Monday, May 28, 2007

Still here...but feeling wigged-out!


I'm still discouraged, confused, befuddled... This has been a tough period. I'm still not happy with myself or where I'm going, or why I'm still blogging...

***

A week or so ago, Will came into my office unannounced. I was buried in work. Though I was happy to see him after several months, I didn't have time for him. We hugged, and I didn't feel the vibes from him like before. That was a "good sign" I thought. The time apart was working it's magic and we were moving on in our respective lives. I told him "I don't have time to talk right now", and I promised I'd get back with him... but I didn't. Road trips and life got in the way and now he's gone for the summer at a job away from here. I feel bad. I've never, ever done this before. When he's wanted to talk - I've been there for him. He's been there for me. But that opportunity to reconnect slipped through our hands and I allowed it to happen - and I feel guilty.


Fast forward to yesterday:


I thought I wouldn't see Tim again until the end of the summer. But there he was sitting in Sacrament Meeting with his mom, smiling his usual smile that makes me all wiggly inside. I couldn't figure out why he had come home. We have this continuing very weird relationship where I've told him he can't come by the house (I need to tell Will this as well) - so we meet in church - in public - in front of anyone's view - if only they knew what they were viewing.


After the meetings, I had to meet with the Bishop on a matter and the YM president on another matter regarding my son. My family went home in the other car. He waited. I took care of my church business as most everyone else left for the day. And he waited - for me - for us to have a chance to be together again.


This sounds all so goofy. I didn't plan any of this. After our very long and heart-felt full-body embrace (that we've come to expect of each other), Tim told me to sit on the couch there in the foyer. So, against my better judgment, worrying what others might think, wondering if my wife really did go home in the other car, he began sharing with me very personal feelings and thoughts and concerns about his life, about his future, about his prospects of marriage, etc. He was emotional and distraught. There was, without a doubt, a spiritual connection. As we spoke I couldn't help myself as I began rubbing his arm and then his leg. He didn't pull away from me. He never does. He returned to gesture as we spoke. In the end, we stood and hugged. I kissed him on the neck and told him I "loved" him. I then kissed him on his cheek and then his chin. He held me. He wasn't repulsed. There was no repulsive behavior here. We were two very dear friends having a special, non-sexual and spiritual connection - in the foyer of the Church in plain view of everyone.


We held each other for some time. I started getting really wiggly inside now. Triggers were going off all over the place... This was getting weird...


I then kissed him on the lips! I didn't care anymore. I wanted him and I felt in his loving way, he wanted me...


Okay... that last part about the lips-thing didn't happen. Got ya goin' though, right? :) But everything else did happen. And I'm all discombobulated. I can't think straight. I can't think about anything else. I know in one sense I have a horrible "crush" on him... I'm a happily married man with kids. I shouldn't be doing this. But, on the other hand, I didn't do anything but listen to a friend reveal his soul to me. What was I to do? He was obviously there to "meet me" and wanted very much to spend some personal time with me to discuss these things. Was I to say - "not now, not ever?" I couldn't do it. I didn't want to feel more guilt (thinking of my shrugging off Will's visit)... So I listened, and we touched, and we continued our weird multi-generational same-sex more-than-close-yet-hard-to-properly-describe friendship in the open before all that want to see and interpret what they will to see us.


Some may raise the appropriateness of this continuing relationship. I, for one, am first in line! My wife is second! So get behind us, okay? I beat myself over this! What am I thinking? I may not stop myself next time... I may really kiss him on the lips (because I'm finding myself thinking about it now for real) and then what? He has no clue of what's going on inside me. And that's not fair to him. I'm feeling things and he doesn't know. Or does he? How can he not by this point? But, the point is, I don't tell him that part of my wigging-out inside every time I'm near him, or that I catch myself "dreaming" about him, etc... It's wrong, it's icky... it's very inconvenient. But, this is getting close to the edge of me freakin' out. I do love him. Is that wrong? I want to help him, be there for him, continue our confidant relationship. But should I?


