The Republic of T.

Black. Gay. Father. Vegetarian. Buddhist. Liberal.

When Did You Know You Were Heterosexual?

I mentioned earlier that PFOX was distributing literature to students in our school district. Well, Timothy at Ex-Gay Watch has the skinny on the handout, which amounts to a list of websites proselytizing for a particular brand of Christianity.

The flier, though, is simply part of a larger effort to derail a gay-inclusive sex education curriculum in Montgomery County, Maryland, where we now live, and where our kids will go to school. A curriculum introduced a year ago raised objections from a small group of right-wingers (none of whom appear to have kids in Montgomery County schools, as far as I can tell), and the current one is still raising objections; particularly the part entitled “Respect for Differences in Human Sexuality,” which discourages stereotyping and encourages empathy (asking students to consider the challenges LGBT students face, and put themselves in the other person’s position for a minute) and treating others with dignity and respect despite differences.

But I’m not going to address the entire story. Autumn at Ex-Gay Watch and Jim at the Vigilance blog do that far better than I can. I will, however, point out one thing that everyone should consider. This is a test case. Montgomery County is a very progressive area, and that’s why thus far we’ve been successful in fighting off this attempt by religious extremists to take control of our schools’ curriculum. They knew that when they first launched their campaign. They also know that if they can succeed here, they’ll have a much easier time in other school districts. Maybe yours.

What I want to address is one bit of insanity presented by NARTH, in support of the wingnuts. It’s also the basis for the question that’s the title of this post, and one I want to post to heterosexual readers of this blog.

Autumn quotes a letter from NARTH’s new president that contains this little gem.

Schools should be safe places where respect for all people must be taught. Many students are victims of taunting and cruelty(this is not limited by any means to sexual orientation). Such acts should not be tolerated and problems should be compassionately addressed. (Ed. Note: This is a departure from a previous NARTH recommendation that some ridicule should be allowed.) However, premature foreclosure on sexual identity may encourage risky behaviors and place adolescents, many of whom already struggle with impulsiveness and self-restraint issues, at further risk for both physical and mental health problems such as sexually-transmitted diseases.

Rather than affirming teenagers as gay or bisexual through self-labeling, educators should affirm them as people worthy of respect and encourage them to wait until adulthood to make choices about their sexuality. Dr. George Rekers, Professor of Neuropsychiatry at the University Of South Carolina, summarized this point nicely: “No service is done to our children by offering them lifestyle options before they are properly able to make informed choices about them.”

To which I say this: Cancel homecoming. Cancel the prom.

Why? Well, in the interest of fairness, if teenagers can’t know if they’re gay or bisexual before reaching adulthood, it stands to reason that they can’t know for sure if they’re heterosexual either. And since many teenagers struggle with impulsiveness and self-restraint issues, and since foreclosure on any sexual identity can lead to sexual activity that puts their mental and physical health at risk, we shouldn’t encourage them to identify as gay, bisexual or heterosexual, but encourage them to wait until adulthood to determine if they’re gay, straight or bi.

Right? Of course, that might leave some proto-hetero students to consider the possibility that they might be something else.

But not to worry. If you’re heterosexual, then you don’t need to worry about what you might be, because you’ve always been heterosexual.

Not so for homosexuals, though. ‘Cause homosexuals are really just maladjusted heterosexuals who’ve always been heterosexual and just don’t know it yet. Or at least that’s the assumption in the epistle from NARTH’s president. Teenagers who identify as gay or bisexual should be encouraged to wait until adulthood to “make choices about their sexuality.” Never mind that sexuality and sexual orientation are somewhat different, though related, things.)

Teenagers who identify as heterosexuals, though, may date, engage in practice courting, and buy corsages and rent tuxedoes for a ritual that bares some resemblance to a wedding rehearsal. They can “make choices about their sexuality,” and start practicing their “appropriate roles,” but one can assume that the right-wingers would prefer that the proto-hetero teens stop short of making choices about sexual activity, but everything else is alright since they’re well on their way down hetero lane.

The assumption is that heterosexuals know they’re heterosexuals, and have never been anything else, while homosexuals have not always been homosexual and just don’t know that they’re really heterosexual. (And if they experience too much acceptance and empathy too early, and are treated with too much dignity and respect, they might never have incentive to become heterosexual rediscover their heterosexuality.) In other words, if you’re gay it’s just because you don’t know you’re really heterosexual. (That doesn’t quite jibe with the reality that many “ex-gay” organizations are abandoning the idea of changing sexual orientation.)

