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Is sexuality fixed from birth or does it change later in life?

Discussion in 'Sexual Orientation' started by Obliteratrix47, Aug 20, 2023.

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  1. JT1999

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    I'm more inclined to believe this than sexuality being something hard-coded by your genes. If there was a gay gene, wouldn't they have found it by now?

    My own personal story fits this, because I never had any same-sex thoughts or desires at all until after sleeping with a girl a few times. I only did it the first time because I was a bit drunk and my guards were down, I didn't know it at the time but she basically planned to get me in bed for that reason after a night of drinking, very close dancing and "lets kiss to make those boys over there horny haha". The 2nd, 3rd, nth times was just because the 1st time was so good, I still didn't really have any attraction to women. That only really started to appear a lot of time later.
     
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  2. AnxiousReader

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    I agree with this. I never had any homosexual thoughts at all really growing up. I was certain I was straight. Didn’t even explore the idea fully till I was in my very early twenties. Now though I don’t know how I didn’t realize my attraction sooner. I actually identify as mostly gay now. So I went from one end of the scale to the other.
     
  3. AnxiousReader

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    I will say that sexuality can be sneaky. In my case I feel like a huge part of my sexuality, maybe even my real sexuality all along, was completely inaccessible to me for over a decade. I’ve tried to puzzle out why that might be and honestly I think it was internalized misogyny. I struggled with that so much as a teen and I think with all that going on there was no way I was in a good place mentally to be able to explore attraction to women. It took working through that in order for me to actually figure out my feelings.
     
  4. Colm

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    Sounds like a conversion therapy brochure.

    Have they found a straight gene?
     
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  5. JT1999

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    I’m no geneticist but I don’t think there’s a straight gene either.

    Maybe there’s something within us that plays a part and makes us more inclined to swing one way or the other, but I’m pretty confident our upbringing and experiences play a big part in the development of sexuality. Probably not a popular opinion but it’s what I think.
     
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  6. AnxiousReader

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    I don’t think saying that sexuality is fluid for many people is equal to supporting conversion therapy. Someone can believe sexuality isn’t fixed from birth and also not feel that it’s right to force people to be straight.
     
  7. JT1999

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    With enough time & effort you can train a human brain to believe and feel just about anything. From a psychological perspective conversion therapy can probably work but no doubt it also causes lots of harm too. It’s the whole ‘force’ aspect that I find most disgusting about it, because I’m sure the majority of it is people being outright forced or coerced into it, and no doubt they are the most vulnerable people too. And of course, there is nothing wrong with being gay, and so the whole idea of being ‘cured’ is just plain offensive.
     
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  8. AnxiousReader

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    I completely agree. I think conversion therapy is abhorrent and I would never support it. Homosexuality is not something that needs to be “fixed.”
     
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  9. Searching2022

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    There are some theories that sexuality or spectrum is easier to imprint in the teen years- and the theory is that its a adaptation for varying cultures and environments.
    There are people who claim it has worked for them and there are others who said having a deep spiritual experience changed them. Many people here will write it off but we can't have it both ways - we can't say only you can decide, or accept people's self identity but disregard it when its a result we don't like.

    I think the many of the stories about such therapies are overblown just because people don't like the idea- of course there are bad therapists and bad practices -but -is it any more dangerous than giving children mind and body altering drugs?

    It might be something that someone doesn't want in their lives for any number of legitimate reasons. There are plenty of people who practice sexual abstinence or resist temptations to have affairs outside relationships so its not unreasonable I think to respect people when they make personal decisions about their sexual desires.
     
    #89 Searching2022, Sep 29, 2023
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  10. AnxiousReader

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    I don’t support giving children harmful drugs either. So for me there is no inherent contradiction.
     
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  11. JT1999

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    I'd agree with you on the teen years thing. As a teenager I felt so free of inhibitions. If I hadn't done the things I did as a teenager I don't think I ever would have done them as an adult. I do sometimes cringe when I look back at some of the more stupid things I did but overall it was pretty positive. If all the energy I put into chasing after girls had gone towards guys, I dread to think of the bad situations I might have gotten into and I worry about girls that do that. I have a younger cousin who might be on that path but she just can't be told anything.

    About the therapies, there's a big difference between trying to discover, explore or influence your own sexuality and having someone else try to do it to you. If someone has genuinely unwanted sexual desires I don't see the harm in them being able to see a therapist with a view to stopping those desires. But no-one should be pressured into it either by individuals or by society as a whole.
     
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  12. Searching2022

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    yes agree, but someone should be allowed to voluntarily seek out such therapy.
     
