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
___________
 
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
 __________
 
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
___________
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
Advertisements

GAY GUYS BETWEEN APPS AND CAMS

Hi Project,
I read a lot on your forum and also the manual Being Gay and I breathed a sigh of relief, from these readings comes out an image of gay life that is very close to what I live. I had surfed a lot on the Internet looking for something realistic, but frankly I was always disappointed. I also spent a period approaching chats and apps dedicated to gays and there, for me, it was just like going to explore the moon. I wondered: but how is it possible that there are no “normal” gay guys, that is guys not obsessed with sex and no too much engaged with the gay movement, guys who mustn’t necessarily have a flag. I, with one exception that you will soon understand, have never seen the classic next door gay guy. Ok, we are few, even if not very few, but I didn’t see even a single gay guy and I didn’t even perceive a vague trace of them, just zero!

I’m 26 years old, throughout the university period I was very careful to spy on possible gay signals but I didn’t find any, or at least some clues were so labile that I was discouraged from going forward at any level. Then I found Gay Project, there were many beautiful testimonies, but, Project, are all old, even several years old, of this year there is very little, almost nothing, in short, Project, gay guys have escaped also from Gay Project! Where did they go? I think in the apps that explode for how many people you can find there, but it’s a shame, because the forum serves to reflect and understand something of the lives of others and also of one’s own live. However, I close this parenthesis and come to the main motivation for my email. In practice, the story is about my relationship with the chats and some people known in chat, especially with one.

A couple of years ago, after a thousand hesitations, after doubts, scruples and everything you want, I register on a famous app for gay dating, I don’t name it, but I think you understand what I mean. When I enter for the first time I feel like Pinocchio in the Country of the toys. I said to myself: “But it’s all so easy! But how did I not understand it before? I was totally stupid!” I get the first contact. I expect something very rough: four questions and then to the point! But no, I find a very kind guy who asks me how long I have been using the app, what is my name, in which region of Italy I am, etc. etc., in practice a normal chat, then asks me if we can see each other on cam, here I remain very perplexed, a little I had to imagine it, but then and there I felt caught on the counterattack, I finally told him that I didn’t feel like doing it, he tried to insist, but I didn’t change my mind and then he greeted me with a very characteristic phrase: “So what are you doing here?”

However, that experience put me in front of a Shakespearean doubt that I had to solve: “Cam or not cam?” In the end I told myself that app without cam makes no sense and I decided that I would show up on cam (dressed, of course !). At the next contact, more or less the same ritual, a little chatter and then the request to go on cam. I open the cam, but I find myself in front of a guy who doesn’t inspire me: long dirty nails, greasy hair, no! Just repellent and moreover probably over 40! Before making him talk I told him brutally: “You’re not my type, I’m not interested, bye!” He replied with unspeakable insults: “Piece of sh.t … you’re beautiful! Ugly asshole!!” Then I closed and it ended there.

After an abstinence from the app lasted a few days, I try again, at the beginning the script is more or less the usual, we open the cam, well, this time I have to say that the guy gives me a good impression, he’s not the guy of my dreams, but I think it’s worth trying with him, but he immediately freezes me: “No, forget it! You’re not my type, I like more fat guys, I’m sorry, Bye!” After having been put down this way, I deleted the app, but a couple of months later I downloaded it again and this time at the first shot I make bingo, I like the guy, he’s young, he says he’s 23 years old, moreover he’s nice and he doesn’t close the cam but goes on chatting.

We speak, in practice never talk about sex, but he doesn’t even talk about women as happened with a guy I had met in a chat. Let’s say this he was not bad, we spend a week chatting and he never talks about sex, ok, I tell myself that maybe he’s a bit ‘inhibited, on the other hand he’s young, we spend chatting another week and we talk about everything from fractals to quarks, from mandalas to coelacanth but we never talk about sex. I have never endured those who speak immediately about sex, but before or after we must come to the point.

I do not know whether to start the speech, but I don’t even know where to start from, I let him talk, but he starts to talk about Chinese cinema and things like that, so I cannot stand him anymore and I say to him: “But why did you look for me on the app? And he told me, I looked for you because I know you well … ” I tell him that I had never seen him and he answers me in a completely unexpected way: “If you are referring to what you saw in cam, that’s not me, he’s a friend who made himself available … ” I began to be afraid because I didn’t know who I was talking to and I feared something bad, like blackmail or maybe he could also have been a psychopath. He told me: “I know many things about you! I know that this morning you went late to work …”

Here I began to really worry, he could be some of my work colleagues, it seemed strange that someone followed my movements and spied on me, I didn’t understand what motivation could lead to similar things. Then before I wrote my answer he closed. I felt agitated, I didn’t sleep at night. Who could be interested in spying on me? And if the guy knew I was late at work he could only be one of my colleagues. In the morning I go to work, but I have the impression that nothing has changed, the three colleagues with whom I work and sometimes I even chat a bit every day don’t show signs of any kind. Things are not clear at all.

Who could know that I had arrived late for work? The guy does not show up for two days, I don’t know if I feel more comfortable or more agitated, then I get a message: “You’re puzzled eh … I can understand you!” I tried to make myself feel calm and to widen the speech in order to have some more elements to understand what was happening. He replied: “I feel that you are worried and that you pretend not to be, you must learn to recite better.” I was puzzled and asked him: “Who are you? What do you want from me?” He replied: “I’m your conscience! And I want to bring you to think a little bit. I know you, I know that today at the bar you didn’t have the usual breakfast, you chose something different, but why? Maybe are you agitated?” “But I totally ban you and close this shit of an app!” “Certainly you can do it, but the idea of being controlled will remain, there are so many ways … ” And he closed.

I tried to remember who was near me at the bar but I had not noticed anyone, at least I had ruled out that it was a work colleague, because in the morning at the bar there was nobody I knew, but someone obviously knew me. However, in the following days the guy would not have returned to my bar, of this I could be sure. He said he was my conscience and wanted to make me think. Could he be a person I don’t know? But what interest would push a stranger to make all this comedy? However, for every good purpose I banned him and I deleted the app again.

A few days later I went into a chat where I used to go sometimes even before, and I got a call from a stranger with nickname “Mattew92-bis” and it alarmed me because Mattew92 was my nickname. He asks me: “How are you?” I ask him right away if we know each other and he says “Sure!” Then he adds: “You did well to delete the app, but what are you looking for here?” I told him: “But who are you? Because you are becoming an obsession for me!” He replied: “No! Just shut down the chat and I disappear!” And I said to him: “But then I find you somewhere else?” He just said, “We’ll see” and he broke off.

I permanently closed my account on the chat and then I came back to it with a different nick, but he was still there and told me: “Why are you playing with me? What do you do you? You get out and then re-enter?” I insist: “Who are you? If you don’t tell me, I go to the police.” He said to me: “And if I were the police?” I insisted, “Are you a cop?” And he closed. I was really scared and didn’t know what to expect, then I received an email from “Mattew92-bis”, I quote it below.

“Hello Matthew, from now you will not hear me again, I’m sorry if I made you worry, my name is Matthew too, and I was born the same year and the same month you were born, but a few days later. I live in front of your house, you’ve never noticed me but I have watched you for a long time, you leave the window open and you have a mirror behind your back that allows me to see what you do at the PC even if you don’t know, I know you’re gay, don’t worry, because I’m gay too, and I’ll not disgrace you, the day you were late at work I followed you from home to where you work, when you had breakfast differently I was in the bar, but you didn’t even notice me, when you enter the chat I see it immediately and I also know your nick, for the application I have a version a little modified by me, I can detect gays that I have around me but they cannot detect me because my location is fixed and always in the same place. If you look at the window you can see from where I look at you: there is a green tent with drawn circles, one of those circles is a hole and from there I look at you with a powerful telescope. Now probably you too will put a tent behind the window, and I will not have my show anymore, but, instead of chasing guys on apps and chats, why don’t you come visit me? You are really a nice guy, I … well … it’s not up me to judge, but I am attaching a photo of me, so you can understand who I am! I wait for you, now you know where to find me! Please note that I’m not looking for sex, then if sex comes by itself, ok, but I’m looking for a serious gay friend and I know it could be you, if you’ll ever forgive me.”

I opened the picture and it occurred to me that I had seen that guy a couple of times in passing and he was also a handsome guy. I took courage and went to his house. I told him that he had made me worry a lot, and that he finally made the voyeur. He replied: “Yes, it’s true, it started like this, but then you really intrigued me.”

Actually he was not looking for sex, I don’t know if there will be sex sooner or later, I hope so, but I’m fine even without sex, I found a totally unexpected friend. He didn’t want me to go to chats because he wanted me to think only of him, now we see each other every day, because he lives right in the building in front of mine, he’s a guy with a monstrous intelligence and he really cares about me. Where the story will end up I don’t know but it seems like a good story and then, seen closely he’s just beautiful, sweet but also confident, reassuring.

