Over the last few weeks, there have been the suicides of two well know gay porn stars. This caused a fairly heated debate about the porn industry especially as both do regular blogs. There was a sense that the suicides were linked to being involved in the industry and that the two go hand in hand in some ways. There were a couple of hateful responses around the morality of porn and this in some ways is to be expected , if you put yourself out there so to speak you will get feedback, both positive, negative and in different. If you’re involved in that line of work, you can’t expect your “ego” to be constantly fed accolades and be worshiped as a hero. Anyway enough of the content around the responses. For me what was interesting was the level of reaction about this and I couldn’t wonder what if it had been say two average looking gay rights activists that had taken their lives rather than two guys adorned as sex gods and physically perfect. Would the reaction have been the same? Would their have been all the posts about how tragic this was, what a loss this was etc? About what this may say about the gay male community, is it over sexualised and is someone’s looks, body and dick size more important than their heart, what they do and the contribution to the world that they make?
Suicide, self harm, mental health issues, drug and alcohol usage is far higher in gay and bisexual men then it is in any other group of people, so its not uncommon in fact gay men are something like ten times more likely to attempt suicide then their straight counterparts.
Personally I feel any suicide is tragic, as someone who has had suicidal thoughts (due to feeling alone and isolated) it’s not nice to go through that and either acting or not acting on the thoughts is no easy thing trust me. That darkness can be consuming, so when someone has taken that action and succeeded the question for me is how can this be prevented in the future, what was going on with them and where was the support around them? I can see how being involved in an industry that is driven by sex, being sexy, having a big cock, having an amazing physique and great looks that being a human and having feelings comes pretty low down the list and that having needs and mental health issues is not seen as very “horny” so there would be pressure to keep issues to yourself. The same can be said in the wider gay community, being seen as having baggage, a past, needing love and support aren’t really welcomed. Aren’t we supposed to be outgoing, partying, funny, bouncy and always happy? In some ways many gay men face these issues, I could quote more mental health stats and the routes of these issues are reasonably clear to me. When you grow up in a heterosexist society and yes things are getting better but there are still people out there saying how “wrong” we are, how we don’t deserve equality etc? This has affects that’s not rocket science. However when it comes down to my gay and bisexual brothers taking their lives , whether they are a porn star, a teen or gay rights activist they all deserve acknowledging , their stories shared and everyone working to reducing the number of gay men who attempt suicide or who sadly succeed.
Well, In the gay media recently has been the reported deaths of gay men due to drug overdoses (GHB). This is more common than many people may realise or want to face. Over a weekend Hospitals in the area of Vauxhall in London regularly see gay men end up in Accident and Emergency due to either drug overdoses or mixing drugs and or alcohol that doesn’t mix. Why is this important you may ask?
Well research from The Lesbian and Gay Foundation in Manchester has found that gay men are something like TEN TIMES more likely, than heterosexual men to have taken a class A substance in the last six months now this is shocking statistic and if like usage or crack and or heroin which is linked to crime, we saw similar increase in gay men committing crime then maybe we would see more action from Government and Drug and Alcohol services (yes there are some e.g. Antidote in London) that are doing good work! Also some indications are now coming through that more gay men are developing physical dependency to some recreational drugs ( GBL) this means that there needs to be a prescribed medical solution as well as a counseling intervention, so like with heroin where (methadone). However there is no real strategy like there is with heroin to tackle this! And as I have said numbers are increasing, leave aside Meow, Mcat, MDMA, E, Coke, Ketamine and Crystal Meth. The usual drug of choice for gay men.
Now I am no prude and I have myself dabbled in partying and using Class A’s however I always knew when enough was enough and only ever experienced two times when I had bad experiences of paranoia, panic attacks or basically losing control of my physical and mental senses. I have however seen many men who have and ask the A&E folk, or people who have done outreach in the clubs in Vauxhall how many they see over a course of a weekend.
