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Going straight? [May. 12th, 2009|12:46 am]
The Queer by Choice Community

queerchoice

[emmasj]
Hey guys, me again--I got great answers for my last question, but now I have another one. Some people say that it isn't possible to choose to go straight again: Why not? What makes that different?

And for fun, a hypothetical situation that goes with my question: Let's say there's a community where homosexuality is the norm. Would it be possible for some people to chose to be heterosexual, then? And if so, would they be able to go back to being gay?

And how many of you think that choosing heterosexuality is a boring choice? If so, is that compared to homosexuality, or just queerness in general?

Just wondering! Thanks so much for your time and patience. =D
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[User Picture]From: queerbychoice
2009-05-12 07:06 am (UTC)
"Some people say that it isn't possible to choose to go straight again: Why not? What makes that different?"

I would not claim that it's impossible for anyone ever to choose to turn straight again. I think that if a person has a good reason to believe that love or sex or both will be more enjoyable for them with a member of the opposite sex than it could ever be with any member of the same sex, that belief could plausibly make members of the same sex start seeming significantly less attractive.

I do think it's impossible under certain circumstances to turn straight again. I believe that if a person's personal experience has given them good reason to believe that love or sex or both will be as enjoyable or more enjoyable for them with a member of the same sex, then no amount of believing it's a sin for them to enjoy it, or believing that they will be punished with discrimination and harassment for enjoying it, will make it possible for them to choose to be straight. I believe that feelings arise directly from beliefs: your feelings of attraction (either physical or romantic) will change if and only if your intellectual beliefs about what being with someone (either physically or romantically) will be like. And I don't believe you can just randomly choose to change your intellectual beliefs without actual supporting evidence to persuade you that your new beliefs are correct. I think that being able to randomly choose to believe things that are contrary to the evidence you have access to is pretty much the definition of being insane.

"Let's say there's a community where homosexuality is the norm. Would it be possible for some people to chose to be heterosexual, then? And if so, would they be able to go back to being gay?"

I think that if homosexuality were so much the norm that people were terrified of choosing heterosexuality and feared it would destroy their family relationships and so on, then in that society, more people would find it impossible to choose to be gay, because they would want it too desperately for reasons that would have more to do with fear of prejudice than with any actual belief that sex or love with a member of the same sex would really be enjoyable for them.

"And how many of you think that choosing heterosexuality is a boring choice?"

That wouldn't be my choice of words exactly, because I wasn't motivated to choose to be queer for the sake of making my life "interesting"; I would have really preferred to keep my life "boring," but I felt that it would be an act of immoral cowardice to remain mentally closed off to feeling same-sex attraction after I had begun to suspect that I was capable of learning to feel it and that there was no moral reason in the world why I shouldn't love someone of the same-sex back if someone of the same sex happened to love me.

All that said - yes, I suppose I do think that choosing heterosexuality would have been a boring choice - compared to both heterosexuality and bisexuality. That had nothing to do with causing me to choose queerness instead, though.

Also see my FAQ page that addresses some of this same topic.
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