Well, I was not expecting a coming out like that. I didn’t put any curtains at the window, I saw his telescope with which he spied on me, it was a huge, very heavy, professional tool, he told me was equipped with a 35 cm mirror, and you could see everything even the smallest details. He told me that the first thing that had struck him was that in my house there were never girls and that everything started from there, a beautiful guy (he says I’m beautiful), no girls … the thing must be deeply analyzed! And he did bingo! He made me shit with fear but now we are two gay friends! And he is not a pathological case as I had feared!
I hug you, Project, and thanks for your skype contact, I’ll call you soon.
Mattew92

___________

If you like, you can join the discussion on this post on Gay Project Forum: http://gayprojectforum.altervista.org/T-gay-guys-between-apps-and-cams

GAYS AND REPRESSED INSTINCTS

The following is a discussion coming from the Gay Project forum.

“Hello Project, I’ve been reading your site for a long time, it’s a serious matter, an absolute exception on the net, and it is comforting to know that there are such sites, for me it was really useful and I feel at ease there. I’m 23 years old, practically I’m not out with anyone but let’s say I’ve often been on the verge of doing things that would seem completely wrong to you. I read in the forum of guys who know how to control themselves, who can live waiting for a serious occasion, but I feel that I’m going to explode and I will not be able to do what they do for a long time.

It’s about three years that my life has completely changed, I can say that up to 20 years I was totally repressed, a thousand complexes to the limits of the absurd: I never went to the sea, never on the beach, never in swimsuit, absolutely never, I could not sleep with another person in the room, I could not stand the idea of physical proximity, I don’t say the contact but just to be 50 cm away, and this happens both with guys and girls, I always felt uncomfortable with people, as if they could be able to read me inside and understand my secret and above all I tried to repress myself in the most ruthless way, even not eating or drinking to make my body feel not well because this way, according to my opinion, things related to sex wouldn’t have come through my head.

All this more or less until three years ago, then I met a guy and I got a crush on him and I threw away all my taboos and I changed my attitude radically, not in public because I’m afraid of people’s reactions but I don’t repress myself anymore, I feel very strong sexual impulses and I don’t fight them anymore, on the contrary I try to cultivate them.

Before I knew that guy, there was pornography, I liked it but it seemed to me like a false thing and I wanted a real thing. I made a thousand films inside my mind to understand how it would be with a guy, but then there were only films in my imagination. I never said anything to that guy and I will not do it because I think he is straight, but I can see that he doesn’t care about me, but I feel attracted to him just like by a strong magnetic force. I knew everything about him by looking for information around, I even took pictures of him from a distance and he didn’t notice it. You can imagine what I do with his photos. The porn photos don’t excite me, but the photos of that guy fully dressed send me into orbit, apart from the physiological reactions, I live dreaming of being with him in every sense, I try to imagine (all fancy) how he would react if I put into practice what comes to my mind. Sometimes when I’m close to him I feel the irrepressible instinct to embrace him and not only, I think you understand what I mean.

Project, I cannot take it anymore, I know he’s probably straight, I know that I could ruin my reputation and that mine is a homophobic country, but staying close to this guy and stop myself it’s too difficult for me, I cannot handle it anymore. But basically why cannot I tell him that I fell in love with him? A smile would suffice me, it would be enough for me to understand that he doesn’t feel offended. But why do I have to repress myself like that? What if I told him? What would happen If I committed this madness? I asked him if he likes sports, you know, maybe if he had gone to the gym I would have gone too, so, almost casually, but no! He doesn’t go anywhere: study and church, or rather, study, church and girl, but about the girl he’s not enthusiastic, he talks about it as an obvious thing but I’ve seen other guys that, when they talk about their girl, their eyes shine, but he is not so, he seems almost neutral. But how does this guy live sex? Between the church and a girl whom he doesn’t love?

I tried to do some little experiments to see how he reacts but he doesn’t react, maybe he does not give a damn about it, but how does a guy like him drop the opportunities, I don’t say of who knows what, but to talk to me. With me he speaks, he answers me, but he never takes an initiative. But why does such a handsome guy choose to sacrifice his sexuality? And what for? I would do anything for him. Once I saw him with the girl, she scolded him, bossed him around and he let her do, and I felt an anger that I do not tell you. But good heavens! You could enjoy your life and instead nothing! You act like a codfish under a girl who has taken you for her servant cavalier and you don’t even notice that I am melting for you! Am I a fool, Project? But why did I fall in love with this codfish? He has a very sweet smile, but he’s a real codfish and I go on dreaming and throw away my life like that. I’ve been doing this for almost three years, and maybe I’d do well to tell him, so if he sends me to hell, at least, with him, I break my addiction because I cannot take it anymore.

A straight guy declares himself and things go how they must go, but I cannot do it. Well that’s enough, but what have I gained from not repressing me anymore? I understood that anyway nothing will change! I’m very nearly to jump on him and let things go their way. If I think that he could also answer me that he loves me my blood boils. I cannot go on like this! Bye Bye!”

Alyosha answers: I read in your post a beautiful transport that really involved me. First of all, I think it’s nice to allow yourself to live certain things, stimulating and somewhat overwhelming. I write it this way, of course the author of the post will not agree, because the post, when one reads it attentively, seems even too much rational. But maybe you’re following you beautiful codfish as you call him, for so long just because you know he’s straight. I go to explain.

For what I think, or better I see, starting from the things you write, this guy has helped you so much. But maybe you let him help you, maybe you were the one you needed to find, so to say, a “container” into which to pour those impulses, desires and falling in love that were born. The fact that he’s straight can certainly depend on the obvious randomness because there are more straight guys than gays in this world, but I think that’s what allowed you to start to loosen yourself, to let yourself go, at least at the beginning, knowing that a physical contact with him anyway could never have happened. Perhaps this basically relaxed you and put you in the right position to experience new things with serenity and sufficient spontaneity.

I wrote all my reasoning just to tell you that falling in love is a fantastic thing and certainly the driving force for any relationship. But the relationships, so say, unilateral are one thing, the couple life is another. Maybe it happens that the story seen from the outside, it appears just as you see it: he is repressed and she is omnivorous and despot. But it is you who see things like this. In relationships there is always a balance at the end and the balances are never perfect as you would expect, but they work.

In short, I wonder how much you feel ready to live a real relationship with all that this entails. Maybe in this path in stages you should try to take the next step that is then to know those like you, because with a straight guy and moreover engaged, I think there is nothing to do, neither in terms of relationship, nor in terms of escapade. On the rest then it’s up to you to choose how to live your things, and this has a lot to do with what one is and what he wants from life and I think that homosexuality has little to do with this.

On the initial problem that I read, instead, I want to speak only according to my experience and I answer “yes” to your implicit statement: behind this “waiting for a serious opportunity” as you say, there is a fear of being seriously involved. So, in this regard, I say what I think. It is not so much a matter of waiting for a serious story in my opinion. Stories cannot be born serious and expecting that they are serious from the beginning leads in fact to not living anything.

I think that there are not “wrong” things but rather “dangerous” things. And finally that we should rather have a serious way of doing things. I certainly cannot tell you how much all this enchains, forces the sexual drive and the objective desire of the desired person. I don’t even know what remains after, when that absolute transport, binding, deaf to whatever, is faded. What happens next when that passionate bond tries to transform into a couple’s life with his daily life, I certainly cannot tell you. And so I conclude like this, with things I don’t know yet.

Nicomaco answers: I read with interest this new post and the first answer of Alyosha, very shareable. The protagonist of this story has nothing to reproach himself for: he realized he had a crush, he tried to do some little experiments to check how his friend reacts and these have failed. Peace. We need to live with it. It’s not easy. But you have to do it (it happened even to me at least a couple of times). There is no symmetrical relationship and therefore it is necessary to desist. What I too would feel to discourage is to raise the roll and do nonsense (for example: declaring to be hopelessly in love with him), because this would be equivalent to making a jump in the dark without a parachute.

Is there nothing good from this experience? In my opinion, something good remains! And it is to have lived consciously the falling in love, even if unrequited, after a period of strong repression. And then it doesn’t seem to me that a straight guy declares himself always and in any case (and even less to already engaged girls). A straight friend of mine even told me that it was much more beautiful for him to be in love even if he didn’t show it, than declaring it, that it was more beautiful to love that be loved . . . it sounds strange, I know! That’s not all, but it’s already something! And then life is long!

Pavloss answers: Hello, first of all it’s good that you let yourself go writing about how you feel and how you live your affection and sex. It’s good because at least you’re out of a certain isolation that hurts too much. Secondly, I think that what you live is a kind of reaction to a long period of compression and denial. When you open a pressure cooker, after it has been boiling for a while, it could actually burst and that’s what’s happening to you. The strong risk is to project into a person all your desires and your expectations. No, this is not good, especially because you end up obeying your wishes rather than reading reality for what it is. Reality is NOT very much as we want it and maturity consists in knowing how to take note of it without suffering too much. I’m sure you can find a friend, a companion, maybe not under your house, but certainly more open than this guy you talk to, who, most likely, doesn’t care too much about you. It is true that the hetero life, in some respects, is much easier but this should not depress you. You must find your balance in which you love life and you love yourself, in which you can build a network of relationships that make you feel good. I think two opposites are to be avoided: closing yourself up until you get hurt (as happened to you), opening yourself up to the point of projecting unattainable expectations into others. Finding a good guy as a friend or as lover is not impossible but he is certainly not around the corner of the street and perhaps not even in your own city. Conquering what is worth requires some effort and it is difficult but it is normal and is part of life. Courage, therefore, and be proud of the fact that you live authentically, despite the many difficulties we all know, don’t get depressed and go on !! An important detail: you say you’ve been following him for three years … three? If in three years he has not realized practically anything it’s certain and sure that he is not interested in you from that point of view. I too have “lost” years behind beautiful, good, sweet people but with whom I have never combined anything. Don’t make this mistake. One thing is friendship, but you want more, it’s obvious. If you want more, then, don’t insist in a direction that only makes you feel bad. At best you would do well to tell him everything in order to get a clear answer from him and finally get away from him.

