SSA - Should I Tell People About It


I have made my first confession and during it confessed impure thoughts associated with SSA

I have NOT had a SS Relationship - and don’t want to - only relationship was 14 years ago - a long term girlfiend , i was living in sin for which i am sorry too (who i loved and still do) . At the moment i am practicing celibacy but since relationship breakdown have had troubles with acts of “self impurity”

Is it wrong to keep this side of myself secret from people i know - even deny it - i think i have even denied it myself

I only have a couple of close friends and they have always been anti-SS (they are non-believers) - they may well desert me for a start if i own up to this , there’s a lot bigotry in the world

I have always hoped to be married (hetero) with possibility of children , and still am attracted to opposite sex , but this side of me prevents me trying to get close to anyone - consequentally i am extremely shy , in any case what woman would want me knowing i have these attractions (now past 40)

Should i carry this cross secretly?

I have started going to church this year after 40 years and have confessed to a priest the impure thoughts etc, but wonder if it is even wrong to keep this secret from my brothers and sisters in Christ (some have noticed i am single and suggested i become a priest!!! perhaps i owe it to them to let them know)

I pray regularly whenever any temptation occurs and the good news is prayer has certainly helped in that i am at present staying away from “impure acts on self” for the longest period ever - months now , my intent is to stay celibate forever unless marriage - please pray for me!


I beleive that we live in a world where nothing is personal anymore. I’m as guilty as everyone, but we live in a culture where sins are now broadcast on our arms. We tell people way too much.

I would keep it to yourself.

Having said that, I want you to know how much I admire you. God will reward you more for being able to win the battle with your self than any of us.

We will always continue to pray for you! We love you and God Bless.


Honestly, it’s no one’s business but yours and your confessor’s. You are not lying to anyone by not telling them, and you don’t have to admit to it if you don’t want to.

And I honestly feel that you can talk to your confessor about it if you should cave to lustful thoughts, but the attraction in and of itself is not a sin, anymore than my attraction when an attractive man walks by who isn’t my husband. Yeah, I notice him, then I push him out of my brain and don’t think twice about it. Same principle applies here.


Bless you both for your kind and supportive comments

I think keeping the SSA to myself may have over the years contributed to my (extreme) shyness , but that isn’t a sin either in itself either , just can be a bit of an obstacle in some social situations … but i think you are right i have confessed to our Lord God and i give thanks for his mercy

And … many thanks for your prayers


I agree with the previous posters–it is no one else’s business but your own and your confessor’s. Actually, I believe that if you tell people about it some people may encourage you to “experiment” in that area of your life and lead you into sin.

If you do get into a relationship with a woman that may be serious enough for marriage, she will need to know before you get married.

God bless you for fighting this fight against Satan! Stay strong and keep fighting the temptations! Prayers for you!


It’s not wrong for you to keep this a secret, and you are under no obligation to let anyone know about something this personal.

Are you truly attracted to the opposite sex? Could you fully love a woman without wishing she were a man? If so, then I don’t think you would have to tell her about your attraction to the same sex. Straight men when they marry still struggle with the attraction to other women, they don’t have to tell their wives this.

Of course if you are deceiving yourself and wouldn’t really be as attracted to a woman as you would to a man, then you should tell her so that she can decide if she wants you on those terms.


That sort of information is no one’s business. Your friends don’t need to know about every temptation you struggle with. And the same is true about well meaning people who might pester you about a vocation to the priesthood. I suppose I can’t fault someone for asking you if you’ve ever considered it. But you really don’t owe anyone an explanation. If you want to answer such suggestions, you could always say, “I am doing my best to follow God’s Will in my life, and at this time, I don’t believe he is calling me in that direction.” Another reason for not spreading your particular struggle around is that if you do end up marrying someday and having children, you probably won’t want to worry about who might spill the beans to your kids. Even if you don’t marry/have kids, it’s still something you might wish you kept it to yourself in the future, depending on where life takes you. Not that you shouldn’t turn to the right places for support. Your confessor & would be good places to stick with, at least for now.

Of course, you also shouldn’t be ashamed of yourself for struggling with SSA. The reason not to tell people isn’t because of shame, but because it probably won’t end up being helpful to you in the long run. While I believe that generally, our issues with chastity are best left private, I think there are some situations in which it can be appropriate for some to share. For example, I’ve heard people on Catholic radio talk about their experience overcoming SSA. If someday, you find yourself in a position of it being beneficial to not be so private about it, it is easier to let the information out then, then to tell people too soon and regret it.


If you feel the need for some support, you might look into the Courage Apostolate. It is a group of Catholics who struggle with SSA, but strive for chastity. While I agree that this is a private matter, sometimes it helps us to talk to others who struggle with the same tendencies towards sin, as long as those people will lead us away from that sin. God bless you.


I would say that for now you should keep it to yourself. I can tell you already that the devil is going to be after you. He is going to be attacking you from every direction because you have abandoned sin and have come to the Church. This is a mighty cross for you to bear and you are a courageous person for taking it on. Even though I suggested you keep this quiet for now…there may come a time in the future when you feel strengthened enough in Christ to share your story with others as a testimony to God’s faithfulness.
God bless you!


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