The Psychology Behind Homosexuality: Nature or Nurture?
- A timeline of the earliest documented findings in reference to homosexuality.
"Homosexuality is as old as mankind..."
However, in this article, I plan to focus on some of the “recent” happenings within the scientific community; in regards to homosexuality and the nature or nurture debate.
I hope to explain why theorists believe the way they do and what evidence they have to base those beliefs on.
Is Homosexuality a Mental Disorder?
Homosexuality was originally thought to be a mental disorder as recorded by the American Psychological Association (APA) in the Diagnostic Statistical Manual of Mental Health (DSM). It was only after intense research and uproar that homosexuality was removed from the DSM by the APA in the year 1973.
Thank You Evelyn Hooker
Evelyn Hooker is better known as the woman whose research was responsible for the removal of homosexuality from the DSM.
Evelyn's' studies focused on small control groups with similar IQ's, education, and socioeconomic statuses.
Hookers' findings concluded that homosexuality was not a mental disorder but rather a choice.
The statistics of Hooker's research led to the removal of homosexuality from the DSM; again thank you Evelyn Hooker for paving the road towards the way to acceptance.
The scientific community...
the inquisitive beings they are; MUST ask questions.
Certainly this new found personality trait has it's standing in the mental health community.
If homosexuality is no longer classified as a mental disorder what is it?
What contributes to it? Are people born gay? Is it environmental? Hereditary? What's the deal?
Things are never "just because" within the scientific community.
So without further ado.....
Homosexuality and Nature: More Information
- The Science Of Sexual Orientation - CBS News
60 Minutes on CBS News: The Science Of Sexual Orientation - Researchers Focus On Twins
- Gay At Birth? - New York Times
Some people say we should settle gay rights disputes on the basis of the Old Testament. I say we should rely on blinking patterns.In case you've misplaced your latest copy of Behavioral
- Born Gay? - TIME
Studies of family trees and DNA make the case that male homosexuality is in the genes
- The Real Story on Gay Genes | Sex & Gender | DISCOVER Magazine
The Nature Debate of Homosexuality.
Some of the research explained below supports the theories that homosexuality is in fact a genetic difference between human beings. Please keep in mind this is only SOME of the research.
Scientists D.F. Swaab, Laura S. Allen, and Simon LeVay focused their studies on postmortem examination of the hypothalamus (“the pleasure center”) areas of the brain. Their findings were similar; some parts of hypothalamus were larger in that of homosexual brains than in the brains of proclaimed heterosexuals.
Testing The Neuroendocrine Systems
The idea behind this theory is that sexual orientation is determined by early (prenatal) exposure to androgen's in regards to the neural structures. These tests are focused on the theory that if a fetus is exposed to higher than normal androgen's the fetus will be "masculineized” regardless of predetermined gender.If the fetus is exposed to less than "normal" levels of androgen's in utero the fetus will become "feminized".
Studies conducted on male homosexual twins seem to suggest that the more closely genetically linked a pair is, the more likely they both are to exhibit gay tendencies.
During the examination of family trees of openly gay men a maternal link was discovered. DNA samples from homosexual men were obtained and genetically examined. A correlation was made for 5 genetic markers on section of the X-Chromosome mainly on the mothers’ side.
Homosexuality and Nurture: More Resources
- What Causes Homosexual Desire - Dr. Cameron
Most of us fail to understand why anyone would want to engage in homosexual activity. To the average person, the very idea is either puzzling or repugnant. Indeed, a recent survey (1) indicated that only 14% of men and 10% of women imagined that such
- Gender nonconformity in kids is relatively common: study - Los Angeles Times
Children whose behavior doesn't conform to gender expectations -- girls who swing swords and play with trucks, boys who tend to dolls and are drawn to high heels and frilly dresses -- are only
- THE SOCIAL CONSTRUCTION OF HOMOSEXUALITY
Let me risk oversimplification and divide the theories that have been proposed into two categories; I will call them the planophysical theories and the doliophysical theories
- Is male homosexuality maintained via kin selection?
Abstract: We tested the kin selection hypothesis of male homosexuality using questionnaire data...
The Nurture Debate of Homosexuality.
The testing below supports the theory that homosexuality is influenced by one's environment. The research studies below suggest that homosexuality is indeed a product of one's environment (nurture). Please note only SOME of the research the nurture argument of homosexuality is represented.
Gender Identification (Gender ID)
This theory suggests that children begin to identify with one gender or another early on. It is argued that children are "taught" which gender to identify with. A simple explanation of this would be boys were blue, play sports etc. Girls wear pink, do ballet etc. By manipulating our children we are in essence conforming to the theory of Parental Manipulation.
This theory suggests that children born into a family where a homosexual siblings is already practicing non-conforming gender identity paves the way for other children to do the same.
How We Relate To Care Givers
This idea suggests that a weak father and strong mother may lead to a homosexual son. Mainly because the mother has too strong of an image, compared to the "weak" state of the father. However SOME do argue that the son may become more masculinised in an "attempt" to make up for the father's weak image.
The Depth of Desire Theory
This theory suggests that homosexuality is strictly confined to sexual desire and that homosexuality is nothing more than superficial tastes and preferences. Theoretically a child or young adult could choose a preference for one organ (penis or vagina) over the other. With no other factors coming into play.
Are individuals born gay?
Did You Know?
- According to the American Psychological Association sexual orientation is not a choice, "it emerges for most in early adolescence (9-15) with no prior sexual experience".
- Research shows that kids with extreme gender nonconformity usually grow up to be gay.
- In 1975 the APA released a public statement that homosexuality was not a mental disorder. In 1994, the APA finally stated, "...homosexuality is neither a mental illness nor a moral depravity. It is the way a portion of the population expresses human love and sexuality".
- Most social theorists see childhood elements and/or environments as the largest contributing factors to homosexuality.
- It's estimated that 25% of the population in the United States is homosexual.
More Interesting Reading
- Timeline of LGBT history - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
- Introvert or Extrovert: Who are You?
How do you feel your personality rates between needing your solitude and enjoying a social life? Let's look at the different characteristics of the introvert personality and the extrovert personality to see where YOU fall on the scale.
- What is Your Personality Type? Type A, B C or D?
When it comes to human beings and their personalities there are a lot of key factors that come into play. A major factor in getting to know one's self is to know his or her distinct personality type. Start by taking the quiz and then read your person
- First homosexual caveman found - Telegraph
Archaeologists have unearthed the 5,000-year-old remains of what they believe may have been the world's oldest known gay caveman.