There should be people in your area who can do this surgery- or you can certainly contact us at the NY Voice Center of the NY Otolaryngology Group. But I think a lot of gay men, including me, want to know why. Why do some gay men “sound” gay? I had normal testosterone and developed a powerful first tenor voice. 17 – Deep Voice Testosterone is one of the factors that lead to having a deeper voice. Some effeminate men … A high pitched voice is not usually caused by a lump in the throat or a post nasal drip. I explained it to my grandma this way, when she asked "why do gay men sound like that." Regarding the idea that men who sing in a higher range are gay, I'm a professional singer and by far most of the countertenors I've met are straight. Many straight men have high, “gay” sounding voices, while many gay men actually do not. I believe that gay men use a female persona to be campy. Human beings are complex. Rahul Kalvapalle, Patricia Lonergan and Don Campbell, How this tiny animal is helping scientists investigate disorders of the human brain, How U of T handled a semester like no other, Your email address will not be published. This leads to traits like homosexuality. A high-pitched, lisping voice that goes up at the end has been part of the gay male stereotype for years. Even growing up in an extremely Christian family, where I tried to hide what I was, I still got questions all the time about my sexuality. Most hetero women do. The extent to which we develop either is determined by the interplay of hormones in utero. The problem can be from using one’s voice incorrectly- such as in a falsetto- which should respond to voice therapy. The male voice develops in puberty when testosterone levels are anything but level. During puberty, a surge of sex hormones causes vocal folds to lengthen and build up muscle, more so for boys who experience a spike in testosterone at this time. The gay voice happens when I live in my normal state of anxiety. We gain most information about the speaker's message by observing the use of intonation, prosody, body language, etc. Substantial vocal folds also explain why men tend to have deeper voices than women. In more severe cases, spasms may occur on every word, making a person’s speech very difficult to understand. Then there are straight men who have an effeminate voice. Finally, I would try to establish why some gay men do not acquire the gay way of speaking. I didn't learn it from anyone, it was inherent. I don't really care how I sound, but I do crave the feeling of authenticity that characterizes voice #2. If you were a smaller subgroup of individuals and you wanted to find other people in your community, speech is a no-fail, no-guesswork way to communicate your "membership" to and of that group. Maybe you grew up with a bunch of females either at home or in the neighborhood. An aging vocal mechanism. This allows the vocal cord to relax and lowers the pitch of the voice. Common causes of high T levels in people with vulvas include: Hirsutism, which causes the excessive growth of body hair. A high pitched voice can be quite a social problem for a young man- just as a low pitched voice can be an issue for a woman in our society. It is not just the pitch of the voice, but it's the valley-girl-mixed-with-British pronunciation that, in my opinion allows them to feel better about themselves. "You're just so.... cute. " That had always been there. Males with lower voices masturbate more frequently compared to those who's voices are higher pitched. High pitch is often associated with anxiety and nervousness, while a low pitch indicates self confidence and low levels of stress. I would also identify the different modes of gay speech and determine what other factors, e.g., socioeconomic status, region, age, etc. Not just his voice, but very much about him (body language, his walk) makes him appear to be gay. I wish I could sound completely gay/effiminate because it prevents unwanted attention from girls. Are you a man who is dealing with high levels of estrogen? More often, hoarse: Acid reflux certainly can impact the voice. There is no physical reason why gay men in particular should have a high voice. It wasn't until my mid-teens that I can recall my speech patterns changing depending on the circumstances. I have the opposite problem. We are close in age and I've always known he was gay. If one pictures a string instrument, we raise the pitch by tightening the string and lower it by loosening the string. It's frustrating not having an answer! Another condition that may affect your voice is a voice disorder called puberphonia. After identifying phonetic characteristics that seem to make a man’s voice sound gay, their best hunch is that some gay men may subconsciously adopt certain female speech patterns. Spasmodic dysphonia causes voice breaks during speaking and can make the voice sound tight, strained, or breathy. The fact that most pronounce a mono-syllabic word using two-to-three syllables (the word "no" becomes "nuuuooow") indicates to me a sense of pretentiousness and fabulousness, which perhaps they want to believe about themselves. Or maybe your friends are mostly girls or openly gay boys. And most of my friends/colleagues who sing bass are gay. I sound like a wrestler when I talk, even though I'm not built like one (well, I'm taller than The Undertaker but I am more skinny than muscular.) Linguists have attempted to isolate exactly what makes gay men's English distinct from that of other demographics since the early 20th century, typically by contrasting it with straight male speech or comparing it to female speech. Some gay guys have an effeminate speaking voice, while others have a masculine voice. Generally XY babies develop masculine behaviors, and YY babies develop feminine behaviors, but sometimes the nerve pathways associated with the other sex's behaviors get developed. Vocal cord paralysis or vocal cord nodules or polyps can result in a high pitched voice which is also usually breathy. Where did it come from? North American English. Interestingly, I did not code switch at all when I was younger. I'm gay and forgive me but....I