Bungie Jump Relationships – Can’t stay, can’t leave.

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I’d like to run away from you, but if you never found me I would die, 
I’d like to break the chains you put around me, but I know I never will, 
You stay away and all I do is wonder why the hell I wait for you, 
But when did common sense prevail for lovers when we know it never will, 
Impossible to live with you, but I know, I could never live without you, 
For whatever you do, I never, never, never want to be in love with anyone but you.

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David Parker peruses . . . 

How many relationships do you know that constantly break-up, then return to the mire of the codependent malady, a few months later? I call these BUNGIE JUMP Relationships. Can’t Stay. Can’t Leave. Bounce back. Try one more time.

Pop songs have a lyrical tradition of loss not love. We call them LOVE ALBUMS, Romantic Operas to intimate connection of the heart, revelling in heartbreak, not heart-warming mindfulness, or the concept that ‘everything is temporary’. We don’t want to hear that, it must last forever, or not at all.

The projection of fear, loss, low esteem, financial depletion or other such devices can keep you in an unhealthy relationship, even in the workplace.

Listen to this haunting ‘love song’ of entrapment, capture and coda infusion.

Would you call this LOVE?

If you identify with the lyrics, or feel at loss within your relationships, it may be that your emotional intelligences needs re-balancing instead of riding the bungie-jump of fear.

This classic tome comes highly recommended for adjustments.

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Relationship Coaching can stop you jumping without bouncing back.

A FREE INTRODUCTION explains the process with no obligation to continue.

Email a brief history or problem for a no-selling, no obligation, no sign-up FREE 2 hour Introduction or ask for a 30 min Skype with a brief assessment of where you need direction. Any email questions will be answered before a Free Introduction booked. Here to help.

This where you begin to take responsibility for yourself, not your partner.  

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mygaytherapist@yahoo.co.uk

Spit it Out!

Learning to Express Yourself is a Key to Success.

Many people can’t ask for what they want because they don’t know how to express it. I was one of them. Now look at the word ‘express-ing’, it means fast, speedy and direct. As a kid I had a stammer from god knows when till a teenager and dreaded queues in shops and ticket offices. By the time I was asked what I wanted nothing came out but splutter, shame, public humiliation and deep embarrassment, everything except fast, speedy and direct.

davidparker_keepcalm_sept13On top of this I had a nervous squint. I contracted meningitis on the spine when I was 6 months old and over the next 12 years was a frequent visitor to brain damage tests with a final conclusion that I will ‘grow out of it’. Well I did when I discovered alcohol & drugs. This masterful brew gave me confidence, a clear speedy voice, though often sharp and bitchy. In future therapy sessions, I was told it was an act of survival, an old pattern, thinking I could not be heard. Oh and I was ‘a red’, a ginger, an outsider and gay, way before fetish sites put red as a hot topic of sexual attraction. All in all, a teenage nightmare. No wonder I embraced getting ‘out of it’.

We had no knowledge about addictions, codependency or ‘finding yourself’ in self help books in the 70’s, it was all about sexual liberation, learning to express yourself through your body, so I soon got the hang of that. Less talking, less stammering, less nervousness, more action.

This inadvertently led to many years of sexual addiction until a virus took hold of my priorities, being forced to learn how to express myself ‘to serve myself first’, not heed to the demands of others. This aspect of codependency is rife in the gay community and often leads to unsafe sex as people-pleasing leading the way to a man’s zipper, but the desire to be connected, to belong, to seek approval as an act of expression, can leave you short-changed when it comes to emotional satisfaction. Clearing up the mess of others as fixer, or being entangled in a relationship with someone who cannot express themselves via depression, past abuses, alcohol dependency does not bode well in the healthy relationship stakes.

fear-is-in-your-head1Assisting or understanding a partner with these issues, while detaching, in order not to get sucked in, is extremely difficult, but essential in order to manage your own sanity. Learning to say NO more often and ridding yourself of the belief that ‘when you get YOUR needs met, others lose’ is the key to emotional recovery. This may appear selfish in print, and to some unloving, but in reality the biggest aspect of relationship breakdown is ‘ not getting needs met’, because often those needs have failed to be expressed because of ‘harming’ the other person. Not wanting to rock the boat by telling the truth faster creates suppressed anger, game playing, dishonesty and fear. The opposite to love.

When I started a recovery process from active addiction over 30 years ago, I shockingly discovered I was shy. Quite the opposite from the persona I had created. Then I had to learn to communicate verbally & sexually without chemical support, and the stammer came back along with the nervous squint and it felt like I was back at square one, which I was. Back to being the emotional wreck of a teenager with the luggage of 17 years of using.

