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Questioning and Appreciate Advice

Discussion in 'Sexual Orientation' started by Quest1934, Mar 13, 2018.

  1. Quest1934

    Regular Member

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    Hi all,

    I'm new to this community and would appreciate any light you all can shed on questions that have been dominating my thoughts for the past few months.

    The TL:grin:R version is: ostensibly straight/bi man, late 20s with hx of mild OCD, terribly addicted to tg, tf, and hetero hypno porn, 2 years into his first relationship, so connected to this woman who makes me so happy, but less than expected physical spark, no prior sexual experience, has always been turned on by beautiful men, now wondering if attraction to women is simply aesthetic and emotional rather than physical. Was considering getting engaged and am terrified that I have been repressing a gay orientation all these years, I will drag the both of us into a doomed relationship. I have been obsessing over it and testing my reactions to ideas and people constantly (like any good OCD-er would). The alternative, as a Catholic man, would be to live openly homosexual but single and celibately, which is a lonely road but something I could deal with.

    I've been addicted to tf, tg, and hetero hypno ertoica for a long time, and am unsure if this was a way to deal with latent homoxesual attraction, or if the relentless imagination of sex from the female perspective has gradually introduced a fetishization of maleness.

    The question is complicated because I have a tendency to attack and question anything that's important to me. I do have a history of obsessions and compensatory rituals, mostly surrounding sexuality and relationships. I do not want to throw away a relationship with someone I feel so connected to and so at peace with because of a stupid psychological hangup. I'm trying to detox, so to speak, from the tg and tf erotica and started attending Sexaholics Anonymous, but whenever I get another pang of doubt I'm sorely tempted to find oblivion in erotica and masturbation. This whole process is interfering with my ability to focus on my employment.

    I appreciate any wisdom you all could share from experience or just from compassion and understanding.

    ---------------------------------

    If you're interested in a longer version of my sexual history, here are some details:

    My first exposure to the idea of sex came when I joined the Boy Scouts in the 6th grade. I was given a short book on sexual harassment and assault; it was supposed to be a "don't let people do this to you" book, but I took it as a "list of horrible things you could do to people." I was one year older than the youngest boys in the troop and I was terrified that I was a pedophile and would somehow hurt them. Every time I was a troop meeting I had an erection, and I didn't know whether it was from attraction, from fear, or from the random erections early adolescent boys have.

    In my junior-high years I remember being around certain boys in junior high and experiencing an erection and a breathless warmth because of their beauty, which confused me. I had "crushes" on girls but they were always clean attractions to personality or aesthetic beauty (which was what I aspired to as a Catholic teen). I *was* turned on by erotic descriptions of women and by erotic heterosexual scenes in books, and there was a brief yearlong period in 6th grade when I loosened up and allowed myself to be turned on by women without repressing it; I subsequently discovered porn, became disgusted with myself, and tightened up again.

    In early highschool I discovered erotica and porn in a weird, abnormal way. I was reading a book of Greek myths and was turned on by the story of Actaeon. Actaeon is a hunter who comes upon Artemis bathing naked; as punishment, she turns him into a stag, and he's consumed by his own hounds. As a child and before I knew what sex was I had been turned on to these kinds of transformation stories. I went online and found very graphic, very adult collections of transformation erotica that I ate up. At some point, I became disgusted with myself for reading something that seemed to verge on bestiality, so I restricted myself to tg stories because, ironically, they seemed the most normal or straight: stories that lingered on luscious descriptions of the female form. The erotica immediately became an addiction, and I tried to wall it off from real life and real relationships. I am wondering whether I sterilized my heterosexual crushes because of this, and kept myself from developing any sort of true, actionable sexuality, homo or hetero, while I satisfied this kink online.

    My sexuality went on hold during college and for a few years after; I had some mild attraction to a few girls and none that I remember to boys, unless you count a warm admiration for my roommate that was never, at the time, conceived as sexual. A few years ago I moved and found a new very handsome energetic roommate, and spent a few weeks nervous that I would poison the roomie relationship with homosexual attraction, but the fear passed and was forgotten. As the years wore on falling "in love" with someone became an obsession. I spent a year in grad school head-over-heels (emotionally, and to a lesser degree physically) for a girl who was a close friend but unavailable to me, but as soon as I decided that I loved her I began doubting myself, I spent a year relentlessly obsessing for hours and hours every day over whether I really felt anything for her at all. I mention this quasi-imagined relationship only because it is an example of the obsessiveness and a pattern I don't want to repeat.

    I am currently two years into a relationship with a wonderful woman with whom I feel an incredible closeness and kinship, and who makes me so happy. She is the first person I've been at all physically intimate with, though we have not had sex because of our Catholic religion. In the past I have doubted our relationship because I worried there was a lack of "feeling" on my part - I was comparing it to the crush I discussed above, which seemed bright and full now that I was no longer obsessing over it. I bought a diamond several months ago, and very soon I was besieged by doubts that I was gay: noticing my reaction to physical touch with men, comparing it to my reaction to her, trying out fantasizing about old roommates and gauging my response. I have always found penises much more attractive than vaginas, and remembering this was unsettling.

    So now I am wound up in a knot and am hoping you all can help me with any insight you can provide. I have talked to my family (which is understanding but biased by their conservative Catholic faith), and they are worried I'm just repeating my usual pattern of obsessive undermining of something important to me. I've talked to a counselor who wants me to go out and experiment, but also feels like the porn and obsessions have to be dealt with first. I'm distraught and value any help this community can give. Thank you.
     
  2. Chip

    Board Member Admin Team Advisor Full Member

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    HI,

    My first question: Are you in treatment (psychologist or psychiatrist or both) for your OCD? If not, it really sounds like that's the place to start. I don't think you can effectively unwind the negative influence the OCD is having without getting treatment first. If you are getting treatment, it doesn't seem that it's very effective. So I would say that needs to be sorted out first before you can meaningfully expect to figure out the orientation piece.

    My second question: If you masturbate without porn, what do you fantasize about? Porn is a notoriously unreliable indicator of sexual orientation, while masturbation fantasies tend to be pretty accurate.
     
  3. Quest1934

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    Hi Chip,

    Yes, am getting treatment on both fronts for obsessive thinking, and have been for several years, though only just started to really talk about the obsession aspect with a counselor. I know I'm being impatient by looking for any answers in the meantime, but fundamental uncertainty that I cannot share with my significant other with such high stakes has been hard.

    I rarely fantasize without erotica/porn, but sometimes I fantasize about my SO because of my affection for her, oftentimes I would fantasize about the tg transformations I read about, and in the last few weeks have started fantasizing about guys, which has felt good (in a way that's distressing afterwards, of course). IDK, I'll have to think about what that means. Thanks for your advice.
     
  4. Chip

    Board Member Admin Team Advisor Full Member

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    I do think that getting matters under control with the obsessive thinking is the first step. I suggest the book "Brain Lock", written by a specialist with years of experience treating OCD, as a good resource.

    I would suggest letting go of porn for a few weeks and using exclusively fantasy to fuel your masturbation experiences. What you might also try is alternating in different sessions between thinking about guys and thinking about girls. Thinking about guys, as you've pointed out, may cause distress after the fact, but what's going to be important is what you are experiencing in the moment, as this is where you're drawing on your root attractions. If you continue to find that fantasizing about guys creates stronger arousal than thinking about girls, then it is likely that you are closer to the homosexual end of the spectrum. But again, I think waiting for clarity with your obsessive thoughts is probably the first step.
     
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