, it is quite clear that a person who feels for years an emotional and sexual drive toward girls certainly is not a gay. Instead, you belong to that gray area that is hard to define within categories that have lied to us for centuries: building a family relationship with a woman and having relationships with men were much more common and “natural” practices than what is believed, and are still now in many “masculine” contexts (of those of the “male as a male”). I don’t think right now you need to define yourself in some way to understand what you have to do, indeed probably closing the circle too quickly now and draw the sums also hurts, because now you discard something that sooner or later will return from the window, because women attract you at least as gays do if not even much. What to do? Well, in the meantime, live your homosexual moment! You’ll be a bit terrified on the side of prevention, but it will not hurt you, you started as a rocket and you may find yourself very unprepared to manage a homosexual relationship. I tell you it from experience, since I have a story very similar to yours. In the beginning, projecting hetero categories on the gay world is very simple but you risk remaining badly burned. The story with your ex is over, it’s over after years, you’ve seen each other again, you’ve had sex and all this goes completely into the background, while it seems rather like the triggering event. You should first ask yourself if it’s over for real since at the first useful opportunity you two make sparks when you meet each other again. If you decide it’s over, close this relationship definitely before starting new stories with other people. From this point of view if it is a men rather than a women, it only complicates matters, so you are even more obliged to close the relationship with your ex. Try to stay alone just a little bit, a story like that isn’t easy to digest right away. Only then I would return to the question of sexuality, otherwise the risk is that the motivation to leave your ex, pushes the accelerator on the issue of sexuality, not allowing you a clear evaluation. The drives and desires must be listened to, not incarcerated, and bisexuality is in many ways more disarming than homosexuality, because it conflicts with another dogma of western society, which is that of monogamy, dogma if possible more stringent than that according to which male and male cannot fit together. It is already difficult to manage the transition from heterosexual to homosexual life, you can imagine how difficult can be becoming aware of being bisexual. How do you manage it? How can you be labeled? You will be a hetero-curious for the straight people and a repressed gay  for gays, in short it is not exactly like having a walk! : lol :. Don’t worry, learn to understand what you are for yourself and later you will think about what you are for others. You will never be gay as gay people who have never had relationships with women, I can anticipate this, because it is the feeling that I live. I lived a hetero life for 30 years and this famous gay world, including the forum from which you read me, I always watch it a little surprised and a bit shy. There are many things I don’t understand at all, such as the obsessive tendency to reduce everything to the issue of sexuality. Which is a little what you’re doing too. It seems that all the problems of gays are in the fact of being gay. Hetero people are all happy, because they have the female and don’t have any couple problem, neither problems relating to the other sex or tensions between strong sexuality and desire of monogamy, and so on. etc.. So are you sure that if the guy you flirted with was a woman, would you not stay the same with the thorn in the side? Do you like more your ex or the new girl with whom you only have a sexual involvement? Don’t you think that setting the question in this way in the meantime you would solve the problem of understanding what you really feel for your ex? If you also like males you don’t have to decide how much you like them, but accept this fact and learn how to live with it in the right and healthiest way for you. Learn to know the gay world, taste it little by little, without getting burned or worse poisoned.
 
