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21 Jul 2005

Don't want to be gay.
I am a 34 year old male with gay lots of gay tendencies. I saw a shrienk and she says I am bi, but I get more turned on by men than woman. I masturbate with pictures of naked men, but never of naked woman. I hate myself for this and would like to know why i am like this and if there is a possibility to get it out of me.
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Gay, lesbian and bisexual expert
Gay, lesbian and bisexual expert

01 Jan 0001

Hi Dowannabe

You describe yourself as a guy with many gay tendencies, including being sexually attracted to men and masturbating to gay erotica. I'm wondering what 'bi' tendencies you have?

Is it possible that you're actually gay, but find this notion so uncomfortable that you feel safer identifying as bisexual?

Sadly, some gay people are very uncomfortable with their sexual orientation. Invariably this is due to our being raised and socialised in a heterosexist world that teaches us - from a very young age - that being gay is 'bad', and shameful. For example, as children, our nursery-rhymes are straight; we're taught history from a heterosexual perspective; the media is heterosexist. We're also taught that we must conform to society's heterosexist expectations - that we must be straight. We're also exposed to homophobia and prejudice against gay people - we hear it from our parents and our friends, we see gay people being teased at school, we are taught that gay people are inferior.

Sadly, many gay people continue to think of themselves as inferior, and feel ashamed of their being gay. The problem isn't that a person is gay - the problem lies with society, and social attitudes, that prejudice gay people.

I often compare this to the children's story of "The Ugly Duckling", in which an individual felt extremely uncomfortable because he couldn't fit into the world of ducks, and couldn't meet the expectations of that world, until he realised he was a swan. At that point he was able to accept himself, realising that it wasn't possible for him to conform to "duck" expectations.

From what you've written I doubt you're straight. You're not a duck. You may be gay, you may be bi. Accept yourself, so that you can stop feeling so guilty. Start enjoying being a swan.

It is very possible that you may need counselling to help you deal with this. Call the Gay & Lesbian Helpline on (021) 4 222 500 any day between 1pm and 9 pm - chat to a counsellor, or ask them to refer you to a gay psychologist or social worker in your area.
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