January 19, 2014

NYT, 1986: Boyhood Effeminacy and Later Homosexuality

Here is a very interesting New York Times article from over 27 years ago on a classic long-term study. I'm not aware of this type of study ever being done again. 

The article is quite good on the complexities of nature and nurture, of glasses that are part full and part empty. The NYT science section remains quite strong (despite the complaints of psychometricians who ranked the overall institution far behind my blog in accuracy), but there are simply so many more minefields these days that it's hard to imagine reading a single article this dense with information and analysis without long stretches of moralizing filler. In other words, you can still learn a lot reading the NYT, but you now have to home in on the nuggets of intelligence deposited here and there amongst the rubble and dust.
BOYHOOD EFFEMINACY AND LATER HOMOSEXUALITY 
By JANE E. BRODY 
Published: December 16, 1986

MOST young boys who persistently act like girls grow up to be homosexuals or bisexuals, a 15-year study of ''sissy boys'' has shown. According to the findings, neither therapy designed to discourage the extremely feminine behavior nor ideal child rearing could guarantee that the boys would develop as heterosexuals, although parental discouragement of the boys' girlish behavior tended to result in a more heterosexual orientation. 
Three-fourths of 44 extremely feminine boys followed from early childhood to adolescence or young adulthood matured as homosexuals or bisexuals, as against only one bisexual among a comparison group of more typically masculine boys. 
In many cases parents either overtly or subtly encouraged the feminine behavior. But when parents actively discouraged it and took other steps to enhance a male self-concept, homosexual tendencies of the feminine boys were lessened, although not necessarily reversed. Neither did professional counseling divert a tendency toward homosexuality, although it resulted in more conventional masculine behavior and enhanced the boys' social and pyschological adjustment and comfort with being male. 
The study was conducted by Dr. Richard Green, a noted sex researcher who is professor of psychiatry at the University of California, Los Angeles and director of its Program in Psychiatry, Law and Human Sexuality. Details of the findings and implications are described in Dr. Green's new book, ''The 'Sissy Boy Syndrome' and the Development of Homosexuality,'' to be published in February by Yale University Press. 
Although the study examined extreme cases of boyhood effeminacy, Dr. Green believes the findings may have relevance to lesser degrees of feminine behavior in boys. Such boys, who may, for example, be athletically inept or prefer music to cars and trucks, often have difficulty making friends with other boys and identifying with typically male activities. Dr. Green suggested that to help the boys think of themselves as male, parents might assist them in finding boy friends who are similarly unaggressive and that the fathers might share in activities the boys enjoy, such as going to the zoo or a concert, rather than insist on taking the boys to athletic events. Counseling to guide such parents and enhance the child's masculine self-image may also be helpful, Dr. Green said. 
The study did not examine the development of homosexuality in boys whose childhoods are typically masculine. About one-third of homosexual men recall such masculine boyhoods. Nor does the study suggest that all boys with the sissy-boy syndrome are destined for homosexuality. Indeed, one-fourth of the extremely feminine boys followed to maturity developed as heterosexuals. 
According to Dr. Green and other experts familiar with his study, the findings indicate that some children may have an inborn ''receptivity'' to environmental factors that encourage a homosexual orientation. Whether such a predisposition is genetic or the result of prenatal factors, or both, is not known. Recent research in animals suggests that prenatal hormonal influences can interfere with programming the brain of the male fetus and result in the birth of males that act like females. 
The study supports a recent Kinsey Institute survey of 1,500 adults that singled out ''gender nonconformity'' in childhood as the most important predictor of homosexuality. Dr. Alan Bell of Indiana University, a director of the Kinsey study, said he was pleased and not surprised that the findings of Dr. Green's prospective study corresponded with the retrospective Kinsey data. 
''The pendulum is swinging back to biology,'' Dr. Bell remarked. ''Apparently there is a very important physiological component that plays a big role in determining one's sexual identity.'' 
As have other recent investigations, including the Kinsey study, the new research challenges long-held psychoanalytic beliefs that dominant, overprotecting mothers and ineffectual fathers are primary ''causes'' of a son's homosexuality. 
Rather, the study suggests that some boys are born with an indifference to rough-and-tumble play and other typical boyhood interests and that this indifference alienates and isolates them from their male peers and often from their fathers as well. Dr. Green believes that such boys may grow up ''starved'' for male affection, which prompts them to seek love from men in adolescence and adulthood. To Dr. Bell, however, a sense of difference and social distance from males during childhood is what leads to the romantic and erotic attraction to other males. 
Dr. Richard Isay, a New York psychoanalyst whose practice is largely homosexual men, said: ''I would agree with Dr. Green. I too see no support for the notion that binding mothers produce homosexual sons, nor do I see any consistent pattern for absent fathers that I don't also see among heterosexual men in analysis.'' Dr. Isay, who is affiliated with Columbia Psychoanalytic Institute and New York-Cornell Medical School, suggested that the common depiction among homosexual men of an absent, distant father is in fact a defense against an underlying erotic attachment to their fathers.

Ah, good old Freudians ...
Dr. Green, who is now studying the development of tomboy girls, said the issue for girls who act like boys is very different. ''There are far fewer sissy boys than tomboy girls, but many more homosexual and transsexual men than women,'' he said.

