Where does the gay lifestyle come from?

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An unexpected from my sister (the only living relative with whom I communicate):

Do you think the gay lifestyle is heriditary or just a choice?

My brief reply:

There isn't a 'gay lifestyle.' There are monogamous and promiscuous gay people. Some are artsy like the stereotypes others are just plain working class men and women.

Don't think it is in the genes. It certainly isn't a choice.

There are an incalculable number of things we're exposed to growing up. I'm sure there are many mixtures that make someone queer.

Now if we could only do something about that oppressive heterosexual lifestyle.


Not in the genes & not a choice but soemthing you are exposed to growing up (abuse, mom, dad). Give me some insight, I need to understand this choice from someone I trust. I have a 17 yr old son that reminds me alot of you in alot of ways.

Richard, It has been 18yrs since I have seen you.

I tried to reply to first email but AOL bounced it back.

Probably many subtle things.

In my case, and only in my case:

I’m not sure how clear it is to you how much I feared Daddy as a little kid. He was drinking back then so his temper was even worse. While I certainly felt he was nasty to me it wasn’t nearly as bad as he was with Momma.

Momma was my island of refuge. Her unconditional love probably did me some harm but mostly I think enabled me to survive emotionally and eventually mature.

In my particular case I think I identified with her. Which didn’t stop me from turning out masculine. Ever since I realized I find other guys attractive I’ve been fairly sure this was at least part of the cause.

I didn’t suspect when I was seventeen. But back then things were far more hidden and it was hard for a gay man to lead a happy life. Not a problem nowadays.

How does he remind me of you? Plenty of heterosexual males are bookish and antisocial: probably my two main qualities as a young man. Well aside from desperately needing to get out of home and Savannah.

You could just ask him as long as you make it clear that you won’t love him any less if he should say that he is gay.

Happy to help you if I can.


What is this about “choosing to be heterosexual or homosexual’? – Think instead of being right handed or left-handed. But, being left handed, always acting right-handed - as awkward and as uncomfortable as that might be at times. Maintained always in public and often, by so much repetition and practice, in private as well. What if being left-handed drew attention, derision, ridicule, exclusion, taunting, rejection, inequality - and unequal access to civil rights and privileges? What if you spent your life acting right handed such that even your best friends or your family or your coworkers would never suspect? Perhaps you’d even flaunt your practiced right-handed penmanship to bolster you right-handed subterfuge? What if you cried at night from the effort and energy and pain of the constant lying – such that you become confused as to who you are or what you had done to be born this way?

Suppose it meant that you were exclusively attracted to left handed people – OK, once in a while to a really hot right-handed person or someone who was ambidextrous – but if you saw a right-handed person walking down the street with a left handed person – you would find yourself focused in on the left-handed person.

Because society taught you that left-handedness was evil, sinful, immoral, corrupt, such that one of the worst epithets one could call another was, “hey you lefty’”. “Yeah, lefty, why don’t you go off and pee with your left hand, pervert”.

And if lefties would somehow be quicker to sense the subtle uncomfortableness and awkwardness of the masquerade, and through glances and innuendo acknowledge each other one to the other.

Or they could in some places meet late in the night at desolate and out of the way venues where few rightees, or at least few rightwing rightees, might be encountered. And there they would meet all the lefties – toasting to each other, glasses held high by proud left hands.

But then, being left-handed is so different from being homosexual.

Or is it?

thanks i read it all and makes sense i have been bi i suppose for 40 yrs but whatever allways hope u good luck thanks bob fr va

I don’t care for the essay above, seeming to blame “daddy” and his drinking for the author’s turning out gay. Many, many gay men have WONDERFUL relatinoships with their fathers (I”m one of them—my MOTHER was the problem in my house [can you say “Mommie Dearest”?] My belief as to the cause of sexuality is not environment, but hormonal. I believe that in utero, gay people are somehow exposed to a slightly different “cocktail” or estrogens and androgens at “just the right time”, which may “confuse” the brain regarding sexual desire. this may or may not be genetically related (they DO find some evidence of genetics, though it is not a simple dominant/resessive thing), which could point to a tendency for whatever hormonal triggers cause this.

The “environmental” argument is one used by our enemies—especially the “distant or abusive father” argument. This belief is quite dangerous and leads to “reparative therapy” over something that is not a problem that can be fixed (well, not a “problem” at all, of course). I truly belieev gay people are born that way—whether it is genetic, hormonal, or even as a result somehow of stresses during pregnancy. Claiming that some “trauma” early in life make people gay just perpetuates the notion that it is “curable with therapy”.

I said:

“In my case, and only in my case … “


“I’m sure there are many mixtures that make someone queer.”

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