A GAY SON PROUD OF HIS FATHER

Hi Project,
I am a 55 year-old parent, unfortunately a widower for five years, who found himself in these days to discover that his son (his only child) is homosexual. If I still had my wife I could discuss with her, but unfortunately this is not possible. I have practically no knowledge of what homosexuality is and on what it may entail and I cannot talk to anyone about it because then they would ask themselves why I talk about it and I would risk to undermine my son’s privacy. My son is 21 years old, he has always been an exemplary guy, studious but also cheerful, sporty, I would say happy with his life. He never had a girlfriend, this is true, and I probably underestimated it, but he had female friends who came home to study with him, in short, it didn’t occur to me that he could be gay, he never had any effeminate attitudes, physically is a nice guy, normal and nobody identifies him as gay, at least according to what I think.
You’ll wonder how I got to know he’s gay, since he never mentioned it. I never spied on him, I would never have done it, but I didn’t even really have any reason to do it. One day when I had to work in the afternoon, I see Matthew go out to go to university. I go to the kitchen to prepare a cup of tea, before entering the kitchen I see a piece of paper on the ground, or better a note of those accompanying the gifts, there were a few written words: “You’re my sweet puppy!” [The reader must keep in mind that in Italian, the language of the author of the email he’s reading, the masculine nouns are easily distinguishable from the feminine ones and the adjectives must be used in the masculine or feminine form according to the nouns to which they refer. In Italian, if you are addressing a man or a guy you have to tell “Cucciolo docissimo”, if you address a woman or a girl you have to say “Cucciola dolcissima”, in English it would be said in both cases “very sweet puppy”.] The thing that came absolutely spontaneous to me was to think that Matthew had a girl and that that note was a note that the girl had sent him, then I looked Attentively at the writing and I said to myself: “But this is Matthew’s writing!” Instinctively the first thing that came to my mind was to put everything back exactly as I had found it and leave the house, because I would never have wanted my son to feel embarrassed, and so I did, I returned late in the afternoon, when I knew that Matthew had to go to swim, and I noticed that the note was no more on the ground, evidently Matthew had returned, he had found the note on the ground and had reassured himself. But I was totally upset. I considered all of the possible hypothesis, but the ticket didn’t allow other interpretations: Matthew had written it for a guy! It didn’t seem likely that it was a joke, in short, the conclusion could only be that my son was gay. But how could such a thing be possible, he has missed his mother since he was 16, his father has always been present and even too present. I was comforted by telling myself that anyway the note was the only clue that led me to that conclusion and that it was a weak clue, but a minute later it didn’t seem so weak to me. I didn’t say anything to Matthew and everything between us continued exactly as usual. I had the idea of spying on him, but I put it aside immediately, because it seems to me an unworthy behavior, I know that the best thing would be to talk to Matthew and tell him exactly what happened and tell him that the note I had put it back on the ground after reading it because I felt agitated and embarrassed, but taking a step like that is not easy because Matthew could also feel embarrassed, and then I started trying to get an idea of what the homosexuality is. At the beginning I was literally upset by what I found on the net. I’ve read about some apps that allow gays to recognize each other, I read something about dating sites, but they were upsetting things. The biggest fear was for the HIV because I read that the risk of HIV for a homosexual is much higher than for a heterosexual guy. After a bit of research I arrived on your forum and read a few testimonials from parents. I must say that finding Gay Project has comforted me a lot, but unfortunately sites like your forum are a very rare and on the contrary there are a lot of risky situations. In short, I think you can give me some useful information on how to behave with Matthew. I’m not homophobe, I would like to help my son be gay but I don’t know how to do such a thing, I would like him to understand that I just want his happiness, I don’t want to make him straight, I just want him to be happy with his father.
I thank you in advance.
Guido
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Hi Guido,
I think that Matthew has every reason to be happy with his father! It would be very nice if there were many fathers like you! I understand very well that a father who doesn’t know the reality of homosexuality, can remain doubtful and agitated in discovering that his son is gay. If the writing is really that of your son (more than likely, because usually guys speak in the family of their girlfriend and don’t speak at all about their guys) there is no doubt at all, but the content of that note, even if very short, makes us think of a serious relationship, that is, of a relationship that has at its base a form of affection, of tenderness. The fact that your son is calm, has a good relationship with you and has never had problems with school or university suggests that he is a prudent guy and also aware of the risks that sex can involve and anyway, certainly  a guy doesn’t write: “you’re my very sweet puppy!” to a guy found in an erotic chat! So, instinctively, I would say that Matthew knows what he does, I could even be wrong but he doesn’t have the attitude of the guys who end up in trouble. What to do? You found the solution yourself: talk to Matthew, tell him exactly how things went, I don’t think he can take it badly. He is a guy, yes, but he’s also an adult and you have to treat him as such and then, from what you write, there is no doubt, you love him. Don’t be afraid of your son! And above all, be sure that he will be proud of you! A hug!
Project
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Hi Project,
I spoke with my son last night. When I finished telling him about the note, he opened his arms, smiled and added: “I was afraid you would have taken it badly, oh God, I’ve had the idea of telling you that but I thought it would upset you … , but now the problem is over.” Then he told me about the guy, who is a university colleague who has also come to our home and met me sometimes and that I always thought was a very special guy. I told Matthew that I wrote to you and he stayed there wide-eyed, he said: “Did you write to Project? But do you know that I know him in person?” And then it was my turn to stay wide-eyed. He told me that he wrote to you several times (signing as Matthew97) and he met you in person with two other guys of the forum). I feel very reassured and then what you said to me happened: he patted my cheek and told me. “Fathers like you are few!” I don’t hide that I was happy.
Guido
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If you want, you can participate in the discussion of this post open on the Gay Project Forum: http://gayprojectforum.altervista.org/T-a-gay-son-proud-of-his-father
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THE SYNOD ON THE FAMILY AND THE GAY MOUSE

This article is dedicated to the examination of the discussion and of the Final Report of the recently concluded Extraordinary Synod on the family, regarding the theme of the relationship between church and homosexuals. I published it in Italian on the Gay Project sites on October 19, 2014.

I must dutifully acknowledge Pope Francis that he has allowed all those involved to follow the work of the Synod, allowing the publication of the documents prepared during the Synod itself, as well as the voting results on the final deliberations. It is a criterion of transparency that on such delicate issues is a must, but it should not be forgotten that the publicity of the documents is also aimed at avoiding gossip both inside and outside the Vatican.

I invite the reader to arm himself with good will to follow the path of the Synod with me from the beginning.

After a considerable work of consultation and coordination of the indications emerging from the individual local churches, in view of the Synod, the Instrumentum laboris “The pastoral challenges of the family in the context of evangelization” was published by the Vatican, which in Part II, Chapter III, letter B, concerning unions between persons of the same sex, is expressed as follows:
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b) Concerning Unions of Persons of the Same Sex

Civil Recognition

110. On unions of persons of the same sex, the responses of the bishops’ conferences refer to Church teaching. “There are absolutely no grounds for considering homosexual unions to be in any way similar or even remotely analogous to God’s plan for marriage and family. […] Nonetheless, according to the teaching of the Church, men and women with homosexual tendencies ‘must be accepted with respect, compassion and sensitivity. Every sign of unjust discrimination in their regard should be avoided’” (CDF, Considerations regarding Proposals to Give Legal Recognition to Unions between Homosexual Persons, 4). The responses indicate that the recognition in civil law of unions between persons of the same sex largely depends on the socio-cultural, religious and political context. In this regard, the episcopal conferences describe three instances: the first exists when repressive and punitive measures are taken in reaction to the phenomenon of homosexuality in all its aspects, especially when the public manifestation of homosexuality is prohibited by civil law. Some responses indicate that, in this context, the Church provides different forms of spiritual care for single, homosexual people who seek the Church’s assistance.

111. A second context is one where the phenomenon of homosexuality is fluid. Homosexual behavior is not punished, but simply tolerated until it becomes visible or public. In this context, legislation on civil unions between persons of the same sex does not usually exist. In political circles, especially in the West, however, the increasing tendency is to adopt laws providing for registered partnerships or so-called “marriage” between persons of the same sex. People argue non-discrimination to give support to this idea, an approach which is perceived by believers and a good part of the public, in central and eastern Europe, as an imposition by a political and foreign culture.