Should I even be blogging of such things? I am seriously considering deleting this post.


What is going on here? Why do I desire more? I posted on GIMBLE's blog recently about the need to cuddle and snuggle "in the open" and that touchy-feely guys are fine in showing affection - I encourage it openly!!! I've preached it from the pulpit and in the classroom and privately numerous times. It is a battle-cry, a personal mission of mine to break down these cultural barriers we have as men - where we cannot openly express our emotions, and touch each other, caressing each other's arms as we speak, or rubbing each other's legs, or embracing and kissing each other. Why not? I've been on a personal and solemn crusade of sorts since my mission to do just that! And I've helped many a straight guy come to terms with his emotions and feelings by teaching him to open up, to not be afraid, to cry, to hug, to touch, to be connected in very personal bonding ways. And I've seen miracles happen as this touching and embracing, this feeling and bonding has occurred. It has changed lives. The spirit has been there!


And yet, it has now led me to this? To feeling feelings I shouldn't be feeling? And doing so at Church? And behind my wife and kids' back?


In one way, I feel like I was there for a purpose to uniquely help him through this uniquely pressing time in his life. I did so in my unique touch-friendly way, and he has come to expect it and even request it, never pulling away from me, even encouraging me on... in his very loving and dear friendship way. But in another way, I feel as we continue, it will be harder to hold back, even in the foyer. Now it's getting weirder and weirder...


***


I've recently pulled back from my wife in these last few weeks, and she could feel me drifting. I didn't tell her about my encounter at church (dishonesty? or selective telling of the truth? she didn't ask why I was delayed coming home and I didn't volunteer - is that dishonest?) - I don't think she even saw him there. She wanted me close to her last night. The only way I could do "it" was with ill-placed thoughts - of him!


I feel so confused. The cycle continues. It doesn't get better. I don't change. This is the same story - I'm sure anyone who's read my sagas before are rolling their eyes in boring disgust and mumbling to themselves as they read this: "I can't believe he's doing it again!" - only I'm getting more and more connected into a cycle that may be spiraling out of control... This is getting weird, wrongfully weird.


***


My "interview" with L was published yesterday. I feel exposed and confused over that, too. Here I am revealing intimate details of my personal life in my own blog and I feel fairly okay with that - because that is what this blog is supposed to serve - an avenue for me to express these thoughts so that I can stay "true to the faith" and hopefully learn something and figure this whole thing out... But, with L publishing my "story" on NORTHERN LIGHTS makes me feel "out there" for all to view.

L referred to me being "real". I don't know what that really means. I mean, I am who I am... I tend to say it as I see it, as I feel it. I tend to show my blemishes and warts and all - in hopes that I can see through them and understand the next steps I should take, not necessarily the ones hormones are driving me to take.


This is who I am. I've accepted my attractions and temptations. I recognize them as part of me. I'm no longer confused by them being what they are. However, I'm a very confused and wigged-out soul right now.


Any advice before I go off the deep end?

16 comments:

Jacob Mathews said...

There is a difference between healthy touching and the insatiable longing to connect physically with a man we are attracted to. I kissed a guy at a party a few months ago. I wish I had not done that. I should never have allowed it to happen, but I did. You need to put that fire in your body and mind out permanently. Tell your friend you need to stop beeing so close to him, since you are too attracted to him. Honesty is the only way out before you get into more trouble.

Kengo Biddles said...

For the benefit of your dear readers, Beck, I'll say this:

Kissing of any sort, if it's turning you on should be a NO-NO.

If, however, your feeling is of genuine brotherly closeness, that's something else. I recall fondly my arab "brother" in France who gave me a strong kiss on each cheek (something that RARELY happens between men) to signify his love for me, as a dear, dear friend.

I agree with Jacob, "You need to put that fire in your body and mind out permanently."

Whether you tell him that you need to stop being so close is your own decision, but I do think that you need to re-evaluate your relationship with Tim.

And for my other comments, well, I'll e-mail you.

