23 January 2007

That's just NOT the way it is. Tell me it isn't...?

I moved to Oslo from Lofoten just after secondary school, when I was 18. The first real friend I made down here was I. We started singing in the same choir when she was 16, and we were best buddies in no time (none of us really fit in the choir of long-haired blondes from posh families). We hung out most of the time, although I won't blame her - or at least not solely her... - for me failing my first university exam... ;)

She talked to me about it when she thought she might be gay, I was the first one she told when she was sure... I was there when she told her parents, her brother and sister, and her grandparents. At different times... [Her mum probably thought I was of the same persuasion - once I'd stopped by wearing a dress (a rare occasion indeed, must have been on my way to something really formal...), she'd asked my friend if I was a transvestite... A dictionary would probably have been a good investment :) But I digress...]

All the while she was going through all of these phases, the insecurity, the first boyfriend, the first crush (not the boy...), the realisation and then, not least, the having to tell everyone -- I was just SO happy it wasn't me. I was so relieved I wasn't the one calling my old, blissfully ignorant granddad and shattering his world just a little. It was easy for me to be there for her, I felt I didn't have a single concern in life, whilst she had so many.

And I never for one single moment reflected that she had wanted this to happen.

... Now, I travelled with a friend to work the other day. We travel together quite a lot, and we've got kids at the same school, other than that we don't really "hang out". He's - up to now - seemed a perfectly irrational, marvellously insane and fun person to be with. I was also under the illusion he was quite intelligent. Somehow, though, we got talking about gays, and he said offhand that it wasn't his concern, and people should do as they please, but he'd never believe that this kind of thing was natural.

Hmm? Sorry?? Did I miss the irony??? But no, that was his idea of reality. And he said the only thing he felt was sad about this, was that some people would go through their whole lives, pretending to be something they really weren't. I totally agreed to that -- but for very different reasons!

So, this bright guy, hitherto proven quite liberal, and definitely no religious fanatic, told me that he thought "these people" had turned out like that by some influence or other, and by choice.

I was flabbergasted. I still am. Does this really happen? I thought it was just the ignoramuses!

My friend is still convinced she's gay, anyway... And has finally settled down with her girl, and their son, and all is well with our world...


Devil Mood said...

People have the strangest conceptions of homossexuality...Not so long ago, it was considered a psychiatric disease so...it's a slow thing the social concept.

Chloe said...

oh my god, what an ignorant fool.
What i know is this: ignorance is not a "natural" state of being.

Merujo said...

I don't think choice really comes into the equation with sexual orientation. And I've never been able to figure out why that bothers some people.

I'm looking forward (if I can get the $$ together) to flying to Germany to celebrate my brother's marriage to his partner of 30+ years later this year. What a great day that will be!

kimananda said...

I have never seen the logic in that argument. Why should it be seen as choice to whom people are attractive or with whom people fall in love? Just because it isn't the same as who we would have chosen? I've never 'chosen' this, and the idea that it is a conscious choice for one segment of the population, when it surely isn't for the rest, is just counter-intuitive.

Børge Skråmestø said...

But what if being gay was something you chose. Would it be more wrong then?

Scholiast said...

First of all, being gay couldn't be "more" wrong, because it isn't wrong to start with. (Like sugar can't be "more" sour...)

I guess, if you believe all men are created heterosexual, it may seem wrong to choose otherwise. Likewise, if you believe we're all created with no preference, it'd be wrong not to choose anything.. Meanwhile, I believe all men are created equal, but not identical. And not to be able to or allowed to love whomever one wants - whether it's choice or biology ;) - that can't be right..