But I think it’s worth applying the NARTH rule across the board. I mean, if was mistaken when I came out at the age of 12, thus putting a name to what I’d always felt, and if I made “choices about my sexuality” too soon, then maybe the other guys in the locker room did too. If it was impossible for me to know that I was gay at that age, then it must have been impossible for them to know they weren’t gay (or bi, or transgendered). Weren’t we all too young to know?

So, I’m asking my heterosexual readers to help me out here. Because I truly don’t understand. I mean, I know I’ve always been same-sex oriented. There was never a time when I didn’t know. But I really don’t know the process by which anyone knows that they’re heterosexual.

So, when did you know you were heterosexual? How did you know?

And do you think maybe you made up your mind too soon?

24 Comments

  1. nothing to say but…

    excellent post and point. It’s amazing that they don’t just get it.

    Thanks

  2. The quintessential hypocrisy turned on its head. Very nicely done.

  3. I, er, just never liked boys. Not in that way. And along about nine or ten, girls started being interesting in new and unsettling ways, and that was pretty much that. I’ve always assumed that it worked the same way for the vast majority of people, regardless of the final orientation.

  4. Terrence my love, that’s why I as a straight person, and every other straight person can’t argue with the gay person about their feelings and when they knew them.
    It’s wrong (and arrogant) to deny that a gay person knows EXACTLY what they are talking about.
    And a straight person has to ACCEPT that.
    And accept that they know nothing about being gay or what gay people are SUPPOSED to be.

    It’s not rocket science. It’s not a hard thing to accept.
    We accept a lot of things that if we give it time, and experience…and accept those with FIRSHAND experience, we’d all get along better.
    Indeed, once the medical, psychiatric and social worker groups told the general public that being gay is normal, gay folks function as well as straight folks and no one has to worry that the gay person is a threat…
    You’d think this would be GOOD news to those who weren’t sure.
    You’d think that other business would engage the anti gay.
    I dunno, like the war on terrorism, Alzheimer’s and autism (which are on the rise) and individual 401 K’s.
    Anyone who is breathing and has a child or will grow old, can be concerned about these things universally.
    But single characteristic discrimination against marriage and parenthood is already known to be unworkable and stupid….along with all the other single characteristic bigotry that existed before.

    I tell the homophobes, the simple difference between them and me, is I BELIEVE what the GAY FOLKS say, and have no reason not to.
    And I’m not afraid of gay folks, and have no reason to be.
    Straight people aren’t the experts on gay lives. Never were…
    And just WHO died and told them they were anyway?

  5. I was 5 years old when in 1985 my parents bought their first VCR. We hadn’t owned it for very long before my parents rented Allen Funt’s What Do You Say to a Naked Lady. Being free-love hippies, they let me watch it with them. I realized right then that naked ladies were nice to have around.

  6. Alot raced through my heterosexual brain in the hours following our 13 yr old son’s statement to us that he was gay, didn’t want to be gay, just was. My husband was fabulous, jumped right in and apologized for not talking about safe sex due to waiting to hear him talk about girls, asked for me to give them some private time and he did the best he could to educate our son about same gender safe sex.

    One of the thoughts I had during the time my husband and son were discussing safe sex that memorable afternoon was at what age did I start to notice boys as just more than a “friend.” Also, did I ever notice girls in that way and was any of those feelings conciously made? Hell no, I had no more control over my attraction toward the opposite gender than the lack of attraction toward the same gender.

    During the trial for one of the ones who beat our son in an anti gay assault, I lost it with the judge and in response to his remark about our son “making a poor choice” shouted, at what age were you when you chose to be hetero and a bigot.

    Thank you for your excellent response to this ongoing push to make seperate rules for all based on their sexual orientation and or gender identity. I agree with your analysis, ban any possible event wherein underage youth would even remotely be encouraged, much less pressured to make any sort of decision as to sexuality.

    Bravo for job well done!

  7. I was six years old, when I met Karen Penhaligon. My best friend was already a girl, Hildy Gallagher, but Karen was the first girl to make my heart go pitter-patter. She was a blond pixie of a girl, with a cherubic smile. Our moms took us on a date to the Mountain Theater on Mount Tamalpais. I left the private school we had met at after second grade, and never saw her again until I went to take my SAT test. I heard her name called, looked up, and saw this tall, willowy model acknowledge her name. My heart was still in my throat. But it had been so long, and I felt so insecure, that I never went up to say hello.
    I have always loved girls and women, and have always been indifferent to boys and men.
    On the other hand, my brother is not straight. He struggled against it for his entire youth, and well into adulthood. It was only after years of recovery from alcohol abuse, and intensive therapy, that he was finally willing to admit to us something that I had known for years, that he was gay. I still mourn the wasted years without true intimacy that his fear deprived him of. I know that it was this society’s bigotry which made him afraid. And I wish he had had some of the stubborness that I had as a youngest child, never to be told how to think or feel about myself. If I had been gay, I would have been out at six, just like I was out as straight at that age. But at least he has intimacy now, and is a much happier person than he was. Thank God.

