What Does It Mean To Be Homosexual?

Aside from the obvious, what does it mean and why does it matter?

The more I spend time with fellow “homos”, the more I realize we have nothing — and everything — in common. As with any other group of people, we have had vastly different experiences. Some have made it smoothly from Point A to Point B, feeling no need to explore further, and others are still meandering somewhere around the mid-alphabet area, thinking that the goal is Z and they’ll get there eventually.

And that pretty well describes humanity as a whole. We are safe or we are adventurous. We find comfort in security or we risk it all to find out what else is out there.

If I were to hazard a guess about the evolution of human sexuality, it would be to propose that our obsession with “sex” is entering obsolescence. We have elevated the process by which life is perpetuated to some sort of mythic means of “seeing God”, “moving the world”, the ultimate goal of human experience, when really, it just feels good. Let’s not be grandiose and give it any more vital import than that.

Yet, we’re still trying to control each other over what has essentially become a recreational past time. We base lifelong relationships on whether or not we are sexually compatible and far too often, we find out — too late — that we are not. So what do we do? We go off and find someone else who might be. And someone else, and someone else, and someone else….

We all do it. Gay, straight — we too often miss the essence of the person because of how the body parts fit. We try so hard to wedge ourselves into some preconceived mold that we completely lose touch with who we are and who we are meant to be. For as long as sexuality is the most important part of the relationship, we’ll never find the person who is the perfect one to share our life with.

But as religion would have it, our wonderfully expressive, creative selves must be crammed into a tiny box of acceptable behavior. Please forgive the irony of that statement but maybe it’s entirely apropos. We have reduced the whole of human experience into a weak, submissive woman at the hands of an angry, powerfully endowed God.

Maybe homosexuality exists to bring balance to that energy. Maybe homosexuality understands that this dynamic cannot continue if humanity is to ultimately survive and evolve. And maybe, that’s exactly what was intended and we continue to keep it from happening because we don’t want to further anger Big Daddy, when maybe what Big Daddy needs is an intervention from his family.

What homosexuality is not, at least from what I’ve seen, is an obsession with sex. It is about a balance of power in relationships. It is about learning to embrace both the masculine and the feminine in each of us. It is about encouraging ALL couples, gay and straight, to find the place of cooperation that appreciates the strong and the vulnerable parts of each other and learns to love them equally.

A great relationship does not just raise healthy, happy children. It raises happy, healthy adults. We need to learn to trust each other to know how to get from Point A to Point B in the most effective way possible. And if it’s your inclination to make it all the way to Point Z, then may you find that perfect companion to help you get there.

Of Purple Fur, Stryker Frames, and Changing Paradigms

sure11-e1263490212475A fluffy white dog I walked this morning had two patches of bright purple in the fur just above her ears. I’d never seen that before and immediately my brain started flipping through the files of why it might be there. Some sort of new flea medicine? Markers for holes drilled in her skull to drain fluid or to put her in traction on a Stryker frame?

Going through the possibilities made me think of the scene in “Mrs. Doubtfire” I caught last night where her identity is revealed and Sally Field’s face goes through a litany of expressions as her brain tries to process a thousand flashbacks at once, struggling to make sense of what she is seeing. Ultimately, the emotion that overwhelms her is anger.

This led me to think about the process people must have gone through when they were told that the world was not flat but spherical. Nothing they could see, nothing they’d ever been told, supported this new idea. Those who insisted there was nothing to be afraid of were branded heathens and heretics. Anger must have been the only way to protect themselves from the confusion of feeling like they had to defend something that had never really been important to think about but was now suddenly crucial to their very way of life.

This is what the idea of marriage equality looks like to me. Something that was a given, a societal expectation that people took part in because in most cases it was easier to be married than not, suddenly looks completely different to them because they are being asked to look at long held views in another way. Their very safety feels threatened, not physically, but emotionally. What they have been told to believe is being challenged, which is frightening and on some level humiliating, and the fear manifests itself in anger and rejection of the perceived threat.

How we see things will always change. There’s no stopping it, no matter how hard we try not to look. The earth has been proved to be round, marriage equality will come to pass, and it turns out that the purple patches on the dog’s head were just feather clips that happen to mimic the texture of the fur. No purple dye or holes in the skull after all.

Sally Field eventually comes around to embrace a part of her husband she had become blind to, and someone in a Stryker frame who has been staring at the ceiling can count on the fact that eventually they’ll be flipped over and have to spend time examining the floor. If we don’t voluntarily change our perspective when new evidence is revealed, it will be changed for us. That’s the nature of progress.

Time does indeed heal, but not before a thousand different emotions play out in our minds, and where the examination of the meaning of love is concerned, patience is not only a virtue but a necessity.

We’ll get there……..