Tag Archives: attraction

Picture This

This past Tuesday afternoon I talked with my therapist about my elongated struggle with men. I told her about how that morning, I spent around half an hour investigating when Caroline Knapp, one of my favorite writers, met the romantic partner she later married, Mark Morelli. I used my millennial/Gen Z cusp internet sleuthing skills and pulled up several articles about her, such as one about when she and Morelli went to couples therapy together and another that shared that she got sober at 36.

“I figured out that she met him in her early 30’s,” I said. “Which is kind of helpful but kind of not because if I do want to date a man, which is questionable, I want him now.”

“There’s a sense of urgency here,” my therapist said. We had stopped wearing masks at this point, both of us vaccinated and sitting at least six feet apart, so I could see her smile. “I wonder if you can think of this like growing a garden.”

Omg, she’s about to solve all of my mental health problems with florals, I thought to myself. Continue reading

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Another Five Years

If you read this blog, you know I dislike my attraction to men. I always say that I love being gay, I just disdain feeling romantic attraction toward a gender socialized to be uncommunicative, uncaring, and unself-aware. In my day to day life my attraction to men affects me very little because I feel fulfilled by my intimate friendships and more casual friends, I have meaningful ways to contribute to compassion and social justice, and I love myself. This past week though, I reflected on another reason I wish I were not attracted to men: if I were to be with a guy, I would want someone who has and continues to work on himself, which I have no control over.

I feel like this prerequisite frustrates me because I like planning and some level of control. Continue reading

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If I Could Choose

Oftentimes I despise feeling attracted to men. I love my gayness, it just sucks to be into men because we’re socialized to be uncommunicative, uncaring, and overall unsatisfying. Most days I wish I could choose not to be attracted to men, because then I wouldn’t risk abandoning my values or settling for someone mediocre.

About a week ago I felt super angsty reflecting on how I have no choice being attracted to men. Continue reading

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Filed under Personal, Society

Oh, What If

The other day I talked for two and a half hours with this really cute radical Asian guy from California. Over Zoom, we chatted about what got us into leftist frameworks, discrimination in the dating scene, and whether it felt possible to create meaningful justice-oriented change in academia. I liked our conversation a lot. While I tend to be outgoing and energetic in conversations, he had a chill and mellow vibe I found refreshing. The somewhat unfortunate news: he’s straight.

I am letting myself feel sad about his straightness. I recognize that even if he were not straight, we had literally one conversation which may not have turned into anything anyway. But this California guy stood out to me. One of my previous crushes was radical yet not emotionally available or mature, and another was more emotionally available yet not that radical. California guy seemed to have both, the radical social justice leaning and the emotional availability. I feel a little sad about not getting to know him in a romantic way.

Over the past few years, I have gotten a lot better about giving myself space to feel sadness. Continue reading

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A Therapeutic Response to a Crush that Keeps on Crushing

How do you cope with a ten-month crush that will just not quit? In July, when my most recent crush said he did not feel ready to talk to me, I used every ounce of my willpower to move past him. I first sent him an angry email because one, I felt angry, and two, if I roasted him that meant I could tell myself I no longer cared about him. I then invested my energy, as I always have, into my clinical work, mentoring, friendships, and hobbies. For the last couple weeks of September, I felt that I had moved on from him, managing to go days at a time without thinking about him and at least two or three conversations at a time with friends without analyzing him and his motives. I even went on the patriarchy capitalism devices, otherwise known as dating apps, for a few days before remembering that dating apps make me feel sick.

I experienced a romance-induced relapse last week, when my brain betrayed me and flooded with thoughts of him: is it possible that he still likes me?  Continue reading

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