‘An individual’s sexual orientation is their personal choice’

There is no consensus among scientists about the exact reasons that an individual develops a heterosexual, bisexual, gay or lesbian orientation. Although much research has examined the possible genetic, hormonal, developmental, social and cultural influences on it, no findings have emerged that permit scientists to conclude that sexual orientation is determined by any particular factor or factors

‘An individual’s sexual orientation is their personal choice’
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Homosexuality has existed since ancient times. It has been admired as well as condemned throughout recorded history, depending on the culture in which it existed and the form that it took.

  • Functionality of a person is not connected to his/her sexual orientation. Thus, the homosexual/lesbian could very well be mentally sound, emotionally stable, intelligent, sharp, talented, efficient, hard-working, faithful, trustworthy and socially well-adjusted like the rest of the (non-homosexual) population.
  • As such, irrespective of one’s sexual orientation, each individual deserves to be unconditionally accepted and respected as equals in the human society.

Also, there are significant numbers of homosexuals who avoid anal sex and even oral sex and still enjoy intimacy in their loving relationship. Any sexual activity is strictly a matter of personal choice, but should be with ‘genuine’ mutual consent.

‘An individual’s sexual orientation is their personal choice’
Prof Dr Rajan B Bhonsle

While it is true that as a society we need to learn to accept all ‘persons’ with equal human rights irrespective of their choices, it is equally true that we reserve the right to reject certain ‘behaviours’ that are injurious to the health of those persons or others connected to them.

Those choosing to be in loving same-sex relationships are no less human, and do not deserve any less respect, than anyone else. Talking in condescending terms to them or about them, or mollifying/placating them, both, reinforce a discriminatory attitude towards them.

Therefore, an equal human approach must be adopted by the moral keepers of our society and by the law of our land.

All human beings have equal worth and therefore, whether heterosexual or homosexual, everyone has the right to live with human dignity.

The author is a senior consultant in sexual medicine and a counsellor from Mumbai