.comment-link {margin-left:.6em;}

Saturday, August 27, 2005

 

2005 article by Daryl Bem

Found this article recently by Daryl Bem. Not sure I agree with every point (I am not finished thinking about it) but this article may give some insight into the experience of some ex-gay men who report the experience of being attracted to their wives with some remaining same sex attraction. I think it addresses some of the discussion on this blog.

Comments:
Interesting article.

Regarding the same sex attracted men who are only attracted to their wives: Nicolosi mentions this phenomenon with respect to his patients who have moved on to successful heterosexual adaptations (notice I didn't say "orientation"). Such successful patients are only sexually/emotionally attracted to their wives. Also, they've found a way to manage their SSA so that it does not compromise their heterosexual adaptation.

It would appear that therapy helped these men fall in love with people who fell outside of their general gender preference. Furthermore, it seems that therapy allows them to sublimate their general preferences, so that they can live heterosexually, and without any significant intrapsychic conflicts. Of course, this is not possible for all gay people.

Yet there seems to be a problem with labeling. Many of these successful men would say that they are heterosexual: that is not strictly true. Some form of bisexual would be the more accurate description.

Of course, this occurs in the real world outside of reparative therapy circles. In fact, around where I live, one well known leader in the gay community recently got married to a lesbian, and they are happy. As for labels...lets just say that they don't particularly care anymore. It would be incorrect to say that their orientation shifted. Rather, it would appear that, like Nicolosi's ex-gays, they fell in love with a person who fell outside their general preference, yet in this case, it was accidental and not therapeutically premeditated.


Ricky
 
Sure, it happens both ways (spontaneously and via intentional effort).
 
Sure, it happens both ways(spontaneously and via intentional effort).

We need to be sure we are clear about what we mean as change. I like to look at these matters not in terms of changing "orientation" (just what is A sexual orientation anyways?), but rather in terms of changing one's way of conducting one's life.

Though this may sound behavioristic, ultimately it is a more pragmatic approach, particularly for a man who is aroused by the same gender and would prefer to NOT organize his life around his attractions. The questions he ought to ask himself is: "what are my desires, what are my options?" Suppose he finds that he does experience a degree of attraction to the opposite sex. Moreover, he finds that, with a bit of therapy, he's able to live comfortably in accordance with his heterosexual attractions as opposed to his homosexual attractions, then I believe he has a way out.
 
RE: Ricky

Then wouldn't it be fair to say tha the individual has a distorted view on sexual orientation? isnt it a repeating pattern to see that those who have same sex attractions, think they have to orientate their whole life around some fictional stereotype, perpertrated by the media?

I'd say that the issue isn't same sex attraction, but the need for someone to give the lad a giant boot up the ass, and a damn good heart to heart conversation - something their mother and father should have done ALONG time ago.
 
isnt it a repeating pattern to see that those who have same sex attractions, think they have to orientate their whole life around some fictional stereotype, perpertrated by the media?

This is somewhat of an intolerant stereotype. True, some buy into the stereotype, but there are many who simply found that man on man relationships don't work out (or don't last) and want something new.
 
isnt it a repeating pattern to see that those who have same sex attractions, think they have to orientate their whole life around some fictional stereotype, perpertrated by the media?

This is somewhat of an intolerant stereotype itself. True, many buy into what the media says, but there are many who simply found that man on man relationships don't work out (or don't last) and want something new.
 
This is somewhat of an intolerant stereotype. True, some buy into the stereotype, but there are many who simply found that man on man relationships don't work out (or don't last) and want something new.

Do they realise that they don't actually HAVE TO have a sexual relationship?

If their relationships are failing, isn't it more a case of the relationship failing rather than the orientation that is failing; it is the equivilant of getting into a car accident then saying, "heterosexuality caused this car accident, I should reorientat myself to being gay!".

Relationships failing has nothing to do with being gay, and everything to do with being human; with one person wanting something out of the relationship that the other can't provide; warped expectations by one person over what a relationship actually entails.

To say that it doesn't happen in the 'straight world' is simplistic at best.
 
Kaiwai,

Maybe a man happens to not do well with other men, no matter how hard he tries. If he has sufficient heterosexual attractions and would like to explore that option, please do, by all means. It's not our place to ridicule or to throw a tantrum
 
RE: ricky

The isn't then the fact they have no homosexual orientation, they simply perform homosexual acts as it is a great turn on, because they're doing something 'taboo' and 'naughty' - but when push comes to shove, they can't actually form a relationship because their orientation is actually heterosexual - thus, they don't have the 'deep' subconscience desires of wanting to form long term relationships.

What also gets my goat is the use of 'ex-gay' - you're now acting straight, so call yourself heterosexual; should I go around saying I'm ex-heterosexual, form a political movement to ban heterosexual marriage and have regular rallies decrying the 'perverse nature of the heterosexual lifestyle'? because all it seems to me is the ex-gay movement trying to justify their distorted views of sexuality by bashing another group in the process.
 
The isn't then the fact they have no homosexual orientation, they simply perform homosexual acts as it is a great turn on, because they're doing something 'taboo' and 'naughty' - but when push comes to shove, they can't actually form a relationship because their orientation is actually heterosexual - thus, they don't have the 'deep' subconscience desires of wanting to form long term relationships.