112. The responses describe a third context, one where States have introduced legislation recognizing civil unions or so-called “marriages” between homosexual persons. In some countries, the situation reflects a real redefining of marriage, where the couple is viewed only in legal terms, with such references as “equal rights” and “non-discrimination” without any thought to a constructive dialogue in the matter based on the deeper anthropological issues involved and the centrality of the integral well-being of the human person, especially the integral well-being of the children in these unions. When legal equality is given to heterosexual and homosexual marriage, the State often allows the adoption of children (biological children of either partner or children born through artificial fertilization). Such is the case, particularly in English-speaking countries and central Europe.

An evaluation of the particular Churches

113. Every bishops’ conference voiced opposition to “redefining” marriage between a man and a woman through the introduction of legislation permitting a union between two people of the same sex. The episcopal conferences amply demonstrate that they are trying to find a balance between the Church’s teaching on the family and a respectful, non-judgmental attitude towards people living in such unions. On the whole, the extreme reactions to these unions, whether compromising or uncompromising, do not seem to have facilitated the development of an effective pastoral programme which is consistent with the Magisterium and compassionate towards the persons concerned.

114. A factor which clearly has an impact on the Church’s pastoral care and one which complicates the search for a balanced attitude in this situation is the promotion of a gender ideology. In some places, this ideology tends to exert its influence even at the elementary level, spreading a mentality which, intending to eliminate homophobia, proposes, in fact, to undermine sexual identity.

115. Episcopal conferences supply a variety of information on unions between persons of the same sex. In countries where legislation exists on civil unions, many of the faithful express themselves in favour of a respectful and non-judgmental attitude towards these people and a ministry which seeks to accept them. This does not mean, however, that the faithful give equal status to heterosexual marriage and civil unions between persons of the same sex. Some responses and observations voice a concern that the Church’s acceptance of people in such unions could be construed as recognition of their union.
Some Pastoral Guidelines

116. When considering the possibility of a ministry to these people, a distinction must be made between those who have made a personal, and often painful, choice and live that choice discreetly so as not to give scandal to others, and those whose behaviour promotes and actively — often aggressively — calls attention to it. Many conferences emphasize that, due to the fact that these unions are a relatively recent phenomenon, no pastoral programs exist in their regard. Others admit a certain unease at the challenge of accepting these people with a merciful spirit and, at the same time, holding to the moral teaching of the Church, all the while attempting to provide appropriate pastoral care which takes every aspect of the person into consideration. Some responses recommend not using phrases such as “gay,” “lesbian” or “homosexual” to define a person’s identity.

117. Many responses and observations call for theological study in dialogue with the human sciences to develop a multi-faceted look at the phenomenon of homosexuality. Others recommend collaborating with specific entities, e.g., the Pontifical Academy of the Social Sciences and the Pontifical Academy for Life, in thoroughly examining the anthropological and theological aspects of human sexuality and the sexual difference between man and woman in order to address the issue of gender ideology.

118. The great challenge will be to develop a ministry which can maintain the proper balance between accepting persons in a spirit of compassion and gradually guiding them to authentic human and Christian maturity. In this regard, some conferences refer to certain organizations as successful models for such a ministry.

119. Sex education in families and educational institutions is an increasingly urgent challenge, especially in countries where the State tends to propose in schools a one-sided view and a gender ideology. Formation programmes ought to be established in schools or parish communities which offer young people an adequate idea of Christian and emotional maturity to allow them to face even the phenomenon of homosexuality. At the same time, the observations show that there is still no consensus in the Church on the specific way of receiving persons in these unions. The first step would be a slow process of gathering information and distinguishing criteria of discernment for not only ministers and pastoral workers but also groups and ecclesial movements.

The transmission of the Faith to children in same sex unions

120. The responses are clearly opposed to legislation which would allow the adoption of children by persons in a same-sex union, because they see a risk to the integral good of the child, who has the right to have a mother and father, as pointed out recently by Pope Francis (cf. Address to Members of the International Catholic Child Bureau (BICE), 11 April 2014). However, when people living in such unions request a child’s baptism, almost all the responses emphasize that the child must be received with the same care, tenderness and concern which is given to other children. Many responses indicate that it would be helpful to receive more concrete pastoral directives in these situations. Clearly, the Church has the duty to ascertain the actual elements involved in transmitting the faith to the child. Should a reasonable doubt exist in the capability of persons in a same sex union to instruct the child in the Christian faith, proper support is to be secured in the same manner as for any other couple seeking the baptism of their children. In this regard, other people in their family and social surroundings could also provide assistance. In these cases, the pastor is carefully to oversee the preparation for the possible baptism of the child, with particular attention given to the choice of the godfather and godmother.

http://www.vatican.va/roman_curia/synod/…ia_en.html
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I don’t intend to comment on this text by entering into the merits, I limit myself just to underline the breadth of expectations that could arise from it in so many faithful and not.

After the beginning of the Synod, the Relator General, Card. Péter Erdő, Archbishop of Esztergom-Budapest, presents his “Relatio post disceptationem” on October 13, 2014, a document that is a kind of draft of the final document, which expresses itself in this way regarding homosexuality:

Welcome homosexual people

50. Homosexual persons have talents and qualities to offer to the Christian community: can we welcome these people, guaranteeing them an area of fraternity in our communities? Often they wish to meet a Church that is a welcoming home for them. Can our communities be able to accept it and evaluate their sexual orientation without compromising the Catholic doctrine on family and marriage?

51. The homosexual question challenges us in a serious reflection on how to develop realistic paths of emotional growth and human and evangelical maturity by integrating the sexual dimension: it therefore presents itself as an important educational challenge. The Church also affirms that unions between persons of the same sex cannot be equated with marriage between men and women. It is not even acceptable that pressures are exerted on the attitude of pastors or that international organizations can condition financial aid to the introduction of regulations inspired by gender ideology.

52. Without denying the moral problems connected to homosexual unions it is noted that there are cases in which mutual support until the sacrifice is a precious support for the life of the partners. Furthermore, the Church has special attention towards children living with same-sex couples, reiterating that the needs and rights of children should always be placed first.
http://press.vatican.va/content/salastam…03037.html (My translation)
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As we can see, the “Relatio post disceptationem” very strongly restricts the scope of the “Instrumentum laboris”, but also contains some elements that do not speak of openness but of respect at least towards homosexual persons. From the point of view of a lay man who sees things from the outside, however, with the “Relatio post disceptationem”, the mountain of expectations has given birth to a skimpy little mouse. The press, however, welcomes the Relatio as a great opening of the church towards homosexuals. However skimpy, the gay mouse is around the Vatican but the austere Synod fathers are not intimidated by that mouse and armed with their age-old wisdom, are ready to catch it before it escapes officially from the Synod hall. Here the minor circles sharpen their weapons:

This is the expression of the French-language circle “A”, of which the Eminent Card. Robert SARAH is moderator and S.E. Mons. François-Xavier DUMORTIER, S.J. is speaker:

“As for the reception of homosexual persons, it seems clear to us that the Church, following the image of Christ the Good Shepherd (John 10, 11-18) has always wanted to welcome people who knock on his door, a door open to all, people that must be received with respect, compassion and recognizing the dignity of each one. To accompany a person pastorally doesn’t mean to validate either a form of sexuality or a form of life.”[1]

The French-language Circle B, whose moderator is Cardinal Em. Card. Christoph SCHÖNBORN, O.P. and Speaker S.E. Mons. André LÉONARD, expresses itself as follows:

“5. We reiterated our respect and our welcoming towards homosexual people and we denounced the unjust and often violent discrimination that they suffered and still suffer, sometimes, even in the Church, alas! But this doesn’t mean that the Church must legitimize homosexual practices, much less recognize, as some states do, a so-called homosexual “marriage”. On the contrary, we denounce all the maneuvers of some international organizations to impose, through financial blackmail, to the poor countries some laws that establish the so-called homosexual “marriage”. [2]

The English Language Circle B having as a Moderator the Card. Wilfrid Fox NAPIER, O.F.M. and as a Speaker S.E. Mons. Diarmuid MARTIN so expresses itself:

“On the theme of the pastoral care of people with homosexual tendencies, the group observed that the Church must continue to promote the revealed nature of marriage as always between a man and a woman united throughout life in a life-giving and faithful communion.
The group encouraged pastors and parishes to take care of people with the same sex attraction, providing for them in the family of the Church, always protecting their dignity as children of God, created in his image. Within the Church, they should find a home where they can listen, with everyone else, to the call of Jesus to follow him in fidelity to the truth, to receive His grace to do so, and His mercy when they are wrong.”[3]

The Report of the Italian Language Circle “A”, having as its moderator the Cardinal Fernando FILONI and as Speaker S.E Mons. Edoardo MENICHELLI, expressed itself as follows:

“With regard to the pastoral care of homosexual persons, we have directed ourselves towards the proposal of a single statement in which it was emphasized both a commitment to proximity oriented to evangelization and the style of the Church, as an open house, enhancing the gifts, the good will and the sincere path of each one. It has been reaffirmed that unions between persons of the same sex cannot be equated with marriage between men and women, expressing the concern to safeguard the rights of children who must grow harmoniously with the tenderness of their father and mother.”