Project
First of all, I welcome you to the Forum and I hope it will be useful. I thank Aliosha for his speech, which seems to clarify the essential points of the matter and which I share. I limit myself to an analysis from a strictly gay point of view. You start with a statement: “I just discovered that I’m gay”, but conclude by saying “I’m in a big confusion .”  You bring some arguments that should confirm the idea of being gay: “I almost always masturbated thinking of guys”, where the “almost” means that even in the masturbation there is a hetero component. About the time you were with your girlfriend, you say, “when I was alone I also masturbated with gay porn .” You affirm that “the strong instinct to go with a man is there”. About gay affectivity, which is an essential component of being gay, you say: “I began to feel an increasingly strong attraction towards a friend of mine, with attached crush: I quoted him without a real reason, I followed him secretly, I was jealous” but you don’t talk of love with this guy. The homosexual falling in love for you is not a real experience but a possible hypothesis, after all unwanted: “I could very well fall in love with a guy and make a story together, even if I don’t like it … I don’t want to be gay but I feel very strong pushes toward guys when I’m near nice guys.” When you talk about guys you don’t talk about love but about friendship and sexual contact with a guy is seen in strictly subjective terms and not as a couple, as an experience that you can “try”: “I made friends with this guy and we started to try a gay sexual experience.” From here you get a partial and flexible idea of homosexuality: “So I realized I was fundamentally gay … maybe a flexible gay man, who can even make love with girls if he’s in love, but anyway gay.” “but actually my overwhelming sexuality is gay, even if I refuse to live it.” The element of which I feel the lack in your description of homosexuality is the affective one, it is the falling in love with a guy. I emphasize that a gay guy of your age generally has lived his experiences not only on a sexual level but especially on an emotional level, and often these experiences are not easy, because they involve the idea of going out of oneself and of “loving” a guy, a real guy, not the protagonist of a video, a true guy, with all his weaknesses and all his contradictions. The experience of gay falling in love is not only and not even primarily a sexual experience, it is the experience of a deep affective relationship in which, as a rule, almost nothing goes as planned and in the end the relationship holds only if there it is at the base a deep feeling, with all its sexual values, of course, but in no case reducible only to a sexual experience. For you, at 30, the idea of falling in love with a guy is just a hypothesis that has never happened. I often see young guys “madly” in love with their friend, maybe even straight, and totally transported by this feeling in which the idea of sexual experience is just the last of the thoughts. In the things you say the gay affective dimension is almost completely missing. You’ve experienced gay masturbation as a kind of “private transgression” but you’ve never experienced a gay falling in love and when you stop to reflect specifically on gay sexuality you say, “the male body also made me a little bit repulsive … and I did not like the penis in any way. “These expressions are definitely irreconcilable with the idea of only sexual homosexuality. But let’s get on the ethereal side. You say you have “always had women and having been satisfied by them” and shortly after: “I had a long story with a girl and I loved her deeply, I masturbated thinking about her or our relationships … it excited me a lot and I wanted to make continuous sex. I was thinking only of her. . . “Here you speak explicitly of love and the sexual element integrates perfectly not the affective one. Not only that, but a gay parenthesis did not remove you from heterosexuality: “When my ex left me, to my great regret because I was still in love. . . “; “After a bit ‘of months I resented my ex and we had sex, very nice. The attraction was there and I even thought for a moment that I was in love with her again. “And here again you talk about falling in love and not just about sex. And when you limit yourself to just the sexual aspect, write: “when I think back to the exciting moments with my ex I think I’m straight.” The picture is not that of a gay, or rather a 100% gay, who is not interested in girls and who “falls in love” with boys. The emotional dimension is essentially hetero. In such a situation, looking for a relationship of gay couple based only on sexual attraction means exposing yourself to the risk of big disappointments, because, beyond what people think, in the gay field (I speak of the vast majority of undeclared gays ) affectivity is absolutely fundamental. Among gays, as among ethereal, the couples who hold are those that have a deep emotional relationship. For a gay in the vast majority of cases, behind the sex there is a very strong emotional request. Among other things, if you have no experience of the gay reality it is good to go there very much with the feet of lead because the risk of sexually transmitted diseases and in particular of AIDS exists and so, therefore, always and in any case, maximum caution! We try to narrow the field: it is obvious that the categories have a very relative value, but if we have to use one, I would call bisexuality into question, but with not small reserves, because to speak properly of bisexuality we should find not only, also if in a different proportion, both gay and hetero masturbation, but also forms of falling in love both gay and hetero are substantially similar, that is, with similar affective involvements. I add one thing: the guys who, like you, have had a non-superficial and gratifying experience of heterosexual sexuality, tend to transpose their hetero sexual behaviors in an almost automatic way, which often creates misunderstandings and difficulties. Just an example: a boy used to heterosexual sexuality and comforted by the vision of gay porn, is led to think that anal penetration is the fundamental element of gay sexuality, something far from reality. I wonder, then, how can you understand the meaning of gay sexuality, which is the sexuality of the like and not that of the complementary, a boy who says: “the male body also made me a little repulsion … and I didn’t like the penis in any way.” I add something, it happens also to 100% true gays to have relationships with girls, in the nineteenth century it was common. I don’t believe that you are in this condition at all. Raffalovich in 1896 described with these expressions the relationships of true homosexuals with women: “a forcing, something essentially “non-sexual”, an effort of the will that is a true violence against the free will, in essence a form of onanism incapable of leaving memories.” It is clear that your point of view towards heterosexual sexuality is not the one typical of 100% gay guys. In essence I would go very cautious before “trying” a relationship with a guy (an expression that a true gay would never use). I add another thing: the problem of bisexual guys is not in accepting their gay side, but in the fact that a couple’s life, hetero or gay, requires a form of exclusivity. For a gay to form a stable gay couple can be deeply stabilizing and rewarding, for a bisexual it means giving up the other half of the sky and the desire of the other half of the sky manifests itself particularly strong when a couple relationship excludes it.
 
