Monday, April 17, 2006

Can Life Be Guilt-Free?

Last night Jonah came over and we lay in bed together. It was just really nice to be with him and hold him and cuddle. We also made out for the first time, which was fun and exciting (sometimes too exciting; we had to cool it for a bit). Jonah, ironically, was the one who seemed worried that my roommates would come home and hear us. He wasn't worried for his sake, but for mine because he knows they don't know about us (although they'd have to be complete fools if they didn't suspect, and I know neither of my roommates are fools). One of them did come home, but I think he was in such a rush that he didn't take notice or hear us. But the thing was, I wasn't concerned about it. I didn't care if anyone knew.

So here's the thing: when Jonah and I were together last night and kissing and cuddling and hugging and holding and making out, I didn't feel guilty about it. I even said to him, "This feels so good and right." But after he left and all day today, I've really felt uneasy about it, and I hate that I feel that way. I love this relationship, and there is so much good about it that it bothers me that I feel guilty. And I'm like, "Okay, do I feel guilty because this is wrong and I'm trying to convince myself that it isn't; or do I feel guilty simply because my religious beliefs have so conditioned me that it's wrong that I'm not used to allowing myself to do things previously forbidden; and if that's the case, will it pass over time?" I just wish things didn't have to be so complicated. I wish I could just love the guy I love without all this emotional baggage. Because no matter what, I do feel what I feel. I do feel great love for Jonah, but I also am feeling guilt today, whether it's justified or not. And, you know, I once felt guilty about masturbating and even just lightly kissing Jonah, but I don't feel that way about those things, so maybe it's just a matter of getting used to giving myself permission to do things I've never allowed myself to do.

I just dislike feeling this way, especially because I love Jonah so much. It's not fair that I'm burdened with guilt, especially if its needless. But it also isn't fair, if these feelings are indeed wrong and not to be acted upon, that I feel what I do and seem to have little control over it. I just wish I could have a normal relationship. I'm sure none of you understand what I'm talking about. ;-)

Anyway, maybe it's just a matter of time. I know Jonah is concerned because he doesn't like me to feel angst. But, unfortunately, it happens to be what I'm feeling at this particular moment in time.


Dave Walter said...

Jonah must be one incredibly special person. If I were him, I'd have long ago said, "Honey, get over yourself, already!" ; )

As I think you've surmised, it's the deeply ingrained religious beliefs that are causing the guilt. I wish I could assure you that the guilt will lessen and disappear soon, but I don't know whether that will happen in your case.

Even though you've found the love of your life and seem to know in your heart that your being with Jonah is not only a good thing, but a wonderful thing, you nonetheless feel guilty. I could understand the guilt if you were merely sleeping around casually. But we're talking love here -- and love is supposed to conquer all, even deeply ingrained religious beliefs.

I'm a big advocate of therapy, and I suggest you consider it, if you haven't already. Exploring your feelings of guilt with a therapist can help you get past those feelings more quickly.

This is a time in your life when you should be allowed to experience unabated giddiness, undiminshed by guilt.

I wish I had a magic wand I could wave to make you feel totally good about yourself and your relationship wtih Jonah.

Elbow said...

I second what dave has said.

Therapy in every way, shape and form is going to do nothing but good, regardless of what path you choose.

Take it slow. Rushing things and getting too physical too quick is going to take away from the relationship. I think that time will heal your angst about it. Just be patient with yourself and allow yourself to feel what you need to feel and keep doing what you feel is good for you.

CatchingWaterfalls said...

I concure, Just give it time. Take it slow and enjoy being with him. Remember that physical intimicy is just ONE way that you can show him love.

Gay LDS Actor said...

Jonah is, indeed, an extremely special person. And I don't think it's fair for him to hang on to me while I try to make up my mind about what I'm going to do, but, for some reason, he loves me a lot and doesn't want to lose me, so he waits.
I've been raeding about guilt lately. I wish religions didn't make people feel so guilty because I don't think God is about guilt, but many organized religions (whether they mean to be or not) are. I think so many people (including myself) concentrate so much on the rights and wrongs of life (the justice of God), but forget how merciful he is.
Yes, this relationship with Jonah is based on love, and yes, I keep telling myself I shouldn't feel guilty about it, but sometimes I do.
I've been to therapy and have found it helpful, but I really don't think that's what I need in this case. I just need to come to peace with the decisions I make and be all right with whatever they are.
And thanks, CatchingWaterfalls, for your comment about there being more than one way to show Jonah I love him.
I, too, wish I had a magic wand, but I don't. I'm just taking it slow and taking it all one day at a time. Thank goodness Jonah is so patient. I would have given up on me a long time ago.
In any case, I appreciate your thoughts and input very much.
If I didn't believe my religion was true, this wouldn't be so hard, but I do believe that very much in spite of things. That may be hard for some people to understand or accept, but it's where I am.

David said...

I'm no expert, but I'm going to go out on a limb and say that there is no such thing as a "normal" relationship. Just do the best you can.

Gay Mormon said...

I had similar experiences -- i.e., no guilt -- when I first started kissing guys. However, I must admit that I question what I'm doing a lot these days.

Best of luck.

Warm Regards,
Gay Mormon

petercamenzid said...

"There is no fear in Love; but perfect love casteth out fear: because fear hath torment. He that feareth is not made perfect in love" (1 John 4:18)

"For God hath not given us the spirit of fear; but of power, and of love, and of a sound mind" (2 Timothy 1:7)

I look back and I find myself wasting precious years of my life immersed in fear and guilt. Why should a son fear his Father?