My gay experience (John)

I am a Seventh-day Adventist with same-sex attractions (SSA). Most would label me gay, even though I am now celibate.

I am a second son. My father was rarely home from the time I was born until I was a young adult. He typically worked six to seven days a week, often staying out all night on the job when I was a little boy. Later, he became an alcoholic and was sometimes gone for days at a time, binge-drinking. My father had an ill temper. He was usually emotionally hurtful, and occasionally physically violent. He was almost always angry about something my mother or one of his children did. Sometimes, when very intoxicated, he would beat my mother. He attacked my brother and me as well. If I were to use one word to describe my feelings when my father was around, it would be fear. When Dad came home my heart started pounding.

I was one of six children. My father preferred to do things with the family, not me individually. However, I remember he once took my brother and me fishing. Once he threw a baseball with us. Other than that, our relationship revolved around work. My father was a control freak who constantly yelled out orders for us to follow. He was big, strong, and ready to punish. Consequently, we rarely disobeyed. I was an obedient son due to fear of punishment. As far back as I can remember my father never hugged me, not even once. When I was little, he did like to chase me down and pinch my legs hard until I cried. That was our only touching. He never told me he loved me. He did not make time for me. As a boy I was frightened of my father and consequently of other men and even many boys. As an adolescent I hated my father. I can remember always saying I did not want to be like my dad.

I had a loving relationship with my mother. She did the best she could raising six children essentially by herself. I also had a very close relationship with my brothers and sisters. We all banded together emotionally for support in coping with the stress caused by living with my father.

As you can see, my life experience lends itself nicely to an environmental cause of a homosexual orientation. Yet, I believe innate factors played a role as well. One evidence of this is that I had two brothers who were raised in a similar environment. Both of them are heterosexual. There were significant differences as one brother was four years older and the other 14 years younger than me. Nevertheless, our environmental experience was similar, especially our relationships with our father. Apparently, for some unknown reason, some boys are inherently susceptible to being gay. As the right etiological constellation of innate and experiential variables come together, a gay orientation develops.


My gay experience (John) — 4 Comments

  1. I just want to say how much I appreciated reading the story by John Edwards: “Homosexuality, Politics and my gay experience.” I could relate to so much of it on many levels. I thought it was wonderfully written and I aspire to be able to contribute something as effective as that in the near future. ‘John’ thank you for sharing. May God continue to bless you and guide you until He returns to take us home.

  2. Thanks, John, for sharing your story. It is meaningful and well told. I agree with your observations. Genetics leave the gate unlatched and the environment pushes it open. Some may have the genetic potential but circumstances of life never move them in that direction. Others may have all the conditions that would make them gay, but never have any inclination at all. One popular area of studies in psychology is called “imprinting”. This is what is involved. I recall experiences when I was pre pubertal and around puberty that I believe were strongly influential, but I imagine someone with no predisposition wouldn’t have been fazed by them.

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