Runyon Canyon before dawn. 6 people 4 dogs-including my own.
At dawn there is nobody to objectify. There are no model/actor/waiters jogging along the dusty paths, their tight abs begging to be admired.
The only man with his shirt removed was an elderly Russian man stretching before the rising sun.
Since I last blogged 3 years ago so much has happened. My Film Dorian Gray came and went. I moved from Hollywood into a large, rambling house in Malibu then moved back to Hollywood again. I succumbed to a dog, then another. I stayed put in LA for three years waiting for the promise of adventure and big money but none came.
The adventures I expected were film related, but when the adventure finally came 6 months ago it was TV that called, the worst kind of TV. The kind I never dreamed I would be part of. When opportunity calls in a city geared to entertainment who am I to look a gift horse in the mouth?
Reality TV is plagued by inarticulate, orange, primped and prone to excessive dramatic exposition. Highly regarded by the masses usually ignored by people like me-I still don’t own a television. An email arrives one day wondering if I might be appropriate for a show about sex addiction.
Looking at earlier blogs it is now apparent that I was gripped by sexual compulsion. Hook ups, intrigue, pornography, excessive masturbation, etc. etc. I was fast becoming a parody of THAT gay man, who in is 40’s, should certainly know better. Trading a life of intimacy and love for the merest possible moment with many men and some women.
I have never been shy of owning up to my frailties. I spoke openly about my drinking and drug taking that caused me to get sober some 12 years ago. I had habitually written the most terrible truths about myself. For the longest time, however, I had reserved my startling insight for others and been unable to tell the truth about the fact that was now totally defining my life: I could not say no to any opportunity that came my way of a sexual nature. Increasingly I was plagued with shame, isolation and self-doubt.
The house in Malibu imprisoned me, the Internet made me lazy and self obsessed. I looked, day after day, at the same Internet sites. Like an alcoholic drinking at home alone I could not persuade myself to leave the house and live the life I had committed to when I put down the booze and the drugs years before. I stopped living any kind of reasonable life.
The sites usually included scenes where straight men performed sex acts with each other for gay men to videotape.
They became a cast of friendly faces who would go on holiday with one another before cumming over each other. The men in these videos were ‘regular guys’ ‘straight men doing not so straight things’ they would be interviewed about their straightness before performing acts of unspeakable homosexuality.
I began to question why I was watching these images. What I was learning about men together from these images and increasingly began to doubt myself for watching. Watching at any time of day or night. Watching, hoping that new characters would be introduced like to a soap opera. Watching and wondering and longing.
As time passed and the weeks and months and years flew by trapped in the beautiful house I finally admitted that I had a problem and decided to get some help. The help was swift and sure. It came from other men and women similarly trapped and shamed. It came with almost immediate results. I was immediately liberated from the shackles of active sexual compulsion. Liberated but not cured. The lure of the Internet, of the flirtation, the seduction is more powerful than any drug. Managing sexual compulsion is like managing an eating disorder or compulsively spending money. The solution for sex addiction is sex. The solution for an eating disorder is food. A healthy relationship with food or sex or money for an addict like me is not easy.
6 months after I sought help the invitation came from Dr Drew to appear on his sex rehab show and after a great deal of trepidation I said yes to an experience that would change my life.