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Homosexual “Love”

The self-pitying adolescent admires exactly those who possess — as he sees it, anyhow — the characteristics he is lacking. As a rule of thumb, the heart of a homosexual’s inferiority complex may be deduced from the traits he or she most admires in others of the same sex. If Leonardo da Vinci sought uncivilized boys of the street, we have reason to suppose he viewed himself as overly well-behaved and well-bred. French novelist Andre Gide felt he was an inhibited Calvinist boy who could not make contacts with the more adventurous boys of his age, and from that frustration sprang his frenetic admiration of boyish “good for nothings” and his longing for playful, intimate friendships with them. The boy with the worrisome, nonaggressive mother started admiring “soldier types” because he felt quite the opposite. Most homosexual men feel attracted to “masculine” young men, athletic types, men who are cheerful and make friends easily.Their masculinity inferiority complex becomes more apparent by that — effeminate men are unattractive to most homosexual men. The stronger a woman’s lesbian emotions are, the less feminine she usually feels, and the more she looks for feminine types. Both partners of a homosexual “couple” — at least initially — are attracted to traits of physique of behavior in the other with regard to maleness that they feel they themselves do not haveIn other words, they view the other’s masculinity of femininity as “better” than their own, although in fact both may be deficient in masclinity or femininity. It is the same as with other inferiority complexes: one looks up to other people who are thought to possess the capacity or trait with regard to which one feels justified. Apart from that, the man most desired for his mascline qualities or the woman most desired for her femininity is hardly ever available for a homosexual man or lesbian woman, because precisely these types are usually heterosexual.

For the adolescent who feels inferior, admiration of idealized same-sex types produces eroticization. For what is desired is a close, exclusive, affectionate intimacy, warmth for the poor desolate soul one is. In puberty, not only is it common to idealize a person or a type of person but also to experience diffuse erotic feelings in connection with such persons. The need to be affirmed by an idol whose body and appearance are so highly admired, sometimes with desperate jealousy, may become a desire to be caressed and cherished by him or her, leading to erotic reveries.

A boy who feels like a sissy may in his fantasy be aroused by what he in his immature view sees as masculine symbols: men in leather clothes, with mustaches, driving motorcycles, aand so on. Many homosexuals have a sexuality centered on fetishes. They are obsessed with underwear, a large penis, and so on, all indications of their pubertal sexual life.

Adolescent eroticization of same-sex idols is not extraordinary in itself. The relevant question is why it becomes overwhelming in some, blocking most, if not all, heterosexual interests. The answer, as we have seen, lies in the adolescent’s deep feelings of inferiority in relation to his same-sex peers, his feelings of “not belonging”, and his self-pity. There is a parallel phenomenon in heterosexuality: girls who most hysterically idolize male pop-stars are likely to be the ones who feel lonely and think they are unattractive to boys. For the homosexually inclined, the stronger the feeling of being hopelessly “different”, the stronger the fascination with same-sex idols.

 

GERARD J.M. VAN DEN AARDWEG, PH.D.
The Battle for Normality (1997) Ignatius Press: San Francisco

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