Boys, Men and sexuality – cont..

The purpose of this paper is to describe and make sense of the period of life roughly until adolescence, of those men whose erotic objects, in phantasy and/or in sexual life, are other men. The conceptual category of “homosexual boyhood” has been termed by Corbett  (Corbett 1998) and will be used in the present work.

Pre-homosexual is another term that will appear in the next pages (Friedman 1988). It is understood that the term “pre-homosexual” refers to boys who have not developed, or more accurately, have not yet expressed the particular nature of their sexuality in their behaviour. It is supposed that their sexual desire will be orientated towards people of the same sex. Recollections of early life, memories in rudimentary form, incidents and experiences, in retrospect, can be mirrors to reflect the first manifestations of a particular sexual orientation (appendix).

The term pre-heterosexual will be used in a similar context. This is done for clarity and for simplicity’s sake.

There is hardly any theory that takes into account the plight of the pre-homosexual boy in his effort to integrate his homoerotic feelings and longings when these are met with hostility and at best with great ambivalence, in the environment he lives whether by the family or society.

One can rarely find in the literature an account of the particular challenges and conflicts that a pre-homosexual boy faces in his establishment of a homosexual orientation without pathologising his experience to some degree. At best, his development is looked upon with suspicion. A few works that give a different account are still peripheral to the main body of psychoanalytic literature. What we get is a lot of information about the developmental course of boys with a heterosexual future. Up to date few voices from an analytic point of view give an account of homosexuality other than a sexual deviation from the norm.

Psychological studies have a lot to say about the characteristics of pre-homosexual boys whereas psychoanalytic discourse offers a number of explanations for those characteristics. What they both miss out is the experience of the boy who is going to develop as a homosexual man. And this is where the present work aims to step in.




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