Pratoditurno
I thank you for your very deep analysis … You’re right about everything, labels are not needed but if you really need to use one I’ll be a predominantly straight bisexual. On the other hand, sexuality is a very complex thing consisting of several dimensions and we are not necessarily on the same position for each of these dimensions.
PROJECT: You really have a great gift. You understood exactly how I’m. In fact, when you say that my gay sexual experience was only “subjective” you tell the truth, because not only I see the male as a friend (and in fact my partners were first of all friends and then also partners) but the experience I build with them is unidirectional, in the sense that I like to get involved but never give pleasure to my partner. A bit as if the guy was just “a toy” and not a person … and in fact this fits perfectly with all your speech. It’s as if I wanted a kind of inflatable doll to use it as I want, ending up just masturbating only by looking at it. I say this because in all my gay experiences (if so we can call them), after an initial excitement, I immediately begin to feel bored and, in addition to a strong repulsion for what I have done, I cannot even ejaculate … I have to ejaculate endeavoring hard every time. Or I don’t ejaculate at all. On the other hand, I have always noticed that my partners manifested a strong interest in the penis and a great propensity to have an orgasm in the presence of another male. So I wondered if maybe I was having a problem or if I had to stop with the males … because masturbating or doing a fellatio to a man it’s something that not only I don’t like, but provokes in me a feeling of repulsion  … and having an anal intercourse, for me, is like masturbating alone … nothing as involving as with a woman. Among other things, if I get excited thinking about a woman and after a little think back to a man this one not only doesn’t attract me anymore, but also makes me feel a little repulsion. In short, considering these things I have just written and adding, as you point out, that I feel guys only as friends and I never fell in love with them (for 27 years I have not even felt the “weight” of this masturbation in a gay key, as if it was nothing at all) I think that it makes no sense to delude a gay guy proposing a date and then leave him after a while because it is not for me … Indeed, as Alyosha says, I will stay good alone for a while, trying to calm me down. My real problem is that it’s been a long time since I’ve been with a woman, although I’m in constant search (in 3 years I have heard dozens of women, but these days it’s really difficult to find one to go out with you … ). Let me know what you think of these last things. Thanks so much!!! I will always be grateful to you.
 
Alyosha
“My real problem is that it’s been a long time since I’ve been with a woman, although I’m in constant search (in 3 years I have heard dozens of women, but these days it’s really difficult to find one to go out with you … )”
Well you have to tell your gay friends  such tings! They are all convinced that the problem of finding a suitable partner is just theirs: lol: Ah how much would do well to compare their problems with those of hetero guys, they would find they have a lot more problems in common than they think …
 
