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Smthng56
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Well, hello everyone. I dont know how I found out scarleteen first time, but been reading it from time to time. Have to say that Its a nice thing that Heather and staff doing here.

Khm.. basically, I just wanna tell my thoughts.. or story.. whatever.

And sorry for not-so-good english.

Im 23 years old male. Im living in an self-conflict that really spoils my life sometimes.
Cant really tell anything 100% sure, but Im attracted to both women and men, but in different way. To make it rather clear - I never ever had any sexual or romantic relationships.. even never had a first kiss.. hehe. Im a quite "closed" person in terms of keeping my private feelings and thoughts to myself. Well, the brain-f***ing started 2 years ago, after a had another failed crush on a girl. I was quite depressed after that, but it made me realize that i never "wanted" her, it was just a sympathy. Another thing i realized was that i actually like men.. in sexual way and probably always liked.. since school maybe. I always notice handsome men (beautiful women too.. but in esthetic way), only have spontaneous fantasies about men.. etc. Of course, i never ever tried to show it.. not in any ways. It was quite stupid to deny, cause years before i found out porn sites (ye shame on me hehe)and was interested in gay stuff lot more then hetero. It was just in back on my mind and i.. just ignored it, separated it from myself, if u ppl know what i mean. Have to notice that mostly im quite masculine (at least nobody say opposite thing) in looks, clothes and behavior.. only thing is that im wearing long hair.. but that just cause im a metalhead hehe. So.. i never had problem with people around, nobody would guess that i have some kind of "issues".. well, of course, a young guy that never had a GF is quite suspicious for ppl, right. Anyway, strangely, im quite ok with being bisexual or even gay.. nor i have problem with being hetero, on other hand - homophobic society (living in russia), homophobic and religious family (christianity..), homophobic friends.. and so on. It all just grows my inner homophobe.
In conclusion - at the moment im just closed to everyone and everything, feel myself in corner and constantly thinking about all this, generally depressed and "caressing" psychosomatic deseases.. heh.
I have read enough of articles about sexual stuff, medical too (im a medic).
So if anyone have any comments or anything to share or say.. would be nice [Smile]

Thnx.

[ 03-23-2010, 04:49 PM: Message edited by: Smthng56 ]

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Heather
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Could you maybe fill us in a little more on what you're looking for from us? [Smile]

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Smthng56
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Yeah, im sorry for not being clear enough. Actually feeling stupid for that post. Cant delete it myself, so remove it, please. Thnx.

[ 03-24-2010, 10:05 AM: Message edited by: Smthng56 ]

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Heather
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You don't need to be sorry, and I don't have to delete it if you don't want. I'm just trying to get a better sense of what you feel like you need around all of this. I got a good sense of your situation, but not of your needs within it.

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Heather Corinna, Executive Director & Founder, Scarleteen
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Never doubt that a small group of thoughtful, committed citizens can change the world. Indeed, it is the only thing that ever has. - Margaret Mead

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Smthng56
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Alright..
I've made the first post being in low and worrying mood. Im starting to think that im slowly riding into depression. I have no desire to think about any future, to talk to ppl, to go anywhere. Although i wont say "no" if friends invite me somewhere, i will drink, smile and laugh, but theres no real pleasure from it, its like apart from me. I feel good enough at work, when i got lot of things to think about, but as i return home i dont want to do anything and start to think about all that stuff i mentioned in first post, generally in negative way, its same day after day. I started to have problems with health, maybe even became bit hypochondric.
Well, i feel weak and i hate feeling weak. And its annoying that everything seems to come from sexual sphere, feeling bit.. primitive.
Im studying psychology and psychiatry.. soon to become a psychiatrist, so i kinda know how to "deal" with patient's mind.. but hardly can control my own.
Have to admit that partly im just being selfish trying to use this place to talk over private stuff. Im quite a psychasthenic, cant decide lot of things without a good kick from outside.
I was thinking to go see a psychotherapist.. but im afraid and not sure if it all worth it or im just being stupid and exaggerating it all.
And thnx for reply, Heather. I would want to see a professional opinion. I hope this will make a picture more clear. I have read lot of threads on this forum, but still can't link it up to myself.

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Heather
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That does sound very much like some common symptoms of depression. And as any good psychiatrist or psychologist will tell you, understanding you can't treat yourself is pretty important. There simply isn't the needed objectivity! [Smile]

There's nothing selfish in talking out one's issues here: that's what we're here for.

