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Help with self esteem issues as they relate to sex

So time and time again I find myself plagued with this similar issue: low self esteem.

It is actually quite funny because on the outside and to nearly everyone close to me, I am this great, successful, confident guy, but on the inside this is not always the case.

I guess here is the main problem I am faced with: I am a 20 something, been out for 7 years, and been active in the gay scene since. I have had many relationships, and even more hookups. I am a very attractive guy and never have a hard time going home with the guy I have my eye on. Obviously this in itself is not the problem. Where it gets bad is relationships. I have had many, some short, some up to 1.5 years, and have been very committed to these guys. At the same time I often find myself cheating or having indiscretions outside of the relationship. How self esteem comes into this is that growing up I was always the last kid to be chosen to play sports, never had a lot of friends, and was a bit of a loner nerdy kid. What I seem to think is that the acceptance that I am now able to get from people through sex is something I am trying to use to overpower deeper feelings of low self esteem that plague me.

It is becoming a problem because I have recently met the man of my dreams who I definitely see a long future with. Knowing that, I want to be with him and do what I can for the relationship. But as we live in different places at the moment, not having him near allows my mind to stray and when I have former hookups or boyfriends contact me and talk about sexual situations, I will stray and have a quick go around and be done. I am not seeking these things out, but those aces in the hole that are always there and keep coming up make it challenging and hard for me to resist, even though the guy I am dating now is far more attractive and I have a very deep connection with. But what it seems is that once someone who I sorta know like this approaches me and shows me attention, I cling to it, and I really think it has something to do with the self esteem issues I talk about.

Part of this is venting, I know, but at the same time I need some thought, some tips. Has anyone dealt with something like this? There are a lot of levels to it I think, but I keep pointing back to me fighting my deep inner self esteem issues, that really shouldn't be there and I'm not sure why they are.
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replied June 15th, 2010
Extremely eHealthy
9 times out of 10 sabotaging a relationship is a red flag for abbandonment in your past. Did you lose someone close to you? Parent divorced or a close relative that died? Did you have an especially messy break-up when you were very young?
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replied June 16th, 2010
Yeah, right during/ prior to my coming out my parent got divorced where a mistress was involved bla bla. With things changing with me, I never really processed it and just ignored and moved on.
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replied June 16th, 2010
Extremely eHealthy
I'm not saying that's it but it's certainly something you'd want to look closer at with a therapist. When people you depend on emotionally leave you it just makes you avoid becoming emotionally Dependant on others.
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