The question of if being gay is a choice

Discussion in 'Relationships, Discrimination, and Jealousy' started by meerca223, Apr 16, 2008.

  1. meerca223

    meerca223 New Member

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    Ok, just a question that i had. I know that some (not all) religious people believe that being gay or lesbian is a choice. I am wondering if anyone here is or knows someone who is not religious but also believes that homosexuality is a choice.

    Personally I dont think its a choice. I didnt choose to be gay, i simply am. But i am curious as to other perceptions.

    FYI i was prompted to this by the following link
    Homosexuality: Is It A Choice?
     
  2. marleyisalegend

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    i don't think the desires are a choice, but acting on them is
     
  3. diesel82

    diesel82 New Member

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    I've always thought that if homosexuality is a choice, so is heterosexuality. And to CHOOSE to do something implies that you are not naturally (or automatically) whatever it is that you claim to be. So if someone "chooses" to be gay, another way to look at it is that they no longer wish to be straight. So therefore -are all straight people not actually straight, are they just CHOOSING to be?

    Its like choosing to be african american, I believe. YOu aint got a say in the matter.
     
  4. marleyisalegend

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    i think this is a matter of interpretation because there seems to be differing views on defining homosexuality. i'm old school, if u look at your homeboy and think about anything other than playing basketball, you're gay. i think another perspective that mainstream and especially religion tries to imply is that gay as a choice means to act on your desires, which can be considered a choice. if that's the case, you can have homosexual desires and not be gay if you don't choose to act on those desires
     
  5. DC_DEEP

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    Meerca, there are quite a few on LPSG, actually, who (aggressively) assert that it's a choice, and claim their views are not influenced by religion. They cite example after example, mostly anecdotal, and their reasoning is often self-contradictory. They also tend to use behavior as non-negotiable proof of orientation (thanks, marleyisa), and argue whichever one (behavior or attraction) they think makes any point they have stated.

    I have had relationships with women in the past (behavior), mostly in an attempt to choose to be straight; it didn't work. I am still gay (orientation).

    I did not choose to be gay; I simply am, and always have been.
     
  6. DC_DEEP

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    But again, this is confusing the orientation with the behavior. That logic breaks down if you think about it rationally. By those standards, a straight man is asexual in between fucks, right? If he fucks a woman at 8:00 in the morning, then again at 2:00 in the afternoon, if he's not fucking in between those times, he's asexual? The behavior does not necessarily define the orientation.
     
  7. marleyisalegend

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    like i said, i'm old school, if you get horny thinkin about dudes, you're gay. i was just trying to see it from their perspective although you REALLY broke it down. i guess in the case you're talking about they'd simply call it bisexuality, there really isn't a definition for your sexuality when you're not engaging, it's a general term for lifestyle, not defining every waking moment
     
  8. apple jack daniels

    apple jack daniels New Member

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    Well, it depends. Is liking the colour blue a choice? Sort of, I mean, you can condition yourself a certain way, just by thinking you like the colour blue. If I look at a lot of pictures of Sienna Miller, and think about all the attractive things I like about her face, I get almost smitten, for a short while, and it does have a lasting effect. And then if I think about certain things as unattractive, then I get a bit of a bitter taste. But is the underlying nature a choice? Can be, if you have high will power, know your personal psychology well/are very self aware, and are intelligent enough, yeah, you can take control. It's like the man from a few years back that stopped his heart from doing yoga. Yeah, you can take control, and ultimately affect how you perceive everything, but for the average joe, no. Now do we wanna make this extra cliche and ask if it's environmental or genetic?
     
  9. marleyisalegend

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    no, but wearing a blue t-shirt is. do you understand what i'm saying?? i agree with you a hundred percent, i'm trying to explain/understand the other side. from a christian perspective and i'm only speculating, you can have all the desires you want about men but being gay isn't defined by that so much as by pursuing the lifestyle. i guess some religious fanatics view gay as more of a lifestyle than a sexuality because how many catholics have you heard refer to their predatory priests as gay?? none that i can think of, because i think their point of view about "gay" is that it's a choice in the sense of choosing to go to gay clubs, choosing to sleep with men, choosing to act on something you can't control is still a choice
     
  10. DC_DEEP

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    Yeah, marley, you and I are in complete agreement. It's what goes on between your ears that defines your orientation. Straight men just simply do not spend lots of time thinking about having sex with men.

    That's what is so dangerous about buying into the "orientation is a choice" reasoning, or the "the choice is to act on it or not" reasoning. And don't get me wrong here, but I'm going to take you to task for the use of "lifestyle" in your post.

    Generally speaking, one's choice of behaviors does not determine one's orientation, but rather, one's orientation will influence one's choice of behaviors.

    Another way of looking at it is, I love chocolate. I didn't choose to, but I do. I can choose either to eat chocolate or not to eat chocolate, but neither of those choices affects whether or not I love chocolate. I wish I could choose otherwise, but I cannot choose to dislike chocolate.
     
  11. marleyisalegend

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    i'm with you 100%, looking from the other side i imagine that they condemn us not because we desire men, but because we choose to engage in behavior that caters to those desires, just a guess
     
  12. apple jack daniels

    apple jack daniels New Member

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    Well I can safely say that you're fairly right, among the reasonable Christians who believe that sodomy is wrong, that is along the lines of what their logic is. There's also a bit more to it than that, at least for some, and it has to do with the beginning of Genesis, and the belief in marriage. A man is complete when he finds his wife, and all that, the belief that it takes a man and a woman to join souls, and create a child out of that marriage. But yeah, that still ties into the idea of you're actions defining you, not what you "are" to begin with.
     