I believe Green's study of tomboys eventually came up with the common sense finding that not all that many tomboy girls grow up to be lesbians, but a lot of lesbians were tomboys as girls. The number of models, actresses, and other glamor girls who tell interviewers they were tomboys as adolescents is noticeably high. My guess would be that long legs correlate with success in modeling, and long legs correlate with delayed puberty because girls typically stop getting taller around puberty.
Asked to comment on Dr. Green's findings, Dr. Judd Marmor, professor emeritus of psychiatry at the University of Southern California and the University of California at Los Angeles, said that they ''are another indication there is a biological element involved in the genesis of homosexuality, at least for those homosexuals with effeminate qualities.'' 
He added: ''Some children really feel different from earliest childhood; they are born without the aggressive masculinity other boys have. This is not something created by an overprotective mother or an absent or ineffectual father.'' 
Although the study involved a relatively small number of boys, Dr. Marmor, who is a past president of the American Psychiatric Association and an authority on homosexuality, called the research ''most important'' in what it revealed about the development of sexual orientation. ''Society tends to treat male homosexuals as if they had a choice about their sexual orientation, when in fact they have no more choice about how they develop than heterosexuals do,'' he said. ' 
An innate sissiness is ''not the answer to all homosexuality,'' Dr. Marmor said, ''but it is a factor that plays a role in a substantial number of male homosexuals.'' He added that homosexuality could also develop from a seriously distorted family environment but that ''it is much harder to develop that way, without a biological predisposition.'' 
Boys who participated in Dr. Green's study were first examined in early childhood, when their parents became concerned about the boys' persistent feminine behaviors and dislike of activities boys usually like. Many of the boys also repeatedly said they wanted to be girls. At the outset, Dr. Green thought he was examining the origins of male transsexuals -boys who grow up thinking they are girls trapped in male bodies and who may later seek sex-change surgery. 
However, only one of the feminine boys became a transsexual. 
In an interview, Dr. Green pointed out that the boys he studied were notably different from other children. While many, if not most, young children - boys as well as girls - occasionally dress up in their mothers' clothes, put on makeup or jewelry, play with dolls or assume the role of the opposite sex in fantasy play, the boys in Dr. Green's study did so almost exclusively. They spurned typical boy games, rough-housing and sports and instead would play with Barbie dolls for hours, frequently don female clothing and nearly always assume a female role when playing house. Many followed their mothers around the house, mimicking the mothers' activities. 
The boys and their parents were interviewed every few years, and some were seen several times a year in therapeutic counseling aimed at intercepting the boys' feminine tendencies and encouraging more ''gender-appropriate'' activities. 
Although Dr. Green found no evidence that the parents ''created'' feminine boys (many, in fact, had other sons who were normally masculine), certain parental attitudes and actions were correlated with a stronger homosexual orientation. 
One of the earliest influences was the prenatal desire on the part of either parent, and the father in particular, that the child be a girl. After the boy was born, the parents often considered their son to be an especially beautiful infant. Even strangers who admired the baby tended to make comments like ''what a pretty little girl.'' 
One of the most important factors related to a more homosexual orientation in adolescence and adulthood was how parents responded to the boys when they dressed up as girls and pretended to be girls. Many of the parents, Dr. Green said, thought it was cute and directly or indirectly encouraged the cross-gender behavior. For example, photographs of the boys dressed as girls were found in many family albums of feminine boys but in none of the albums of the comparison group of masculine boys.
No relationship was found between later homosexuality and the amount of time a boy spent with his mother. In fact, many of the feminine boys spent less time with their mothers than did the masculine boys. Nor was there any link to a mother-dominated household. 
However, less time shared between father and young son was an important factor. In the first year of life, the fathers tended to spend somewhat less time with their effeminate sons than did the fathers of masculine boys. During the next four years, however, the differences increased. By the time the boys were 3 to 5 years old, fathers of feminine boys were spending significantly less time with their sons than were fathers of the masculine boys. 
This does not mean, however, that the father rejected the son and that this rejection turned the boy into a sissy. Rather, Dr. Green suggested that the boys' feminine behaviors and rejection of male activities contributed to the fathers' indifference. ''It's not just a question of how parents impinge on a child; the child also impinges on the parents,'' he explained. 
In an earlier developmental study of 50 effeminate boys seen at a children's psychiatric clinic in Greenwich, Conn., Dr. Bernard Zuger, a psychiatrist, reported that the boys' ''closeness to the mother and distance from the father spring from their own needs.'' He suggested that parents need not feel guilty if their effeminate sons turn out to be homosexual. 
Another factor that interfered with the father-son relationship in Dr. Green's study was that the feminine boys were likely to be sick more often and more seriously than the masculine boys.

That's pretty interesting. Having been a sickly child was a pretty common theme in 19th and early 20th Century culture: e.g., Teddy Roosevelt was famous for having overcome his childhood infirmities through force of will. Many writers and artists had been sickly lads.
In most cases, it was the boys' mothers who cared for them when they were ill, especially if a lot of time was spent in hospitals. This also encouraged a more protective parental attitude toward the feminine boy. 
The culture may also play a role, Dr. Green said, though its effects are harder to measure. ''If the culture were less condemning of cross-gender behavior, social stigmatization would be less and perhaps these boys could socialize more with other boys,'' he remarked. ''Certainly that is the case with tomboys, who are treated by society as normal girls.'' 
On the other hand, he cited studies in several different cultures by Dr. Frederick Whitam, sociologist at Arizona State University in Tempe, who found that homosexuals in these cultures were more likely to remember cross-gender behavior in childhood than were heterosexuals. Dr. Marmor pointed out that in many cultures, including certain American Indian tribes, less aggressive boys are recognized by their elders and are given institutionalized roles, usually as a priest. 
Rather than attributing homosexuality to cultural, parental or genetic factors, Dr. Green sees an interaction of the three, as evidenced in particular by a pair of identical twins in his study. One boy was clearly feminine and the other twin typically masculine. The feminine boy was sick a lot and had little to do with his father, whereas the masculine twin had a more typical relationship with his father. As adults, both boys were bisexual, but the feminine twin was far more homosexual than his brother. 
''The twins are the metaphor for this study,'' Dr. Green said. ''They are similar but not the same. The degree to which they are not the same can be explained by the early feminine behavior of one, not by genetics.''
   

