Sexual and Gender Orientation

How media, family and culture can be influential.

What is Sexual and Gender Orientation?

Not all people are heterosexual or straight. Some people are gay, lesbian, bisexual, queer, or questioning. In other words, there are many people on this planet with different sexual orientations and this is an example of sexual diversity. These terms refers to the fact that not all people have a gender identity that conforms exactly to their biological sex.

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L.G.B.T.Q.

The acronym LGBTQ is a reflection of sexual diversity within society.

L=lesbian. Refers to females whose sexually attracted towards other females.

G=Gay. Refers to males whose sexually attracted towards other males.

B=Bisexual. Refers to a male or female who is sexually attracted to both males and females.

T=Transgender and/or Transsexual. Transsexual refers to a person whose gender identity is neither exclusively female nor male and primarily the opposite of their biological sex.

Q=Queer or Questioning. Some non-heterosexual people refer to themselves as Queer because they are uncomfortable labeling themselves gay, lesbian, or bisexual. A person who is Questioning is arriving at a clearer sense of what their sexual orientation is.

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How Family can be Influential

Scientists have been closely studying sexual orientation. Many of these studies involve genetics. The study of genes, which are tiny body informing units within our cells, carry information that determines the color of your eyes, hair, and all the other qualities of your body. Your genes are passed down from your parents. If genes happen to affect sexual orientation(Possibility is high), this would be important, because it explains why some are attracted to the same sex and others are not. People believe that homosexuals choose to be gay, and therefore can also “turn off” being gay. It is not a choice. However, if scientists prove that genes can influence orientation, then people may be less likely to assume gay people choose their “lifestyle.”

How Media can be Influential

Media can very well be as influential as Culture and family and peers. All members of the LGBTQ community can be affected by the media as they are in fear of societal rejections. Though it may not explicitly show, media implies that having different sexual and identity orientation is a bad thing. Rarely there has been commercials and advertisements of two companions of the same sex. These perfume and clothing commercials, for example, only show signs of relationship among opposite sexes. Though advertisements may not openly announce it, LGBTQ members do find it quite one sided and feel pressured to try and fit the status quo of boy meets girl. Little do they know that to be gay, lesbian, or bi is complete alright and they don't need to appeal to societies eyes. People should feel free to public show their LGBTQ pride and not worry about the media and it's standards.

How Culture can be Influential

Culture and media go hand to hand. There have been many references to sexual orientation throughout history, but even with that being the case, same-sex relationships are not always accepted in many cultures and are discriminated against. This issue is still considered controversial today.One controversial aspect is whether or not same sex relationships is a choice. In some countries it is assumed that lack of availability to women is a factor for why men may be attracted to other men. However, among all cultures there are same-sex relationships even when there is not a shortage of opposite sex partners. This inconsistency has caused many to question cultural assumptions. Another issue is the assumption of male superiority that many cultures portray. Men are expected to be masculine and women feminine. Men considered less masculine are seen as being less manly, while women who seem less feminine are assumed to be trying to take over the man’s masculinity. With thsinbeing said, many men and women fear the discrimnatory remarks they may recieve if openly defying the cultural norm.

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