  8. The reason that adolescents should be discouraged from claiming a homosexual identity (gay) at such a young and turbulent age is because the homosexual lifestyle presents some unique dangers that children of that age are unprepared to handle. Many children struggle with their homosexual attractions for years into adulthood, sometimes resulting in suicide, and need to be presented with truthful information about the dangers that lurk in the homosexual world. I have never heard of a child struggling with unwanted heterosexual attractions, or else I would advocate the lunacy that you suggested in this article.

  9. I’m one of the few that is 100% gay, never having been with a woman nor never having the desire to try it. I’ve always known I was gay, even before I knew what the word meant.

    When my straight friend asked how do you know you don’t like girls if you’ve never tried it? I posed the same question back to him. How do you know you don’t like boys if you’ve never tried it?

    He replied “I just know” then looked at me with a smile and said, I guess you “just know” too.

    If only other straight people could see it that clearly. We just know.

  10. Nicky, I don’t know what planet you are from, but there are plenty of problems with heterosexual attractions. You know, endemic sexual harassment, which most attractive girls in junior high and high school have to deal with, leading to drug and alcohol abuse and suicide. Clique cruelty, with superficially unattractive girls and boys stigmatized by roving gangs of superficially attractive girls and boys, leading to drug and alcohol use and suicide…
    I could go on for days.
    Sexual attraction of any kind is a ticking time bomb for most young people. It is bigotry like yours which makes it more difficult for those naturally attracted to the same gender, not some inherent “problem” with the natural choice. Grow up.

  11. I don’t think NARTHs support for bullying is just about sexual attraction.

    Anyone remember Adrienne Rich’s essay “Compulsory Heterosexuality and Lesbian Existence”? She posits that heterosexuality is a political institution enforced by violence, not a behavioral choice or a set of individual sexual attractions. No matter if/when one notices whether boys, girls or both make you tingle, heterosexual behavior is still required and enforced by criminal and family law, social custom, religious affiliation and the medical establishment. You can’t have sex roles, legitimately owned children, patrilineal property inheritance, or whole bunch of other social institutions, without actively enforcing heterosexuality.

    I believe that if kids are allowed to question heterosexuality without any threat, it really does threaten many fundamental social institutions. I believe this just as I believe that state-recognized marriage for same-sex couples really does undermine traditional marriage. And I think this disruption is a wonderful thing. You would have to cancel a whole lot more than the prom!

    Every time we differentiate our multi-dimensional range of sexual and emotional attractions from a rigid institution for holding power, we participate a little less in hetero/sexism. Every wedding between a groom and groom or a bride and bride remakes the institution of marriage into a commitment in which free people of any gender and sexual orientation intentionally engage, not a Compulsory Dream for Girls, or a means of reproducing owning class privilege.

    So when we have to wrestle with folks like NARTH, let’s remember what’s at stake. It’s more than just our feelings, and they know it even if we don’t. I have a hunch the folks at NARTH associated because they know exactly what they are fighting to protect. And it’s way bigger than their (ugly) stated mission of enforcing sex roles and heterosexuality.

  12. Hey Nicky,

    Take a look at this.

    http://www.m-w.com/dictionary/satire

    Specifically:

    1 : a literary work holding up human vices and follies to ridicule or scorn
    2 : trenchant wit, irony, or sarcasm used to expose and discredit vice or folly

    You didn’t really think T. is saying that the prom is immoral? (I mean, apart from the drinking and pre-marital sex. But then, the heterosexual lifestyle has no dangers, does it?)

  13. To Nicky,
    It is your sort of mentality that lead to the years of harassment, discrimination and violence that was wrought upon our son! When I cradled my young son’s bloody and broken body I swore that to my last breath I would fight the mentality such as yours that leads to this senseless violence. You and people like you have declared WAR upon our lgbt loved ones and friends and we are not going silently into the good night anymore.

    The reason the lives of lgbt children is full of danger is based upon the ignorance and fear of heterosexuals and the severely impaired closeted gays. Then you have the fools who use their religious beliefs to practice that old fashioned pick and choose religion. We are not taking this anymore!

    Grew up in the south and heard the bible used to justify segregation and marriage to your own “kind.” My father was klan and the kicker was that he was mixed yet passed. He was no different than people like Haggard, full of self hate and out to hurt those who remind him of his real self.

    In the past decade alot of education with FACTS has transpired and the numbers are rapidly growing of heterosexuals who know they have lgbt loved ones. The older hetero parents/families such as myself are also educating about the war we are engaged in due to our own form of home grown terrorists.

