Saturday, September 5, 2009

Time For A Group? [And Short Summary Reflection]

I have come to know a few people since I opened up this blog--especially during my "raw/authentic" writing period. They have either been introduced to me by others, or found me themselves and left a comment. As we have interacted openly and honestly, we have also become good friends. One such example is Rob, who started to do video-logs not very long after we made contact through my blog. (I mention Rob because he has chosen to be public and visible, and he does not mind me mentioning him.)

In the past 3 weeks, a handful of new guys have approached me via email. They span across the ages from teenager to fifties. One thing in common about these men: they are all moved by my experience of healing and change. Several mention that they are desirous of the relationship I have with Brother A.

I have not made another official Summary Reflection to date, so let me add a short summary of how I have been doing, and the proceed back with my topic.

My eSSA (eroticized SSA, as one new brother put it, or SSsA as I had put it, but I like eSSA better) is pretty much non-existent. I am still attracted to good-looking guys, but there is no longer a need to sexualize it. It is not even a struggle to not sexualize it -- it just will not happen. I think I can still force myself to fantasize if I wanted to (you don't forget how to ride a bike once you've learned), but I have no desire to. Rather, I am in touch with the feeling of "inadequacy" that hits me from time to time. So, in place of the feeling of a need to be sexual with another man, the feeling presents itself as "I am feeling inadequate." I sit with that feeling and just feel miserable for a while, and do other helpful things such as talk to a friend, or journal, or exercise. I have had no interest in porn. As for masturbation, that too has not happened for a while (I have not counted days), but the purity aspect of that is more specifically enabled through spiritual discipline. Believe it or not, having sex with one's wife does not necessarily curtail masturbation.

On the heterosexual side, it has been hard to avoid looking at beautiful-looking women. Wife and I watched Dreamgirls last night, and I had zero identification with any of the women like I had in the past. Rather, I identified with the "brothers" (as they called each other), especially in their desire for the women. The women--especially Beyonce--were very beautiful, and I could have sexualized the thoughts I had for them. But I avoided that. Besides, my wife is also beautiful and she is real. Fantasies cannot meet reality needs.

Brother A and I have further refined and developed our relationship. We relate to each other as mutual friends and brothers rather than our previous mentor-mentee relationship. We also irritate the heck out of each other from time to time, but there is no question that I love him deeply and dearly, and I would do anything for him. Truly, it feels like a David-and-Jonathan relationship!

And now, I come back to the topic with which I started this post: the new guys. You know who you are: JG, EH, CL, and most recently, DA. There is also JoeMn who had contacted me in a different way. I am pleasantly surprised that you have found me through my blog, and I want to get to know each one of you deeply and intimately. But I am finding myself stretched for time as one of you has already complained. So, I am starting to think that I need to do something so that we can more effectively help each other. My present strategy of getting to know you one-on-one in an intimate way will peter out real soon if more people come my way. But I want more men to come and receive help because there is HOPE for change! I just can't help everyone by myself, and it's foolishness for me to even to attempt to do so.

So, for any of you younger folks (i.e. not-married or below 30) reading this post, there is an Accountability Brothers' group on Facebook -- it is an invisible group that you can join, and does not show up on your Facebook profile. If you're interested in that group, ask me, and I will point you in the right direction. I need to warn you that not everyone in that group thinks the same way I do -- not everyone there wants to experience change to heterosexuality like I have, although most would likely agree that purity and/or holiness is a worthy pursuit.

As for the married Christian men (or singles over 30?), I am starting to wonder if it might be time to start a group of some sort? People who have felt a connection to this "hope for change" that I have written about in this blog coming together online--perhaps even with Brother A (!)--either in email or FB or some other form, for mutual encouragement, prayer, exchange? A group that is made up of people who are further along in their journey of change? A group where we can also talk about how to help others who are just beginning to work through their struggles? I don't know. I thought I'd throw this idea out into cyberspace and see what the Lord does with it.


  1. Accountability Brothers is open to men of all ages and marital status. Also, all members there are seeking holiness and purity in Christ. No one in that group thinks homosexual relationships are appropriate for a Christian man. In terms of whether or not people there are seeking change, you're right. Some, like myself, prefer celibacy and others are seeking to develop a working heterosexual relationship and some will stop at nothing to be heterosexual. I think the diversity of the group, though, is one of the greatest things about it.

  2. TC:

    I like your idea. I'd be willing to join this type of fb group. Absolutely. Thanks for the post and for being willing to organize this!

  3. I realize many of the people contacting you may be from quite far away. But there is a support group that has recently moved to a more central location (at least I think it's central), would you consider participating or at least letting local folks know that it exists?

  4. Jay: Yes, AB group is open to all ages, although it is predominantly younger singles. I have not written much in it, but I suppose the diversity does contribute value. So perhaps I should add my married-man's perspectives from time to time.

    Robert: I certainly have you in mind!

    n'Process: Let me know what you mean. I am thinking more of a 30+ and married-men's group, and those interested in experiencing change.

  5. I'd be interested in a support group through email or even through a conference call line, using I've used this with another group and as long as the group is smaller, it works well. It can get cumbersome when it is a larger group.

    I am not on Facebook and have resisted it because I don't want to have to maintain another online venue.

  6. Hmmm... TCM im glad that everything is going well for you. And im so happy, that God has changed you. You are so blessed and appreciated TCM, thanks for everything. I wish I could say more but I cant find the words to describe how glad I am.

  7. EH: A conference call is an interesting option. I will look into that. Facebook is not that hard to set up, and you get used to it real quick. Yet I understand the difficulty of having yet to manage another online thing, esp. if you're not big into internet use.

    JMG: I'm very glad too.

  8. God is using you, brother. I just read your entire blog in one sitting; my eyes are blurring.

    I have read accounts of Christ using SSA to draw men to Him before, but none hit so close to home. At first I didn't know why, because my journey feels different in the details. Then I realized it was simply that I relate to the "way" you walk in truth, each heavy footfall landing determinedly closer to Him, man's and world's noise making your ears want to bleed, but not stopping that next step.

    I walk beside you. Thanks for pouring out your... self.

    In and through and together-towards Him.

  9. tsdrace: welcome to my one-day-read blog! unfortunately, i have to say that i don't have much time these days to relate with folks over the internet. that might change in time, but for the immediate foreseable future, life looks pretty busy. yet, nice to "meet" you.