Gay/Lesbian/Bi Teens/Help with my sexuality and advice on addiction
I am an 18 year old male, a virgin and I am currently really struggling with a severe issue that has been plaguing me for the better half of a year now. I will tell you before hand, a little history.
I have had an IMMENSE problem with pornography for the better half of 7 years although in recent years, its really escalated and as of very recently, its gotten to the point last year where I began watching gay porn and ever since then, this whole thing has kind of taken off like a rocket. Prior to this, I had never had any sort of sexual or emotional desire for a male in my life, I had several relationships with females and greatly enjoyed them, so I was genuinely convinced I was gay or bisexual because of the fact that watching the gay porn turned me way on, it literally made my heart race in the same way that the straight porn used to.
I even did some experimenting by having online relationships with some bisexual and gay guys I had met although in the end, I wasn't really comfortable with them and I broke it off with all three because something just didn't feel right. I've been struggling as of recently with trying to quit watching pornography since I read up a little on HOCD and started to realize that if I quit the porn, perhaps these thoughts would go away. Its been rough since I'm currently at an online college and the workload is really stressful and I'm at the computer most of the day. Some weeks I'm fine but then other weeks, I just get an immense craving to watch porn, since the straight porn only does so much for me now, my mind craves the gay stuff and seeing muscled up guys in any way, shape or form. As a result, the thoughts are completely out of control, its like I have a little voice in my head telling me that I'm gay, that I'm hiding who I really am and it just doesn't stop !, it keeps on and the more I try to argue with this voice, the worse it becomes. It only stops if I either talk about this issue or I watch gay porn since the other stuff I used to watch just doesn't do it anymore. I feel like I'm a slave to this addiction and I can't seem to stop because a part of me just craves it.
The problem for me now is because I've gotten into a real life relationship with a girl who I'm head over heels for. In fact, just the other day, I had my first date with her and it was so perfect, my head was perfectly clear and it just felt natural to me to touch and kiss her, we didn't do anything really sexual besides touching and heavy making out but I was REALLY turned on by her. However, the problem is that I was examining the whole experience afterwards and I realized I didn't really feel anything in terms of intense emotion or anything like they say you are supposed to, like I was just doing it without thinking and these thoughts came back saying that I was gay even though I clearly enjoyed everything we did. My question to you is, do you think I'm gay because of what I've just told you or am I truly suffering from a porn addiction and HOCD ? I can't tell what I am anymore and I don't know what to think anymore.
Hi Mathias-Tobias, it's nice to hear from you.
While reading your question it sounded very similar to an experience I have gone through with porn as well.
I have good news and bad news for you. The bad news is that unfortunately there are very little studies that have been done on this. The reason is because this is a new problem that is just beginning to get attention. It's great that you’re able to come fourth and share your experiences with porn. There are more guys out there who are similar to you who have not reached out who could use a bit of assistance/education on this topic, so I would like to commend you on that. Since there is such little information, you need to be even more careful about what information you get about it online and what their source is since it's likely not backed up by medical studies. The good news, is that I have found a solution that is semi-quick, was recommended be a professional who studied this and whom you can verify the information for yourself too. When I was feeling very similar to you, I did a search online for information as well. The best source of research/information that I found was a panel of experts from a segment on the TV Show "Dr. Oz". I highly suggest that you watch all 4 clips on the website because I think you'll really benefit from them.
The link is http://www.doctoroz.com/videos/can-porn-cause-erectile-dysfunction-pt-1
I followed their advice from the show and it worked for me. They suggest that you go 28 days without any type of stimulation whatsoever. No porn, no masturbation, no serious rubbing, no kidding!! I'll explain the scientific reason for everything in the next paragraph. Feel free to skip it if you’re not interested.
When we watch porn or have something exciting happen, our brain releases a chemical called Dopamine. When Dopamine is released into our body, our brains want that plus more of it. This explains why something that turned you on a couple years ago wouldn't even come close to doing it now. Basically, your brain doesn't produce much Dopamine from it, so it doesn't feel like a new high so it doesn't really care. Thankfully there is a simple cure of no stimulation for 28 straight days. The reason that this should work, is because you’re giving your brain a chance to reset and start over. At the end of 28 days, you'll likely be aroused by attractive underwear models just standing there.
Since I have gone through something similar, I'll tell you a little bit more about my experience. Once again, I should remind you that this may/may not be similar to your situation since there is such little research done on it. It may be related or completely unrelated but since we don't know I'd rather you know just in case. For me, within the 1st week of no stimulation of any kind, I went through symptoms that are similar to being sick or what most likely was happening - withdrawal. I had headaches, tiredness and pain that was so bad moving off the bed took approx 15mins. In my life I had moles & wisdom teeth removed, pink eye, chicken pox, 2nd degree sunburns with bubbles coming out of it, but what I felt during that time was by far the absolute worse. Before you begin, stock up on some soup, ice cream and animated Disney movies just in case. Since there isn't much information on this topic, I can't say for sure that you will experience something similar, but there is a chance it may happen. If you watch porn or masturbate in those 28 days, you will have to start over and try again until you can finish all 28 of them, however the withdrawal/sick like symptoms will not recur (I only had them once for 3 days). It may take a few attempts to finish 28 straight days of no stimulation. For myself personally, it took me 6 months before I was able to finish the 28 days, so be your own best friend and don't be hard on yourself if you mess up.
Now, assuming that you finished your 28 days with no stimulation of any kind, it's time to find out about your sexuality. If you get turned on by guys or girls after that time, you know it's not because of the porn and because that's what you want. As a personal rule, I don't suggest that anyone enter a relationship with someone until they know where their sexuality lies. The reason being is because you need the time to figure it for yourself and also because you could end up leading someone on unintentionally and end up breaking their heart. I wouldn't worry about the relationship with the 3 guys not working out. If you are Gay/Bi, your clearly not ready for a relationship (since you have doubts and porn to work through), so to be fair it could just be bad timing.
After your done your 28 days, I think you should watch porn very little (once a month if that) and return to masturbating. See what gender you think about when you’re going at it and go from there. If your brain is showing you someone who you wish you weren't attracted to, don't ignore it and just go with it. It would be time to rediscover what you’re attracted to and if it's straight/gay/bi that's fine.
I would also like to mention something else about porn. All types of porn are heavily edited and scripted. Even "amateur" porn is only showing what they want you to see. I'm telling/reminding you this because I want to make sure that you don't have an unrealistic idea of what sex is and what you should be like, comparing yourself to a porn star is fighting a losing battle and will not help your self-esteem. Here are some facts about porn I want you to know...
1. Guys don't walk around with erections all the time and are ready as fast as it appears if they see someone attractive.
2. If a guy does see someone he's into, he may not necessarily be erect as fast as it happens in Porn. The reason is because different guys like different things, some might like foreplay first to get them hard, others being teased by their partner. If you see someone you find attractive don't think that something's wrong just because you’re not hard after your 1st kiss. Finding out what turns you on and how someone can do it to you is part of the fun. Your fantasy can come into play with this part too.
3. Sex in the real world can be messy, planned, embarrassing, possibly even confusing among other things. Since porn is so scripted, it doesn't show any of this.
4. Sometimes when a guy is with someone he may not get hard at all because he could be too nervous. Again, porn doesn't show this side of people; only the part that would make them the most money. If this happens, time and communication would help the most.
If you have any more questions or if I can help out any further, please feel free to send me a follow-up message.
Best of luck and don't forget to take it 1 day at a time,