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Sexuality: Choice or determined before being born?
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35 / M / Construction land!
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Posted 5/29/11
I'm probably going to get a few weird looks for this, but it's neither, and both, from how I see it.

For genetics, nobody has been able to isolate a "gay gene" or sequence of genes that determines homosexuality. Even using rules of genetic inheritance of dominant/recessive, it can't explain why 2 straight people can give birth to a gay child, or how a lesbian inseminated with a gay guy's sperm can create a straight kid. If it were a case of genes alone, then something to do with heterosexuality is clearly a dominant trait. But what recessive things allow it to come through? And where would the dominant part of the gene come from in my latter pairing prior in this paragraph? So there has to be something other than genetics.

Conversely, it's rather surprising how young some people know about their own preferences. We can see signs of their leaning, usually in retrospect, as they are only indicators, not absolutes, as to their leanings. I was able to say, long before I even knew about myself, that I would never marry a woman. (This dates back to elementary school for me.) Other people who are gay have said they even knew that they were much more... eyeing of people of the same sex then. To make such a serious choice about things that won't come into play for a while would imply that there is some sort of genetic predisposition.

Then we have the choice, or, as some call it, nuturing. The part I mention for genetics being possible is also takable as a way of being raised. It is known that younger kids are much more impressionable, almost like a form of putty that can be molded. Decisions by the parents, be it conscious or not, could lead the kid to a lifestyle far reaching past the simple fact that his most comfortable shirt happens to be red, a color usually associated with girls at a young age. An open style of talking about it, or even knowing other people who are, especially if they are put into role-model positions, could lead more toward emulation of their actions and styles, also forming their norms, or deviations from standard accepted norms. Little things make huge impacts on young kids.

So how, then, can straight parents raise a gay kid, or vice versa? Because it's something innate within. Why would someone make the conscious choice to be ostracized by part of society, only to be different? To be shunned, to possibly be denied legal rights that a "normal" married couple would be able to have? There are quite a few gay people, of both genders, who would like to have kids, to pass on their family name and genes. Being gay makes this exponentially harder. And if the young were truely that malleable, why is it, then, that select religions that bash homosexuality don't scare the kids straight at a young age? Because it's not a choice.

And of course, this brings me to the "correction" programs, or the "ex-gays", if you will. If it were a choice, then why doesn't it work for everyone? Some people just won't be straight, and others try, only to live miserable married lives that end in divorce because they don't feel the attraction for the opposite sex? If it were predetermined, then why are there any documented succcess stories? While few, there are some who are able to go on and marry "normally", have kids, and live the rest of their lives happily. Because it works, it must be a choice. But because it rarely works, it must just be repressed in the success cases, because it's determined before birth.

So it can't be shoehorned into a simple answer. I believe that either both play a role, or neither does.
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Posted 5/29/11
nice copy and paste bro ^
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Posted 5/30/11

Whatdafuckbro wrote:

nice copy and paste bro ^


*glares* If you're referring to my post, try again. As per the name of this subforum, "Extended Discussion", it implies that people will make longer, more thought-out posts to argue a point. Merely copying and pasting does not actually add anything to a discussion, since it means that questions to the post are harder to answer and/or refute; the information would not have come from the poster's mind. As I am someone who has posted long posts at other forums for more serious and deep discussions, a post like this is not out of my normal range. Though at the same time, I can't lie- finding an actual good, serious, and meaningful ED area (a lot of places call them this, also) is tough. It's the sheer number of people who don't actually care about an extension of thought that hurt those forums, be it through refusal to change, immaturity, the thought that their own belief HAS to be right, or something else.

With the lower traffic footprint of this area, I was hoping there would be something serious here. Your post will make me think about that- is it an anomoly, or do people really not care about contributing to the topic, only to bump up their spamming score?
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Posted 5/31/11
I'm not sure at the moment. I think their may be a "genetic defect" which causes someone to be gay, lesbian or bisexual. Although, it may sound offensive to refer to it as a "defect", that's what it is. Being gay, lesbian or bisexual simply isn't natural.