60 comments:

peterike said...

Speaking of absent fathers, Howard Stern would invariably ask strippers and porn stars if they had absent fathers, and they nearly always said yes. Anecdotal, but very consistent.

Anonymous said...

You hear the figure of 50% tossed around a lot whenever people talk about twin studies and homosexuality, but those studies were old and the samples not that big.

The most recent large sampled twin study (Australian, I believe ) came up with a very low 20% concordance for homosexuality for monozygotic male twins.

Obviously, some environmental factor is at play and that doesn't mean culture or moms and dads.

Interesting that there's a mention of the gay boys having been sick or sickly. Calling Dr. Cochran.

MQ said...

Many of the boys also repeatedly said they wanted to be girls. At the outset, Dr. Green thought he was examining the origins of male transsexuals -boys who grow up thinking they are girls trapped in male bodies and who may later seek sex-change surgery. However, only one of the feminine boys became a transsexual.

This, unfortunately, is going to change because of the influence of political correctness and the trans lobby. Now parents are being encouraged to see boys' early identification with girls as evidence of transsexuality and are losing the confidence to just snap the kid out of it. I've heard about this among at least two 'progressive' couples I am distantly acquainted with. Cooperating in calling the boy 'she' and permitting or even encouraging him to dress in girl's clothing. It's sad, as it will likely eventually result in surgical self-mutilation.

Theoak said...

"Another factor that interfered with the father-son relationship in Dr. Green's study was that the feminine boys were likely to be sick more often and more seriously than the masculine boys."

Interesting implications if or Cochran's germ theory.

Steve Sailer said...

I read once somebody claiming that pornographic actresses were virtually all sexually abused as children, but ... they tended to be proud of it: e.g., I'm so hot that even when I was 9, my mom's boyfriend went to prison because he couldn't keep his hands off me!

Anonymous said...

I haven't listened to Stern in years, but I remember that he often asked strippers/porn actresses whether they were sexually abused as children, and to my recollection they always said no. Maybe it's hard to admit on the radio.

Hepp said...

"That's pretty interesting. Having been a sickly child was a pretty common theme in 19th and early 20th Century culture: e.g., Teddy Roosevelt was famous for having overcome his childhood infirmities through force of will. Many writers and artists had been sickly lads."

Considering that a very large percentage of children died off due to disease during that time, that's not surprising.

Hepp said...

"Speaking of absent fathers, Howard Stern would invariably ask strippers and porn stars if they had absent fathers, and they nearly always said yes. Anecdotal, but very consistent."

That's probably because of genetics. Promiscuous parents have promiscuous children, no shock there.

Reg Cæsar said...

(Almost wrote this with a slender lavender stylus, but quickly switched to a fat blue one.)

This is also anecdotal, but with several cases of marginal is-he-or-isn't-he fellows I've known, it was the ones with he-man fathers who turned out queer. The ones with "soft" dads were straight. Almost like there was a family limit on manliness, which in the latter cases was spread more evenly.

I'm relieved my own young sons have shown no signs of incipient sissiness, but they do exhibit a noticeably elevated level of pushiness. Does this mean there's a chance they might grow up to be Jews?

Paging Dr Goldberg

Matt in Logan Circle said...

This is all more or less in line with my own experience, as a 'care-free bachelor who values his privacy', although I remain much closer to my father than my mother.

I was a fairly competent athlete...I managed to walk on to a Div I baseball team, as a string bean 155 pound freshman, but I never really liked team sports...since it was a TEAM effort. I wanted to be the center of attention, and would probably have had more fun doing ballet or figure-skating. I didn't want to play baseball so much as I wanted to PERFORM baseball.

Fashion, shallow celebrity gossip fascinated me, even in middle school...I remember watching All About Eve (which is as much a 'tell' as anything), and instantly identifying with Addison DeWitt. So, it was not a huge surprise that I turned out as I did.

I would also note that boys can be both un-masculine and gender-conforming.

Nerds lack an aggressive masculinity and are famously un-athletic. However, I don't know many (any) gay nerds, and the only interest gays and nerds share seem to share is an endless capacity for maudlin self-pity.

I cannot think of many gay men who enjoy video games...Nor will you find many gays among science fiction/fantasy fans, or other nerdy pursuits like role-playing board games, heavy metal, open-source programming, etc.

Such activities skew 90% (or more) male, but I would not call any of them masculine... for all the posturing of BRUTAL black metal nihilists, it is still the realm of chaotically-dressed dorks, not diabolically-powered badasses.

Anonymous said...

I wrestled at a Big Ten University and never to my knowledge came across a homosexual. Wrestling is debatably the most aggressive sport at universities and high schools. People like to bash wrestling and make the clichéd joke about two guys rolling around on the ground together but we can't forget that wrestlers wear spandex singlets, so if rolling around on the ground was your thing it's pretty unlikely you'd be able to stand up after the match without every spectator noticing how aroused you were. Given that basketball and wrestling season coincide, it's not surprising Jason Collins chose to play the less aggressive of the two sports where he would be able to hide his over zealousness on grinding up to opposing players without spectators noticing his excitement due to the baggy shorts he was allowed to tuck stuff away in.

Anonymous said...

This is also anecdotal, but with several cases of marginal is-he-or-isn't-he fellows I've known, it was the ones with he-man fathers who turned out queer. The ones with "soft" dads were straight.

Overcompensation, just like super-duper-jock president Teddy Roosevelt.

Such activities skew 90% (or more) male, but I would not call any of them masculine... for all the posturing of BRUTAL black metal nihilists, it is still the realm of chaotically-dressed dorks, not diabolically-powered badasses.

More overcompensation.

Anonymous said...