    There is no middle ground on this issue and whenever any group, school district, etc. feels the need to impose seperate rules for our lgbt children we will be there to ensure all rules will be applied equally. In another 50 years our nation will be full of a list of cowards who opposed lgbt equality and will try to get their names off that list and out of the history that will record their bigotry as such is now recorded for those who opposed racial equality.

  14. Tell it, Carolyn!
    You bear witness, NOT Nicky.
    This what I mean Nicky, people like you are in NO PLACE to give lectures and act like YOU know gay people better than the mother of one.
    Or the sister, or the brother.
    Carolyn’s love for her son, and my respect for HER and her son’s life, will leave YOU Nicky, in the dust where you belong!

    You’re ignorant. And all the crap you heard wasn’t FROM anyone gay or who loved them.
    But from other staight people invested in hating gay people and ensuring that you did too.
    You drank the anti gay Kool-Aid.
    The people you should be listening to, Nicky is CAROLYN.
    SHE speaks the undeniable truth.

    And what world would YOU rather live in Nicky?
    The world that accepts gay kids, leaves them to discover their best selves and gift the world with their abilities?
    Or a world where threat is around every corner, and any form of discovery causes fragile integration based solely on deception.
    Deception for the consumption of arrogant straight people who can’t bear to believe THEY aren’t the most important and wondrous people ever born.

    Carolyn I admire you always, and best of luck to you and your entire family.
    I could never argue with a mom like you.
    Nicky, I DARE you to try and say something now to Carolyn….against what she’s testified.
    Bet you can’t….

  15. Sorry to disappoint you, REGAN, but I bet the hell I can. I am a 27-year old woman who has spent life as long as I can remember, dealing with homosexual attractions and feelings,and the only difference between myself and others who try and lay claim to that “victim” role is that I have been there and am STILL there. I am sorry to hear about what happened to Carolyn’s son, Lord knows that he didn’t deserve it, but not one of you on this page can attest for me what I have been through. I, unlike others who have suffered with the same problems, did not subscribe to the fact that my attractions were innate and that was not in any way due to Kool-Aid or any other “misinformation” spewed to me by any anti-gays. So as far as your claim that I should listen to Carolyn, only MY truth is undeniable to me and I assume that according to your standards, that does leave me in the place to “lecture”. In fact, that leaves me in the BEST place. Now who did you say wouldn’t know a gay person better than the mother of one?
    Children who are questioning their sexuality need to be told the truth about the consequences of their choice to lay claim to any sexual orientation. Straight, gay, bi, shit, even people that have a proclivity towards people who have hair growing out of their ears need to be taught in truth. I regret that my mother, who was a lesbian until she died in 1988 and lived openly with her lover in the home that I was raised in, didn’t tell me of the increased risk of sexually transmitted diseases and not to mention guilt of living that life. I know that your ignorance will make it hard to believe, but some of us that have homosexual feelings WANT to be told that this is not our only option.
    I do not believe that homosexuality is a choice, just as heterosexuality is not, either. It is a combination of factors, at least in my own life. And if that could be true with me, then who is to say that other gays can not be derived from the same issues? Or promiscuous heterosexuals? Or sadists? Or masochists? I guess you all think that some of us are whores by nature, also.
    It is ignorant people like you that tell these young children, one of which I used to be, that they have no choice or no help or no alternatives in this matter, to repress their desires for truth and change and subsequently condemn them to a life that they do not want. If people were more educated on the proven causes of homosexuality and other aberrant sexual behavior, then conversations like this would be more meaningful. Your sympathy is misplaced, unfortunately. For every gay child or person that claims that identity, there is another one who needs help that is in alignment with their inherent values. So Regan, in response to your insulting suggestion: I did GROW UP. I grew up like that!

