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QUESTION: Doug-- I've come across certain behavioral therapy techniques that supposedly affects sexual arousal. One is called arousal reconditioning which is the process of masturbating to a deviant fantasy and then right before orgasm switching to a "normal" more appropriate one. The reason why I am asking this is because I am tired of having exclusive same sex fantasies. Bisexuality would be a much better option, opening my door to more opportunity. However, these exclusively gay thoughts make heterosexual arousal difficult. I have tried heterosexual sex twice. Both times were difficult and I had to use same sex fantasies in order to get hard and stay hard. However, more recently I've grinded with a girl(clothes on) and found myself totally erect. Maybe I am getting more comfortable with the idea of heterosexual sex, but a girl's body is not really turning me on. Do behavioral techniques such as arousal reconditioning work to any degree? In the past couple weeks I haven't ejaculated to a same sex fantasy, only to opposite sex. I would start off thinking about other guys, then switch to girls right before orgasm. Not sure if this will increase my attraction towards girls, or if I'm spinning my wheels. I've vowed to take the next eight weeks and abstain from gay porn (and same sex thoughts) and try to internalize something erotic about the opposite sex. I don't want it to feel forced or mechanical.

ANSWER: I'm not familiar with arousal reconditioning.  If you think it's helping you, then go for it.  Are you trying to convert to being heterosexual?  That is a controversial area of therapy that should only be attempted with a competent therapist.  It's so controversial that California just outlawed it for minors.  

I always tell people that whatever you fantasize about is up to you.  It's good to have more than one fantasy that turns you on.  If in your case that means both men and women, then go for it.  

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QUESTION: I'm trying to go in the heterosexual direction (if that's even possible). I know there's varying degrees of bisexuality and a spectrum between straight and gay. Being in that "middle" area seems more ideal. There's something that is very shallow and unfulfilling about my sexual relationships with other guys. There's no emotions or desire for any relationship. It's nothing more than sexual attraction or a quick bust of the nut. I'm thinking more of my future and would be interested in pursuing a relationship with a girl if I can develop some degree of sexual attraction towards them. I've encountered many bisexual guys and I always feel jealousy towards them, wishing I was them. Also in social situations such as bars, I am always presumed straight. A lot of times a girl will hit on me and put me in that awkward situation of dodging a bullet or going for it. I think opening my mind to the opposite sex will open up some great opportunities however I run into such a murky, controversial area. All the research is inconclusive on whether or not you can modify sexual arousal/attraction. No one even knows why some people are straight, gay, or bi. The "born that way theory" makes me feel like I am a preprogrammed robot with no hope.

I've read articles on how our brains can be "wired" to porn and that even straight men can be "wired" to gay porn. I was wondering if our sexual preferences/orientation follow some sort of deep rooted conditioning that wires itself. You can actually "unwire" yourself from certain types of porn through enough abstinence (no masturbation, no porn). I wonder what effect it would have at all if I stopped masturbating and looking at porn for a period of time. Sorry for this long response.

ANSWER: I don't know much about that, but when the woman hits on you in the bar, why don't you go for it?  It seems like that would be more therapeutic than anything else.  By definition, if you're having sexual relations with both men and women, you're bisexual.  I don't know much about reparative therapy except that it's very controversial.  I'm sure a reparative therapist would be happy to have you as a client, but I don't know if it would achieve what you want.

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QUESTION: The reason I don't go for a woman in the bar is because there's not a huge pull or attraction to them. I've had sex with way more guys than girls. There's a bit of anxiety on whether or not I can get it up for a girl. In a few situations I was totally aroused by grinding or making out, but not so much by her boobs. Basically I can respond to some stimulation but when a girl takes her top off there's not a huge "wow" factor. At best I can only get slightly (barely) aroused. To me, that is more indicative of being almost totally gay as opposed to bi. My question is, can I condition myself to like women's bodies? That's been the challenge because there is a lot of mixed, confusing information out there.

I've read all the reparative therapy theories (weak, distance father and overbearing mother) and ironically it fits my life almost 100%. I'm not sure if my attraction to guys is an attempt to fix what's broken, but I will say that I do have terrible body image even though I work out and have some muscle mass. I'm not only very sexually attracted to muscular guys, I desire to be them. There's a bit of a catch-22 there. At least with a girl, I don't have all that psychological baggage (feelings of inferiority). However, there's not a huge desire for one. I'm thinking a behavioral therapy technique may work best (only ejaculating to female images). Maybe it will impact my brain on what I find attractive. Who knows. As young as five years old, I do remember having crushes ONLY on girls. When I reached puberty, it shifted to guys and has been that way since. Girls became boring. Femininity became a turn off.

Answer
I don't know much about this, as I've said before, but if you are aroused easily by men's bodies but have trouble getting aroused by women's bodies, then I think it's pretty likely that you're homosexual and not bisexual.  

I know more about reparative therapy being controversial than about the nuts and bolts of the theory.  If you think it will help, then talk to a professional about it.  More likely a psychologist would tell you to accept your sexuality rather than try to change it.

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Doug Adams, Ph.D.

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I am happy to answer all kinds of questions about sexuality.

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I have been answering questions about sexuality from both males and females for over 13 years on my web site HealthyStrokes.com. I have been an expert on AllExperts.com for over four years and am currently an expert in eight sexuality categories. I am the top expert in seven of the eight categories.

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