The Report of the Italian Language Circle C having for Moderator S.E. Mons. Angelo MASSAFRA, O.F.M. and for Speaker, Fr. Manuel Jesús ARROBA CONDE, C.M.F., expresses itself as follows:

“In this regard, the fathers pointed out some more specific aspects to enrich the proposals formulated in the text: an express mention on family movements; a special number [statement] on the adoptions; an invitation to study new presences in the educational field; a return to the texts of the instrumentum laboris about homosexual unions; an appeal to institutions to promote policies in favor of the family.”

The Report of the Spanish Language Circle A with the Moderator Card. Francisco ROBLES ORTEGA and the Speaker S.E. Mons. Luis Augusto CASTRO QUIROGA, I.M.C. expresses itself as follows:

“As for n. 50, it has been observed that we should not talk about homosexuals almost as if homosexuality were a part of their ontological being, but of people with homosexual tendencies. It was requested to replace the text of this number with the following:. “Sexuality that makes us exist as a human being as a male and a female is an essential value in anthropology and Christian theology. It makes us exist reciprocally not in indistinction but in complementarity … even people with homosexual tendencies need guidance and support to help them grow in faith and to know God’s plan for them.”[4]

The report of the Spanish Language Club “B” having as a Moderator Card. Lluís MARTÍNEZ SISTACH and as Speker S.E. Msgr. Rodolfo VALENZUELA NÚÑEZ so expresses its opinion on the Relatio post dissertationem:

“We believe that there is a lack of emphasis on important issues such as abortion, the attacks against life, the large phenomenon of adoption, the decisions taken by spouses in conscience, as well as greater clarity on the issue of homosexuality. “[5]
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Evidently, the gay mouse has sown panic among the Synodal Fathers, but they have finally managed to capture it.

The following is the paragraph of the “Relatio Synodi”, that is, of the final document of the extraordinary synod on the family, concerning the relationship between the church and the homosexuals:

Pastoral Attention towards Persons with Homosexual Tendencies

55. Some families have members who have a homosexual tendency. In this regard, the synod fathers asked themselves what pastoral attention might be appropriate for them in accordance with Church teaching: “There are absolutely no grounds for considering homosexual unions to be in any way similar or even remotely analogous to God’s plan for marriage and family.” Nevertheless, men and women with a homosexual tendency ought to be received with respect and sensitivity. “Every sign of unjust discrimination in their regard should be avoided” (Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith, Considerations Regarding Proposals to Give Legal Recognition to Unions Between Homosexual Persons, 4).

56. Exerting pressure in this regard on the Pastors of the Church is totally unacceptable: it is equally unacceptable for international organizations to link their financial assistance to poorer countries with the introduction of laws that establish “marriage” between persons of the same sex.

http://www.vatican.va/roman_curia/synod/…ia_en.html

It should be emphasized that point 55 was approved without the qualified majority of 2/3 but with a simple majority, however very strong and very close to 2/3, of 118 in favor and 62 against.

As is evident, the mouse was happily devoured before being able to leave the Synod hall. The initial “instrumentum laboris” was reduced to the material repetition of the contents of the “Considerations about the projects of legal recognition of unions between homosexual persons” signed by Josepf Ratzinger, then Prefect of the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith, in June 2003.

Frankly I don’t understand the homosexual Catholics who hope to find a respectful reception by the church. Other Christian churches have taken on decidedly more evangelical positions.

Just today, 18 October 2014, the Mayor of Rome, Ignazio Marino, ordered to register 16 homosexual marriages celebrated abroad in the official marriage register of Rome.

Thus L’Avvenire (the newspaper of the Italian Episcopal Conference) of October 18 begins its comment on the fact: “”An ideological choice, which certifies an unprecedented institutional affront” based on a “mystification supported at the media and political level”: so the editorial of Angelo Zema, on Roma Sette, the magazine of the diocese of Rome on newsstands on Sunday with Avvenire, defines the transcription of marriages celebrated abroad by some homosexual couples operated by the mayor of “Roma Capitale”, Ignazio Marino, in the municipal registers. The editorial speaks of “illegitimate” choices in a “context with a Hollywood tone” and “with a clear demagogic flavor”.

When the Synod was over and the gay little mouse was no more wandering around the Vatican, the CEI (Italian Episcopal Conference) immediately warned another reason for alarm: there are many gay mice, too many gay mice, just outside the Vatican walls! Fortunately, the world goes his way, even if the church goes somewhere else.
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[1] “Concernant l’accueil des personnes homosexuelles, the nous semble clair que l’Eglise, à l’image du Christ Bon Pasteur (Jn 10,11-18), a toujours voulu accueillir les personnes here frappent à sa porte, porte ouverte à tous, here sont à accueillir avec respect, compassion et dans la reconnaissance de la dignité de chacun. Accompagner pastoralement une personne ne signifie valider ni une forma de sexualité ni une forme de vie.”

[2] “5. Nous avons redit notre respect et notre accueil aux personnes homosexuelles et avons dénoncé les discriminations injustes et parfois violentes qu’elles ont subies et subissent encore parfois, y compris dans l’Église, hélas! Mais cela ne signifie pas que l’Église doive légitimer les pratiques homosexuelles et encore moins reconnaître, in the font certains Ettats, a soi-disant «mariage» homosexuel. Au contraire, nous dénonçons toutes les manœuvres de certaines international organizations visant à imposer, par voie de chantage financier, aux pays pauvres des législations instituant un soi-disant “mariage” homosexuel.”

[3] “On the subject of the pastoral care of the family, the group noted that the Church must continue to promote the revealed nature of marriage as always between one man and one woman united in lifelong, life-giving, and faithful communion.
The group encouraged pastoral care for children with same sex attraction, providing protection in the family of the Church. They say they are in the same place, they can be found in the church, they hear the call of Jesus to follow Him in fidelity to the truth. His mercy when they fail.”

[4] “Pasando at n.50, if you have observado que no if debe hablar de personas homosexuales cases como el homosexualismo fuese part of su ser ontológico, sino de personas tendencias homosexuales. If solicitó sustituir el texto de este número por el siguiente: “the sexualidad que nos hace existir como humanidad en masculino y the femenino, es a valor irrenunciable en la antropología y en the theología cristiana. Nos hace ser los unos para with los otros no en la indistinción until en la complementariedad … Las personas with tendencias homosexuales tambien necesitan de acogida y acompañamiento que les ayude a crecer en la fe y a conocer el plan de Dios para ellos.”

[5] “Consideramos que faltaron en el mismo énfasis sobre temas importantes como el aborto, los atentados contra la vida, el amplio fenómeno de la adopción, las decision-making en conciencia de los exposos, así como a mayor claridad sobre el theme de la homosexualidad .”

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If you like, you can join the discussion on this post on Gay Project Forum: http://gayprojectforum.altervista.org/T-the-synod-on-the-family-and-the-gay-mouse

GAY GUYS AND VIOLENCE IN WHITE GLOVES

Hi Project,
I am writing this email because I need a quick and concrete advice. I’m 22, I’ve always been interested in guys older than me, but not too much, I mean 30-35 years old. I state that in practice until a short time ago I lived dreaming and following fantasy. In practice for only a few months now I started looking for a partner with the classic app that everyone knows and you don’t like at all.

One evening a guy 32 years old contacts me, he is not so bad, after so many scarecrows, he seemed really a nice guy, gym-goer, dynamic, a guy ok, that is the kind of guy I like. We talk a bit and everything seems ok, polite, no sexual allusions, doesn’t ask nosy questions, in short he doesn’t seem bad. We go on for a while always on the chat, then it comes the proposal to meet each other, I accept but in the morning, in a public place where there are many people and so on, etc., that is, I take all the precautions because I don’t know how much I can trust him.