With self help groups and counselling I managed to explore the reasons, and the lessons of coping with and managing demons like ‘Not being good enough”, “feeling damaged” “not a real man” etc and turn these negative lies into positive statements of truth. In 1984 I began spending every night, for the next 3 years, going to sleep with Louise Hay affirmative tapes on a loop in order to find the real me buried beneath the shames. Then with yogic rebirthing breath work started to express my subconscious emotional fields, until I healed my body and released chronic active hep B from my body in 1996 without medication. That’s a whole story in itself.

davidparker_expressyourself_sept13Eventually the stammer and squint left me, confidence was acquired and I learn’t to ‘tell the truth faster’. For the past 10 years I have travelled the globe every 2 months leading seminars on personal development, holding a room of 30 -50 people for 3 days without a manual or script, just focussing on ‘the NOW’, and allowing things to occur organically. So perseverance paid off. The only way I could express myself in my using days was by being workaholic, by constantly thinking I needed to be in control, while my life was totally out of control. Today I am still clean, sober and Hep B free, long may it continue, a day at a time.

safe_image.phpThis was my monthly piece in HIM-MAGAZINE : http://www.him-magazine.com/2013/09/01/spit-it-out/

‘Fun & Flirty!’

Attitude, the UK gay magazine sold in the nation’s newsagents and supermarkets, recently celebrated their summer issue last year with a poll of the sexiest men by it’s readers, which caused a bit of feather fluffing in the mainstream media. The cause of it was Britain’s 19 year old Olympic poster boy Tom Daley beating ding-dong-daddy David Beckham and the blue-blooded ginger haired Prince Harry to the crown. Anyone that has had the fortune of being one of Daley’s 2.6 million fans on Facebook will know that just 30 seconds after putting up a dripping wet Tom in skimpy speedos, the Facebook “Likes” rack up faster than a junkie finding a vein.

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Twitter and FB during the 2012 London Olympics, were alive whenever he came out of the water after a dive, debatably mincing, but certainly posing and pouting under the shower knowing EXACTLY what he was doing. The epitome of ‘fun & flirty’.

For some reason his Facebook fan base consists only of pubescent teenage girls and wet mouthed gay men who leave lascivious messages on his wall. Tom totally ignores them and puts up another Instagram of him holding a kitten. This was some sort of ‘code’ to indicate his ‘sensitivity’ but I have to say these constant kitten pics are destroying my sexual fantasies of a man with a perfect taut tanned body, dark hairy legs and a happy trail. The kitten won him over, the bitch, and it knows it. Anyways he’s OUT now and wonderfully so. Unlike much older celebrity gayers who wait till their career dives down, Daley threw caution to the wind in early golden career.

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But the real surge of fantasy is the sexual menagerie of Daley with Beckham & Prince Harry together. Who will top? Now that would be FUN to watch! So is it a twink, an inked daddy or an aristocrat that sends you sexting?

Way before social media, smartphone technology and dating sites like grindr, flirting was an acquired art face to face, full of bravado or embarrassment, whereas online dirty flirty sexting allows you to go the extra inch without fearing rejection, but for some the problem arises when they actually turn up and the projection of rejection rises to full hilt.

Since the advent of online dating, people have got out of the habit of flirting face to face, understanding body chemistry and seeing the whole package, so to speak. Now we are used to seeing David Beckham’s package in his pants and Toms tiny speedos but if some doppelgängers walked down the street, would you feel good enough to bat above your average and flirt, or would you feel not good enough?

Low esteem, chem use, not fitting in and maybe living without employment, are the core seeds of the gay malady that ‘dare not speak it’s name: social phobia. Looking at all those circuit party boys, buffed or bearlike, the perception is that everyone is having a fabulous time except you. This is not so.

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Many are cruising around with sub-conscious thoughts like “I am unworthy, ugly, stupid, not good enough, big enough, smart enough, whatever.” Chemical and alcohol use can help to hide these subconscious wanderings, but when the balloons get popped you’re pooped, back into a shell. But flirting with chems as a companion is fun and allows you to take emotional risks, bypassing those nasty negative mantras in your head, but in the end, you have to face the music (or the date) emotionally naked, and that’s the real fear.

Because the world is now performance and target led, it’s easy to forget that shyness, whether connected to social phobia or not, is seen as charming, sexy and a big selling point, to those cruising you. Not everyone needs or wants a confident date, but what they do seek is an authentic one, and this is where flirting online can create impossible illusions, a bit like Daley, Beckham and Harry in a circle jerk. It’s just not going to happen. So don’t big up the flirting too much, unless you can deliver. Just be yourself and you will find that authenticity is the hottest drug to neck.