Project
Well, frankly, I think your second post is so explicit that there’s no need for any explanation. But I would like to draw attention to the fact that in a couple relationship, be it hetero or gay, what really matters it is not having sex but loving each other, and they are two different levels. I recently followed the story of two guys, one with a job and the other unemployed, and this was an element of extreme stress for the unemployed guy. His partner was close to him from an operational point of view, the search for work they did it in two and among them, even if there were economic problems, because living in two with only one salary and in addition low was objectively difficult, but there are never been couple problems. Then the unemployed guy found a job but in conditions of great discomfort, he had a boss who exploited him and paid him if and when he wanted. The guy returned home humiliated and depressed and his companion encouraged him to resign and to try again. Finally another work came out, not exciting at the economic level but quiet and in the midst of quiet people. The couple life of these two guys was the safety valve that allowed them to overcome a crisis that was in danger of being truly destructive. The guy who was looking for work told me: “I felt calm, when I got home I knew that he was waiting for me and he loved me and that once the door was closed, all the bad things remained outside and inside we were only us. You don’t imagine the feeling of tenderness, in two on the sofa, closed in the blanket (at home there is a heating that doesn’t work at all) watching TV, I was really happy!” This story is the story of two guys but it could very well be the story of a straight couple. Among these guys there was also sex but there was not only sex and they tried to see themselves each one with the other’s eyes. I mean that sex is a component of the emotional life and it is not even the most important. The sex lived “with love” is a beautiful thing, lived without love is a form of selfishness that can never give a deep gratification.
 
Geographer
Pratoditurno wrote: “You’re right about everything, labels are not needed but if you really need to use one I’ll be a predominantly straight bisexual. On the other hand, sexuality is a very complex thing consisting of several dimensions and we are not necessarily on the same position for each of these dimensions.”
In this forum, many know how I think about bisexuality. Honestly, I don’t believe in bisexuality. I have often heard of bisexual guys, who in the end had a preponderant interest in the same sex and were hiding behind the fact that sometimes they attended a girl or the women’s body didn’t make them sick. I am a homosexual, yet women don’t disgust me, their body simply doesn’t excite me. In fact, I often think of a charming, beautiful woman, I contemplate her as well but, I mean, it stops there. And the same could very well be said for a straight guy towards another guy (although this is in a sense banned because of social taboos). Pratoditurno, if you had I been 20 years old maybe I would have been more understanding and less severe, on the other hand you would still have been a kid. But you’re 30, you’re a man now. You should have a clear idea of who you are. If you had been 60 years old, I would have avoided to point out the matter because probably you would have internalized some constructions of the past that absolutely forbid homosexuality, and every so often enter the forum men of a mature age who tell how they have experienced the thing badly. But in your case it’s different, you’re adult and vaccinated, young but not too much and I don’t think that at 30 you can be burden with the same homophobic ideologies that have afflicted a sixty year old or that you can have the same insecurity of a boy. I looked at the Project response, which I don’t agree with. And here the risk is that maybe you can stay serene behind the word “bisexual”, maybe in a sense deluding yourself that you can safely spend the rest of your life with a woman. Let me be clear that I have no hatred towards bisexuals, and I’m the first to think that it is really sad to have to hide behind labels that should, in a sense, regulate our lives according to certain criteria. But you yourself tell how your sexual fantasies are predominantly homo, I think that once said this, everything is said. It is obvious that then, when we speak of real meetings (clearly homosexual), we detach ourselves from fantasies / abstractions, and we must clash with reality. So in that case the erection is less, maybe there is even a little less excitement or anything else simply because when you masturbate you are alone and you have complete knowledge of your body, with which you have confidence. The moment you have sex with another person, it means that two people have to relate to each other, and you understand that it is not easy. We are detached from that abstract sexuality and relate to one that is concrete and with which we don’t have the same confidence as with masturbation, it is obvious that as a result the erection cannot last or partners are less close-knit. Mutual harmony is something that is acquired gradually, the same gradualness that you have conquered when you tell yourself that you can make love with your ex. Then, Pratoditurno, let me say one thing: referring back to what I told you at the beginning, being homosexual doesn’t mean that you cannot recognize a beautiful woman. A homosexual is not an impotent man with women, he can really make love with a woman. He simply doesn’t like it because making love with a woman doesn’t fit to his nature. Then maybe you will be in love with your ex-girlfriend, I don’t doubt this, but I would say that it is a love born according to the canons that society has built for you and to which you have adapted. When I was a child (I think I was 14), I fell in love with little girls too, then I gradually became aware and now I wouldn’t be able to fall in love with a girl. The best thing for me would be to go out with a guy, without the meeting having any sexual end, simply for a knowledge. Unfortunately I know it’s difficult because in the mud of these applications and chats (which I find really squalid, I wonder when they will make some cleaner applications) is full of people absolutely not recommendable, you need to do a great skimming and then maybe you could find someone, but this is possible only if you live in big cities. But from what you write you don’t have such problem, since you say that you have had several opportunities to meet young people, so I assume that you don’t live in a village outside the world. You yourself tell me that your prevalent sexuality is gay, I think you answered yourself. And do you know what I tell you? That a homosexual person can safely live a peaceful life, with friends, with job ambitions and so on. The fact that you are homosexual doesn’t mean that you have to live a life different from that of a straight man. There are no “gay lives” and “hetero lives” because it seems to me that this is your fear. A gay man is simply a man who falls in love emotionally and sexually with other men, stop.
In any case, in my opinion, you can only do well a happy life as homosexual in cities that are not too small, absolutely out of the family, because if you still live at home with mom and dad then it is impossible (I still speak for me,
I will never tell my parents about my homosexuality, then maybe there are more open parents but in short, it is not so frequent). But I think that here you are running too much, you still seem little accepted and I am already talking about this, but the essence of my speech is that having this fear of being homosexual nowadays is just anachronistic, especially if you are thirty and independent. Live your life without paranoia, and remember that the life is only one.
 
