November 11, 2014 – Bryant is 38 years old. He states he is attracted to both men and women.
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“In 2011 my wife had caught me in yet another lie that was supposed to cover up my double life. I thought that this time she would leave me and never come back, taking our two beautiful children with her. I resented the solution that too many people offered me: to abandon my wife and children, accept that I was gay and live life as a gay man. That was not what I wanted.
I had the chance to do that before I met my wife and had children with her. The stakes were much lower when I was single – and I realized then that was not what I wanted. Back then I dated men and was involved in the gay community where I lived. But I felt like it was killing my spirit; alienating myself from God and a sense of higher purpose. Unable to find help in dealing with my homosexual struggles, I resorted to a double life. My life was a mess. Thankfully, my wife decided not to leave me – yet.
Grieving over the intense pain I had caused my wife and her very legitimate hurt and rage at me, I entered therapy. In counseling I was taught how to express my suppressed anger and how to break the addiction cycles in my life. I approached a man at my church and asked him to be a spiritual mentor to me. He readily agreed. He knew nothing about homosexuality, but he knew God and he knew about pain.
About halfway through therapy, my therapist challenged my engrained perceptions. He said, “Your soul demands male connection, and that desire WILL express itself, one way or another. It WILL come out. Suppressing it will only work for a short while. If you don’t experience authentic, intimate and platonic connection with other men, the need will drive you to find it sexually. One way or another, the need will be met.”
Over the next year there were ups and downs, slips and falls, courage and fear – but I had new sources of strength. Through it all my wife stood by me, loved me and encouraged me as she saw real changes in my heart, not just my behavior.
Today I know I am not perfect. And that’s okay. But I am whole. I have real connections with God, with men, with manhood, and within myself. I have learned to give and receive love from men as my brothers, and trust them with my heart.”
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