It certainly sounds like you'd benefit from checking in with a counselor on this: can you set that up?

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Never doubt that a small group of thoughtful, committed citizens can change the world. Indeed, it is the only thing that ever has. - Margaret Mead

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Smthng56
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Oh well, probably its quite obvious. But i dont quite understand what kind of counselor you mean? psychologist, psychotherapist, sexologist? Actually, i had one visit to sexologist last year, it took me a month to be get brave enough to go there, but it failed, cause i just couldnt make myself tell him whats on my mind. He prescribed hormone tests, it was all normal, and thats it. I tried to talk to mother about that stuff, but it failed too cause felt too guilty.
And as im here.. in your opinion, my sexual orientation is closer to homosexual judging from things i wrote? Thnx for answers.

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Heather
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A sexologist isn't the same as a sex therapist. Sexologist is just a term we use to describe any of us who study sexuality. A sex therapist is someone who provides counseling around sexual issues.

You're describing symptoms of depression, so I'd just start with a psychologist or psychiatrist.

In terms of your orientation, I really don't have enough information from you to say. While no one needs to be in actual relationships to have a good sense of their orientation, I do think it can be tough to figure out what one is, especially as an outside person, when someone hasn't had any history of relationships/interactions to evaulate. But based on what you have said so far here, and what information you have to work with, you appear to be expressing feelings for both men and women, though it sounds like your feelings for men are stronger.

I'd be inclined to say that sounds more like possible bisexuality to me, but at the same time, you express strong fears of being homosexual, so it's tough to get a clear view of things. Know what I mean?

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Heather Corinna, Executive Director & Founder, Scarleteen
About Me • Get our book!
Never doubt that a small group of thoughtful, committed citizens can change the world. Indeed, it is the only thing that ever has. - Margaret Mead

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Smthng56
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I used wrong word, i meant sex therapist - a psychiatrist/psychotherapist specialized on sexual issues or sexopathologist.. at least thats how its called here.
I see that theres not enough of information, but what you said is quite enough for me.
And you are right, my main issue is the fear.
And im not quite sure of what you mean by last sentence.

[ 03-25-2010, 10:25 AM: Message edited by: Smthng56 ]

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Heather
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To clarify my last sentence: when someone is deeply afraid of homosexuality/is homophobic in any way, it usually clouds/presents a barrier to their awareness and understanding of their own sexual orientation or that of others.

In other words, if homosexuality is or feels like in any way, the wrong answer, or something terrible or scary, a person is going to tend to be inclined to be so reactive to that, so aversive to that, that it's hard to see things clearly.

Make more sense?

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Heather Corinna, Executive Director & Founder, Scarleteen
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Never doubt that a small group of thoughtful, committed citizens can change the world. Indeed, it is the only thing that ever has. - Margaret Mead

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Smthng56
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Yes, thanks for explanation. I will try to make myself arrange a visit to therapist. A colleague of mine advised me a good psychotherapist, he is in another city now, but will be back in 2 weeks.
Thnx for answers, Heather.

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Smthng56
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Just a little update.. cause have to share it with someone: went to psychotherapist, he said i've got neurotic depression on background of ego-dystonic homosexuality/bisexuality. And that might need antidepressants and course of therapy. That was quite a strike for me.
My family knew i will go to a doctor, but not very fused about telling them everything. I escaped questions about my visit, but i dont feel well, cause i see mother being "tensed" in my presence. I just have no heart to tell her or father anything. But same time i feel selfish cause i make them worry. They are smart enough to not to press on me, thats good. So, should I wait for a better moment (maybe when done with therapy but that will take weeks) or just do explanation now? Would be nice to get advice at that. Thnx.

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Heather
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You are aware that ego-dystonic orientation was removed from the DSM over 20 years ago after homosexuality was, yes?

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Heather Corinna, Executive Director & Founder, Scarleteen
About Me • Get our book!
Never doubt that a small group of thoughtful, committed citizens can change the world. Indeed, it is the only thing that ever has. - Margaret Mead

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Smthng56
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Hmm, i honestly didn't know. Anyway we use ICD-10 in russia and it still has it. In DSM its still kind of included under non-specified sexual disorders. But does it matter?..
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Heather
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Well, it matters in that treating your potentially being homosexual or bisexual but not wanting to be (which is what that diagnosis means) as a mental or sexual disorder is very outmoded and outdated. The same is true of treating homosexuality or bisexuality as mental or sexual disorders. All of those things were removed from the DSM here because it was clear they were based in bias and not supported by science.