I cannot think of many gay men who enjoy video games...Nor will you find many gays among science fiction/fantasy fans, or other nerdy pursuits like role-playing board games, heavy metal, open-source programming, etc.

Such activities skew 90% (or more) male, but I would not call any of them masculine... for all the posturing of BRUTAL black metal nihilists, it is still the realm of chaotically-dressed dorks, not diabolically-powered badasses.


How are they not masculine? You seem to have that warped, homoerotic view of masculinity that gays seem to have e.g. leather, cop uniforms, bodybuilding, etc.

Anonymous said...

Given that basketball and wrestling season coincide, it's not surprising Jason Collins chose to play the less aggressive of the two sports where he would be able to hide his over zealousness on grinding up to opposing players without spectators noticing his excitement due to the baggy shorts he was allowed to tuck stuff away in.

He's also 7 feet tall and black. Tall people and blacks don't tend to wrestle.

James Kabala said...

"[M]any, if not most, young children - boys as well as girls - occasionally dress up in their mothers' clothes, put on makeup or jewelry, play with dolls or assume the role of the opposite sex in fantasy play."

I am athletically inept and not at all macho and I never did any of these things. Is this for real or a sick NYT fantasy?

Udolpho.com said...

Barring abuse, family dynamics seem an unlikely source of homosexual behavior. More focus should be placed on such things as the influence of crowdedness, overwhelming social networks such as in large schools, and possibly in utero overstimulation. I believe factors like these have influenced not only how many adolescents and young adults have homoerotic experiences, but also how many of them end up seeing homosexuality as normative ("just two people in love...in a gloryhole").

Anonymous said...

It's funny how folks can interpret the same thing so differently. A few bloggers dug up this article up a few days ago. I think I saw it on Josh Barro's feed first. Predictably they shared this article by prefacing how awful it was and how far we've come as a society to understanding gays.

Yet when I read the article I thought it was pretty balanced and seemed like common sense.

Anonymous said...

I read an issue of Discover or Science Digest in 1990 or so, and it had an article with much the opposite view of male homosexuality.

It posited that the pre-high school (middle school and junior high) male jocks are the most at-risk for becoming gay. That would be the time they reach puberty, and their sports interest would mean spending most of their time around other boys in gym clothes and locker rooms. Supposedly, that meant a higher chance of sexually "imprinting" onto other guys.

jody said...

interesting article. could never publish anything like this today.

africans wrestle, but no 7 foot guys wrestle. they would be terrible. guys that tall are easily taken down and pinned. center of gravity is way too high, not to mention they are not coordinated enough. the biggest wrestlers, the guys who are 300 pounds and in good shape at that weight too, max out at 6-4 or 6-5. this is also why no 7 foot guys play football in the NFL. easily pushed around by 'smaller' guys, too slow, too uncoordinated, power to weight ratio too low.

kurt angle used to talk about how backstage in WWF they would goof around and how he could easily take down every single guy and pin them in 1 minute, and angle was one of the smallest guys in the show. in the ring he looked really small compared to the giant guys but in a real fight he would smash them all except lesnar.

he did admit to having trouble keeping big show down, because he was so huge and strong. he had to take him down repeatedly to get control. in a real wrestling match this would have just been a tech fall after a bunch of takedown escapes. lesnar didn't have trouble with big show though since he's a good amount bigger and stronger than angle.

dorky tangent over.

Anonymous said...

but they do exhibit a noticeably elevated level of pushiness. Does this mean there's a chance they might grow up to be Jews?

LOL +1 at least

Anonymous said...

"I wrestled at a Big Ten University and never to my knowledge came across a homosexual. Wrestling is debatably the most aggressive sport at universities and high schools. People like to bash wrestling and make the clichéd joke about two guys rolling around on the ground together but we can't forget that wrestlers wear spandex singlets, so if rolling around on the ground was your thing it's pretty unlikely you'd be able to stand up after the match without every spectator noticing how aroused you were. Given that basketball and wrestling season coincide, it's not surprising Jason Collins chose to play the less aggressive of the two sports where he would be able to hide his over zealousness on grinding up to opposing players without spectators noticing his excitement due to the baggy shorts he was allowed to tuck stuff away in."

I don't think anyone really believes competitive wrestling has lots of gays. No need to be defensive. The people here are smart enough to know that very few high-level male athletes are homosexual. As for Jason Collins, as others said, he is tall and black, so his sport of choice was determined by that.

Simon in London said...

>> Matt in Logan Circle said...
Nerds lack an aggressive masculinity and are famously un-athletic. However, I don't know many (any) gay nerds, and the only interest gays and nerds share seem to share is an endless capacity for maudlin self-pity.

I cannot think of many gay men who enjoy video games...Nor will you find many gays among science fiction/fantasy fans, or other nerdy pursuits like role-playing board games<<

There are lots of gay male nerds in my Dungeons & Dragons club. They like being Dungeon Masters. >:) The DM is the centre of attention at the table, in a face to face, highly social environment. You may be right about videogames etc.
Most D&D players these days seem to work in tech professions, I don't know if this is less true of homosexual D&D players; I suspect not. They don't tend to present as particularly campy.
There are also a fair number of lesbian D&D players. The high incidence of homosexuality may be due to it being in London, though, rather than a provincial city.

Simon in London said...

"Anonymous Anonymous said...
It's funny how folks can interpret the same thing so differently. A few bloggers dug up this article up a few days ago. I think I saw it on Josh Barro's feed first. Predictably they shared this article by prefacing how awful it was and how far we've come as a society to understanding gays.

Yet when I read the article I thought it was pretty balanced and seemed like common sense."

I guess they disliked the term sissy, and disliked the idea that parents might not want to encourage homosexuality?
The article generally seemed to favour nature over nurture as the explanation, which is line with current official teachings.

