Monday, February 9, 2009

Experimentation & Accountability

Over the last week, I have allowed myself to look at porn several times. I wanted to let myself "loose" so that I could find out, without any shred of doubt, if I am truly changing.

This is what I've discovered.  5 points.

1. I *am* less attracted to men sexually.

I can see men having all kinds of sexual acts either alone or together, but I see it not so much with a sense of deprivation within me. I don't feel like I want or need the same. I see it as a little comical that the men should want to do something like that with each other rather than with women.

I used to find the right look in a man, and then fantasize having sexual relations with him.  No more.  Even the most perfect looking guy is just another guy to me -- a buddy.  Not a person who can really give me something by having sex with me.

This is a huge change. And I'm not pretending it.  It really is just happening.  And I am not sure exactly what has led to this change.  I have some ideas.

2. I am still able to get aroused by seeing men engage in sexual acts.

I can get aroused. Not quite as immediately as before, but I can. It's no longer an arousal that draws me to participate. It's more an arousal of plain sexual excitement. It's more... pure.  Innocent. Like a young kid would get an erection at the sight of another boy doing something sexual, but neither understanding what is happening to them except that natural feeling of sexual excitement. There is no need to masturbate in this kind of arousal.

3. I feel a strong need to have my male sexual-ness be affirmed by another man.

I don't mean just being affirmed as a guy. I mean specifically having a man--a straight man, by the way--directly approve me of my male sexual-ness. At the most "homosexual" end, it would be having the two of us masturbate together, but not needing to touch each other.  At the most "heterosexual" end would be having a coach-like figure scrutinize me masturbating or even having sex with a woman, and then give me a good score for it, and a pat on the back.  Somewhere in the middle would be for us to have sex together with a girl.

I want affirmation that I am male, at the very physiologically sexual level, and have other guys respect and like me because of my ability to carry out the sex act as a man.  That we like each other and affirm each other's sexual-ness.  The epitome of this experience is to have another man affirm me and even join me in orgasm (but not join me by having sex with me).  In other words, I don't want the other man's manhood, I want his brotherhood to affirm me where I feel least affirmed -- in my sexuality.

I think to the straight guy, this sounds gay. But in my mind, there is a world of difference. It's more like I am a young teenage boy who is just maturing sexually, and having some friends gather around to connect, affirm, and learn from each other by experimentation and comparison.  Very different from wanting to have sex with other guys.  This kind of activity leads the boys towards feeling good about themselves and then branching off into learning about girls.

4. I don't like most of the girls in porn.

I cannot objectify women. To see a woman go "ooh" and "ahh" while pretending to enjoy giving oral sex is simply fake.  Women want to be loved, to be cherished, to be held and told that they are beautiful.  The stuff in porn is for stupid guys (sorry, but it is).  Guys whose understanding of women don't go further than the length of their boner.  A girl who is begging a guy to give it to her for the sheer physicality... does any half-witted educated man really want that in a woman to love?

I suppose this is why I find myself most attracted to pictures of a man and a woman having sex that is in a close physical embrace, rather than the mere pounding of genitals.

5. Porn is still dangerous, no matter my orientation.

If I am not careful, I can get stuck in same-sex attraction by allowing myself to keep looking at porn, even if what I am looking for is more affirmation than attraction.

What I am afraid of is that if I stop looking at porn, will my same-sex attraction (as opposed to same-sex affirmation) come back?

I think I need to remain accountable to stopping porn.

Saturday, February 7, 2009

Father Figures: Real and Imagined

In my last post, I talked about Charles Ingalls. How he was my hero of a father-figure and how he became the source of my many objects of fantasy. 

What made the fantasy more attractive was that Michael Landon, the actor, was such a hunk of a man and portrayed that role so well. He was handsome, strong, fatherly, manly, and sensitive all at the same time.

What I didn't realize was, his son, Michael Landon, Jr., who is about my age, was having the exact same perceptions of him--not in front of the TV, but on the set itself. I found this out from a Christianity Today article. [link]

"He was my everything as I was growing up," says Michael. "I had a certain vision of my father, a vision I think was perpetuated by the role he was playing [i.e. Charles Ingalls] at the time and by the way the public perceived him. He was the perfect dad." 

The Christianity Today article continued:

But that perfect image was shattered one afternoon when Michael came home from high school. He was met at the door by an uncle, who had clearly been crying. The uncle sat Michael and his sister Leslie down on the couch and broke the news.