Pratoditurno
My dear Geographer, I thank you for your opinion, that I respect, but I don’t agree with. I don’t agree certainly not because I want to be heterosexual at all costs when it’s clear that I’m not, but because, as you could read, I’m not even gay. If you deny the existence of bisexuality, with all its nuances, you deny decades of studies and progress on human sexuality, which is an extremely complex subject. Many gays, who shared your opinion, made me your own speech, but if you think about it, these are just speculations. You say that heterosexual love was suggested only by external conditioning and that I did sex just because I’m a man and therefore I’m not impotent. But how many of these gays, including you, have experienced a deep love for a woman? How many, for years, only wanted her, thought only of her and every day of their life at all hours had it hard thinking of making love with her? How many have dreamed every day to marry her? How many have masturbated thinking about her or sex with her? To how many of them continually surfaced images of her naked during masturbation? And then: how many of these have only contemplative fantasies about males, but then, in practice, they don’t like sex between men? Here, as you see, those of many gays are just words but are not justified by practice. If these gays had tried these and many other things they would not think so. I’m not saying that it is impossible that one day, after many attempts, I will find a gay love, nobody can tell it. Nobody! But I don’t think that being as rigid as you are, when everyone knows that bisexuality exists, it’s good for something, and even less to reassure me. I’m not a homosexual like you, just as you you’re not like another gay, etc. etc., it is all subjective.
A greeting.
__________
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Friday, April 27, 2018

GAYS AND DYSFUNCTIONAL SEX

Ego-dystonic homosexuality

In the classification of mental and behavioral disorders contained in the 10th formulation of the World Health Organization (WHO) document for the classification of diseases (ICD-10), homosexuality is no longer considered an illness in itself and is recognized the existence of dystonic forms of all sexual orientations. Echo-dystonic homosexuality is a homosexuality recognized by the subject but not accepted. If a homosexual, fully conscious of being homosexual, comes into conflict with his sexual orientation for religious, moral or social reasons and wishes to change sexual orientation,  his homosexuality is called ego-dystonic homosexuality. This category is now outdated and ego-dystonic homosexuality is no longer classified as a mental disorder, but as a simple discomfort due to cultural or social reasons.

The ICD-10 was approved by the 43th WHO Assembly in May 1990 and has been in use in the WHO member States since 1994. The release date for ICD-11 is 2018, and any reference to homosexuality, even the ego-dystonic one, is expected to be completely eliminated.
Two points must be underlined:

1) the excess of psychiatrization has arrived to overcome the limits of the ridiculous (and really of the pathological) with the description, in the XIX century, of a presumed disease, the drapetomania, a "disorder of slaves who have the tendency to escape from their owner due to an innate propensity for the desire to travel". Psychiatry, starting from the assumption that slavery was a normal thing, has come to consider pathological the tendency of slaves to flee!

