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» Scarleteen Boards: 2000 - 2014 (Archive) » SCARLETEEN CENTRAL » Sexual Identity » genetic?

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Author Topic: genetic?
Nailo
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It is my opinion that people are actually born gay or bisexual. From my personal experience (and that of other gay friends of mine), its something you have in you since childhood, since even before you start having relationships. Heck, I would get sad if a female model didn't come out on the cover of the tv guide when I was 5! And my second crush was on a girl when I was 6. Before that, I had no contact with girls, as my best friend/ next door neighbour was a boy.

I found it interesting that my mother agrees with me that it's part of you since you're born, but she has another reason. She says she feels that most gay guys (at least the "feminine" type) have similar physical traits. Something in the throat and chin, she said. Just thought that was interesting. My boyfriend has the theory that everyone has the possibility to be attracted to both men and women, but whether or not you do depends on social reasons.

The subject really interests me. I plan to do a 4000+ word essay on it next year. What do you all think?

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"Love does not make itself in the desire for copulation, but in the desire for shared sleep." - The Unbearable Lightness of Being, Milan Kundera

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Heather
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Today is a big, busy day for me, but I'll do my best to shoot you some reading tomorrow, Nailo.

Because ultimately, there's just no support for that theory. There's support for SOME aspects of orientation being perhaps genetic in PART, but that's about as much as can be supported. (There is NO support, btw, for there being physical "traits" per orientation. You can look up an attempted study done a while back where that was tried with hand shape and size, and see how that went.)

But: there IS support for MANY aspects of sexuality, including orientation, being, instead, linked to very early childhood, and then absolutely to developmental experiences as we grow. You having no contact with other girls doesn't mean much: you have a mother, you are female yourself, and the two things you listed (the magazine cover and the crush) may or may not have had anything to do with sexual orientation, anyway, but may, instead, have been about gender identity.

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Heather Corinna, Executive Director & Founder, Scarleteen
About Me Get our book!
Never doubt that a small group of thoughtful, committed citizens can change the world. Indeed, it is the only thing that ever has. - Margaret Mead

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Heather
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I did dig up one piece I wanted to point you to on this topic, a sort of collective review on a bunch of studies and theories regarding orientation and genetics:

http://psyweb2.ucdavis.edu/Herek/courses/Library/Rahman_03.pdf

It -- you'll see when you read -- is clearly not without bias, dismisses some pretty obvious cultural issues, and isn't exactly what I'd call queer-friendly, but it is pretty exhaustive, and lists a lot of the other studies you'd want to look at in one place.

(What's interesting in a lot of these studies is that you'll see that lesbian women are often the fly in the ointment: theories that might have held water with gay males go kapoofie a lot of the time, or don't hold up, once you add lesbian women to the mix.)

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Heather Corinna, Executive Director & Founder, Scarleteen
About Me Get our book!
Never doubt that a small group of thoughtful, committed citizens can change the world. Indeed, it is the only thing that ever has. - Margaret Mead

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Ikeren
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Actually, I recall seeing a very impressive math project.

It concluded that global warming is the result of a decline in the number of pirates.

Basically, research was done to estimate the number of pirates. He correlated it on a graph since the 1600's.

He overlayed a graph of global temperature.

And they more or less match exactly.

The point? You have circumstancial or coincidental evidence. I am more than welcome to believe that I am god, but that doesn't make it any more true. Even if I back it up by saying "I've never met anybody with more divine power than me, and I look exactly like God, because the Bible tells me I was made in God's own image."

(Interesting article, from the abstract. I'll read it when I find time).

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19, male, interested in Sadomasochism (BDSM) and some bisexual tendancies.

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Heather
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That's a fantastic example!

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Heather Corinna, Executive Director & Founder, Scarleteen
About Me Get our book!
Never doubt that a small group of thoughtful, committed citizens can change the world. Indeed, it is the only thing that ever has. - Margaret Mead

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origami_jane
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OMG, Ikeren! The Church of the Flying Spaghetti Monster!

http://www.venganza.org/

That's the site if anyone's interested.

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-Lauren-
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Yes! Pastafarians unite!

[ 05-01-2006, 02:10 AM: Message edited by: Miss Lauren ]

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September
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Oh Gosh, I want one of those T-shirts. This is awesome.

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Johanna
Scarleteen Volunteer

"The question is not who will let me, but who is going to stop me." -Ayn Rand

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Ikeren
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Actually, regarding the first post.


I plan to do a 4000+ word essay on it next year. What do you all think?

Are you arguing for or against? If you do decide to argue for, your best be is arguing that genetics and psychological factors are inseperable. Basically, genetics cover some very basic physical traits. Relate those basic physical traits to life. Then relate life to conditioning. For example:

If you were born in 1993 in Rwanda with the genetic appearence and make up of a Hutu, you would be told that Tutsis are evil, they to deserve to die, and thus, your physical and genetic (proven with actual science) effect your behavioural, mental and psychological.

Try to relate physical characteristics that actually are scientifically proven to be genetic, to basic development and social/psychological conditions. Then try to relate that the psychological conditions that people guess are partially responsible for homosexuality.

