A couple years back, I worked a temp job out of state. I was excited to live far away from home for the first time and get a change of scenery. I’d made no friends whatsoever in college, so I was hoping a relocation might help me find people to click with — especially men to become brothers.

Surely I would find them!

I imagined the college ideal with the perfect roommates. We’d be best of friends and become part of a masculine tribe.

My housing department gave us the opportunity to choose our roommates, and several Facebook groups helped us do just that. I scoured the members list hoping to find the perfect guys.

I found a guy who seemed perfect! We connected and traded our roommate profile sheets. His name was Tommy, and his profile stated he was also a Christian — which was ideal. His profile definitely made him seem like the modern, ideal, “manly man.”

He was a jock type with many photos of himself playing baseball. He also stated drawing as one of his hobbies, just like me.

A straight masculine dude who plays sports, likes drawing, and calls himself a Christian? Perfect!

Tommy and I shared a bedroom in an apartment with four other guys. Things went great the first couple months of working and living together. We hung out a lot, went to get dinner at many places, and enjoyed lots of chats.

He wasn’t shy about sharing his Christian beliefs. One night, I drove home from supper with him and a couple other roommates and he turned our discussion to thoughts on religion. Tommy asked if any of us believed in God.

I said I did while the other roommates shrugged with an “I don’t know” response. From there, he asked if any of us had seen the movie, God’s Not Dead.

We all said we hadn’t. He went on and on about how great of a movie it was and that we should all watch it together sometime — which we never did.

I suppose that was his attempt at trying to “evangelize” the other roommates?

At this point, things began to take a sharp turn for the awkward.

I learned that Tommy had broken up with his girlfriend from back home. One evening, he invited a girl who was a “friend” over to the apartment. They sat side by side on his bed, and he kept looking at her with a goofy grin — to which she giggled and playfully pushed him away. I tried to ignore it.

After a while, they started snuggling under the covers. Yes, I know I’ve written two blogs about the benefits of cuddling. But these weren’t tender, platonic cuddles.

Every once in a while, the girl went, “Ahahah eh, ohmigosh STOP! You are so meeeaaan!” To which Tommy naughtily giggled.

It was such an awkward sight, I had to leave the apartment and go for a drive. Tommy texted me to ask where I’d gone, saying I didn’t need to leave when he had girls over and that I could still hang out in the room with them.

Seriously? What’s worse was that he kept bringing home many different girls over the next few weeks.

I knew for sure that more than cuddling was happening when he came home from the grocery store with a large box of condoms. Once, I even saw a ripped open condom package on his bedside table.

What bugged me most was his sheer lack of shame or attempt to hide his sexual activities from me.

Tommy seemed to notice my unspoken discomfort with his having girls over — which, I think, offended him. After a while, he stopped talking with me and spent his nights with his girls at their places instead of ours.

At the end of the semester, he didn’t invite me to room with him in a new apartment. The day of the move, he walked right out the door with his new roommates without saying a word to me.

I don’t tell this story as some “holier than thou” revenge over Tommy, because Lord knows I’ve had my sexual struggles, too. However, I do want to use this story to point out the hypocrisy in the Church and American masculine culture.

It’s a culture that says a “manly man” has sex with many women while homosexual sex is disgusting. The Church may generally wag their finger at premarital sex, but they seem to shrug it off in a “boys will be boys” sort of way while condemning homosexual sex as the worst sexual act imaginable.

Isn’t all sex outside of marriage sin? Regardless of what kind of sex it is?

For a man who self-righteously professed his strong Christian beliefs, Tommy seemed totally unaware of any wrongdoing. My theory is that his jock background taught him that it’s encouraged to have premarital sex with lots of girls.

Perhaps his breakup with his girlfriend made him feel non-masculine and that having sex with many others would earn back his man card? Or probably he just had a liberal view on Christian sexual ethics.

I sense his athletic peer background influenced his behavior, and he did not take a hard look at his beliefs. Whatever his reasoning, I don’t intend to say “straight dudes suck.”

I mainly want to say this: I have seen so many SSA / gay / side B men agonize in self-loathing and guilt over their past sexual encounters. They feel they are beyond forgiveness and God’s love.

But are you really any worse than my “manly” straight roommate who carelessly had sex with many women?

No, you are not. You are loved. At least you have the courage to admit you did something wrong. Repent and move on with a full heart.

All people, gay or straight, struggle with sexual sin. None is worse than the other.

Have you ever felt condemned that any past homosexual acting out is “worse” than other sexual sin? Have you ever idolized someone for his “masculine ideal” only to be disappointed?

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