Sean said...

Oh, my dear friend. i agree with jacob and kengo in this area as well.

i understand that hurt that it will cause within you, but i know the hurt will be greater if you set aside the covanents you made with your wife.

be well my friend.

Beck said...

Jacob: Thanks for your caution. I'm not going to do it. I just would like to. There's a difference. I just hope I can keep remembering the diffference.

KB: The personal line that I crossed, that self-imposed boundary that I refused to approach was crossed this time. That's why I feel so icky inside. I didn't really "do" anything, but I wanted to... it was turning me on. I know this. My rational side knows this. My spiritual side knows this. My alter-ego side says "go for it". This battle inside me is real. I appreciate your NO-NOs. We are dear, dear friends. That's it... Your task, whether you choose to accept it or not, is to keep reminding me of that.

SEAN: Your thoughts of covenants correlate with those of mine. Don't worry... I'm not about to throw them away. I may have desired for a moment to do so when I was in his arms kissing him, but I'm not going to do that... I think... :)

santorio said...

your wife didn't see him? i doubt it.

he doesn't know what is going on in your mind? i doubt it.

my two bits is that you and tim should tell each other more or less what is going on in your respective minds, and how you both plan to keep the fire controlled.

Beck said...

Santorio:

If my wife saw him, she didn't make note of it to me. And she definitely didn't see us together. And believe me, if she had, she would have said something about it.

If he DOES know what is going on inside my mind, he has not let me know. And if he does, why does he allow me to advance? Why does he not pull back or be repulsed? That seems to be the natural response, does it not?

Distance is the number one fire-containment methodology here. Being a few states away from each other helps. I understand your advice. Others have given the same to talk with him about "what's going on" inside me, inside him. I'm just afraid it is one-sided and I'm blowing it out of proportion... and yet afraid that if it isn't one-sided, and he is reciprocating in some fashion for his own same attractions, then I ask myself... "then what"... but I doubt this second alternative. I'm the one that makes the "advances" here, never him... though he awaits them in open arms.

Though I can't imagine it of him, who thinks that of me?

Abelard Enigma said...

why does he allow me to advance? Why does he not pull back or be repulsed?

Thinking back when I was his age, if I had a Beck in my life who always gave me big hugs when we met, I would have gladly accepted them, even expected them. They might have even aroused me, but I would have rationalized it away as brotherly love.

I guess what I'm trying to say, maybe he is fighting his own demons. He may not even realize it yet (or admit it to himself). In other words, it may not be as one sided as you think it is. Being in denial at his age is certainly nothing new, as both you and I can attest to. I'm not suggesting he is a closet 6 on the Kinsey scale. But, maybe he is a 1, 2, or 3.

You really need to get past this and quit berating yourself so much. So, you made a mistake and crossed over a personal boundary. Look at this as a learning experience and figure out a way to fortify your boundary so that you don't make that mistake again - and then move on.

You are a good person who sometimes makes mistakes - join the club. The meeting of imperfect MoHo's will now come to order ...

Beck said...

Thanks, Abe... I needed that! :)

I really don't know where he is on the Kinsey scale. I just know he expects them from me and he doesn't seem to mind my "advances" in the "brotherly love" category. I am sure that's what he thinks of them... I just can't imagine otherwise. I don't even hope otherwise. There is no plan for hope otherwise.

I'm just moving on... :)

gentlefriend said...

The fact that you are talking about it says a lot about where you are. I agree with the above suggestions. I certainly have pushed the envelope at times and then saw where I was headed (and part of me really, really wanted to go there) but then realized that what I wanted most was not what I wanted NOW.

You may not be talking to him about your arousal but you are talking to us. You seem clearheaded about all of this. You recognize that your hormones are raging. That is not bad. You are not bad. I don't see you fighting the suggestions to learn from this situation. Please don't wallow in it. This only stirs up the hormones or sets off punitive guilt feelings. Neither will help you get to where you want to go. Set reasonable physical limits in your mind and move forward. Please don't stop helping your friends. Just control the context and be cautious where you touch. We men are blessed with an early warning system. If you start getting an erection, stop touching and suggest that you both talk in another setting. You don't have to explain why.