Now I came out in the 1990s when Gay Clubbing really took off and when you could party from Friday night to Monday morning with out stopping. When E’s cost £15 (THEY NOW COST £5 at most!) When we started to see things change politically, legally and socially for gay men, we were more visible and the gay media really started to take off and also more people were flirting with the Pink Pound and realized we, well some of us had money to spend! Also at the time treatment for HIV really started to improve and gay men with HIV were starting to live longer and healthier. Why I am mentioning this, well all of this in my mind has sown the seeds of where we are today!
I would say that most people would agree that high degree of class A drug use amongst gay men is an indicator that something is amiss somewhere, also the link with risky sexual behaviour and drug use as well, I have known guys who have spent 36 hours in a sauna off their faces and have no idea of who they had sex with and what they have done. I am not saying that everyone who uses class A’s has issues or needs some kind of help. However there is clearly an issue here, why when we are now almost treated completely equal are so many men engaging in self harming behaviour as in some regards what this is, is self harm? The UK has the LGB&T equality rating in Europe! Yet this issue remains along with rates of HIV that aren’t going down!
So how has this come about! Well for me I see this has having several roots. As a community we’re still healing from effects of growing up in a heterosexist and to some degree homophobic society, The demon of HIV doesn’t seem so bad now to many gay men. We have a gay media that perpetuates a stereotype of a gay lifestyle revolving around looking muscle, having loads of sex and being out all the time on the gay scene, we have saunas open 24 hours a day, Mobile phone apps that allow us to hook up with any random bloke any time of the day, we have services that are still not aware of the needs of gay and bisexual men. I know now there is an issue with gay men feeling comfortable with telling a sexual health nurse that at the weekend they fucked by 10 men and had two fists up their arse!
The issue of the gay media and the stereotypes of what sexy gay men look like and how the currency gay men can use to judge their worth being sex can be quite damaging to oneself esteem especially if the one place you go to, to feel safe is the gay scene. And on that gay scene drug use Is prolific and a lot of that drug use is during sex. So you can perhaps see we have a nice little cycle their!
Then on to Social media apps and the ability to hook up, which increases the chances of getting sex. Just the other day I was chatting to a guy to was so complimentary to me, About how sexy I was, How interesting I seemed, until he asked me if I did Tina when I replied No, he stopped messaging me, so again here is the push for men to feel pressurized to try and experiment with drugs in order to feel accepted and part of something or to feel that they will be loved, found sexy by another man!
With issue of HIV of many men feeling it’s not as bigger deal as it was say in the late 80s and early 90s, when at that time 100s of gay men were dying every year from HIV related condition and today that total! So the more risk taking and feeling that it’s not an issue. Again I must be asked by perhaps one in ten of the guys who message me if I bareback and they usually ask if I do Chems as well!
If all of this isn’t challenging enough the people who provide drug services are mostly unaware of all of this. I do do training courses in awareness and have done so with drug and alcohol workers who most of them don’t know that for example gay men are TEN TIMES more likely to have taken a class A in the last six months!
Of course the responsibility lies in a few places, with gay men to seek support, support each other and perhaps think about our behaviour and the messages we have just accepted and bought into. Into gay media for being so focused on specific types of gay men and gay lifestyles, On services not being as aware as they could be of our needs and issues. There may be not be a correlation between drug use and gay men committing crimes however evidence is indicating higher levels of dependency and addiction. So something has to be done
This is a huge issue and as I started to write this it become more obvious that I had a lot to say on this! At the end of day I just want to feel that life is happier and healthier for me and for my gay and bisexual brotherhood. We are all in this together so to speak so we have some responsibility to make things better and reduce or eliminate the numbers of gay men who end up in causality or worse dead!
I have been a member and part of the SG family for a while now and I am pleased and grateful that I found this loving space in cyber land.
How astrology has fit in with my development!
As I type this the Sun is halfway through his journey through Leo who he rules, Mercury is at One degree Leo retroing, So I am working on, along with my fellow rams (suns or rising!) the inner child, or as I say as Leo is regal the inner Prince and Princess. While my/our Egos are being upgraded and getting the Uranus treatment and Pluto transforming our careers and Saturn giving our partnerships, the Saturn treatment and we all know he’s tough!
I will do my best to blend this all together and share how it has been for me.
