Please forgive me for sending yet another huge letter. I have a problem that I simply cannot solve alone, and since you have already helped me in the past, I was hoping you could do the same now.
In my previous letter, I told you that I was straight. I wish my sexual orientation was as easy to understand as that. I suffer from O.C.D., and am currently undergoing therapy to cure my phobias, as well as my obsession with cleanliness. But it appears that my sexual orientation is being affected by my condition.
A few years ago, I started having sexual desires for members of the same sex. I ended up finding a furry with whom I became friends with and, sooner than most, I started having sex with him. It felt fantastic, and I was happy.
However, some time after I did it, I started obsessing about the fact that God would punish me and that I would end up in Hell. I went to the Church to confess, I talked to him, and everything was apparently over. But then I would come back, we would have sex again, I would feel guilty, and the cycle would endure for an eternity.
I later discovered that he was talking about our relationship with others, a clear invasion of my privacy, as I told him I'd rather keep it a secret, and I ended up with him for good.
But now, and despite my therapist saying it was part of my O.C.D, I feel an urge to find another male with which I can be happy with. But I am afraid the same thing will happen here, especially because I don't know what my sexual orientation is anymore. I am very confused at the moment, and this confusion is crippling my attempts to get cured. I also like girls, but a traumatic event involving a girl in the past make me become afraid of dating a girl.
So, am I bisexual or am I just obsessed about having a relationship with a male?
* * *
Hi, again, C-Ratchet,
Okay, I don’t know where you found your therapist, but your sexual orientation and your OCD have nothing to do with each other.
Obsessing about cleanliness and obsessing over your guilt about having sex with a guy ARE indicative of OCD. So, let’s get one thing straight here right away: You are NOT going to Hell because you are gay or bi. That’s baloney contrived by religious zealots who are closed-minded about different forms of sexual expression.
Put that worry aside, okay?
Now, you really have two separate problems here: your OCD and coming to terms with your sexuality. Obsessive compulsive behavior is something that is never fully cured but can be managed successfully with good treatment and medication. It’s important that, once you find a treatment that works for you, you keep it up for the remainder of your life because, if you stop, the OCD will return.
Where OCD CAN affect your sex life is in your performance. It usually does so in a negative way. People with untreated OCD may have trouble being aroused, may become easily dissatisfied with a partner, or might even come to fear sex (clearly not a problem when you were having satisfying sex with that guy). So, what your therapist might be referring to when it comes to the relationship between OCD and sex is the situation with your former girlfriend. You had an unpleasant experience with her that has led you to, perhaps, obsess with the idea that sex with any girl will now lead to another bad experience.
Even if that scenario is true, your OCD would not make you gay. If you are truly straight, you would not find sex with a guy very pleasant, it would not make you feel “fantastic,” and you would not be happy about it. So, I believe that OCD may be keeping you away from girls but your true sexual orientation (i.e., you are either gay or bi) leads to your attraction to guys.
I hope that alleviates your confusion. Remember to keep your OCD and your sexual orientation separate; they are two different things. OCD may affect your sexual performance, but it doesn’t turn you gay (or straight, for that matter).
I’m uncomfortable with your therapist giving you that impression, and I think it would be a good idea for you to get a second opinion from another professional in the field. In the meantime, before pursuing another relationship, it would be a good idea to get your OCD under control. Focus on you, first, and then worry about a new relationship later.
Good luck! Bear Hugs!
9/11/2013 03:33:05 am
Please forgive my outrage, but what sort of professional like a therapist would tell someone that their sexual orientation is being changed by OCD? It is hard enough struggling to accept ones sexuality without professionals meant to help giving confusing advice that makes it seem like there is something fundamentally wrong with not being straight. >.> If deep down (underneath the feelings caused by religious indoctrination) you truly feel happy or fulfilled seeking romantic involvement with someone, then it should feel right to you. It is really sad that people go to such lengths to snoop into people's personal lives when it is no concern of theirs—trying to make you feel "bad" or guilty for being the way you are. It really makes no sense to me...
9/14/2013 10:15:27 pm
Those were precisely my thoughts. Despite the fact that she is supposed to help me, to me it seems that she takes more control over my life than exactly help.
9/13/2013 01:51:35 am
Before we jump all over the therapist, let's remind ourselves that we are only hearing what the writer is saying about them. They could have gotten what was being said entirely out of context.
9/14/2013 10:20:42 pm
I salute you for trying to see both sides of a story before jumping to conclusions, Max Goof, as I believe that it is the right thing for anyone to do.
9/13/2013 03:10:17 am
9/14/2013 10:24:17 pm
Thank you for answering my letter once more Papabear! I'm sorry that I had to drag this confusing topic all the way here in order to seek answers.
9/15/2013 03:47:21 am
I wish to emphasize to all my readers that they should never apologize for writing to me with their questions. The entire purpose of this column is to answer questions, so if everyone was fearful of writing to ol' Papabear that would be the end of the column! So, C-Ratchet, again, no apologies needed.
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