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Free to Be Me: A First-Time YOBBER's Retreat Experience
Free to Be Me: A First-Time YOBBER’s Retreat Experience
Something else that astonished me over the weekend was how much like myself I felt; how proud I was to be seen in the company of my fellow queer brothers; how un-worried I was about what anybody else thought. That's not like me. At least not how I have been.
YOB ConvoCast 074: Tom & Daniel Explore Body Image and the Ideal!
YOB ConvoCast 074: Tom & Daniel Explore Body Image and the Ideal!
Tom welcomes first-time guest and longtime community member Daniel to discuss journeys with body image and pursuit of the ideal! They share their adolescent vantages from both sides of the scale, Daniel overweight and Tom underweight, and how the gym and general fitness practices have factored into their lives in adulthood. Despite the lack of the ideal body or ideal life, is there something of value we can offer the world in our seeming lack?
A Straight Guy Goes on the YOBBERS Retreat
A Straight Guy Goes on the YOBBERS Retreat
I'd be spending the weekend with an entire group of gay/SSA/bi/queer men. Something I’d never done before. But, you know, YOLO. I'd told one of my friends from church, "It will probably be a lot like a typical Christian men's retreat." "Except with more hugging," he replied. But, really, why was I going?
YOB ConvoCast 058: Tom & Adam Stay Positive in This Life!
YOB ConvoCast 058: Tom & Adam Stay Positive in this Life!
Our holiday hiatus ends, and the new year begins with returning guest and community member, Adam! Adam joins Tom to talk about staying positive in this Side B life as we learn more of his story. We explore our top strengths from Strengths Finder and recount some of our favorite retreat moments this past fall. Adam also shares what he's excited for in 2023, including Second Christmas!
Breaking Beyond My Comfort Zones at the YOB Retreat
Growth Beyond My Comfort Zones at the YOB Retreat
When you are 60, you'd think that you no longer experience growth spurts. It's more recognizing life's process of devolution and slow decay, at least on the outside. This year’s YOBBERS retreat was not about expecting profound change, or gaining insights into myself and God that I would carry home; rather, it was seizing an opportunity to meet a group of men with whom I had dialogued, listened to, and only seen in postage stamp-sized pictures on Zoom – men of faith who share a common struggle to live the sexual ethic of the Gospels as they understand it.
Am I Actually in Touch with My Feelings as a Gay Man?
Am I Actually in Touch with My Feelings as a Gay Man?
Fours are emotional creatures. We feel things. We feel things deeply and often. A leaky faucet doesn't do the metaphor justice; my heart feels more like a fire hydrant turned loose on a city street. Handling the hydrant has challenged me my whole life, but especially these last few years. I've seen some success. And I also recognize how much room I have yet to grow.
YOB ConvoCast 053: Ben Still Has NO IDEA about His Enneagram Type!
YOB ConvoCast 053: Ben Still has NO IDEA about His Enneagram Type!
Just when you thought our Enneagram series was finished – we're back with another Ennea episode! We promise this ConvoCast will actually be the last one on the Enneagram (at least for a good while). We wanted to tie a bow on this series by bringing back Ben, who helped kick off this series on YOBcast 095, talking with somebody who doesn't identify as one particular Enneagram type but with multiple ones. This final episode of the series is for the "Enneagram wanderers" and "Enneagram prodigals" – those who find themselves bouncing and searching among several types, and those more apathetic (or perhaps antagonistic?) with the Enneagram. We hope this broader conversation on decision-making, vices, and virtues resonates wherever you stand with (or even against) the Enneagram!
YOB ConvoCast 052: Daniel Wants a Travel Buddy as a SEVEN!
YOB ConvoCast 052: Daniel Wants a Travel Buddy as a SEVEN!
Daniel remembers the first time he felt shame for showing enthusiasm as a child, and how that response impacted his introversion -- a rare disposition for Sevens. He discusses his love for travel, moving from the Philippines to the United Kingdom, visiting 35 cities in one year, seeing a different country every month, and even coming to America for multiple YOB retreats. But when does a love for travel turn to escape? When is escape healthy and courageous, and when is escape more detrimental? Regarding sexuality and relationships, was he constantly trying to escape something uncomfortable, something painful, something sad? We close the conversation with the growth and beauty of a Seven who can stay put and persevere -- with others, with self, and with God.
YOB ConvoCast 051: Aaron Unleashes the Anxiety as a SIX!
YOB ConvoCast 051: Aaron Unleashes the Anxiety as a SIX!
Aaron discusses the anxiety surrounding his sexuality through the years, including coming out to others as an adult and coming out to himself in high school. He also shares openly about taking medication to help with his anxiety. Throughout the episode we read lots of YOBBER feedback, much of it centering around anxious attachment with other men: how much ongoing reassurance is needed for the relationship, and how much is unhealthy? We talk a lot about fear in this episode, particularly relational fear and this ability to live out a Side B life, but also of courage and comfortability and the Six's ability to be incredibly loyal and steadfast! Perhaps if YOB and the greater "Side B" movement endure through the years, Type Sixes will be a big reason why.
YOB ConvoCast 050: Will is Supremely Uninterested in the Enneagram as a FIVE!
YOB ConvoCast 050: Will is Supremely Uninterested in the Enneagram as a FIVE!
Fives are heady types, supreme thinkers and philosophers, as Will confirms his "endless curiosity" for books and learning, and returning to school whenever he hits an existential crisis. Enneagram expert Ian Cron describes Fives as the most misunderstood type, people with emotions beneath their intellectual exterior, and Will confirms his journey with processing difficult emotions. He shares the appeal of intellectual attraction versus physical attraction for the Five, and he explains how his problem-solving nature wanted to "fix" his "gay problem" in adolescence. During stress Will admits getting disorganized and clingy, but during security he's passionate about strengthening the people around him – where, as a pastor, his Five-ness particularly shines. During times of doubt and questions, Will returns to the Gospels and his love for how Jesus makes sense of this world.
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