Antonio is 35 years old. He states he is sexually attracted to other men.
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My name is Antonio, 35 years of age and reside in Georgia. I became involved in “the life” as they called it. I was molested at the age of 5; which I feel is what opened the door. I was the infamous little boy who couldn’t fit in with my playmates. Very sensitive and delicate. I found my refuge in church songs or hearing about how much Jesus loved me.
I played “house” with other young boys growing up and my urges became more and more pronounced. I started hooking up with guys around age 12 and began to get more and more crafty in my ways of seducing to fulfill my sexual desires. Things began to escalate as I got older and began hanging around the locker rooms/showers of gyms in attempts to “hook up”.
The void was never filled (of course) but I kept putting salt on my open wound by going further and further. When I was 17 a good friend told me about a bookstore on the south end of town where men frequented – looking to “hookup”. This was a whole new world to me. I was fearful (being found out) but at the same time EXCITED about discovering this new world. Like all of us, I had “restraints”; which I would never cross because I had control of this thing . . . so I thought!
I became a frequent face in these places; hooking up with stranger after stranger. Crying afterwards with guilt and depression and losing total control. My restraints fell apart:
1. Never having sex with a married man
2. Never hooking up with anyone on my job
3. Never becoming “overly promiscuous”, etc.
By the time I was 23 I had hooked up with over 200 men. I know because I wrote the names of all the ones I could remember (some were as specific as first/last name; others as vague as “the lawyer in the red jeep”)
(Let me stop here and say the WORD of GOD says He is the lifter of our head so don’t let ANYONE, including your OWN opinion of yourself, determine your worth or current value to the kingdom. You were spared with a purpose. God can move you past all of your mistakes and bad choices with time, trust and patience. If you are in “the life” or dancing on the razor’s edge of “seeing what’s behind that door” because you’ve never acted out, please I beg you as a brother to take God’s word as true “the way of the transgressor is hard”).
Picking up where I left off. I kept looking for more and more thrills between my guilt and 24 carat genuine hatred of myself. I started going to bigger cities in Georgia where I was going to bath houses and sex parties and using chat lines. I was like Dr. Jekyll and Mr Hyde. The bashful tie wearing Bible toting God-fearing young man at church but the hurting and wounded predator in the night hurting others and exploiting these strangers wickedness for my own selfish gain.
When in my lust trances I came close to getting arrested and even physically beat up for making unwanted sexual advances to strangers. It was like an out-of-body experience. I scared myself with the nerve I mustered up. But Jesus would always let me know He was there. One night there was a man preaching with a 6 foot cross on his shoulder in front of a peep-show. I was so convicted. Another instance is when I went to get change with a $5.00 bill so I could get quarters to see the porn movies. On the back of the $5.00 bill someone had written in red ink “Jesus save me”.
I’ve had so many experiences, like many of you, to quiet anyone who would dare say Jesus does not make Himself known. I don’t want to seem like I’m glorifying the devil so my point is: trust God, obey Him, and receive His Love in all the ways He expresses it whether through this website, your favorite song, your children’s love or wife’s love for you, and His Word. It’s not too late for a detour.
One more bad reference to the negative: I remember in 2008 when I was 28 years old and I overstepped my last restraint. That is, I always said I would NEVER and I mean NEVER EVER hook up with someone I witnessed to who was looking for freedom from homosexuality. I ended up doing that time after time. My witness and my heart were shattered. What if these guys leave the church altogether because of my bad example??? I went to church and threw my Bible in the trashcan and said, “That’s it!!! I’m tired of fighting!!!!”
I cried and cried as I pulled out of the church. Full of guilt and disgust of myself. I went to a Christian bookstore later that afternoon. There was a Veggie Tales video playing. On the video, the cartoon Tomato and Cucumber were singing
“God is my sunshine my only sunshine. He makes me happy most everyday. Always remember how much God loves you and you can give His sunshine away!!”
God reignited my faith and love for Him that day. I’ve made many bad choices and mistakes since then. But if you don’t remember anything else, remember how God has spoken to you in the past and hold onto it in the times of temptation. Don’t give up, pray for me and I’ll pray for you. – Antonio
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