Pair Bonding is Important to Marriage
Marriage is based on the pair bonding that results from and is maintained by sexual intimacy. This does not obtain for mere friends or other relatives. Laws extending child care deductions to include that provided by relatives and other considerations for the help that others give is appropriate and welcome, but merely helping in the raising of a child is not marriage.
While pair bonding stems from intimacy, the sexual activity that produces it is only one aspect of the many interactions and behaviors that comprise the totality of a loving relationship.
It's bumping your hips against hers when your doing the dishes. It's bringing him a tall glass of orange juice when he's in bed with the flu. It's holding hands at church or at the movies. It's going with her to the doctor's when she gets the results of her biopsy. It's washing her back in the shower after she washes yours. It's buying him his favorite CD for Christmas. It's giving her a long hug when she gets home from a hard day at the clinic. It's all these things and a thousand things more which evolve from the bonds of love and affection that we share with that one special person. And all of these things apply equally to a same sex or opposite sex couple.
Yet some would ignore all this and peek in the bedroom to see how their parts fit together, as if the love they share the other 167 hours each week has no meaning. Yet the nearly 60 years of scientific research and my own 30 years of experience in this area tells me that romantic love is more than just how we do sex.
We do not know what underlying biological factors lead to the small portion of the population who cannot form bonds of love and affection for those of the opposite sex. I have my own speculations and research in this area continues. I do know that the failure to acknowledge the gay situation is not only harmful and unjust to those who are gay, but also harms those who perpetuate this misunderstanding and malice. A hateful heart is the devil's creation.
Psychological health requires that we acknowledge the reality of the world that we live in. Gays exist and are capable of the same range of human emotions and experiences as the rest of us, but with someone of the same gender. We can celebrate our shared humanity by treating gay relationships with equal admiration. All of us will be better off when we do.
Also posted at Family Scholar's Blog comment #110