What Part Didn’t You Hear?

The other day a friend of mine and I were talking. This friend is pretty religious and I remember at one point she expressing her belief that homosexuality was caused by a demon, a bad spirit and it had to be exorcised out. She was very adamant about this belief. In denial and in an effort to stay in the closet, I didn’t correct her.

However, this newer conversation, she had spoken about a friend she had met recently. She talked about this friend lovingly and with respect. And then she said, there is only one problem, he’s gay. This friend of hers was perfect in many ways. He was described as funny and loving, however she couldn’t get past the fact that he slept with men (and that he also slept with them randomly, accumulating many one night stands).

She then asked me, “it’s environmental right?”. I told her that it was genetic. But she said “but it’s also environmental for many”. I said again, “I had learned it was genetic. I believe it’s genetic and it’s what the medical books have stated”. And then she said again, “but this guy had pain in his life, so for him it was environmental”. I then told her that the other line was beeping in and I had to take the call. I ended the call with her thinking, why would you ask me for my opinion, but then insist on finding the loop holes?

What don’t people understand?

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11 Responses to “What Part Didn’t You Hear?”

  1. Eric Says:

    People don’t want to understand. When all you have to go on in your life is faith that things have to be a certain way, your brain is affected by its “environment” as well…it becomes incapable of examining reality with anything approaching reason. When reality doesn’t conform to the faith-based idea of what reality is, there is a problem. THIS DOES NOT COMPUTE. So then they have to equivocate and pray the reality away until it fits their very small worldview.

  2. Lemuel Says:

    All such people want is affirmation that they are correct. And I suspect in such instances (and those are often on topics quite different than the one you dealt with) such people know they are wrong. They just refuse to admit it. When we do not give them the affirmation they want, they just keep going in circles. I stopped wasting time on such people long ago. You will not convince them.

  3. BruceCleveland Says:

    Eric is right…the reason being…they don’t want to understand or they don’t want to hear what goes against what they believe…

    They just want you, us, all to agree with them and vindicate their reasons…tell them they are right.

    First of all your friend makes me mad…mad as hell that she can sit there and claim to comprehend something that is beyond her reach…just because of her belief…Her belief has blinded her to anything and it won’t matter what you tell her…she will not believe it.

    I know many people who are very faithful in their religion, but are less ignorant about homosexuality than she is. Heck my ex’s parents are very religious and once they found out they had two gay sons, they were able to look beyond their faith, their belief and see that not all things are concrete and are as solid as blaming the devil or saying it’s God’s plan to rid the world of gays with AIDS, Hurricanes, Famine…or what ever else they want to blame us for.

    If it was I, I would tell her to keep her opinions to herself and not be so judgemental. Either acccept her gay friend or don’t…but don’t make up reasons for his homosexuality.

  4. deldell Says:

    Her thoughts about “nature versus nurture” are only a part of a chain of beliefs which constitute her world view. I had a pastor who would frequently say things like, “Well, if we don’t believe this, then we can’t believe that.”
    To believe that someone is created gay means that God either made a mistake or that gayness isn’t sin.
    I’ve heard people told that their heart disease had to be a result of unrepented secret sin in their life, or God would heal them.

  5. Brad Says:

    I’m glad you stuck to your guns. There is only one right answer in this debate.

  6. urspo Says:

    because people want to believe what they want to believe is true; and most of the time no amount of evidence will sway this.
    and the bottom line still is; we don’t know what ’causes’ homosexuality.

  7. somewhere joe Says:

    Give her time. Progressing from “demon-induced” to “environmental” is a tremendous step when you think about it. In fact there is a body of science that suggests that “nurture” plays a role in promoting a genetic tendency.

    People often sound more adamant than they are, in their quest to arrange their thoughts about something. I think you took the right approach – stating your position without getting overly exercised yourself. She seems to be interested in the topic and possibly questioning her own beliefs.

    She’ll meet some gays who will undermine her superstitions, and some who will tend to confirm them. It’s a long process.

  8. Jim Says:

    She sounds like she’s decided what makes sense to her already and is looking for validation. She’s allowed to have an opinion. She’s also allowed to be wrong šŸ™‚

  9. stevewhirlyworld Says:

    Lemuel said it best…b/c they want affirmation…

  10. Jason Says:

    You should have told her that the demons cause our heads to spin, and spit pea soup too!

    I agree with some of the above comments, everyone is entitled to their opinion, even when it is wrong.

  11. arkano18 Says:

    Mmm… Well, this is the first time I comment in your blog…

    I don’t know about demons or genetic, but certainly is peculiar that your friend was not open to suggestions even when she asked for ’em…

    Communication is not only get some words out of your mouth and receive some other words from some other person. There’s some understanding exercises involved. And this may be obvious for al of us, but trust me: not for everyone.

    I’ve been reading your blog a lot…
    I think it’s beautiful to share. And you are a very lucky guy, for sharing and receiving feelings, thoughts, experiences.

    Receive a great hug from the south of the world.

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