Bipolar And Homosexuality


Im curious about my 18 yr old son. Within the last 2 yrs, many times he seemed depressed. He would go to his room and stay in there and sleep. He slept everyday almost his senior year. He use to be a really happy fun loving child. He slowly changed, turned more gothic looking. He didnt graduate, he left home the last 2 months of school. He has since age 12 done things with out caring about the consequence. He is now gay. He at one time was crazy for girls. Im just curious. He has been told by a few people that he seems Manic. And I did experience seeing him somwhat depressed. He has no desire to achieve any goals. He seems to be doing good for a week, then suddenly he is gone, stranded somewhere. Anyway, i spoke to someone and they said sometimes a bipolar person can be attracted to the same sex. So can bipolar and homosexuality be related?

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Your son’s behavior (sleeping all the time, looking “gothic”, withdrawing, not graduating, etc.) is possibly consistent with unipolar (regular depression-only) depression. I don’t see you describing anything that might make the picture look more like bipolar disorder, however, with the possible exception of the not caring about consequences, which could also be a consequence of regular depression. In order for your son to be bipolar, we’d need you to be talking about periods of very elevated, and energetic mood, usually a good mood but sometimes agitated. I’m not hearing you say that, so I would be thinking more in terms of standard depression rather than bipolar. But, you may have not reported the full picture of what your son is doing, and you may not even be aware of it all, so we can’t really know what is happening.

To the very best of my knowledge, there is no direct connection between mood disorder (of bipolar or unipolar varieties) and homosexuality. There might be some indirect connections between mood disorder and homosexuality, but these would not be causal relationships in the sense you are looking for. For example, someone who is bipolar tends to become disinhibited when they enter into a manic (energized) phase. During this period of disinhibition and impulsivity, someone might act on sexual impulses that they normally would keep under wraps, but even if this happened, the impulses would be there before the illness and not caused by the illness. Someone who is deeply depressed might be depressed in part because they are homosexual and perceive themselves to be defective or shameful as a result. They would not be actually defective in reality (for homosexuality is a normal variation of human sexuality and not in any way a disorder or problem), but many people in society are quite bigoted and prejudiced about homosexuality and will attempt to shame and cause emotional harm to happen to gay people. If this were part of the scenario that is playing out for your son, it would be the reaction to the homosexuality that was causing the mood disorder, and not the other way around. For the record, homosexuality appears to be determined primarily by fluctuations in hormones that occur during fetal development (during pregnancy). By the time a child has come into the world, their sexual preferences are apparently (in some sense that is not altogether understood just yet) already largely fixed, even though those preferences will not come to be expressed for years.


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