ScapularKid…you are very wise… That’s precisely true. You don’t know if its a phase until you’re out of it. In my experience though, I"m not quite sure what would cause a mere phase of this unfortunate type of attraction. Personally, I beleive someone who has these feelings, always has them. Some are able to suppress and some can’t. But that’s just my personal opinion no the subject. Do you have anyone in your life you can talk to who would understand?
No. My family wouldn’t understand if I said anything about this. I’ve seen the way my parents react to gay people on TV. It’s not very Christian! I just don’t think they’d understand. And it would just be ackward with the Priest at our parish because I’ve known him since I was about six or seven years old.
But based on what Courage Married said, that’s comforting to know that there are different degrees of this stuff and that we can choose to act or not. Whenever I feel attracted to another guy, it’s not the same way as when I have a crush on a girl. It’s not a long duration either, it’s just usually an instantaneous period when I think “he’s pretty good looking” and nothing else comes of it. Whenever I picture my future, it’s either I’m married to a beautiful Caholic girl, or I’m becoming a Priest. The same sex attraction never gets added into the equation. It’s like just an annoyance in the background. It dosen’t dominate my view of other guys (mostly because I don’t let it). It’s only a big deal when I make it a big deal, and as was said earlier, our society propogates that if anyone feels any type of attraction to a member of the same sex they must come out of the closet immediately (hence my earlier confusion!). I meditated on this during the Rosary last night in the fourth Sorrowful Mystery of the Carrying of the Cross. I realised that this is one of my crosses and God wouldn’t have given it to me had He not known I would be able to handle it. I’m at the stage where I just have to accept it as part of who I am.
Thank you for ascribing the attribute of wisdom to me Journeyer. I thought wisdom only came with age! Now I just have to pray that I can keep my humility after a comment like that
Hey, I have SSA and am having a hard time keeping it under control. I know what the Church teaches about this is true so I know that lifelong chastity is my vocation. But, I’m just having a struggle with staying pure and not doing things I shouldn’t, like pornography and masturbation. We all fall sometimes though, but please, you’re prayers would be appreciated. Also, it would be nice to see some people who manage they’re SSA in an admirable way so that I could have some standards to live up to.
I work with around 200 youth and they come from all kinds of situations and places in the world. I find that because of the spirit God has given me, some of them become attracted to me and if I use mens spray I have had men mention it sexually to me. My response has been and will be that firstly my thought patterns have to be clean, so I tell myself I have a choice to love or lust and I can’t have God with lust so love wins over.
I remend myself that God tells us to be with the people but NOT as the people. I have nothing to offer so if I think humanly (ssa)then the Holy Spirit will not be there. The choice is mine. Human thoughts and actions only last a little time and you need more but when satin puts these thoughts into our minds and we follow them, satan will leave when it is too late and we act upon the thoughts satan has given us. We then cry out like Peter or we fall like Judus and die.
The choice is ours. We give satan an inch it will take 1 mile. Jesus tells us that the spirit can be cast out but if it comes back it will see that the house has been cleaned and it will go out and get 7 worse than itself and IF you are not ready you will be 7 times worse than before.
Hope that helps, I have gone through that on many occasions.
Is there a nearby parish you can go to where you don’t know the priest? Maybe a nearby monastery? Also if you find someone make sure what they are saying goes by church teaching, not all priests are good at dealing with SSA issues.
Whenever I feel attracted to another guy, it’s not the same way as when I have a crush on a girl. It’s not a long duration either, it’s just usually an instantaneous period when I think “he’s pretty good looking” and nothing else comes of it. Whenever I picture my future, it’s either I’m married to a beautiful Caholic girl, or I’m becoming a Priest. The same sex attraction never gets added into the equation.
Based on this I think you are going through a “normal” phase. It is perfectly normal to see the beauty in God’s creatures. It is normal to recognize that another guy is “hot”. The fact that you said nothing else comes of it leads me to think that is all it is. A person that has a deep SSA (that would be labeled “gay”) wouldn’t be able to picture themselves married to a beautiful Catholic girl, they may see that as a possability just due to societies pressure but they wouldn’t see it as desirable. Don’t give into the mainstream media view that if you are at all attracted to a guy that means you are gay. It’s funny, the mainstream media makes it out that if a “gay” person is attracted to a girl they are just hidding, fooling themselves, etc. but if a “straight” person is attracted to a guy then that means they are “gay”. Typical double standard. It is normal to see the beauty in everyone around you. It’s what you do with those feelings that make you what you are.
It is a struggle for everyone. I don’t know of any Courage face-to-face groups in the Towson area but there is one in the DC area. If you are not already a member I encourage joining the online discussion group hosted by Courage. Go to the following web page to find it.
It is a lot easier to deal with these issues with support from others then deal with them alone. People may fall at times but it important to remember that God can forgive anything and as long as you repent, resolve to never do it again and go to confession you will be forgiven. Courage has been a huge help to me. I highly recommend it to others that deal with a SSA and want to live within Church teaching.
