The idea that gay parents are more likely to have gay children has long been thought to be a myth among sexual orientation researchers. For example, a review of the literature published in 1999 emphatically stated that “the incidence of homosexuality is no higher if one is raised by a gay or lesbian parent, than if one is raised by a heterosexual parent.” However, recent research challenges this conclusion.Read More
I spend a lot of time reading scientific journal articles as part of my job and, every now and then, I come across a paper that makes me say “WTF?” Case in point: in doing background research for a blog post about the effects of vasectomies on men’s sex lives a few weeks back, I stumbled onto a paper titled “Homosexual Behavior After Vasectomy.” It turned out to be a case report from 1980 about a man whose sexual orientation reportedly changed after he underwent a vasectomy.
Yep—you read that right. A vasectomy supposedly made him gay.Read More
A lot of people seem to believe that homosexuality is contagious--that it can spread from one person to the next through simple social contact. For example, Pat Robertson of the Christian Broadcasting Network recently warned parents that they should be cautious about inviting gays and lesbians into their homes because, if they do, their children will probably grow up to be gay. Similarly, the leader of a group that calls itself the Islamic People Forum recently described homosexuality as a "disease" that is "contagious and harmful to our children."
Is there any reason to believe that these claims about homosexuality being contagious are actually true, though? Can homosexuality really be transmitted through social contact? According to a recent study published in the Archives of Sexual Behavior, there doesn't seem to be anything to the idea that you can "catch the gay" from others.Read More
Despite all of the social progress made by sexual minorities in recent years, numerous stereotypes and misconceptions about sexual orientation persist. Below, I correct ten of the most common false beliefs and provide links to more detailed scientific information debunking them.
1.) Homosexuality is contagious through social contact. Research has failed to find support for the notion that same sex attraction is socially transmitted. For example, a recent, large-scale study found that same-sex attraction does not spread within adolescent peer groups. Likewise, other research has found that gay parents are no more likely to raise gay children than their heterosexual counterparts.Read More
Results from a new national survey reveal stark generational differences in sexual identity, attraction, and behavior in the United States today. Specifically, millennial men and women appear to be almost twice as likely to adopt a gay, lesbian, or bisexual identity compared to persons from Generation X. Millennials also reported somewhat higher levels of same-sex attraction and behavior.Read More
If I were to tell you that lesbian, gay, and bisexual (LGB) persons are often excluded from scientific studies of romantic relationships, I doubt you would be surprised. However, the extremely high frequency with which this actually happens just might. Believe it or not, a new research review reveals that nearly 9 out of 10 relationship studies exclude sexual minority couples and, in an even bigger surprise, this trend doesn’t appear to be changing.Read More
The United States has made great strides toward equality for lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender (LGBT) Americans over the past 15 years. For example, same-sex marriage is now legal nationwide, more states have adopted anti-discrimination laws protecting LGBT persons, and the federal hate crimes statute has been expanded to cover sexual and gender minorities. But what are things like for LGBT persons in other parts of the world?Read More
Every Friday on the blog, I answer people’s questions about sex, love, and relationships. This week’s question comes from a reader who wanted to know whether a guy can still be straight if he watches gay porn and fantasizes about being with other men.
If a boyfriend (of a female, so a "straight guy") appears to prefer gay male porn, gets incredibly turned on by it and fantasizes about anal sex (both giving and receiving) and oral sex (both giving and receiving) with a guy, is he really straight or is this a sign of something he's not sharing?Read More