  16. Correction, Loren’s insulting suggestion. Oh, and as an afterthought on the mattter, Carolyn, the lives of these lgbt children are also in danger when school counselors and the media and parents and friends and songs are feeding them the fantasy that prematurely and uninformingly claiming the gay lifestyle will bring them relief, glory, and cake and balloons. They neglect to inform them of the dangers of this, the increased rate at which they can contract deadly STD’s, the depression that they may suffer from, even in countries like Denmark, which was the first to legalize gay “marriage” and homosexual behavior carries little to no stigma. What about those gay and questioning children there, where they are still committing suicide in droves,obviously not due to society’s predudices, but more likely due to the unsatiated emotional component of homosexuality? If everyone is so concerned about the best interest of lgbt children and adults, then why are ex-gay groups and their testimonies so often discounted by gay advocacy groups whose supposed mantra is “tolerance”? I was once told that it is because those people were never genuinely gay, I was even told that I wasn’t. But if being in gay relationships and battling homosexual feelings and feelings of feminine inadequacy for my entire life doesn’t qualify me as gay, then what exactly does? I can’t believe that so many people could come at me so hatefully when all I am is concerned about people like myself that struggle with these issues and are never told the truth, either through pure malice, an agenda, or pure ignorance, like the people who attacked me here.
    When little girls grow up without there fathers, there is no doubt that she has an increased chance of all types of sexually promiscuous behavior due to a lifetime of trying to replace her father with men, sexually, which is as intimate as you can get. Nothing feeds that fatherneed like sex, that is as close to a man as she will ever get while trying to capture her father’s presence in her life. Now which one of you supposed intellects will be willing to tell me that with all of these young boys growing up without fathers, whether physically or emotionally, that the exact same problem cannot manifest itself in them? And of course, I only use this example as indicative of one of the main sources of homosexual urgings in men. But I know, because I have been there am there now and dare any of you to minimize what I live everyday.

  17. Now Regan, still “BELIEVE WHAT THE GAY FOLKS SAY”?

  18. Nicky, my brother was “there” until he was in his 40s. And it damaged him immeasurably. Fortunately, he was able to finally break through and accept his natural attractions, and now has a level of intimacy which was denied to him for years. I draw no parallels with you, since it is not my place to judge your decision, just as it was not my place to tell my brother what to do. But I watched the man I love more than any other man suffer in that struggle for decades. And this was in the SF Bay Area, which, for the US, is relatively supportive of homosexuality.

    Children always need guidance from their parents, and I strive to be the kind of parent whose child will trust them enough to discuss sexuality with them. And we live in a culture which stigmatized sex in general, but punishes “deviations” from the “norm”.
    I don’t believe that God gave us sex to punish us. And I will not play God for my child, by acting as if I should be the final arbiter of their sexual choices.

    I am saddened that you feel so burdened, and I will pray for you. But you state as factual a number of opinions which are more properly described as subjective conclusions. When you talk of the “unsatiated emotional component of homosexuality”, you use an inflammatory rhetoric which describes the opposite experience to my brother. As long as he struggled to deny his sexuality, his ability to be truly intimate was severely truncated.

    And your assumption that homosexuality is unnatural is based on your own biases, not reality. It may be that your “battle” against your homosexuality is a choice you have made, and I hope that it has made your life happier. Truly. Just don’t assume it gives you the right to judge how anyone else should act, or how any parent should raise their children.

  19. I don’t presume to judge how others should act. All that I know is that parents are here to protect children, not to thrust them into harm’s way. The homosexual lifestyle is one that is uniquely dangerous to children and adults and I feel that it is the responsibility of adults to inform children of that, whether the feelings are innate or not. The facts are there. When parents are told that their child has an illness or another condition that can make their life more difficult, such as Down’s syndrome or sickle cell anemia, are they not properly informed by doctors of the downside of such conditions? I feel that the same should go for homosexuality, whether it is inborn or not. Just because you are born or believe that you are born a certain way, it does not mean that the way is necessarily good for you. Nobody hides the negativities of other harmful conditions that people are born with, so why should homsosexuality be any different? If a parent can accept their child as such, then be honest enough to inform them. Just as if your child is hetero, inform them of the dangers of heterosexual sex. Thank you for your prayers.

  20. Why is it uniquely dangerous? Because you say so? No. I would argue that it is uniquely dangerous, in much of the world, to be a woman. Your life is bound to be harder and less fulfilling than a man’s life. You may be restricted in how you act or dress. You may be stigmatized from holding political office, or from holding any position of leadership in business. Why? Because of bigotry. And, surprise surprise, in some places, like China, which penalizes you for having too many children, it is not uncommon for expectant parents to get an ultrasound, and abort a fetus if it turns out to have been female.

    There is nothing uniquely dangerous about homosexual sex. Heterosexual sex is the prime cause of transmission of AIDS in Africa. Any kind of unprotected sex is potentially dangerous. I will make sure my kids know the facts.

    And my child is autistic. I have spent years fending off the unwanted sympathy of kindly narrow-minded people. God put him in my life for His reasons. I certainly have learned how to be less judgemental and to practice unconditional love, to an extent I might not have attained if I had not been looking for God’s message. Perhaps God has put what you consider your challenge in your life for a positive reason, which you may discover by searching for it. Again, not trying to fit you into a cubbyhole of my making; just a thought. Peace.