"Your dad has left," he said. "Your mother is upstairs. She's a wreck, and she needs you to comfort her."

Today, Landon says he was blindsided by the news. He later learned that his father had been having an affair with someone who worked behind the scenes of Little House, and that unfaithfulness led to his parents' divorce.

The unimaginable had happened: Pa Ingalls, a promise keeper long before Promise Keepers was cool, had had a tryst and split from his wife. A Hollywood scandal indeed.

"My world was completely shattered," says Landon, who was 15 at the time.

That led to Michael Jr.'s foray into the world of rebellion and drugs, until his mother brought him to church where he met God and gave his life over to Jesus.

So, the real man behind the character was just as flawed as my father, and crushed the spirit of his little boy just like my father crushed mine.

I don't really know what to say about this little finding of mine today.  Something about hope. 
  • Hope that I am not the only broken one -- even the real son of "Charles Ingalls" himself was badly broken by the same man who fueled so much of my fantasies.  
  • Hope that such a high level of perfection in manhood is just a fantasy, and thus, I can let go of trying to find it, either in other men or in myself.
I don't know how this relates to my own embrace of manhood. I know it's related at some level, but I can't quite pinpoint how.

Wednesday, February 4, 2009

Pubic Hair, Papa Charles, and a Big Fat Wedgie

The bottle on the bureau winked at me and whispered, "restore your hair and look great again!"

Making sure no one was around, I pulled down my pants, poured some of the lotion onto my palm, and rubbed it on my pubic area.

Then I waited. And waited. I checked everyday to see if any little hairs had sprouted.


I was 9.


Fast forward a couple of years.

I noticed a little something on my pubic area one day. If I stood at just the right angle, it almost looked like hair.

Sidetrack: You know Charles Ingalls? Yeah, that incredibly loving and wonderful father on Little House on the Prairie? Well, I had a crush on him. Or so I thought. I don't think I ever masturbated to thoughts of him, but I know that I wanted to be near him and follow him wherever he went. He talked to his children, listened to them, he even hugged and cried with them.

Anyway, on one fateful fishing trip day, I thought that maybe if I tried, I could have my own Charles Ingalls in dad.

"Guess what, dad?"

"What?" he mumbled as we maneuvered across the rocks.

"I think my penis has hair on it."

"What?!" he said louder with an irritated face--the same scowl that I have inherited.

"I think my penis has hair on it," I repeated, a little embarrassed yet hopeful.

"Humph," he mumbled, then kept walking.

There! I did it. I connected with dad, I thought to myself and smiled a little on the inside.

I have pictures from that fishing trip. My older brothers and their friends were slim and handsome as can be. But there was a grotesque figure standing amongst them with his back to the camera. A fat, ugly kid with pork chop calves and a big ass with a perpetual wedgie. To this day, I cannot look at that picture without shame engulfing me.

I don't know what it was I did that day. I can't remember. Something an insecure and love-starved 11-year-old might do to get a little attention.

"STOP IT!" my father yelled publically. "You're already sprouting pubic hair! So stop being an annoying, immature brat!"

It was loud enough that I swore everyone heard it. Loud enough to resound through a lifetime of dread and self-hatred.

And so, I found comfort instead in my made-believe world with men like papa Charles Ingalls holding me, comforting me, speaking tenderly to me. I would masturbate, feeling warmed and loved.


Fast forward three decades to today.

I went online and searched for a picture of "wedgie."  This is what I found.

I think they call this male-bonding. A bunch of guys reveling in their maleness, affirming each other that their muscles, their sweat, their stink, their wedgies, their sex are all good.

I've been in a couple of situations like this. I've even tried to be one of the guys. Some party where there was some drugs and sex going on. I danced with one girl and pretended to make out with her. I was not in the least bit interested. But I knew the guys were looking. I did it for them. 

As I held her close to me, the girl had a look in her eyes that said, "take me, I'm all yours." But I did nothing. I had nothing to give her. My wedgie, along with my immature penis and reprimanded pubic hair, had been gutted out and tossed on the rocks to rot forever on that fateful fishing trip day.


things are changing.

Because of you, and you, and You, things are changing.

I want so badly to be accepted as a man--sweat, stink, wedgie and all. I want to masturbate with a bunch of guys together and have them say, "dude, you're gonna make some girl one happy bitch!" And then ejaculate and laugh together.

Yes, I know. Not very Christian. But I don't care. I want to experience having my man-sex affirmed with other guys. I will not edit out these words. 

Not yet.