three pairs of lovers with space

HOMOSEXUALITY AND MALE IDENTITY IN DENMARK, 1986

 

The following is from the “Discussions” section of Forbrydelse uden offer, a Danish psychologists’ study of people involved in adult/child liaisons, mostly Greek love ones, edited by the “Trobriands” collective of authors, published in 1986 and translated from the Danish by Dr. E. Brongersma in 1992 as Crime without Victims.[1]

 

Homosexuality and Male Identity

By far the majority of sexual relationships between children and adults are homosexual ones (but please don't ask for statistics!). Children who have come into contact with a homosexual child-lover will at a certain point wonder “am I also gay”? This in no way needs to be the case.

The foundation of sexual identity is laid in the first years of a child's life. Already by the age of two, sexual tendencies will, in most cases, be fixed.

In general boys need an adult male as a role model to identify with. In our culture male identification for boys is considered to be a priority in the socialization process.

However, actual physical contact between men and boys is restricted to hardy tusslings, a clap on the shoulder, a boxing blow, a quick and violent pulling of the hair and such. Affectionate caressing is not considered “manly”. A boy likes to look at a man's muscles and, although the adult male can permit himself to enjoy the boy's desire to emulate him in the area of “muscles”, anything relating to the erotic areas of the body is taboo. Here, the boy has no opportunity for role identification. He learns, rather, to develop his fear of sexuality and, in particular, homosexuality (homophobia).

Many boys are erotically attracted to their adult male role models, with the attraction becoming stronger upon the approach of puberty. Unfortunately, the majority of teachers, psychologists, politicians and parents refuse to recognise this need and attempt (very often successfully) to suppress these erotic desires, offering neither explanation nor justification.

Upbringing is perhaps the best example of this process, as most parents raise children in the manner they themselves were raised. Children learn not so much from the words of adults as from their behaviour, their way of living together and of relating to others.

Many enter adulthood highly homophobic. A few fortunate ones learn at this early age to accept their homosexual tendencies.

Gays generally agree that what they missed most during this difficult period of transition from childhood to adulthood was recognition of their sexual identity and the possibility of sexually identifying with other adults. While still children, they had no opportunity to discuss homosexuality with anyone. Homosexuals were invisible. The homosexuals in their family or in their wider circle of friends and acquaintances never disclosed their true sexual proclivities. The pubescent gay could only identify with heterosexuals. Nevertheless, they were gay.

Most knew they were different in some way. Many thought they were alone in their difference.

It is typical that gays who come out later in life have experienced many long, troublesome problems with identity, while gays who by puberty had already recognised their homosexuality have often had an easier existence. Characteristically, most gays at the start of their lives as homosexuals have had close, intimate relations with more experienced men.

Boys learn about the way men behave towards women in the home, from movies, from books and in the street. They have not the slightest idea, or only a very vague one, of how gay adults relate. And what they do learn (from books, movies, etc.) is usually distorted. This leads to a fundamental uncertainty which often lasts for years.

Many boys, not only gay boys, reject their fathers as male ideal at puberty. Boys of this age are looking for male models, models with whom they can identify and, most of all, in whom they can confide. They need to know that a man can be kind, and can be pleasant company. Physical intimacy creates the deepest familiarity, trust, and confidence in a man's body. And a boy's body will one day become a man's body.

Boys have a need to experience the certainty that there is somebody who likes them, especially during puberty, a time when they are generally dissatisfied with themselves. They have a need for appreciation and respect at this period of mental and physical change. Love and admiration instils personal strength.

They also need to be accepted into the adult world sexually. And they need the companionship of peers for comparison and competition. They need the total spectrum.

Boys learn how to relate to the things they experience from their adult lovers - everything from playing chess and washing dishes to living with others and having sex.

Not every boy in a paedophile relationship is looking for a gay identity. Most of them will later live an ordinary heterosexual life, raise a family and live harmoniously in it. Those boys who are gay will gain experience from the relationship, which will help them cope with an adult gay life.

Some people may form the impression that the foregoing considerations confirm the elsewhere rejected “seduction theory”, the proposition that boys can be seduced into becoming homosexuals.

In some cases it may prove possible to seduce a person into a single atypical sexual experience. However, if this experience is not pleasing it will remain an isolated one. No one is likely to voluntarily repeat an experience which he has found to be distasteful or unpleasant.

Thousands of homosexuals have been seduced into having heterosexual experiences. Even more have been forced into heterosexual relationships, but that has never diminished the individual's homosexual impulses.

You cannot seduce a person into acquiring a certain kind of sexuality, but you can, by seduction, help each other to acquire new insights.

 

[1] Published by Global Academic Publishers, Amsterdam in 1993.

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