Also.Also.Also: Can a Straight Woman Become a Lesbian Later in Life? and Other Stories for Your Week

Hot DANG this is a gigantic link roundup! Which is how the cookie crumbles when you inadvertently skip your end-of-the-week link roundup, which is what I did last week. So! Strap in, get ready to be amazed, call your friends and family and tell them you’ll be late for dinner: IT’S TIME FOR SOME LINKS.

Queer as in F*ck You

+ Psychiatrists Have Issued a Historic Admission of the Harm Done by Aversion Therapy.

+ Accusations Against Director of Netflix Doc Keep Rolling In.

+ Can a Straight Woman Really Become a Lesbian Later in Life? “The Truth About Sexual Fluidity.”

+ Over Half of Bisexual Youth Don’t Have Family Support.

+ Brazil Is Accused of Stripping Away LGBTQ Rights.

+ Pink Opens Up About Her Sexuality: “I Never Say Never”.

+ Remembering the Gay and Drag Scene of 1970s Auckland.

+ Five Great LGBT Activists You Need to Know.

+ 10 Queer Models Claiming Space in New York Fashion.

+ Patti Harrison: Meet the Trans Comedian Making Fart Jokes an Act of Resistance.

+ Chimamanda Adichie’s Niece Chisom Eduputa Comes Out as a Lesbian.

+ Shannon Purser Of ‘Stranger Things’ Talks What It’s Like To Be Queer & Religious.

+ Cara Delevingne’s Allegations About Harvey Weinstein Feel Awfully Familiar.

+ 19 Years After Matthew Shepard’s Brutal Homicide, Anti-LGBT Murders Persist.

Welcome to the Hellmouth

+ 20 of America’s Top Political Scientists Gathered to Discuss Our Democracy. They’re Scared. Just a super chill headline for you.

+ What Facebook Did to American Democracy.

+ How the Kochs Are Using Mick Pence to Shape Trump’s White House.

+ Trump’s “Adult Daycare” Is More Truth Than Fiction: Report.

+ Trump Given A Subpoena for All Documents Relating to Assault Allegations. Cool.

+ Several States Vow to Sue Trump Administration Over Obamacare Sabotage

+ The Danger of President Pence.

+ How American Politics Became So Exhausting.

+ What It Means for You: The Administration’s “Cost Sharing Reduction” Funding Cuts.

+ The 25 Conservatives Actually Worth Following on Twitter ????????

Doll Parts

Or The Harvey Weinstein Corner?! Oh thank god OK there’s Roxane Gay. Whew.

+ I Have Been Raped by Far Nicer Men Than You.

+ The Fall of Harvey Weinstein Should Be a Moment to Rethink Masculinity.

+ How Men Like Harvey Weinstein Implicate Their Victims in Their Acts.

+ Watching Harvey Weinstein Fall, Trump’s Accusers Feel Frustrated.

+ Sarah Polley: The Men You Meet Making Movies.

+ Mia Kirshner: “I was not protected from Harvey Weinstein. It’s time for institutional change.

+ It’s Time to Weaponize the “Whisper Network”.

+ Roxane Gay interviewed Nicki Minaj.

+ First-Ever Sex Discrimination Legal Network Is Ready to Defend Women in Trump’s America.

Keep Up

+ A Brief History of Companies Courting African-American Dollars.

+ The Drug Industry’s Triumph Over the DEA.

+ Massive Explosion Kills More Than 300 In Somalia’s Capital.

+ Real Talk About Fake News: Towards a Better Theory for Platform Governance.

+ Christianity in America Is More Politically Polarized Than Ever.

+ Kaepernick Files Grievance Saying NFL, Owners Conspired To Shut Him Out.

+ Yemen’s Cholera Outbreak Now the Worst in History as Millionth Case Looms.

+ Not Even Hospitals in Puerto Rico Know How Many People Have Died.

+ Why Are More American Teenagers Than Ever Suffering From Severe Anxiety?

+ Texas Inmates Donated Nearly $54,000 for Hurricane Relief.

+ The Insidious Planning That Goes Into Gentrification.

+ How the United States Makes Migrants ‘Pay’ for Their Crimes—and Then Moves to Deport Them.

Saw This, Thought of You

+ “Allah” Is Found on Viking Funeral Clothes.

+ ‘Our Minds Can Be Hijacked’: The Tech Insiders Who Fear a Smartphone Dystopia. Again, just a super chill headline that shouldn’t alarm you at all.

+ Is There an Upside to Having No Social Life?

+ A Master Sculptor and FX Artist Explains How to Restore a Jim Henson Puppet.

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Laneia is the Director of Operations and founding member of Autostraddle, and you're the reason she's here.

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    • Ugh this going to be used to further white nationalist nonsense and anti-refugee islamphobic drivel. I saw a völkisch username in the thread and everything already.

      If Ms. Mulder is an Islamic art historian & archaeologist I feel sorry for what she’s about witness. :(

  1. So about that “Can a Straight Woman Really Become a Lesbian Later in Life?” clickbait article, of course it’s about the concept of sexual fluidity based on the research of Lisa Diamond, who’s not free of baiting people with this sort of ambiguous talk as well, but if you don’t want to spend a lot of time reading her book to figure out what she actually means by that stuff then long story short, a straight woman cannot really become a lesbian later in life, at least according to the theory of “sexual fluidity” creator herself.

