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My Past Is Eating Me Alive & I May Be Depressed

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I am 16 year old guy who considers himself to be straight. I know you will probably think I’m some kind of sick weirdo after what I’m about to say, but I have to get it off my chest. I used to have this really weird fetish. I used to go on omegle (online video chat room), look for an older guy (40s-50s), talk dirty in the chat and masturbate while he masturbated. This occurred about 3-4 times. Each time I tried not to show my face on the camera, and I covered my “area” (so the old guy only saw my hand motioning). The last time I did this was about 7 months ago. After doing it that last time, I realized how ****** up and disturbing it was. I don’t know why it turned me on, maybe just because it was out of the ordinary and erotic. I know I’m not gay because I only like girls, and I do not want to be in a relationship with a man. What I did has caused me nonstop anxiety, feelings of guilt, and depression. I now see how weird and wrong it was for me to do what I did, and I know that it will NEVER happen again. I can’t stop seeing myself as a horrible person and a weird sicko. Anytime something good happens in my life now, I feel like I don’t deserve it because of what I did. I feel like any other accomplishments that I have in life are diminished because of this one- time occurrence. Is my integrity as a person affected by what I have done? How can I get over my past? Should I be worrying like this? Do I need to tell my parents about this? Any help would be greatly appreciated.

My Past Is Eating Me Alive & I May Be Depressed

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A.

You may have been driven by curiosity and an arousal to perform sexually in front of a stranger. The arousal often stems from a desire to be watched. What you may be describing is exhibitionism. Exhibitionism typically involves exposing one’s genitals to a stranger. In modern times, this often occurs via the Internet.

You’re not a horrible person nor are you a “sicko.” Some people have a non-dangerous compulsion to show their genitalia to strangers. Some research has also found that it’s natural for men to want to look at other men’s genitalia. It’s not something to feel guilty about.

While your desires might be psychologically explainable, they can lead to serious trouble. There are strict laws against individuals over the age of 18 interacting sexually with individuals under the age of 18. Had you (or the person viewing the webcam) been caught, you could’ve been prosecuted for engaging in unlawful sexual acts, and perhaps labeled a sex offender.

You made a mistake and have since corrected it. When you realized that your behavior was wrong you stopped. You have behaved in a responsible manner. An irresponsible person knows what they are doing is wrong and makes no effort to stop. That is not what happened in your case.

Your guilt over this incident is causing significant emotional distress. It should be addressed in counseling. Ask your parents to assist you in finding a therapist. A therapist could help you deal with your feelings of distress. Counseling is also the ideal place to discuss issues of sexuality. You’ll feel a lot better after talking this over with an objective, nonjudgmental, trained professional who can help ease your distress. Please take care.

Dr. Kristina Randle

My Past Is Eating Me Alive & I May Be Depressed

Kristina Randle, Ph.D., LCSW

Kristina Randle, Ph.D., LCSW is a licensed psychotherapist and Assistant Professor of Social Work and Forensics with extensive experience in the field of mental health. She works in private practice with adults, adolescents and families. Kristina has worked in a large array of settings including community mental health, college counseling and university research centers.

APA Reference
Randle, K. (2018). My Past Is Eating Me Alive & I May Be Depressed. Psych Central. Retrieved on July 16, 2019, from https://psychcentral.com/ask-the-therapist/2015/03/25/my-past-is-eating-me-alive-i-may-be-depressed/
Scientifically Reviewed
Last updated: 8 May 2018
Last reviewed: By a member of our scientific advisory board on 8 May 2018
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