We meet at the station, in person he’s better than in the picture, well dressed, not a ceremonial suit, but elegant, in short, one who cares about himself, the hair well done a very short beard, in short all the characteristics of one ok. We go to the bar, he offers me a cocktail, at the most I would take a cappuccino or an orange drink, he asks me if I want to go with him for a ride out of town and tells me that his car is parked nearby, but I tell him I just wanted to take a walk with him to get to know each other better, he is clearly annoyed by my answer, he doesn’t seem the type used to being told no.

We continue the walk, at lunchtime he wants to take me to a restaurant but I don’t accept and I don’t go, he is clearly unnerved but holds back his aggressiveness. In the early afternoon we say goodbye, I follow him, in practice I follow him, he doesn’t even realize it, I see the car, a remarkable BMW, I write down the license plate number, that could be useful.

In the evening he calls me back, he seems calm. The dialogue in chat between us goes on. Slowly I begin to trust him, I agree to go to lunch with him and he chooses restaurants in my opinion a little too cheap for him, to allow me to pay in the Roman way (each for himself), because I had put this condition. A month passes, all without sex between us, then he proposes me to accompany him to another city for work. I tell him that’s fine but always paying everything in the Roman way, and booking rooms in the hotel is up to me. He is very annoyed by this fact but eventually accepts.

While we are in the car he changes tone and begins to talk about sex, but he does it in a way that I don’t like at all, he does as one who is accustomed to claim something from others and I cannot stand him, I point it out to him, he makes a big sigh and says, “Ok, no sex!” I had booked two single rooms in the hotel so as not to stay in the room with him, “strangely” he didn’t expect it. He comes into my room, then goes to the bathroom to take a shower and leaves the phone on the bed, a cell phone identical to mine.

A message arrives, I open it and read it: “You’re a piece of shit! You have to disappear from my face!”, I wrote down the name and the number then I see that there is a frequent exchange of text messages with that person, as I still feel the water flowing I read a some emails and I understand that it was an exchange with his former boyfriend. My boyfriend (let’s call him so) was threatening his ex to get something from him but it was not clear what. I heard the water close, I erased the last message and put everything in place.

He comes out of the shower I don’t tell you how … what he had in mind was clear but I felt something strange in all the story, I told him I just didn’t feel like it, he pretended not to understand and he put himself naked in my bed, I took immediately the key to his room and went to lock myself in his room. I think he took it very badly. The next day at breakfast he looked like a beaten dog, then he went to the business meeting for which he had come and I waited around the city and I called his ex, I told him that he didn’t know me and that I had met his ex via the usual app and I wanted to know what kind of guy he was.

He was very cautious at first, then he let himself go and told me that he too had a terrible crush on that guy, but that the guy had something that he could not bear at all, he was violent, he had slapped him several times, nevertheless the guy had always pretended nothing because in practice he was afraid of his former boyfriend who was used to threatening and demanding. After this phone call that did nothing but confirm my doubts, I went to the hotel, I settled the bills, paying also for his room, I took my suitcase and I went to the station, I bought another sim for the phone and I destroyed the old one, then I came home by train.

I don’t know what he thought and frankly I don’t care to know, but one who uses to slap a guy who is in love with him is not a gay but an asshole! I also deleted the famous app. Thanks to my prudence he doesn’t know anything about me, not even my last name, I asked the hotel to keep it reserved. Perhaps sooner or later we will meet again in the streets of the city, but I will not even answer him.

The story is this. I had some doubts because I immediately trusted his ex and I didn’t listen to him, but I think I did very well and avoided very unpleasant situations, if he had felt authorized to slap me I would have thought very seriously to put a knife in his belly.
A hug.
Anonymous

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A GAY COUPLE IN A TERRIBLE ORDEAL

Hi Project,
I was really pleased to be able to talk with you last night, I absolutely needed it and I enthusiastically welcome the idea of summarizing yesterday’s speech into an email that you can then enter in the forum.

I am 31 years old, in my life I have always been convinced of having a thousand problems, from the idea that I would never find a guy who loved me at the idea of not being physically and psychologically up to a serious partner and many other things. For those things I felt bad, I felt like a nothingness and I thought I had experienced the worst, the most problematic situations of life, then I met a guy and slowly, gradually, we began to love each other. I don’t know what brought us to get together but it happened.

For a long time we couldn’t live together because we didn’t have the chance, in theory we were only two good friends, but in reality we were a couple. We didn’t see each other every day, and it happened that maybe in a week we saw each other only once, but when we were together we felt really well, we learned to love each other, to understand each other, to trust each other.

I thought I had found my serenity and surely he too thought it, but suddenly he started to accuse some disorders, he went to the doctor who sent him to the specialist and he did some very thorough instrumental examinations and it became clear that my boyfriend had a very serious health problem. I don’t go into details, but it was really a bolt from the blue.

At the moment he has quite bearable disturbances, but it will not always be that way and we have been told it, now he has begun his path of illness, which, apart from the gravity of the thing in itself, will create great problems even with work, because he is employee of a large private company and when he will have to go to the hospital for therapy he will be absent from work and so he will risk dismissal. Fortunately for me I have a good job and if it were to serve I could give him a helping hand.

At the moment he has not said anything about the illness to his parents, who are elderly, have a lot of health problems and live with him, he doesn’t want to alarm them, but sooner or later they will realize that something is wrong.

My parents know my boyfriend, who has been to my house many times with them, but they thought he was just a friend of mine. Some time ago, my father, who is 70 years old, looked at me in the eye and said: “I see you’re not quiet, what’s wrong?” And I told him everything, that I was gay and that my boyfriend was sick and he hugged me and told me: “On me and your mother, you can always count and for anything.” I felt a little comforted but I’d have preferred that it was my boyfriend to feel comforted, but he can’t even talk with his parents.

My father asked me about the hospital where my boyfriend goes, and about doctors who take care about him and he said they are serious people, he knows those environments because he too has had oncological problems, now under control.

I modified my working hours to be close to my boyfriend as much as possible, I accompany him to work and I go to take him back, I always accompany him to the hospital, the doctor who takes care about him has been told that we are a couple and didn’t make a grimace. My father at one point called Steven on the phone and Steven came to my house for lunch, it’s something quite usual for us, but this time my father told Steven something that he didn’t expect: “Louis told me everything and we (i.e. he and my mother) thought that you and Louis can feel more at ease enjoying your privacy in this apartment, I and my wife can go to a little house we have in the village nearby, which is only 15 kilometers from here, but your parents would remain alone and maybe they would take it badly, I don’t know … What do you think about?” Steven was puzzled and didn’t know what to say and I too, actually. He should have left his parents’ house and it seemed unrealistic. My father, given the perplexities, didn’t insist and said only: “The proposal is always valid, if you decide to put it into practice, it is done in two days at most”.

When I took Steven back to his house and we parted, he thought that if he had been with me in the same house he would have been calmer, even for the illness, because his parents knew nothing and in case of need they wouldn’t have known what to do. He told me: “I have to try and get my parents to accept it, but they also have my sister and they wouldn’t be alone anyway … let’s see what happens.” After not even a week, my parents went to live in the village and Steven moved to my home. He was happy to be with me, it was also a way to realize a dream, but at the base of everything there was a terrible melancholy. I saw Steven smiling and seemingly quiet but I was worried about the passage of time, everything seemed to me ephemeral and frighteningly unstable.

At the moment the situation is this, Steven goes to the hospital for checks every two months, the doctors don’t talk too much, they decide what to do step by step, I bring inside me a terrible anguish and I think about what Steven is experiencing, we speak about everything, but not about the disease, which means that he is trying to remove it and not to be too much conditioned by it.

I feel embarrassed especially for sex, I swear, Project, I never know how to behave, before we had never had problems, it all came spontaneously, now to launch the idea seems inappropriate, but in the end this is also a stupid problem. He occasionally takes the initiative, we rarely get to sex, in most cases we just smile and move on. It’s different for cuddles, now there’s a lot more tenderness than before, a little to compensate for the decrease in sexuality and mainly, I think, because now we have our intimacy, we have our own home and we can nestle one against the other to see the television or just to feel that we are there and that we love each other.

