Peer Group Interaction
Storms (1981) suggests a purely constructionist theory of development. Noting that a person’s sex drive begins to develop in adolescence, Storms suggests that those who develop early begin to become sexually aroused before they have significant contact with the other sex. Because dating usually begins around the age of 15, boys who mature at the age of 12 still play and interact in predominantly same-sex groupings, and so their emerging erotic feelings are more likely to focus on boys.
Storms’s theory is supported by the fact that homosexuals do tend to report earlier sexual contacts than heterosexuals. Also, men’s sex drive may emerge at a younger age than women’s, if such things as frequency of masturbation are any measure, which may explain why there are fewer lesbians than gay men.
Yet Storms’s theory also has its problems. On page 345, we discuss the example of Sambian boys who live communally and have sex with other boys from an early age until they are ready to marry. If Storms is right and a male becomes homosexual because only males are available at the time of sexual awakening, then all male Sambians should be homosexuals. However, almost all go on to lead heterosexual lives.