I’ve had SSA. It was pretty bad in my mid-teens. But now it’s gotten much better. And I really hope that it will go away sometime, because I don’t like having it. If it’s my cross to bear the rest of my life, then may God’s Will be done.
Frequent Confession and Holy Communion helps A LOT. I strongly encourage those with any sort of affliction to deal with it with those Sacraments. I’m glad this thread was started. Maybe it will eventually become a new sub-forum.
Sub-forums, like all things Catholic, develop slowly and oganically. If there is enough sustained activity on any one given topic to merit a sub-forum, the administration will consider it. We’ll definitely keep an eye out to see how things progress!
May God Bless You Abundantly,
It is so great to discover that we can actually improve our ability to deal with temptation and live holy lives. Thank God!
And it is so great to see so many helpful and holy strivers here!
I am also a striver and these are some strategies which have helped me:
Prayer (of course) but in particular the Rosary.
I have found the scriptural rosary or some guided rosary with meditations to help me mentally put myself in the mystery as it happens (e.g., finding of Jesus in the Temple, imagining you are there watching the event).
After a while, as you get used to pondering the meditations, you can pray the rosary without a book or pictures of the scenes. But whenever I have a day when I am distracted in prayer, I go back to using them to help focus my mind, or I pray the rosary along with an audio CD. EWTN has some good rosary audios you can download for free. Let me know and I can find you links.
Devotion to Saint Joseph. St Teresa of Avila always recommended a devotion to St Joseph, and many people do not realize that St Joseph actually appeared briefly to the children at Fatima on the day the Miracle of the Sun happened. I just mention that to say that this is not my idea, but very much encouraged by various others of much more repute. Personally I just figure St Joseph is the best human father ever, hand-picked by God Himself, so if you need some fatherly guidance from another human being toward a holy life you simply absolutely cannot do better than having a talk with Saint Joseph.
Chaplet of Divine Mercy. Always always always good.
Practicing self-discipline of the mind. Learning how to avoid impurity immediately in its earliest stage by calmly (A) turning away from impure thoughts, while (B) turning toward some thought or activity which is holy or leads toward some wholesome God-approved goal.
Assuring ourselves that we can overcome impurity by remembering:
1- that we are all sinners and will be tempted sometimes,
2- that being the case, we should not be too surprised when we are tempted,
3- God the Father in Christ and the Holy Spirit has made grace available to us through the sacraments and many other channels as well to resist and overcome absolutely any temptation. We’re not perfect yet but it is always POSSIBLE to resist temptation,
4- studying ourselves and our own patterns of thought and behavior can be very enlightening.
Just one personal example: I find I have to avoid coffee for up to 12 hours before I go to sleep. If I don’t, my mind is too active as I am trying to relax and sleep and then impure thoughts can seem overwhelming. On those occasions when I do drink coffee too soon before bedtime, I sometimes have to get myself up out of a comfortable bed and kneel down to pray even though I don’t at all want to, just to move the focus of my thoughts away from the flesh. I just give this example because I think there will be times when we all simply have to do something penitential to keep our minds in and on the Kingdom. It’s worth it!
Sorry for going on so long - hope this helps somebody.
Here’s the link to the Courage Online forum. It’s useful for those without a Courage meeting nearby or for those who might hesitate going to a meeting for certain reasons.
It’s past midnight. These past nights and tomorrow night again have been and will be so busy. But I wanted to take time to read the posts and express appreciation to those who have offered advice and support…couragemarried, littleone, and everyone else. I also wanted to offer some encouragement to those who have posted seeking advice and support. In recent weeks, I had the experience of meeting guys in Catholic fellowships…some whom I had liked and had no idea they had ssa. I mention this because it helps to know that you’re your not alone. That many other have gone through and carried or carry that cross alongside you…sometimes without our even knowing.
I hope to write a bit more and share experiences soon after things slow down at work and as my schedule clears up… hopefully in day or so. And a discussion of what has worked for each of us and what hasn’t worked would be good.
I was confirmed into the Roman Catholic Church a month ago, after a three-year journey that culminated in a God-given conviction that it was time to walk away from my 49-year Protestant heritage.
Over the last month, I’ve found it to be VERY true that the sacraments of Confession and the Eucharist are tremendous helps in managing my SSA. Gradually, I find myself practicing chastity and purity for longer and longer periods. I still have a long way to go, but I have more hope as a Catholic, than I ever did as a Protestant. God be thanked.
Gradually, I find myself practicing chastity and purity for longer and longer periods. I still have a long way to go, but I have more hope as a Catholic, than I ever did as a Protestant. God be thanked.
That is the way many people deal with habitual sin. Some people can give it up right away. Others it takes awhile with falling and getting back up over and over again. The key is to continue the struggle and keep getting back up, resolving to not do it again and go to confession. It’s when you get discouraged, and think that things can’t turn around that problems start to creep in.
