Wednesday, October 30, 2013

Dealing with Self-Hatred

Dear Dr Bill,
I am a gay Man.  I am 44 years old, I have a wonderful Civil Partner whom I love, however I am not
Happy, I want to be straight, I want to be on equal footing with straight men, I don't want people asking me if I am gay, I act straight all the time; I am careful never to let my guard down, I have visited Doctors for a cure. I can't believe in this day and age they can't cure Homosexuality.
If there was a pill I would have taken it years ago. All I want to know is -- why me,?I asked my doctor, and he said why not. I was staggered and furious, he said being gay is not a problem it's natural. I can't fancy women. I fancy men I even married one because I fancy men.

I do t know what to do;I have lost so many friends and hurt people because I explode with anger
if I am asked if I am Gay.

I want to know why gay men look gay, what causes it, how can I be happy. How can I make my partner happy.

You're suffering from a very bad case of what what we call internalized homophobia, and it has a lot of causes. You may have been treated badly because you're gay, you may have been raised in a very homophobic environment, have relatives who are anti-gay, or have negative feelings about your sexuality because of religious feelings. 

The first thing you have to accept is that it's okay to be gay

There is no "cure" for homosexuality because it is not a disease. It is perfectly natural. This isn't gay activist propaganda -- it's scientific fact. The latest research strongly suggests that we are born gay, and nothing can change it -- there is no "cause." We can pretend to be heterosexual, we can live false lives, stay in the closet, but isn't it better to accept yourself and enjoy being gay?

To answer some of your questions, most gay men do not "look" gay. Only a relatively small percentage conform to stereotypes. Some gay men fear and hate the fact that they may be obviously gay, while others embrace it, have fun with it, develop an inner toughness that deals with the fact that many people will assume or know they are gay without being told. 

Whether you're obviously gay or not, once you accept that there is absolutely nothing wrong in being gay, you won't care if people assume, know, or ask if you are. You won't be ashamed and you won't care. That's the great benefit of Gay Pride. 

Another important point is that you've been lucky enough to find a partner. I know a great many gay men with partners and husbands and boyfriends, but I also know a lot who are single and wish they weren't. Many of those single guys have negative feelings because they're lonely, but if you are in a relationship with someone whom you say you love and is wonderful, then what exactly is the problem? You have someone to share your life with. Do you think there's something horrible and inferior and "diseased" about this man you love? I hope not. So why feel that way about yourself?

You have swallowed a lot of society's negative feelings about gay people, and need to get past it. If there's a gay/LGBT center in your city, see if they do counseling; perhaps a gay or gay-friendly therapist could help you feel better about yourself. You not only owe it to yourself to change your negative and frankly outdated attitudes, but to your partner. 

Best of luck!

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