Welcome Rebel Prince!
ÃƒÆ’Ã¢â‚¬Å¡Ãƒâ€š ÃƒÆ’Ã¢â‚¬Å¡Ãƒâ€š No, you are not the first or only gay Orthodox poster on this forum. I, too, am gay and Orthodox. However, I hope I may offer the following suggestions:
ÃƒÆ’Ã¢â‚¬Å¡Ãƒâ€š ÃƒÆ’Ã¢â‚¬Å¡Ãƒâ€š 1. Don't let being "gay" define who you are as a human being. There's more to life than that. I am attracted to the same sex. I admit that. But that doesn't define who I am. Its a passion I suffer from. Put it in perspective.
ÃƒÆ’Ã¢â‚¬Å¡Ãƒâ€š ÃƒÆ’Ã¢â‚¬Å¡Ãƒâ€š 2. If we don't chose to be gay (and I don't think we do), how can we possibly have any "pride" in being gay? One has reasonable pride for things one has attained and accomplished in life. If we simply awaken to the fact that we suffer from same sex attraction during puberty, how can we be proud of that? To me it makes no more sense than being "proud" of being left-handed, blue-eyed, diabetic etc. This doesn't mean we have to hate ourselves for being gay. I think such an attitude is very unhealthy. But I think it is best to have a dispassionate and sober attitude toward being gay.
3. I also think we gay people must admit that on SOME level we have an affliction. Something went wrong somewhere. I have no idea what causes homosexuality, but if everyone were like us, the human race would die out. You don't have to torment yourself with guilt over that. I don't. But at some level something's gone wrong. I think we gay people honestly need to admit that. Something about us is profoundly abnormal.
4. This may seem a nuanced point, but the Orthodox Church does NOT condemn gay people. Now, there might be some homophobic Orthodox that do. You need to distinguish between Protestant fundamentalists here and Orthodox Christianity. The Orthodox Church does not teach (nor has it ever taught) that God hates those who suffer from same sex attraction. Please get that clear! God loves us just as much as He loves everyone else. God does not hate those who suffer from the sinful passions. And all human beings have some sinful passions that they struggle with. The nuanced point here is that the Orthodox Church will not give its blessing upon those that engage in same sex PRACTICE. In other words, the Orthodox Church does NOT condemn us for our sexual orientation. We can't control that. That comes from deep within us. We are attracted to whom we are attracted. Period. But we CAN indeed choose whom we will have sexual union with. That does lie within our power. And that's all the Orthodox Church asks us to do as gay people: be continent. Be chaste.
5. And remember, if from time to time, we fall into patterns of gay sex, it is simply the best thing to pick ourselves up, avail ourselves of the Sacrament of Repentance, and begin walking the path of chastity again anew. It's really the only way.