Lesbian by Choice There are many labels, names and categories that have been assigned or given to lesbians. What is “lesbian”? Is it a certain type of woman? Does one lesbian have an identical feature or character as another lesbian? Does a lesbian have something extra or something missing from heterosexual women? This notion that we can classify a human being by their sexual preference is absolutely ludicrous and unsubstantiated! Women are just that, women. Sexual attraction to humans, be it the same sex or not, is not a concrete science that can allow society to label women. The choice of heterosexuality may not truly be a choice. In a recent survey of women, 57% stated that heterosexuality was not something that was considered and then chosen.
For these women, there was no decision to be made regarding their sexual preference (Marrow, 1997). This is an interesting figure when you consider of those above women, some admitted to having sexual encounters with other women. I believe the choice is heavily tied to our culture, family values, and surroundings. If all of the fish are swimming upstream, why would you want to go against your group and swim downstream? Within the lesbian community, Ponse (1978) makes reference to two groups. There are many lesbians that claim to have been “born” lesbian. To expand on this subject, one would say these women never questioned their sexual attraction.
From day one, they were attracted to other women. Although this is referred to as a primary lesbian, I dont believe it alleviates any of the stigmas or gives any more comfort or ease to the woman. The elective lesbian is seen as having “elected” to be lesbian. These are women who have experienced heterosexual relations and have decided that they prefer the same sex. This may appear as a choice, but it is far from that. The environment or family setting may have driven these women to repress their true desires out of fear of rejection.
They may also simply be confused and needed to try one way to better understand the other way (Golden, 1999). Among lesbian relationships, we find the data to be similar to heterosexual women. This makes sense and gives more bearing to the thought that women are women. Lesbian couples, like their heterosexual couples, prefer monogamous relationships when in a deep and caring relationship. Lesbian couples appear to want and most importantly, expect the same things from a relationship as a heterosexual woman (Garnets, 2000).
Commitment, support, and family values. There are those that will claim lesbian couples cannot possibly have or want family values since they are not themselves a true family. This is a comical statement to me when we consider it is men who have defined “family values” throughout the years. It is obvious that there are differing opinions regarding lesbians. Their life style, their beliefs and their choices have all been analyzed, scrutinized and classified, but to the result of what? Does a womans sexual preference affect anyone but that person? Then why is our society so intent on labeling, understanding and discriminating against lesbians? Could it be that anger is a concealment of personal repressed sexual preferences? The time has come for humans to act like humans and treat our species the same, regardless of sexual preference. After all, sexual preference does not impact intellect levels, work ethics, or honesty in a person.
I believe those traits are more important to understand then why a woman wants to be with another woman.