Express your emotions despite fear and shyness to tell the difference between sexual desire and true love.
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Expressing your emotions openly and fully, especially emotions of love, desire and admiration, will change your life. As gay men, we are taught by our parents and society to be quiet and to hide our sexuality.
When we keep our emotions to ourselves, we are unable to fully understand what we are feeling.
The result is that we not only hide our sexuality but also we hide how we feel inside towards each other. And because healthy relationships need healthy expression of one’s feelings, the biggest breakthrough in any gay man’s life will be more frequent expression of his emotions to others, especially emotions of love and desire.
When we keep our emotions to ourselves, we are unable to fully understand what we are feeling. This is how we often develop strong feelings to other gay men even thought “they make no sense”.
Here is how it works: a feeling starts out inside our body. Then, with language, the feeling is connected to the mind. To the degree that we talk about our feelings with others, we can connect our mind to the meaning of our feelings. Accurate connection between the feeling and its meaning takes away confusion and anxiety and we end up feeling integrated: whole, balanced and at peace.
Without expressing our emotions, we feel our feelings inside, but only partially, because in the absence of accurate expression of our feelings, our mind has no opportunity to “see” what we are feeling and we end up anxious and in some cases depressed.
Our mind is the primary tool for communication with our lovers and other gay men. The mind creates the meaning around every emotion we feel. The original meaning for our emotions is usually highly inaccurate and subjective – this is why expressing the emotion with words gives us a chance to correct it and integrate it with our identity, our values and goals in life.
If you have ever seen a psychotherapist, the first thing he will do is to ask you about how you feel so that you can begin your integration of feelings and the mind. This is the basis for healthy psychology.
To experience this “shift”, full verbal expression of the feeling to another person is necessary, otherwise you may be “stuck” feeling love for someone you don’t care about..When we feel love to another gay man but do not express it, we run the risk of inaccurate interpretation of that feeling. Often, in the absence of full and open expression of a feeling, we tell ourselves that we feel love, but right after expressing it – we discover that we don’t even like the person and that “all it is” is a feeling of sexual desire without any ingredients of romantic love.
To experience this “shift”, full verbal expression of the feeling to another person is necessary, otherwise you may be “stuck” feeling love for someone you don’t care about.
Our minds use language to interact with emotions. The more we speak about how we feel, the more accurate we become about naming our feelings and experiencing their meanings. This is the foundation for self-awareness. As time passes by, with frequent expression of love, admiration and desire we calibrate our feelings to their meanings and learn about which feelings mean love and which feelings mean sexual desire – and how to know the difference.
Without verbal expression, any feeling can be labeled as love because of its intensity instead of its meaning and this is how most gay men today “fall in love” only to find out it was just a feeling of sexual desire.