Posted by: seeking help | 2007/05/13

Getting through this

Hi all,

I'm trying to come to terms with my sexuality. I know that I am not 100% straight, but I also know that I don't want to persue a gay lifestyle. So as you can imagine, there is major conflict going on in my life at the moment.

I wish to get some counselling - can anyone recommend where I start looking for a counselor?

I'm in JHB


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Our expert says:
Expert ImageGay, lesbian and bisexual expert

Hi Seeking Help, welcome to the forum and thanks for posting here.

First off, I'm not sure what you mean by 'a gay lifestyle'. In Straightville gay people have a 'lifestyle' but everyone else has a 'life'. Why is that?

There is no such thing as a 'gay lifestyle'. I even doubt that there is a real gay 'community' - being gay does define your life. Sexual orientation doesn't dictate your values, your needs, fears or aspirations, it doesn't determine where you live or what work you do and it doesn't determine the quality of your relationships. Being gay is NOT about frequenting gay clubs or bars, using drugs, cruising or being into porn. It isn't about being down, lonely, alone or depressed. It doesn't determine your world view, your politics or your religion. It doesn't make you good or bad. It doesn't mean that you're promiscuous, shallow or hedonistic. It doesn't imply that you'll run around in crazy outfits, cross dress or attend wild parties.

Being gay simply means that you'll probably love someone of the same sex.

The majority of gay people are NOT hanging around in gay clubs, bars or other venues - they're living their lives around you in cities and small towns, going to work, participating in the economy, voting, striving to better themselves. In South Africa we have at least two gay MPs (there could very well be more), at least two gay judges, one Bishop (that I know of - there could be more) and countless gay people holding key social positions. In short, being gay doesn't determine your life.

Maybe someone else can recommend a gay-friendly counsellor in Johannesburg?

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Our users say:
Posted by: Gareth | 2007/05/14

The biggest issue here is not whether you want to persue a gay or straight lifestyle. Your perception of a gay lifestyle might be wrong. The most important thing is that you should be comfortable in your own skin, and be whatever you are without conflict or guilt. And whatever your view of a gay lifestyle is, it does not mean that if you accept that you are gay that you should start lisping your "s", or relax your wrists or walk funny or anything of the sort (guys, sorry, I am not trying to offend anyone and I am not trying to stereotype). You can still be exactly who you are now and be gay/straight/bisexual, whatever. Most important is that you are you at all times.

As for a counsellor, good idea, and there are really loads of them in Jhb that will be able to assist you in dealing with this, but YOU need to take that first step. Have a look on Health24's "find" section and you'll get lists of therapists in your area. You can do this, I know you can.

Reply to Gareth
Posted by: Chameleon_boy | 2007/05/13

Hey seeking help!

Well dude (sorry i am assuming you are male) this is a hard thing to come to terms with as most of us have learnt, i only have one question for you, what do you mean by a gay lifestyle? I am just asking this because your perception of what constitutes a gay lifestyle might be as warped as mine was (everyone sleeps around with everyone else - aids is rampant etc.)

You really need to come to terms with your sexuality, either as gay or bi-sexual, and there you are right - the best thing to do is go and see a therapist or counselor of some sort, but like its been said many times:

- Being gay or bisexual is nothing to be ashamed of, just come to terms with who you are then you'll see that life will become easier in some ways. Speak to some-one and please keep us updated on whats going on... the guys n gals here are really helpful in advice and just a shoulder to lean on when you need some-one!!

Good luck and please dont worry, we are here for you!!

Stax of hugs

Chamboy XXX

Reply to Chameleon_boy

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