Nicomaco answers: Even the last posts seem to me very shareable and balanced. Of course, talking about it in a forum is not like talking about it in real life, what is much more complex. However, if I were in your shoes, I would be prudent to express certain feelings to a friend who most likely has other tastes. You can know only by yourself if this is the right thing and above all if your friend doesn’t have any prejudices about gay affectivity. I say this only to suggest you avoid other suffering, given that for the first time you have experienced a very beautiful moment of falling in love. Instead I would look at the positive aspect of the story. Falling in love means finally opening up to others and being a little more confident. And this should not be wasted, but should be cultivated in other directions.

pavese30 answers: Hello, to be out of the isolation created by you is already a lot, since in reality then you have to deal with the isolation created by the rest of the world that does not accept you much, even if today it’s fashionable to show at least a little bit of openness, I see anyway a growing intolerance in the facts. We must add also the lack of commitment of the youngest people towards the Gay Cause and towards the sexual freedom in general, many of them rely on the successes acquired by assuming that they are definitive. Regarding the guy, I would say that manifesting sympathy is one thing, to be gay inside is another. You yourself know the self-defense mechanisms, which can also become self-destruction mechanisms: until the spark is born, even if he is gay, he doesn’t open. I would say keep him as a friend and don’t expose yourself to gossip of the stupid people of the country, don’t try to get everything by risking everything with the first who made you lose your mind! If the opportunity comes, get it, don’t let it escape, meanwhile look at the rest of the world. Bye Bye!

_____________

If you like, you can join the discussion on this post on Gay Project Forum: http://gayprojectforum.altervista.org/T-gays-and-repressed-instincts

GAY GUYS AND SEXUAL INTERGENERATIONAL FANTASIES

Hi Project, I wanted to thank you for everything you do, now I feel really better. I made you spend the night chatting but I understood many things. You’re right, being gay is not just about sex and looking for a guy doesn’t have to become a fixed idea, many other things are needed.

I had never talked about intimate things as we talked yesterday but it was all very easy. For a guy it can be embarrassing because one is used to thinking of certain things only as pornography, in short, as something that shouldn’t be done and that if you do it, you must be ashamed of and you don’t have to talk about it with anyone, you are afraid of being judged badly, to be considered one who doesn’t want to grow up. And then I could not talk about these things with anyone. My mother … I never heard her talk about sex under any circumstances and my father all the same.

Talking with a priest, maybe in confession, but they don’t even listen to you. With a doctor who is also family friend obviously it is unthinkable. With friends it ends up in ironic smiles and stupid jokes. At 21 I never had, and I say never, the opportunity to talk about these things seriously.

I’ve always had a lot of complexes with a word that was a bit my torture from sixteen years old onwards, the word is “normal”. Is it normal what I’m doing? If I react like this is it normal? Etc. etc .. Then the idea of having a guy even if I’m not in love with anyone, having a boyfriend just to have sex with him, because this is normal while masturbate is not normal, it’s a young boys thing, … stuff of this kind. And I think if I hadn’t arrived on your blog I would have ended up looking for a guy anyway just to try to be normal at least as a gay.

I never asked myself whether being gay was or wasn’t normal, let’s say that for me it was not, but it was my way of being and I ended up accepting it, also because the idea of going with a girl for me doesn’t really exist, I couldn’t do it at any level. I never thought of a girl in terms of sex and even as a friend, perhaps, superficially, it could be okay, but as a true friendship, that you can tell her everything, with a girl for me it’s impossible, because a girl understands certain things her way, maybe even a straight guy understands the same things from outside but it’s anyway more acceptable.

I’ve always seen the fact of being gay as a sexual only matter, or rather, I tried to devalue to the maximum the feelings towards other guys or, better, towards male people no longer boys, because my obsession with not being normal, you made me understand it last night, it’s really related to the fact that I fall in love with adult men and I never considered normal such inclination. You don’t know how many times I told myself that I would be left alone because the men I like would never be interested in me. First of all, they’re all heterosexual, they’re married, and then they’d consider me a guy who must grow up.

I tried in every way to get interested in my peers but they seem superficial to me, even gays for what I know, because I don’t know them in person. I fall in love with adult men, even sexually, and this is not normal, I think that maybe if an adult man falls in love with a young guy at the end it can be normal but the opposite just I can’t see it as a normal thing and instead that’s exactly what happens to me.

With my peers I can’t create a real relationship and I don’t even try. Last night for the first time, talking with you about the fact that I fall in love with men much older than me, it seemed to me that it was not abnormal, at least in a sense, that it was something of which I shouldn’t be ashamed, in the end that my sexuality has a dignity, a value even if it’s strange, at the base there are real feelings and not perversions. You don’t know how much it puts me in difficulty the fact that I consider myself a non-normal, that is, not even normal as gay.

I think a normal gay guy if he falls in love with another guy and makes his fantasies and masturbates thinking of that guy doesn’t feel guilty about it, but when I make sexual fantasies about adult men (in practice all my fantasies are about adult men) and I let myself go to masturbate thinking about these things I feel disgusted, it is as if it were the confirmation of the fact that I’m not normal and that I will never share my life with another person. These things dig you deeply. Above all I feel that while other gay guys can look for a guy, they can somehow think about their wishes and put them into practice, I cannot think about it, there will never be anything for me.

An adult man would just go with me searching for sex or he wouldn’t take me seriously, while I need a serious affection, that is, I need not someone who is sorry for me or who considers me a sexual game but someone who takes me seriously and I would be willing to do anything for a man like that. Talking about these things is not easy and in practice they are always kept inside me. Last night, talking with you, I felt respected, treated as I didn’t think it was possible. Yesterday, in fact, we started talking about things related to sexuality but then we ended up talking about something else, about my family, about the relationships I have with my parents and about how I would like them to be and I really broke the ice, we have been talking almost until dawn, time has passed and I haven’t noticed it. I need to talk, to throw out everything that I have kept inside for years.

You say that often from situations like mine one can come out and that over time also sometimes comes a sexual interest towards peers, or at least that could happen so, but on this I have my doubts and I think you told me it a little as a consolation, but I’m glad you told me because you know these things and you might even be right. Sometimes I think that I’m coming out of my mind and that it could also be or become a real neurosis, but for me sexuality is that.

Last night I felt at ease, thinking and seeing concretely that talking about yourself in a very direct way is possible and that it is also possible to be heard and understood and this transmits so much serenity.

And you told me then so many things that I felt that I wasn’t alone on earth, I didn’t feel as the only “abnormal”. It is wonderful to think that my life can really be lived! I don’t know if it will really be like that, but I feel less trapped, it’s as if the future could bring me positive things too. Thanks Project for setting up the project, you don’t know how such a thing is important. I hope to hear from you when I have a little more peace of mind, now I’m also very busy for the exams that are coming but also this period of overwork will pass. See you soon.

p. s. If you want to publish this email, do it, I don’t know what effect it will do to those who read it but what I wrote to you is all true.

_____________

If you like, you can join the discussion on this post on Gay Project Forum: http://gayprojectforum.altervista.org/T-gay-guys-and-sexual-intergenerational-fantasies

LOVE STORIES OF A GAY EIGHTEEN YEAR OLD

First of all, thanks for last night’s chat. You will understand that at 18, for one who has always tried not to see, finding the courage to write you was very difficult, but I’m glad I did. I expected a standard answer, let’s say a schematic thing, and I was struck by the kind of response, very direct. When I asked you to chat, I didn’t know what you would answer, but a minute later we were on Skype. Maybe the fears of a boy like me will make you smile, but I cannot talk to anyone seriously and for me to be able to talk about certain things means to understand that I must not be afraid. 
 
I have always lacked a family from my childhood, I had a family but only in name, my father thinks only of his things and my mother cares about me and my sister just like a duty always puffing and making us notice (especially at me) that for her we are only a ball and chain. My mother is convinced that she is an excellent mother and that she has sacrificed herself for us from morning to night and in a sense it is true, but she is not a mother, she is a super-nanny.
 
My father, when I try to tell him two words, makes me point out that he has no time, that he has other things to do and that what I wanted to tell him can be said later, he always postpones  my sister’s things and mine, because he has to think about work , always and only about work.
 
How can I tell my parents that I’m gay? I think that, very simply, they wouldn’t believe it, they are young, my father is 44 and mother 42, but they are straight and for them the world ends there. When there is a program on television that also speaks about gays, they don’t make homophobic comments, none of this, simply they change the channel, without even noticing, as if they had ended up by mistake on a channel that talks about how the cucumbers are cultivated in Arizona.
 
