Homosexuality, a social stigma

The harsh truth is that there is no ‘cure’. We cure diseases and medical conditions that hinder our normal functioning. By this definition, a ‘deviant’ social orientation does not qualify as a disease. It is a symptom of a person’s being out of sync with prescribed social norms. However, societal norms aren’t stagnant. Like everything else built by us humans they wither away and are rebuilt by every new generation.

Is homosexuality a sign of some inherent evil?

There is overwhelming evidence now that some people are born with alternate sexual orientations. According to an article published in Psychology Today, some scientists have discovered links between a person’s genetic constitution and his or her sexual orientation. Whereas, some researchers have placed more emphasis upon the social conditions in which a child grows up. These debates notwithstanding, most researchers agree that alternate social orientation is not a symptom of some underlying crookedness or lack of scruples that may be disciplined. Neither is it a condition like a cold that can be cured through popping pills.

Is homosexuality a choice?

As for the question about whether it is a choice- the answer is both yes and no. It is a choice in the same manner as feeling attracted towards a woman is a choice for ‘normal’ men. It can be ‘cured’ through threats and fear but not without destroying the self-esteem and mental tranquility of the person concerned.

How about people who ‘cure’ it?

It is as futile to try to find a cure for homosexuality as it is to find a cure for a person’s liking for soccer. You can suppress it but cannot ‘cure’ it. However, unfortunately, there is no dearth of quack doctors willing to take advantage of the social stigma attached to alternate sexual preferences and prey upon the anxiety of over-anxious parents and relatives.

What we need to understand is that there is nothing wrong with being a homosexual. It is not a medical condition but a symptom of our reluctance to accept that not all humans are alike. Life for homosexuals is usually very tough. Besides facing constant sermonising for a wrong they haven’t committed and hence cannot correct, they are also often subjected to bullying by their peers. If you as a kin feel torn between accepting and rejecting it, imagine what the person himself goes through every day. Trying to conceal it would be disastrous. Our duty as caring parents and peers should be to accept him/her for what he is and to help him/her come to terms with it. Demonstrate your love frequently and encourage him to remain connected to the community. To swim against the tide is never easy- to stand up with self-respect against stigma is tough. Make sure that your beloved one doesn’t feel alone and left out.