I am bisexual and I am a man

My time with my T this morning has me rattled and I need to process via this post. Accepting that I am bisexual has been a rollercoaster of emotions as I think I have accepted it and then despair. My despair focuses exclusively on how it makes me different from the majority of men who are heterosexual. Sometimes I feel different, 'less than' and apart from the community of men.

Since I was a little boy, I wanted to be one of the guys. But I never did. I shrunk back from other boys because I wasn’t good at sports and my emotionally abusive mom fostered and took advantage of my “feminine” qualities. So I felt different and apart from other boys. That feeling has continued into adulthood as I consider myself different from men. Accepting my sexuality has been hard as I have lamented that it permanently cements my separation from most men.

Today during my session, as I talked about this I doubled over on the couch with a panic attack and then began to sob. Then my counselor did something he has never done before. He came and sat next to me on the couch and wrapped both of his arms around me, with my head effectively in his lap as I sobbed. A heterosexual man who knows about my sexuality was willing to embrace me. He is not disgusted by my sexuality. He does not consider my sexuality a defect. He does not consider me ‘less than’ him or other men. It was very risky for him to touch a client that way. He thinks I matter enough and cares for me enough that he was willing to take that risk. A heterosexual man thinks I matter enough that he was willing to take a risk.

That experience is already seared into my brain. How can I ever consider myself less than or apart from the community of men? Would some heterosexual men disqualify me or consider me ‘less than’ because of my sexuality – undoubtedly. But what do I care? The most influential person in my life cares about me and has told me in words and now through an embrace that I am not less than him or any man. I am bisexual and I am part of the community of men.
 

MO-Survivor

Registrant
Wow @BelovedSon. That session with your T had to be so meaningful. I think I received that validation when I was 18, and the couple I got to know in college just loved on me - even knowing the CSA mess I was at the time. It is powerful, and goes really far into bringing healing. All that shame, all that isolation & loneliness we have carried - can fall away when someone demonstrates unconditional love. We think we deserve for everyone to leave us, to run away - and until someone shows us otherwise, this belief remains.

Interestingly, my T and I got into talking about sexual identity a bit today. I had a day of clarity after the significant healing events of the last couple weeks - where I didn't have all the SSA thoughts, the repeating the abuse thoughts, etc. invading my mind. For a day, I felt freed up from all that. I felt like I could claim my sexuality as my own (think I said this out loud, by myself). I felt like I could have undistracted heterosexual thoughts. It made me happy. But I think I knew at the time that it wouldn't last. There is too much hard-wired in our brains. I think we just cycle through these things - with more and more freedom, and more and more self-determination sexually as we go.

We talked about a spectrum where hypersexuality (where almost anything goes in terms of sexual thoughts / attraction) and asexuality exist at opposite ends. I think I have lived most of my life on one side of that spectrum or the other. Because of the shame, the guilt, etc. that comes with the hypersexual side of things, my response (based on my values and sense of morality) is typically to swing all the way to the asexual side: wanting to shut off all sexual feelings, thoughts, and desires. It's like completely closing off a spigot. But she made this distinction:
  • All humans (unless there is some physiological issue or unless they are suppressing their sexuality) live with the spigot open, with sexual feelings, thoughts, and desires having a pretty free-flow. This is normal - and is pretty descriptive of the middle ground between hypersexuality and asexuality
  • But all humans also can choose what to do when those feelings, thoughts and desires come. So if I have sexual thoughts about a woman I see in public, on TV, or whatever - do I then decide to go look at porn and feed those desires? Or do I redirect those feelings toward my wife in some manner?
Anyway - not sure if that makes sense or is helpful at all, but it was insightful to me. Of course, for multiple reasons (guilt, shame, CSA related fears, training myself to live with the spigot closed off), it is scary for me to leave that spigot open.
 

Jeremy Doe

Registrant
My time with my T this morning has me rattled and I need to process via this post. Accepting that I am bisexual has been a rollercoaster of emotions as I think I have accepted it and then despair. My despair focuses exclusively on how it makes me different from the majority of men who are heterosexual. Sometimes I feel different, 'less than' and apart from the community of men.

Since I was a little boy, I wanted to be one of the guys. But I never did. I shrunk back from other boys because I wasn’t good at sports and my emotionally abusive mom fostered and took advantage of my “feminine” qualities. So I felt different and apart from other boys. That feeling has continued into adulthood as I consider myself different from men. Accepting my sexuality has been hard as I have lamented that it permanently cements my separation from most men.

Today during my session, as I talked about this I doubled over on the couch with a panic attack and then began to sob. Then my counselor did something he has never done before. He came and sat next to me on the couch and wrapped both of his arms around me, with my head effectively in his lap as I sobbed. A heterosexual man who knows about my sexuality was willing to embrace me. He is not disgusted by my sexuality. He does not consider my sexuality a defect. He does not consider me ‘less than’ him or other men. It was very risky for him to touch a client that way. He thinks I matter enough and cares for me enough that he was willing to take that risk. A heterosexual man thinks I matter enough that he was willing to take a risk.

