My story, any advice would be helpful - kind of long

Submitted by markcoleman on
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I'm 33 now. I have only gotten erections from girls - naked girls in a random movies, seeing down girls shirts, looking up girls skirts. I started all of this at an early age, maybe 11 or 12. I would sit in class all day and pick out a girl and fantasize about her. I have never gotten an erection from a guy.

My first time masturbating was to a woman from the show MASH. I found my dads stash of Hustlers in sixth grade and masturbated to them sometimes 6 times a day. He also had some porn videos I would watch religiously.

I only wanted to date girls. There were at least 2 girls a year that I wanted to date and would instinctively try and make eye contact with them in the middle of class.

Here's where the weird part comes in. Since I was very young, maybe 7 or 8, I have always gotten very turned on by being naked in front of other people, and exposing my genitals to them. It didn't matter if it was a guy, a girls, a family member, I would get turned on. I remember flashing a car of teenagers that drove by my house at night when I was like 8 yrs old. I remember in 5th grade the teacher telling us to practice showering in public so we would be ready for the 6th grade gym classes, and me really being interested in this suggestion. I remember asking my mom if I could sleep naked at night. And, I remember myself and my brother streaking in the basement and I got an erection from being naked.

So, after masturbating non-stop to Hustlers and porn and girls in my class for years, in about the 10th grade I started to go to the local gym and walk around naked just to get aroused, I wouldn't flash anyone, but just stay towards the back, but also where people could see me. Later that year I started to masturbate to being naked in front of people, and simulations of situations where I would have to take off my clothes in front of them. Some of the scenarios were in front of a nurse, others were in front of my mom, and alot of the scenarios were in front of guys. Like it would be me having to shower after gym class with one of the other guys and we would start to masturbate. Some times there was touching in the scenarios, but it was only after I was so aroused by undressing in front of the guy. If I imagined us doing anything sexual outright, it would turn me off completely.

This went on for a few years, of walking around naked and masturbating to scenarios where I had to be naked. The whole time though I was still pursuing girls and getting erections from them by just making out and almost messing my pants if a girl would just rub my thigh. I never had the drive or thought to be with a guy.

Now when I was about 21, a guy called me gay and this instant insane reaction happened where all of a sudden I started to check and see if I was gay and even felt gay. But, after a short time of that I thought that he was just kidding with me and I instantly felt better. This reaction freaked me out though. When I was 22, I went to a psychologist for some social anxiety I had been experiencing, sweaty hands etc... I decided to mention about me masturbating to those above scenarios. I wanted to mention it because that whole thing with being called gay the year before and my reaction to it had me a little worried it could happen again. So, I decide to tell the pscyhologist I masturbated to guys, and then I would go into the whole thing about my fetish and I thought she would probably say it was normal or something like that. So, I tell her and she leans in and starts writing on her notepad and I say "well, it wasn't exactly to guys" and she says "what was it too then"? And, I start trying to explain and she goes silent for the rest of the time and this freaks me out and instantly I start having gay thoughts and start feeling like I am gay.

After that one session where she just stayed quiet, I guess what she was using was pscyhodynamic techniques, it completely messed me up and I have had a hard time being around people and being in relationships for the past 10 years. I just recently found out about HOCD, and have been wondering if this is actually this, or if I am actually in some sort of denial. Or, if I was in denial and going to the therapist lifted me out of it and made me my true self? Btw, I have never actually done anything sexual with a guy.

Sorry for what you're going through

We're not counselors or doctors, but I can tell you that we've read stories about guys who conditioned their sexuality to things like watching themselves masturbate in a mirror, and certainly to material that didn't match their fundamental sexuality.

Rather than worry about labels of "What am I?" I would suggest you try  to understand how sexual conditioning (brain plasticity) works: Adolescent Brain Meets Highspeed Internet Porn - YouTube

Next, if you want to try disconnecting from the tastes that you find disturbing (even if very erotic), give your sexuality a break for a couple of months. No masturbation or fantasies of your favorite things. At the end, you might have a clearer picture. Worse case, you're no worse off.

You might find these two links interesting - but watch the above presentations first:

Are fetishes innate?

I'm straight, but attracted to transexual or gay porn. What's up? | Your Brain On Porn

Good luck.

Thanks for the quick reply.

Thanks for the quick reply.

Wouldn't it seem though, evolutionarily speaking, that what you get erections to all of the time when first starting puberty is what your orientation is? The erections are an uncontrolled response that aren't taught and are experienced by a high percentage of boys in similar circumstances, ie.. seeing a naked girl in a movie. Same thing I would think goes for what you start out masturbating to, you aren't taught this, no one even told me about it, it happened almost naturally.


you can also be influenced by things you can't consciously remember. So, for example, if nudity and arousal got linked somehow very early on, and you kept reinforcing the connection, it got stronger. But yes, early masturbation tastes can also be a good clue that later tastes are the result of chronic overconsumption (of stimulation), driving you to see novel, arousing, even anxiety-producing things. All increase the buzz.

