Gay/Lesbian Issues/New Relationship


I just came out and got a divorce of 10years to my exwife.  My religion and community are way behind in times.  I come from West Virginia country.  I just left and came out and moved to Baltimore, MD.  I found a great guy who has been out for the last ten years who is bisexual.  I myself being new to this world and even new to city life.  Everything is kinda scary.  Is it normal for us to not have intercourse through anal means?  I'm not too interested and he hasn't given me any indication he is interested in it either.  I'm not complaining.  I just don't know if it is normal.  I'm perfectly ok with the kissing and touching and everything else.  I actually think I enjoy that more than I would anal sex.  At least with this we are together looking at one another and feeling every inch.  We've talked about it but neither of us sound like its a problem but I don't know the gay community that well to know if he is just lying about that.  Is that a big part of a gay relationship or is it normal to not care to go that far very often.  Is there any advice you could give me?  This is my first gay experience and literally my first experience in a city.  Everyone is different, talks different, acts different, and its kinda overwhelming.  And exciting.  I still feel like talking and doing and asking for anything when it comes to our relationship is wrong.  I grew up very religious and even at one time went to college to become a preacher for my faith.  So its hard to open up about the sexual side of the relationship still.

Greetings James and thank you for sharing with me part of your journey.

I can appreciate your experience of being in a community that may be contrary to current cultural issues. It can certainly impact our mental health and our own sense of self or authenticity. I've been to Baltimore and knowing that Washington is close by, there's greater access to just about anything. And yes, everything can be a ball of excitement, fear, anxiety and liberation with all the newness around you. It can for some feel like a kind of re-birth.

Congratulations on meeting someone whom you feel a connection with emotionally and intimately. You asked whether a relationship with little to no sexual intercourse is normal. The short answer is YES it's normal. You and whomever your partner is needs to determine what your normal is. Not society, popular culture or your friends can determine that. In fact, a recent study came out that only 30% of men who have sex with me consistently include intercourse as part of their sexual activities. Most engage in oral sex, touching, sexual playfulness and other sexual behaviors. Even in long term happy and healthy relationships, sex (including intercourse)dwindles. Each person you meet is going to be and respond differently erotically. Unfortunately we are vulnerable to messages that reduce our sexuality, box us in, and create sexual illnesses.

What I invite you to think about when it comes to sex is:
- What and how does your body respond to with different forms of stimulation?
- What does your partner's body respond to with different forms of stimulation?
- What do you both enjoy together and separately?

Focus on "satisfaction" rather than goal oriented intercourse. This shift rather than intercourse may help quell stress and expectations.

I'm glad that you both talked about it. Continue to communicate and continue to talk/check-in with one another. An engaged mind emotionally, intellectually, and erotically can be very sexy.

I can understand that past messages of 'being wrong' can creep up or linger as if it were a dark cloud. That is expected. You've had years of conditioning that loving or attraction to another man is wrong. It may even creep up in years to come. What is important to know is that ideas, beliefs and thoughts are evolving. For some it may take time to recognize this evolution. I've worked with clients who share similar histories and with talking it through and as time passes, the impact of the messages fade. You may want to reach out to your local LGBT center in Maryland or Washington who can provide you with in-office counseling or a support group for those who have recently "come out". There are also therapists and counselors (like myself) who can offer Skype sessions if you don't feel comfortable with in-office meetings.

I hope this email answers some of your questions and provides you with food for thought. I wish you all best with your journey.  

Gay/Lesbian Issues

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Reece Malone


I can answer questions on sexual orientation, gender identity, gay, lesbian, bisexual, transgender and transsexual sexuality (youth and adult), coming out and disclosure, transgender and gender-non conformity including transition process, how to support a partner of someone GLBT, sexuality and faith/spirituality/religion, safer sex and harm reduction, comprehensive sexuality education, and questions from service providers working with LGBT individuals and families.


I'm currently a full time sexuality educator and facilitator specializing in sexual orientation and gender identity. I hold the positions of the Education Program Coordinator at the Rainbow Resource Centre (supporting LGBTTQ individuals, families and allies) as well as clinical sexologist at Four Rivers Medical Clinic in Winnipeg, Manitoba, Canada. My roles include: sexuality education, counseling/therapy, media spokesperson and consultant. I have sat on several non-profit sexuality organizations as well as been a consultant to the World Health Organization/Pan American Health Organization as well as the Public Health Agency of Canada. For more information visit:

American Association of Sexuality Educators Counselors and Therapists, The Society for the Scientific Study of Sexuality, The American College of Sexologists, The Canadian AIDS Information Treatment Exchange, The Canadian Professional Association for Transgender Health, The Sexual Health Educator's Network (Manitoba), The International Society for Sexual Medicine.

Malone, R. (2010). "ShoutOut Against Homophobia, Biphobia, Transphobia and Heterosexism." Rainbow Resource Centre. Winnipeg, Canada. Malone, R. et al (2010). "Your Questions Answered. Gender Identity in Schools." Public Health Agency of Canada. Ottawa, Canada.

Undergradate degree in sociology - specialized focus on human sexuality Masters of Public Health (Sexology) Doctorate of Human Sexuality

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