Friday, July 17, 2009

Same Sex Attraction, Silence, and Suicide

Recently I have been meeting weekly with a group of Christian guys who also struggle with same sex attraction (SSA). This has been a great blessing to me. I already have straight Christian friends I talk to about this, but in this group there is a type of uniquely effective encouragement and helpful correction. I believe we need to talk to others about our struggles. Silence only causes more problems!

I was raised in the "Bible Belt" and kept silent about my SSA due to cultural pressure. My family mostly would not talk out loud about this subject and we even developed a system of hints and non-verbal communication concerning SSA that offered "plausible deniability". That way, we could all claim we did not know that I or my brother liked other guys. Anyway, I eventually did find Christian friends I could talk with, but I miss the help that might have been if there had not been that culturally imposed silence.

Two of my friends who struggle with SSA related troubles have been very depressed and nearly suicidal lately. By the way, they are the same guys I called “Tom” and “Austin” earlier in this blog. They are both in family/church/cultural situations that impose silence on them and I suspect that adds to their depression. I have known two suicide victims who I strongly suspect were depressed due to silence about the emotional pain connected to SSA. Here is a link to a blog where the author talks about silence and SSA-related suicides:
I Like Guys. There. I said it.

We need to do all we can to encourage especially Evangelical Christians to stop culturally imposing silence on those that struggle with same sex attraction. Silence can be deadly !