It all began when one social media user decided to call out the absurdity of describing being gay as a choice.
Editor's note: This article was originally published on April 15, 2021. It has since been updated.
Those opposed to homosexuality often describe being gay as a choice. Despite all evidence pointing toward the genetic, hormonal, developmental, social and cultural influences that come into play when developing an individual's sexual orientation, some folks seem intent on challenging a person's sexual orientation and reducing it to mere thought. This absurdity is exactly what Twitter user Simon H chose to call out when he shared the exact moment he "decided" to become gay and urged fellow members of the LGBTQ+ community to do the same. "So. Gays. When Y'all choose to be gay?" Simon asked in a tweet.
"For me, it was a beautiful spring day and I just thought, 'You know what, I really want to disappoint my parents, offend my church, limit my options, lose my rights, live in fear of homophobic abuse, be afraid to hold my partner's hand...'" he added. Simon's tongue-in-cheek "revelation" resonated with many gay social media users, who joined in on the fun with some hilarious responses. Here are some of the most sarcastic tweets from the thread:
It was during the 80s at the height of AIDS panic and stigma. I thought, y'know, I'll have some of that...— Alan Palmer 🏳️🌈 (@PalmerAlan) March 23, 2019
At the time people were yelling 'poof' at me and throwing rocks at me as I walked home from school, I was like - wow - I love being at risk. I should do this more.— Bill (@Bilboroberts) March 23, 2019
All the kids were calling me gay at school, so I just assumed they must be right and even though I didn't really understand what it meant, I just went with it. Still not sure I fully understand it now.— Toby Rothwell 💙 (@RothwellToby) March 23, 2019
I was going to be straight but then I realised I don’t look good in a fleece.— Phil Mews Author (@PhilMews) March 23, 2019
For me it was right after my mom hurled homophobic slurs at the tv following Ellen’s talk show debut.— potato, potato (@codyrothery) March 24, 2019
“They’ll give a show to any f****t these days!”
And I thought, yep I’m gonna be gay now. I want my family to hate me as much as they hate Ellen!
According to the American Psychological Association, although sexual orientation is often discussed as if it were merely a characteristic of an individual—like biological sex, gender identity, or age—this perspective is incomplete. "Sexual orientation is defined in terms of relationships with others. People express their sexual orientation through behaviors with others, including such simple actions as holding hands or kissing. Thus, sexual orientation is closely tied to the intimate personal relationships that meet deeply felt needs for love, attachment, and intimacy," the organization states on its website.
I decided while I was in a “happy” hetero relationship, I thought I know what I’ll do, I’ll ruin everything and disappoint everyone out of spite. Even though they had done nothing for me to feel that way. I thought, I’ll stop myself having kids and I’ll just be a cool uncle— Marky B (@markybram) March 23, 2019
I caught the gay when I was about 5. Extremely rare tv virus. I saw an episode of Sailor Moon and I’ve been the Moon Princess every since pic.twitter.com/pxwSWDDBxW— UnLegendary Virgin Femme Queen (@HighxFemme) March 23, 2019
At school. But in secret.— Ant (@antinbath) March 23, 2019
With the lack of education on relationships and sex I thought I had pioneered being gay so had to keep it to my self in case anyone found out before I could patent it. So I lived in anguish for years.
Turns out it had already been invented.
For me it happened while watching The Golden Girls. I thought, “There’s no way I can stay straight and really get the most out of this show.” Never looked back.— Dr. Thomas J. West III (@TJWest3) March 23, 2019
"In addition to sexual behaviors, these bonds include nonsexual physical affection between partners, shared goals and values, mutual support, and ongoing commitment. Therefore, sexual orientation is not merely a personal characteristic within an individual. Rather, one's sexual orientation defines the group of people in which one is likely to find the satisfying and fulfilling romantic relationships that are an essential component of personal identity for many people," the website adds.
When I was born and the doctor handed me the clipboard I checked off the rainbow box because it was pretty....I had no idea what it meant at the time🤦🏻♂️🥺— davey (@jerseyh0mo) March 23, 2019
After watching my trans son get bullied mercilessly by his teachers, beat up by peers, while my other kids were also bullied, I thought, why not come out as bi?— 🦙Vianna Goodwin (she) فيانا 🦙 ☪️🏳️🌈 (@GoodwinVianna) March 24, 2019
When I thought I really want to hurt this woman I’ve married, probably alienate my friends and upset my family, but hey sex with men feels just so damn right and completes me.— Andy’s tache (@AndrewSylvesr) March 23, 2019
It was a Tuesday. I was bored. And I couldn’t spell straight.— Mike Wilkinson (@Mike___MK) March 22, 2019
When I realised how frikking fabulous it was to be myself, be cool and do something different to the way everyone back home was living their lives.— Tim (@OblongBeard) March 22, 2019
When being black in America didn’t seem like a great enough challenge. I thought to myself, how can I make this worse?— Wash your hands before you text me. (@pocpsa) March 24, 2019
I decided to prove my school bullies right. It took 15 years after I left school but I’m sure they are very happy.— Andy N (@fintanbear) March 23, 2019
I chose to be gay when I saw two men kiss on the television when I was 7 and heard my mom say "that's so disgusting and evil. Why would they show that anywhere?"— Mario Aguilar (@Mario_The_Kid) March 23, 2019
I thought, YESSS! I want my mother to react that way about me someday!
At a Britney concert, one of her dancers gyrated his pelvis at juuust the right frequency to trigger the dormant gay synapses in my brain. I guess there’s just no turning them off.— FuckKemp | BLM | End AAPI Hate (@doctaaaaaah) March 24, 2019
I was visited my a missionary from my local gay club, and they told me all about the gay gospel. I fell to my feet and gave my life to the gay lifestyle right there. It was so powerful— Zack 🏳️🌈💛💚 (@sg15z) March 23, 2019