Project, I would never have thought of having to face a situation like this, which puts me to the test in a violently emotional way. I am terrified of the future, doctors don’t encourage but don’t even discourage, talk about the phase of therapy towards which you are going but never talk about long-term prospects. I don’t ask questions when we go to the hospital together. Steven asks some questions and I try to memorize the doctor’s answers and to put together the pieces of the puzzle to understand something more. We have decided not to read Wikipedia and let the doctors do their work.

Sometimes in the morning I wake up next to Steven and I start to pray for Steven, and I have never been religious, but now I find comfort in the ideas of religion. Of this I cannot talk with Stephen, not so much because he is radically rationalist and unbeliever, but because for him it would be like a further confirmation that I consider his health problem insurmountable. He too, in my opinion, doesn’t see any favorable prospects at all, but he never talks about it. Sometimes, when we hug, I wonder what he is thinking but obviously he doesn’t say anything. Those moments of silence are very intense, our way of shaking hands is already very eloquent. This too is being gay and I had never imagined it.

Now I realize how absurd the problems I had a few years ago were, now I took a bath of reality that put me in touch with human nature in its fragility. I’m learning very hard lessons, I only know that I love Steven, and I will never leave him alone, I don’t want to think of a future without Steven, this idea is terrible for me and makes me cry, because I see Steven who calmly shakes my hand, I hear his voice a little hesitant and I also see him smile, it is he who tries not to make me think and to give me courage.

Now we are at this point, Project, and no one knows what is to come. I feel profoundly melancholic, I feel like a feather carried by the wind. My parents try to be present to calm the atmosphere a little, they treat Steven as if he were a son of theirs, this consoles a little, but the underlying terrible melancholy remains. I love Steven also because he has a dignity even in this situation, and doesn’t close himself in himself, on the contrary he accepts to share his anxieties with me, without too many words but with a lot of love. I stop here, Project, because I can’t go on.
Louis

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INTERGENERATIONAL GAY RELATIONSHIPS WITHOUT SCHEMES

Hi Project,
I read the chapter on the intergenerational relationships of the manual Being Gay and I was amazed first of all because you have treated the subject, which is generally never taken seriously even by gays, and then because what I read corresponds quite well to my experience, in the sense that I saw in many documents quoted on the manual the same doubts and the same attitudes that I had myself, and then I noticed that here and there scattered in the forum, I can see traces of intergenerational relationships in some way similar to what I experienced and I’m living even now.

I am 56 years old, my name is Peter, I’m not yet old and all in all, physically, I’m still quite handsome (even if I should not be the one who says it), I’m sporty, I do sports regularly, I’m attentive to nutrition and until today I have not had serious illnesses, this pushes me to consider myself somehow still young. Of course, ten years ago I was already a mature man, but at that time I was really almost a young man, people believed that I was much younger than I really was, and at the age of 46 I met Dario (fancy name) who was 19. I, gay, or rather a gay who had put aside the idea of finding a mate, because for me being gay, at that time, it meant just finding a partner, anyway I had almost stopped looking around.

One evening I was invited to a graduation party, I go there because I knew the guy who had graduated. While I was there Dario arrives. Saying that he was beautiful it is reductive, I had never seen a guy like him, with a smile so bright, tall, blond, with blue eyes. When I saw him I thought only one thing: “What a beautiful guy!” I didn’t even think of approaching him, it was obvious that he was very young, I was only sorry to be too old. I did everything to distract myself and think of something else. I have not danced, because I never dance, I chatted a bit with the guy who had graduated, then I sat to observe.

Dario too didn’t dance, he didn’t court girls, it was the girls who were courting him, the guys didn’t even really consider him. At one point he looks me straight in the eyes, I feel like a very strong twinge, he leaves the group of girls and comes to sit next to me and tells me: “I know you’re bored! I see it!” I just smile a bit, then we exchange a few words, he notices that I’m almost embarrassed and introduces himself, I do the same, we talk a few more minutes of this and that, then he pulls out of the pocket a piece of paper, he writes his name on it and his cell phone number and passes it to me, then asks me: “Can I have yours?” I say to him: “Of course!” but I must have said it with the light in the eyes, and he replies with a wonderful smile, then returns to the small group of girls, who complain that they have been abandoned, he says that he had to say hello to an old friend (me), and returns to his previous conversations. Shortly before midnight he sits down next to me, asks me if I have a car, I say yes and he asks if I can take him home, I say to him: “Of course!” And this time too I must have told it with a lot of enthusiasm. He answers me with his usual smile. He greets his friends who thought he would stay with them until late, then we leave.

He lives far away, but not too much, 20 minutes later we are at our destination. During the trip at the beginning we talk about banalities, then, when we are almost at the destination, out of the blue he asks me: “Are you gay?” I feel my face burn with shame and embarrassment then I answer: “Yes! … ” before I can add anything else, he says: “Me too!” But he adds that it is late and that he must go home but that he will call me soon. He greets me without even shaking hands and beckons me to leave immediately. I perform.

As I go back to my house I feel dazed, I would never (and I say never) thought that something like this could happen: a 19-year-old guy who out of the blue asks a man 46 years old if he is gay and asks him it because a few minutes of dialogue were enough for him to understand it. Of course my fantasy starts to run at high speed, but then I say to myself: “What are you thinking about! Stop there! Dario is a boy!” At home I do everything not to think about him, but I feel distraught because he is not just a guy, a lot of girls run after him and I think also guys, but he confronts me with that sharp question : “Are you gay?” … and he is gay too …. Why does he ask me it? He can have all the guys he wants … why does he tell me it? Also his friends would have given him the passage in the car but he had asked for it no one else than me.

The day after he doesn’t call me, and I feel in bad shape, I had waited for that phone call but it hadn’t arrived, I was really depressed, completely on the ground, I felt like a fool and felt deluded. After midnight he calls me and says: “I didn’t call you to see if you would have called me but you didn’t call me! You probably don’t care about me!” We talked almost until dawn, it was evident that there was a total complicity between us and not because we were two gays. He told me that when he went to visit one of his friends he was fascinated by this friend’s father and he described him to me, but in practice he didn’t describe that man, it was me the one he was describing, and added: “But he was hetero …” And after a few seconds he added: “But you are not!” Now the speech was clear. We began to see each other every day, without sex, we talked a lot, we went to go shopping, we used to eat a sandwich together, he was happy, I thought that in that way, I mean without sex, we could have gone on forever, but I was wrong. He saw farther than me and in a few months we got to have sex.

His involvement was total, my somehow reticent, I had begun to love him because between us there was not only sex, we talked very much, he was looking for a comparison but he had his ideas in mind and had a very strong personality. We told each other our lives even in the most intimate aspects, my life was basically a void, there was so much imagination but nothing real, while his was much more complicated, things that I never imagined and that have conditioned him a lot.

I felt I was not the best for him, but this seemed to him to be quite relative, he fell in love with young guys several times and I often encouraged him, but those stories didn’t last long and finally we came together apparently just for reasons of sex but actually because between us there was a form of deep symbiosis. Sometimes he called me in the middle of the night and told me to go to his house, I went there, he went down into the street and we stayed in the car, he started crying, told me about his disappointments, then we made love, but in the end he repented and felt dirty, he wasn’t angry with me but with himself, but he needed to be accepted, loved, he also told me of disturbing aspects of his personality and he did it thinking that I would go away but I not only didn’t leave but I thought he really was trusting me without reservation. Now Dario is almost 30 years old, after a course of studies initially not simple, conditioned mainly by emotionality, he is now finishing his PhD in a very particular scientific discipline and is really appreciated by his colleagues and so he also regained a lot of self-esteem, which has always been his weak point.

He recently lived a long and serious love affair with a guy he was deeply in love with, but in the end that guy dumped him and he felt very bad. During that time we saw each other a lot less, now we have started seeing each other again almost every week, on Sunday, we spend the day together, we talk a lot and we also do a bit of sex but everything is very natural, we don’t ask ourselves too many questions. With me he is really unleashed, which I don’t think he does with the guys he is in love with, it is as if with those guys he especially sought the affective side and with me the sexual one, also because those guys are looking for him especially for sex while I I’m looking for his proximity and human warmth, and even for sex, of course, but sex has never been my obsession. When I’m with him I try to limit the contacts to non-risky behaviors or to those at very low risk, he initially seemed puzzled and used to do a little scene before sex because he felt braked, but then he ended up accepting limitations rather willingly, or at least without too many problems. He doesn’t have a boyfriend but I think he has other people (few and always the same) with whom he has sex from time to time. He says he doesn’t love emotional relationships and only seeks sex from me, but in fact, after 10 years, we continue to see each other and when we are together we are really free and happy at all levels. We know each other well both sexually and in personal history. I’ve never talked about this story with people I know, never at all, I live alone, so I don’t have problems with the family, I just have to be a bit careful my gossipy neighbors, because it happens that Dario comes to my house even late at night and leaves the next morning.