Where it doesn't matter is that clearly, this is a discomfort you have, so therapy to help you be more comfortable with whatever your orientation is would be sound.

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Heather Corinna, Executive Director & Founder, Scarleteen
About Me • Get our book!
Never doubt that a small group of thoughtful, committed citizens can change the world. Indeed, it is the only thing that ever has. - Margaret Mead

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Smthng56
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Well, russian medicine is quite conservative. I don't care tbh.

I have to say im quite up for therapy.. but it still scares me.

Anyway, would like to hear your opinion about question i asked.

[ 04-06-2010, 09:49 AM: Message edited by: Smthng56 ]

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Heather
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Regarding your parents?

Well, I don't see any reason not to tell them about the neurotic depression.

In terms of the issues about orientation, I'd say that it seems to me like you still need more time to work on dumping your fears and to figure out what your orientation is, something I'm betting you won't know for a little while. Otherwise, you'd effectively be coming out to them both when you don't know, and when doing so is likely to only heighten all the anxiety you have around it, which strikes me as counter to what you need to feel better.

It also sounds like you don't want to tell them yet, no?

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Heather Corinna, Executive Director & Founder, Scarleteen
About Me • Get our book!
Never doubt that a small group of thoughtful, committed citizens can change the world. Indeed, it is the only thing that ever has. - Margaret Mead

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Smthng56
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Well, you're right. I probably need to calm down a bit. Im not quite sure if i want to tell them or not. I need to turn on my brain first.

Anyway, thnx again, Heather.

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Heather
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Glad to be of help. [Smile]

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Heather Corinna, Executive Director & Founder, Scarleteen
About Me • Get our book!
Never doubt that a small group of thoughtful, committed citizens can change the world. Indeed, it is the only thing that ever has. - Margaret Mead

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Smthng56
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Khem, well.. wouldnt mind a small advice/opinion.
I've been working with therapist for about 1,5 months now and taking course of antidepressant. The depression seems to fade away now, although therapy does not progress so well. The therapist suggested me to visit another, "gay-friendly" therapist.. saying that maybe it will be easier for me. I really dont have anyone to talk about it. So, i feel bit.. scared to go there, feeling like there wont be a "way back".. no point of return. Its quite hard to explain why i feel so, cause i've got lot of issues and sexuality is just a top of iceberg. You think it will be good to go to a gay-friendly therapist for someone who has strong inner homophobia, considering that, according to sex therapist, im a bisexual greatly leaning towards homosexualty? Or should i hold on for abit? cause i still have thought to try to build a hetero relationship, suppressing my dominating sexuality part.. just for sake.. well, a try.

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Heather
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I think that therapist's suggestion is an excellent one.

We have loads and loads of evidence that sexual orientation can't be suppressed: people can just choose to act on it or not. The idea you could do it when we know it doesn't work...well, I understand suspending logic when you're just that afraid, but you're still suspending logic.

In the case you ARE earnestly heterosexual, than seeing a gay-friendly therapist can't change that. Again, no one can forcibly change their orientation, nor can any external force or person do that. However, in the event that you are not, that person can probably help you a whole lot. And no matter what your orientation is, homophobia will always hurt you and others, so working on getting past that is of value to you and to everyone.

[ 05-24-2010, 11:04 AM: Message edited by: Heather ]

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Heather Corinna, Executive Director & Founder, Scarleteen
About Me • Get our book!
Never doubt that a small group of thoughtful, committed citizens can change the world. Indeed, it is the only thing that ever has. - Margaret Mead

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Smthng56
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I can understand that im not a heterosexual. Oh, and by gay-friendly i meant that therapist has homosexual orientation. Just to make it clear. When i even thinking about that visit, i feel.. scared, meh i dont know how to express it in other words.
Whatever, i got your opinion, its very logical. I will have to think more about it. Thank you.

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Heather
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Gay-friendly therapists are not always gay or bisexual. In therapy practice, when a therapist says they are gay-friendly, they mean they don't have any biases with LGBT clients and welcome them and who they are per their orientation.

However, in the case the therapist him or herself is LGB, not sure why that would concern you, or even be anything different than a heterosexual therapist.

