Researchers are trying to discover when sexual orientation first becomes apparent in humans and what might cause it – and they’re looking to twins for the answers.
A controversial study, published in the journal Development Psychology and reported by The Sunday Times, looked at 56 twin pairs with “discordant sexual orientations”.
The participants were asked to provide childhood photographs, so the researchers – Gerulf Rieger and Tuesday Watts from the University of Essex – could examine any differences in expression at various ages.
Sarah Nunn and Rosie Ablewhite, 29, were involved in the study. Their photographs showed great dissimilarities. Where Sarah preferred dresses from a young age, Rosie was commonly seen in dungarees. Where Sarah played with barbies, Rosie liked batman. When the two of them dressed up as characters from The Flintstones, Sarah dressed as Wilma and Rosie as Fred.
“Any boyfriend instantly felt more at home with Rosie,” Sarah told The Sunday Times.
“She liked football, talked about boy things, played video games. They’d be like, ‘Sarah, you’re really boring. I’m going to go and play with Rosie’. I’d get jealous that they liked her better. But when they tried to get romantic with Rosie she’d say, ‘That’s not me’. Then they came back.”