I think it's wise to distinguish between sexual orientation and sexual tastes, with the latter being more fluid. Are Sexual Tastes Immutable?

It's possible that you can't change your particular unwanted associations, but it's also possible you can. Just know that whatever you reinforce with rewarding feelings (such as orgasm) forms stronger and more automatic circuits in your brain, and the reverse is also true. You might find The Brain That Changes Itself by Norman Doidge MD interesting in this regard. Excerpts here: DOIDGE.excerpts

Be sure to watch the slideshow if you haven't.

I guess I am not too

I guess I am not too concerned with the being naked and getting aroused part. I am way more worried that I could be gay, I have had an ocd type reaction to this I think. I was I guess trying to get a more logical perspective on my sexuality.

Your history

sounds like classic HOCD, not gayness.

But the solution is to get comfortable with uncertainty, so your brain can't drive you to seek constant reassurance and "certainty." This is the "disease" of OCD. It's like an addiction in the sense that you get a mini-neurochemical reward everytime you can see a "sign" of what you're looking for. You also get the stimulation of panic when you don't.

There is no way out by seeking reassurance, because the next wave of insecurity drives you back to the search for a "fix."

The way out is to to refuse to analyze yourself, refuse to test, become comfortable with uncertainty, and put your attention elsewhere. If you can do this for a couple of months I think you'll feel a lot clearer. But every time you "test," you reactivate the problem. Read this for more:

Exposure Therapy for HOCD?

And definitely stop all porn and all fantasizing to the unwanted stimuli. It is the overstimulation of Internet porn that drives the need for more extreme material.

Also, be prepared for a very unsettling withdrawal period, where the HOCD will get worse.

More on escalation: TOLERANCE

More on withdrawal:What does withdrawal from porn addiction look like?

Withdrawal is often worse for OCD people, so get support. Some even need temporary meds.

Ok, I get what you are saying.

I have done that on several favorite topics of mine, the constant rechecking rechecking rechecking.....In search of a fix. Once this behavior is pointed out it becomes more reasonable to stop it.

If that original therapist would have explained it that way it might have been easier to formulate an exit rather stimulate the subject to increase the reassurance seeking behavior.

I think most therapists shortchange their patients in that they do not give the patient enough intellectual credit to understand what the therapist is up to. It is a critical omission in most therapeutic paradigms. "We are going to take this course of action, and first it has to make sense to you. Are you on board?"

The truth is always your friend, so try the gay test.

There are a number of them on the web.

If you are[and I do not think you are, but, whatever] you are living about as friendly of a historical time to be gay as there has ever been. We are all bi to some degree along the continuum from zero to one hundred.

The non communication from the therapist was an exposure of her prejudice, in my mind. When an inexperienced young man comes in full of anguish over sexual identity it is not helpful to add to the anxiety.

Oh, and SERIOUSLY, explore the links provided by Marnia.

Thanks for the thoughtful

Thanks for the thoughtful responses. It's just so frustrating, because every time I clear my mind and ask myself whether I am gay or not, I can feel my brain process it and then come up with a definitive no. The problem comes in when the memory of the therapist is thrown into the mix and her response and then lack of response throws me into extreme doubt.

I feel like I can't accept my own assesment of myself, like maybe that mental calculation is coming from some kind of denial from the ego. But, if that is denial how can I be sure of any of my mental processes ever?

You can't

That's what I mean by not seeking certainty. This kind of analysis (in your post) is the disease. Sad

If you're going to stay on this forum, find something else to talk about. I used to be an enabler for guys with HOCD, but now I realize that letting them spin new arguments for their worries is feeding their OCD. The momentary reassurance doesn't last. They need to stop strengthening that brain loop.

Hope you understand. If not, read this: Exposure Therapy for HOCD?

I hear what you're saying. I

I hear what you're saying. I wasn't trying to spin any new arguments though, that's actually the only one that keeps popping up in my head for all of these years. I wouldn't say it's about certainty it's just being less confused.

The only way out is time

without analysis. This is what I hear from the men themselves.

It doesn't matter how many people tell you that this is HOCD and you're not gay. Your "gut" (brain) doesn't believe them enough to feel more than momentary reassurance. This is because you keep worrying, analyzing and seeking reassurance for your confusion.

Simply refuse to do that for several months, and I think you will feel much less confused about yoru sexual tastes. I've heard it a lot.