Monday, April 25, 2011

Could Love Be a Sexual Orientation?

During some of my curious thoughts, I stumbled across what might be a mysterious question. I think that some people might be confused by the question to the point of dismissing the question as meaningless. However, it is a question that I personally find legitimate.

Could love be a sexual orientation? To elaborate, regularly people love a subset of those who they are sexually attracted to. For example, a straight man would find it difficult to fall in love with another man, simply because they are not sexually attracted to men. Same logic applies to all monosexual people (ie. heterosexual/homosexual). In this case, we find that sexual attraction or orientation is independent of love. On the other hand, love seems to be conditioned and controlled by sexual orientation. Simply put, sexual orientation leads and love follows.

The question is: Is this something that is definite for all human beings?! Is conceivable that at least for some people love leads and sexual attraction/orientation follows?!

Actually, my question is far more complicated than that, but because I cannot put words to explain my thoughts I'll leave it at this; Maybe I'll elaborate when I sort out my thoughts on the topic. The very thought of this question caused me lots of confusion!!

Just to avoid any possible confusion, this post does not address bisexuality. For the case of bisexual people, they have a sexual attraction to both sexes, which enables them to love people of both sexes. However, for the purposes of this post -and as far as I understand bisexuality- love is still in a very real sense conditioned by sexual orientation in that case.

Update: Looking around the internet, I found the type of sexuality that mostly resembles what I had in mind when I made this post. It is called Demisexuality. It does not exactly reflect my idea, but it's very similar in many aspects.

Demisexuality is considered to fall under the general category of asexuality. Demisexuals don't feel sexual attraction to people of either sex, until they form a strong emotional connection with them. However, what I have in mind generally falls under sexuality, rather than asexuality. However, the turn-ons and turn-offs are more controlled by personality cues, rather than physical appearance cues.


Rain said...

I've never looked at it that way,interesting,and what is your question?
I personally think that sex is far more ancient thing for humans than love,as a race,our first concern was to mate and reproduce not to get to know each other well
Not long ago and even currently marriage is for many people all about finding a mate and settling down not's the fisrt human instinct,the purpose here isn't about feelings...feelings were invented long after,love is like this new fashion that didn't appear till know to smoothen the process since we're a far more sophisticated race than animals,but our first needs and instincts remain the same,and love is not a priority in our existence,that's why love cannot be a sexual orientation because at the end of the day we're not really looking for love are we?

bambam said...

What you are talking about is the fluidity of sexual orientation... like is sexual orientation static or does it change and if it changes is love or sexual attraction an impetus. Actually if i remember correctly there is some evidence of that in females but not so much in men.

Devil's Mind said...

Rain, you are right, as far as evolution goes love came later into the equation. However, things do change overtime; anomalies also happen.

Let's take the relationship between sexual desire and reproduction. Sexual desire exists primarily to give people incentive to reproduce. However, sexual desire can become independent of reproduction, as in the case of homosexuality. So, while sexual desire original purpose is reproduction, it can evolve to become something that is an end in and of itself.

So is it at least plausible that love can evolve to become an end in and of itself?! And could it be the case that this is already happening?!

bambam, that is interesting. Could you possibly remember where you read this?! Or how the study was conducted to make this inference?!

Rain said...

Ok but this will be really creepy cause some people will be like" I love that 10 year old and that's my sexual orientation and no one can stop me!" you see it's not just about homosexuality or bisexuality,this will create a great deal of controversy and confusion because you need to set limits here and you can't do that because the point of this is about feelings and you can't set limits to feelings you can only set limits to your brain,so I sure hope that won't happen cause frankly I can barely live with the idea of homosexuality in the world(with all due respect to them) let alone an entirely open new orientation that only follows feelings

I don't trust feelings,feelings suck

Devil's Mind said...

There are already people who are attracted to 10-years old; They are called pedophiles! I don't think that using emotions to direct your sexuality would make such problems grow beyond what is already existing.

As far as pedophilia goes, people do need to have the maturity to control their actions and not hurt others, especially children. This of course generalizes to all types of behaviors.

Sure emotions/feelings suck if you let them run amok without any form of self-discipline or self-control. However, emotions are a great tool. Maybe I should one day write a post about the importance of emotions in our life.

However, saying that you don't trust feelings/emotions is not reasonable, and it really goes to the level of absurdity. We use emotions in every aspect of our life... We kind of have to trust our emotions simply because we have no other choice!!

Rain said...

Yeah there are already people who do that but they don't have any excuses to do it
and you're talking as if we were living in a pink world with perfect smiley people all around us!yeah sure everyone will have restraints and no one will use this "theory" for his own sick purposes and no one will misunderstand it!
They'll ALL have the maturity to control their actions!!
Besides you're contradicting yourself here,if love really were your sexual orientation you wouldn't have to use your brain because this is about feelings and feelings only,you say love is enough for us to be with the one we love and then you say no we need to think about it and have restraints,so at the end of the day they'll always be restraints and this is not just about pedophilia aslan I wasn't talking about it in particular I was mentioning an example
For example if I love a priest I should be with him?but wait I should have the enough maturity to know this is impossible and would only lead to bad things,so love doesn't matter anymore thus your theory doesn't work
I'm not saying emotions are not important but the post suggested they'd be our guide in our sexual relations or am I mistaken?but now you're saying we should put restraints,this is why I'm saying this is never gonna work,and this is why I'm saying I don't trust feelings,and I didn't mean it on all aspects of life of course,I just don't like to blindly follow them around because I know they fade away sooner or later

Oh one more thing makes me think this isn't gonna fades away,while instincts stay the same..

Devil's Mind said...

First of all, I want to be clear on one point. My original post addresses the existence of such a phenomenon, rather than the morality or value of such an orientation. For example, we might disagree on whether or not homosexuality is a good thing, but we still agree that it does exist, and that it is possible for some humans to posses this orientation.

I am asking whether or not the phenomenon is possible without suggesting it is a good or bad thing. However, I am happy to address the issues that you raised about it.

"For example if I love a priest I should be with him?" - People don't have sex with everyone they are attracted to, and don't always pursue love when they harbor some feelings. I wouldn't presume a love-sexual to be much different in this regard.

Actually, most of your criticisms apply to all sexualities be it homo/hetero/bi.

Loving someone is a feeling, being sexually attracted to someone is a feeling, being horny is a feeling, intimacy is a feeling.... Is being guided by love more problematic than being guided by lust?! Maybe equally problematic, but more problematic?!

"love fades away,while instincts stay the same.." - Well, actually it is possible to be sexually attracted to someone one day, and not be sexually attracted the next!

Devil's Mind said...

"and you're talking as if we were living in a pink world with perfect smiley people all around us!" - Not really, but it seems that you somehow are suggesting that the rules of morality change depending on orientation.

For example, raping people is a bad thing. And it is equally bad whether a hetero/homo/bisexual did it. It would also be just as bad for a love-sexual to do it. I disagree with the view that love-sexuality would somehow override the moral codes that apply to other orientations.

"I'm not saying emotions are not important but the post suggested they'd be our guide in our sexual relations or am I mistaken?" - That's right. But I mention this as an orientation rather than a choice. In other words, the person is not making a conscious effort to prioritize personality over physicality, but rather having an innate orientation to do so. In the same sense that homosexuality is an orientation rather than a choice.