Besides, I would not bear at all the idea of being sent by a psychologist, and what for? I don’t have problems with my being gay, I feel great. One of my schoolmates is a gay, publicly declared, I don’t like him at all, he is a very good guy, but I really don’t like him physically, he is not effeminate at all but he isn’t certainly the guy of my dreams My classmates are not homophobic, my gay friend is not teased or bullied, the others simply consider him a bit like a Martian.
 
One day a friend of mine was talking to this gay guy and said to him: “I have nothing against gays, but I never understood how you, who are basically a boy like us, can do without girls and how can you run after guys “. This is the attitude that I see around me. I know that there is much worse, but even this feeling like a Martian is not at all pleasant. You can well understand that coming out at school and being treated like my gay friend doesn’t attract me at all.
 
As for love stories, my fantasies are enough for me. Two years ago I fell in love with a boy 18 years old, who was very handsome and fascinated me a lot because he was very calm, never aggressive and even though I was younger than him, the times that we talked, he took me as a guy his age. Then he graduated and left and I didn’t see him anymore, he was also a straight guy, I didn’t have the slightest doubt about that.
 
There is a guy in my class who likes me, that is, compared to the handsome boy of two years ago …  no! There’s no possible  comparison, but among others he is the one  I more look at, but then, when I speak with him, all my fantasies vanish, he is very full of himself, he tells me all the things he will do at university and later, but he seems to me a bit like an inflated balloon. Can you see him as a scientist, one who lacks satisfactory qualifications in mathematics? I don’t believe him will become a scientist! So, let’s say that as far as love stories I’m at zero.
 
There is a guy I like a lot in every sense but he is not in my class and I can exchange with him just a few words when there is the assembly, but I really like him a lot. He’s tall, thin, smiling, blond, with light eyes, just like the guys I like and then he’s smart, when he intervenes he amazes me for what he says, and he’s one who talks little, he also has a very sexy voice and beautiful hands. On this guy I tried to gather information, first of all to know if he has a girlfriend and doesn’t have one! Then to understand how he thinks about gays and I once heard one of his speeches in the assembly when he was talking about this and I noticed that he had a very particular way of expressing himself.
 
I’ll give you an example. Another guy, to say that gays mustn’t be marginalized, said that they should not be marginalized because “those are like us!” And therefore practically said to be a straight guy who accepts gays, while the guy that I like never did a distinction between “us” and “they”, he never said things that implied that he was straight, and this switched on a light bulb in my brain. . . he doesn’t have a girlfriend, talking about gays he doesn’t distinguish between us and them . . . well, objectively they are not very strong arguments but it is clear that the speech needs to be deepened and that it makes sense to try to understand something more.
 
I don’t think this guy has ever noticed me because I speak little, I don’t intervene in the assembly and I’m afraid to say nonsense, so I don’t show myself too much, however, with this guy  some things have happened that I liked a lot. During the assembly many guys were in the yard to smoke and we were there too, even if we don’t smoke, then the others came back to the assembly, I stayed out, I expected him to enter and instead he stayed out talking with me sitting on the steps, it seemed to me like a dream. I don’t want to overestimate the fact but he stayed there for me. We did not know what to say, neither he nor I, it was a moment of sweet embarrassment, but it ended immediately because a teacher passed and made us come back to the assembly.
 
Then there was another episode, there was a conference about the nuclear physics in the afternoon and there were very few people, there were no one of his classmates and he sat next to me in an almost empty room, I felt his warmth.
 
When it was over he offered me a coffee at the coffee machine and asked me what I had understood about everything they had said, and I told him that I was just thinking about something else and he replied: “Me too. . . ” and he gave a beautiful smile, I asked him about what had he thinking and he replied: “I think you know, but let’s change the subject, ok?” It was a very intense moment but then we talked about other things.
 
Is it possible that he too is interested in me? You don’t have an idea of how such a thing would make me happy. I don’t even care if he’s gay (of course it would be ideal!). It would be enough for me to have him only as a friend. Here he’s my dream of love: a handsome guy, intelligent and in love with me! Maybe it’s too much to ask, but I will not give him up because there’s something on its side too. Now I leave you and wish you a good week. 
Thanks for everything.
Mathew
____________
If you like, you can join the discussion on this post on Gay Project Forum: http://gayprojectforum.altervista.org/T-love-stories-of-a-gay-eighteen-year-old

GAYS AND FRUSTRATION

1 Frustration-inadequacy and frustration-rejection 
 
This chapter is dedicated to the experience of frustration, I immediately clarify that I intend to speak specifically about frustration, not anxiety or even more generally of discomfort, things that, however, they can be linked to the frustration.
 
The etymology itself of the term frustration, derived from the Latin adverb frustra = in vain, to no avail, clearly indicates that frustration is a form of discomfort resulting from the impossibility or the failure to achieve an expected or desired result. Frustration is one of the possible outcomes of the desired.
 
The reduction of the sense of frustration can derive only from the containment of the need or the desire within the sphere of the possible and even better of the probable, in other words only an ability to assess ex ante the greater or less feasibility of one’s desire allows to limit the its possible frustrating outcomes.
 
It’s here where the radical distinction of objectives comes into play in relation to whether or not their realization depends only on us. I clarify the discourse with two classic examples:
1) Completing of studies (individual objective).
2) Finding reciprocity in an emotional relationship (shared goal).
 
These are two radically different objectives. The completion of the studies depends only on the more or less conditioned action of the individual who can find objective obstacles but who is aware that the achievement of the objective (individual objective), beyond the external conditioning, depends in an essential way from his commitment and his capacities, in this case frustration is essentially perceived as a sense of inadequacy.
 
Finding reciprocity in an affective relationship is instead a fact substantially connected to an interpersonal relationship, this means that the achievement of the objective doesn’t depend only on the person who is focusing on that goal but also, and in an essential way, on another person who should share that goal (shared goal). In this case frustration is perceived as rejection.
 
It is not uncommon, however, that a frustration-rejection is also experienced as a frustration-inadequacy on the basis of identifying the causes of rejection in one’s own inadequacy: “He refused me because I am not up to the situation or because I have failed in something”, at the basis of these arguments however, there is a non-genuinely relational view of affective relationships that are interpreted as a kind of chess game in which, if the moves are not mistaken, you still get to win the game. In this way the other is seen as an object to be conquered with a strategy that, if adequate, necessarily leads to the result. This way of seeing things, even if in many cases it is completely incongruous, seems absolutely obvious to those who adopt it as their own interpretative model, to the point of obscuring the objectivity of the facts.
Let me explain with a concrete example.
 
2 Unrealizable goals
 
A gay guy who falls madly in love with an objectively heterosexual guy is induced to see his object of love as a repressed gay and not as a heterosexual and to think that with an appropriate strategy it will be possible to make sure that he takes note of his presumed repressed homosexuality. In such situations, the feeling of frustration-inadequacy can last for years and sometimes it becomes difficult to realize how things really are, even when the other gets married.
 
It is essential to realize that some things, however deeply desired, are objectively impossible. A heterosexual guy cannot fall in love with a gay guy, whatever strategy the gay guy uses, the thing will be anyway  impossible, so we should put aside the idea of being inadequate (not handsome enough, not solar enough, not reliable enough, too much neurotic etc. etc.) and realize that rejection is not a refusal of the person as such but a manifestation of the objective impossibility of sharing the objectives of the other. I pause for a moment to reflect on the feeling of being rejected.
 
The feeling of rejection that occurs when the other doesn’t share our goal is often experienced, especially by gay guys in love with straight guys, as a refusal not generically of the person but of the person as a gay, rather than as an inability to share the goal of the other, and this sometimes makes the process of accepting homosexuality more difficult.
 
Expecting a straight guy to fall in love with a gay guy makes no sense but expecting him to be a gay guy’s friend is realistic. A gay guy in these situations is often brought to the “all or nothing”, the thing is also understandable and a downsizing of the goal that makes it a shared goal is often difficult because even if the gay guy were to settle for a friendly relationship with the heterosexual guy he is in love with, he would still be frustrated in his “true, even if unrealistic, objective” that is to build a shared love story.
 
However, metabolizing the feeling of refusal of an emotional and sexual involvement by a straight guy, for a gay guy is still, all in all, a process of awareness of reality not too traumatic, because difficulties are basically objective and objectively insurmountable.
 
3 Frustrations in relationships between gays
 
The topic becomes much more delicate when the feeling of rejection intervenes in the relationship with another gay, here it is about a refusal on subjective ground that for the rejected person is much more difficult to accept and it is much more frequently accompanied by a feeling of inadequacy. In these situations, projective mechanisms typically come into play, for which one’s own feelings and expectations are projected onto the other and it is very difficult to understand that the other is objectively another, with a different individual story, with other desires and with a completely autonomous lived experience.
 
Generally, when a gay guy falls in love, the first and insistent question that arises concerns the sexual orientation of the other, if the other is not gay there is nothing to do, but if the other is gay it seems that the problem is solved and that the reciprocity will be achieved in any case, it is the typical “gay + gay = love” theorem behind which very strong projective mechanisms are hidden that make us see in the other, identified as a gay, an individual identical to ourselves.
 
We must never forget that gays don’t constitute a homogeneous category, there are gays of any political orientation, of any social level, of any religious creed or without any religious belief, there are gays who are excellent people and there are gays who aren’t at all, exactly as it is in the general population.
 
