Tuesday, April 22, 2014

A Touchey Situation ~~~

Posted: 22 Apr 2014 05:25 AM PDT
GAYTWOGETHER-100808-3wDeveloping skill with touch is an important part of having successful relationships. Touch is critical to human beings.The love and support communicated through touch affirms our connection to others and has even been shown to contribute to the health of our immune systems. Many studies have shown that when infants are neglected and not held, they fail to thrive. Something similar seems true for us adults.
Too many men have limited skill when it comes to touch.Their experience with the way men make contact is limited -- a slap on the back from Dad, wrestling with friends growing up, the touch of a boyfriend during sex. For others, touch has too often been abusive -- being smacked around by schoolmates or parents, or uninvited and unwanted sexual touch.
Maybe you’ve found yourself in a bar talking with a friend, only to find someone rubbing up against you. This can be fun and a turn-on or annoying and intrusive, depending on your frame of mind and how you feel about the person initiating the physical contact.
Unfortunately, some men have the opinion that if you’re a gay man and I’m a gay man, then I automatically have the right to touch or grope you if I want to. And even more unfortunately, others of us have never learned that we have the right to say “no” to unwelcome touch.

Have you ever gone to a movie with a date and found him stroking your arm over and over and over again in exactly the same way -- almost as if he was a robot? You suspected that he meant to be affectionate, but pretty soon you were ready to run screaming from your seat! Touch that doesn’t have presence and attention behind it can create the same sensation as fingernails raking down a black board.
Physical contact that works and is welcome can have just the opposite effect -- calming us, drawing us closer to the person with whom we are sharing touch.

To increase the quality of your touch, think of your hands as an extension of your heart. Instead of casually brushing your hand over someone, bring focus to your touching; you are touching them with your heart. Imagine that this is the only person in the world who exists right now. He has your undivided attention while you are in contact with him. Take your time.

Not all touch is sexual. If touch equals sex for you, you may need to slow down and explore a bit. Friendly, inviting contact between people can be reassuring, comforting and enjoyable in its own right and need not be an invitation to sex. Some people are uncomfortable with touch when they assume that the person initiating contact has an unspoken erotic agenda.

Touch which is repetitive or constant becomes boring and easy to ignore. Vary the intensity and pressure of your touch. This is true whether you are touching a friend to make a point during conversation or whether you are caressing your partner to bring him to orgasm. Touch can be with finger tips or the whole palm. It can be quick and invigorating -- think of a back rub -- or slow and soft.

Learning new ways to make physical contact increases our “touch vocabulary,” and helps us communicate with others.

John R. Ballew, M.S. an author and contributor to GAYTWOGETHER, is a licensed professional counselor in private practice in Atlanta. He specializes in issues related to coming out, sexuality, relationships and spirituality. If you have any questions or comments you can submit them directly toGAYTWOGETHER or John R. Ballew, M.S. - www.bodymindsoul.org.

thanks MICHAEL@gaytwogether.com

Monday, April 21, 2014

Parents, IN-Laws and Out-Laws

Posted: 21 Apr 2014 05:25 AM PDT
Cp100349-828Gay men aren’t the only folks who have complicated relationships with parents and in-laws, of course.  But while straight couples typically get a lot of recognition, support and encouragement from their parents and other family members, things are often different for us.  Some families are very welcoming.  Other families are indifferent or hostile, and that can complicate loving relationships between men. 

Enlightened parents welcome a son or daughter’s partner into the family.  Even if this feels like uncharted territory to Mom and Dad, they grasp that the new love in their son’s life is the important thing, not the gender of the person offering that love.  Family get-togethers may be awkward times when protocol is still being determined, but good intentions and clear communication are enough to smooth over most rough spots. 

How to establish a good relationship between you and your partner and your parents?   
For starters, if you’re not already out to your parents – this is the time to do so.  They need to understand that your partner is your partner – not a roommate, “friend” or some other shrunken version of your true relationship.  If your parents want to introduce your significant other as “our son’s friend” if you bump into their acquaintances, that may not be a big deal.  But it is a very big deal for you to represent the relationship that way to people in your family network. 

Be clear about what you want and expect when you introduce your partner to your family.  Are you looking for parental approval?  If you are close to your parents it is understandable that you would want their support, but be clear:  you are an adult, and your life choices do not depend on Mom and Dad’s approval.  In fact, implying that you want that approval puts your parents in an awkward position.  Now instead of just meeting your beau, they have to give him their seal of approval.  Wouldn’t it be enough if they were simply polite and friendly around him?

