As a little girl, I can remember my first "boyfriend," Mark. Mark was in my kindergarten class, and he told me one day at nap-time that he had a new girlfriend, Chris Dueker. Bless her heart, she was a nice little girl, daughter of the Methodist preacher. Mark and Chris lived across the street from one another, and now THEY were bf/gf, and I was left out. I punched Mark in the stomach - and he was on crutches from a broken leg. I guess now Chris would get to help him with his crutches instead of me. Oops.
In 1st grade I had a crush on Jeff, Steve, and maybe Jeff again.
2nd grade - this year it was Bill (Arment) and boy was he cute. As I remember it from the last high school class reunion that I crashed, he still looked pretty good!
3rd grade - Lester Lash tossed a plastic ring in my desk before recess. I think that made something official.
4th grade - back to Jeff. I liked going in cycles, because in 5th grade I liked Bill again.
5th grade - Tony. Oh, he had a cute, very blond flat-top, and blue, blue eyes.
6th grade - I think I had a crush on Donnie, who went on to be a juvenile deliquent. No kidding, he was sent away for stealing a car or something.
By junior high I was really crazy about boys, and I can still remember most of their names! These were the kind of crushes where your heart races when you see that ONE boy between passing periods, or if you got to sit at the same lunch table. There were dances, and I went. Even so my best friend, Joyce, watched me and said, "Carol, you really can't dance, can you?" By 9th grade I got to kiss one of those boys, and that was a memory that thrilled me for days. High school crushes continued, but I never had a steady boyfriend after I changed schools. I wasn't very popular, and even though I had guy friends, and there was one boy I REALLY liked, I never went "steady."
Thinking back to ALL the guys I can remember, I never once "liked" a girl. I can tell anyone, if I choose, every one of the important boys in my "romantic" history. For gay people, this is not the same. They've hidden their crushes, have been ashamed of those simple attractions, and have squelched sharing these hidden feelings for those of their same sex. I can share these things without shame - it's acceptable to have had feelings for other kids, and I don't hide in any way that I liked BOYS!
Why is it, then, that people (as in judgmental Christians) assume that gay folks suddenly "fall" into homosexuality? How come they think that someone who is gay DECIDED or CHOSE to become attracted to their same sex, when for example, they had been married to a straight spouse? And how is it possible that they refuse to realize that attraction goes way, way back?
In the same way that I'm straight, and in the same way that I had crushes as a kid, gay people also have feelings and crushes from early ages.
If there are judging Christians who are reading this, please take a look at your own "love history." It's not just a lustful thought that suddenly "takes over," but it is what one is attracted to that makes one straight or gay.