Gays are not a kind of Eden where everything is governed by good feelings, nor a kind of hell in which everything is dominated by individual interest and lower instincts. Gays are profoundly different from one another because they have behind them deeply different individual stories. So it is not at all obvious that a gay man can feel comfortable with another gay just because they are both gay and, I stress it, If two gays can quite easily become friends because they have something in common, it is certainly unlikely that two gay guys can feel a mutual sexual and affective feeling just because they are both gay, exactly as a hetero doesn’t fall in love with an ordinary woman just because she is a woman.
 
4 Frustration coming from projective mechanisms and socialization
 
Mechanisms that make us to project onto the other, as a gay, our feelings and our ways of reasoning can move us away from an objective assessment of the facts and can create completely unrealistic expectations. What can protect us from these projective mechanisms that often lead us to frustration? The answer is almost obvious, it is the socialization. The more a boy has a rich social and affective life, I speak above all of friendships, the more he has direct experience of the variability of the individuals with whom he interacts and the less he is led to the projective mechanisms.
 
I give a concrete example. A gay guy, who was writing to me his first embarrassed mail, told me: “I’ve never met another gay boy” for him the “gay boy” category was still unified and not having precise references he completed it seeing the “gay boy”  as another himself. That same guy, after a few nights spent chatting with other gay boys, said: “I realized that with many guys I can get along but with someone it’s like there’s a bigger distance, even if they are anyway very good guys, they have another way of reasoning, but there are some guys I feel really good with.” These speeches are the typical sign of a progressive socialization and therefore of the progressive decrease of the projective tendency.
 
5 Virtual relationships between gays
 
We now try to focus our attention on virtual couple relationships (chats, e-mails and forums) that can arise between gay guys. If we want to give the word love a connotation that is not excessively abstract, it must be assumed that love cannot be reduced to an intellectual affinity or a sharing of moral values but must necessarily presuppose a physical-physiological involvement, not necessarily experienced in couple, that deeply involves sexuality. At this point an observation is obligatory. When, in real life, a gay guy falls in love with another guy, falling in love doesn’t start from the intellectual level or from possible elective affinities but from physical attraction, that is from a whole set of factors that depend on the physicality of the other: his smile, his physical presence, his voice, his bodily attitudes, his tendency to a more or less seductive behavior.
 
This is so true that very often gay guys fall in love with straight guys far from them in every respect, but able to physically embody their ideal guy. If a guy appears to us physically attractive, we start asking ourselves questions about him and want to find a closeness also in terms of dialogue, in practice we are interested in that guy.
 
This mechanism of falling in love, which is typical of real life, cannot be put into practice through the internet where everything remains detached from the physical dimension. In these situations intervenes a projective mechanism that makes us imagine the guy with whom we are talking in chat according to our categories.
 
6 Texts not sexually connoted
 
Let me clarify with a very immediate example what a projective mechanism is and how much it can be conditioning. In appendix to this chapter can be read a story “not sexually connoted”, that is a story that does not present in the text any element that allows to clarify with certainty if one of the protagonists is a boy or a girl [In many languages but not in English, adjectives and past participles are accorded to the term to which they refer. In English third person’s pronouns are different for masculine a feminine, in any case, using the direct speech in second person and sometimes the impersonal speech “one can keep one’s own secrets” avoiding to refer to the sex of someone, it is possible this way to save ambiguity even in English] (in Italian it is possible to achieve the same result  avoiding pronouns of the third person, past participles or adjectives and using frequently the impersonal speech). A story not sexually connoted, therefore, is in itself neutral.
 
When that story is read by a straight guy, that guy interprets it according to his categories. But when that story is read by a gay guy reading is not so automatic and the gay guy often notices that the text is not sexually connoted, what usually escapes a heterosexual guy. On this basis projective tests for the determination of sexual orientation that have a real reliability can be built.
 
The projective reading is basically the reason for the fascination of literature or cinema because we project ourselves into the events and interpret them according to our experience.
 
7 Online chats and projective mechanisms
 
An exchange of e-mails, a chat conversation or a dialogue on a forum create a text, or better they construct a four-handed text. That text has the characteristics of literature, even more accentuated by the fact that it is built in four hands, it is the most suitable context for the projective readings but while in the projective reading of a book one doesn’t aim to build an interpersonal relationship and everything remains inside the reader’s mind, in the relationships via  internet the projective tendency must sooner or later take into account that on the other side there is another guy with his projections on the same conversation.
 
There is basically the risk of misunderstanding, aggravated by the fact that many chat conversations remain at extremely sublimated and symbolic levels and are therefore extremely open to projective interpretations. The role of important projective mechanisms in Internet contacts can be so decisive as to induce the two interlocutors even put aside the idea of a personal knowledge that could interrupt or destroy the projective mechanism which in itself is at least apparently gratifying.
 
8 The drift of the love language
 
I add that often in the dialogues in chat  between gay guys it is common to find the mechanism of the drift of the love language that is the progressive and automatic indulging in a language that more and more resembles a love language, this means that it is not at all rare that two guys who have never met in person, end up talking like lovers.
 
The emotional investment in these mechanisms is often very high and the projective dimension is such that the risk that the conversation is reduced to being just the starting point for the construction of stories that exist only at the projective level is very concrete. Basically we create an interlocutor to our measure, projectively completing the real elements (often scarce and of uncertain meaning) that emerge from the dialogue. This is so true that a gay guy comes to fall in love with a straight guy, interpreting every little element that does not appear 100% hetero as the sign of a possible homosexuality, and at the same time devaluing all those elements that also very clearly show that that guy isn’t at all a gay guy.
 
But I must stress that the mechanism also operates in relationships between gay guys, that is, between guys who know with certainty that the other is gay. The projective mechanism reaches the point of attributing to the other a presumed physicality, that is, it comes to embody him in an image that represents our ideal guy.
 
Sometimes and not rarely the projective image of the other is also loaded with sexual values and we try a sexual transport that is not at all superficial for a guy we’ve never seen. In practice we fall in love even sexually with a guy that at 90% has been created by our projective imagination that also attributes a physicality to him according to what we want.
 
The drift of the love language then does the rest and gives the clear impression that one is building a true love story. But in all this there is a fundamental mistake, in practice the natural mechanism that leads from physical attraction to emotional love is completely distorted. It must be remembered that to fall in love in the true sense of the word, a physical-physiological involvement is essential but must be addressed to a real person, not to an image created by our projective fantasy.
 
Some surrogates of the physical presence, such as photos or videos cannot in any way replace the physical presence that is and remains the necessary element of a true falling in love, I mean that without the physical presence and without an authentic form of involvement physical-physiological, love doesn’t exist at all.
 
I would like to warn youngsters who know each other in a chat against letting themselves go to the drift of love language, which only creates expectations that can then be completely destroyed even by a very brief meeting in which we realize that our projections don’t have anything in common with reality and that the discourse (but only the discourse) has been going on freely, far beyond reality.
 
It is generally very easy to let yourself go in a chat to big speeches, to say “I like you” and also “I love you” without a concrete foundation but it is very difficult to resize these statements later, when these speeches have created and consolidated expectations that a direct personal knowledge can destroy in a sudden and traumatic way.
 
At this point, if when the two guys meet in person the disillusionment is mutual, all in all, the problem is easily solved because the expectations of both parties vanish at the same time but if one of them is disillusioned and the other on the contrary feels strongly attracted also physically, the dissymetries become very strong and the situations become difficult to manage.
 
9 Friendships in chat
 
In chat or via e-mail, that is without direct personal knowledge, it is rather possible and, I would say, much less risky, to create friendships, which are much less conditioned by projective mechanisms than possible love stories. I notice that the spontaneous tendency of the guys is to look for a boyfriend, a lover, rather than one or more real friends in chat, but the internet tools are much better suited to the creation and maintenance of friendships than to the creation of love stories.
 
As a good rule of prudence I would say that it would be good to reserve speeches with strong emotional connotation only to people we actually met even outside the chat or the forum, that is people we met in person. And here an important reflection intervenes. Meeting in two in real life after having met in chat, gives that meeting a very strong emotional connotation and makes it appear as a step towards the construction of an important and mutual story. This is why it is generally better to build relationships that start from friendship, from seeing each other in a group, that is, from relationships that don’t create too many expectations that could turn into disillusionment.
 
Friendship is always the first step, if the physical presence is engaging and encouraging then it may make sense to go a step further, otherwise friendship remains and is not compromised by the fact that no story with greater involvement derives from it because undeclared expectations have not been fed.
 
I would like to stress that the network (used with the utmost caution, for heaven’s sake!) offers possibilities but can also lead to very heavy disillusionments. If you love someone, even just as a friend, you must avoid deluding him and take him to cold showers that leave a deep sense of bitterness. So it is good to always maintain an attitude of responsibility and think first about the possible consequences of what you are going to do or to say. Closed this parenthesis on online meetings, we return to the topic of frustration.
 
10 The value of experience
 
The other key element, beyond socialization, to prevent the sense of frustration is experience. The first refusal can be really traumatic, the following are certainly less, in essence our psyche considers the first traumas of rejection as a kind of vaccination that attenuates the virulence of the following ones. The rejection trauma often leads to behaviors that appear to be attempts to overcome rejection, as insistent requests for confirmation from the other, which obviously only amplify the feeling of rejection. All this, which appears as an inadequate and dysfunctional behavior, on the contrary, has a precise meaning and serves to define the situation (to put a boundary or a limit), that is, serves to its definitive overcoming, to its archiving.
 