  21. Heterosexual sex is the primary cause of transmission in AIDS because the population there is largely ignorant of ways that actually transmit the disease. And in an attempt to educate the young and upcoming about the importance of abstinence in the complete prevention of that deadly disease, some groups have tried to implement and spread the promotion of the ABC program. But liberal organizations are trying to prevent that information from getting out to help these poor people. However, that is the case in Africa. Here in the United States, the main cause of transmission of HIV and AIDS is men who have sex with other men, many of whom deny their homo or bisexuality and spread the disease to their wives and girlfriends. So our children here in the US need to be taught about the spread of the virus as it pertains to us here. When something is accepted and affirmed as opposed to stigmatized, the shame is released and so is the Pandora’s box.Homosexual sex is not widely accepted in Africa, not even in South Africa, where they are considering legalizing same sex “marriage”, so it is no small wonder why heterosex, which has always been normalized by society, is the main cause of the transmission and spreading of the virus. Here in the United States, for the past 30 years or so, societal acceptance of homosexuality is increasing, and it is thus no wonder why the main spreaders of the disease are exactly the demographic that I described above.
    That being said, somebody has told you wrong if you do not think that there are unique dangers associated with homosexual sex, especially between that of gay men. At the hospital I worked in after college for almost five years, they would come in the ER and as inpatients suffering from complications that I have never in all of my experience nor that of my far more learned and experienced colleagues, seen in heterosexuals. Sure, there’s the run of the mill herpes-hep-gonnorhea-chlamydia-HPV-and of course HIV and AIDS. But among our gay men, there were so many of them that were inflicted with painful and sorrowful conditions that I had never even heard of before, like anal cancer, cryptosporidium, giardia lamblia, anal fissures, anorectal trauma, isospora belli, and microsporidia. If my word alone is not evidence enough of the uniqueness of this lifestyle, there’s more. Much more…

    In a study conducted in 1978 by Alan P. Bell and Martin S.Weinberg(Homosexualities:A Study of Diversity Among Men and Women p.308 Table 7,Simon and Schuster), 28% of the respondents to a survey said that they had had more than 1000 lifetime partners at that point and 75% reported 100 . The smallest figure reported between 100 and 249 lifetime partners at 15%.

    In a 2000 survery conducted by the University of New South Wales in Australia, homosexual men who considered themselves “out” were four times more likely to have had 50 partners in the six months preceding the survey than homosexual men who considered themselves to be “closeted”. This poses the implication that there is more pressure to be promiscuous when one identifies as “gay”, then when they do not, hence recognizing the need to put off self-identity of a gay label by teenagers and children whose sexuality may be fluid for years.

    A statistic study done from 1986-1990, by Hoover, estimated that a 20 year old gay man had a 50% chance of contracting the HIV virus by the time he turned 55, thus shortening the life span of about half of all young homosexual men.

    The Basic Statistics provided by the CDC’s Division of HIV/AIDS Prevention in June of 2001, showed that approximately 64% of men with AIDS were men that engaged primarily in sex with other men. And lastly, a Baltimore study reported in the Archives of Internal Medicine stated that gay men contracted syphillis at a rate three to four times that of heterosexual men.

    Now, I know that there is someone out there that doesn’t want to give credence to my information, and that is not okay. Our continuance to ignore the facts only perpetuate these deadly problems. True, as Loren mentioned, it is dangerous to be a woman in this world. That is why we have self defense classes and mothers and fathers to teach and protect their daughters about and from the dangers that are unique to them. That only makes my point more clear and deepens my resolve to help my brothers and sisters that ARE actually struggling with their feelings. I believe in educating children in the dangers of anything that they may be exposed to, whether it be inborn or not. It is only right.

  22. Nicky, you sound an awful lot like the pre-Stonewall psychologists who studied homosexuals in psyche wards and decided that all homosexuals were neurotic because they only studied neurotic homosexuals. And they never addressed whether that neurosis was inherent to being homosexual or in some part a product of the violence and discrimination visited upon one for being homosexual. (Because if you’re not crazy, that can make you crazy.)

    Your information is much the same as theres. First, you assume that all gay men are pretty much like the ones you see in the emergency room. That reminds me of a story that a friend of mine who worked as an EMT once told me.

    He and his partner, a woman, got a call that someone needed an ambulance. They had trouble locating the person, but finally found him. It was a guy sitting in a car next to a pay phone. They got out of the ambulance and started walking towards the car. But the guy saw the female EMT and started screaming she couldn’t come over. So my friend went to the car, stuck his head in the window, and couldn’t stop laughing when he stood back up.

    The guy had picked up a prostitute, and she had managed to convince him that she could really “blow his mind” if he put his member through the hole in the seatbelt latch. Well, he did, and I don’t know if she ever fulfilled her end of the bargain, but she made off with his wallet and left him stuck. He couldn’t get it back out, because the blood couldn’t flow back out. He drove around until he found a pay phone he could reach from the car.