Make it easy for your parents to give you what you want.  “Mom, I want you and Dad to come over for dinner next Saturday and meet my boyfriend Michael” is pretty clear.  “Um, Mom, there’s something I’ve been wanting to tell you.  I don’t know if this is a good time, but well, um, I’m seeing this guy Michael and I wanted to let you know” is not clear communication.  Put yourself in your mother’s place.  How is she supposed to react?  You sound ambivalent and uncertain.  Her reaction is likely to reflect that.

What to do when parents are unwelcoming to your partner, despite your best intentions?  This can create a painful dilemma; it can feel as if you must choose between your family relationships and your relationship with your partner.  While sometimes that is exactly the choice that must be made, more often the choice is really about how to respond to familial bullying.
   
For those of us who have been raised to be the proverbial “best little boy in the world,” it can be disorienting to realize that it’s time to stand up to family pressure
Remember:  you’re an adult now, and if you and your partner have made a commitment that reflects your love and devotion to one another, then he is your primary family now.  

John R. Ballew, M.S. an author and contributor to GAYTWOGETHER, is a licensed professional counselor in private practice in Atlanta. He specializes in issues related to coming out, sexuality, relationships and spirituality. If you have any questions or comments you can submit them directly toGAYTWOGETHER or John R. Ballew, M.S. - www.bodymindsoul.org.

Friday, April 18, 2014

Thursday, April 17, 2014

WISHING . . . .



JOY-FULL  HOLIDAYS . . . . .

                                                  .   . .peter & justin

Saturday, April 12, 2014

re-post from The Closet Professor. . . ..with permission, Thanks, 'Joe"

Wednesday, April 9, 2014

Reductio ad Hitlerum


Lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender (LGBT) rights advocates are part of a "radical homosexual movement" that mirrors elements of Nazi Germany, Rick Wiles is claiming.

As Right Wing Watch is reporting, the TruNews host blasted the LGBT community in a heated broadcast with Pastor Jeff Allen, who has previously evoked Nazi imagery while condemning gay rights.

"It's not an exaggeration to say 'homofascist' because the German Nazi Party was homosexual," Wiles said. "Hitler was a homosexual, the top Nazi leadership, all of them were homosexuals...they were creating a homosexual special race."

Wiles went on to note, "It wasn’t this thing about an Aryan race of white people, blue-eyed, blonde-haired, white people, Hitler was trying to create a race of super gay male soldiers ... It will end up in America just like it was in Germany, but it won’t be the Jews that will be slaughtered. It will be the Christians."

In February, Wiles' guest offered up similar sentiments.

"Many [LGBT rights advocates] really do console themselves with fantasies of their own Kristallnacht, in which Christians are euphemistically 'taken out of the way' as part of the 'gay'-stapo’s 'final solution' to the 'Christian problem,'"Allen wrote in an Op-Ed for Liberty Counsel attorney Matt Barber's website Barbwire.

Similarly, the American Family Association's Bryan Fischer referred to LGBT rights advocates as "Nazi stormtroopers" who are "totalitarian and repressive" in a 2013 broadcast.

Wiles' TruNews promotes itself on its website as "the world’s leading news source that reports, analyzes, and comments on global events and trends with a conservative, orthodox Christian worldview."

Comparison with Nazis is so overdone that there's even a name for it: Godwin's Law. In this case the more appropriate name might be the older dog Latin term Reductio ad Hitlerum, a term coined by conservative philosopher Leo Strauss in 1951. According to Strauss, the Reductio ad Hitlerum is an informal fallacy that consists of trying to refute an opponent's view by comparing it to a view that would be held by Adolf Hitler or the Nazi Party.  According to Strauss, Reductio ad Hitlerum is a form of ad hominem or ad misericordiam, a fallacy of irrelevance, in which a conclusion is suggested based solely on something's or someone's origin rather than its current meaning. The suggested rationale is one of guilt by association. Its name is a variation on the term reductio ad absurdum.

It is not the first time that someone has compared equal rights advocates to fascists or nazism, but merely another example in a long line of accusations.  The arguments are ridiculous and those who use reductio ad Hitlerum are using poor fallacies because they are so uneducated and unable to make a credible argument.  All they want to do is rule people up by using the comparison to fascism.  Vladimir Putin recently did that to describe the Ukrainian government in order to invade the Crimea.  The use of such fallacies can also be called argumentum ad Nazium a variant derived from argumentum ad nauseam, meaning arguing to the the point of nausea.

If Rick Wiles wanted to compare LGBT advocacy groups to the Nazis, he picked a horrible comparison.  LGBT groups, and all equal rights groups, want equal rights for all, someone that Hitler and his followers never came close to believing in. 