It should be emphasized that those who after a first refusal insist on asking for further confirmation are judged by this to be inadequate, but are actually looking for a fracture mechanism that creates the conditions for going further. In this sense, unclear, implicit, said and denied refusals, do nothing but avoid this moment of fracture, preventing in fact the definition of the situation that remains perpetually unresolved.
 
Beyond the subjective perception, the real situations of discomfort are realized where a state of constant uncertainty persists and time passes without the guys realizing the presence or absence of a true symmetrical dimension in an affective relationship.
 
11 Affective frustrations and other frustrations
 
I would like to add that frustrations in the emotional field are often complicated by the presence of other frustrations, this time strictly individual, connected to the failure to achieve objectives related to the research and stabilization of work or success in studies, especially when failures are perceived as deriving from a lack of individual commitment in solving a problem which would really be solvable.
 
In general, frustrations due to substantial disengagement at the individual level are masked by frustrations in emotional or couple relationships that are magnified to make them appear as the core of the state of discomfort, in this case failures in emotional life are motivated by a primary, original inability, that is impossible to overcome and that is almost incumbent as an ineluctable destiny, it is the moment of “I am so, there something wrong in me, I cannot do anything!”
 
The individual frustrations, not referred to their causes but seen as an expression of something uncontrollable, trigger ideas with vaguely depressive contents that risk pervading life on various levels and setting in motion vicious circles from which it is difficult to get out.
 
Experience teaches that problems must be faced and resolved one at a time. The most meaningful thing is to avoid giving your brain a way of always spinning on the usual contents, instead choosing short-term concrete objectives to be implemented by focusing seriously on them. The antidote to frustration and the way to break a series of frustrations that risk triggering a depressive mechanism is to achieve the first successes, to lay the foundations for looking at the concrete and the goals that are really achievable shortly with an effort of individual commitment, how to take an exam, send a resume to find a job, without letting time flow when there are problems to be tackled immediately.
 
In this perspective, being gay can also lead to emotional frustrations that are difficult to accept, but rather than insist in the search for what is wrong in oneself, it makes sense to focus on individual and concrete goals, the achievement of which can lead to a clear increase in self-esteem and therefore also in the ability to face the frustrations in the couple life with greater concreteness and serenity.
 
12 Coexisting with frustrations
 
Frustrations are an indispensable element in the life of everybody and therefore it is necessary to learn to live with it, always remembering that as we have been rejected we also, more or less consciously, rejected other people or other forms of involvement, all this has nothing pathological but is part of the normal administration of emotional life.
 
13 Aggressive frustration and passive frustration
 
Speaking via msn with several gay guys, I often find myself faced with manifestations of frustration which, although quite differentiated, certainly have very similar motivations behind them. The reactions are at various intermediate levels between those of aggressive frustration and those of total passivity. I try to give an idea of the most recurrent content:
 
AGGRESSIVE FRUSTRATION – “The world sucks”, “I would break everything”, “People are a shit”, “To someone like that I would break his face”, “They are deficient and immature”, “I hate them all”, “I cannot stand them”, “I feel like I’m throwing away my time”, “Another day ended and I haven’t realized anything! I cannot stand anymore throwing away my time!”
 
PASSIVE FRUSTRATION – “The others can have fun not me “, “What am I living for?”, “So it’s useless!”, “I’ll never be happy”, “I don’t care about studying, so I will never succeed, my life is just a set of failures”.
 
At the base of these forms of frustration there may be differently articulated motivations but all attributable to the real or presumed impossibility of living a satisfactory affective life and the belief that “others” (hetero but also gay), instead, can fully experience their emotional life.
 
14 Different types of gay frustrations
 
The frustrations are found in different forms in different groups of people:
 
– Older boys, over 35 years old, who start feeling like they have “lost the train” because they arrived too late at the acceptance of themselves or at the idea that an emotional realization is possible even for a gay guy.
 
– Boys with specific sexual orientation towards people much older than themselves who realize the difficulty of achieving what they would like and become aware of the social condemnation (even among gays) of their preferences. These guys feel marginalized even among gays.
 
– Boys with specific minority sexual orientation, that is, boys who fall in love very rarely and with guys with whom it is difficult to build a relationship. These guys don’t usually fall in love with guys with whom fall in love the majority of gay guys and have the impression that the future, for them, can consist exclusively or in the acceptance of compromise solutions or in emotional loneliness.
 
– Guys who consider themselves unsuitable to constitute a center of emotional and sexual interest for another guy both for physical and psychological reasons.
 
15 Frustration before and after the arrival of the Internet
 
I must add a reflection that often came to my mind, while talking with guys and comparing their reactions with those that my peers had when they were twenty. Forty years ago, in objective terms, the reasons for the frustration of a gay guy could be even more serious because the isolation was total and yet, for what I could see, talking to people of my generation, the sense of frustration was less deep and the tendency to seek substitute satisfactions in the study, in the career and in a social dimension, independent of the sexual orientation, was much stronger. In essence there was at the time the clear awareness of the impossibility of building a life according to one’s own principles. Today, especially thanks to the internet, the possibilities of contact between gay guys have increased enormously, but expectations have increased proportionally, and the sense of frustration, far from being sublimated in productive activities, is very strong.
 
One of the risks associated with a reality such as Project Gay consists precisely in creating a sounding board that amplifies the sense of frustration and radicalizes it. Not only that, but the direct contact with other gay guys, which at the beginning looks extremely promising, then slowly dismantles the assumption that two gay guys necessarily have a common world and brings out the differences that are often very large. The discussion between gays is not easy because it highlights that even among gays there are mechanisms of marginalization and competitiveness. All this risks radicalizing frustration: “I feel marginalized even among other gays!”
 
16 The risks of frustration
 
But let’s come to the specific risks of the sense of frustration, first of all to the depressive forms that sometimes accompany adolescence and youth of gay boys, depressive forms complicated by the fact that talking with parents is practically impossible and boys are forced to an endless acting.
 
Depression can come to manifest itself in crying, in the sense of abandonment and uselessness. It sometimes happens that some ideas related to depression become persistently recurrent and even dominant. It is the case of the guys who construct a rational discourse in support of their depressive idea, giving it an appearance of objectivity. This is the typical case of the so-called extrapolations, which are very frequent: “If I have not fallen in love in twenty years it will never happen to me!”, “Everything I have done has always gone wrong and it will always be like that!” In these discourses we start from premises that can also be objective but we reach improper conclusions characterized by “always” or “never”, that is, by radically negative conclusions.
 
I learned from experience that talking with guys who live depressive phases is not easy and that the first thing that needs to be kept in mind is that it is not enough to have a positive chatter to get out of the depressed mood. If on the one hand the depression should not be fed, for the other must be respected and not trivialized. Seen from the outside it looks like something almost trivial, surmountable with a little encouragement, but seen from the inside it causes deep suffering.
 
Respect towards a depressed guy must be shown by putting aside all aggressiveness towards him and every preaching attitude, all this is not easy because, for those who are not depressed, it is very difficult to realize the mechanisms of depression. The insistence is experienced by a depressed guy as a form of aggression. What instead really has a value is a presence that does not fade, which is constant but not harassing. But the subject is very complex and should be investigated.
 
The second typical risk of the frustration consists in trying to “solve the problem” through the ways that seem the easiest or perhaps the only ones that can be followed, namely the erotic chats and the meeting sites. Gay Project’s online interviews show that the percentage of guys who attend erotic chats and dating sites more or less habitually is not negligible. However, it is quite probable that a good percentage of those guys don’t really enter chats or dating sites to find easy sex, in many cases those guys are driven by the sense of frustration to look inside those sites for what they cannot find elsewhere, i.e. a true emotional life. From what I see on a daily basis, many youngsters come out profoundly disappointed by the experience of dating sites and erotic chats and this only adds to the sense of frustration.
 
Apart from the risk of HIV, the alternative between visiting dating sites and sadden in a depressive state may appear to be the only one possible, even if it really it is not. What often creates conditioning is the rush to reach the solution. Among other things, the escape from the depressive loneliness can be so radically conditioning to take the boys to make them underestimate the real risks of the chats and dating sites in terms of sexually transmitted diseases and to let them consider sexual intercourses as indicative of a sure affective substrate also where it is unrealistic to expect anything like this.
 
There are guys who try to start couple relationships with guys met in chat or on the dating sites, completely expending themselves in this attempt and bringing back at the end, after many adventures, deep frustrations. The idea that the realization of sexual contacts on the basis of physical pleasure alone doesn’t realize affective well-being is difficult to accept, especially on the part of a guy fleeing from depression.
 
It would be essential to create true emotional relationships, of simple friendship, which could, if it is true friendship, allow an affective life less centered on the need for a couple’s life. The idea that the life of a person identifies with his life as a couple partner and only with it, in addition to being completely unrealistic, only amplifies the expectations, before, and the sense of frustration, after, since affective life can be built only in two and not as an answer to the demanding of only one, however profound it could be.
 
