The following is a tongue-in-cheek questionnaire designed to illustrate the heterosexism implied in these same questions asked of lesbians and gays. Imagine as you read them if this were real and straight people were asked these questions. Gays and lesbians experience these questions in the same way a heterosexual would. When people say that living gay is an "alternative" lifestyle I always tell them that for me living straight is an alternative lifestyle. What Gloria Steinem did wish sexism is said, "What if we do to men what is done to woman?" She writes that if men were given lower paying jobs than women, lowered their chances of climbing the corporate ladder, blocked from becoming president, and if men had to endure other forms of sexist acts they would be appalled and everyone would seen the insanity of what we do to women. Imagining heterosexist acts and questions directed at straights illustrates the insanity done to gays and lesbians.

Heterosexism is the belief that everyone is, or should be, heterosexual. That rights and privileges should only go to heterosexuals and that any other sexual or romantic orientation either doesn’t exist and/or is inferior to heterosexuality.

Questions for Heterosexuals
developed by Martin Rochlin, Ph.D., 1977

  1. What do you think caused your heterosexuality?
  2. When and how did you first decide you were a heterosexual?
  3. Is it possible your heterosexuality is just a phase you may grow out of?
  4. Is it possible your heterosexuality stems from a neurotic fear of others of the same sex?
  5. Isn’t it possible that all you need is a good Gay lover?
  6. Heterosexuals have histories of failures in Gay relationships. Do you think you may have turned to heterosexuality out of fear of rejection?
  7. If you’ve never slept with a person of the same sex, how do you know you wouldn’t prefer that?
  8. If heterosexuality is normal, why are a disproportionate number of mental patients heterosexual?
  9. To whom have you disclosed your heterosexual tendencies? How did they react?
  10. Your heterosexuality doesn’t offend me as long as you don’t try to force it on me. Why do you people feel compelled to seduce others into your sexual orientation?
  11. If you choose to nurture children, would you want them to be heterosexual, knowing the problems they would face?
  12. The great majority of child molesters are heterosexuals. Do you really consider it safe to expose your children to heterosexual teachers?
  13. Why do you insist on being so obvious, and making a public spectacle of your heterosexuality? Can’t you just be what you are and keep it quiet?
  14. How can you ever hope to become a whole person if you limit yourself to a compulsive, exclusive heterosexual object choice and remain unwilling to explore and develop your normal, natural, healthy, God-given homosexual potential?
  15. Heterosexuals are noted for assigning themselves and each other to narrowly restricted, stereotyped sex-roles. Why do you cling to such unhealthy role-playing?
  16. Why do heterosexuals place so much emphasis on sex?
  17. With all the societal support marriage receives, the divorce rate is spiraling. Why are there so few stable relationships among heterosexuals?
  18. How could the human race survive if everyone were heterosexual, considering the menace of overpopulation?
  19. There seem to be very few happy heterosexuals. Techniques have been developed with which you might be able to change if you really want to. Have you considered aversion therapy?
  20. Do heterosexuals hate and/or distrust others of their own sex? Is that what makes them heterosexual?

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