  13. frizzle

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    I think both sides of the arguement are theories and can't be proved or disproved, much like religion.
     
  14. B_OtterJoq

    B_OtterJoq New Member

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    It's as much a choice as your eye color was.
     
  15. frizzle

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    Contact lenses disprove your point.
     
  16. Phil Ayesho

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    Again... rather than have my position misrepresented... I will restate it all in one spot.

    I think this is a model that agrees with ALL the evidence thus far presented...

    I think who you are attracted to ... that is, the gender that you have romantic, loving interest in, is pretty well defined by congential development... that is, partly genetic, partly the environment in which you as a fetus developed.

    ( recent research shows prior male children increase the odd of subsequent male children being gay- so conditions in the mother's uterus have an effect that is not strictly genetic )

    In this you have no real choice... however, evidence suggests that this parameter... call it intrinsic gayness... is a variable... ranging from exclusively interested in the same sex... thru attraction to both... to exclusively attracted to the opposite sex.

    And by attracted... I mean driven to respond emotionally.

    Left to itself... this parameter would determine your preference without any conscious choice.



    However... in addition to that built in factor... human beings... and particularly human males, go thru a phase in childhood development where they are particularly sexually precocious.

    During this phase... actual experiences can "condition" you in a way that will have a shaping effect on your adult sexuality.

    For example... if you were born with an exclusively Gay bias in preference... but all your early conditioning is heterosexual... then you might end up living a fairly heterosexual, though unfulfilling, life... even getting married...
    And only come to grips with your inborn preference later in life.

    This takes time because your conditioning results in you being able to respond sexually to women... as a learned behavoir... That this response is lackluster is something you will not clue into until you have had experience with men.


    Similarly, If you were born heterosexually biased... and experienced homosexual play as a child... you might end up being the kind of man who, while falling in love only with women... nevertheless has learned to enjoy circle jerks... cock sucking.. or some other not hetero activity that nevertheless you had exposure to.

    If all it was was seeing other boys erections... you might well end up being a person who thinks and acts perfectly straight... yet really gets off on looking at and talking about other guy's dicks on a website....

    Many fetishes can be traced to distinctive experiences as a child that had a formative effect on your developing sexuality.

    I think this model makes sense because it incorporates human adapatability to new cultural situations.
    It explains certain greek and Guinea tribal cultures in which young boys were removed form their mothers and quite literally "raised gay"... and who had great difficulty, later in life, with marriage and sexual relations with women.


    In short... its Nature AND Nurture... but because the formative experiences of nurture happen to you as a child... and usually you have little control over the form they take...
    there really is very little "choice" involved.

    You are fluent in the language you were raised with...

    You weren't born speaking it... but you were born with an inherent ability to acquire language specifically at a certain age.

    As a child you picked it up because your genes acted to prime you for language at a specific developmental age.

    But is your fluency in your native tongue something you CHOSE?

    Not really..


    In sexuality...
    born with an inherent preference, or mix of preferences.

    Formative experiences as a child "shape" those inborn preferences.



    And yes... I think some people can get beyond their programming.... both genetic and experiential... and learn to love anything that affords pleasure by simply eliminating their prejudices and feelings of guilt.


    But I don't think you can "learn" to fall in romantic love with the gender you are not born to prefer.

    Therefore... I don't think your sexual activity, per se, defines gayness. I think its defined by who you want to share your life with... who you go weak kneed over...
     
  17. B_boynextdoorkpt

    B_boynextdoorkpt New Member

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    Yea being gay is the question on the the survey you feel out before you were born, it follows
    eye color?
    Right hand/left hand?
    hair color?
    skin color?


    please are we not over this now!!!!!!!! ITS NOT A CHOICE
     
  18. marleyisalegend

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    i'm gay myself but i understand the argument from the other side that pursuing the lifestyle IS a choice
     
  19. F_Man

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    thinking is good, but trying terribly to understand THE OTHER SIDE in your question, you place YOURSELF and them in neat little boxes that have little to do with life and its possibilities. it's better if you try to understand yourself, and be true to yourself. it might be healthy to pursue your own interests, based on who you think are, what you aspire to be, what you learn, how you interact with people, and what life brings!

    someone trying to control or "value" the sex life of others is very possibly either miserable, a closet sex-maniac, or power-hungry who wishes to gain something by this control.

    an outsider judging others based on assumptions of their "life styles" won't have a clue.

    one has to decide whom to listen to for support and advice. for instance, i won't pain my days listening to my stupidest, meanest relatives, or the religious right's latest witch hunts, or the neo-nazies claims for Hitler's sainthood... one can choose which other side to try to understand:)
     
  20. marleyisalegend

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    maybe i should've elaborated, my parents raised me christian and although i never (still haven't) come out to them, our pastor preached about homosexuality in this light: having sexual desires for men is a sin (guess i'm guilty as charged) but pursuing that lifestyle, hooking up with men, ENGAGING in those desires is what warrants the title 'gay lifestyle'. i don't care either way i love dick i guess i was just trying to bring another perspective into the discussion. obviously most of us here are going to (and have posted) that it's not a choice i thought this could've been a one-sided thread
     
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