How JustAnswer Works:

  • Ask an Expert
    Experts are full of valuable knowledge and are ready to help with any question. Credentials confirmed by a Fortune 500 verification firm.
  • Get a Professional Answer
    Via email, text message, or notification as you wait on our site.
    Ask follow up questions if you need to.
  • 100% Satisfaction Guarantee
    Rate the answer you receive.

Ask Arundhati Your Own Question

Arundhati
Arundhati, Counselor & Psychotherapist
Category: Mental Health
Satisfied Customers: 256
Experience:  Licensed psychotherapist, Published Wellness Author
41101243
Type Your Mental Health Question Here...
Arundhati is online now
A new question is answered every 9 seconds

I have been tackling with a question about my sexuality. I

Resolved Question:

I have been tackling with a question about my sexuality. I was wondering if you could help?

I an 24 years old now. In the early years of puberty I distinctly remember being sexually attracted to girls. As the time progressed, I became more and more attracted to guys. At present I feel a strong attraction for guys and almost non for girls. I have been reading about the origins of sexual orientation and most of the articles nail it to either genetic predispositions or prenatal conditions or some events at a young age. Also most of the articles seem to imply that sexual orientations cant change. I am disturbed by this notion as my orientation changed over the years. I am confused whether I am gay man or a straight man with a confused psyche. A little before and during the time my orientation changed I can recall that my father grew distant from me. He grew more busy with his work and he passed away when I was 14. Is my attraction towards guys a sign of some childhood issues? I always fear if that is so, will I be able to have a long and healthy relationship with a man?

I am looking for a psychoanalytic explanation for the change in my orientation. Is there truth in the Freudian theory that one can turn out to be gay if one has a distant father and a over protective mother? I have been also grappling with the issue of internalized homophobia. I may be afflicted with it as I do not find it aligned with my spirituality or my Hindu faith. What would be the evolutionary or divine purpose of me being gay? Are there any good readings on this aspect? I am especially not comfortable with the image of me in an anal intercourse, though I do not have problems watching such porn (partly coz its very glamorized with waxed actors and stuff). Is it fine for a healthy gay man to dislike anal intercourse and feel its unclean and dirty? How would i ever have a relationship with a man with so many things keeping me back?

I ll be grateful of you could help me clarify my doubts.

Thanks

-Samit
Submitted: 3 years ago.
Category: Mental Health
Expert:  Arundhati replied 3 years ago.
Samit,

Thank you for writing in to Just Answer.

It sounds to me like you've already done quite a bit of reading around this and you raised some excellent questions.

First of all, what you are experiencing is not atypical. It also does not conclusively indicate that you are homosexual. Often times, this kind of questioning of your sexual orientation can be a temporary phase, a curiosity phase. This kind of situation is most often faced by those who experience a strong internal aversion to or conflict around homosexuality. Due to their internal conflict they often find themselves attracted to the very thing they want to avoid. So an effective solution would be to get to the heart of what you're experiencing and to uncover where it is coming from. One of the best ways to do that is through therapy. Either psychotherapy or cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT) can be very effective.

Psychoanalytic theory does that say unresolved past conflicts can lead to identifying with the same sex parent however not all of those who encounter unresolved conflicts will become gay or lesbian so I think the solution lies in uncovering the particular reasons, set of circumstances and issues that might have led you onto this path. As mentioned above, this can be best done with a therapist.

Moreover, there is often a small but significant difference between being attracted to the same sex and taking the steps to date and enter a relationship with the same sex. This means that were you to push yourself towards taking actual action steps towards a same sex relationship you might find that you are not really interested in having one. And even if you did have childhood issues it does not mean you cannot have a long and healthy relationship with a man.

I have not come across Hindu faith based readings on homosexuality and how it fits in with the ideals of Hinduism but I can tell you this - based on my over 15 years of readings on eastern spiritual principles - that a core purpose of our life is self-realization. And acknowledging and accepting our sexual preferences is a big step towards accepting who we are and therefore it is a step forward on the path to self-realization.

I hope that helped to provide you with some perspective.

Please do let me know if you have further questions/thoughts.