Thursday, April 10, 2014

"THE DAILY DISH" BEING A BLOG FROM THE PEN OF ANDREW SULLIVAN

i have enjoyed reading this particular entry in Uncle Andrew's blog several times and the often needed hearty laughter it engendered.  I hope you enjoy it and can enjoy laughing at ourselves.  It's not obligatory. . . . .;-))

Justin
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

The NYT just ran a piece on the apparent disfavor the word now has among some homosexuals. I have a pretty good guide to figuring out what to do with such a question which is to check out what GLAAD is saying and believe the opposite. As a writer, there are few things that piss me off more than being told which words I can and cannot use. Fuck that shit. (See? It’s good to have a blog.)
The impulse, sigh, is political:
The Gay and Lesbian Alliance Against Defamation, or Glaad, has put “homosexual” on its list of offensive terms and in 2006 persuaded The Associated Press, whose stylebook is the widely used by many news organizations, to restrict use of the word.George P. Lakoff, a professor of cognitive science and linguistics at the University of California, Berkeley, has looked at the way the term is used by those who try to portray gays and lesbians as deviant. What is most telling about substituting it for gay or lesbian are the images that homosexual tends to activate in the brain, he said. “Gay doesn’t use the word sex,” he said. “Lesbian doesn’t use the word sex. Homosexual does.”
“It also contains ‘homo,’ which is an old derogatory,” he added.
But I like the term “homo”! I use it all the time – about myself and others, although I also often use “fag” as well. The gay thought-police would be aghast, but the intent is what matters. Mine is mostly benign. Mostly. But mainly, one great legacy of the gay community has been our love of freedom, especially of speech. For centuries and decades, the right to free speech was our only truly secure constitutional right. We were always about enlarging what was sayable, rather than restricting it. Banning “homosexual” also reeks of insecurity. We are not so tender we cannot handle a clinical, neutral term, or even a slur or the re-appropriation of a slur. “Queer” was one such reclamation, although that’s much more pointed than “homosexual” and certainly doesn’t reflect how I feel about my orientation. There’s nothing queer about being horny and falling in love or lust or getting married. They’re among the most common activities known to humankind. But I sure don’t mind others using it – and more and more heteros want to call themselves “queer” too. But my main objection to getting rid of “homosexual” is that we would lose a not-too-easily replaced non-euphemism.
We have too many euphemisms about our orientation and they bespeak the weak-kneed lameness that’s the real thing that should be fading away:
While the Times article notes that “scholars expect the use of the term to eventually fall away entirely,” it doesn’t really consider the problems that loss could cause. It’s worth noting that gay has contested meanings as well, and by my definition of that word—which, very generally, has far more to do with a historically and geographically specific constellation of aesthetic tastes, artistic styles and modes of relating than with genitals—there are far fewer gay people around these days than there are homosexuals.
One of Slate’s commenters went all Stoppard on us:
AE Housman: “Homosexuals”? Who is responsible for this barbarity?
Chamberlain: What’s wrong with it?
AE Housman: It’s half Greek and half Latin!
Chamberlain: That sounds about right.
When I wrote Virtually Normal, I had to decide on a unifying adjective. “Homosexual” seemed to me to be a way of reaching those who would read and hear the term as an indicator that I was not rigging the argument with pro-gay rhetoric. I’m fine with “gay”, and use it all the time. But persuasion is best done on neutral ground. Maybe the word has become less neutral since 1995. But I cannot think of a better one.
Still, while I’m at it, there is a “word” that seems to me worth retiring. Not by fiat, just by trying to avoid or ignore it. It’s the unpronounceable p.c. acronym: LGBT. God I hate that “word”. It describes no single person; it cannot be spoken easily; it reeks of bullshit.  No one started using that word of their own accord as a way to describe herself. It was created by leftists who believe that all oppressed groups are primarily defined by their oppression and that the very different lives and identities of gay men, lesbians, bisexuals and transgender are somehow all one. I know it’s an effort at inclusion. I appreciate the good intent. And if it had any wit or originality, instead of sounding like a town in Croatia, I could live with it. But it doesn’t.
So fuck that shit.

RELATIONSHIP IN BIG PROBLEM


                                                                            (nice hat. . lol )

Posted: 10 Apr 2014 05:25 AM PDT


 ( Gay Relationships: Advice Column By Dr. Brian Rzepczynski )
Dear Dr. Brian:

I have a problem with my partner. We’ve been together for 8 months now, but the last 5 have been constant fighting over my behavior and character.
He wants me to change and be more strong like he is, to stop being romantic and so emotional to the point I cry, to separate my personal and work lives, to not be influenced by others, and to be more talkative and have standards in my life. I have tried, but nothing seems to be enough for him. He’s talked about breaking up with me.I don’t know what to do anymore to please him and I don’t want to lose him. What should I do?"  
- Backed In A Corner_____________________________________________

Dear Backed In A Corner:
Thank you for writing and I am very concerned by your letter. After 8 months of being together, your relationship with your boyfriend is still very young and should be a time of discovery and fun as the two of you share experiences together to build a foundation as a couple. Instead, it sounds like your relationship has become dominated and defined by conflict and negativity and this is a serious red flag that should not be ignored.

