(Inspired by a conversation yesterday)
So I read an article about the change potential for a gay guy and it seems to be about zilch.
Really, like they’re going to be a horny teenager forever?
No, more that they are unlikely to ever become a straight guy with zero attraction to men and overwhelming attraction to women.
Well, that still leaves a lot of room for change.
I guess; is that what you’ve found?
For sure. I’ve been on this journey seriously for about 6 years and in that time I have experienced massive changes in my attractions. I used to get intense, year-long crushes on guys and now they’ve reduced to minor skirmishes every so often where I want friendship a little too much. I used to have strong desires to look at porn or stare at guys and they’ve greatly diminished as well and really only grow when I feed them through looking too long or lusting. I see myself as a masculine man and have healthy relationships with other guys. Sure, I’m still same sex attracted in a sense, but how that works out is totally different now.
So you don’t want a boyfriend to have sex with?
No, the thought weirds me out. My fellow males are my brothers; God made us men and we all have male bodies and ways of thinking. Though honestly my lustful thoughts can sometimes take me near that idea I wouldn’t be able to actually do it in real life right now.
So you love women?
Usually no more or less than I love men, which is to say there’s not much sexual desire there at all. Though I have known guys with SSA who experience a genuine attraction to a specific woman, so that is still a very real possibility for me. At the same time I have come to a huge appreciation of how God designed man and woman to complement each other physically and mentally and spiritually and emotionally. They were designed to be together. I think I could definitely get married and have children and be happy even if there was no attraction as God’s design is so strong.
Isn’t the point to be horny?
Our Western media and culture would suggest so, but in other countries they have arranged marriages where there’s no attraction to start with and they have to make it work by building a deep friendship.
If you believe that then why are you still single?
I had a girlfriend for six months once and realised that my problem was not really my lack of attraction, but that I was too selfish to give my all in the relationship. I wonder whether I am mature enough to overcome my pride and selfishness without the help of attraction spurring me on, but that’s probably just a poor excuse.
You don’t mind being single?
I’ve gotten used to it and I have great friends and family and there are plenty of things that interest me, which keep me busy without a relationship. I will have enough money for a down payment on a house if I want or travel overseas, so I’m not missing out there and I know not every SSA guy is so blessed. I’ve always been pretty independent and like a fair bit of time to myself thinking and exercising and reading. Sometimes I worry people will think I’m strange if I’m still single at 40, but I’m sure over time I would become alright with that as well.
Could what has happened to you happen to every gay guy?
I don’t know. Homosexuality is pretty complex, which I guess is why there is no replicable scientific research for what causes it and a few surveys unable to prove strong causation. This means we have to assume that there are hundreds of biological and environmental factors combining to cause it making it hard to generalise.
Some may never change and some may change a lot?
Possibly and I’ve read of people who would say they fit on both sides of the equation.
What if someone has tried for years and years to change and nothing happened?
Just before I answer this question I’ll remind you that when I say change I don’t just mean liking women and not liking men. I mean liking men a lot less and being emotionally healthy and seeing yourself as masculine and so on and so on. To be honest I’ve never met this person you’re talking about. Many people try for a couple of years and give up. For me it took about four years from that point to where I could actually go ‘oh look I’ve changed’. For some it will be shorter or longer. Just to note I usually start counting from the first time they have confessed their SSA and it has been uncomfortable for them. That’s a good sign they’re seriously trying to do something about it.
There might be some guy who has tried for 10 years and nothing has happened.
Well if they happen to be eavesdropping on this conversation they will have enough knowledge so that by that time they may have had a serious amount of counselling if they have money and long conversations with other SSA guys and spent lots of time seeking to build healthy male relationships and they’ve probably not looked at porn for a couple of years and they would have a pretty good trust in God through wrestling with Him as they suffer. Maybe they still like men a lot and don’t like women. But there’s been plenty of change.
They’ll never look at gay porn again then?
It’s possible. I think I could go 60 years without looking at gay porn even if I will have the ability to jack off to it for the rest of my life…What’s also possible is that they will be unemployed for six months and then their closest friend dies and then they have to move away from their friends and church because they are poor and then they get depression and then they spend every day for a month looking at gay porn and then they declare they never changed and it was all a lie. I don’t think that really proves anything.
SSA guys aren’t notable for making war on their sin and unhelpful thinking.
You could say that. I certainly wasn’t for a long time and still struggle to do so every few weeks.
So could you end up being that guy?
For sure. Never say never. There but for the grace of God go I. But every day I work and trust to make sure it’s not going to be me.
You seem to be pretty easy going about all this change stuff. You don’t seem overly fussed about whether you change heaps or a little.
To a degree. It can be terribly painful to deal with this stuff on a fallen world where there are few who understand. It is terribly sad that such a thing as homosexuality exists as it was never meant to be this way. But ultimately my hope is in my God and not whether I ever get hard over a woman or lose the ability to do so over a man. I trust that He is good and Jesus shows me that He knows what it’s like to be human and that He loves me.