Warm regards,

Arundhati
Customer: replied 3 years ago.
Thanks for the answer. It is very different from what I usually hear from counselors that I am gay and probably internally homophobic. It seems you are suggesting that I am not gay and have some unresolved issues to work out. I guess what i wanted to know very badly is that is it common to start with a straight orientation and end up with a gay one in the natural course of events, given that origins of sexuality and orientation are widely considered to by innate? In either case of yes or no, what would be the psychoanalytic explanation for it?

Also I wanted to know if my attraction towards men stems from some past issues, would resolving them change my orientation again? I have consciously not dated till now and would want to start dating soon. I had been planning about meeting other gay men this summer, but your answer kind of puts me back into confusion. Also were I to push my self into a relationship with a man and I find that I am not interested in it, does it mean that I am not gay? I mean to ask is that is the proof of the pudding in tasting it and if the best way to find out I am gay or not is to start dating someone and take it from there? I do not have access to any psychotherapist or CBT where I live and don't think it would be affordable for me as I am a student. I was hoping to get a psychoanalysis of my situation at this forum.

You did side step my questions on dislike and fear of actual intercourse, and also the questions on the evolutionary or theological explanation of being gay. I am not sure if they are relevant in terms of my psyche and if you would be comfortable answering them.

-Samit
Expert:  Arundhati replied 3 years ago.
Hi Samit,

Thank you for your reply.

Yes, it is common to start with a straight orientation and then start questioning your orientation and eventually become gay or lesbian. So the answer to your question is "Yes". While the psychoanalytic explanation for it is that there are unresolved conflicts in the past or that the client had a dominant opposite sex parent - these are not adequate psychoanalytic explanations but only loose frameworks. There are no concrete standalone psychoanalytic theories for homosexuality - each case is different and a psychoanalytic therapist would work with the client to determine what the core issues leading to these homosexual feelings might be.

I'm sorry that my reply only further confused you. It was simply meant to help you understand that being in the 'questioning' phase does not necessarily mean that you are gay. I have worked with many clients who stayed in the questioning phase but when they actually started dating men or having a relationship with one they realized that they were not gay. So yes, to answer your question, the proof of the pudding lies in tasting it so the best way to see where your orientation lies would be to start dating guys and take it from there.

If you are a student you should be able to access your university's counseling center at very nominal rates or for free. I would encourage you to look into that.

Your fears or dislike of anal intercourse could be just that - a fear which will dissolve when you actually start dating or enter into a sexual relationship with the same sex. They could be indicative of internal conflicts/unresolved issues/repressed feelings - but these can only be uncovered through work with a therapist.

I already put forth my theological/spiritual explanation - which is self-realization is commonly regarded as the highest pursuit that a person can engage in. And openly pursuing your sexual orientation preferences means walking on the path of self-realization. Also Hinduism per se does not forbid homosexuality - it strongly encourages romantic love and a gay relationship is a romantic relationship.

I hope this answers all your questions.

Please click on the "Accept" button as experts are not credited for their time or service otherwise. You are welcome to continue this discussion after you have clicked on the "Accept" button.

Kind Regards,

Arundhati
Arundhati, Counselor & Psychotherapist
Category: Mental Health
Satisfied Customers: 256
Experience: Licensed psychotherapist, Published Wellness Author
Arundhati and 2 other Mental Health Specialists are ready to help you

JustAnswer in the News:

 
 
 
Ask-a-doc Web sites: If you've got a quick question, you can try to get an answer from sites that say they have various specialists on hand to give quick answers... Justanswer.com.
JustAnswer.com...has seen a spike since October in legal questions from readers about layoffs, unemployment and severance.
Web sites like justanswer.com/legal
...leave nothing to chance.
Traffic on JustAnswer rose 14 percent...and had nearly 400,000 page views in 30 days...inquiries related to stress, high blood pressure, drinking and heart pain jumped 33 percent.
Tory Johnson, GMA Workplace Contributor, discusses work-from-home jobs, such as JustAnswer in which verified Experts answer people’s questions.
I will tell you that...the things you have to go through to be an Expert are quite rigorous.
 