That experience is already seared into my brain. How can I ever consider myself less than or apart from the community of men? Would some heterosexual men disqualify me or consider me ‘less than’ because of my sexuality – undoubtedly. But what do I care? The most influential person in my life cares about me and has told me in words and now through an embrace that I am not less than him or any man. I am bisexual and I am part of the community of men.
Hey @BelovedSon ,

So glad to see you had such a moving and impactful session with the T. I know when I came to terms with my sexuality... 4 years ago, it was a game changer in the way I viewed the world. For so long, I denied and hated that part of myself. I always thought that I would grow out of it. I mean, I liked girls, why was I also attracted to guys. It was really hard for me to process. And then I came to terms with it and it was just like, "wow."

I'd challenge you on it separating you from most men though. I believe whole heartedly that all of sexuality is a spectrum, just a like anything. And instead of you viewing yourself as not part of the male community, or the hetero community, think of yourself as a member of both communities. You really have the world as your oyster. Beeches, gyms, movies, television, and other media are all more accessible when you don't give yourself socialized constraints. Lifestyle and sexuality are two different things and just because you're in tune with your bisexuality does not mean you have to choose to live a homo or a hetero lifestyle. You can live both. Now, with long term relationships, you may have to choose, or you may not. It really depends on the dynamics of the relationship.

But suffice to say, welcome to the bisexual community. We're more common than you think. And being honest and upfront with that aspect of yourself is freeing and will free your mental and emotional energy to tackle more important subjects. So congrats and welcome.


Best,
Jeremy
 

flying

Registrant
Thanks for the share Belovedson. I have struggled with my label of bisexual for a long time. Currently I am not using a label. I am embracing myself, saying affirmations. It's ok to like guys, it's ok to like women. Related to what MO said, it's ok to be sexual, it's ok to be nonsexual. I love myself. It's ok to be me.

Thanks again for sharing. I have spent years trying to be part of a bisexual community, finding how I fit in the world. I am married to a woman who knows everything about me.

Peace in your journey.
 
Even heterosexuality is not the same for every heterosexual man. I think this is important to remember. But I also think it's not really helpful for me to say. I actually am commenting because I have heterosexual friends in my life who have extended hugs and other types of healing contact to me. I'm gay, and I never thought that would ever be something I'd experience with a straight man, let alone straight men. Yet, times have changed and I've been very lucky to find straight men who are different from ones that hurt me when I was younger. Their presence in my life has been very healing for me. I can see how that moment would have been very helpful for you in your therapy session.
 

brother2none

Staff member
If I were with you I'd give you a hug also. And I know that as you can build your support and friendship with other bisexual men, and the many allied expressions of sexuality, that the feeling that you do not fit will subside and be replaced with feelings of acceptance. Wondering how you can challenge the myths you hold about yourself in the face of the support you have and will receive (and give - there is value in giving support).
 

CarbonTiger

Registrant
I applaud your declaration, you should reclaim your power back! You get to decide when and how as it is yours.

If it weren't awkward, like others have stated, I would hug you as well.

Thank you for sharing and having the courage to post this. Be well @BelovedSon :)
 
I speak about confusion both regarding gender and sexual orientation simply because the trauma I experienced made clarity about such things impossible. I've written in this forum about my journey with crossdressing. Carrying that secret my whole life kept me stewing in shame. Finding compassion for self and learning healing is not dependent of erasing our life experiences and preferences. I know the crossdressing is rooted in trauma, as were sexual encounters with men in XXX video arcades. I don't feel a need to return to arcades to embrace who I am and how I got here, but allowing myself to "dress" from time to time has proven to be a relief. I won't apply a label to myself or claim that this behavior will remain part of my life, but then I won't condemn it either whether I indulge myself or not. I know the behavior is one way I have of soothing myself, which I guess was what my mother was trying to do in the crib when I was an infant. Then it terrorized me... now it soothes me.

Sexual identity challenges seem to come with the territory for trauma survivors. It is easy to shame ourselves... most of us have done that for a lifetime. Now we're trying to find a bit of compassion for ourselves and for what we've needed to do to survive. This seems to be an essential part of the healing journey we are each pursuing in our own way. You're fortunate to have such a fine therapist to help you along the way @BelovedSon. You're doing wonderful work. Thanks for sharing it with all of us.
 
I had a good session with my T today and commented that since he came and sat alongside me on the couch I have not again despaired that I am less of a man. As @Visitor says, perhaps 'old friends will come to visit' and I will one day think I am less of a man because of my sexuality. But I will have that memory of a man taking me into his arms on behalf of masculinity as a reminder that I belong among the community of men.

I told my T today that I don't want to simply 'accept' my sexuality. I told him that I am moving the goal posts and that I want to appreciate and be grateful for it. My heterosexual counselor's face lights up when he talks about the beauty of sexual diversity. He speaks with conviction that it adds to the beauty of the world. I want to love who I am the way he loves who I am and appreciates how my way of being adds to the beauty of the world.

@My_Mayberry I have two straight men in my life who regularly part with me by saying 'I love you' and giving me a hug. What amazing men! My counselor says that is 'normal' it just isn't typical.

Thanks to everyone who responded. I really appreciate the love and support.
 
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