    They cut the seatbelt and got him back to the hospital, and eventually had to cut the buckle off of him, after trying to pull it off and “drain” him. Before he left, the asked the guy if they should call his wife to pick him up. He declined, but I’m guessing he had some explaining to to eventually anyway.

    Should I assume what’s true of this guy is true of all heterosexual men?

    As for the rest, no one is trying to keep anyone from learning or teaching abstinence. It’s abstinence-only education that’s the problem, because it doesn’t work. People, being human and sex being a human need, continue to have sex. Most of us aren’t cut out for celibacy. Combine that with the anti-condom propaganda and you get rising HIV/AIDS rates in countries like Uganda, where the rates were once dropping.

    Is abstinence the only 100% certain way to avoid STDs? Yes, but lifelong abstinence isn’t an option for most people. So why not teach them how to reduce their risk? Or do they deserve to die for having sex? Or having the kind sex you disapprove of?

    What you and people like you ignore and never ask is what would happen if young people saw families like mine? Two men in a committed, monogamous relationship, and raising a family? What if committed same-sex relationships were encouraged and even supported? What if that were an option for more gay people? Would the disease rates you mention change? If more people had the option of a healthy expression their sexuality without being stigmatized? One that encouraged commitment and responsibility?

    The statistics you mention are not an inherent part of being gay. They can be the unfortunate result of sexual activity that both homosexual and heterosexual persons engage in. And I’ve talked to enough people to know that heterosexuals do all of the same things that homosexuals do: anal sex, oral sex, etc. All of the things you mention can and do happen to them to.

    The difference is that heterosexuals are offered a healthy, socially supported context in which to express their sexuality. Same-sex couples are not, and are in fact penalized for forging committed relationships by various means of discrimination and even violence. To that end, they’re discouraged from that route. So what’s left?

    Fortunately, the reality is that more and more of us are building committed relationships, and raising families. And the trend is moving towards majority support for that.

    And when that happens? You’ll probably see a lot more healthy, happy homosexuals than you do even now. (Or than you would, if you looked).

    Won’t that be awful?

  23. In response to your first query concerning the (very funny)story, all heterosexual men don’t have to put their “man” inside of a seat belt hole. But all gay men DO have to put their “man” in, well, a man. So it is to be more expected that that will happen and therefore the risk associated, then that a hetero dummy will do what that cheating nut did.

    I also feel that committed relationships should be encouraged and supported, regardless of whether they are societally traditional or not. However, that type of encouragement and support for the gay community needs to come from them first. While there are admittedly a vast number of committed homosexual couples, one cannot deny the glorification of promiscuity in that demographic of people. That type of “encouragement” is harmful. It can be paralleled to Blacks and their glorification of murder, drugs, and casual sex through hip-hop music. There have been many great leaders in the gay community that have not only acknowledged the presence of promiscuity among gay males, but have also hailed its inevitability and acceptance as a part of gay life. People like Michaelangelo Signorile and Camille Paglia. So if that encouragement is desired, it should start at home first, just as with heterosexuals and their endorsement of promiscuity.

    Lastly, yes, heteros do do the same things that homosexuals do, ie. the oral and anal and that whole spiel. However, the only difference is that heterosexuals’ bodies present them with the unique opportunity to “switch it up” from time to time, therefore lessening their exposure to the ailments that we discussed before. Gay men and women are limited in their ability to change sexual techniques san the usage of outside paraphernalia. Basically, they have no choice. If you have two people that suffer from a peanut allergy, and one eats a steady diet of carrot cake and the other eats only peanuts, which one is more likely to have the allergic reaction? Correct me if I’m wrong.

    Although I disagree with the majority of people that submit to this site on a number of issues, I would like to say something genuine. I am a Christian, and I know that that is a code word for OH HELL NO for some people. But that is not the case with me. I never intend to try and spread hate, I only share my beliefs based on what I believe to know, whether through experience or observation. I assume that to be the case with everyone here. I don’t want be the type of Christian that uses their religion as a basis to spit hurtful vitriol at others, or to condemn any group of people as more sinful than any other. We are all sinners, self included and especially. I have had premarital sex, I have harbored homosexual feelings at times, and I currently live with my boyfriend, so I am a fornicator at present. The way that I live my life is just as sinful in God’s eyes as the homosexuals that I seemingly disparage in my comments. I DO NOT HATE HOMOSEXUALS. I am just coming from a different direction and with a different approach based on my experiences and observations, which many people may find disagreeable, even hateful and demeaning. I feel that homosexuals are not born that way and that a combination of factors contribute to that orientation, just as it did with my orientation to be attracted to tall, dark-skinned men with thick eyebrows at this point in my life. I feel that homosexuality is more preventable than it is curable, as also is the case with the promiscuity that I indulged in as a younger girl. I know that no matter what I say or how I put it, many of you will read these words with a bad taste in your mouth. I am sorry for those that I offend, but I only know how I feel. I’m also sorry that my opinions were met with such venom earlier. I have none in return. I will pray for you, Terrance,and your partner and your family and appreciate any prayers for me, as well. When it comes down to it, we are all flawed human beings.

