Sunday, July 3, 2011

Genetic? Maybe, but I don't think so....

While I believe there is certainly a genetic aspect to homosexuality; I believe I don't need to go there to explain my deep yearning for male intimacy.

There is no question that a prerequisite for an individual to grow up with a sound feeling of self and a healthy emotional balance, their childhood home had to feel safe. A home for a child needs to be a place that they can fall back on for stability even when it seems like the rest of the world might be falling apart.

Of course for a home to feel safe there typically has to be a positive relationship between the parents and a general feeling of calm and predictability in day to day life. Love and encouragement on a proactive scale wouldn't hurt either but might not be absolutely necessary.

I for the most part did not enjoy any of the above feelings of safety. I grew up in New York City with second generation holocaust survivors as parents. I dont judge them becauae they had to live with parents who woke up screaming in middle of the night from the nightmares of their childhood.

My father was a successful business man who gave a ridiculous amount to tzedaka. He was into the New York political scene. Rabbi's fawned on him. He was cool. Good looking and charismatic.If I had a dime for every person who told me what a wonderful guy he is I would be rich. How I yearned for his love. I believe he loved me dearly but didn't always have the means to express it. I needed him to touch me gently and to tell me that he was there for me. He sent me to a yeshivish/heimish boro park elementary school. If you think there was a male role model I was able to count on for a healthy male child adult relationship you would be quite wrong. (That might be for another post.)

My mother had to hold up the fort on her own. She unfortunately wasn't emotionally strong enough to raise all of us. Without going into details, she lived a difficult and complicated life that played out in my relationship with her. I could truly write up a book on my upbringing and the difficulty it was.

Yes, this is the gay cliche of absent father & dominating mother. What could I say? I grew up yearning desperately for the love of a man while being turned off by the instability of the primary female in my life.Where did that leave me? You guessed it.When puberty set in, that yearning turned into something more sexual and physical in nature. Unsatisfied, it just raged on further.

As I started this post, I can never say for certain that elements of my gay desires are not genetic. I have no question though that my life experiences can explain my homosexuality as a learned behavior or at a minimum it has fanned that genetic flame in a very powerful way.

Ultimately, when I stand here today it makes absolutely no difference to me how I got here. I can't undo genetics, nor can I undo my life experiences.


  1. first of all great blog! i love it,

    i understand your reasoning in this post, personally i believe genetics plays a very large role in being gay, but i know that is not true by everyone, but like you said it doesnt really matter how you get there, its where you are right now, looing forward to your posts!

  2. Thank you Martin. I am sure you understand that I wasnt discounting at all the theory of genetics and its potential of playing a big role in ones homosexuality. I was only speaking to my personal experience.

    Thank you as well for the kind words about the blog.

  3. I feel your pain... I am married and in the same situation...
    I believe that my homosexual behaviour is enviormental and not genetic. This is not saying that I have a choice about my sexual orientation or an ability to change my sexual orientation. I just don't believe it is genetic.

  4. i just found your blog, and I'm also in the same situation. I guess I see where you are coming from. My family was much the same as yours. My father left when I was a baby, and my mother raised me herself. I don't have any siblings, so my mother is even closer to me that you can imagine. We only had each other for many years of our lives.

    There's one huge difference, though.
    I'm a woman. So in theory I would want to get away from females and find what I need in a man. Not so.

    For me, I do believe it's either genetic or hormonal. Whether it's genetic or not (encoded in genes, able to be inherited), I am certain I was born this way. My earliest memories include being told to stop sitting like a farm boy (lol), showing complete disinterest to the dolls I was being coaxed to play with, screaming and crying until I had my hair cut short and kissing a girl in my kindergarten class on the lips. With tongue.

    In any case, I really feel for you. :( I'm married as well, have kids, and it's a mess. Have you joined groups like Eshel and JQY? I have joined some groups and have received amazing support. I'm glad to find some blogs, and I have started one as well. I think it's a great venue to work things out for yourself.