The disease explanation seems interesting, and might explain the identical twins with different orientations, but I'd suspect that it's something that only affects those already vulnerable for other reasons.

Anonymous said...

Nerds lack an aggressive masculinity and are famously un-athletic. However, I don't know many (any) gay nerds, and the only interest gays and nerds share seem to share is an endless capacity for maudlin self-pity.

I cannot think of many gay men who enjoy video games...Nor will you find many gays among science fiction/fantasy fans, or other nerdy pursuits like role-playing board games, heavy metal, open-source programming, etc.


Anecdotal datapoint: I'm a bisexual male and I'm into SF/F, programming and video games. I know at least half a dozen others who fit into that cluster as well.

Anonymous said...

I don't think that STEM attracts gays are much as GAYS are being "attracted" into STEM, Science-Fiction and Fantasy thanks to the elites wanting to destroy STEM.

It's the same shit with WOMEN into STEM.

Now that there's so much PUSHING of WOMEN into STEM, there's also a lot of GAYS going into it as well.

It's like propaganda for gays and women going into STEM.

Gays are as bad as women at STEM, but both groups are being into it.

A gay sci-fi fan is like a atheist female Rebecca Watson STEM girl.

All propaganda, no substance. They don't belong there.

Udolpho.com said...

I don't know why someone implied nerds are unlikely to be gay. Nerds are famously homophilic and beyond that tend to be extremely passive and uncertain, which suits them to early homosexual experiences. Note that all kinds of personality issues produce sexual side effects--sexuality is fragile and easily disturbed by other problems. Thus homosexuality and bisexuality can be expected in a variety of cases that don't share many variables other than a general disruption in mental health.

Then there's the fact that crowdedness appears to be reducing sexual dimorphism--i.e., there is a greater emphasis on androngynous features, from athletic and muscular women to slender, pajama-wearing, childish men. This is likely to influence sexual development in marginal cases. And who is more childish/unmasculine than a male nerd? It's practically a part of the definition. I would guess that nerds also make up a disproportionate share of trannies.

Effeminacy in men is definitely increasing, you can see it from generation to generation. This is environmental impact, something HBD types are not always very interested in examining.

Anonymous said...

I read an issue of Discover or Science Digest in 1990 or so, and it had an article with much the opposite view of male homosexuality.

It posited that the pre-high school (middle school and junior high) male jocks are the most at-risk for becoming gay. That would be the time they reach puberty, and their sports interest would mean spending most of their time around other boys in gym clothes and locker rooms. Supposedly, that meant a higher chance of sexually "imprinting" onto other guys.


Bullshit. As a former childhood nerd, I'll be the first to out this one: this had to be thought up by another envious childhood nerd i.e. "aww, those jocks are really just closeted homos. F them."

Cail Corishev said...

Amazing to think that, less than three decades ago, even the NYT understood that a boy was better off growing up heterosexual if that was an option. It's taken an amazing whitewashing job to convince the masses that homosexuality isn't a major drawback in having a long, happy, healthy life.

Marissa said...

Nor will you find many gays among science fiction/fantasy fans

More anecdata: It is unfortunate that fantasy and sci-fi are grouped together. The former has now devolved into female group sex fantasies and kowtowing to homosexuals while the latter is still a mostly cerebral, male endeavor (a notable exception being Vox Day's favorite punching bag, John Scalzi). I see far more homosexuals enjoying the former rather than the latter. And I'd put the stance of Tolkien closer to sci-fi writers than today's fantasy writers.

I'm unaware of any strain of traditionalism remaining in fantasy, while sci-fi at least has a good amount of conservative male writers who focus more on martial and hard science topics.

Dutch Boy said...

One of Teddy Roosevelt's biographers studied the pattern of TR's childhood
illnesses and concluded that his complaints were not random and were motivated by a desire to avoid going to church (i.e., they happened disproportionately on Saturday night/Sunday morning).

candid_observer said...

It's depressing in a way to read this article. It reflects a time in which science was far less constrained as to the outcomes that were acceptable to publish.

One of the most frustrating things about the current reign of political correctness on all of these gender/sexuality issues is that we will never be allowed to know the unvarnished truth about any of them.

I have no doubt that there is a significant biological (not necessarily genetic) component of sexual orientation and of sexual identification. I suspect that tied into those components are dispositions toward other cognitive and psychological traits.

But we will never be allowed to have an honest account of any of that.

My impression, for example, is that gays, even in our far more accepting society, are more likely to be depressed and unhappy than others, and display other kinds of pathology. This holds in spades for transsexuals. On the other hand, it seems to me that gays manage to punch above their weight in many cognitive domains (even though on average they may be less educated).

But is any of that true? Do the statistics bear that out?

We will never have honest answers to those questions, because we can only have "correct" answers.

Mr. Anon said...

"Anonymous said...

Anecdotal datapoint: I'm a bisexual male and I'm into SF/F, programming and video games. I know at least half a dozen others who fit into that cluster as well.

The term "Nerd" has become debased. It used to refer to shy introverted people (usually men, some women) who were interested in technical things (science, electronics, ham-radio), or even scholarly pursuits like history. Now it has just become synonomous with "fan-boy".

Mr. Anon said...

"I believe Green's study of tomboys eventually came up with the common sense finding that not all that many tomboy girls grow up to be lesbians, but a lot of lesbians were tomboys as girls. The number of models, actresses, and other glamor girls who tell interviewers they were tomboys as adolescents is noticeably high."

I think a more plausible explanation for that is that it has become fasionable for women to claim to have been tomboys (the butt-kicking babe phenomenon you have pointed out). But that does not necessarily mean that they really were tomboys as traditionally defined. A common trope in movies is the really pretty girl who knows a lot about cars because her father or brothers were mechanics and she used to help them. Frankly, this is nonsense. What a girl means by "working on cars" is standing around talking to the greasy guys who are actually working on cars.