Basically, about this story I cannot talk with anyone, I mean talking directly about myself, but it happened to me once, only once, to hear a talk on this subject made by guys I think were gay, and I was very embittered, they pronounced ferocious judgments, rulings without appeal without understanding absolutely nothing, they had their gay couple model in mind and everything that was not on that track they considered it pathological. With Dario I don’t live anything like the gay couple relationship they have in mind, but I live a relationship that makes sense, I don’t feel frustrated at all nor did I feel jealous when he had a boyfriend, between us there is also sex, but I think it has above all the sense of the confirmation of the fact that there is an affective relationship between us of which we never speak, but perhaps it is better, because it is not the words that count. I would not want anything different from what I receive from him.

This is the relationship between us, but it has been working for 10 years now, it is not a fairy tales story, but frankly I wouldn’t change it with anything in the world. I think of him a thousand times a day and I don’t think only of sex but I think above all of his successes, his self-esteem, his dignity, the fact that he built himself by himself, that he never enslaved himself to anyone or anything, he never felt fascinated by money, he has never hurt anyone. And then, if I think he trusts me (and on the other hand I trust him the same way) I feel proud. I think that our relationship is really a way to love each other, a way that is absolutely out of scheme but it’s a way. The thing I have always admired most in him is his clear speech, not using too many words and saying even brutally what he thinks. In practice we have never quarreled, we said goodbye dozens of times but then we forgot it because the sense of being together was strong beyond any convention.
In conclusion, Project, what do you think about?
Peter62

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A GAY GUY GOES TO THE ANDROLOGIST

Hi Project,

I am a closeted thirty-year-old gay guy who lives in a very homophobic town in the rich north-east of Italy. I would like to tell you my story and ask you what you think.

Just a nod on my life until a couple of years ago, at the beginning I used to look for a real love and I never found it, maybe because I looked for it in the wrong places and with the wrong methods, then I started to go not so much for subtlety (Quiet! I have always used all the methods of prevention.)

At the age of 27, I have to say, I was a drifter of sex, in a year I had collected almost a dozen stories, which obviously were not serious things, but in the end they were even frustrating. I would have liked a normal guy who loved me and I would have gladly put the final point to all the whirlwind of my research on the apps.

One day just through an app a guy contacts me, he says he is 26 years old, we talk a bit, he’s polite, seems one not obsessed with sex, he proposes me to meet each other, I think it’s too early and I try to postpone, I expect him to disappear but it doesn’t happen. He asks me for photos but I don’t give them to him, but we keep on talking even in the following days, we talk about everything, even about sex but without overdoing it and always in a very polite way.

After three weeks of online contacts he again asks me to meet him, this time I say yes but since I don’t want problems of any kind, we agree to meet in another city and spend Saturday and Sunday together (I don’t work on Saturday). I decide to go by train so as not to be identifiable even from the license plate of the car. Note, Project, that I had never even seen a picture of him and he had never seen one of me. We meet at the station at 9.00 in the morning. I tell my parents that I have to go on a mission for two days (things like that happened other times).

I do not know who I will meet, but I feel very excited, there is something that tells me that it will not be the usual meeting “escape and flee”. When I get on the train I realize I don’t have condoms with me, but I think I can buy them there too and that they might not be useless. In the place of the appointment he is already there waiting for me, the recognition signal works (a certain newspaper under his right arm). It seems a nice guy, indeed very nice. We leave the luggage at the station depot and we go around, it’s a beautiful sunny morning.

It’s all radically different from my previous encounters, we don’t talk about sex, rather we feel a certain embarrassment, we have breakfast together, we often exchange smiles, he’s a very sweet guy, I would like to know something more about him but asking questions seems inappropriate. He knows the city, even if it is not his city and has already prepared a whole project of things to do and places to go.

I perceived his presence, there were many silences, then I asked him if he felt embarrassed and he replied: “Before seeing you, while I was waiting for you! but not now! Not at all now! And you?” “I … well I’m just fine, no problem.” Then we began to joke, to tell each other jokes. He doesn’t tell sexual jokes and uses a very clean language. We go to lunch together in a restaurant, the climate is very relaxed, peaceful, pleasant.

We walk until evening, we have dinner together, then it’s time to go to the hotel, he says: “Do you mind if we take two single rooms?” I say no, but that request cools my enthusiasm a lot. He is glad that I didn’t insist on taking a double room. We go to the hotel but there are no single rooms, he looks at me and tells me: “What can we do? Is it okay for a double room?” I spread my arms and make a sign that it’s okay too, since there’s no other way.

We enter the room, he is very embarrassed and tells me: “Now what do we do?” I tell him that I would like to have a bit of sex, I would really like it but I don’t have condoms with me and ask him if he has any, he tells me: no, but he adds that there are also the non-dangerous ways of having sex and that he especially likes them. The room is very well heated. Project, I spare you the details and I just tell you that I had never had sex like that with a guy, just mutual masturbation and a lot of physical intimacy, but it was something unique because I saw him involved in such a total way that I wouldn’t have imagined that it could even exist. It was just an exciting thing at levels I had never tried. At the end we fell asleep in each other’s arms.

In the morning we didn’t have time to repeat the experience because we had to leave the room before 10.00 o’clock. We spent the Sunday morning joking and playing with each other, then we went for lunch together and I started asking him when we could meet again. He looked at me a little embarrassed and then he told me: “There’s one thing I didn’t tell you, I’m engaged!” I felt very uncomfortable and I told him: “But how is it? You have a boyfriend and you don’t tell me?” He replied: “You didn’t understand, I have a girlfriend …”

I told him that there was something strange according to me because he didn’t seem to me a straight guy looking for distraction, he told me: “I know I’m gay, I was fine with you and I would always stay with you but I cannot, because I have a girlfriend for years and now she is part of my family and I think that in a year at most we will get married” I looked at him with a perplexed air and I asked how the sex went with the girl and he replied: “Well, somehow it works, she never noticed anything but when I do it I think about something else, I’m not straight, there’s nothing to do, if it were for me I would never have sex with a woman, when I’m there, anyway, it works all the same but it is something that I do because I must do it, and then with her I could never speak clearly because she would feel betrayed, now we are in front of everyone a very solid couple and she believes it too, I don’t think I could avoid marrying her, by now I’m too far ahead with that story, she’s a good girl but I’m not interested in girls.”

I spent the rest of the afternoon trying to get him to think, but he felt trapped and had threw in the towel, he felt resigned to being a good husband at home and a good gay, maybe with me, some Saturday nights at the hotel. He told me that he had to break away from me, that I put him in crisis, I put him in front of the responsibility of his choices but that now the choices were made and there would be no chance to go back. We took the train and we went back home.

He disappeared for two weeks, he didn’t answer to the emails or the phone, then he contacted me again, we met one afternoon and he seemed really shattered. This is what he told me:

“Here they are just caging me, I cannot stay out of it, it’s all a trap, I had to go with her for eight days in a resort abroad, all paid for by my parents! And it was a shocking thing, she was happy, I could not stand her anymore but she was the victim and I had to console her, I was forced to make love with her because otherwise she ended up in depression. She really didn’t understand anything. I thought to speak clearly but I didn’t dare to imagine her reaction and then I pretended to be worried about work reasons. I thought that in the resort we would be alone and instead her parents made us the nice surprise that they were there also them! I cannot stand it anymore! I have to go out of the cage but I don’t know how. If I said I’m gay, nobody would believe it …

“What could be done to resolve the situation? In the end we thought something that could work, he would go a couple of times to an andrologist, perhaps the first time accompanied by the girl, accusing pain in the testicles and then after the second examination it should have said that he had to do the seminogram and a few days after that the result was that he could not have children, anyway, as a gay, he would certainly not have had children from another woman.

He didn’t want to accept the whole script, it seemed to him a real hoax, but then he was aware that the alternative would be the wedding therefore he came to a milder attitude. He didn’t know whether to speak clearly with his parents, but when your parents don’t even realize that you are not well with your girlfriend and force you to go on holiday with her … to speak clearly would mean just throwing open a pot without knowing what’s inside.

