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May 18, 1970

Homosexuality and Medicine

Author Affiliations

From the Department of Psychiatry, Albert Einstein College of Medicine, Yeshiva University, Bronx, NY.

JAMA. 1970;212(7):1199-1202. doi:10.1001/jama.1970.03170200063009

Homosexuality is a medical disorder which has reached epidemiologic proportions; its frequency of incidence surpasses that of the recognized major illnesses in the nation. Homosexuality may be classified in two categories: obligatory (true) homosexuality and episodic homosexual behavior. It is essential to differentiate carefully between these types in order to determine the significance of the disorder, its treatment, and its prognosis. This condition is not innate or inborn but is an acquired, learned maladaptation arising from faulty gender identity in the earliest stages of life. Only massive childhood fears can damage and disrupt the standard male-female pattern and ultimately lead to the later development of obligatory homosexuality.