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How much of an effect do you think my upbringing has on my sexual confusion?

Discussion in 'Sexual Orientation' started by skloorrpt, Aug 2, 2021.

  1. skloorrpt

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    Recently, I was thinking a little bit about my upbringing and the effect that might have on my current situation. I guess at the moment if I had to choose a label I would probably say I'm bi, but even that I don't feel like I can say for sure because I still have my moments of doubt. This doubt is usually triggered when I have an urge to watch straight porn, or by the fact that I often have trouble keeping it up in the bedroom with someone of the same sex (I think it could just be a weird anxiety thing, but I'm not sure). If I am bisexual I'm starting to worry that the doubt might just be something that comes with being bi and it might never go away.

    Recently I was trying to remember the first time I ever heard of someone being gay, or when I realized that was even a possibility. I don't remember it well, but I'm pretty sure I was at home with my mother one time when she was watching some show on TV. One of the hosts of this show happened to be gay and I remember him saying something about his "partner". I was a little confused why he didn't just say girlfriend or wife. I very vaguely remember asking my mom, and she explained that it was because his partner was not a woman and I'm sure it came along with some explanation why this was wrong. Anyways I'm pretty sure that was the first time I ever even realized two people of the same sex could be in a relationship or have feelings for each other. I was so young, probably 8 or 9 at the oldest, and this is such a vague memory I barely even remember if it actually happened this way if at all lol.

    Since I went to Catholic school from K-12 I had to take various classes involving "my" religion. Once I was in middle school and high school, sex and sexuality started becoming a topic that was discussed in these classes. Everyone probably knows how Catholics feel about sex. In short, what these classes taught me about sex is that it's immoral unless its between a married, opposite sex couple that are doing it with the intention of having children. I think because of this I've always felt a little shameful about my sexuality even when I wasn't so confused and did just think I was straight. I think I've always sort of felt as though sex is a bad or immoral thing because of this.

    I don't consider myself Catholic anymore, but I think this still causes problems for me especially as my only sexual experiences so far have been with a man. Even though I have enjoyed them and I want to have more I still feel a little weird about it now that I've had those experiences. It's almost like after they happen, and sometimes while they happen I feel weird because I'm having or have had sex with another man almost like the fact that he is a guy is a bit of a distraction.

    I guess this is just a quick thread about something that has been on my mind a lot lately and I wanted to see if anyone had any input or similar experiences.
     
  2. caden0803

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    I’ve always believed people have the right to be who they are if it’s not hurting anyone. Still it’s important to tread lightly on who you share that information with because not everyone will approve. Hope this short explanation is the kind of input that you’re looking for.
     
  3. skloorrpt

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    One thing that I was going to mention is the whole Catholic idea of love vs. lust. I think this is the reason why I did, and sometimes still do, feel so guilty or ashamed when it comes to any sexual desires I might have. I remember in my classes it was taught that any type of sexual desire or activity that is purely for pleasure can't be real love or attraction and instead is some kind of perverted lust.

    Like I've said, I'm not Catholic anymore. I don't care what anyone else believes as long as they aren't using it to justify being an asshole, but I'd consider myself opposed to quite a lot of Christian values. I think this idea of sexual desires being perverted is what causes so many problems for me. I think it makes me feel like any feelings I might have for men are somehow just some strange, perverted desires I have simply because I'm horny. I do have doubts about my "attraction" to men because it does sometimes feel like I'm just horny and the idea of being with someone of the same sex is somehow more exciting or interesting just because it's still pretty new to me.
     
  4. PatrickUK

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    If we are exposed to negative messages about sex and sexuality from a young age, it can seep right to the core of who we are and build up layers and layers of shame. It doesn't even have to be an overtly homophobic comment that triggers all of these feelings. Any sign of disapproval can have a deep and profound effect on a child, to the extent that he/she may begin the process of hiding feelings and creating a false narrative to regain approval. Many people within the LGBT+ community will fully understand what this means and how it works.

    Disapproval on the basis of religion is particularly damaging, because it suggests to a child that the highest being (God) lacks love and respect for them... so if God can't accept them, nobody will. In reality this is a load of bollocks and the teaching of the Catholic Church (and other churches) is all over the place in these matters; full of contradictory double-talk and biblically illiterate.

    If you identify as bi, you need to hold the tension of being attracted to the opposite sex and same sex in harmony. Although you may feel predominantly attracted to one sex over the other, you accept that it's not cast in stone and live with it as a fact. That's the very nature of being bisexual. The fact that you watch straight porn is a natural part of your bisexual identity, rather than something to stress about, don't you agree? The bedroom issues could also be attributed to those negative childhood messages about sex, e.g. 'you should only be having sex for the purposes of procreation'... by which standard, 99% of the human population is mired in sin. I don't know any straight person who only has sex to make babies and that includes people of the catholic faith.
     
  5. skloorrpt

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    I suppose the problem I have is that I don't even know if I'm actually bisexual. I just say that because it seems to fit based only on the kinds of porn I watch. If I were to go off of my actual sexual experiences that would make me exclusively gay. Sometimes I feel like I just want to be gay because it would make me seem more unique or something. Obviously I'm not ready to come out, but sometimes I sort of "try on" a label for a few days, at least in my head and that can seem nice. I don't really feel gay or bi, but I'm not sure what I mean by that. I guess I just feel like I don't really "fit in" with the LGBTQ community, but that's probably all based of of inaccurate, offensive stereotypes I used to believe. I'm not really involved with the community in any way other than this site as I don't really want to raise any suspicion. It's just something I don't really want anyone else to know about until I'm sure about it myself. Unfortunately my mother did find out that I'm not really sure about my sexuality, I told her not to bring it up to anyone (including me lol), but the fact that she knows is definitely anxiety inducing. I don't think she's told anyone else, at least I hope not.

    When it comes to the bedroom issues I think it's more nerves than anything. A few of the times we've tried we were not the only ones home, and I think that caused some anxiety for me because when we've been alone it's gone much better. I think afterwards is maybe when the negativity about sex and homosexuality gets to me. There have been times after fooling around where I have thoughts like "wow, did I actually do that" or "that was a little weird" even though I enjoyed it while it was happening. Part of that might also be because I've known this guy since middle school, way before either of us had probably even considered we might not be straight.
     
  6. Chip

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    One of the toughest things to process when we're dealing with any concepts about sex, whether it's premarital sex, same-sex experiences or even masturbation, is that our perspectives about shame and guilt are entirely based on social construction.

    There's inherently nothing wrong with enjoying sexual pleasure, about doing so with another person of any sex, or doing so by yourself. But we get these messages from our parents, media, organized religion, and so forth that there's something inherently shameful or embarrassing about sex, our sexual selves, the parts of our body associated with sex, that it has an impact on how we view sex.

    One of the best ways to address this is simply to look at where the rational, logical basis for your beliefs come from, and then look, in the abstract, whether there's anything to feel shameful about. It's a challenging exploration, but it can often be very helpful.
     
  7. out2019

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    Before I accepted myself, I had a couple of drunken hookups, I started to give a blow job and really liked it, and felt an intimacy I never felt with a woman but then .. fear set in and freaked out and stopped. So yes this can happen.

    I was not raised in a religious household i was raised in a secular liberal one in a gay friendly city but I still had a ton of shame about being gay that let to repression and denial for years.

    Until I finally accepted myself, I never realized how I shameful I felt about my sexual and romantic longings to be with a man, shame made me treat it like something 'wrong' with me.