Is Being Gay Natural or a Choice?

Don’t you think that people are overly sensitive about the issues and debates that are being raised in today’s media? Anything you say can easily be penalised under the scrupulous eye of the public, or any picture posted on the internet can fall under criticism depending on the context of the image. In academic terms, this is called ‘intertextuality’ where we establish the relationship between what we think and the content, but where do we get this intertextuality from?

Gay couple holding hands

A quick initial summary

If you’re already bored of me, this point is vital to be aware of when it comes to the topic about homosexuality and the debate about being born as a gay person and choosing to be a gay person. I’m going to start this article with the initial assumption that the answer is inconclusive. There isn’t a conclusion that is in black and white like in the 1950s, or even in the 1930s when organisations created gay camps to convert people from homosexuality, which most of the time has failed as a result.

In this generation, we as a society have become accepting to people who have different sexual orientations, if I were to put it in a satirical term it has become the latest trend now. However, after being told for decades that accepting a different sexuality is frowned up, it is now stigmatised if you don’t want to be the accepting one.

I want to elaborate on this notion a little later because this is something that only occurred a couple of years ago. I believe you will know if you like boys or girls, when I was in my teen years I realised that I’m sexually attracted to both boys and girls. I’ve been questioning myself for years before I drew myself to that conclusion – notice that I’m not using the word ‘bisexual’ as I will tell you later on in this text.

‘Baby, I was born this way!’

You must have read an article from a major magazine or newspaper about scientific research stating that homosexuality is genetic. You hear about these specialists taking DNA from a selection of people and making the comparison between the two people with different orientations and have established certain differences between the two.

I’ve had a recent conversation with a friend where we were just having fun and talking about what we would do if we did so and so. So, in this case, we were talking about what it would be like if we were in an open relationship, where we discussed our fetishes and what turned each other on. He said that he would get as hard as a rock if he did a threesome with me and another guy where he can see me getting double penetrated. Then I asked him whether it would turn him on if he’s fucking me with the other guy fucking him at the same time, and he said ‘Nah, it just doesn’t turn me on.’ When asking a question relating to sexual orientation, most of the answers would be purely pragmatic. It can be the same when you’re talking about your favourite ice cream flavour.

“Oh, what kind of ice cream do you like?”

“Butter scotch.”

“Really? Why?”

“Because I like it, I always have since I was a child.”

It’s the same logic when it comes to sexuality.

“So, which way do you swing?”

“I like men.”

“Oh, you’re gay?”


“Why do you like guys?”

“Because I do, I always have since I was a child.”

I don’t want to explain this in psychological terms as I don’t have any qualification in the subject, nor do I have a degree in sociology or social sciences. We don’t know enough about the chemicals in our brain that gets our dicks hard by the sight of Charlie Hunnam plastered on the front of GQ magazine.

Changing the way we think

However, if you have to bring in other factors that could result in someone being a homosexual. Think back to your biology classes in high school, when you’re researching on the growth of algae you have to consider other factors that can affect that growth, like the amount of sunlight and heat for example, the same can be said for a person when you think about the kind of culture or environment he or she grew up in. The LGBT crew disapproves of the idea that being attracted to the same sex is something that you’re born with. They follow the notion that sexuality is fluid, and that you can swing whatever way you want or what feels best for you. Yet I think people get that mixed up with the term ‘pansexuality’ when you are attracted to the person his or herself rather than the sex of that person. That is where some groups and organisations are against the use of labelling, where they define someone as ‘gay’, ‘lesbian’, ‘bisexual’ or whatever.

Going back to the idea of acceptance, a lot of countries are becoming more liberal about this subject, when people are more accepting and open to being attracted to the same sex, there is now an internal stigma if you choose to not accept the community into your culture, especially if you’re a cis-gendered person.

You might want to have a hot cup of tea or coffee at hand here because I’m going to feed you with a lot of information that will make sense in the long run.

Being a collective and not an individual

Back at my university, I wrote a dissertation relating to digital media, and my question was ‘does 20th Century media glamourise deviancy in youth culture?’ I’ve been looking up a term called ‘sequential mode’ where we do something that would give you a reputation within a social consensus, such as your circle of friends. If you see more than one person doing the same kind of activity, your whole group will gradually get involved in that activity, because it’s seen as cool in the clique.

When I was college, I was befriended by a group of girls who like other girls, or lesbians if you want to give them a title, and they were always talking about their experiences they’ve had with their same-sex relationships, along with jokes about straight guys and girls. I didn’t realise it at first, but I slowly started getting involved with their banter and their ideas. No one in that group seemed to have talked about straight couples in a positive light. Neutral, maybe, but nothing that exaggerates the good things about being a girl who likes guys. I remember one friend talking about how she caught a guy jacking off in his car to a page 3 girl in the ‘The Sun’ tabloid, and then said ‘no wonder I like girls.’

I’m not sure if anyone else has had the same experience or internal feeling as I did, but it felt bad if I expressed my past times with guys, or if I find a male college student walking across the campus and say that he looks handsome mainly because the whole group would disapprove or disregard it. I also remember another friend trying to flirt with me on MSN chat – this is years ago – and she asked me “Why do you still like men? You know women are amazing in bed, they’re so much better than guys!”

Spotting the vicious cycle

Looking back at it now, this is a huge contradiction to what the LGBT community are preaching. They say that sexuality is fluid, yet you have some people, if not all, trying to put you down just because you simply don’t find the same-sex attractive, or do what some people did to me and try to sway my sexual orientation. This kind of activity can lead to two things. It can make a person develop a gender/identity crisis and will only leave them confused in who they are and what they want to be, the other result would be that the person will following the social consensus and choose to be gay or a lesbian.

I can’t help but laugh at the irony of this matter, though. Back in the 1930s, Christians believe that the homosexuality is a choice. Throughout the decades, the LGBT community has stated that people who are gay are born that way and that they can’t change it. Now they’re saying that it is a choice and that people can choose which sexual orientation to want to follow like I’ve mentioned before, this notion has only a year or two ago! There is now a passive aggressive intention that we should choose to be sexually open, we should choose to be accepting of the LGBT collective, and we should choose to agree with everything they say. Can you see where I’m going with this?

Remember that Roxette song, ‘Listen to your heart’?

There is one thing I do agree with in the community, and it is that you can’t deny what you truly feel and who you are meant to be as a person, and that you would already have had a clear idea about it when you were at a young age. I mean, look at that one episode of ‘Glee’, the character Kurt comes out to his Father that he is gay, and the Dad’s reply was that he already knew since Kurt was 3 years old when he asked him for a ‘pair of sensible heels’ for his birthday, and I know that in reality, many people can relate to this point.

Then again, the development of our brains is like the latest fashion up on the high street, there is always something new every season. Unfortunately, the answer is still open-ended. You never know how the mind or people overall can think in the future.

Zoe Jaspers
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