Anonymous said...

"I read once somebody claiming that pornographic actresses were virtually all sexually abused as children"

I think that's a myth based on looking for a nurture explanation for why a minority of women are as highly-sexed as men. I think the much simpler explanation is relatively high testosterone.

I do think it's plausible that women who are like that who *also* had absent fathers may be more likely to get into stripping / porn for the attention.

Anonymous said...

"Note that all kinds of personality issues produce sexual side effects--sexuality is fragile and easily disturbed by other problems."

Nope. Some things are simply evolutionarily basic. Sexual desire for women is primitive, as basic as a desire to eat, to sleep.

Simplify. Simplify. Something has screwed up a gay man's brain. If anyone really wanted to find out what it is, if money were spent on it, it shouldn't be too hard to find out the microbiology of sexual attraction and then, what screws it up.

Anonymous said...

Bullshit. As a former childhood nerd, I'll be the first to out this one: this had to be thought up by another envious childhood nerd i.e. "aww, those jocks are really just closeted homos. F them."

I was the one who posted the original article, and even I was skeptical. Male homosexuality has nothing to do with either nerds or jocks. Sexual imprinting, to the extent that it happens in humans, happens much earlier than puberty. For most people in western societies, puberty is the time they just begin to socially engage with the opposite sex. At the start of this period, their social life is very much same-sex. This applies to jocks, nerds, and berms equally.

Anonymous said...

Then there's the fact that crowdedness appears to be reducing sexual dimorphism--i.e., there is a greater emphasis on androngynous features, from athletic and muscular women to slender, pajama-wearing, childish men.

That was the case in East and South Asia for all of recorded history - heavy crowding leading to androgyny. Compare the massive sexual dimorphism of classical Europe, Middle East, and especially Africa to the lesser dimorphism of China and India.

This is likely to influence sexual development in marginal cases.

No, not likely. Nearly all of the negative / traumatic experiences that influence sexual development happen before the age of five, with the home and family.

And who is more childish/unmasculine than a male nerd? It's practically a part of the definition.

Then how come Simon Baron-Cohen came up with the "extreme male brain" theory of autism, nerdishness, and Neanderthal genes?

And as for "childish", how about all the pro football and basketball players who never learned self-control, at least outside the field or court? Nobody bothered to discipline them as children, at home or school. So many of them end up in prison, or in dead-end jobs, or welfare.

Anonymous said...

"Amazing to think that, less than three decades ago, even the NYT understood that a boy was better off growing up heterosexual if that was an option. It's taken an amazing whitewashing job to convince the masses that homosexuality isn't a major drawback in having a long, happy, healthy life."

Let's not go too far here: "the masses" ARE convinced homosexuality is odd, weird, maladaptive at best and "icky," "yucky,"
"gross" and "maladaptive" at worst, but as long as it's not their kid it happens to, they can tolerate pretending not to care or pretending it's just the way of the world.

Marissa said...

"I looked up stats on this hunch, and found that most victims of sexual assault are children. Around 70%, according to the Bureau of Justice Statistics. The peak age for sexual assault – including forcible rape – for females is 14 years old. For males it is, sickeningly, 4 years old."

http://www.the-spearhead.com/2013/10/31/a-sure-fire-method-for-preventing-rape/

That might have something to do with it! I might even say that the younger a child, boy or girl, is sexually assaulted, the more homosexual they turn it.

Gottlieb said...

The theory of the pathogen is very strange . I recently read a text that speaks precisely the presence of the pathogen and tendencies in a society for cultural non-conformity . Clearly that in societies where the population is less culturally conformist that there is no predominant pathogen . What did this indicate ?
Now , as already imagined all of us, regardless of sexuality , we '' '' infected by pathogens . The problem of the theory developed by Cochran is that it seems to imply , and in bad faith , that only homosexuals ( or as they like to say , a specific type of homosexual) can be infected by pathogens , which in turn , change the their behavior .
Well, I believe that we are not like sheep , ok , metaphorically the vast majority of humanity is , but in a real sense , there are major differences between humans and sheep . In most , if there really is a pathogen that changes the behavior of a section of the population ( according to them, male , because female bisexuality is considered '' tender '' and was therefore selected , supposedly) , so there are numerous infectious agents that change our behavior, all of our behavior, normal and abnormal .
It is clear that humans are divided according to the amount of exposure of sex hormones , whereas the classic straight tend to exhibit a hormonal balance. So we , men : high, medium high, medium low, medium , with low testosterone : low, medium low, medium , medium high and high estrogen .
Now , why instead of making it clear that they believe that only homosexuals are affected by pathogens , they could be a bit more honest in saying that all mankind is ' affected ' ?
What I think is that the pathogen that affects them (the exclusively homosexual , according to Cochran ) gay men may be the same pathogens that affect women's behavior , ie , it may be that excess estrogen , create an organic environment within body of exclusive homosexual, very similar to a woman's body .
I worry if the brave new world could one day become reality. This means , people with God's syndrome , stirring radically in humanity trying to create a society that fits your ideal model . Soon after discovering this probable pathogenic relation of homosexuality , Jayman wasted no time in questioning whether a 'cure' would be possible or even if it would be possible to distribute a vaccine against homosexuality . What would be the next step ?
Scary.
Interestingly the relationship between intelligence and homosexuality. I have the impression that is really strong , especially by people who have known ( study in the humanities , to bump into a homosexual , just walking in the hallway ) . All ( that I know ) are more intelligent than average , seem to have better musical taste , tend to exhibit good education indicators ...
I'm of the theory that polygenic recessive traits attract pathogens , precisely because they are recessive and therefore because they had less time to adapt to environmental agents . Autism , Schizophrenia see to mind . Both polygenic combinations are rare and at great expense , but with great advantages especially when their beneficial traits or enhancers are distributed by population. Schizophrenia works directly with increased creativity for heterozygous population while autism works directly for the increased intelligence in the same population .