Frustration also involves a further type of risk and it is the risk connected to neglecting or abandoning all other activities that contribute to building the ordinary relationship life of a gay guy, I speak of study, work, the relationship with the family of origin and with the old friends.
 
When the idea of realizing a couple life becomes dominant, everything else gradually loses weight and becomes an object of contempt or explicit disinterest.
 
Neglecting the studies because there are “more important problems” to be solved not only doesn’t solve those problems but adds others and distances the economic autonomy over time which may instead be one of the most useful elements to reduce the sense of frustration that accompanies youth of so many gay guys.
 
Unfortunately, the idea that the life of an individual is not played on the only element “life of a couple” is difficult to accept for a guy who is accustomed and pushed to consider couple life as totalizing.
___________
If you like, you can join the discussion on this post on Gay Project Forum: http://gayprojectforum.altervista.org/T-gays-and-frustration

GAY GUYS WHO UNDERSTAND AND REASON WITHOUT PANIC

Panic and rationality

When a boy, who comes to the awareness of being gay, lives in homophobic environments or has been accustomed to seeing homosexuality as a disease, as a perversion or as a sin , that boy will be led to consider homosexuality as a catastrophe looming over him, able to crush him and negatively affect his whole life. In such situations it is not uncommon for the discomfort to be so deep as to cause him to think even of suicide as the only way out.

For a boy who recognizes himself as gay and lives in a homophobic environment, it is essential to keep in mind that the assessments must be given in cold blood, without being panicked and based on a realistic knowledge of what could derive from the decision. One can also be terrified by the idea of being attacked by the ghosts but objectively the ghosts don’t exist.

Objective data

First of all, a gay boy must try to know the reality of the gay world, I mean the real gay world and not that of jokes or urban legends, because it is from the confusion between urban legends and objective reality that comes most of the fears about homosexuality. There is therefore a need to always keep in mind some basic elements about homosexuality on which I will now focus.

First of all we try to understand how many homosexuals are limiting ourselves to Italy. Given that the homosexuals publicly declared are an estimated fraction of about 4% of the total, making a data collection that also involves the large mass of not openly gay guys, it’s virtually impossible. Completely anonymous tests have been made (and therefore potentially truthful, on even large samples of the population) on the basis of two distinct criteria, one consists in considering homosexuals those who have or have had homosexual relationships and the other consists in considering homosexual those who consider themselves to be such, regardless of whether they have or have had a gay couple sexuality.

The two surveys, conducted with the two different criteria, give results according to which those who feel homosexual, between 25 and 26 years, are about twice those who have or have had a homosexual relationship. According to Gay Project statistics, at the average age of 25.81, 45.02% of those who consider themselves gay have never had sexual relations either hetero or gay. From the same survey we come to know that in the same sample masturbation takes place with gay fantasies in over 99% of cases. This fact confirms that the fantasies that accompany masturbation are the fundamental index of sexual orientation.

The most reliable estimates of the percentage of those who consider themselves gay are around 8% of the general population. It is objectively a minority but certainly not a small minority. The findings give similar results both between men and women. Homosexuality is therefore a reality that involves men and women more or less in the same percentage.

Saying that homosexuals are about 8% of the general population is not immediately significant, so it is worthwhile to present the same data through examples immediately understandable: in a class of 25 students, on average, there are two homosexual guys, in one school with a thousand students there are, on average, 80 homosexual students, in Italy (about 61 million inhabitants) there are about 4,800,000 homosexuals, counting both men and women, roughly the population of the whole Veneto, this number also includes children who statistically will recognize themselves as homosexuals during their lifetime. It is understood that, being however a minority, gays are still very many.

Compared with the overall percentage estimated at about 4% of publicly declared gays on the total of the entire gay population, it is observed that the sample examined by Gay Project, of average age 25.81 years, has a percentage of publicly declared gays equal to 13.74 %. Although the sample is not statistically significant, the indicated value is certainly higher than that of the general gay population, the fact remains that the younger generations have a greater propensity to declare themselves publicly. In all age groups, the percentage of gays that are not publicly declared remains, however, very higher than that of the declared ones. According to common experience, even if there are, on average, 80 gay boys out of a thousand students, it is practically impossible to detect even just one because homophobia exists and avoiding a coming out in public is considered as the only possible defense.

Summarizing what has been said up to now we can conclude that gays, even if not recognizable, because environmental homophobia pushes them not to declare themselves, are everywhere around us and these guys, even if they are not publicly declared, are still looking for a dialogue and contact with other gay boys, because the first problem of gay boys is to feel alone.

Gays and myth of the charming prince

Before proceeding, it is good to dwell a bit on another kind of preconceptions, or rather, of fables related to the realization of the self. Gay boys, like all boys, grow up with myths induced by the cultural climate around them, one of these is the myth of the charming prince. It is a myth that was created for the girls, to induce them not to lose hope but to hope for the arrival, sooner or later, of the classic charming prince capable of transforming Cinderella into a queen. In reality this myth pushes us not to act, waiting for someone to radically change our condition. A myth of this kind, with the necessary differences, can be easily transposed into a gay key, and among gays causes similar damages to those it causes in the hetero field, prompting guys to dreaming, instead of reasoning, and to expecting miraculous solutions coming from outside for their problems and their difficulties, instead of getting seriously busy engaging in the first person.

Autonomy and economic independence

For a gay boy, rather than for a straight boy, it is essential to gain his own autonomy because, in general, a gay boy cannot rely too much on the support that could come from his family or from the social context. Autonomy is not a myth analogous to that of the charming prince, but it is a concrete and essential reality. True autonomy exists only when there is a real economic independence, which is certainly not easy to achieve. Autonomy intended as independence and therefore as substantial freedom of choice, must be the basic objective of a gay boy.

Those who cannot take too much account of the help of others can react either with passivity and fatalism, letting themselves go to accept any imposition and any adaptation, or instead can look ahead with constructive attitude, planning their future step by step and orienting it before everything to the conquest of a full personal autonomy, that is, essentially, of the economic autonomy. There are only two concrete tools for achieving true autonomy: study and work.

Studying, for a gay boy, has at least two functions, the first is also common to straight boys and consists of broadening their general culture and dominating the ordinary tools of critical analysis and communication and the other, specifically gay, consists in the discovery of the weight of homosexuality in culture, from Plato to Garcia Lorca, from Michelangelo to Pasolini, from Marsilio Ficino to Luchino Visconti. To realize the weight and the sense that the homosexual culture has had and has in history, despite the repressions and the discriminations, means to find again one’s own roots and to recognize himself in a tradition of high culture and great dignity.

Obviously the study also has an instrumental function and allows access to more qualified and paid jobs that can guarantee greater independence. It should never be forgotten that the search for couple life can in no case replace the construction of the self through substantial independence, that is, through economic independence. A guy has to stay in a couple because he feels at ease with his partner. When living in couple is instrumental to other aims, the couple relationship is based on very fragile bases. We are comfortable in a couple relationship when we are there by choose and not by necessity.

Equilibrium between affectivity and practical life

It often happens that gay boys come to realize through study and then through their professional activity, all this is highly positive but in some cases hides the a priori renunciation of affective life. Being gay and trying to achieve first of all one’s own independence does not mean having to give up emotional life, but that emotional life cannot and must not be identified with the totality of life, because well-being, which also has a very strong emotional component, it can in fact be impossible when its minimum requirements are lacking, which in an adult life are inevitably of an economic nature. Just as it makes no sense to focus exclusively on the pursuit of economic autonomy by putting affectivity aside, so it makes no sense to be overwhelmed by affectivity neglecting the material assumptions of individual well-being.

That a young boy can be overwhelmed by affectivity and sexuality is still understandable, even if often inappropriate, but an adult must keep his feet on the ground and must give the study and work an adequate space to allow the effective achievement and possibly in normal times, if not shortened, of the independence. A form of discouragement often arises here, the study appears very difficult, very long, you don’t feel adequately prepared and the temptation to throw in the towel makes its way easily. It is at this point that the will must take over. The results derive essentially from work and personal commitment and, from whatever level you start, it is always possible to go ahead and improve your condition. It’s not the so-called genes who go on, but the people who want to commit themselves and who work hard to overcome difficulties.

Discouragement and commitment

Too often we are led to underestimate ourselves to avoid a serious commitment and in this way we tend to confuse the “I cannot” with the “I don’t want”. Here is the farmer’s metaphor: if in a field there is a farmer who works and in the near field there is one that doesn’t do anything, it is true that the one who works may also lose the harvest due to adverse weather conditions, but the fact remains that almost always the working farmer will have his crop for the winter and the other will be reduced to starvation.

Building, in any case, takes time and effort, which is why shorthand propagandists and sellers of easy solutions are almost always smoke vendors who point to roads that lead nowhere. What is served on a silver plate often hides pitfalls. I refer to dating sites and erotic chats. If it is true that it is possible to find friends and even a partner in these sites, it remains nevertheless the fact that the purpose of these sites is different and that most people don’t visit them to find friendship or love but to look for disengaged sex.

Gay loneliness and gay friendships

The basic problem of a gay boy, the problem of loneliness, has two distinct solutions: the first is to find a boy, the second is to find gay friends. It must be stressed immediately that none of these two things, alone, can lead to individual well-being. While it seems obvious that having gay friends without having a boyfriend should be considered unsatisfactory, it doesn’t seem that having a boyfriend without having gay friends is in itself preclusive of individual well-being, because it is assumed that the boyfriend is simultaneously the lover, the beloved, the friend, the confidant, etc. etc..