 
 

What Customers are Saying:

 
 
 
  • I can go as far as to say it could have resulted in saving my sons life and our entire family now knows what bipolar is and how to assist and understand my most wonderful son, brother and friend to all who loves him dearly. Thank you very much Corrie Moll Pretoria, South Africa
< Last | Next >
  • I can go as far as to say it could have resulted in saving my sons life and our entire family now knows what bipolar is and how to assist and understand my most wonderful son, brother and friend to all who loves him dearly. Thank you very much Corrie Moll Pretoria, South Africa
  • I thank-you so much! It really helped to have this information and confirmation. We will watch her carefully and get her in for the examination and US right away if things do not improve. God bless you as well! Claudia Albuquerque, NM
  • Outstanding response time less than 6 minutes. Answered the question professionally and with a great deal of compassion. Kevin Beaverton, OR
  • Suggested diagnosis was what I hoped and will take this info to my doctor's appointment next week.
    I feel better already! Thank you.
    Elanor Tracy, CA
  • Thank you to the Physician who answered my question today. The answer was far more informative than what I got from the Physicians I saw in person for my problem. Julie Lockesburg, AR
  • You have been more help than you know. I seriously don't know what my sisters situation would be today if you had not gone above and beyond just answering my questions. John and Stefanie Tucson, AZ
  • I have been dealing with an extremely serious health crisis for over three years, and one your physicians asked me more questions, gave me more answers and encouragement than a dozen different doctors who have been treating me!! Janet V Phoenix, AZ
 
 
 

Meet The Experts:

 
 
 
  • Dr. Keane

    Therapist

    Satisfied Customers:

    1262
    Clinical Psychology PhD, Licensed Professional Counselor with experience in marriage/family, teens and child psychology.
< Last | Next >
  • http://ww2.justanswer.com/uploads/DR/Dr.Keane/2013-8-20_204325_drkeane.64x64.jpg Dr. Keane's Avatar

    Dr. Keane

    Therapist

    Satisfied Customers:

    1262
    Clinical Psychology PhD, Licensed Professional Counselor with experience in marriage/family, teens and child psychology.
  • http://ww2.justanswer.com/uploads/RE/resolutions66/2011-1-17_05728_IMG8202smilingeditedforJustAnswer.64x64.jpg Elliott, LPCC, NCC's Avatar

    Elliott, LPCC, NCC

    Psychotherapist

    Satisfied Customers:

    5024
    35 years of experience as a Licensed Professional Clinical Counselor, National Certified Counselor and a college professor.
  • http://ww2.justanswer.com/uploads/formybunch/2010-12-06_191055_img_0975.jpg Kate McCoy, M.Ed, NBCC, LPC's Avatar

    Kate McCoy, M.Ed, NBCC, LPC

    Therapist

    Satisfied Customers:

    3733
    Over 20 years experience specializing in anxiety, depression, drug and alcohol, and relationship issues.
  • http://ww2.justanswer.com/uploads/DR/DrAkiraOlsen/2012-2-20_746_AkiraADpicmain.64x64.jpg Dr. Olsen's Avatar

    Dr. Olsen

    Psychologist

    Satisfied Customers:

    2336
    PsyD Psychologist
  • http://ww2.justanswer.com/uploads/norriem/2009-5-27_134249_nm.jpg Norman M.'s Avatar

    Norman M.

    Psychotherapist

    Satisfied Customers:

    2193
    UK trained in hypnotherapy, counselling and psychotherapy and have been in private practice. ADHP(NC), DEHP(NC), UKCP Registered and ECP.
  • http://ww2.justanswer.com/uploads/PsychologyProf/2010-07-15_171248_logos060400409.jpg Dr. Michael's Avatar

    Dr. Michael

    Psychologist

    Satisfied Customers:

    2177
    Licensed Ph.D. Clinical Health Psychology with 30 years of experience in private practive and as a clinical psychology university professor.
  • http://ww2.justanswer.com/uploads/KURTEMMERLING/2010-07-23_215531_just_ask_picture1.jpg Steven Olsen's Avatar

    Steven Olsen

    Therapist

    Satisfied Customers:

    1727
    More than twenty years of expertise in counseling, psychological diagnosis and education
 
 
 
Chat Now With A Mental Health Professional
Arundhati
Arundhati
Practicing Psychotherapist
256 Satisfied Customers
Licensed psychotherapist, Published Wellness Author