2) maintaining the category of "ego-dystonic homosexuality" has fueled the thriving market of conversion therapies aimed at bringing back homosexuals to heterosexuality, because these aberrant practices were officially considered forms of treatment for a "disease" and therefore were repayable by health insurances or national health services, if any.

Homosexuality had been deleted from the DSM (Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of the American Psychiatric Association (APA)) since 1973, after a very tortuous path in which ideological resistance, political opportunism and economic interests were intertwined in various ways, in a border territory in which science (psychiatry) risked losing even the appearance of objectivity. In this regard, I refer to a fine article by Jack Drescher: Out of DSM: Depathologizing Homosexuality which illustrates the path that led to the de-pathologisation of homosexuality by the APA.

Let's leave aside, with all the reservations of the case, the category of ego-dystonic homosexuality,  and let’s come to the specific object of this article, that is the dysfunctional gay sexuality which is something profoundly different.

Gays and dysfunctional sex 

The cultural tradition has accustomed us to the association of sex and pleasure, endorsing the identification of sexuality with the gratification that can derive from it, but the experience teaches that in some cases sexuality, far from being associated with pleasure and gratification, becomes an expression and sometimes a non-secondary cause of depressive states that are inconspicuous but subtle and even dangerous.
 
The association of sexuality and sense of gratification is not a necessary constant but is induced by sexual imprinting and the first approaches to adult sexuality that act in a varied and complex way on the components of the personality in formation and mold it. You can get to experience sexuality as a real obsession, that is, as an invasive and pervasive dependence that deeply affects the whole personality, you can get to experience sexuality as self-punishment, as a self-imposed form of moral degradation or as constantly accompanied by feelings of guilt associated with an unstoppable impulse to repeat. In other words, sexuality can be a dysfunctional response to the discomfort that not only does not relieve it but can weigh it down in a conditioning way.
 
When there is a spasmodic exercise of sexuality, particularly when sexuality is divorced from the affective component, the legitimate suspicion arises that this is a dysfunctional sexuality.
 
I give a very simple but very meaningful example: when a guy lives a very active sexuality but accompanied by a sense of satisfaction and gratification, there is no reason to suspect any form of discomfort, if instead the overactive sexuality is accompanied by depressive feelings, a drop in self-esteem or the perception of a sense of dependence, it is legitimate to ask oneself if there is or not a form of unease behind it.
 
Sexuality as a manifestation and component of discomfort is more easily encountered in homosexuals and in particular in those homosexuals who, for reasons of social conformity or for facts linked to individual history, live in conditions of repression or present forms of sexuality that are not easily accepted, not even in contexts otherwise welcoming, such as intergenerational relationships.
 
As it’s obvious and as I have been able to find on several occasions that having suffered in childhood or even in early adolescence forms of sexual abuse predisposes to dysfunctional sexuality but does not determine it in a necessary way.
 
At the base of dysfunctional sexuality we often find the idea of transgression and of involving others in transgressive behaviors, which often means trying to get out of isolation and share an intimate and at the same time anxiogenic aspect of one's personality.
 
I would like to point out that dysfunctional sexuality often has its roots in areas of individual experience that have nothing to do with sexuality but which have strong effects on self-esteem and are often linked to the context of the family the individual comes from.
 
The patrimony of sexual intimacy represents one of the most important and at the same time most fragile dimensions of the personality, an invisible but present dimension on which each person measures the social integration at the deepest level. Of course sexual intimacy can be related to many feelings of guilt, linked to the tendency to invade the sexual intimacy of others or to dispel one's own with abnormal or excessive behaviors.
 
From what I have been able to see the dichotomy between affectivity and sexuality, which many times seems original, is often strongly accentuated by experiences of rejection, that is, stories with an emotional-sexual background begun with enthusiasm and ended by manifest incompatibility.
 
