Wednesday, February 14, 2018

Pre-adolescent indicators of post-adolescent homosexuality? Evidence, anyone?

This is from Focus on the Family

As a parent, you should be aware that there are certain signs of pre-homosexuality that are fairly easy to recognize. They usually show up early in a child's life, and they generally fall under the heading of what might be called "cross-gender behavior." There are five markers to watch for in determining whether a boy or girl is a likely candidate for "gender identity disorder:"
  • A recurring desire to be, or an insistence that he or she is, the opposite sex.
  • Penchant for cross-dressing.
  • A strong and persistent preference for cross-sexual roles in make-believe play, or persistent fantasies of being the other sex.
  • An intense desire to participate in stereotypical games and pastimes of the other sex.
  • A strong preference for playmates of the opposite sex.

I've never seen any good evidence for this sort of thing. Has anyone? 

26 comments:

John Moore said...

You don't start being homosexual at puberty, do you? What's this about "pre-homosexuality"? Maybe they just think of homosexuality in terms of desires and actions, but it's more than that. Pre-teens certainly have some sense of their gender identity, and many pre-teens must also be somewhat confused about the gender identity that their parents and peers try to put on them.

One Brow said...

As you might expect from Focus on the Family, they can't even tell the difference between homosexuality and transsexualism. That alone tells you the level of confidence you can have in this list.

If we weren't so determined to limit people based on labels and categories that just don't fit some people, it wouldn't be an issue at all.

Starhopper said...

It all comes down to chromosomes. If you're an XX, you're female. If you're XY, you're male. End of story, case closed, nothing more to see here, move along.

There. That was easy!

William said...

The article is just saying what the standard texts like the DSM manual say about gender identity disorder. There is some fuzziness in the article between how it refers to the identity disorder and how it might be used to refer to homosexual orientation of sex drive-- the two are not the same in most cases.

There is a huge literature on prior childhood abuse and both adult homosexuality and adult gender identity problems. Childhood abuse has a much stringer association with homosexual preference than any biological marker. There is some controversy about whether persons with future homosexual orientation are somehow more targeted for abuse, but I suspect that is not as common as persons who change their sexual preference because of emotional scarring due to childhood events over which they had no real influence.

Just an educated opinion.

Starhopper said...

Hmm... I recall back during the Vietnam War, when (with a lottery number of 104) I had every risk of being drafted, I fervently wished that I had been born female. It struck me as the height of injustice that they were exempt from the possibility of being forced unwillingly into a demonstrably stupid war by accident of birth.

But being the illogical person that I am, I signed up anyways (Army). Go figure.

And they sent me to Germany, not to Nam. Dodged that (literal) bullet.

bmiller said...

@William,

I had heard the link you mentioned a long time ago, but I haven't seen it mentioned much recently. Do you have any links to recent, reliable research?

One Brow said...

It all comes down to chromosomes. If you're an XX, you're female. If you're XY, you're male. End of story, case closed, nothing more to see here, move along.

There. That was easy!


You seem well-informed enough that I am hoping that was a jest.

One Brow said...

Childhood abuse has a much stringer association with homosexual preference than any biological marker. There is some controversy about whether persons with future homosexual orientation are somehow more targeted for abuse, but I suspect that is not as common as persons who change their sexual preference because of emotional scarring due to childhood events over which they had no real influence.

Do you have evidence to back your suspicion? A causal pathway?

Starhopper said...

No jest intended. I was trying to express my views as succinctly and concisely as possible.

One Brow said...

So, people with XY genotype, but (say from androgen insensitivity syndrome) are born with female genitalia and raised as girls their whole life, are really boys? Should they receive sex change operations?

How about an XXY genotype?

This is just scratching the surface. Looking into the details, the relationship between your genes and your sex is complicated.

Starhopper said...

Not to me.

William said...

bmiller,

PubMed can be your friend:
https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/15982145

For related articles, you can use the references, or the Similar Articles box on the right side of the page.

William said...

One Brow,

I don't know of any scientifically validated theory of why there is such an association. There is no doubt of a connection of some type though.

bmiller said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
bmiller said...

Thanks William.

I believe this is the paper without the pay restriction.

One Brow said...

Starhopper,

What's your simple methodology for cases like these?

People with XY genotype, but (say from androgen insensitivity syndrome) are born with female genitalia and raised as girls their whole life, are really boys? Should they receive sex change operations?

How about an XXY genotype?

One Brow said...