Of course, you've also been talking with queer people here the whole time. [Smile]

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Heather Corinna, Executive Director & Founder, Scarleteen
About Me • Get our book!
Never doubt that a small group of thoughtful, committed citizens can change the world. Indeed, it is the only thing that ever has. - Margaret Mead

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Smthng56
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Oh, i dont want u to think that im homophobic to anyone except myself, i would never let myself make a homophobic comment. The problem is only my approach to my own orientation, its one of the things that ruins the therapy. Its just hard for me and im trying to get through.
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Smthng56
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Hello here. Um, lot of time passed since i started to post here. Just wanted to say thanks, cause this site was a "starting point" for me to change my life to new, hopefully better, direction. Im doing some steps to coming out, still on some therapy, even participated in psychotherapy group where i came out as queer person and got mostly positive reactions. [Smile] Theres almost no shame or guilt left in me, but it still seems bit unrealistic and scary. Who knows what will be anyway. [Smile] Thanks again, Heather.
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Heather
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What wonderful news! I really appreciate your checking in to let me know. [Smile]

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Heather Corinna, Executive Director & Founder, Scarleteen
About Me • Get our book!
Never doubt that a small group of thoughtful, committed citizens can change the world. Indeed, it is the only thing that ever has. - Margaret Mead

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Smthng56
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Just wanna do small update. On this weekend I came out to 2 of my oldest friends, both girls (surprise, surprise.. hehe), first they was quite shocked, but then they both started to cry and hugged me, saying that its great of me to share it with them. They both also said that they would never have guessed it, what was very surprising for me, cause sometimes I thought that my sexuality could be obvious, at least to people who knew me for biggest part of my life. Anyway, surprisingly it was quite easy to tell, I didn't expect it from myself. Although I asked them to not to tell about it to anyone, Im bit worried about it, cause they really like gossips..
Also, when I told about myself to them, I started to think: "why I am confessing in something that im not completely sure of?". I didn't have any.. erm..interpersonal relationships yet, but my feelings, they seem so.. natural? So, i wonder.. can you be sure in your sexuality before you actually tried it? Just feels weird.

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Heather
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Actually, I'd say the idea that your sexuality is something to "try" is iffy. So is the idea that if you have sex with one person or even a few people, that can tell you with certainty who you are and how you feel about your sexuality as a whole, or about your feelings towards a whole gender. Usually, all it can really tell you is how you feel about those unique individuals and being with them in that moment and time, even if it can also sometimes give some cues that are more broad.

You might also want to remind yourself that it's highly unusual for anyone to, say, tell small children who talk about the opposite-sex person in their dreams they may marry some day that they probably don't know their orientation yet, you know? I rarely hear anyone saying to heterosexual people of any age they need to have sexual or romantic partners to know they're heterosexual for sure.

But let's figure this: all you can know -- all any of us can know -- is how you feel now and how you have felt up to this point. It's based on those things that we, should we choose, make calls on what our orientation is and feels like. If that changes in the future, it changes in the future, but we can't know if it will or it won't now, whatever our sexual experiences have or have not been. No one can.

I'm glad you felt able to come out to some friends, and am so glad it went well. [Smile]

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Heather Corinna, Executive Director & Founder, Scarleteen
About Me • Get our book!
Never doubt that a small group of thoughtful, committed citizens can change the world. Indeed, it is the only thing that ever has. - Margaret Mead

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Smthng56
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Thanks again, Heather [Smile]

I understand what you talking about and I actually know why its hard for me to take it as it is - im just kind of person that needs everything to be "right", clear and categorized. So, thinking about sexuality as something so fluid and ever-changing is kinda strange for me.
Honestly, I was thinking recently that im ready for a relationship (same-sex one)and I would go for it if it would be possible. But still theres always a thought on the background: "what if its a mistake?". I know its not right, but it has deep roots in my mind.

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Heather
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Expecting sexuality to be clear and easy to categorize is something I'd tell you to try and let go of. There's very little in the world that is as diverse, complex and often unclear as this. And what is or isn't right is very individual.

I think with thinking about relationships, you might want to figure that ANY relationship, for anyone, could be something we consider or find to be a mistake or could be something we consider or find to be just right for us. I think it's safe to say that with most, it's usually somewhere in between, or rather, a combination of those things depending on the day, month or year. Relationships, like sexuality, are not static.