While I’m only hearing one side of the story, I have some concerns for the way that you are being treated. While I do advocate for all of us to be striving for personal growth to better ourselves, it sounds like your boyfriend is doing a lot of dictating about how you “should” be. Having a strong character with good values and integrity is very important, as is good work/life balance, being assertive and communicative, and having a solid vision and life goals. His need to have you improve upon these areas might very well be appropriate, however how is he presenting this to you?

Is he supportive and encouraging or demanding and critical? Is he trying to control and manipulate you? Whose goals are these…yours or his? The thing that really concerns me the most though is his statement that he wants you to stop being romantic and emotional. If this is an inherent part of who you are (there is absolutely nothing wrong with being romantic, passionate, and prone to crying), it is unfair for him to judge you and try to change these aspects that are core to your identity.

Is it possible you’re dealing with someone who is controlling and narcissistic? You will also want to examine your role in some of the problems in the relationship so you can take responsibility for your part in the fights and make those changes as needed. However, with the last 5 months having been characterized as “constant fighting”, I’m also worried that there may possibly be some emotional/verbal abuse occurring and this is never a good thing as your self-esteem can take a hit and it is extremely disrespectful and demeaning. If you do the same thing back to him, you’re perpetrating as well and are only serving to reinforce the dysfunction.

Tread very carefully, my friend. There are a lot of warning signs here that indicate this might not be such a healthy situation to be in. If your boyfriend wants to break up, it’s important that you validate for yourself that you deserve to be with someone who will treat you with positive regard and unconditional acceptance. Try to take stock of the lessons you learned about yourself and relationships and grieve your loss of him so your next partner choice will be more compatible with who you really are and want. Take the feedback you’ve heard from him and others about your behavior and decide for yourself what your strengths and weaknesses are and what traits about yourself you’d like to change for the better. Make yourself as “dateable” as possible and focus on building a stronger identity and self-esteem.

If you and your boyfriend discuss continuing to remain together, it’s important to remember several things. First, the two of you will need to improve your communication and conflict management skills and tolerate anger and frustration better. It will also be important for the two of you to create separate lists of what each of your negotiable and non-negotiable needs are for a partner and relationship and share these with each other. If either of you is unwilling to work on any non-negotiable needs that are identified, the relationship will likely perish and this should then alert you to not invest any more energy into it to avoid any more pain that would surely result.

It is critical that you be honest with yourself about what your true values are and never sacrifice your beliefs, values, and ideals just to stay in a relationship with someone. You’ll be giving up personal power and setting yourself up for a codependent relationship in which your needs will always be undermined and you’ll lose your sense of self. If your values don’t match, there will likely be ongoing conflict and tension and is a sign that this probably is not a good fit. The two of you would also benefit from seeking the services of a licensed counselor for both individual and couples therapy. 

So take good care of yourself. The worst thing you could do in this situation is to ignore the warning signs and do what he wants you to do just to pacify him and hang on to the relationship.

Also take a look at what your fears about losing him are really all about and work on building your confidence and independence. You deserve to be treated with dignity and respect and to be able to be who you are; otherwise, that’s not really love..that’s control.

It truly is better to be alone than trapped in a relationship where you’re not honored for who you are and made to feel “less than.” All the best to you with your decision-making.

© Dr. Brian Rzepczynski, The Gay Love Coach
( The suggestions and feedback offered in this column are but one perspective of multiple approaches to dealing with problems or challenges. Information provided in articles and advice columns should not be used as a substitute for coaching or therapy when these services are needed. None of this information should be your only source when making important life decisions. This information should not be used for diagnosing or treating a particular problem, nor should it take the place of a consultation with a trained professional. It is your responsibility to consult a professional prior to making any life decisions. )
Dr. Brian Rzepczynski, contributing author to GAYTWOGETHER, is one of the leading love coaches for the gay community. As a licensed dating and relationship coach, Dr. Brian Rzepczynski, DHS, MSW has over 18 years experience as a psychotherapist and life coach specializing in helping GLBT individuals and couples develop and maintain successful and fulfilling intimate relationships. He holds a doctorate degree in human sexuality from the Institute for Advanced Study of Human Sexuality and a master’s degree in clinical social work from Western Michigan University. He also runs a successful private therapy practice, Personal Victory Counseling, Inc. http://thegaylovecoach.com
 Love and pride Fashion

Thanks BRIAN  abd MICHAEL@gaytwogether.com