You probably like to think you’re pretty in touch with your sexuality, at the very least when it comes to which gender it is that you fancy. Seems pretty basic: you’re straight, you’ve always been straight, you’re always going to be straight, right?
At least according to this new study from The Journal of Personality and Social Psychology, anyway, which says that straight people, much like Bigfoot, do not exist.
Rather than depending on self-reporting, which they say is often inaccurate, researchers instead measured physiological responses, looking at subjects’ eye dilation when they were shown pornography.
They found that dilation happened when self-reportedly straight subjects watched heterosexual porn – but also when they watched gay porn, too. And as we all know, because we’ve read The Game, pupil dilation means you gots the hots for somebody.
Ritch C. Savin-Williams, Director of the Sex and Gender Lab at Cornell University, told Broadly that he “wasn’t surprised” by the results, putting inaccurate self-reporting down to societal standards dictating how men feel they can express their sexuality.
This societal pressure is worse for men, Savin-Williams continued. “We’ve always recognised mostly straight women, that is, women who mostly are straight but if the right woman comes along, well maybe she’ll try it out. We used to think that was only a female phenomenon.”
But, it turns out, when Savin-Williams and his team showed straight men photos of a man masturbating, they responded the way they did to photos of a woman masturbating. “So we’re actually able to show physiologically that all guys are not either straight, gay, or bi”.
“There are aspects [of male sexuality] along a continuum, just as we have always recognised with women. Men have gotten so much cultural crap put on them that even if a man does have some sexual attraction to guys, they would never say it.”
“If you look at women, the self esteem of lesbian women tends to be higher than that of straight women. Maybe they feel like they have more freedom. Granted, society may not always like it, but it is your own authentic self.”