So, what you need to do is just do your best to only pursue the relationships you want and feel right for you at a given time, with people and in contexts that seem healthy and, overall, beneficial. Then, when you're in them, you just do your best to be a good communicator and to be a kind, caring person with whoever you're with, in whatever capacity.

If, at any time, a relationship doesn't feel right for you or someone else, then you talk about that and make changes, including if that means walking away from something.

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Heather Corinna, Executive Director & Founder, Scarleteen
About Me • Get our book!
Never doubt that a small group of thoughtful, committed citizens can change the world. Indeed, it is the only thing that ever has. - Margaret Mead

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Smthng56
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Yeah, you are so right. All you say sounds so logical.
Actually, now im looking forward to see what future will bring me. I would probably feel more free and confident if situation around queer people would be better in this country, but, I guess, its not as bad as it could be.
Thank for the talk, Heather. Off now, thank you.

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Smthng56
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Hello, Heather. I would like to get some insight from you.. again [Smile] So, I was recently introduced by some buddy to a gay guy (probably first other queer person I know), that proposed me to go to some kind of LGBT meeting on tuesday. I think I want to go there, but even thinking about I start to get really nervous, feeling my heart beating. Im really concerned about why I'm so freaky nervous about it. I have some kind of "fear" that I will meet someone there that will grow to like me, will try to ask me out etc. Or it can also be the fear of "being in the spotlight", cause I can be really self-doubt. I started to remember the wish of being "less attractive" that I had in youth. Are any of these feelings familiar to you?
PS: Meh.. sometimes I really understand why I'm working in psychiatry.. hehe [Wink]
Thank you.

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Heather
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Good to see you again! Oddly enough, I was just talking about you to my partner ysterday when I brought up how few users we hear from who are from Russia. [Smile]

I can't say that those kind of feelings are familiar to me, personally, because I never personally felt anything but relief and joy to have access to queer community.

But if in asking me if I find them familiar, if you mean from others folks, then sure. There can be a lot of reasons to feel nervous about putting yourself out there in queer community. want to try and unpack some of what you feel like yours are together?

(Mind, if you don't feel ready for that, you know that's okay, too, right? If not, it's not like this is the only opportunity you'll ever have in this regard.)

[ 03-13-2011, 04:38 PM: Message edited by: Heather ]

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eryn_smiles
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I don't know whether it helps to hear, but I used to get very nervous going along to various LGBT youth groups. Sometimes there were days I would just look at the drop-in centre from across the road, or I would walk past but not quite be able to go inside (worrying about whether someone I knew from uni might see me). At first, I couldn't really talk much once there but would just reply to other's questions. There were many fears, some of which didn't make much sense. Worrying about people liking me too much or not liking me at all/ not fitting in, being outed before I was ready. I guess the main thing I'd say is that those fears mostly turned out to be unfounded and that the more I went along, the easier it became for me. I live in NZ, not Russia, so of course it is a bit different. The supportive people I found in those places, they made it worth taking those risks. Even now, when I go along to a new queer group, I sometimes feel fearful. But I am proud of myself that I'm able to go and meet people despite feeling a bit scared and I make sure I take care of myself afterwards.

I wish you all the best with this [Smile] . I've also met a few queer therapists and psychiatrists over the years and I'd bet that over time, you may find support within your working community too.

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"Caring for myself is not self-indulgence, it is self-preservation and that is an act of political warfare."

Audre Lorde

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Smthng56
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Hi, Heather. May I ask what you was discussing about Russian with your partner? if not a secret [Smile]

quote:
Originally posted by Heather:
want to try and unpack some of what you feel like yours are together?

I'm not sure what you mean here, sorry.

quote:
Originally posted by Heather:
(Mind, if you don't feel ready for that, you know that's okay, too, right? If not, it's not like this is the only opportunity you'll ever have in this regard.)

Im not that scared to not to go there.. anyway, it will just cost me few neuron cells.. haha [Wink] I already arranged meeting time with that guy, so Im going..

I would also say that its quite hard to talk about "queer community" here, it does exist, but its very far from such in western world, nothing like I could see in foreign movies and documentaries. Really big lack of support from government and society in general.

Eryn_smiles, thanks for your support, its helpful [Smile] You know, I do understand that its normal to be nervous, everyone would be in such situation. I just really hope that my fears will be unfounded [Smile]

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