Believe it or not, some people still believe that homosexuality is a choice. They somehow deny the possible genetic, hormonal, developmental, social and cultural influences that come into play when developing one’s sexual orientation, and reduce it to mere thought. To illustrate the absurdity of this claim, Twitter user Simon H has decided to ‘share’ the exact moment he decided to become gay.

Image credits: FreelanceCynic

Image credits: FreelanceCynic

The tweet resonated with other homosexuals on the social network and they quickly joined the fun

Image credits: TotchosB

Image credits: Bilboroberts

Image credits: PalmerAlan

Image credits: RothwellToby

Image credits: markybram

Research over the last several decades has demonstrated that sexual orientation ranges along a continuum, from exclusive attraction to the other sex to exclusive attraction to the same sex. However, sexual orientation is usually discussed in terms of three categories: heterosexual, gay/lesbian and bisexual. This range of behaviors and attractions has been described in various cultures and nations throughout the world and many cultures use identity labels to describe people who express these attractions. In the United States the most frequent labels are lesbians, gay men, and bisexual people. However, some people may use different labels or none at all.

Image credits: codyrothery

Image credits: PhilMews

Image credits: langrax

Image credits: antinbath

Image credits: OkayChae_

According to the American Psychological Association, sexual orientation is commonly discussed as if it were solely a characteristic of an individual, like biological sex, gender identity or age. “This perspective is incomplete because sexual orientation is defined in terms of relationships with others,” they write on their website. “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. 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 satisfying and fulfilling romantic relationships that are an essential component of personal identity for many people.”

Image credits: jerseyh0mo

Image credits: TJWest3

Image credits: TheGeoffey

Image credits: Baulked1

Image credits: KathrynNicassio

Interestingly, there is still no consensus among scientists about the exact reasons that an individual develops a heterosexual, bisexual, gay or lesbian orientation. “Although much research has examined the possible genetic, hormonal, developmental, social and cultural influences on sexual orientation, no findings have emerged that permit scientists to conclude that sexual orientation is determined by any particular factor or factors. Many think that nature and nurture both play complex roles; most people experience little or no sense of choice about their sexual orientation.”

Image credits: zeilreigan

Image credits: Mike___MK

Image credits: AndrewSylvesr

Image credits: GoodwinVianna

Image credits: hbafilmshorts

Also, it’s important to remember that research has found no inherent association between any of these sexual orientations and psychopathology. Both heterosexual behavior and homosexual behavior are absolutely normal aspects of human sexuality. “Both have been documented in many different cultures and historical eras. Despite the persistence of stereotypes that portray lesbian, gay and bisexual people as disturbed, several decades of research and clinical experience have led all mainstream medical and mental health organizations in this country to conclude that these orientations represent normal forms of human experience. Lesbian, gay and bisexual relationships are normal forms of human bonding. Therefore, these mainstream organizations long ago abandoned classifications of homosexuality as a mental disorder.”

Image credits: OblongBeard

Image credits: beebeejay

Image credits: fintanbear

Image credits: PocPsa

Image credits: ProfessorGeorgy