Our expert says:
Gay, lesbian and bisexual expert
Hello Thomas, welcome to our forum and thanks for writing such a detailed message.
You have much anxiety around your sexuality and you appear deeply troubled by the possibility that you could be gay. I can only imagine how distressing this must be for you.
Note that you cannot simply turn gay overnight - we're not speaking about a condition, or an illness, that can suddenly strike you. Being gay implies a complex process, over time, of becoming aware of your attraction (sexually and romantically) to other men. It is not an illness and is only 'abnormal' in that it occurs less frequently in the general population than heterosexuality. By this definition of 'abnormal', tall, short, left-handed, gifted and blond-haired people are also abnormal in that they are not 'average'.
There is nothing at all to fear about being gay. However, reading through your message I doubt that you have a simple fear of being gay. It is possible - possible - that you may have an obsessive-compulsive condition, in which anxiety plays a significant role. The condition has two aspects, 'obsession' and 'compulsion'
An 'obsession' is a thought - which can include very uncomfortable, distressing and intrusive thoughts that are often irrational, which you cannot stop and which can be repetitive in nature. A 'compulsion' is a behaviour - which can be repetitive and could extend into rituals (having to do things in a certain way, or a particular sequence, often repeatedly until you're satisfied that they're done correctly). Some people with this condition are excessively preoccupied with cleanliness and hygiene, some people are exceptionally neat and orderly and feel stressed when their environment isn't perfectly ordered, and some people are inclined to keep endless lists of everything. Sometimes to the point of keeping lists of their lists. The condition can be very debilitating, and can really complicate your life.
Some people with this condition can fixate on sex, with obsessive thought patterns and compulsive sexual behaviour. Masturbating can be compulsive - but NOT masturbating can also be compulsive, depending on what your thought content is at that time.
I'm not trying to pathologise you or tell you that there's something seriously wrong - but if I am correct in my reading of your message I strongly urge you to seek the professional help of a counsellor or a psychiatrist. The condition responds well to medication, and there's no reason for you to be carrying all this anxiety and stress around with you any longer.
Please feel free to post here again – we’d like to know how you’re doing.
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