Recovery, in the broadest sense, means doing everything that is unfamiliar to you, in order to achieve emotional balance, so if you are hogging the flirting limelight online, log out and go walkabout on the streets, in clubs, bars or social groups. This will get you into the habit of interacting with authenticity again and your natural instincts that being online can hide. The kind of things that can excite at first glance in real life, like hair trapped under a wristwatch, a raspy voice, dry humour, smooth arms or an unexpected tattoo gaping from a sleeve. Everything online profiles don’t pick up. Older gay men will remember anonymous street cruising, turn back glances, flirting with the fruit stall boy, or a smile on a bus from afar. These things can make a heart beat and although they may not create instant results, at least you have turned up and delivered. Not many can say that online.

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This post of mine was first published in the August issue of HIM Magazine 2013 – for the Man who invests in Himself http://www.him-magazine.com/2013/08/01/sexting-sexy-men/

Queer Happiness

abbatin2” You don’t know the meaning of true happiness until you hear 30,000 Gay Men recognise the opening bars of Dancing Queen “, so wrote a str8 journalist for the London Evening Standard, reporting on the Opening Ceremony of the GAY GAMES in Amsterdam in 1998. You can imagine the rush, the sense of belonging, the HAPPINESS in those brief riff seconds of connection. Clubland, Disco and secret nightclubs have always been our haven. The chance to be ourselves, to be authentic, to be free, to be queerly relaxing with our own kind. Dancing Queen by Abba certainly captured the essence of underground popper sexuality, way before ‘hands in the air’ circuit party chems, became the norm.

Some of us recall the re-emergence of the word ‘Queer’ in mid-AIDS politics in the early 90’s, the snatching back of a mid-twentieth century term of attack. Now post-millennium the word QUEER has a changed yet again into a term embracing all sexualities and genders, indicating alternative, creative and avant grade. I was called ‘a queer’ at school, or an ‘OMO’ so I was queer before ‘gay’ became commonplace and ironically both words mean ‘happy’. One of the things I hear time and time again from gay men is ” I don’t fit in”. They answer to that is ‘you don’t need to, in order to be happy’.
 
 
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In the UK, the hot TV programme mid-nineties was ‘Queer as Folk’ a radical, tell it like it is, drama series. In Northern England, they still say ” there’s nowt as queer as folk”, as they did the previous century, because the word queer meant ‘odd, unconventional or eccentric’. At the same time as this trailblazing show, I was knee deep in a new book by Dr David Weeks and Jamie James, the first scientific study of eccentric behaviour called ECCENTRICS. The conclusion of this study was that odd ‘queer’ people were the happiest people on earth because they didn’t care what people thought. No shame, no fitting in and certainly no people-pleasing. We have a lot to learn from them. At the last chapter I switched from seeing my queer sensibility as an asset, not a cross to bear as an outcast. I was particularly taken with Ann Atkin from Devon England who not only had 7,500 gnomes in her garden, but dressed as one on a daily basis. She was as happy as Larry, supermarket shopping with red cheeks and a pointy hat. Good for her! Dr Weeks concluded that eccentrics were nonconforming, creative, idealistic, aware from early childhood that they were different, intelligent, and in possession of a mischievous sense of humour. Well as I ticked all the boxes, I went from queer to eccentric and back to queer, I saw it as the same in the end. Living queer without performance breeds happiness.
 
tumblr_m8q0hmFf1d1rbkz31o1_1280Armed with bravery and my new eccentric weapon of freedom I could be whoever I wanted to be. From that point to now I recognised my eccentricity as vital, my different-ness, and my somewhat rebellious lack of desire to fit in as an asset. Masculine fashions change anyway. The streets of East London particularly, are paved with the ‘new queers’, inked skinny bitches who refuse the mantle of porn masculinity preferring instead the odd, the punk and the scruff. Funny how these guys will be cloned into the norm sooner or later before the next batch of queer look appears. Happiness, and the experience of it, is relative, and as diverse as our LGBTQ community. It is no companion to shame or apology, for accepting who are, results in a happier disposition. Coming out as queer, eccentric, gay, bi or whatever word you use, also means being as brave as Ann Atkin in her pointy hat, in cultures, communities,and churches. It’s a brave but essential road to walk, but remember those liberating queers that walked before you, respectful head held high, learn from that. Gay marriage is not for all, or even being in a relationship for that matter, but real happiness, queer or not  is being content with what you HAVE got, rather than what you haven’t. Truth, authenticity and loving yourself  exactly as you are, is a great boyfriend to be happy with. Do you walk this road?
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Checking out queer films I came across this blog of listed queer films, if queer history interests you. At the time of Abba, men cruised the streets, not on-line, and when the concept of AIDS was sci-fi we used instinct, not profiles. I was particularly impressed with his opening quote ” I’m bored and depressed with today’s gay image of marriage, adopted babies and content bourgeoise living. Blandly masculine, domestic and inoffensive is the new gay stereotype and I can’t relate anymore. This list is a tribute to tough queer thugs with switchblades, bisexual hustlers, sissy villains, killer drag queens and true outcasts, films that got me through my years as a sexually confused teen. I’ve also included some (occasionally offensive) homo horror for the hell of it “.
 