  13. Ran

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    I can't see anything good about conversion therapy or any similar therapy that is used to repress your urges. Conversion therapy for example offers harmful practices, like using shame, nausea-producing drugs, electrical shocks and hormone altering drugs. It's inhumane. It increases mental health issues even more and it has no standards to practice this type of therapy. There is no evidence that this works.

    Being gay or identifying as any other sexual identity is not a pyschiatric disorder as defined by the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders, Fifth Edition (DSM-5). Earlier versions had considered any divergence from heterosexual or cisgender expression to be forms of mental illness.

    Sexual identity and gender identity cannot be changed by external forces or pressure. These efforts often instead result in shame and supression of true identity, increasing a person’s risk for mental health problems.

    Internalized homophobia often leads someone to punish themselves for having thoughts and feelings about someone's sexual orientation and seek out such therapies. It is possible to overcome internalized homophobia, but it has to be an ongoing practice and suppression won't help here either.
     
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  14. Chiroptera

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    No because it isn't therapy as in scientific proven therapy method. It has been proven numerous times that the so-called "conversion therapy" is actually harmful and based on prejudice, forcing people to supress their own feelings.

    Accepting this atrocity as a valid "therapy" is like saying it's ok for someone to call themselves a doctor while suggesting people should drink rat poison to cure headaches or use bloodletting as a way to let "lazyness go away" so people become more inteligent. It simply does not make sense and is actually extremely harmful.

    The problem is in prejudice, violence and lack of acceptance. It's not in loving in a way that isn't considering the "standard" of society.
     
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  15. Searching2022

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    Electrical shocks were used for quitting cigarettes…. Fifty years ago
    Provide me some modern examples of ‘conversion therapy doing that

    let’s start with defining the practice as the practioncers not you, explain them


    What about religious programs that simply say that there is a spiritually solution and that many people who have had spiritual transformation say their sexuality changed. Yes you can bring up people who reverted but many did no t what do you say about them? Is their testimony invalid?

    ALL I am saying is people have a righ[t to seek this if they want. There was a psychologist who tried to raise twins as two different genders as an experiment does that invalidate transgender claims?

    I am happy being gay but I respect of someone has a reason for taking a different path
     
    #95 Searching2022, Sep 30, 2023
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  16. Searching2022

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    If you define the opposing view as that how can you ever expect to understand them, yet you demand they understand you.

    ‘it’s really easy to say anyone who disagrees with you is ignorant. Plato I think had philosophical objections to homosexuality was this out of ignorance?
    I am not saying you or I agreee but defining your opponents this way is intellectually lazy
     
    #96 Searching2022, Sep 30, 2023
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  17. Searching2022

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    I believe the psychologist who advocated for removing homosexuality as a disorder did a study showing some therapies were successful with some people but heavy political pressure forced him to retract and write an apology - when I see retractions like that I get skeptical
    When you try so hard to say that there is no way ever the science is settled only deniers say blah brash blah I get skeptical

    do you really believe for example that the many spiritual transformations of people who say they were gay but no longer are are invalid? Or they are lying? If so why do you not believe them but accept any claim here abo[ut sexuality? If that works for them I am happy for them. I am happy being gay I don’t see a contradiction
     
    #97 Searching2022, Sep 30, 2023
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  18. Ran

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    Going to say my mood is not great thanks to all these claims. It's making me more emotional, because I've actually dealt with it all.


    Everyone has right to do with themselves what they want, but we don't advocate for it. Science has evolved and you don't need to use electrical shocks anymore. Sexual orientation is different from cicarette usage. Cicarette usage is an addiction.

    I've tried to supress my feelings for 27 years. It has given me serious mental health issues and I was suicidal, because of it all. It may work for some time, but not forever.

    It's all common sence not disagreeing with someone's beliefs.

    Now dare to tell me again you can supress it all.
     
  19. Colm

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    Lying to themselves, yeah. They might believe their own lie because they desperately want to. Religion is good at redirecting repressed sexuality, but a repressed, celibate, religious gay person is still gay. That's why it's important to state that being gay is inherent, not a choice, and not subject to change. I can't believe there is someone on here actually arguing for conversion therapy.
     
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  20. Searching2022

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    I am advocating for CHOICE. If someone can have irreversible surgery because they think they are a different gender you can't tell me that this should be banned if its their own free will.

    Also it is extremely presumptuous to assume YOU know that they are thinking or that they are lying to themselves. You are not them you don't know what they are experiencing.
    You don't think it is at all possible that people have had profound religious experiences and have their sexuality changed? Well some claim they have. Why do you not believe them but believe people here when they say they were born in the wrong body?
     
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