I'm not sure about this. If a guy who enjoys giving fellating the penis of another man were to say to me: "Ricky, I'm heterosexual," I'd probably look at him, laugh till I cough up my spleen, and walk off.

Where do you draw the line?

So heterosexuals who enjoy having sex with women but cannot form a relationship with them are not really heterosexual, but secretly homosexual?

Ricky

Ricky
 
RE: Ricky

Well, it falls into two areas;

They're either crappy at relationships and thus need to acquire the skills

OR

They're actually homosexual/heterosexual but choose to act heterosexual/homosexual
 
They're actually homosexual/heterosexual but choose to act heterosexual/homosexual

I personally couldn't imagine a purely heterosexual person choosing to act homosexual under normal circumstances. There just isn't any reason to (pretend I'm gay to avoid discrimination)?
 
I personally couldn't imagine a purely heterosexual person choosing to act homosexual under normal circumstances. There just isn't any reason to (pretend I'm gay to avoid discrimination)?

I'm making an assumption that the person is incredibly horney/arroused, does it simply to satisfy sexual release and it is a great turn on because they're doing something that is perceived as taboo.

Combine all the above, with a couple of same sex fantasies, and you get a very confused guy who thinks he is a gay, but isn't.
 
Kaiwai - IMO, circular reasoning. You start with the assumption that being gay is something essential that you are and then any situation that comes along is explained via that assumption. Voila, you end up where you started.
 
I'm making an assumption that the person is incredibly horney/arroused, does it simply to satisfy sexual release and it is a great turn on because they're doing something that is perceived as taboo.

Combine all the above, with a couple of same sex fantasies, and you get a very confused guy who thinks he is a gay, but isn't.


Then what, pray tell, would make somebody "truly gay?" So, somebody who likes to have sex with other men, because he enjoys the taboo, is not truly gay, even when he gets thrills that conventional (non-taboo) sex with women couldn't supply? Not even when he actively seeks out sex with men on a regular basis?

Why does an enjoyment (even if it is a great "turn on") of a taboo render inauthentic a person's claim to being gay? What kind of enjoyment would a person have to have in order to be gay?

So, again, what is a "gay person," anyways? What is the criteria for being gay?

I agree with Warren: It is clear that you see sexual orientation as some essential, metaphysical component of being. That's why, to you, a man may seek out sex with other men frequently, and not be "truly" gay, whereas another man who is actively having sex with women may still "truly" be gay.

Again, what is the criteria? There is a clear cut criteria for whether someone has blue eyes. We look, and see if they are blue. There is a fairly clear cut criteria for whether or not a person is male or female. What about for being gay?

The difficulty is that ultimately, whatever definition you formulate will ultimately be YOUR definition alone. It is a fact that sexual identity and orientation means different things to different people. So a guy who has sex with men because the taboo of doing something "wrong" turns him on like no other. To him, that is what being gay is about. Consequently, he starts to call himself gay. Would you be so bold as to accuse him of mislabeling?

Ricky
 
RE: Throckmorton

Being gay is but one aspect of my existance; it isn't the sole anchor of my life; I don't walk around saying, "Hi, I'm gay male Matthew" - I am Matthew first, wine enthuiast second, and somewhere down the list between blogger and choc-a-holic, comes my sexual orientation - yes, it is one component, like I said, but it isn't the over all driving force of my life - it isn't my 'zen' as you could say.

RE: Ricky

I don't know about other gay males, but sex is only *ONE* component of a relationship; just as for a straight male, sex is only *ONE* component of the relationship with a female.

I want a long term, stable, relationship with a male; and yes, sex is but one component with in the relationship.

A 'truely gay' individual will want 'all of the above' - not just wanting to have sex for the sake of having sex; if that is the case, they can screw anything and everyone simply to get an orgasm.

Now, if someone likes going around screwing other guys, then good for him, I certainly won't get in his way; infact, I might raise my rear and him him have a ride; but at the same time, lets not try to make out that some how, who someone has sex with defines their sexual orientation, because you know as well as I do that who one has sex with has much to do with sexual orientation as it does with availability of a possible partner, societal constructs and the particular fetish/vices of the individual.
 
A 'truely gay' individual will want 'all of the above'

I don't think relationships is a good criteria. There are a LOT of gay and straight individuals who love sex, but just aren't interested in any sort of relationship.

So then these so called "players" are not really gay or straight?
 
RE: Ricky said...

I don't think relationships is a good criteria. There are a LOT of gay and straight individuals who love sex, but just aren't interested in any sort of relationship.

So then these so called "players" are not really gay or straight?


True, but when I said, "want a relation" it doesn't automatically mean, "must have a relationship" - there are those who might want a relationship LATER but quite happy to simply have a f*ck buddy and leave it at that or simply find that they haven't found someone that is suitable.

They haven't blocked out the idea of a relationship, but at the same time, they're not going to lose any sleep about not having a partner.

At the end of the day, however, it doesn't matter who someone has sex with, to be quite honest; as long as they're two conscenting age adults who are happy to have sex with each other, it isn't the place for the state, church or anyone else to throw their 5 cents worth into the debate.
 
Post a Comment

Links to this post:

Create a Link



<< Home

This page is powered by Blogger. Isn't yours?