Ask Jake

I like all of Aaron Schock’s thirst traps. Does that make me a horrible person?

Hey Jake,

I’m one of the 47,000+ people who follows Aaron Schock on Instagram. When Queerty was reporting on him a while back, I read every article.  The man is a hot mess. Emphasis on the “hot.” Now, I get it. He’s awful. Not only did he do harmful things to LGBTQ people when he was in office, but he seems like a real narcissist who’s incapable of self-reflection. Which is why it brings me great distress to admit… He’s totally my type. (Minus his political leanings.) You can’t deny he has an amazing body. And his face isn’t bad either. When his nudes leaked, I’ll admit, I peeked. I would never in a million years date him, but if he tapped me on Grindr, I’d tap back. And if he wanted to hookup, I probably would, but I would NOT tell my friends about it. Does this make me a bad person?

Totally Schocked At Myself

Dear Totally Schocked As Yourself,

Physical attraction is physical attraction, plain and simple. Sure, sometimes a person who we might have otherwise thought of as super-hot can become less attractive once you get to know them, their views, or what they stand for. But other times, that’s simply not possible. We are biological creatures, after all, and there are certain prototypes that get those hormones raging.

You’re right. There’s no denying Aaron Schock has a great physical physique… if you’re into that sort of thing. The washboard abs, the defined chest, the square jaw, the handsome face. And there’s no shame in finding him attractive, as that’s out of your control.

That said, I would like to add a caveat here. While you can’t control that you find attractive, you can control whether to follow him on Instagram or whether to hook up with him, should he hit you up. Know that by doing those things, you’re agreeing to give him the validation that some people, especially people from the LGBTQ community, feel he may not deserve.

A lot of people would probably say that, after years of opposing gay rights in Congress, you giving him what he so desperately seeks (read: attention) may be sending a message that “everything is forgiven.” Sure, maybe having some compassion can be awarded here, but simply caving into his thirst traps might be indicating that not only is his deplorable past forgotten, but it really doesn’t matter because he’s hot.

Is that something you really want to perpetuate? Do you want to let pure unadulterated lust override your sense of decency and morality?

As evolved humans, we do have the capacity to not always act on our lustful desires. Maybe this is an instance where admiring from afar is okay, or even engaging in a little fantasy from time to time (Aaron Schock role plays, anyone?). But before you actually interact with the guy–and, yes, “liking” his Instagram posts counts as interacting–ask yourself, “is he truly worth it?”

Jake Myers is a Licensed Marriage and Family Therapist, and the Founder of Gay Therapy Space, the first online therapy platform for and by the LGBTQ community. He has a Masters in Clinical Psychology from Antioch University Los Angeles, with a specialization in LGBT Affirmative Psychotherapy.