I recently came out to my parents that I was gay but felt horrible afterwards. Even though they were very accepting and loving about the whole thing. However, I have a gay porn addiction so maybe that’s what’s causing my stress and grief. Also when I came out last week a new intrusive thought occurred to me that has never happened before and that question was am I w pedophile. I know I am not because I am not attracted to children and have never been, but my mind keeps trying to convince itself that it is and it’s causing seriously grief and depression. I’m trying to figure out if it’s ocd, shame that I’m Gay, or shame because of my gay porn addiction. It’s just extremely frustrating because now as in the last week I have been avoiding children and associating children with unwanted terrifying thoughts and I can’t stop it. I feel like it’s causing extreme grief, stress, and anxiety. I’m trying to figure it all out and don’t know what to do. Just to reiterate these thoughts did not start happening until I came out that I liked guys. Maybe it’s extreme ocd that there’s something wrong with me. What do you think?
Hi Aiden! First of all, thank you for sharing your question with us. It takes great courage. If I understand your question right, you came out to your parents recently, and since then, you have intrusive thoughts about being attracted to children. You also talk about a gay porn addiction. All of this, is very stressful for you and you are trying to find a cause for those thoughts and feelings, that were not there before.
I would like to start with some questions for you. Take your time to answer them and think about all of this. When you came out to your parents, did you feel like you were telling them that you did something wrong? Why did you come out to them? What was the context? Is there anything else in your life that’s stressing you out? Why do you think your mind is trying to convince itself that it likes children? Did you ever think you might like children ever before? How often do you watch gay porn? Is your consumption of pornography a cause of distress? Are you missing out on other things in your life because you are watching porn? Do you have urges to watch porn? Do you experience OCD with other topics then this? Do you feel there is something wrong with you? What would that be?
Let’s start with your coming out. It can be a really stressful moment. It’s really great that your parents were accepting and loving, so you can take a load of stress off your shoulders. But you still talk about feeling like there is something wrong with you. I would like to say to you that being gay is far from being wrong! Love is an amazing feeling and you are allowed to live guys if you want too. There is no shame to be felt. Feel strong about it, be happy and live it to the fullest.
About the pornography. Being addicted to it is a really strong word. Think about the questions that I asked you before and evaluate if it is really an addiction. You are allowed to watch pornography. There is nothing wrong with that. Just remember that it is not reality.
Finally, let’s talk about those intrusive thoughts. What are they exactly? I am not the best person to help you through those. I would suggest to you to consult a psychologist / sexologue to talk about it, find why you developed those thoughts and see what you can do about it. Are you avoiding children because you are scared of what you are going to think? Are you scared of doing something you don’t want to? Are you scared of these thoughts? Thinks about this! It’s already a big step to talk about it here. In the meantime, try breathing exercises (app like kardia) to release some of the stress.
If you have other questions, don’t hesitate to right us again!
Take care of yourself!
Valérie, bachelière en sexologie