Experience shows that, paradoxically, gay friendships contribute to individual well-being even more than having a boyfriend because friendships stabilize the emotional live while love affairs, especially at the beginning, destabilize or can destabilize it very strongly. The emotional dimension must necessarily find support on the two tracks of the bond of couple and friendship and while without a bond of couple you can certainly be well for long periods (and at the limit even for life), without friends you are definitely alone.

Friendship exorcises loneliness and at the same time takes away the fear of homosexuality because it allows a personal and not superficial knowledge of other gay boys, stimulates the comparison and shows us how our friends are setting up or have set up the problems that we are going to face. In friendship, analogously to what happens in love, the difference between the true friend and the one who is not is not evidenced by the apparent initial consistency of the relationship but by its articulation over time and by its ability to resist the moments of crisis and to the misunderstandings that inevitably occur in any relationship.

Gay and possible happiness

When one considers the fact of being gay as a calamity, one doesn’t realize a basic truth whose denial is the basis of every form of fear of being gay, that is, one doesn’t realize that for a gay man today it is really possible to be happy, it is possible to have serious gay friends and it is not difficult either; it is a little more difficult to find a partner with whom to build a relationship that will last, but this is also difficult for hetero people for whom it is not at all obvious that marriage represents the incarnation of the myth of the ideal family.

Even gays must guard against the false myths in the name of which people and real situations are often devalued. Love and friendship are not fables but exercises of reality, that is true gyms in which day after day one learns to love through trials and errors. To truly love means to love a real person and not a theoretical model, but truly love is possible and it is a reality that changes life from within because it involves the profound experience of being in two.

Correcting one’s mistakes

I will dedicate the last part of this chapter to a fundamental question that has often involved gay boys over the years, I intend to refer to the ability to recognize and correct one’s mistakes. Gays, like all the people of this world, are subject to various kinds of temptations. There are young people who can make affective choices subordinate to issues of social role, opportunism or economic utility, others can undermine established relationships for years for an overnight adventure, others may end up adapting to social demands to the point of sacrificing their own sexuality. All these behaviors must be understood “in situation”, that is, from the specific point of view of those who put them into practice and in relation to all previous experience. These are often wrong choices, induced in large part by external factors, which can also cause very heavy consequences.

Let’s start from a premise: one can be wrong, the weaknesses are many. The attraction for money, for the social role or for sex exists and is strong. It should be emphasized that the quality of a person is not found in his never failing, what would not be human, but in the ability to correct their mistakes and make choices. Often, however, to the objectively and subjectively wrong choices, for which one feels also a feeling of moral discomfort, is added the idea that now one cannot go back and that a single failure is enough to undermine a person in a definitive way.

Let us ask ourselves: why is a “word” program better than the classic pen and paper to write a letter? The answer is only one: because using the computer one can easily correct errors and improve the text progressively. Programmers are well aware that mistakes are inevitably made when writing a program of some complexity, and the search and correction of these errors is a fundamental phase of the work that leads to the creation and optimization of a program. This also happens in individual life: mistakes are inevitably made, but it is essential that when, to remain in the computer metaphor, the program doesn’t run, one avoids the temptation to reset everything and destroy what has been built up to that point instead of commit oneself to correct mistakes and adjust the shot.

Reversible habits and choices

Some points must always be kept in mind: first of all the choices, all the choices, even the wrong ones, are reversible and are reversible at any time; secondly: the reversibility of choices is much easier if the correction is rapid because, with the passage of time habits are consolidated and one gets used to the very comfortable idea of irreversibility and therefore of moral irresponsibility. I stop on a metaphor: one doesn’t become obese for having eaten one more pastry, but when the habit of transgression of the rules of the diet is rooted, it becomes particularly difficult to return to the observance of the correct eating rules.

The metaphor also helps from another point of view: eating one more cake can be pleasant and the temptation is great but continuing without rules to eat pastries not only doesn’t lead to individual satisfaction but leads to being sick and to be convinced of being naturally intended to obesity, which in the vast majority of cases is not true. The choices, all the choices, must be made with an eye to the future, trying to foresee responsibly the long-term consequences of what is being done. This discourse is primarily valid for the prevention of sexually transmitted diseases, but it also applies to couple fidelity and to the tendency to follow social rules at the expense of one’s deep affectivity.

Usefulness of moral discomfort

The situation of moral hardship felt by the one who makes wrong choices shouldn’t be buried and judged a residual form of useless moralism, but must be seen as an alarm bell and as a signal to reflect on to go back before making even bigger mistakes.

The moral discomfort that one feels in front of wrong choices, which in any case are made in life, is precisely the basis of the self-regulating mechanism that allows us to correct errors. Expressions such as: “I cannot do anything about it”, “it’s my nature”, “it’s stronger than me” are the typical expressions that accompany acquiescence to moral surrender, that is, abdication to individual ability to choose. A classic example is related to disengagement in the study that is framed in the light of an inevitability “by nature”, but the same can be said for the tendency to transgression in the couple life or for the passive adaptation to social rules that are not shared.

The word “destiny” should be deleted from the dictionary because it is a convenient excuse for any form of disengagement and of perseverance in situations that are considered wrong. The moral lies in not abdicating one’s ability to make choices and therefore in the ability to go back and change one’s condition through individual commitment.

I would like to point out that, among gays, it is not uncommon to find forms of moral relaxation which, I emphasize, don’t consist of specific wrong behaviors in themselves, but precisely in abdication to one’s capacity for choice and commitment in the name of the presumed unavoidability of a destiny or of a “wrong” individual nature. Morality lies in the ability to react and not to lose one’s ability to choose. Below are two emails illustrating the situation, I have been authorized to publish them from those who sent them to me.

1/4/2012 Dear Project,
I am 27 years old, [- omissis-] Let’s come to the reason that pushed me to write you: I spent a year with a girl because I couldn’t stand the subtle pressure of my parents and also because if I had not done so, my friends sooner or later would have come to understand how things really were.

She is a very good girl and with her I don’t feel too much uncomfortable, at the limit, I think there is also some sexual involvement, but when I see some guys and I imagine how it would be to stay with them, my blood starts to boil, it’s absolutely another dimension, but with those guys I will never be able to stay and then I might as well try to stay with this girl, who is even in love with me.

I’m glad when she looks for me and I’m glad to see her, but it’s not really what I want and I’m sure of that. In practice, when I find myself embracing her, I come to think of how beautiful it would be if in his place there was one of those guys who really attract me. I have the distinct feeling of cheating this girl, the courage to speak clearly with her I don’t have it because I fear that I would end up to disgrace myself in front of the whole country, maybe it would not happen, but just thinking such a thing it gives me the push to keep going on like this but I don’t hide that sometimes I feel uncomfortable because I know I’m just using her.

When we meet, which happens in practice every day, I see her happy to see me and I feel uncomfortable, but what can I do? In practice, I have no chance of choice and so I must go on like that. In the end I think it could also work, or at least I hope so. And then I cannot make radical decisions, it’s just against my nature, I don’t have the strength to make definitive choices, and that’s why I let others do it for me. I cannot do anything, it is stronger than me. I was not born a lion, I’m a sheep and I must follow the flock, I would never be able to go alone against everything and everyone.

11/4/2012 Dear Project,
(- omissis -) I managed to take the first step and I had thought I would never have succeeded. It was very difficult but I managed to talk to my now ex-girlfriend. The reaction has been initially freezing, she did not expect it at all, basically she hadn’t understood anything, and there I felt really bad, then she called me in the early afternoon and asked me to meet because she wanted to give me back the gifts I had made her. I didn’t like it, but I couldn’t do anything about, so I put together the presents she had given me and we met in the afternoon, but she told me that she wanted to keep the ring engraved on the inside with my name. So I gave a spontaneous smile and she started crying, she told me that she loved me but she had understood that my life would have been different and that she would not forget me. We shook hands for a few seconds.

I tried to explain things from my point of view but she said that there was no need and we said goodbye with a hug that I didn’t expect. Actually, I think that I will not forget at all this girl. The next day I expected her to call me but she didn’t and I was uncomfortable, the following Saturday we met with friends and it was a nice thing, with me she was sincere and affectionately, with friends she was as if nothing had changed, except for a somewhat more detached attitude, but probably only the two of us noticed it.

In short, I feel much better, more free and above all the fact that she has understood how things were, makes me feel good. The relationship that somehow exists still now is authentic and I think it will not be lost. This was probably the hardest step but there are still many left. I will look for work away from here. I know it’s not easy to find it but I have to commit myself to the maximum. If I’ll remain here I’ll never find the chance to be myself. I began to send curricula throughout Italy and even abroad, now I hope that some concrete proposal will come to me but, if it happens, the separation from my family and my friends would certainly be very hard. I want to try to take back my destiny, to make my choices and to build my life as I think I would like it. We hope well, Project! [- omissis -].

___________

If you like, you can join the discussion on this post on Gay Project Forum: http://gayprojectforum.altervista.org/T-gay-guys-who-understand-and-reason-without-panic