 

this blog first appeared on my regular RELATIONSHIP GUYD column on http://guyspy.com

 

Underground Bookshops, clubs and thinking . . .

Have you noticed how self help books assume you are heterosexual? Books from Waterstone’s on THE RULES, THE SECRET and Creating Perfect Adult Relationships never seem to ever have case studies or direction other than straight white. It’s how coffee used to be. No gays, no bi-curious, no swingers, no trannies and certainly no fetish. The attraction of London as a living vibrant destination is that sexuality can be observed, checked out and explored without a blink of an eyelid. The sons of Catholic Europe reside here, safe in the knowledge that they won’t bump into the priest, cousin Mary, or mother’s judging eye when it comes to exploring sexuality. Many of the gay bars and meeting places in London are staffed by East Europeans, Latinos and Orientals escaping the torment of sexually acting out in their birth country where it is still a criminal offence or a shame based notion. They have not come here to learn English, they soon realised that the only way to escape suppressed regimes was to learn English BEFORE they arrived. No point in waiting till they got here, for the net has flashed on-screen the freedoms in London, Brighton or Manchester, and the need to communicate in fluent English. Why live in Poland or Serbia and experience rejection when thanks to Easyjet they can find freedom to be themselves and who they want to be in London’s cauldron of possibilities?

When I came out in 1967 my ‘lifestyle’ was called ‘The twilight world of homosexual shame’ by tabloids and was always connected to scandal and secret double lives. Thankfully we have moved on and no longer criminals. The European Union now promotes equality but many LGBTQ (Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender & Queer) people do not experience the equality promised in law because religion still dominates most of these European countries. Tired of being the only one in the village, it’s the same for straights interested in non- conformist lifestyles, be it Goth, seriously single or curiously metrosexual, they move on, move out and find their authentic selves. London is not the only anonymous place to explore sexuality but no city in Europe has as much volume, scope, dress code clubs, freedom to act out fetish, dress up or find a sex partner in 10 minutes on the net. London is so vast that people of any sexuality can tap in their post code on a mobile app and be sitting on someone’s sofa at the end of their road before the kettle boils. That’s Grindr for you – which brings me to this week’s theme ‘Look around, look UNDERGROUND…’

Our conscious lives are run by underground subconscious thinking and because of manners, religion and other power based doctrines, sexuality is encased underground too. As self help gurus write about the requirement for relationship, they rarely take into account underground lifestyles and yet underground – with the power of the net – is becoming more mainstream and fetish wear more acceptable. Clubs like HARD ON in London provide activity, entertainment and interaction with like minded beings and yet if participants spoke about these preferences on mainstream personal development trainings I doubt whether the trainers would know how to handle it or offer experienced direction. This is why LGBTQ personal development groups and trainings are vital. Gay male lifestyles and relationship structures are totally different from lesbian couplings – why bunk us in the same bed? Many straight couples enjoy swinging parties, dogging and explore non-conformist sex with the ferocity of gay men on chems, yet rarely do I hear anyone discuss this openly in mainstream workshops and seminars I have attended. Everyone is on best behaviour.

It’s a brave soul that mentions porn on a training course – a hundred eyes will follow you round the room. Last year I led a training weekend on Addictions in a North European Country and a man admitted to the gathering that his great addiction was masturbation. I was amazed by the guys honesty and told him so because in a room of 50 people he was one of only 6 men. Honesty is not always welcome, but he plugged most people in by mentioning the unmentionable. No one hugged him after his share. Throwing yourself into fetish clubs is an exciting way to break boundaries within yourself, your thinking and your parents’ thinking. We all do things our mates know nothing about. However while exploring limits, learn to be clear, avoid people pleasing and say NO when you mean it. GAY’S THE WORD Bookshop near Kings Cross/Russell Square has a vast stock of books on LGBTQ Sexuality and Relationship titles – it’s a good place to read up on fetish and underground ideas.

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A good exercise to focus on over a 10 minute period is to dig underground and reveal to another human being or to your diary or the higher gods if you are spiritually inclined, the exact nature of your sexual desires. Check out the web, your partners’ desires or favourite fetish. It’s good to talk, then shamelessly GO FOR IT.