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Compare and contrast homosexual and heterosexual relationships.

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I'm going to try and answer this as scientifically, concretely, and objectively as I can. The question doesn't specify how deep of a relationship to compare and contrast; therefore, in some circumstances, there wouldn't be a difference. A straight person could be friends with another straight person of the same...

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sex. Personally, I go out for beers with a high school friend of mine once a month. There's obviously a relationship there. We've been friends for nearly thirty years; there's nothing romantic about it. The same could be said about a gay person being friends with another gay person of the same sex. If the question is intending to ask about the romantic type of relationships, then I would say both types relationships require an emotional commitment between two people. There's no single way to define how this emotional bond works. It works differently for different couples, regardless of sexual orientation. I think a key biological difference between the two relationship types is that a heterosexual couple (assuming that one partner has a penis and the other has a vagina) is usually capable of reproducing biologically. Sperm combines with egg to create a zygote. This isn't 100% successful every single time, and some couples require medical/outside help; however, a homosexual couple usually isn't capable of conceiving a child with only their DNA. (A recent scientific study does show evidence that this might not always be the case.)

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The main point of comparison between homosexual and heterosexual relationships is that both are difficult to generalize. There are long-term, monogamous same-sex and heterosexual relationships. There are casual, short-term relationships among both heterosexual and homosexual people. Whether homosexual or heterosexual, people are attracted to others for a variety of reasons—physical attraction, emotional connection, a desire for material security, and so on. In short, there is as wide a variety of same-sex relationships as any other kind of relationship. Even the contrasts depend on where one lives and other factors. It may be true that many same-sex couples have to deal with the prejudices of their families and of society, but this might be said of some heterosexual relationships as well. Also, many same-sex relationships are accepted by families and within communities.

All of this being said, it is indisputable that LGBTQ+ couples and individuals experience issues that others do not. Some legal issues went away after the right to marry for same-sex couples was upheld by the Supreme Court. But many did not, especially those related to housing and employment. Also, the sad reality is that many old attitudes toward homosexuality in general die hard, and couples may face discrimination, ostracism, harassment, misunderstandings, and even violence in their communities. In some places, they may have trouble finding churches or civic organizations who will welcome them. Many continue to face issues in adopting children. These are problems that are not faced by many heterosexual couples.

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The first thing you might emphasize in your paper is that there are many different types of both homosexual and heterosexual relationships, ranging from loving marriages which endure for a lifetime to brief encounters in bars. The character of the people involved in the relationship is far more important than the gender. Especially as gay marriage becomes more widely legalized and accepted, the differences become fewer.

The first major difference between people's experience of homosexual and heterosexual relationships has to do with social acceptance. While homosexuality was an accepted part of ancient Greek culture, Christian and Islamic cultures have opposed it for many hundreds of years; only gradually have some Christian denominations begun to perform gay marriages and ordain gay clergy. This means that gay relationships were, for a long period, part of an underground gay counterculture. This put a great deal of stress on relationships and made it harder for homosexual couples to sustain long term relationships and build families.

Homosexual couples still face obstacles in many cultures around the world. Even in North America, it can be harder for homosexual couples to adopt children and to gain acceptance in certain areas or communities, although most major cities have a thriving and diverse culture, in which both both homosexual and heterosexual families are accepted. 

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