When the Masculine Ideal Failed Me

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!

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When Grief Tests a Friendship

He wanted me to be a man, to be tough, emotionally disciplined and not giving in to my grief. After all, we should consider ourselves like soldiers in battle who can’t afford to stop and grieve when someone dies. I couldn’t fully process everything at the time, but you can imagine how I felt as a sensitive guy.

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My Straight Friend Won’t Touch Me

He was never physically affectionate; we’d never even hugged. I wanted to touch him not out of a sexual desire but from a longing to connect with him as love with a brother. I dreamed of a day when we could embrace and confess our brotherly love for each other. I put my hand on his shoulder once. He brushed it off.

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When a Friendship Gets Tested

All these ups and downs often caused me emotional pain. I had to take risks rather than stay safe and comfortable. My SSA made me feel weak and ineffective around all these straight guys. These painful things tested my friendship with James, too.

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How an Alpha Male Became My Close Friend

A straight and very strong “alpha male” type leader has constantly challenged me to go beyond what is safe and comfortable to accomplish more of what really matters. We started becoming close friends, so I shared with him that I deal with same-sex attraction.

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