Anonymous said...

Black wrestler infected with HIV, found to have videotaped 32 of his male and female sexual conquests.

http://www.nydailynews.com/news/crime/hiv-positive-college-student-secretly-filmed-sex-tapes-32-people-police-article-1.1584962

Gottlieb said...


...While the two are strongly epigenetic , their more adaptive variations such as asperger and schizotypy are predominantly hereditary . What this seems to indicate ?
People with an allele for autism may have less weak immune system that someone with autism. The nerd has the least weak immune system that someone with asperger . The classic neurotypical has less weak immune system that someone with schizophrenia, esquizotipo , autism, asperger and nerds. One possibility .
Why does this happen?
Because the brain, more hungry present in most of these conditions. A great brain or energetically powerful (or better connected) consumes more energy and leaves little for the rest of the body. A body that is energy balance is predispose to infections.
It is the theory of the balance of nature, each extra piece body has a price to pay more. Great or better connected brains result in weakening of the immune system.
And what would be the adaptation is not environmental camouflage??
If schizophrenia and autism, extreme high cost, especially its workable variations, may have been responsible for the development of human culture and technology and expansion of man the planet. Environmental changes cause selective changes which in turn cause changes predominance of pathogens. Increased intelligence is directly related to the increase and decrease in testosterone. '' Normal'' people are the result of exposure to sex hormones balanced. Therefore, are boring, tend to be conformist and uncreative.

Anonymous said...

"the feminine boys were likely to be sick more often and more seriously than the masculine boys"

Can't remember if this is just my impression or whether I read someone's research, but many high achievers seem to have had serious illness in childhood - although the only one I can think of offhand is Joni Mitchell.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Category:People_with_poliomyelitis

Anonymous said...

homeosexuality?

this discovery seems sensible enough.

it's true of girls as well. if you encourage girls to act very feminine, they will.
but if you pressure them to act more asexual and sex-neutral, that will have an effect too.

hindu women will act more feminine in india than in the US.

Marc B said...

Many of these sissy boys did well (in quality and quantity) with the girls while in high school, far better than the nerds.

Anonymous said...

There are few Jason Collins references here. Apologies in advance if I've missed something - I follow basketball fairly closely but not Collins specifically (why would I? He was terrible).

I'm somewhat suspicious of Collins' claims. It seems strange to me that neither his twin brother nor his college roommates nor his college girlfriend had any idea he was gay.

Is it possible he's not really gay, and his claims are some bizarre attention scheme? Perhaps he knew his career was close to an end and he theorized that being gay would make him enough of a novelty that some PC-ridden team would give him their last roster spot.

E. Rekshun said...

@peterike: Speaking of absent fathers, Howard Stern would invariably ask strippers and porn stars if they had absent fathers, and they nearly always said yes. Anecdotal, but very consistent.

Similarly, all the episodes of "Teen Mom" and "16 and Pregnant" seem to be lacking a father in the household.

Anonymous said...

peterike said..."Speaking of absent fathers, Howard Stern would invariably ask strippers and porn stars if they had absent fathers, and they nearly always said yes. Anecdotal, but very consistent."

A friend of mine (born and raised in California) who took a 2-3 year work assignment in Ft. Lauderdale. He didn't know anybody, however as freshly minted Harvard MBA was full of self-confidence. He decided to cut a swath through the South Florida stripper population.

I'll spare you the details of how he achieved this (via prostitution) but he was quite successful (to the extent you'd define sleeping with a bunch of strippers as successful). After about a year or so he grew tired of it (he described it as like kicking puppies) he moved on to normal women.

He told me that, of the more than a dozen conquests he had, every single one of them was from a broken home (never knew father or father left early in life) and about half were addicted to cocaine.

HA said...

"But we will never be allowed to have an honest account of any of that. My impression, for example, is that gays, even in our far more accepting society, are more likely to be depressed and unhappy than others…"

If you do a basic search on homosexuality and depression, you will see that the accounting so far indicates that homosexuals *are* significantly more likely to be depressed, even in relatively accepting countries (e.g. the Nordics). There is even a body of research (by non-fundamentalists) showing that a small fraction (i.e. significantly < 50%) of homosexuals *do* appear to benefit from a concerted effort to become, well, less homosexual. Here’s one such article.

Of course, I have no idea how much of that kind of research is being denounced by certain people as biased, or based on insufficient data, or just plain hateful, to the extent that it is simply buried by the mainstream press, and to the extent that many of those involved will find it difficult to obtain tenure or further research money, but that’s a separate issue.

Anonymous said...

'' Normal'' people are the result of exposure to sex hormones balanced. Therefore, are boring, tend to be conformist and uncreative

At best. At worst they are Nazis / Khmer Rouge about their conformity and uncreativity.

HA said...

if money were spent on it, it shouldn't be too hard to find out the microbiology of sexual attraction and then, what screws it up.

I don’t think you’re giving Korean/Chinese/Indian and other such researchers enough credit. To the extent there’s a rupee to be made from preventing homosexuality among the offspring of those who are already expending considerable effort into making sure their next child is not another female, that money will be spent. There is a wide world out there that is immune to current Western notions regarding homosexual rights.

Anonymous said...

I don’t think you’re giving Korean/Chinese/Indian and other such researchers enough credit.

Why should anyone in the West give any credit to dumb lazy long-haired bearded heathen wogs who somehow mastered Affordable Family Formation?

