Sex, Gender, Orientation, and the Role of Genetics

When I am suddenly hopping from one blog to another because the comment that I posted feels too important to not share, it’s time to switch from commenting to posting. I am going to flesh out the original comment to contain a bit more background into the situation, and link to the two posts that inspired me to write and rewrite this.

Initially, I stumbled on a post titled Is Kink Genetic? that I felt I had to comment on, because it’s a question I have grappled with since I realized that I was, well, not just kink, but a BDSM lifestyler. BDSM is more my sexual orientation than bisexual or pansexual is, and I found myself expressing a lot more openly about personal things than I intended to.

Is Kink Genetic? I’ve often wondered about this myself. My father was abhorred by my BDSM lifestyle, at least outwardly, though he still accepted me begrudgingly. After he passed away, his sister told me that he had confided in her (one of the few people he felt comfortable being truthful with), that he struggled with dark sexual thoughts and urges, though he refused to elaborate.

Looking at his choice in girlfriends after leaving my mom, I was struck by how it seemed he wanted a submissive more than a girlfriend, despite his stated views on my lifestyle.

I don’t remember when kink began for me, in terms of fantasy and day dream, but I was very young. I thought I had invented it until I was 15, as I was very sheltered and had never heard of S&M before or anything like it. I thought I was a freak.

Let me repeat that: I thought I had invented BDSM. And due to the strictness of my religious upbringing, I didn’t even consider asking. The thought was just too horrific. I was ashamed of who I was on such a fundamental level that I assumed I was not only evil but uniquely evil, flawed in some inherent way that would cause me to imagine and day dream about such things. For about half of my lifetime, until the day I first heard the term, I thought I was a walking abomination. I thought I deserved death, hell, all of it, worse than it, something, because I thought I was literally a freak of nature.

By about age 12 I knew that I liked girls as well as boys, though I didn’t accept the term bisexual until 3 years later, and never fully embraced it comfortably. I had bisexual friends, who were attracted to males and females, but it wasn’t like that for me. I was attracted to people, and what was between their legs was pretty much irrelevant to me, particularly in those years when I was too young to act on much of it anyway. It was a distinction that bothered me subconsciously for many years. I also felt that I was something like trans, but not… quite. I felt both male and female, but I didn’t feel uncomfortable in my body or as if I had been born as the wrong gender. I went through spells of wearing guy clothes, but no one really noticed or said anything about it if they did. I didn’t even hear the term multigendered until I was an adult, and finally, I knew how to describe what I had felt all those years.

Fast forward a bit through years of education, self acceptance, and a lot of self doubt and re-learning. I’m a lifestyle Dominant (meaning I am Dominant in my every day life, outside the bedroom, over my submissive), but I play as both a bottom and a top, a sadist and a masochist, a Master and a slave. The adventures this lifestyle opened me up to gave me insight into myself I had never thought possible. I am not a Domme or a Dominatrix, I am a Dominant. An alpha. I take care of those in my charge, I protect them, fight for them, and fight to help them be more than they were before. I take pride in that.

Back to the genetic heritage.

My son knows that I am bisexual (some kids at school called him gay, he didn’t know what it meant, but he was very hurt, and I felt it important to stress that even if it were true, it was nothing to be ashamed of). It seemed hypocritical to tell him that being homosexual or bisexual would be nothing to be ashamed of, and not tell him that I was one of those people. I explained that I was bisexual and what that meant. He asked a few questions, but generally accepted it like it was no big deal. This past year, my small business hired a MtF trans woman to work for us, and we discussed trans as well with our son, which he also seemed to naturally grasp and just roll with. He knows that “Chris” is someday going to be “Chrissy”, and he’s totally fine with it, like water off a duck’s back.

There have been about 5 small conversations, seemingly out of nowhere, over the past few years, where he has told me that he feels that he is both a boy and a girl. I’ve been accepting and asked questions to try and help him find terms on his own, without labeling him myself, but he is still searching for how to express it (a feeling I know all too well), and he is clearly bothered by it on some level. Luckily, we have a great communication relationship and we can talk about this stuff in the first place.

While I had told him I was bisexual, I had not told him about being multigendered, and to the best of my knowledge, it’s not a concept he is at all aware of. It seemed to just sprout on it’s own, and occasionally there will be a bit more that he can put into words and I find out more, bit by bit. I can’t believe how incapable I feel, trying to help him navigate such murky waters. I’ve lived through this personally, I should be able to write the book on this. And yet I feel that I’m barely treading water.

Last night, of all nights, we watched a movie that had a brief kiss between two men. Now, my son has always been a ladies man in his own way (2 girlfriends in Kindergarten, I believe as an attempt to put me in an early grave lol), and has never expressed an interest in boys in that same way. But his reaction to that part of the movie last night was a reaction I’ve seen before, on my own face. I remember that feeling of discovering something new, like a jolt of electricity. Something that intrigues but without ever really telling why, but the pull is still there. He asked multiple questions about that character’s role in the rest of the movie, focusing on him in a way I hadn’t seen him do before.

So now there’s the “wondering if he’s bisexual” element as well.Obviously, I wouldn’t have a problem if he was. It’s still kind of like getting a bomb dropped in your lap though initially. In many ways I felt I was more prepared than most parents to deal with talking about the birds and the bees, given my lifestyle and the amount of study and research that went into it. And yet as these situations come up, you really can’t help but question every choice, wondering if it’s the right one, trying to support someone without applying pressure on either side of them is a hell of a tight rope to walk. I stumbled across this post soon after the first: Seven Years Old, Stealth, and Scared, and found myself in tears. It’s nice to know I’m not the only parent trying to muddle their way through this, desperately praying under my breath the whole time that I’m not messing everything up.

He’s my kiddo, he knows I’ll love him no matter what, and he communicates with me about things I wouldn’t have dreamed of admitting to my parents at his age. I’ll call that a success no matter what. 🙂

An Anonymous Outsider

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5 thoughts on “Sex, Gender, Orientation, and the Role of Genetics

  1. The world puts too much pressure on sexual identity. Stray even one step away from the ‘man/woman’ (quote: “normal Godlike relationship”) and you’re a freak, a weirdo, an outcast and a sinner. The way I see it is, unless you’re forcing someone into doing something they do not want to do or hurting someone, either physically or mentally, then whatever your sexual choices are is your own personal decision. When I discovered that I was submissive and wanted a dominant man to control me, I thought I was a freak & an outcast. I used to ask myself “What’s wrong with you? Why can’t you be normal?” No one can hurt us as much as we hurt ourselves. Go easy on yourself, dear friend. You’re doing the right thing and leading with your heart. Kindest regards, Cara

    Liked by 1 person

    • Luckily most of these mental battles played out years ago. Watching them repeat in the next generation, that’s a lot trickier.

      I will always accept my son, no matter his identity or orientation or if he got a Mad Max tattoo (though that might really be pushing it), and I obviously am not anti bisexuality or against deviating from the gender binary. But I do know the struggle I’ve endured because of those differences, and I think all parents want an easier life for their kids than they had.

      I just hope I can equip him well.


      • Yes, you’re right. I see your point. I do not have children, but I realize that as a parent you want to help your son avoid whatever mistakes you feel you made or help him solve similar problems that you faced and overcame. I know that even though homosexuality and bisexuality are more accepted today, there is still hatred and opposition in many people’s hearts. I guess the only thing you can do is encourage him to be open with you (which you said he already does) and let him know that you will always be there to listen and understand as he struggles to find his true self. In addition to you, I hope he has or will find an encouraging friend or two who will be there for him as well.

        Liked by 1 person

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