Recalled Gendered Behavior in Childhood: A Comparison of Androphilic Men, Gynephilic Men, and Androphilic Women in Japan
The current study tested the hypothesis that men who are androphilic (sexually attracted to adult men) in a non-Western, developed country—Japan—would recall engaging in more female-typical behavior, and less male-typical behavior, in childhood, compared to men who are gynephilic (sexually attracted to adult women). Androphilic men, androphilic women, and gynephilic men (N = 302) responded to the Female-Typical Behavior Subscale and the Male-Typical Behavior Subscale of the Childhood Gender Identity Scale, which asked participants to recall their childhood behavior. Results indicated that gynephilic men scored highest on the Male-Typical Behavior Subscale and lowest on the Female-Typical Behavior Subscale. Androphilic women scored the highest on the Female-Typical Behavior Subscale and lowest on the Male-Typical Behavior Subscale. Androphilic men scored intermediately for both the Male- and Female-Typical Behavior Subscales. The results supported the hypothesis that Japanese androphilic men would recall greater gender-nonconforming childhood behavior compared to gynephilic men. These results further reinforce the conclusion that childhood gender-nonconforming behavior is a cross-culturally universal aspect of psychosexual life course development in androphilic men. We discuss why this may be the case, as well as why cross-cultural variation occurs in the magnitude with which recalled childhood gender nonconformity is reported by androphilic males.
KeywordsSexual orientation Gender nonconformity Androphilia Japan
We thank Eiji Enomoto, Chiji Masafumi, Kiyoshige Murata, Ayumi Sawada, Yoshiko Sawada, Sachiko Shimada, Hideki Shiraume, Takashi Yanai, Ryoko Yoshikawa, and all of the individuals who agreed to participate in our study. Various stages of this research were supported by the University of Lethbridge, Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council of Canada (SSHRC) Masters Scholarship to LJP, Chinook summer research award to CRW, and SSHRC Insight Grant to PLV. All the authors declare that they have no conflict of interest.
The University of Lethbridge Human Subject Research Committee approved this research. Participants were required to sign consent forms prior to taking part in the study. All procedures performed in this study were in accordance with the ethical standards of the Canadian Tri-Council Policy Statement 2 (2014): Ethical Conduct for Research Involving Humans.
- Chiñas, B. N. (1992). The Isthmus Zapotecs: A matrifocal culture of Mexico. Fort Worth, TX: Harcourt Brace Jovanovich College Publishers.Google Scholar
- Fausto-Sterling, A. (2014, October 13). The evidence of memory. Boston Review. Retrieved from http://www.bostonreview.net/wonders/fausto-sterling-evidence-memory.
- Green, R. (1987). The “sissy boy syndrome” and the development of homosexuality. New Haven, CT: Yale University Press.Google Scholar
- Johnson, L. L., Bradley, S. J., Birkenfeld-Adams, A. S., Radzins Kuksis, M. A., Maing, D. M., Mitchell, J. N., & Zucker, K. J. (2004). A parent-report Gender Identity Questionnaire for Children. Archives of Sexual Behavior, 33, 105–116. doi: 10.1023/B:ASEB.0000014325.68094.f3.CrossRefPubMedGoogle Scholar
- Kinsey, A. C., Pomeroy, W. B., & Martin, C. E. (1948). Sexual behavior in the human male. Philadelphia, PA: W. B. Saunders.Google Scholar
- McLelland, M. J. (2000). Male homosexuality in modern Japan: Cultural myths and social realities. Richmond, Surrey: Curzon Press.Google Scholar
- Ministry of Internal Affairs and Communications Statistics Bureau. (2011, October 26). 平成 22 年国勢調査の概要. Retrieved from http://www.stat.go.jp/data/kokusei/2010/kihon1/pdf/gaiyou2.pdf.
- Risman, B., & Schwartz, P. (1988). Sociological research on male and female homosexuality. Annual Review of Sociology, 14, 125–147. Retrieved from http://www.jstor.org/stable/2083313.
- Singh, D. (2012). A follow-up study of boys with gender identity disorder. Unpublished doctoral dissertation, University of Toronto, Toronto.Google Scholar
- Statistics Bureau Ministry of Affairs and Communications Japan. (2015). Statistical Handbook of Japan 2015. Retrieved from http://www.stat.go.jp/english/data/handbook/pdf/2015all.pdf#page=17.
- Steensma, T. D., van der Ende, J., Verhulst, F. C., & Cohen-Kettenis, P. T. (2013). Gender variance in childhood and sexual orientation in adulthood: A prospective study. Journal of Sexual Medicine, 10, 2723–2733. doi: 10.1111/j.1743-6109.2012.02701.x.
- Sullivan, A., & Sheffrin, S. M. (2003). Economics: Principles in action. Upper Saddle River, NJ: Pearson Prentice Hall.Google Scholar
- United Nations Development Project. (2013). Human Development Reports: About Human Development. Retrieved from http://hdr.undp.org/en/humandev/.
- VanderLaan, D. P., Gothreau, L. M., Bartlett, N. H., & Vasey, P. L. (2011). Recalled separation anxiety and gender atypicality in childhood: A study of Canadian heterosexual and homosexual men and women. Archives of Sexual Behavior, 40, 1233–1240. doi: 10.1007/s10508-010-9695-z.CrossRefPubMedGoogle Scholar
- Whitam, F. L. (1997). Culturally universal aspects of male homosexual transvestites and transsexuals. In B. Bullough, V. Bullough, & J. Elias (Eds.), Gender blending (pp. 189–203). Amherst, NY: Prometheus.Google Scholar