So I will start with the Sun and Mercury. I have been given the chance to nurture my Inner Prince again, now he has had issues in he past and still does to some extent no wonder really as I grew up in Children’s Homes from the age of five and the time I was at home before aged five, I had a Mother (Aquarius with Leo rising) who was OCD and Bi Polar and a father (Virgo, I suspect Capricorn rising) who never really wanted a child and got trapped into a marriage when my mum got pregnant (they weren’t married at the time) I have clear memories of them arguing when I was a baby and me crying and them not coming. When my father left and they divorced when I was two. My mum couldn’t cope and I was over conditioned as a little Prince (OCD mum lol)
Anyway I grew up in care and moved homes five times. I was bullied in the last home mericlessly because I wasn’t into fighting and usual boy stuff and because I wouldn’t fight physically! On reflection after I came out as gay that they had probably picked up I was different like that and tried to bully it out of me! Lol well that worked well as I came put anyways! They also didn’t like that I studied well at school and did well, which was amazing considering I had missed so much of it before.
I was bullied at school because I came from my home!
Anyway I did have contact with them while I was in care they blamed each other for went on, visit and contact was chaotic at best!
Anyway thats some context as to where my Inner Child and Little Prince came from, which is useful to know when working on this transit. So I have found the Sun has shone his light on the areas needing light, love and warmth and Mercury is going over all the old messages and programming I received in that period.
Now I was bullied because of who I was, for my sensitivity, However I have remained Authentic to whom I am it has been a challenge sometimes as the Little Prince wants to be accepted yet will not conform to do so lol which has been tricky to balance sometimes. Luckily the being gay hasnt been an issue despite the attempt to beat it out of me while I was a child. So right wingers and crazy Christians you can’t make gays straight lol! Mercury has been helping look at where those messages still hurt me and where the Sun needs to shine his light to soothe the Prince to become the Wise, Loving King!
Now onto the Ego, the work of the Sun and Mercury fits here as the Ego and Inner Child are linked and sometimes the Inner Child/Little Prince influences how the Ego or my Ego has acted out! I am aware of my need for attention no shit Sherlock lol what with North Node, Chiron, Moon, Venus, Sun, Saturn all in Aries and my 11th house! The Childhood stuff and Uranus breaking it all down as he is still in the first third of Aries and has gone over my north Node, Chiron and my moon. So my emotions, healing and karma in someways a tricky transit, while at the same time squaring Pluto in Cappy and how my ego is linked to m y career and the relationship that has with each other. As in my ego is tied into what I do and with all that Aries and 11th house stuff is societial and how society and what I do in it is part of who iAm.
Anyway lately there has been breakdown and breakthrough doing this blog I feel is part of the break through as is paying for six mentoring sessions with Diane Hall to increase my spidey senses and get me on track to do the work I am here to do. Moving to Manchester to improve my social life and career options. Be flexible about what my options and possibilities are. Despite my frustrations and sometimes my Little Prince not acting as I would prefer, I feel, sense, know and believe I am here for a reason and have a message or messages to share (Gemini rising!) Especially how I can communicate with my voice being compromised by the surgery I had.
I will be brief about MErriage, Even though on a sexual, social and relationship level Saturn’s transit through Libra my fifth house and marriage sign has been frustrating and almost non existent and sometimes fodder for my mind to kick in and say well look at your childhood you are unloveable etc… On the whole I have noticed my tastes in Men have actually become broader and as such the opportunities for a relationship. my values and what I am after on a human, spiritual level have remained constant as I was always quite clear that the bloke has to be my Prince and treat me like a King! So mutual love and respect!
All this with my health stuff which I am now pretty sure is down to solar flares as each time I have an episode a day ot two later I read that Solar Flare activity has been high
Anyway thanks for your time in reading this, MY intention was to share what has happened and how I have experienced this transits.