The repeated experience of affective incompatibility leads to the shift of emotional investment towards non-affective sexuality. The archetypes emerged from sexual imprinting thus become models to be repeated continuously and progressively less gratifying. The idea of transgression begins to weigh more than that of sharing, behaviors become ritual and stereotyped and a sort of script is formed that must be recited more or less identical regardless of the personality of the partner.
 
This mechanism, which in fact creates an obsessive dependence, is initially experienced as a mere unease but tends gradually to become compulsive. The emotional components are withdrawn from sexuality but don’t disappear at all from the individual horizon, they remain only in a dimension separate from sexuality. Guys who live in conditions of sexual dysfunctionality have a very deep affectivity that can manifest as such in all its potential, which can be enormous, I mean that those guys can live important friendships, can have, on aspects that don’t touch sexuality, a very rigid moral code, but when it comes to sexuality they will end up feeling dominated by the compulsion to repeat the same behaviors and to try to involve others in behaviors that they consider transgressive and in any case to dissociate affectivity and sexuality.
 
I must observe that many of the behaviors considered by those guys to be transgressive, are in reality quite common variants of sexual behavior that, when they are not accompanied by a sense of dependence and compulsion to repeat or by the tendency to focus only on them, don’t express and don’t create discomfort at all.
 
I report a significant example: intergenerational relationships created on an emotional basis are not expressions of discomfort but those relationships, lived without affection and almost self-imposed, manifest an unease that can be profound, the same is true for example for anal penetration that has nothing to do with discomfort, when it is experienced as rewarding and spontaneous, but instead is a sign of a discomfort that can be profound when it is experienced as self-imposed by people who in their sexual fantasies have never considered that particular sexual practice. The same could be said for the use of a particularly provocative, vulgar or aggressive language in sexual encounters and so on. It happens in these cases a little what happens in the OCD (obsessive compulsive disorder), a behavior that in itself would not have anything transgressive, if lived in an emotional, playful and otherwise collaborative dimension and without fixed roles, i.e. with criteria of parity and in a light way, is instead considered transgressive and is experienced as compulsive, but the reason is not in the objective transgressive character of that behavior or in its intrinsic compulsiveness but only in the mind of the subject that associates those behaviors with a situation of discomfort.
 
Some criteria tend to prevent dysfunctional sexuality as far as possible:
 
1) Absolute respect for the privacy of the child or adolescent in matters related to sexuality
 
2) To try to prevent sexual abuse of minors, which have a profound effect on adult life
 
3) To create an environment that tends to promote self-esteem and develop an affective climate, in particular by providing examples of the association between affectivity and sexuality.
 
Let us now analyze synthetically each of these points.
 
I understand very well that in the age of the internet, where children and adolescents have easy access to the network and all its contents, parents may be worried about the child's access to pornography, which in some ways is inevitable; it is however opportune that this access takes place at an age in which there is already a substantially adult sexuality (14-15 years), so that models of behavior are not exclusively imitative, because a model of exclusively imitative sexuality is substantially devoid of affectivity.
 
Parents are often afraid more than of pornography, of special friendships of their children, that instead have the undeniable merit of encouraging the growth of affectivity and the integration of affectivity and sexuality. Parents can and must talk about sexuality with their child but only avoiding calling him directly into question. Attitudes of an inquisitorial type or of real espionage, like looking through the child's private cards or tampering with his computer are perceived as invasive and violent and break the trust relationship between parents and children.
 
The prevention of child abuse is a very delicate subject because the overwhelming majority of abuses are perpetrated precisely by the persons to whom the child is entrusted or in any case by family members or by those who habitually frequent the child's home. It is obvious that under these conditions the repressive intervention of the penal law risks being completely circumvented. The golden rule to reduce the possibility of abuse is to never "entrust" the child to others and, if necessary, to entrust him to grandparents or to other family members whose behavior can be certain, and never in a systematic way or for long periods.
 