William,

As you put it, "There is some controversy about whether persons with future homosexual orientation are somehow more targeted for abuse...". There is no question that children with homosexual orientations are targeted for abuse (all you have to do is read their stories), but I suppose it is controversial in the sense that it is obviously wrong.

So, we have an easily visible, causal connection that homosexuality leads to greater likelihood of being abused, and no discernible causal connection that being abused leads to homosexuality. The former seems like an easy choice to me, but I supposed if you have a vested interested, not related to the evidence, to choose the latter, nothing can stop you.

William said...

One Brow,

You are making the assumption that younger children are already homosexual. That assumption is not necessary.


Legion of Logic said...

One Brow: "People with XY genotype, but (say from androgen insensitivity syndrome) are born with female genitalia and raised as girls their whole life, are really boys? Should they receive sex change operations?"


I would disagree with Starhopper's assertion that a chromosome test alone would be sufficient, but there is something that is, and it is a universal throughout the animal kingdom - the production of sperm or eggs, i.e. the sex organs. Males produce sperm, females produce eggs.

In the case of your cited disorder, which at worst-case scenario represents 0.00005 percent of the population, we have males and females with a genetic problem that caused their sex organs to develop improperly. In the place of ovaries such a male has testicles but is infertile. In both cases - AIS and infertility - both are recognized disorders because the scientific and medical community establishes that something went wrong, thus they do not define what is "normal". Males produce sperm (with testicles in humans), females produce eggs (with ovaries in humans).

Not all species have XX or XY chromosomes. Not all have the same organs. But in all of biology, a male produces sperm and a female produces eggs. In humans, any deviation from that is a problem, not a redefinition. There is no other species that we have to get a specimen's "identity" in order to tell if it's a male or a female (barring ethical barriers regarding intrustive examination, of course), thus I "suspect" that we don't have to in humans, either.

One Brow said...

William,

I agree it's not necessary. That's why if you have a vested interest in denying it, it's straight-forward to do so. Also, I would never claim as complicated a phenomnon as homosexuality only has one cause and one method of appearing.

Legion of Logic,

But in all of biology, a male produces sperm and a female produces eggs. In humans, any deviation from that is a problem, not a redefinition.

Those that produce neither sperm nor eggs are not male and not female? Or, are they still categorized as such, despite the "problem"? If so, on what basis?

William said...

One Brow,

I agree it's all quite multifactorial with regard to nature and nurture, though I think it's much more nurture related.

One of the ironies with discussions of homosexual behavior as contrasted with transsexual behavior is the arguments used to object and justify one tend to sit opposite on the nature/nurture spectrum from the arguments used to attack/justify the other.

One Brow said...

William,

I can see that for those who view gender as a biological state, it might seem the arguments are in opposition. For those who gender as a psychological state, there is little opposition in the line of arguments.

William said...

No one practically speaking sees gender as just a psychological state: otherwise why the hormone or surgical treatments in gender dysphoria? They are biological maneuvers. And, of course, there is definitely a social aspect to gender--why else have the sex put on our IDs?

It is mainly a matter of whether one thinks the biology or the psychology should have priority in defining gender. And that in turn is influenced by a particular brand of feminist ideology.

One Brow said...

No one practically speaking sees gender as just a psychological state: otherwise why the hormone or surgical treatments in gender dysphoria?

To have the body match what is psychological gender. What other reason would there be?

It is mainly a matter of whether one thinks the biology or the psychology should have priority in defining gender.

Since gender roles and expectations are socially constructed, that answer seems obvious.

William said...

"Since gender roles and expectations are socially constructed"

So is pregnancy. So is life. But that is not all they are. So also with gender.

This "socially constructed" thing is a question begging assumption as you use it. Those using this argument are relying on an equivocation on the extent to which gender is social or psychological rather than biological. They make it cover more when they want to give the social priority and cover less when they want to justify altering the biology or the physical aspects of such a role.

If all that mattered was psychology and the social role, making the body match would be pointless and not needed.


One Brow said...

So is pregnancy. So is life. But that is not all they are. So also with gender.

Pregnancy is a physical phenomenon, gender roles are not (I'm not sure if you meant gender roles, physical sex, or something else there).

Those using this argument are relying on an equivocation on the extent to which gender is social or psychological rather than biological.

What do you mean by gender? Many people use sex for the physical characteristics, and gender for the social.

If all that mattered was psychology and the social role, making the body match would be pointless and not needed.

If gender is a social role, then it requires people to treat you as female, and looking female can help with that.