In the end we have agreed all the details and all the preparatory speeches. I realize that, seen from the outside, all this seems like an expedient of the lowest alloy to avoid the coming out, but a coming out in a situation like that would have been ruinous. To realize the whole project, a low level staging, it is true, but perhaps the least traumatic solution, it took more than a month.

When he went to the girl and told her that he could not have children, the girl expected it and the recitation of the great pain had been well prepared by her family and ended with the promise to remain friends, but he wanted to return all gifts and said he preferred to permanently close an experience that had ended up being traumatic.

I summarized the whole story in a few lines but it was very demanding, stressful and even risky because, if our trick had been detected, for him it would have been a disaster, but it went well! From the following Saturday we started our meetings in the hotel in the nearby city and I think our story will continue. We’re all right together and we’re planning to change both our jobs and to move both of us to that city, away from prying eyes, he too thinks that coming out, even just in the family, is certainly inopportune. Among other things, his parents know nothing about the andrologist’s story and think that their son, the poor guy, will never marry because he cannot have children and it is good that they continue to think so.

Project, don’t look bad at me, the coming out in certain situations is not really thinkable. So we rest assured and the girl can make her life with someone who really wants her and his parents have put their soul in peace and at least there is no gossip about homosexuality because the story is all straight! Could I send him to the marriage slaughter? No! Should he expose himself to a destructive coming out? No! At least, so they are all happy and we first of all.

Let me have your news soon.
David

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GAY GUYS AND REJECTION OF SESUALITY

Hi Project,

I took a quick look at the book Being Gay, it is truly monumental, from small tastings it seems interesting to me and it is extraordinary that it can be downloaded at no cost. You have done a useful job, I don’t add other adjectives.

I am a 25-year-old guy, I live in Northern Italy, so in an environment that should be gay friendly. Here there are gay associations but, if I refer to that mythical 8% of gays, I have to conclude that those who attend associations are a small minority and I don’t tell you the comments I hear about them by a lot of people.

Where are all the other gays? I don’t see them anywhere, so even here gays are scared, and I think they do well to be afraid because the social climate is not good at all, and actually it’s even worse than it was a few years ago.

At school I didn’t know a single gay guy, no one declared himself, and exposing himself too much was dangerous. The dating sites and the App, which everyone talks about, are not for me, they seem to me a squalid thing. My gay life, let’s call it so, started at university.

I attended and I’m finishing up attending a faculty with few students, not even forty the first year and then around 30 or even less until the end, they are almost all guys, girls are quite rare, in my course I think they are only five, well, a few weeks after the start of the lessons of my first year I realized that, let’s say, I was not alone, and that the compulsory attendance was not only useful for the exams but also to build relationships with the other guys.

In practice, the university works on two levels, one formal, official, in which there are relationships with teachers, objectively very technical and very limited, even if we are very few, because the courses are short and are very dense with content, and the other underground, but not too much, in which the very fact of being together from morning to night creates in us, young people, a climate of collaboration that favors the birth of friendships, and, in some cases, even something more.

In the morning we start the lessons at 8.00 and then, with various intervals we finish around 17.00. We eat at the canteen, perhaps at different times, depending on the lessons, but it is a very small service, only for our faculty and we study practically all together, even if divided into groups. Even those who live close to the university don’t come home, because together we feel good. I do not speak of large groups but groups of three or four guys, we have two study rooms for each year of the course and these rooms are also well equipped. Groups should be formed on the basis of uniform interests, and that is what has happened, but in general it is not a matter of study interests.

I don’t even know how it happened, but it happened, I found myself with two other colleagues, we chose each other instinctively, we were fine together, at the beginning we didn’t know at all that we were three gays, for me, it was a completely new world to be discovered, I felt that with those guys the relationship was different from what I had with others, there was no competition, there was only a great desire to be together, to work together and even more.

The two guys of my small group of study, Louis and Antony, were very different, Louis was a nice guy, but he was not my type, he was pleasant, reassuring, but physically attracted me little, while Antony was very insecure, always hesitant, he was tall, blond and with blue eyes, with hair a little longish, he was a bit neurotic and complexed by the fear of being out of place, to annoy, he apologized for everything, even for very trivial things, with him I too felt a little anxious because I didn’t want to make him feel uncomfortable.

I knew almost immediately that Louis was gay, because it was he who told me it: “to avoid misunderstandings”, he added. I avoided to tell him that I too was gay. Louis was fine with me and with Antony, but from what I understood he had a boyfriend and so he had his life, we were his study friends and maybe we would have also become friends of confidences, but his basic interests were elsewhere.

With Antony things were very different, when we were alone together we felt a certain embarrassment, we often talked about Louis or other guys. At one point Antony told me: “Do you know that Louis is gay? He told me it this morning …” I replied that I knew, I saw a moment of perplexity on the face of Antony, I think he wondered why I hadn’t told him, but he didn’t comment and I think he appreciated my discretion. I was hoping that the dialogue on the subject would widen but it didn’t happen and it ended there.

We felt very well when we were there, the three of us, but when I was alone with Antony I didn’t know what to say or what to do, he had an embarrassed and embarrassing behavior, he never spoke of girls and even less of guys but it seemed to me that a good relationship had been created between us.

When we had to separate, in the evening, none of us took the initiative, and a quarter of an hour after a quarter of an hour we came home very late almost every night, but we didn’t talk too much, we spent almost all the time in silence. Among other things, when I was alone with him I was also embarrassed because I was almost always in erection and I was afraid that he would notice. From what I saw, he didn’t even give a minimum sign of erection and I didn’t like this thing at all.

The hypothesis that he was gay didn’t seem too realistic to me despite the fact that he tended to stay always with me. I feared that our relationship could turn into a relationship of dependency but in a sense I felt very attracted to Antony. I came to think that I should tell him that I was gay, because if he had found out it by himself or if he knew it from others he might feel uncomfortable.

One of the long nights spent walking back and forth around the city, I took courage and told him it, he answered me: “Don’t worry, I had understood it for some time” I asked him how he had understood it and he told me: “When you stay with me you’re hard all the time …” I asked him: “Does this embarrass you?” He replied: “If I felt embarrassed I would not be here …” Then he continued: “You want to know if I’m gay too? “I nodded and he said:” Yes, I feel gay, or at least I don’t feel straight but sex is a bit of an obsession and a bit of a frustration for me … ” And then we finally entered the topic.

This was more or less the speech:

“I’ve never fallen in love with a girl, while when I’m close to you I feel at ease, and I feel at ease even if you are in erection and perhaps especially for that. You will tell me that I am stupid, but I am really complexed by these things, I think I am very feminine, I don’t feel like a woman, but I think I have female physical movements and attitudes.”
“Who? You? No! Not at all!”
“You also saw Louis, he too is gay, but he is very masculine, no one would take him for gay …”
“No! Antony, no! Take these things off your head! You’re a beautiful guy, and you’re very masculine, you’re not rough, you’re not massive but thin, but rest assured that you’re 100% masculine … ”
“Well … maybe … ”
“But why do you feel conditioned in sex?”
“For me, sex has never been a simple thing, I’ve never been with anyone … ”
“Not even me if this is the problem … ”
“Yes, but you go into erection when I’m there, I on the contrary feel only embarrassed, I’m completely stuck, I think I would feel totally uncomfortable being with a guy … ”
“I think these are just fears, when it happens you will realize that it’s a very simple thing … ”
“I don’t think it will ever happen … ”
“But at least when you do it by yourself … there are no fears … ”
“When I do it by myself, as you say, and it’s a very rare thing, afterwards, I feel sick … ”
“But why? There’s nothing wrong … ”
“I’ll tell you something that nobody knows … I as a child, not even as a child, as a boy, because the first time it happened I was 14, I was raped by an uncle, and the story went on for a month, I was really afraid of him, at the end I couldn’t stand him anymore, I threatened him that if he came back I would have told my father and he disappeared. He was 44 years old and I have been really raped from behind … I don’t tell you how I felt when I experienced my first gay feelings, something disgusting, I don’t want to be gay, being gay sucks me … now maybe you can understand … ”
“Oh my God I would never have imagined, if you want I take you home, I don’t want to create difficulties of any kind … ”
“Please shut up! … Let me go on with what I’m saying, I am a victim of homosexuality and I don’t want to be gay, I don’t even know if you can understand such a thing, but even if the memory of those things really disgusts me, I ended up becoming gay just for that reason … ”
“No, Antony, now it’s you the one who has to shut up … but which “to become”? And then you say that your uncle was was gay but I don’t think so.”
“What do you mean?”
“I’m gay, I have the pleasure of being near you, even sexual pleasure, it’s like that and I’m not ashamed at all of this, but I never imagined penetrating a guy from behind, really never.”
“That’s because you were been given an education.”
“No! This is because I’m gay!”
“I didn’t understand … what does it mean?”