My learning has been pretty intense and I know I haven’t always conducted myself as resourcefully as I could however I have always been Authentic and in context have done amazingly well not only to get through such a challenging childhood and I appreciate every childhood has its challenges! To have gone through such a massive operation recover so quickly! To have stuck with making the changes and doing the work. To wanting to share my experiences help others as I do have such a big desire and intention to make the world a better place. To having a good sense of whom i Am and to accepting myself more and more and as much as I can! I am still work in Progress, however we ALL are or we’d not be here on earth at this time we weren’t still work in Progress. All part of my Journey, of all of you and your Journeys is part of healing the Planet as a whole, One life time is many life times of the Planet! Earth is growing up into Aldulthood and by me working on my Little Prince and you working on your little Princes and Princesses we are working on the earths inner child as well.
I love you all for all your contributions to my learning. ♥♥♥
For the next few sessions I will look at the A –Z of life skills, life management and improving your outlook and hence your chances of success!
A is for allow or allowing, Sometimes just being in a state of allowance is resourceful, I am not saying that you are accepting something or putting up with something you do not want, Its about being in the energy space of allowing to have that feeling… Before you do something to change it! Being in a state of allowance means that you are judging yourself less, judging a situation differently which can lessen its “impact” on you!
B is for Breathing, now this may sound simple. Well it is, our emotional state can be changed through breathing more effectively and many of us do not breathe as effectively a we can! So to do this you breathe in through the nose and out through the mouth and try to breath from your stomach or your diaphragm! It’s good to do as much as you can or all the time if you can! Breathing helps shift the energy of your body as well
C is for consciously create, as in consciously create your life and your experiences. How often to do let your mind run away with negative thoughts with, Judgements, Conclusions, Computations and Decisions about others about your life, about your day and most importantly about yourself? You are the creator of your experience, so why not create a better experience. Remember what I said about mental rehearsal? Same principle. So small steps at first! Spend a few minutes when you wake up each morning creating your day, how you want it to be/go, what intentions you have for it etc….. Run it for about five mins…. Yes it takes practice and gets easier the more you do it!
D is for Dream, Dream, big, Dream limitlessly
E is for Ego, Is it your friend or not, your ego is behind your little voice, your inner voice and your self talk! It’s the one that tells you that are worthless, you can’t do things and it’s the one that demands so much from you and others! It’s the one that needs more and more and more, this can be harmful to your core self esteem as it can behind the need to have loads of sex to feel attractive and make the self judgement that not having sex means you are worthless! That you have to have things from outside yourself to “make” you feel good about yourself! Remember I talked about your inner best friend this can be your ego it can be tamed to support and love you rather than Judge you! Your ego can be one that needs to add 100s of sexy men on facebook to feel worthwhile or the one that supports you and tells you that no matter what you are loved and adored!
I will attempt to be mindful about this! I have been wondering a lot lately about being my authentic self and speaking “my” truth! Now what can this mean? Also how can you or I be our authentic selves?
As a gay man I am fully aware of the labels that we attach to ourselves and to each other, you know bear, cub, otter, twink and muscle Mary to name just a few. What surprises me is how “judgemental” these labels are and how are “restrictive” and “prescriptive” they can be! I was once told I wasn’t hairy enough and too ugly to be a bear or a cub! Despite resonating with that image (mostly) and being attracted (mostly) to men with some meat on them! I will not go into judgement here or analysis to death as to why this has come about! Apart from how “sexualised” our communities can be. This can be both a positive and a negative (that’s another topic I will like to talk about another time)
How does this impact on self growth, on self development and self improvement? Well for being authentic is key here, we need to be able to be our true selves and speak our truth to be able to grow, develop and ultimately get what we want out of life!
Now I feel that these labels we can attach to ourselves do not always best serve ourselves that well and certainly do not support us being authentic or speaking our truths if we “have” to be a certain way to feel that we fit into the gay communities or “gay world”! To act a certain way, have so much sex and with so many men. Because when for whatever reason when that doesn’t happen, we can judge, berate and generally beat ourselves up as no good, not good enough, not bear enough. Not sexy enough etc…… Now by being your authentic self and speaking your truth you can better be your own best friend (remember that one?) Also it doesn’t mean that you can’t hang around or socialise and have sex with other gay men of a certain “image” etc it means that your whole identity and self worth will not be built around having to completely fit in with that!
Be well, Be yourself, Be sexy, Be mindful and remember we are all work in progress
introducing a bit more about what I can do!