    Basically, she argues that people, including women, actually have fixed sexual orientation, which is purely sexual attraction, and not just any sexual attraction but “proceptivity”. It’s a term borrowed from the studies on animal sexuality, here it just means a desire to have sex with (preferably for the sake of clarity) non-specific sexually attractive people of certain gender (as opposed to “I like only that one person”).

    There’s also “arousability/receptivity”, which is attraction to a specific person, especially when it’s getting developed in response to something, like that person’s advances, and Diamond’s theory ties that with “fluidity potential”, which is the ability to develop sexual attraction to specific person outside of the pattern drawn by your sexual orientation. Which as Diamond argues happens usually due to falling in love with that person first.

    Diamond believes that romantic attraction has nothing to do with any fixed orientation, that potentially we are all gender-blind when it comes to love. So we all could fall in love with anyone, but if it’s with a person incompatible with our sexual orientation then whether we’ll develop sexual feelings or not to them depends on our “fluidity potential”, ranging from non-existant to high.

    So for example, according to that theory and judging from personal testimonies, Cynthia Nixon is probably a woman with heterosexual orientation and some fluidity potential. Meanwhile Lauren Morelli – a lesbian with no fluidity potential (according to the article she wrote she loved her ex-husband, but even that didn’t make her feel sexual attraction to him).

    Of course, there are also people with bisexual orientation, and for them “fluidity potential” doesn’t really matter since it overlaps with their sexual orientation anyway. But technically, those are supposed to be different things, while in real life “fluid” is used as just a synonym to “bisexual”.

    • I’m wary of much of the research into “sexual fluidity” because it is now being used by those pushing gay conversion therapy who use it as part of their “Sexual Attraction Fluidity Exploration in Therapy” ideas.

      The document linked in the article is also titled “Once a Lesbian Always a
      Lesbian, Right? Or Not?” so it isn’t really about later-in-life lesbians, and despite what the article says it’s not research either.

      • I remember Diamond herself complained that her research is misused by homophobic groups, and I think she’s actually in large part responsible for that.
        While her research and the book about it pointed out that women in her study group who were exclusively sexually attracted to women were “the only extremely solid group”, she never mentions that in her talks for the press. If you knew about her and her study only from what she says for the sake of the media coverage, you would definitely get an impression it’s about proving that ‘all women are sexually fluid, aka bisexual’.

        Media love to push the idea that “all women are bisexual” and “lesbians can be turned”, and she always delivers. Like for example, puts a focus on the fact that many ‘lesbians’ in her study dropped lesbian label and started dating men, never mentions that those women were never exclusively attracted to women or that even according to her own theory most of those women didn’t count as homosexual, since as she points out in her book, many women identified as lesbians simply because they believed they could only fall in love with a woman but were (generally) sexually attracted to men too. And as I already explained she theorizes that love is gender blind while generalized sexual attraction is your actual sexual orientation.

        So I think that she’s willing to do anything for media coverage. Perhaps personal reasons come to play too (she identifies as a lesbian, now wonder if the one with “high fluidity potential” or not). But regardless, the theory itself has little to do with it.

  2. Cholera? Two things: one, cholera is a hideous way to die, second only to ebola, because you basically have diarrhea to the point where you get dehydrated, but the bacteria is IN THE WATER, so drinking more only makes you sicker (don’t @ me, I know there are lots of other horrible ways to go, and I’m not here to argue).

    Two, it is totally preventable with basic sanitation. It’s a reasonable concern when a natural disaster (like a hurricane) rolls through and destroys the infrastructure, but in this case it’s being caused by humans, as another side effect of the strife of war. Ffffffffff us.

  3. Later in life lesbians are certainly free to call themselves lesbians if that is a label that describes their experience.

    That said, I don’t like the way sexual fluidity combines with monosexism to render bisexuality invisible. If you fall in love or lust with multiple genders, there’s a word for that — multiple words, even. It doesn’t have to be 50-50. It can be cyclical. It can even be political.

    This so-called debate leaves no room for the heterosexism and internalised bi-/homophobia these women have grown up with and lived through, shaping their experiences. It doesn’t leave room for cultural sexual suppression, ranging from not understanding one’s sexuality to being completely sexually fulfilled but unable to imagine being sexual with anyone other than their current partner.

    • I totally agree. That whole article infuriated me. “We’re not talking about bisexuality, we’re talking about some who was completely in love with a man and is later completely in love with a woman.” Um, bisexual people do that all the time, what are you talking about? And then further defending this interpretation by emphasizing that each woman was COMPLETELY HAPPY with their original male partner, which I guess bisexual people can’t be, you know they’re always thinking of running off with another gender anyway.

  4. I’ve just dropped down from reading the article about Pence as potential Pres.

    Not being from the US, I’m curious to know what the possibilities could be if both he and the current occupant of the office, who shall remain nameless, and the VP, are both disqualified, in some way from becoming /continuing as President? Is there anyone out there with ideas. Does the country go to another election??

    Pence is certainly a piece of work, isn’t he. Hypocrite, coward, cringingly self delusional…. it just goes on.

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