Name the heterosexual

Among the following brief vignettes, choose the person you think identifies as heterosexual. If you are of the reparative school, you can guess who you think is a “heterosexual with a homosexual problem.” Or you can say who you think might experience same-sex attraction, whatever the person’s label. Guess by leaving a comment. Assume no child abuse, mental illness, or substance abuse unless specified.

James cannot remember ever hearing his father saying “I love you.” His mother had three children by three different fathers, James being the oldest brother of two younger sisters. James’s father traveled frequently on business and did not attend any of James school activities. James’ mother was an unhappy woman who frequently criticized James and the men who were fathers of her children. James became his mother’s main source of emotional support through high school. He did not excel in school but rather worked many jobs to help for his sisters and mother. James had a hard time breaking away from home and lives now just a few miles from his mother.

Dallas was the oldest of two boys growing up in an urban area. His father was a mechanic who came home every day from the shop in time to have supper with his family. The family attended church regularly and was active in the local sports programs. Dallas enjoyed sports but was a better student than an athlete, earning entrance into a selective private college. His parents never divorced but they did not seem emotionally or physically close. Dallas still has notes from his father telling him how much Dallas is loved. Dallas has expressed a desire to enter the pastorate.

John is a pastor’s son, the youngest of two boys and an older sister. John moved a lot with his family due to frequent pastoral changes. John was a good student and athlete. He played linebacker for the high school football team and was popular in school. He calls his dad “my hero” because he is so bold in defense of his faith. Furthermore his dad was his chosen accountability partner as he entered college. John’s mother is a real estate agent part-time and busy pastor’s wife. John remembered fighting a lot with his older sister because she was rebellious in high school. John’s brother is more bookish but John describes him as a good friend.

Gareth was the youngest of four boys. As a child he felt different from others, both in his childhood play and his interests. A shy, studious and unathletic boy, he was teased quite a bit by his male peers and lived a fairly isolated childhood. Gareth’s brothers were much older, not kind and so did not play or interact with him. His father traveled frequently as a physician and businessman. Gareth’s mother was very strict religiously and did not allow card playing, dancing or the wearing of bright colors.

13 thoughts on “Name the heterosexual”

  1. Sorry for going off topic on your blog Warren…

    Ariel – that is such an interesting article by Peter Tatchell!!! Personally, having had a read around, I think there’s evidence for a biological component to sexual orientation – but not a simple genetic link.

    Whichever way – his discussion around the social consequences of the genetic approach are interesting. I guess what the Kinsey institute has done is highlight how much diversity there is in sexual desires and experiences. Personally, I think the homo/hetero distinction is a bit old. There’s so much more diversity within human sexuality – what we are attracted to, in who, where and when, what we find sexually arousing in what situations (and perhaps terrifying or repugnant in others). Its all very fascinating. But I suspect we won’t be able to explore that as a community until people really truly get beyond these two categories (homo, hetero, with bisexual somewhere in the middle).

    I will have a think and maybe write something on my blog. Thanks for highlighting it!


    PS. Warren – you can’t tell. There is no evidence for any associations between sexual orientation and early life experiences ;). What do I win?

  2. Hummmm. There are so many ways to ponder this on. My first thought was James. But then….Gareth? I wonder if this is just to get everyone thinking….is it all of them, is it none of them? When will you tell us?

  3. This reminds me of the Monty Python sketch “Spot the Loony,” except more exploitive.

    Maybe instead we could guess which one is the negro?

  4. James might be bisexual because his reparative drive seems to be both for his mother and his father, while Gareth is definately homosexual due to his poor socialization to the world of guys and a poor self image.

  5. Warren, I have no idea.

    Those histories tell me nothing about who they may be sexually attracted to.

    If we had more about the way they described those histories I may, however, be able to guess who’s been ex-gayed…

    And on that, I’d pick James and Gareth as the most vulnerable.

  6. This is off topic, Warren, but I’m interested in what you think of this article written by Peter Tatchell, a world famous gay activist:

    Here is a gay activist who actually argues against the theory of genetic causation for sexual orientation! He actually states that early childhood experiences and social values, in addition to having a genetic predisposition (different from CAUSATION) may lead one to become homosexual at a young age, and thus mistakenly believe that they were gay from the day they were born.

    Please read it, and maybe write a review of it?


  7. Apparently the armor was not terribly effective given the situation with the men in her life.

    Impulsive me; I posted a question without thinking a bit about prizes.

  8. I vote for John to be the heterosexual. He seems to have had the best upbringing, however that doesn’t mean anything does it.

    James could also be the heterosexual, even though he’s emotionally enmeshed with his mother.

    Dallas seems like he could also be heterosexual…

    Come to think of it they all could be heterosexual, because they are! No one is gay 🙂

    This was a trick wasn’t it?

  9. Not sure where you’re going with this one Warren? I can certainly point to two who are more likely to exhibit same-sex attraction.

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