I attended my gay dads group last night. It was a wonderful experience of sharing, caring and support. I really enjoy the men that I have grown close to and the stories we have shared. I hope that I can make it again sometime again in the future. With me moving it will become difficult to see these fine men again.
In this group we talk about guilt, shame, celebration, relationships, health, support, love, regret, loneliness, hurt, anger, sorrow, religion, divorce, marriage, happiness, and a myriad of other topics. The rules are confidentiality and to be respectful of others. There was a dozen men there last night and it was an exceptional meeting.
I am most impressed with the openness of everyone, their ability be non-judgmental, and their appreciation of differences. I came into the group with tons of baggage. What I found is that their were some men with similar traits and experiences that could empathize, love and encourage. I am deeply grateful for each of these men and the positive influence they have had on my life and John's.
Some weeks there may be a new man at group to scope things out.....try to find a fit and help. Sometimes they keep coming, sometimes we never see them again. I am gratified to see those that return. I enjoy seeing their journey and reaping from their own feelings and experiences. I am also saddened by those that I never see again. I think of the guilt, anger, rage, loneliness, thoughts of ending ones life that I experienced and think that these men might be similar. It angers me that their situation, society and homophobia has given them a sense of hopelessness. It is NOT a place I want to frequent ever again.....and wish that others did not have to trod that same path.
People need to have more compassion about them, so people that find themselves in difficult situations like mine are not driven to suicide. Weekly I read of someone that has taken their life from being bullied, belittled and/or mocked. It is a shame that death is an option considered and taken. Instead....the solution is to fix these "unnatural" feelings. To deny people honest feelings and expression.....to repress, condone, abhor, close the feelings of the individual for "normal expectations". The system is messed up.....I for one an tired of it and will continue to advocate for change!