We are on a journey of self-discovery to explore and address underlying issues and embrace our authentic masculinity. The core of this journey we call “M.A.N.S. Work.”
Masculinity, Authenticity, Needs fulfillment, Surrender: A path to becoming a new man
In many ways, we’ve found that SSA can be our teacher, if we are willing to listen to what it has to teach us about ourselves and any unmet needs, unhealed wounds, or other unfinished “work.”
In fact, we have discovered that there is much that is positive and healthy about our same-sex attractions that we can embrace.
We may have a natural drive to pursue or develop:
- Meaningful friendships and brotherly love
- Connection, belonging, and community
We may naturally be more
- Creative and artistic
- Spiritual (especially when it comes to calling on God to help us through this confusion!)
- Emotional and sensitive
- Empathic and relational
At the same time, we recognize our need to surrender all that is negative or unhealthy about our same-sex attractions — oftentimes such things as:
- Obsessions, addictions or harmful behaviors
- Emotional enmeshments, co-dependency, or other unhealthy relationships
- Sexualized envy
- Sexual “acting out” (acting from our internal wounds, emotional triggers, and unmet needs)
- Self-hate or shame
The core of this journey we call “M.A.N.S. Work.” The acronym stands for Masculinity, Authenticity, Needs Fulfillment and Surrender — four areas of inner healing and personal growth that can potentially bring any man closer to wholeness and peace.
- Connecting to our internal sense of masculinity — a core, intrinsic awareness that we are in fact “man enough.”
- Bonding as brothers with other men in deeper, healthier, more meaningful ways — and coming to know as never before that we truly belong in the world of men.
- Developing healthier relationships with women as “other” while remaining firmly grounded in our “golden” masculinity.
- Getting real. Becoming vulnerable and authentic with ourselves and others who deserve our trust.
- Feeling our feelings. Breaking through shame and self-hate and instead connecting authentically with core emotions that lead us to peace and joy.
- Healing old wounds and growing beyond past hurts to become our healthiest, most authentic selves.
- Uncovering our true needs that may be underpinning and feeding our emotional pain, lusts, unhealthy relationships, or self-destructive thoughts and behaviors.
- Taking the risks to meet these needs in authentic, healthy ways — especially core needs for love and acceptance, community and belonging, and self-acceptance and self-compassion.
- Releasing internal resistance to changing old patterns or to living our lives differently.
- Becoming willing to turn our will and our lives over to God. Asking him to change our hearts so that, more and more, we want what he wants.
- Releasing our attachments to harmful or unhealthy thoughts, beliefs, judgments, feelings, impulses, behaviors, habits, and relationships. In particular, surrendering same-sex lust. And releasing our resentments and becoming ready to forgive.
- Finding meaning and even a higher purpose or calling through this journey, as we shift our inward focus outward, toward serving God and others.