Although, it hasn't been proven to be a "genetic defect", that's what I'm leaning toward. I simply couldn't imagine someone intentionally inviting discrimination toward themselves by choosing to be gay, lesbian or bisexual.
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19 / F / New York
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Posted 6/1/11
I do not belive that sexual orientation is genetic. I also don't think it's a choice. You don't just wake up one day and decide that you're going to be homosexual, it doesn't work like that. It all depends on the way you were brought up, and the experiences you had as a child.

If I were brought up in an extremely religious family, who taught me from a very young age that homosexuality is evil, then I wouldn't have that much of a chance of being homosexual.

However, if I were brought up in a homosexual family or with homosexual influence (seeing them in public, etc.) then I would have a higher chance.

For me, I grew up in a pretty normal family. We don't have any religious values or views, we hardly talked about homosexuality or any of that. But I still became a homosexual based on my personal experiences.
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Posted 6/1/11
I don't know about anyone else, but I chose my sexuality. Whether I'm attracted to men or women (or neither) depends mostly on my mood and aesthetic preferences.
Posted 6/4/11
I, personally, think that people were born with whatever sexuality they have. Why would people who are homosexual CHOOSE to be attracted to the same sex, just to be critisized for it? I mean, some people "choose" to be homosexual for attention, and others try to say that they're attracted to the same sex when they really aren't. I hate it when people say that homosexuals will go to hell. I hate that because sometimes there are homosexual people whom are in denial claiming that people like them will/are going to hell. It doesn't make sense, and some heterosexuals protest the same thing and know that at least once in their lives, they have had feelings for the same sex. So, does that mean that they are going to hell too? They don't think things over before they act. Also, my mother is a lesbian, and she tells my broher and I all the time that she has known that she is a lesbian for a very long time. As for the people who claim to be bisexual, I think they don't know what to do with themselves. I'm not critisizing bisexuals at all, and I'm not sure how I can thouroughly explain where I'm going with this... Bisexuals are everywhere nowadays, and a lot of them are in middle-high school. People should stop labeling others, because it makes things complicated, and start being themselves without worrying about the label they've obtained.

I hope my post makes sense and isn't ignorant, please let me know what you think about my post. :)
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Posted 6/4/11

blasian33 wrote:

I, personally, think that people were born with whatever sexuality they have. Why would people who are homosexual CHOOSE to be attracted to the same sex, just to be critisized for it? I mean, some people "choose" to be homosexual for attention, and others try to say that they're attracted to the same sex when they really aren't. I hate it when people say that homosexuals will go to hell. I hate that because sometimes there are homosexual people whom are in denial claiming that people like them will/are going to hell. It doesn't make sense, and some heterosexuals protest the same thing and know that at least once in their lives, they have had feelings for the same sex. So, does that mean that they are going to hell too? They don't think things over before they act. Also, my mother is a lesbian, and she tells my broher and I all the time that she has known that she is a lesbian for a very long time. As for the people who claim to be bisexual, I think they don't know what to do with themselves. I'm not critisizing bisexuals at all, and I'm not sure how I can thouroughly explain where I'm going with this... Bisexuals are everywhere nowadays, and a lot of them are in middle-high school. People should stop labeling others, because it makes things complicated, and start being themselves without worrying about the label they've obtained.

I hope my post makes sense and isn't ignorant, please let me know what you think about my post. :)


I'll say, at least, that I don't see ignorance in this. You actually do bring up one of the things that does annoy me- people who claim to be gay for the attention. Where it is clear that it is an actual choice as a ploy for the limelight; it fuels the choice community- if they can stop "choosing" to be gay, then why can't everyone?