And there, dear Project, I took my smartphone and I had him read a piece of your book where you talk about these things. He was initially perplexed, then he went on to read, after a few minutes he looked at me and asked me: “So then my uncle could even be straight? … ” I told him that he probably was, because what he did was not a gay behavior. He was perplexed, confused, he insisted on asking me if I had ever had fantasies of that kind and I told him that it really had never happened.

The speech didn’t seem to him according to what he had seen in some videos in which anal penetration was always present in practice. I told him to read all your article and also the part of the book about the hetero-curious and I drove him home. He was puzzled, very meditative, but occasionally he made some gesture of satisfaction and even a few sketchy smiles.

The day after everything went on easily at university as if nothing had happened; immediately after 5.00 pm he asked me to take him home, but we went around in the car until late at night. He had read the book and seemed to have discovered a world, he told me: “Reading the book I got the very clear impression that my uncle was not gay at all and I realized that instead my fantasies are really gay. My uncle paid no attention to my penis, just zero, he never masturbated me and I was over 14 years old and I would have reacted but he never did, but he wanted me to have oral sex to him, but never did it to me, and above all there had to be the anal penetration and there was also something that I didn’t understand at all, that is the attention to my nipples, a really anomalous thing, to the nipples yes and to the penis no! Actually the overall picture was very different form that of real gay fantasies, isn’t it? Even I have never had fantasies of anal penetration but I thought it was something only mine, a refusal due to the abuse, but it seems that it is a very common thing among gays”

Since Antony was talking to me so freely I too felt obliged to do so and he was very intrigued by that speech that he didn’t expect at all. It was now night and there was little light, he asked me if I was hard, I said yes, he asked if he could touch it from outside, I said yes, he touched it for about ten seconds, then he looked at me and said: thank you! He apologized for the fact that he could not reciprocate, because he wasn’t in erection, then he thought just a second and told me: “Come on, check it, it’s right that we’re on par!”

In the following days we talked a lot less because the exams were coming and we only studied, in three at the university and then in two at my house, a single-room apartment where I lived alone because I was away from home. He came to stay at my house, because it is within a stone’s throw from the faculty. We studied a lot, we slept together in the same bed, but between us there has never been sex, not even at the minimum level. After 15 days of overwork we passed the three exams we had planned. I expected him to move back to his house but he asked me to stay, I obviously said yes.

We had long evenings to spend together and we talked a lot in a totally free way, we talked about our families, our desires and obviously also about sex. I could understand that the memory of the violence troubled him deeply and even if he too began to accept the idea that his uncle was not gay at all, still he still had many doubts about it, he asked me to talk to him about my sexual fantasies and I did, he listened to me with the utmost attention, told me that the penis seemed to him an undesirable thing, associated only to violence and this fact tore him because he also experienced homosexual fantasies but mixed with feelings of rejection. I asked him if he had felt feelings of repulsion when I had made him touch it from above my trousers and he simply replied: no!

He told me he was happy to be with me, even because I had never pressed him for any reason and that I was a positive image of gays, and finally he added: “if you are gay, I too can be so”. I liked this sentence very much and I told him enthusiastically but he replied that anyway it wouldn’t have been easy for him, that he needed time and that I had to be patient, even if we slept in the same bed.

One day, after a day of intense study we went to sleep. We turned off the light but I felt that he had not turned the other way as he always did but had remained turned towards me. At a certain moment he asks me: “Are you hard now?” I say yes and he asks me if he can touch it, I say yes and he touches it very gently, after a while he says to me: “Touch mine!” And I feel that he is hard too. He tells me that it’s the first time that this happens to him spontaneously and that he doesn’t feel rejection neither touching me nor being touched, then he adds that he doesn’t want to go any further and we stop touching but we keep talking, he tells me he’s happy but that he doesn’t want to delude himself too much and above all he doesn’t want to delude me.

We get up, get dressed, I put myself on the sofa and he lies there, resting his head on my legs. He asks me: “Do you mind?” I only answer him with a smile and he says: “I have to get used to the physical contact … I have never done such a thing.” It is very late and falls asleep on my knees, I don’t move him. When it starts to dawn I take him in my arms and bring him back to bed. He’s really a nice guy, or rather, it looks beautiful to me. I lie in bed next to him and I fall asleep too.

In the following days he seems to have completely forgotten about what had happened between us, I don’t say anything but when I sit on the couch to see the TV he almost always comes to lie down on my legs and I feel his warmth. One evening, before going to sleep, he asks me to show me naked because it has never happened before, I smile and I completely undress in front of him and I start to get a hard-on, he tells me I’m beautiful, then he undresses and he too is in erection, he comes close and hugs me tight, but very tight, almost hurting me, then asks me if we can sleep naked, of course I say yes, I put only one more cover on the bed because it’s a bit cold. We hug tightly in bed and we stay like this for very long minutes.

The next day it was as if nothing had happened between us, not in the sense that there was disinterest, but as if what had happened was absolutely normal. There was certainly more physical contact between us, there were more hugs, we stroked our hands, we leaned against each other when we were sitting on the couch, but there were no sexual contacts, nevertheless, despite this I felt happy, I saw him smile, play, make jokes, it was a beautiful thing.

One evening I see him very discouraged, he keeps me at a distance, I try to understand why and he tells me that he tried to masturbate thinking of me but that the thing didn’t arrive to its obvious end because he felt a terrible sense of rejection, something very strong, not for me but for the idea of sex in itself, it seemed to him like a dirty thing almost a way to do violence against me, to play with my image, something like a lack of respect. In short, he was really uncomfortable and I had the distinct feeling that there was very little to do and that he would never have abandoned the obsessive memory of violence. I hugged him, but he was totally passive, then I said to him: “I love you, Antony!” He replied: “I’ll never have sex with you …” I told him: “I’m just worried about losing you and this would be devastating for me … ” He told me: “I cannot do anything, I tried, but I cannot … ” I didn’t know what to say, maybe a few days before it seemed all too easy, but slowly I was beginning to doubt that with Antony I could create a story, let’s say so, a normal story, that is even with a bit of sex, I don’t say much, but at least a little to convince me that he loved me and didn’t consider me only in relation to the memory of violence. I was beginning to understand that the problem was more serious than I had imagined.

We continued to live together but we removed any behavior that could have even a vague sexual implication, we continued to sleep in the same bed but always wearing pajamas, even during the summer, and he stopped lieing on my legs when we see the TV. We are good friends, yes, true friends, friends who talk about everything with the utmost sincerity, I love him deeply but slowly I lost the confidence that Antony can become my boyfriend. It’s been years, almost four years now, Antony and I still live together, sometimes there was even a minimal attempt to sexual approach between us, that has brought more frustration and disappointment than anything else. I think Antony has in fact put aside the idea, I don’t know if we will ever come to share sex, I have many doubts about it, but I know that without Antony I would feel lost.

I never imagined that I could live my life like this, and yet I feel that this is my life, I always hope that things can change, but the first rule, for me, must be the absolute respect for Antony and his problems. For me it is not a renunciation, I have made my choice and I don’t think I would be able to live a different life.

Antony and I really love each other and we are still young and something could always change, but our love will not fail under any circumstances.

I embrace you, Project, or I hope your work will be useful for Antony as it was useful for me.
Charles
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In conclusion, I must state that the e-mail above is reported in the forum with the consent of both protagonists of the story. The text is in the form of an email but has been agreed so as to avoid any risk for privacy and to be as clear as possible. In particular, the references to the faculty have been significantly modified for reasons of privacy. I must emphasize that, if it is true that this story deals with the consequences of violence and sexual abuse, the situation described is certainly not the worst, because violence and sexual abuse can really have tragic consequences. The two guys mentioned in the story you read, have built a very strong emotional relationship in which sexuality, even if limited and denied is somehow strongly present. I have to underline that I happened several times to talk with guys who had suffered violence or abuse and I could see how much these episodes have weighed on their sexuality and their emotional life.
Project

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