A gay person is someone who has a sexual orientation that includes a romantic relationship with a man. They also include bisexuals and transgender people.
Despite the recognition of human rights by most governments, many people continue to be discriminated against on the basis of their sexuality and gender identity. They are often imprisoned or tortured for no reason other than their sexuality.
1. Sexual Orientation
A person’s sexual orientation describes their enduring physical, romantic and/or emotional attraction to people of the opposite sex or gender. Gay, lesbian and bisexual are examples of sexual orientations.
Research has demonstrated that the variance in a person’s sexual orientation is attributable to both genetic factors and environmental influences. Typically, about one third of variance is attributable to genetics.
Many children and teens begin to recognize their sexual orientation by age nine or ten, even if they don’t have a clear reason why. They may have had same-sex crushes in childhood, and may feel very different from their heterosexual peers by the time they enter adolescence.
Disclosing a person’s sexual orientation to others can be confusing and intimidating. Having support and understanding is important during this process. In the meantime, LGBTQ individuals can work to reduce prejudice and discrimination by being open about their identity. They can also examine their own belief systems for any presence of antigay stereotypes.
2. Sexual Behavior
The sexual behavior of humans consists of the diverse activities that people engage in to achieve pleasure and/or sexual satisfaction. These behaviors vary among individuals and can be related to social factors, gender, sex and culture.
There are several different types of sexual behavior: masturbation, oral-genital stimulation, penile-vaginal intercourse, and anal stimulation and intercourse. In addition to these physical practices, sexual behaviors may also include activities that arouse or attract partners, such as flirting, chatting and kissing.
In general, a person’s sexual behavior is influenced by genetic and environmental factors. Many of these factors are hereditary and many others are based on the environment, such as social pressures or cultural values.
There is no single gene that determines sexual orientation, though a recent study found five DNA markers that are more common in gay men and bisexual women. These DNA markers, however, account for less than 1% of the variation in same-sex sexual behavior and cannot be used to predict a person’s sexual orientation. Instead, hundreds or thousands of genes influence same-sex behavior, each with tiny effects.
Personality is the set of characteristics that make a person unique and distinguish him or her from others. It can be explained in two ways: first, as a set of steady, predictable differences between individuals; and second, as a set of consistent, predictable variables that explain a person’s nature.
In addition to genetics, environmental factors also play a role in the development of personality. For example, a person high in conscientiousness may be more attracted to a job or social role that requires discipline and responsibility (e.g., physician).
However, it is not always easy to determine whether or not a specific personality trait will affect someone’s sexual orientation. For example, it is not clear why a gay person might be more inclined to be aggressive or anti-social than a heterosexual person. It is also not known why a sexual minority individual might experience stigma or discrimination, even from family members.
Culture is the way of life of a group of people and includes codes of manners, dress, language, religion, art, and norms of behavior. Throughout history, cultures have differed in their attitudes towards gay people.
In Europe and the United States, the acceptance of homosexuality has been increasing in recent years. This has helped to dismantle long-held beliefs about gay people.
Despite this, many cultures still view gay behaviour as sinful. Among these are Judeo-Christian as well as Muslim cultures.
In many countries, anti-gay attitudes are a part of culture and are passed down through generations. This is particularly true of the Commonwealth, which includes the UK and Australia.