An email discussion from the North Star Men's group started today with this message:
So, here's a question that I've been struggling with the past several
How do I accept and love myself when I don't accept and love the fact
that I am attracted to other men?
The best illustration I have of this concern is when I'm out in
public, I feel attracted to a guy, and then I tell myself, "You
shouldn't feel that way. It's wrong to feel attracted to men." While
that isn't the same thing as saying, "You're bad because you feel
attracted to guys," the effect on my self-esteem is the same. How can
I seperate what I do from who I am? How do I allow myself to dislike
the fact that I feel attracted to guys WITHOUT letting that affect how
I feel about myself as a whole person?
I think that this is an important thing to work on. I believe that
it's the Book of Mormon teaches us that "men are that they might have
joy." So, how do we experience joy, and learn to love and accept
ourselves, in spite of feeling things that we would rather not
I figure that this is a struggle that other men face. I was hoping
for your insights about what you've done that has and hasn't helped in
accepting who you are and loving yourselves while also experiencing
attractions to other men.
Personally, I think that saying "You shouldn't feel that way. It's wrong to feel attracted to men." is wrong and just as destructive as telling yourself you are a bad person.
According to what has been revealed to us by the leaders of the church, the only thing wrong about homosexual attractions is acting out on them by breaking the law of chastity. Other than that, it's just something you have to deal with in your life. Stop telling yourself you are bad for feeling the way you do. You aren't. Stop bludgeoning yourself over something you have no control over. You are attracted to men. Accept it. When you see a hot guy, acknowledge it but then move on. Just don't dwell on it to the point where you act out on it.
And you start to love youself more when you sit back and recognize all of the wonderful traits you have that straight guys usualy don't. For example, I love that I am a much more sympathetic person than 99.9% of the guys I know. My female friends love that too, because they know they can talk to me about their lives and I'm actually listening to them. Be greatful for your gayness. In spite of the challenges, there are some good perks. :)
It's important for everyone to realize that nobody is under any sort of condemnation just because they are attracted to members of the same sex. I think that the sort of self-belittling that the original poster seems to have problems with are just the kind of thing that lead people to desperate acts such as suicide. There is nothing sinful about having those feelings. I reference Elder Holland's Oct 2007 Ensign article as support for this.
Be greatful for your gayness. I honestly have come to see many great things that have happened to me, and many great personality traits and qualities that I have because of my sexual orientation. It has shaped my life in a way that would never have been possible any other way. I used to think that if there was a pill I could take to not be gay any more, I would do it in a heartbeat. But now I'm not so sure that I would want to give up portions of my personality and character to become a SSG (Stupid Straight Guy).
Or is it spelled Stoopid Straight Guy...?