vulnerability

Coming Out of "Love, Simon" with Gratitude
Coming Out of “Love, Simon” with Gratitude
Beyond its romantic, mysterious plot-line, Love, Simon is an exploration of queer adolescence in the 21st century, complete with social media postings and aliases. The coming out experience lies central to the story, as Simon explores the new terrain of his sexuality with friends, family, and his entire school. I'd love all straight people – straight Christians – to watch Love, Simon, because it will show them how gut-wrenching (and also beautiful) the coming out process is for a gay person: of finally letting another human into the biggest secret of one's life.
What Would You Do if Your Dad Came Out to You?
What Would You Do if Your Dad Came Out to You?
How many of us have decided not to come out to our fathers because we knew it wouldn't go well? How many have been wrestling with the idea of telling our fathers for fear of the unknown? And how many of us have already come out to our fathers, a topic never again spoken about?
I Just Want to Understand the Other Boys
Although the teasing continued for the rest of the school year, I honestly learned to ignore it. I became a recluse at a very young age. This reclusiveness made the other kids – especially the other boys – a bit of a mystery to me. Particularly physically. Looking back, I realize I was in a bit of a paradox: I didn't want the other boys to see any of my body, but I also had somewhat of an interest in theirs.
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.
Gay and Disabled – Just Like Me
Gay and Disabled – Just Like Me
We never really talked about sex in any capacity, as in which girls we liked, or how our disabilities intertwined with our sexuality. The topic was a moot one, sometimes uncomfortably so. Eventually, I had the dreaded conversation with my friend. You know the one: "I'm gay but acting on such feelings goes against what I believe as a follower of Jesus." My friend then came out to me as well! He also didn't want to act on such feelings.
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.
One Day You'll Actually See Me, Mom
One Day You’ll Actually See Me, Mom
My mom didn't start saying she loved me until she became a Christian in the early 80's. Now she says it almost every day, and I feel like she's doing it to make up for all those lost years. As far as I'm concerned, those "I love you's" are empty because she's been saying it to the straight Michael she's always preferred instead of the Michael actually in front of her. And because of that, I've learned to tolerate her acknowledged denial of my life.
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.
YOB ConvoCast 049: Tom & Alex Feel All the Feels as FOURs!
YOB ConvoCast 049: Tom & Alex Feel All the Feels as FOURs!
Tom and Alex discuss the qualities they love about being Fours: artistic, empathetic, and yes, unique. In times of security they're objective and productive, taking action and creating things that add beauty to the world. A Four's "superpower" is empathy, giving others permission to "feel all the feels" with them, too. Tom and Alex also dive into their dark side of Four-ness: the neediness, the manipulation, the constant craving for approval, particularly from other men. Fours are often described as people who perceive lacking a critical "missing piece," and as queer or SSA men this hits especially deep for Tom and Alex. In adolescence did they miss some critical component for masculinity or sexuality, along with connecting with the other boys? What is the path forward for a Four in those whirlwinds of emotional stress?
Three Tactics for Fighting Intrusive Sexual Thoughts
Three Tactics to Fight Sexually Intrusive Thoughts
For so many years I thought I was just dirty, lustful, and awful for thinking all these terrible sexual thoughts. I was filled with constant shame because the sexually intrusive thoughts kept coming. The realization that I can actually, with practice, redirect my own thoughts, is more freeing than I can write.