I think I was born gay. I’m sure you are wondering why…well I have so many feminine features; I talk like a girl and walk like a girl and do other things like a girl.
We lived in a compound house and I remember how other mothers used to tell my mother I was so beautiful and would look better if I were a girl. Most of the little boys in the house would scream at me whenever I tried to mingle with them. They would called me all sorts of names like, ‘barima kotobonku’, ‘kojo besia’ (these are popular names given to males who behave as females in Ghana).
I gradually got used to playing with the girls rather than the boys. I felt more comfortable around the girls. Every time there were no girls around to play with, I would be around my mother or my big sister all day. I asked my mother why the boys treated me the way they did. She told me to stay away from those who did not like me and I did.
My parents later realized the situation and I don’t know who gave them that advice but they thought enrolling me in a boys’ school could change the situation. I was therefore admitted into one of the popular boys’ senior high schools in Ghana.
Over there, I felt neglected. I did not fit into that circle of guys because I couldn’t play soccer with them or do most of the things they did as boys. I played the female roles in most dramas that were staged by the school’s drama club.
I was naïve in the first year but most of my seniors were very protective of me. Although I had heard about gayism, I had little knowledge about it at the time. There was this particular senior who was kind of over-friendly and he showered me with gifts and even asked me to pay him a visit. Then as time went on, we became closer, and he started writing love letters to me. Honestly, I got a bit scared but I could not complain to anyone. Then one day he called me and told me he loved me. Although he persisted, I tried my best to avoid him until he completed and left the school.
In fact I was attracted to most guys on campus and I wanted to be with them. But I did not get involved in any relationship with anyone until I completed SHS. Although I knew I was born gay, I kept on deceiving myself that I was straight and got into two different relationships with girls but none of them worked out. I completed university this year and I have been in five relationships, with two female exes and three male exes. I think I enjoy being with guys because I feel that is where I belong.
That was the confession of a male friend who is officially gay.
Dr Sulley Ali-Gabass, who is now in court for sodomizing a 16-year old SHS student, also admitted in his interview with Joy News’ Manasseh Azure Awuni that he was born gay. Dr. Sulley Ali-Gabass, a Senior Medical Doctor at Effia Nkwanta Regional Hospital in Takoradi, attributed his conduct to nature while still claiming it was a mistake.
These are his word: “I don’t know what to do with this sexual thing. Some of us are trying our best. It’s like being born with it. That urge is there.”
Meanwhile, Dr Anny Gaisy, a psychologist confirmed on Adom News that there is no known scientific proof that children are born with gay gens. However, she added that there might be a possibility of some percentage of biological, social and environmental factors that leads to children becoming gays. Some of these factors, she said, are parents treating their male children like females and vice versa.
Some parents think their male children who behave like females look better as females rather than males so they dress them like females and females like males.
According to Dr Gaisy, some children with such tendencies also confide in adults who may be gay themselves so it aggravates matters for the children in question. The closer they get to those people, the more they get pushed towards their gay tendencies, as in the case of the 16-year-old boy who was sodomized by Dr. Ali-Gabass. The boy thought he had found a role model on Facebook because doctors are classified under the highly ranked people in the society. Dr Gabass took advantage of this and helped himself.
I had my own share of this experience when I was in Senior High School. There was this block mate who would always come to my room to visit me after we met at the bath house. You know how students take their bath together in a big bath house in most senior high schools in Ghana. This lady was not my friend but I realized she had suddenly developed a habit of visiting me often after she saw me naked at the bath house. We were both in second year then. One afternoon I felt a hand on my right thigh in my sleep. I woke up only to find this lady sitting right beside me on my bed. I drove her out of my room immediately.
She wrote a letter to me the next day apologizing for her behavior. But she also stated in it that she was in love with me. I warned her to stay away from me else I would expose her using her letter as evidence. She stayed away afterwards. But I could only imagine what she would have done if I was her junior. A friend told me her senior in school kissed her a number of times because she said she loved a thick lips. She did not have a relationship with her senior and she is not gay now. But the senior took out her gay instincts on my friend in school, and my friend was afraid to complain.
Dr Gaisy also noted that some children are influenced financially. A child will easily fall into the trap of any stranger who showers them with gifts. She advised that parents should strengthen their relationship with their children and maintain cordial relationships every time so that their children can confide in them.
For me, it is not necessarily keeping an eye on your child 24/7, but if you are an easily approachable parent, your child will trust you, see you as a friend and tell you everything that happens in their lives. In the case of the 16-year-old boy, he was afraid to talk to his dad. Till date, his dad is not aware he is the one Dr. Ali-Gabass sodomized. He only told his mom when he got sick.
I believe the doctor will be duly punished if found guilty, but at the end of the day the poor boy has tested positive to HIV and has been left badly injured and requires surgery in the anus to survive.
Mr. Emmanuel Essampong is a Psychology Lecturer at the School of Public Health at the University of Ghana, and he said it is very difficult to say that somebody has same-sex attraction. He said “the concept of human sexuality is more than somebody being male or female – there are a lot of complex issues involved – it involves a person’s physical make up, how the person thinks and to a very large extent how a person feels’.
He said anatomic sex is important, but there are people born with both sexual organs not well developed. These are hermaphrodites. But true gender identity has to do with how a person feels inside and what sexual orientation one has, whether one is attracted to the opposite sex (heterosexual), attracted to both sexes (bisexual), or is attracted to same sex (gay/lesbian).
He however added that depending on the society in which one is situated, these things are either frowned upon or accepted. Mr Essampong said there is a mix between nature and nurture (upbringing) so it is a bit difficult to say that someone being sexually attracted to the same sex is genetic.
‘We are brought up in that way, which is to say that if anybody in our society sees somebody who is attracted to same sex, we turn to frown upon it but that does not take away the fact that the person has that feeling. He said.
So I am sitting here wondering; was my friend really born gay as believes? Yes, he grew up behaving like a girl. But is the equal to an inborn sexual desire for men, or he was nurtured into it because of the way family and society handled his girlish behavior?
And that also gives rise to the question as to whether Dr. Ali-Gabass was also born gay as he believes? He does not behave like a girl, but he has a thing for men. And from the incident in question, it would appear he like to penetrate other males, but it is not clear if those instincts also made him allow himself to be penetrated too.
So, deriving from what the experts said, my friend is probably gay today because, like he said, “I think I was born gay.” It is all in the head, and that is most likely because the people around him made him think that was the only option for him. But was that the case with Dr. Ali-Gabass. You be the judge.