S to the e to the x yeah baby yeah [Question about "subjectivity" of sexuality]

So is sexuality subjective or is it really beyond human control?

actually this should have gone in the great debates… oops sorry

What exactly is the question? What does subjectivity have to do with being “beyond human control”?

Thread title modified to attempt to reflect the topic of the OP.

Potestas, I’m also not clear on exactly what you’re hoping for out of this thread. It may be helpful to elaborate, and at the very least, provide your own opinion on the answer to your question.

If you’re asking about sexual orientation and its plasticity, it’s mostly beyond individual control. You’d have to do a major brainwashing job on most straight guys to make them gay, and vice versa. Programs that “cure” men of being gay have some successes (?) but not many.

If you’re talking about the level of sexual desire, this too is pretty difficult to modify beyond a certain rather small degree. Some people have a very high level of desire, and others have so little they’re almost asexual. It would be remarkably difficult to change either into the other.

The same is true of certain specific sex acts. People who don’t like anal sex might, with patience and kindness and extreme gentleness, be persuaded to like it…or they might not. There are many people who can never bring themselves to perform oral sex. These things are not “beyond human control,” but they are pretty foundational and very resistant to change.

Levels of sexual desire, or libido, can be tremendously influenced by hormonal levels. That is not to say that hormones are the sole determinant of libido but hormonal manipulation is capable of modification of libido beyond “a rather small degree”.

Didn’t know that. Scary thought.

(Has anyone abused this, using hormones as an aphrodisiac?)

I feel a bit silly now, as I should have thought of the effects of some of the SSRI anti-depressant meds, which can absolutely kill libido. (Personal experience.)

Also speaking from personal experience, some meds to treat enlarged prostate can do the same.

Also, as any woman who’d been a woman for more than a decade or so will tell you, endogenous hormonal level fluctuations and life situation fluctuations can cause wild libido swings, from everything from hour to hour to year to year.