I do also see your plight on bisexuals, however, this is a legitimate choice- some people are able to be physically attracted to both genders. I know there is a popular scale on sexuality that goes from 1-7, however, I myself have always used a 0-10 scale. (I won't go into more detail unless someone wants me to, as it is a slight deviation.) The quickness to label, especially with the shorter average attention span of younger people, means that I do think that many of the ones who are calling themselves bisexual in middle and high school are more of a bi-curious, which I do see as a good thing; it shows increasing acceptance of non-straight orientations. I'd guess, though it is nothing more than a theory, that, at that time, the sexual hormones are raging as they develop, and thus, more sexual connotation is seen in both genders. In a pent-up desire, they see the good qualities of both sexes, and thus are more free in their thinking in how best to... satiate these new feelings. As these hormones settle back into a new normal level, they will be more rational in their thinking, and see it as a passing phase. The ones who are truly bisexual will know it.

And yes, labels are annoying. I'd rather that we all just be classed as humans, though the desire for some to have power and control will be what stops this. Again, I could go into a tyrade of thoughts on this, but I won't due to the severe deviation from the topic itself. If we can get more of the younger people to accept the differences in people, though, I think it will do good things in weakening the power of those who least deserve it... those who would oppress other humans, merely for being different...
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Posted 6/8/11
I really don't like the notion that it either has be either born that way or a choice, or all the other false dilemmas at play. Another such case is that if we talk about the gay gene, we are talking, well, about the gay gene. Who says that there aren't two genes that work in unison to produce homosexuality? This could also better explain how two straight parents could produce a gay child, assuming only genetics are involved.

More likely than not, genetics are involved, but they are not decisive. This can be seen easily through twin studies (note, twin studies often focus on twins separated from birth and often grow up in different environment), where there's roughly a 67% likelihood identical twins will be gay if one is. And then for fraternal twins, that's roughly 23% chance. Even for cousins, it's roughly a 12% chance, which is much less than the predict 3-7% statistics that people are gay or bisexual. Also, something to clarify, identical twins are characterized by identical genes. They are not, strictly speaking, identical physiologically. Their brains differ by roughly 10% (often due to postnatal growth) and other subtle differences. Not all these differences are postnatal, since they may develop inside the womb. So, just because genetics are decisive, doesn't mean it's automatically postnatal. But, anyways, I digressed. The question we arrived at here is if genetics are involved but are not decisive, then what paired with genetics causes homosexuality, and is it post or prenatal?

Well, hell if I know. I can't exactly say where homosexuality originates. I can say from my own personal experience that it isn't a choice: it just happened. I don't know if perhaps childhood events affected my childhood (unlikely, since my childhood is the epitome of being mundane) or if perhaps the fact I was a second son had something to with it (i.e. referring to the correlation of homosexuality and subsequent sons a mother gives birth to), or something entirely altogether. But, all I can really say with confidence is that I'm gay, and I don't know how it happened, but it wasn't a choice. It just was.

And that's by two cents of stuff that you probably already read about and is only reiterated
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Posted 6/11/11

blasian33 wrote:

I, personally, think that people were born with whatever sexuality they have. Why would people who are homosexual CHOOSE to be attracted to the same sex, just to be critisized for it?


I am bisexual, but I primarily date men because I can relate to them easier, and because I prefer the male body on an aesthetic level (think blonde versus brunette). As for social ostracism, I haven't experienced much of it because of my sexuality. Mostly it comes from my religious and political preferences.
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Posted 6/23/11
Well lets just be realistic. As human being our standard set of instincts only involve our 5 senses. When it comes to sexuality matters, based on current culture sexuality becomes based on nurture that is what any given male or female experiences from the opposite sex as well as their own. and From there they are given the choice of which they like better usually based on past experience/trust factors/ lack of either parent/ etc/
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26 / M / Canada
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Posted 6/23/11
It a choice , human since the beginning of time are born to have relationship with the opposite gender BUT human can choose to love a person of the same sex as them , i am pretty sure in the roman empire some were into that , and even in the Egypt Era, i am sure pharaoh had maybe a crush on people with same sex as them , but it a choice . ^_^
Posted 6/23/11 , edited 6/23/11
I read that a mother's hormone levels, while she is carrying a child in her womb, may alter the child's sexual orientation. Which is why when one twin is gay, it's very common that the other is as well.
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Posted 6/28/11

oKAZUo wrote:

It a choice , human since the beginning of time are born to have relationship with the opposite gender BUT human can choose to love a person of the same sex as them , i am pretty sure in the roman empire some were into that , and even in the Egypt Era, i am sure pharaoh had maybe a crush on people with same sex as them , but it a choice . ^_^


Yes and no. I'm into Roman Civilization (mainly Latin, but given that I have read a lot of authentic texts, I read a lot about Roman Civilization too). The thing is that Romans had a completely different perception of sexuality than we do. And, honestly, I don't think most Americans realize how close-minded their views of sexuality are.

So, let's start with the American point of view. Americans care only about one thing when it comes to sexuality: who do you have intercourse with? is it a hot babe? Or is it your boyfriend? Once you're married, is it just your wife like it's supposed to be? Is it someone of the same-sex or opposite-sex? And so on. No matter what though, Americans (and really most of the Western world) defers to the concept of who do you have interourse with.

The Romans, on the other hand, were interested in how you have intercourse. It's important to note that Roman sexuality had a male-centric view. If you were a woman, you had sex with your husband to produce babies. But, if you were a male citizen of Rome, you had to be on top. IT didn't matter if it was your son, some dame, a slave, or hell, even a goat. You just had to be on top. Which is where Roman homosexuality becomes tricky. Romans didn't view homosexuality in the way we do. Romans didn't have an issue with homosexuality per se, but any romantic homosexual relationship would have a conflict with other interests. As mentioned before, you had to be on top. That means that whomever you're doing with it has to be on bottom (for the record, there is actually a law that says that a male citizen of Rome cannot be on bottom). Which also means that your sexual partner cannot be another Roman male citizen circumstantially. Nevertheless, someone who was interested in casual homosexual sex was not impacted, so long as his partner was a slave. Even so, having intercourse with a slave is considered undignified. Likewise, slaves, who weren't Roman citizens at all, weren't subject to the same Roman laws, and thus they could have homosexual relationships both romantically and sexually. Lastly, although the laws would dictate that this is such, most records indicate the senate really only cared about abuse, and thus prosecution of homosexual individuals under this law were rare. Therefore, we're not sure if they're regulated.

Lastly, the reason why it was taboo for men to take on a passive role is simply because it was too feminine, and since Romans were incredibly sexist, this was a huge, and more likely than not, the fundamental issue. However, women did obtain some equality both legally and socially. An example of social equality is seen perhaps most vividly through the Pandora myth, to the point there's two versions. The first version is simply Zeus created Pandora, a witch who consciously released all evils into the world along with hope. The second version is the one where Pandora opened an urn, called Pandora's Box, out of curiosity and subsequently released all evils into the world. Both versions of the myth are fundamentally sexist, but the latter one demonized women significantly less (to the point that most people recognize that it is a sexist myth unless they understand Pandora's purpose). I forget what happened legally, but I do believe Catalina really started a feminism movement, and there was a march that eventually ended with some important figurehead removing a law. I'm not sure if this helped make homosexuality any more accepted, but it may have.

Anyways, the point being is this. Romans really didn't care who you had sexual relations with. You just had to make sure you attended your baby making duties and, if you were a Roman citizen, to take on an active role since it's degrading to take on a passive role. A passive role was degrading because there femininity was attributed to it, and such, feminism and sexuality may very well be intertwined in Rome.

...Anyways, that's a longass explanation.
Posted 7/3/11
It's not a choice or determined....

I don't kno about anyone else but....

To me i don't even see gender......

I see a person with a heart....

Simple.

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