    May I just ask that everyone take some time to think about and remember: the children who were intentionally deprived of a mother AND father, and thus the absence of an important life role model; the children and teenagers and even adults, who question the validity of innate homosexuality and honestly want and deserve help in seeking completion, if that is what they desire; the homosexual couple that remains faithful and have only the best intentions; the people living in relationships outside of the bounds of marriage and being eaten up by guilt everyday;and anyone else that you never thought you would find common ground with.

    I disagreed heartily with many of you on this site and I still wish the best for you all. It wasn’t easy holding this end up all alone.

  24. Nicky, I have several problems with a lot of what you wrote in terms of accuracy.

    For example:

    You cited Bell and Weinberg study. But you omitted the fact that the study in question looked a group of gay men in San Francisco in the early 1970s. Bell and Weinberg even said:

    “. . . given the variety of circumstances which discourage homosexuals
    from participating in research studies, it is unlikely that any
    investigator will ever be in a position to say that this or that is true of
    a given percentage of all homosexuals.”

    So in that case, we are talking about an out-of-date convenience sample study that should not be generalized to mean the entire gay community.

    And that Baltimore study you mentioned – come on now. You gleaned that statistics from a discredited study by John R. Diggs.

    Diggs’s citation looked at 341 patients suffering from syphillis seen at a health clinic in Baltimore, one city in the entire country. It is yet another convenience sample study.

    You mentioned that gays suffer depression “even in countries like Denmark, which was the first to legalize gay “marriage” and homosexual behavior carries little to no stigma.” You neglected the fact that the author of the study, Theo G. Sandfort, said that more work needs to be done but no one should take his findings and try to apply them to other places. You see, he only looked at one city in Denmark. Yet another convenience sample.

    And I really want to know more details about the “Hoover” study. Because the CDC has gone on record saying that you cannot determine the “life span” of gay men via HIV/AIDS rates.

    Also, Nicky (and I am trying to be as delicate as I can about this), I have a problem with this statement you made –

    “At the hospital I worked in after college for almost five years, they would come in the ER and as inpatients suffering from complications that I have never in all of my experience nor that of my far more learned and experienced colleagues, seen in heterosexuals. Sure, there’s the run of the mill herpes-hep-gonnorhea-chlamydia-HPV-and of course HIV and AIDS. But among our gay men, there were so many of them that were inflicted with painful and sorrowful conditions that I had never even heard of before, like anal cancer, cryptosporidium, giardia lamblia, anal fissures, anorectal trauma, isospora belli, and microsporidia.”

    Is that the truth or did you glean that statement from a religious right study? I ask because the verbiage you use sounds almost verbatim like several phony religious right studies on the lgbt community that I have read over the years.

    Also, I noticed how you moved the conversation regarding sexual intercourse. You again generalize. You see, according to the January 17, 2007 issue of The New York Magazine, the CDC’s National Survey for Family Growth, released in 2006, showed that 38.2 percent of men between 20 and 39 and 32.6 percent of women ages 18 to 44 engage in heterosexual anal sex.

    I question these talking points you are using – “child being intentionally deprived of a mother and father.” There are no studies that say that gays and lesbians are harming children by choosing to have families. Now I know that there are claims that some studies say that “the best place for a child is a home with a mother and a father,” but that is a distortion.

    You see, those studies in question never looked at same sex households. They were studies that looked at two-parent heterosexual households as opposed to one-parent heterosexual housesholds.

    Also promiscuity is not necessary indicative of the lgbt orientation. No study has ever said that. Some studies have pointed to outside conditions such as homophobia and isolation.

    Lastly, let me point out if someone considers themself as “ex-gay” then they wouldn’t try to consume themselves with making the lives of comfortable gays miserable. What does an “ex-gay” have any business with testifying in front of a Congressional committee in an effort to hinder pro-gay laws. If he or she is an ex-gay then the law shouldn’t have any effect on them. You see that is why so many of us gays question the motives of “ex-gays.” You call it a lack of tolerance, we call it exposing lies.

    You make a lot of inaccurate statements and then move the conversation to that of an emotional level. The point here is not an alleged hatred of homosexuality, it’s the exploitation of studies and assumptions to enhance religious beliefs about homosexuality.

    Which you have completely demonstrated.

%d bloggers like this: