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Weissman, P. (1962). Structural Considerations in Overt Male Bisexuality. Int. J. Psycho-Anal., 43:159-168.

(1962). International Journal of Psycho-Analysis, 43:159-168

Structural Considerations in Overt Male Bisexuality

Philip Weissman


The relationship between normal male bisexuality and overt male bisexuality has been discussed. In the former, both the conscious heterosexual behaviour and the unconscious homosexuality are derived mainly from the oedipal conflict. In overt male bisexuality it is necessary to understand the structural and genetic origins of the overt homosexual component. If the overt homosexuality is derived from preoedipal identification with the mother and the object relations are on the narcissistic level, then the overt bisexuality is basically a homosexual perversion. A case was presented illustrating these findings with attempts to explain why and how heterosexuality made its appearance. Strong archaic superego demands and ego-ideal demands for overt heterosexual behaviour necessitated a suppression of homosexuality and its replacement by overt pseudo-heterosexuality. The overt heterosexuality could be achieved and enjoyed via the utilization of fetishistic behaviour in which the woman's body is equated with a phallus. Examples are given of overt male bisexuality, which are oedipal in nature. Here the superego demands a regressive object choice along with the heterosexual object choice. The homosexuality in one case was derived from the acting out of the homosexual component as part of the repetition of the entire oedipal conflict; in the other case the overt homosexuality represented a defence against heterosexual oedipal wishes under certain conditions which intensified castration and separation anxiety. The types of overt male sexuality presented are not intended as specific exclusive classifications, but rather as examples of the extremes in a spectrum of multiple variations proceeding from the early preoedipal period on to the oedipal and post-oedipal period. The justification for the classification lies in its clinical usefulness in dealing with any given case of overt male bisexuality for the better understanding of its structural and genetic developments.

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