A number of the guys in the Courage Online had at one time or another expressed a desire to chat with other members or those with ssa who struggle for chastity. The chat feature of COL hasnt been active I think for some reason.
So it might be a good idea to bring up here if there are readers who are interested in giving their contact id’s on Yahoo Instant messenger perhaps. Or can some recommend other options?
One guy here mentioned the desire to chat with guys who have successfully mnaged their ssa. I know this has helped me. I recently chatted with someone with ssa whose experience differed from mine so it helped give me insight and hope.
By the way, this is my yahoo Instant messenger id: col_benjamin
Hi again everyone,
Thought I’d post a personal sharing while I found the time and the will :). I had been attending the Courage chapter in my area for awhile being new here. But presently I’ve been limiting my attendance because I go to some Opus Dei recollecions which happen at the same night the Courage meetings are held.
Being new to this state, Virginia, has been a source of some temptation. But fellowship in church, with fellow Courage members, attending mass, weekly confession, weekly evenings of recollection with the Opus Dei and other things have helped in general.
For many years I had struggled with masturbation. But since attending Courage and even some exgay groups, this has subsided at times. And at other times, things seemed worse. Though the periods of sobriety have been increasing. For several months last year, since joining the Opus Dei, I had been happily sober and had not much desire for masturbation. But moving to this new place has provided some strain and temptation in this society.
Presently, I am experiencing some sobriety. And I hope that this continues. I just dont want to be stuck up in this cycle. I think I often, for one, admire and perhaps envy men who are attractive and seem more superior in their appearance or physical attributes than myself. I sometimes have the longing to feel accepted by such men. Hence the attraction…looking at people on the streets or elsewhere and at times in the recent past looking at not very good places on the internet. Stress doesnt help either.
I was reading a pamphlet recently on sexual sobriety byFr. Emmerich Vogt. He’s apparently with Sexaholics Anonymous and writes similarly to what Fr. Jack on COL has been mentioning for some time. Anyway, one thing that Fr. Vogt mentions, in a nutshell, is that there’s nothing wrong to being attracted to other men…it’s lusting that’s the main issue. Will try to write more on this later.
Anyway, to write more honestly on daily struggles later. Hope to read more from others as well. Got to get to bed for now.
Just one comment about sharing in this forum. First remember that Catholic Answers is a group anyone can join. Second remember that kids 13 and over can join. Sharing what worked and what hasn’t worked is fine, talking about things in a real general format is fine, but going into details about sexual struggles, etc. should be reserved to other environments like personal email, IM, and COL.
I just wanted to pop in and give a warm welcome to the new CAF members! I hope you enjoy CAF. I have learned a lot since joining and it has really helped me on my spiritual journey.
t have SSA but one of my best friends does. My friend left the Church due to her disagreement with the Churchs teaching on SSA but I pray she will one day return.
I want you to know you are in my prayers.
I pray that this thread is based on God and His desire that we love one another and not based on ssa as an option of life.
Jesus tells us to be with those of the world but as those of the world.
we will always get these flirting fantacies but they will never take over our minds unless we allow that spirit to manifest. I work with around 200 youth and some of the girls wear too low cut dresses I have had some of the male tell me it’s a pitty I’m straight!!! some times the girls takl about me sexually but I am alert, and stay away from that.
I know that satan is the one putting these situations in front of me to persued me over to the other side. But I know that is not god’ly.
Satan can only win what we allow it to. we are built in God’s image male or female. Be strong brothers life is not a game to play around with or we will miss the beat and take the wrong road.
I pray for courage for you to follow the Lord as He has made you.
“Choos you this day who you will follow, as for me and my family we will follow the Lord” (Joshua)
Nobody has ever suggested that God isn’t the center of this thread. Honestly do you think a person with SSA that didn’t have following God’s commandments as a priority would even join Courage. There are many Christian-based groups out there besides Courage that promote things that go against Church teaching, and a person that didn’t agree with those teachings could easily join those groups. For those that don’t know them, the following list is the list of the goals of Courage.
The following five goals of Courage were created by the members
themselves when Courage was founded. The goals are read at
the start of each meeting and practiced by every member in daily
Live chaste lives in accordance with the Roman Catholic
Church’s teaching on homosexuality. (Chastity)
Dedicate ones life to Christ through service to others,
spiritual reading, prayer, meditation, individual spiritual
direction, frequent attendance at Mass, and the frequent reception
of the sacraments of Reconciliation and Holy Eucharist.
(Prayer and Dedication)
Foster a spirit of fellowship in which all may share
thoughts and experiences, and so ensure that no one will have
to face the problems of homosexuality alone. (Fellowship)
Be mindful of the truth that chaste friendships are not
only possible but necessary in a chaste Christian life and in
doing so provide encouragement to one another in forming and
sustaining them. (Support)
Live lives that may serve as good examples to others. (Good Example)