Thursday, April 23, 2009

New brother K

Brother K has SSA and is younger than me. [I use caps to denote if a brother is younger (b) or older (B) than me.]

I love brother K like I love my own brother, like I love my own son, like I love my own "boy-soul" within me that is fast growing up.  

When I think of brother K, I get an aching in my heart.  I long to see him come to experience God's full healing in his life, to the point where he no longer seeks out men in a sexual way to find the male-love he so needs and deserves.

Brother K feels things for me that I have felt for Brother A.  It's uncanny to me how similar they are.  Brother K wants to be hugged, loved, and cherished by me--just the way that I have wanted to be hugged, loved, and cherished by Brother A.  Brother K wants wants me to hold his hand, like a father to a son--just the way Brother A's hand turned into my father's hand when he held mine.

I was struck when brother K said that it would break his heart if the intimacy between him and I turned sexual. I said the same thing to Brother A just a few days ago! Only I was a lot more dramatic about it: "I'd kill myself if our relationship ever became sexual."  (Brother A assured me that he could be trusted.)

I understand brother K. This is not a platitude. I really, really understand brother K. And I love him. Like Brother A loves me.

I wonder. How many of us men with SSA struggles are longing for such deep non-sexual male-to-male intimacy? Half? Three-quarters? All?


  1. In my experience, I'd say half. I achieved a lot of protection and male-intimacy from my own older brother, who in many ways (being 14 years old than me) is like a second father.

    Your statement about killing yourself is very, very concerning. I know it was an exaggeration, and certainly if you fell into a sexual relationship it would be a very trying time, but I do think a lot of your writing sounds like you're getting a little too emotionally-enmeshed, too quickly. I mean, have you even met K or A in person?

    All the best, Jay.

  2. I share Jay's concern about the "I'd kill myself" statement, and I think I share Jay's perception that there's a level of emotional involvement, or emotional intensity going on in these relationships that-- I struggle to put it into words-- it just sounds like it could end up in some unhealthy place.

  3. If I hadn't written the words myself, I would be concerned for the writer too. Like I said, "I was a lot more dramatic about it."

    As for the emotional intensity, it's definitely there. But I don't personally use the term "enmeshment" because it is conceptualized out of a perspective that emphasizes distance and pathologizes closeness.

    I prefer the term "attachment" because it offers a much better researched construct. I won't bore you with the details. You can look up "attachment theory" if you are interested. So I would be more prone to accepting the idea that I am rather "anxiously attached" to Brother A... at this time.

    Jay, if you read my Summary Reflections again, you will be reminded that I have met Brother A--this is how all the emotional intensity started, but together with the healing experience!

    My own little emerging theory is: (1) I have been fearful-avoidant in my attachment to men; (2) I met a man who is extremely healthy and secure in his own attachment style, who offers to love me; (3) I am now moving from fearful-avoidant attachment to secure attachment.

    My blog is for raw processing of emotions. If you met and talked to me in person, you would never know that the real me is the same as this blogging me. What you read here is my heart, completely open and vulnerable. And I can do this because I am anonymous. Tyr it. Who knows? You might find something interesting in your own emotional processing too.

    Hey... I don't mean to come across as harsh. I really do appreciate your concerns, and I'm interpreting them as loving gestures, even if you (both of you) don't use the word "love" to describe your feelings for me.

    I'd like to say that I love you, but I don't want to freak you out. You might think I'm becoming enmeshed with you. That would be terrible now, wouldn't it? ;-)

    Thanks for loving me, even if it is only virtual.

  4. Hey, this is Brother K. TCM, thank you so much for your lovingkindness. You're such a beautiful brother with a very beautiful heart and it's alsways great talking to you. You always bring things back to Jesus, which is what I love about our connections. Too, I would rather kill myself or harm myself before harming you because to harm you by falling for you or doing anything to make you stumble would cause me no amount of grief. I know that if we did anything bad with each other I could probably never share anything with you again, and that would bring me a grief that would devastate me.
    I look forward to the day when we can meet face to face and hug one another. That'd be awesome. Your love of me is healing some of my wounds, and it means that you care so much even over a long distance. When we're in heaven I want to reserve a spot close to you. I love you so much, brother.

    To Kurt T and Jay, there's no hanky panky going on here. It's all good!

  5. all, that would be 100% of me