To the extent there’s a rupee to be made from preventing homosexuality among the offspring of those who are already expending considerable effort into making sure their next child is not another female, that money will be spent. There is a wide world out there that is immune to current Western notions regarding homosexual rights.

First of all the Western idea of "homosexual" doesn't really exist in China, Japan, Korea, Vietnam, India, and Indonesia. The best way to solve the gay problem is not to have any.

Second of all, so much of Western masculinity is nothing more than slave morality gussied up as sportsmanship, chivalry, honour, fair play, Americanism, etc. In Asia, being a real man means being an elitist master not a slave, in countries where such a thing is still legal.

HA said...

Why should anyone in the West give any credit to dumb lazy long-haired bearded heathen wogs

You really need to get out more, and maybe leave the white sheets at home next time. They’re clearly obstructing your vision. Contrary to what you might have picked up from some of the comments here, not all Asians got their professorships and patents and research citations by copying someone else’s work. But something tells me it’s pointless to argue with the likes of you on that matter.

So let me instead point out that the Western ideal of homosexual (which did not really exist in the West, either, until about half century ago), and Asian notions of being a real man, are beside the point when it comes to wanting male children who prefer the kind of procreation that does not involve turkey basters. Many people the whole planet over will pay good money to ensure they give birth to one of those, regardless of what some in the West might think of it. Now, if you want to believe those heathens are only going to be able to monetize that desire by first hiring some Übermensch to figure it out for them, you go ahead and believe whatever helps you sleep at night, but they've done that kind of thing before. So, one way or another, it’s going to happen – i.e., if it can happen.

Percy Gryce said...

Doesn't the Green study indicate that we should do everything possible to prevent the normalization of homosexuality? I realize that that train has left the station, but the truth is still the truth.

Anonymous said...

That was the case in East and South Asia for all of recorded history - heavy crowding leading to androgyny. Compare the massive sexual dimorphism of classical Europe, Middle East, and especially Africa to the lesser dimorphism of China and India.

More people packed into the same space (and thus more intense competition) should mean greater dimorphism, not less.

Simon in London said...

"Percy Gryce said...
Doesn't the Green study indicate that we should do everything possible to prevent the normalization of homosexuality? I realize that that train has left the station, but the truth is still the truth."

I got the impression it was saying that would only make a difference in a minority of cases, and even that not certain.

HA:
"There is even a body of research (by non-fundamentalists) showing that a small fraction (i.e. significantly < 50%) of homosexuals *do* appear to benefit from a concerted effort to become, well, less homosexual. Here’s one such article."

This seems right. It would be more surprising if it was impossible ever to change orientation. But
for men at least, in most cases it seems pretty hardwired in. It looks as if a minority of gay men can become ex-gay, but the majority cannot, even if they want to.
Of course the politically correct line is that it is impossible ever for any homosexual to become non-homosexual, even women, and saying otherwise is hate speech.

Gottlieb said...

''More people packed into the same space (and thus more intense competition) should mean greater dimorphism, not less.''

Then you could explain to us why the most densely populated areas have lower dimorphism. In densely populated regions, intense competition should be replaced by cooperation, because it has little room for the male ego. As a result, men'' extras'', or extreme types are slowly eliminated. This explains the smaller amount of creative geniuses and classically creative types in Asia.

Gottlieb said...

''At best. At worst they are Nazis / Khmer Rouge about their conformity and uncreativity.''

In this case you're talking about psychopaths and sociopaths . I refer to the normal types , normal man , within the range of balanced distribution of hormones , where the nerds are on the border . These people tend to be also biologically normal , with brains designed for group behavior and always cooperative . In other words are pseudo - cowards (they are not cowards indeed, because your biology has a major influence on this type of behavior, do not do it on purpose , maybe nobody do it on purpose , we are all pseudo - zombies , slaves of nature ) . For example , my mother currently believes that homosexuality is normal , she does not believe because you believe internally , ie , built his own belief . She believes because the media pushes it daily and like all come to believe more or less the same thing , it follows the group.
The same Germans who engage in today with multiculturalism are exactly the same were shy enthusiasts of Nazism. I mean, they are not conservative, high testosterone and low estrogen. I call this type of shallow man. The trend unhappy of mankind is that they colonize all anthropocentric pores, precisely because they are devoid of inner essence and therefore extremely adaptable.
If you read 1984, you should have read the part where the protagonist says that'' the same dark, and low type, is what else has survived while the government propaganda shows young slender, blond and athletic.''
Geniuses are the exact opposite of the shallow man and rightfully so that communism is extremely harmful to human creativity. Because the communist leaders are all mostly the type sociopath that as with their brothers psychopaths are not genuinely creative. Genius is the greatest enemy of equality.

Anonymous said...

Of course the politically correct line is that it is impossible ever for any homosexual to become non-homosexual, even women, and saying otherwise is hate speech.

There is a difference between political correctness, and simple LIVE AND LET LIVE, which is actually a very manly and conservative virtue.

HA said...

"...for men at least, in most cases [sexual orientation] seems pretty hardwired..."

I have no grounds to dispute that, but there is still a lot that leaves out, and for the reasons noted above, that is not likely to be thoroughly researched any time soon. For example, there are paraphiliacs who can only get aroused in the presence of squashed cockroaches, or human feces, or more alarmingly, in the proximity of intense pain. So for some people, something can happen well after the womb that drastically alters their sexual preferences. Therefore, I would not find it particularly surprising if there are male homosexuals who can only get sexually aroused in the presence of a woman’s vagina, and conversely, heterosexual men who need to see a penis (or some other male body part) to get their funk on, at which point, the whole notion of homosexuality and heterosexuality loses its meaning. (That being said, that kind if impressioning may only be possible in early childhood, which might still mean that many people are pretty much hard-wired by the time they are adults.)