For as long as I can remember, I have been afraid to look another man – especially a good-looking one - in the eyes for fear of what he might see in mine. There was always the worry about whether they might see through my mask, whether they could tell I am attracted to men. Or if my gaze lingered too long, would they think I am coming on to them?
The result? I have gone through my adult life not making any meaningful eye contact with men, lowering my eyes, avoiding eye contact, being ashamed, constantly on guard, feeling less of a man, less of a person. I am tired of feeling ashamed! I hate how this has made me feel for longer than I want to think about.
So, as part of my effort to embrace who I am, I have made a conscious effort to stop doing that.
Now, for example, when I go into the dry cleaners, I make direct eye contact with the cute young guy at the register. I am friendly. He smiles. I smile back. I feel like a person – a person I can like. Same with the good-looking guy at the grocery store check-out, etc. And of course, I’m not talking lascivious looks or anything like that, but just making eye contact and not being afraid, not being ashamed, not being paranoid. Affirming who I am.
Can anyone out there relate to this, or am I just weird?