It’s taken me a long time to understand how to come to grips with the loneliness we feel as men who struggle with same-sex attraction. I can’t expect my experience is quite like every other guy whose reading this, but I’ve seen it in a lot of guys I’ve talked with.

Loneliness for men who struggle with same-sex attraction reaches in all directions in the ways that we want to feel loved. For many, we feel like our love with God is hindered by our inability to be free from sin and waywardness. For some, our hearts long for the love of a woman but feel like we’ll never be “normal” enough to be in a relationship with one. For others, we seek the love and care of the men around us through deep friendships but never feel satisfied by not acting on our affections. For the men here who struggle with SSA, we can be constantly reminded of our loneliness everywhere we look.  

Plus, on top of all of that, Valentine’s Day is coming! It’s the holiday to find true love and celebrate it! No one wants to feel alone on Valentine’s Day!

So, where do men with SSA go when they feel they need to frantically find love? I can only speak for myself, but I will admit that I have often gone to all the wrong places. Days like Valentine’s Day, with the added pressure to find your soul mate and have carefree, perfect sex, are often propped up and only become disappointments when their lofty goals aren’t met. Our SSA can fuel our urge to indulge in fantasy in times like these. During the red and pink days of February, who wants to be alone when they can pretend they’re not? Men on your computer screens provide a false sense of companionship during lonely times, seeming to fill the void when we feel most isolated.

I’m not saying this is an easy choice to avoid. I’ve been there. But I think there is a better way to view provision for loneliness in times like this before Valentines.

Think about the people God HAS put into your life. What blows me away is that with all of the loneliness that we can suffer through the brokenness of our SSA, we don’t deserve any of God’s mercy. Some of his mercy, I think, is displayed in the fact that we are never truly as alone as we may feel.

Take a moment and evaluate the men and women in your life who you can thank God for. Time-crunching bosses, soft-spoken neighbors, overbearing parents, the person around you on the subway- God has given us, as men who suffer with SSA, the experience of loneliness not so that we’d be forced to accept our fantasy worlds of porn but so that we’d become compassionate and outgoing toward the living, breathing, real world around us.