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Book Hiding from Myself: A Memoir by Bryan Christopher (2016-02-11)


Hiding from Myself: A Memoir by Bryan Christopher (2016-02-11)

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    Available in PDF - DJVU Format | Hiding from Myself: A Memoir by Bryan Christopher (2016-02-11).pdf | Language: UNKNOWN
    Bryan Christopher(Author)

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Review Text

  • By Chad Estes on February 24, 2015

    I'm writing my review in the context of having spent years as a Christian pastor. Bryan sent me his book a couple of years ago to read as he knew I reviewed a lot of books. He memoir captivated me and I've read it through twice now. Bryan's story covers a decade of his life fully committed to purge himself of his apparent sexual orientation. He even manages to get a job at the Playboy Mansion, working his ways into the holy of holies - Hugh's bedroom. "I am in Hugh Hefner's closet, drowning in a sea of silk pajamas." And I wonder what Bryan's next sentence, his reality, will mean to the mainstream, Christian mindset at all: "My objective at the Playboy Mansion: to be tempted and to stumble would be a miracle."When your religion pushes you to the place where you think that humping like a bunny, with a Bunny would be a God-given miracle, well, then you know that your religion has led you astray. So then what? Bryan presses forward with the hope of a 180° turn, now with the help of a professional counselor, but has to admit, "Psychology would point to my theology as the root of my pathology."In the words of Bryan's Jewish counselor, "You are a case study of what happens when we cut ourselves off from feeling our true feelings. As I've said many times before, the judgement of your innate impulse and the way you punish yourself for not being able to live up to the expectations of your family, friends, and church are leaving scars. And until you learn to accept yourself, and all the parts, without this awful judgment you attach, you will continue to suffer and self destruct..."Seriously, how screwed up is it that we religious leaders, in our well-intentioned efforts to `help' someone, have actually been leading them to where they are self-destructing? In Bryan's life it led him to the point of suicide. His quote is one that I've heard from several people and read in too many news headlines: "[I have a] head full of questions all pointing to a fundamental truth: I'd rather die than be gay."In Hiding From Myself, Bryan shares a decade of his life, starting in college, feverishly jumping through all the straight hoops available to him. It is impossible, for me, not to see myself in this story. I could have been his best friend, college roommate, accountability prayer partner, Promise Keeper buddy, professional counselor, personal pastor, or his co-worker. I am left to wonder where he would have written about me and what difference I would have made.Here is why I would like all my friends, especially my Christian ones to read "Hiding From Myself." Bryan doesn't attempt to fix anyone's theology. He doesn't come across as angry and he doesn't have an axe to grind. He simply paints a very real picture of what life was like for him struggling with his sexual identity in the context of his Christian world and worldview. His experience and his perspective is valid and important. And for those of us who are heterosexual and followers of Jesus we've been tasked to love - which means authentic empathy - which may mean that sometimes we need to shut our mouths, still our hearts, and really listen.For those of my friends who don't have a religious background, reading Bryan's book will help you understand what it is like for a kid who fears they are gay to grow up in the typical, Christian experience of the past couple of decades. It may help you have more compassion for their journey.Bryan has offered a personal story that encompasses what life looks like from inside the Christian world when you fear that you are gay. He is honest, real, and raw (as well as a damn good writer). He has captivated me both times I have read his story and I am a better man, and a better Christian, having read his memoir.Finally, Bryan's testimony begs an audience of those of us who have made sexuality one of our political and religious platforms. We have many Christian brothers and sisters who identify in the LGBT realities. If we aren't loving enough to really get intimate with their stories than it is we who are hiding from ourselves.

  • By gayle on November 2, 2013

    This book certainly shows how homosexuality can grip someone's life. But it is unnecessarily rude. There is too much unnecessary and vivid detail. As the author tries to get out of this lifestyle, he lives and works with homosexual people - it seems obvious that this is a poor decision. Despite lots of counselling, he doesn't seem to have had GOOD counsel. It doesn't have a happy ending, and at times, the book is very frustrating. I think its certainly not the book you need to read for an insight in how to help homosexual people.

  • By BB on December 9, 2014

    My only reason for such a low rating is for the simple fact it was marketed as not being a pro gay read. However, I did find myself completing the book hoping for a straight ending just to find it 100% homosexual. Can't argue with his statements on the love of Christ. His love covers both male and female. His love also covers the homosexual, just doesn't promote or uphold any homosexual acts as the word simply points it out as a shameful abomination. This was an attempt to justify a life long emotion.

  • By Adrienne on July 25, 2014

    An interesting story, but the author uses too many clichés, metaphors and stock phrases. In addition, there are so many typos and grammatical errors, it was painful to read.

  • By Guest on July 22, 2013

    I thought this book was incredible. As an Independent and not religious person, I struggled at times with the fundamental Christian environment and beliefs that he was surrounded by for years and years. It was so hard to read about how much he hated himself for something he could not change. I strongly suggest reading and absorbing this book and it's message. I started reading it the first night and just couldn't put it down until my Kindle battery finally died! I finished it the next day with tears in my eyes. I was so moved by it that I have recommended it to all of my friends. I am so proud of him and I wish him all the love and happiness he can possibly have. With how far the world has come with equality, this type if story should not be repeating in society, yet its an everyday occurance still. Our purpose on earth is not to judge others. Never have I ever seen someones sexual preference change someone else's life in a way that harms anyone negatively. The statements made to him throughout the book against "gays" broke my heart. Everyone deserves to feel the amazing power of LOVE! I commend Bryan for sharing with the world his journey through a time of self discovery and I hope it gets spread far and wide and reaches the people who need it the most. You are a brave, funny, smart and wonderful man and I thank you for letting me and the rest of the world see how life really is out there.

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