Sexual orientation can be different in each person, this is because it is integrated by attraction not only sexual but also emotional, romantic and affective. In addition, it does not depend on other sexual components such as biological sex or the sexual identity of the person. Orientation refers to feelings and also to the concept that one has of oneself, which means that people do not always express their orientation by keeping private.

There is a diverse variety of sexual orientations so far recognized by the international medical community, however some others are poorly understood. Heterosexuality is usually mentioned because it is still the typology with the highest number of cases, but also homosexuality of both men and women has gained more visibility compared to past times.

Homosexuality, like other types of sexual orientations, has different theories regarding its origins. The scientific community agrees that sexual orientation is the result of the combination of biological, personal, cognitive factors and also of the influences coming from the environment. Consequently, a person’s sexual orientation is manifested from an early age, it is important to recognize all the reasons that can be part of a person’s sexual development.

Sexual orientation is considered not a conscious choice. Considering that the first sexual experiences occur without orientation or influences from previous experiences, the person usually guides himself according to his own feelings. To a large extent psychological factors intervene during the stage of identification of one’s sexuality . 

What is homosexuality? 

Homosexuality is a type of sexual orientation that is characterized by showing physical, emotional, affective and sexual attraction towards another person who belongs to the same gender. It can be linked to both men and women equally, both will express similar behaviors and feelings.

The term homosexual is more widely accepted within the medical field to refer to this characteristic of some people’s sexuality. However, from a more colloquial perspective the use of other terms is used, men are often called ” gay” and women ” lesbian” .

Previously, homosexuality was considered a mental condition classified as a disease. But eventually, with the realization of new investigations in relation to this subject, allowing to have scientific support, it was concluded that an error was being incurred. It would not be until 1937 when it would be removed from the list of mental disorders of the American Psycological Association (APA).

The term homosexuality has its origins in the publication of an anonymous pamphlet published in the year 1869, although it is generally pointed out to Karl Maria Kertbeny. The intentions of said material were focused on supporting the elimination of the laws against “sodomy” in force at that time. It was considered as a type of sexual deviation, which was even punishable by jail.

As for the causes or reasons why a part of the world population belongs to this type of sexual orientation, biological, cognitive or contextual factors can be named. Generally, the first signs of emotional and sexual attraction can be noticed by the person himself, during the course of adolescence or during the phase prior to the end of childhood.

What are their characteristics? 

The main characteristic of homosexuality is the manifestation of sexual attraction towards another person of the same gender. There are still various myths in relation to how it manifests itself, sexuality in these people shows the characteristics of each gender. This means that men continue to identify with masculinity and women with feminine sexuality; therefore men do not necessarily have to adopt feminine behaviors or vice versa .

Similarly, it is characterized by the full exercise of freedom to make choices for a partner of the same sex . Sexual compatibility is given by not only physical factors, aspects such as falling in love and the exchange of affective needs that benefit both parties are also involved.

It is important to emphasize that homosexuality does not depend on a genetic factor , from the point of view of psychology it is an unconscious choice. It is also not hereditary and does not present restrictions as to which groups of people are more likely to have this sexual orientation.

Homosexuality and the modern world

At present, some favorable changes can be observed with respect to the acceptance of this sexual condition in society. In the past, psychologists as well as psychiatrists and other mental health professionals considered this to be a mental and emotional illness or disorder. But for more than 40 years, homosexuality has not been included in this categorization of mental illnesses.

Unfortunately, there are still cases of institutions and medical personnel that provide therapies and other types of treatments that have the purpose of eliminating or changing people’s orientation. In some nations of the world six still have a negative stance with respect to people who identify as homosexuals, consequently they must suffer continuous attacks and rejection.

It is also important to mention the right that people belonging to the LGTB community can now exercise in terms of their family environments. Legally and socially, they are guaranteed all their rights to be able to adopt or also be parents through surrogates. This represents an important step towards reconciling this community with the rest of society.

According to different investigations carried out in children who are raised by homosexual parents , when making a comparison with those who have lived within family environments framed by heterosexuality; It is concluded that there are no differences in development. The social adaptation and psychological condition not know affected in any way.

In the current era, a greater appreciation and visibility of sexual diversity can be perceived Over the years, a development process has been established that has eventually led to important changes, but this has happened gradually.

Despite having a great deal of progress with regard to the integration of homosexual people, discrimination and prejudice through negative attitudes still continue to be registered. Important contributions still need to be made in relation to sex education in schools to avoid misinformation and stereotypes . This could be one of many reasons why violent situations continue to be experienced that are categorized as hate crimes.

Making people aware of what homosexuality really is will be especially important for the new generations. Greater access to the media and other information resources should be provided to clarify any doubts regarding this issue.

Homosexuality is not a disorder and it is not a problem of a mental nature. To improve coexistence at the local and global level, each community and nation must guarantee sexual rights and the freedom to exercise them. This means that any citizen can lead a normal life without being excluded.

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Alexa Clark specializes in Cognitive Behavioral Therapy. She has experience in listening and welcoming in Individual Therapy and Couples Therapy. It meets demands such as generalized anxiety, professional, love and family conflicts, stress, depression, sexual dysfunction, grief, and adolescents from 15 years of age. Over the years, She felt the need to conduct the psychotherapy sessions with subtlety since She understands that the psychologist acts as a facilitator of self-understanding and self-acceptance, valuing each person's respect, uniqueness, and acceptance.

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