Creating an environment that tends to promote self-esteem and the development of an affective climate means in practice creating a family life in the full sense of the term, spending a lot of time with children, playing with them from an early age, gratifying them in comparison with adults and showing them concrete examples of affection between adults. There is nothing that can promote self-esteem and the development of the child's affectivity, such as seeing parents experiencing an emotional and collaborative atmosphere among them. I mean that the child's discomfort is very often the expression of a family hardship.
 
I have often asked myself about what can be done when a form of dysfunctional sexuality has been rooted for years and here I can only expose my thoughts that are far from indicating a concrete way of proceeding. Naturally I didn't ask myself what a psychologist can do, because a psychologist takes on a determined role that has its own rules, but just of what a friend can do. The variables involved are many and it is very difficult to arrive at a synthesis, I will limit myself to explain the most recurring problems. I will indicate with the letter "A" the guy who experiences a condition of sexual dysfunction and with the letter "B" his friend.
 
A typical situation: A has a fairly frank dialogue with B and slowly gets to talk with B about his sexuality, manifesting also the aspects that he considers transgressive. In this way A intends to evaluate above all the fidelity of B and his reactions. If B will be annoyed by those speeches or if he will go away not to be seen again, A will live the thing as another refusal towards him and this will confirm him in the idea of marginality and social isolation. If B will listen to A’s speeches in a patient way without reactions of amazement and will try to underline that the transgressive aspects are actually minimal, admitted and not granted that they exist, A will go on to a later phase, he will try to involve B beyond the level of dialogue, he will try to provoke him, to convince him to try some sexual contact, even very superficial, even by telephone, but it will be a sexual contact with those characteristics of transgression that B had considered little or no transgressive at all and here B will have the problem of accepting or not to take this step forward, because if B will accept, almost certainly A will try to take another step forward to involve B more and more, but if B refuses, A will take the opportunity to further depress and to further decrease his self-esteem. At the end of this process, which may take months, B will ask himself whether it is appropriate to give in to the insistence of A and here the answer is not at all obvious, B would not however have the prospect of starting a romance with A, since A is interested in B only on a sexual level, while B could prove a deep emotional involvement for A. B, however, is now aware that the relationship with A is played at another level and that, even if A is not involved at an affective level, or better in terms of couple relationships, B's answer can be very important precisely for A's personal balance, or better for his self-esteem and for overcoming depressive attitudes. B, on the other hand, knows very well that yielding to A once means inducing A to repeat that sexual experience an infinite number of times but always without couple affectivity.
 
Among the one-way answers: always accept the proposals of A, or say no clearly even if in the least aggressive way, there is a third way, that of an agreement limited especially to periods of maximum stress of A. The purpose of B cannot consist in trying to create a relationship with A, but must be identified in allowing A to achieve greater serenity and greater self-esteem and therefore to live, even towards B an emotional dimension "without couple relationship" but anyway strongly stabilizing. As it’s obvious in this path there are many possible variations and decisions don’t belong to B but are taken together by A and B not with agreements made of words but through significant behavior, as it happens in every important interpersonal relationship.
 
I would like to end my discussion on dysfunctional sexuality with a clarification: dysfunctional sexuality is often found in people in other respects realized despite their low self-esteem and, I would add, in people who are forced to live lives very different from what they wished, even if they have achieved, in these unwished lives, notable social and economic successes.
 
With these people it is certainly possible to build affective relationships sometimes very important, that their characteristic non-aggressiveness and their tendency to maintain stable relationships, even if not close, make in fact often very pleasant and gratifying.
 
If there is one thing from which in any case, it is necessary to refrain it is from judging, because this would further decrease self-esteem and lead these people to more clearly depressive states. 

Speaking both with people with dysfunctional sexuality and with their friends, I noticed that respect and affection subsist between them. I have also noted that some problematic situations tend to resolve when, on a general and not specifically sexual level, self-esteem rises and with it the substantial level of socialization. The real danger is the state of abandonment in which the individual is absolutely alone with his depression because then the incentives to reevaluate oneself and to understand that one is really important at least for someone are completely lacking.
_________

If you like, you can join the discussion on this post on Gay Project Forum: http://gayprojectforum.altervista.org/T-gays-and-dysfunctional-sex