Beck said...

"Please don't stop helping your friends. Just control the context and be cautious where you touch."

I like that... I don't want to STOP being friends and helping them. They come to me for advice and input into their lives. They share things that I'm sure they don't share with others. Since I'm so "mature and experienced", I guess I offer them good counsel and advice in return, otherwise, why do they keep coming back? For the hug? For the kiss?

I know the limits. I just need to abide by them. Thanks. Gentlefriend, for the reminder. And thanks for putting my situation in context. I need that!

gentlefriend said...

Just a suggestion: I always sit face to face when I counsel someone. This would take away the temptation to rub legs and arms (Unless you are really close, which I don't advise). I sit close enough so that I can lean forward and briefly touch the person's leg for reassurance and support. Sometimes, if the person is weeping, I will hold his hand. Depending on how well I know the person, we usually begin and end with a hug. I also believe in touching as a way of giving support and expressing caring.

If he asks you to sit next to him on the couch, perhaps you could pull up a chair and sit across from him. If even there you get aroused, suggest that you take a walk and talk. Get that blood out of your crotch and into your legs.

Beck said...

Gentlefriend: I appreciate your advice here, but I'm not conducting a Bishop's interview, okay? I've served in two bishoprics and understand what you are saying... this is a very close friendship we are talking about here. Though I understand your point of view, I don't think it's applicable to my current situation. I'm not conducting a temple recommend interview!

gentlefriend said...

Sorry, it was just a suggestion. I do a lot of informal counseling these days but I don't do temple interviews. I am sorry if you felt that I was trying to structure you into a bishop's role. That was not my intent. I was responding to what I thought was your question as to how to help someone without stiring up your hormones. I am sorry if I offended you or seemed condescending in my suggestion. That was not my intent. Thanks for being open with your feelings about my suggestion. I hope that this clears the air. If not let me know.

Beck said...

Gentlefriend: Everything's cool... I just meant to say that I'm a touchy-feely guy and I'm not going to change. For me to change now would seem very fake and insincere, and I'm not about to do that. He's my friend. He's a very dear, dear friend. I'm sure you understand... when you're with such a dear friend, you can't put a chair between you... I'm going to be who I am. I'm not going to change. But, what I can do, is be more aware of the "borders" I've placed for my own good, but hugs and even friendship kisses are still in the picture.

Thanks for your words of caution and kind spirit of friendship. No apology necessary, and I hope you'll continue to feel free to slap me around a bit - I'm pretty sassy at times, but I mean well as well and always appreciate a good slap on the head. :)

Switch said...

The only advice I can add here,
and I realize you know it already:

Don't cheat.

You're in a tough spot, one I've never been in, so I'm no expert.

For what it's worth, I've seen a lot of divorce in my family. All us kids turned out fine over time, but the more bitter the ending, the longer the damage from it will last.

You can choose the gay relationship road. However, if ever you loved your wife, you need to tell her what's happening as gently as you can BEFORE you do ANYTHING. This includes "we didn't really do anything" things like kissing, rubbing noses, sucking toes, whatever.

The cheater has it easy at first, but the cheated on go through a lot of pain, and it's very difficult for them to trust someone again.

I don't think gay relationships are wrong in the least. I let that go several years ago, and I'm very happy and glad I did.

But, I redundantly repeat, don't cheat on your wife.

Beck said...

Switch: Thanks for stopping by. Your advice about not cheating on my wife is truly noted. I know I'm walking on the edge and it's easy to fool myself that I'm really not hurting anyone.

As hard as it may be, and as much as I have a part of me that doesn't want to, I'm going to pull back the passion and increase the good-ol' friendship and see where things go.

But "cheating" is not my luxury or my intent. I just let passion get the better part of me at times.

Thanks for the reminder of the pain I can unintentionally cause.