My sexuality is disabled. I was born disabled. So my whole life. All of my conditioning revolved around my being disabled, which meant that I was taught that my expectations should be to fall in unrequited love but never have any actual sexual urges. I was explicitly told to expect the people who were sexually attracted to me were perverted and if anyone did form love with me, which was highly unlikely, they were doing it because they were a saint. A marriage would be like one between God and a nun.
Nothing has changed so even though I know that’s bull shit I opt out of the argument of nature versus nurture, but last year was doing a lot of reading on gender studies and was surprised at what was becoming a mainstream theory.
The theory is that sexuality is a choice and social expectations are what we determine our choice on.
Until the last century sex among people of all genders wasn’t unusual. Traditional heterosexual marriage is more or less a business contract. As a woman you were supposed to have sex with your husband but women technically didn’t have any sexuality so what they did amongst themselves was just an extreme version of friendship, a type of friendship that people actually had high esteem for. Families would pass down romantic letters that women in their family had either received or sent two their female lovers and a lot are in museums now as artifacts. A lot of people considered it a type of poetry.
That being said, there was actually “gay marriage” for women at one point in America. It was called the Boston marriage because at the time Boston was the San Francisco of America. It was the equivalent of a common-law marriage, that’s when a couple has lived together and operated as a couple for so long that they are legally seen as a married couple. This used to be necessary because priests who could marry you would travel so sometimes he could take years to make it supposedly official.
Boston marriage was an oddity, it was seen as eccentric but socially accepted eccentric. One of the women in these marriages tended to socialize as a man so the relationships could operate as a heterosexual one. They were still considered women unlike some other cultures where that happens and they are considered a separate gender.
Actually, the woman who invented interior design as an industry, Elsie de Wolfe, was in one of these marriages because she and her wife had a lot of money and she had retired from her acting career so she didn’t have to work and got bored so would constantly redecorate their house and finally her wife was like “do it somewhere else and make them pay you” and she did! I don’t know why, but that always cracks me up.
As for guys, as long as they weren’t the one “receiving” it was pretty common but it was like masturbation, it’s something that you knew “all guys” did but didn’t talk about in polite company. Heterosexuality hadn’t been invented yet there have always been what we would refer to as a gay community and they were never socially accepted. Men will would call heteronormative considered them nothing but a cheap or free prostitute (or love the time the “gay” guy would buy a drink or something for a “straight” guy and if you accepted it you can get your dick sucked right at the bar)
just bros being bros
Of course it wasn’t and openly accepted thing but it’s a huge part of our history and culture that people have been trying to erase. And it’s not like if you put any of that in the correct context it wouldn’t be problematic. It was never good for anybody.
The theory says that sexual fluidity is the default sexuality and heterosexuals choose to be heterosexual. They choose to be heterosexual because they want a heteronormative lifestyle both as a living style preference and also for the privilege. Essentially that if we removed the social stigma of sexuality/sexual activity defining us it wouldn’t be a big deal or even have to be notable, or at least that’s what people are suggesting.
One example people use are the Hells Angels. I think people try to underplay how bad they were because they were essentially a white gang and of course white people don’t have gangs. They would kill anyone and rape women at their leisure and although women were a part of the community as part of the luggage it was an all men’s club. In the 70s when there was a lot of cultural shift a journalist whose name I can’t remember right now convinced a group of Hells Angels to let him be amongst them for a while and study their culture.
As far as I remember he didn’t witness any of the men having traditional sex as openly as they did with women but they would easily and openly share blow jobs and it was common for them to make out. When he asked why they do that, especially in public, they explained that they had a culture and society unto themselves and it made “normal” people uncomfortable so they would do it to freak them out but the guy doing the study noted that they would regularly kiss intimately when they were just amongst each other. He also noted that they considered kissing to be a necessary form of socializing in a way and when he refused to participate he was shunned for his offensive behavior.
That civil rights movement ended and because of the science and sociology of the time(s) sexualities like homosexuality/bisexuality/etc. became even more taboo because of internalized homophobia within the institutions. Right now there’s so much coverage on how teenagers don’t like labels or don’t consider themselves gay just for sleeping with someone of the same gender, it’s becoming more common and many of them don’t consider themselves bisexual either, it’s often another “bonding experience” between guys in male only environments but now everyone is reporting on these things becoming a social norm and more and more common in high schools. Meaning the species is getting gayer.
The theory isn’t necessarily suggesting that everyone is gay or that a bunch of people are closeted. The theory suggests that as a species we really don’t care and that sexuality really is a social construct that we can see direct relation to the social climate.
All that being said, maybe there aren’t “exceptions” maybe we have types of things we are attracted to and gender is just an aesthetic quality, like unto the preference of tall and/or thin bodies, etc.
Either way, your sexual and romantic history do not define you. If a gay man dies a virgin he is still a gay man if that’s what he identifies as. Sexualities are just social labels used to both oppress but also to categorize people in a very common way, it just always leads to bigotry which is also natural in our species but so are your tonsils but we’ll rip them right out because we don’t need them anymore.
We immediately categorize someone when we see them and unconsciously we give them lots of labels like liberal or conservative, rich or poor, white or brown and something you might assume could actually be the complete opposite of who or what that person is.
Falling for someone based on who they are and not what they are is very natural and sometimes it won’t fit within the labels you give yourself and that’s okay. You can keep the same identity because these labels tend to just be used to categorize people so if you want to stay in your category you can and it’s understandable that you would want to because your category equals your community.
We don’t need sexuality or gender, we just need consent.