when i was about 12 or 13 years old and started to go through puberty, i got curious about sex like every teenage boy does. so i decided to "research" sex and learn about it. but when i got online the first images that popped up were pictures of gay porn. it disgusted me to see it, but because it was my first exposure to anything to do with sex, it sucked me in. all throughout my teen years i kept looking up the gay porn as a way to relieve stress. and being a preacher's kid builds up a lot of stress. but the fact that i was looking up gay porn was another stress because i had to hide it from everyone, so started the vicious circle. as i went through middle and high school, i struggled with my sexual identity because of the gay porn. i didn't consider myself gay, but i kept thinking of the images i had seen on the internet and was confused by the appeal that they had on me.i never dated as a teenager, partly because i didn't want to have a realtionship that wouldn't last past high school but also partially because of my sexual ambivalence. i started getting sloppy with hiding it, so my parents found the porn on our computer about half-way through my first semester of senior year. my dad talked with me about it but it felt more like an investigation than it did an "i'm worried for you" conversation. because the porn was of a homosexual nature, they sent me too a christian counselor to talk about it. that went nowhere. he never took me seriously when i said i wasn't where i should be spiritually. he just said "you're very mature for your age, and seem to be right where you should be spiritually." he also said that i wasn't addicted to porn because it wasn't a "gotta have it" kind of thing, just a stress reliever. whatever. stress-reliever or not, it's an addiction, if only a minimal one. i still have trouble with it. every day. but i know now that i'm definitley not gay, it's just the images that i'm addicted to. i'm not naive enough to think that it'll just go away, it's gonna be a daily struggle. especially since life=stress. just this summer i lost my grandma to liver disease, which caused me to look up the porn all over again to forget about all of the grief after having been clean for months. but i'm slowly getting help. i've talked to a friend about all of this, absolutely everything, and that has really helped me focus on getting and staying clean. non-transperency in the church needs to be obliterated. if i knew that i could trust the men in my church not to judge me, but to help me, my problem with porn and homosexuality could have been cut-off from the very beginning. but my fear of being rejected by the church and possibly losing my dad his job has made me bottle it all up for the last seven years. freedombeginshere.org has truly helped me realize that the only way to 'recover' is to talk about it. so speak up!
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