But it is a weak case and a weak connection either way. You don't prove that homosexuality is genetic, you prove that genetic factors can lead to social factors that can lead to homosexuality (are the factors causing homosexuality solidly determined yet? If they aren't at least guessed at, you are SoL, don't even try to write this essay). But that is probably the best you can do if you want to avoid pseudo-science and hearsay...which I presume you would in a lenthy essay. I mean, if you are writing drivel, why wast e the time of making it long?

Either way, I'd argue against the essay. The most logical and scientific support would be purely conditional with a bit of genetics - and only a bit of genetics because sometimes genetics relate to condition, as I based the opposite counter essay around as well...

[ 05-05-2006, 08:55 PM: Message edited by: Ikeren ]

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19, male, interested in Sadomasochism (BDSM) and some bisexual tendancies.

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Nailo
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Just to clarify, I would only make it 4000 words long because I have to. Its the extended essay necessary for the IB program.

I completely agree with Mz. S with regard to women; though my mother may have noticed similarities in gay men, she couldn't tell that I'm bisexual.

Ideally, I would want to make the essay on why people are gay, why I think more people are coming out now, include some anectdotes of other people/myself. I also wanted to talk about transsexuality. I had a trans friend who told me that her psychiatrist had said that that does seem to have genetic factors in it. Plus, I would include the sex change process. But I don't know if I can make the essay mostly psychological or not.
P.S: the thing about the pirates is really something [Razz] thanks for sharing

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"Love does not make itself in the desire for copulation, but in the desire for shared sleep." - The Unbearable Lightness of Being, Milan Kundera

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jas72
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quote:
Originally posted by Nailo:
Just to clarify, I would only make it 4000 words long because I have to. Its the extended essay necessary for the IB program.

I completely agree with Mz. S with regard to women; though my mother may have noticed similarities in gay men, she couldn't tell that I'm bisexual.

Ideally, I would want to make the essay on why people are gay, why I think more people are coming out now, include some anectdotes of other people/myself. I also wanted to talk about transsexuality. I had a trans friend who told me that her psychiatrist had said that that does seem to have genetic factors in it. Plus, I would include the sex change process. But I don't know if I can make the essay mostly psychological or not.
P.S: the thing about the pirates is really something [Razz] thanks for sharing

ah, the good old extended essay. [Smile] ha
i did ib, too. i did my EE on like, colonization in Puerto Rico. it was incredibly boring. i wish i would have chosen a different topic. i did get to write it in spanish, though, which was fun.
anyway, sorrry- off topic

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Ikeren
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I had a trans friend who told me that her psychiatrist had said that that does seem to have genetic factors in it.

As a pointed out - if you try hard enough, you can connect genetics to anything.

Genetics>>>Appearence>>>How people treat you (Imagine you are a grotesquely ugly baby/child from 1-12. People avoid you, gasp upon seeing you. Think it may effect your life?)

Either way, it is possible: I don't know much about transsexuality. I do know that there are not direct genetic factors related to homosexuality as far as modern science can tell.

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19, male, interested in Sadomasochism (BDSM) and some bisexual tendancies.

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greenapp1es
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My boyfriend learned in biology that 80% of the world's population is born with at least some tendancies leaning towards bisexual...only roughly 10% are born strictly gay or strictly straight (with about 1% asexual falling in somewhere)...and that cultural factors and socialization influence the rest. I'm not sure how accurate this is, but I'll see if I can dig up any research on it. I'll also try talking to him about what types of "tendancies" they were referring to. Don't necessarily put too much stock in this until I am able to find backup for it....but I'll see what I can do. I did find it kind of interesting though...
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Heather
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quote:
My boyfriend learned in biology that 80% of the world's population is born with at least some tendancies leaning towards bisexual
The absolute problem, however, in a thesis like that is that we have NO way of proving such a thing.

Infants, at birth, do not give any indication whatsoever what their sexual orinetation is. None. Even as early as five or six years of age, when we might find *some* indicators of orientation (but still, doubtful so early, and so far before sexual development really begins), that's five or six years of living at home and in the world.

The only way to prove that orientation is genetic would be if we could rear someone in a vacuum, and thus, isolate (by removing) cultural factors. Which isn't possible.

--------------------
Heather Corinna, Executive Director & Founder, Scarleteen
About Me Get our book!
Never doubt that a small group of thoughtful, committed citizens can change the world. Indeed, it is the only thing that ever has. - Margaret Mead

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Ikeren
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My boyfriend learned in biology that 80% of the world's population is born with at least some tendancies leaning towards bisexual...only roughly 10% are born strictly gay or strictly straight (with about 1% asexual falling in somewhere)...
_____________________________________________________

I believe I know where that came from. One of the Kinsey Reports (1990?) Estimated that 80% of people had the capacity to partake and enjoy bisexual activities, with roughly 10% on the pure heterosexual and 10% on the pure homosexual side. The report did not guess what caused that, but it was a purely statistic based analysis I believe.

The biology teacher obviously tossed a bit of a bias in...

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19, male, interested in Sadomasochism (BDSM) and some bisexual tendancies.

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