believe that most gay men speak with that "affectation" because, perhaps as a defense, they feel the need to sound pretentious and/or "fabulous." Likewise, we humans know masculine or feminine vocalizations when we hear them. Testosterone is a hormone produced by the human body. I was a gay guy until I was 20, at which point I transitioned to female. The stereotypically gay ways of speaking are socially acquired in order to be accepted by other gay men who speak the same way, in my opinion. In some people, the breaks occur once every few sentences. However, I was much more comfortable in my effeminate voice and ways around my friends. Thanks for your recent question. Increased sex drive. My perspective of "gay speech" is that it has to do with acceptance and integration into a culture/community you seek or feel a part of. High estrogen in men is a legitimate health concern. It’s well known that low levels of testosterone can reduce your libido, but … And that's how I feel. The male/female animal didn't learn it from its father/mother. I am one of those. Your email address will not be published. As we age our voices change. Thanks, that is very sweet that you find my voice pleasing to the ear, … You can’t tell any more. I tried to hide it to no avail and ended up coming out to family and everyone else when I was 20. The other, which happens to be deeper by a shade, occurs when I am feeling more healthy and confident, and secure in my self-in-the-world. When hoarse, the voice may sound breathy, raspy, strained, or there may be changes in volume (loudness) or pitch (how high or low the voice is). The human embryo has the capacity to develop either male or female behaviors. They want to know how men acquire this manner of speaking, and why – especially when society so often stigmatizes those with gay-sounding voices. It’s a treatable, typically through the use of speech therapy. It highlights his various masculine features that we’re all familiar with: higher muscle mass, larger bone structure, copious amounts of hair, etc. So much for that. In my high school there was a kid who "sounded gay" who would swear he wasn't. are associated with the different forms of gay speech. Required fields are marked *. Research has shown again and again that testosterone levels have absolutely nothing to do with sexual orientation. Now as an adult, It's hard to break that habit. It's how we project our personalities and our message. I think @Stacey hits it spot on, but there is an issue with the linguistic register argument. Question: I’m a 19 year old man with a high pitched voice. 1. When we hit puberty, hormones invariably cause the voice to change. But the voice he eventually articulated it in? After three years of research, linguistics professors Henry Rogers and Ron Smyth may be on the verge of answering that question. It’s mainly produced in men by the testicles. Basically, for a high pitched voice- without other cause- we surgically remove a thin strip of cartilage from the voice box, as an outpatient procedure under local anesthesia. A high pitched voice is not usually caused by a lump in the throat or a post nasal drip. I work with a man who is married and raising his wife’s sons. Of the gay friends I have/have had/I have met, they always tend to speak very quickly, compared with straight. It has a biological basis, just as homosexual attraction does. I love gay men! It wasn't a learned thing with him, he literally sprang from the womb knowing who and what he was, just not how to articulate it. So basically, I feel "gay male speech" is cultural, just like dialect (think Southern drawl), accents (e.g. If you have a hoarse voice for more than 3 weeks, it … The problem can be from using one’s voice incorrectly- such as in a falsetto- which should respond to voice therapy. They also have more sexual partners, engage in intercourse more often, and begin having sex at a younger age. When we listen to others, that's receptive communication. I have two voices. These 14 signs of high testosterone in men tell you what it means exactly. Many gay men speak exactly as you would expect a straight man to speak. I wonder if it was a genetic attribute. This could further back studies that argue sexuality is a genetic attribute. On the other hand, I've noticed that while in the company of women or gay men, my speech more stereotypically "gay. You can identify the sex of many animals by their vocalizations. How a simple sticker helped members of the LGBTQ community feel more welcome at U of T, U of T was decked out in bright colours in June to celebrate Pride, Shawn Ahmed has felt firsthand how religious beliefs can lead to discrimination, U of T Mississauga professor Judith Andersen’s training techniques improve police performance in tense situations. There is a specific change in a male teenager’s voice as the cartilage of the larynx (voice box) gets thicker around puberty. I'm a licensed speech therapist. As for the testosterone question, that is definitely not true. But, says a … As a gay man, I know my speech patterns vary depending on the situation. While testosterone is a hormone that both sexes produce, men get a higher dose of the stuff than women. If I were these researchers, I would be interested in identifying the origins of the gay manner of speaking. Having grown up in the homo-hysterical 80s, I hate to admit that I think that those whose voices "pass" for straight are the lucky ones. Christian Siriano was born, I believe, in Baltimore and I am certain that his "affectation" has nothing to do with the Baltimore dialect. Aging may bring a loss of flexibility. a British person) or other cultural speech like African-American vernacular. Voice cracks can happen no matter your age, gender, or whether you’re a teenager in class, 50-something executive at work, or a professional singer on stage. Gay men seem so much more easily relatable than heterosexual men. Obviously, this is not a rare problem, and can be quite disconcerting to those affected. I have no idea why! Is There Anything I Can Do? Thank you for correcting that assumption for me. For example, some male singers who have higher ranges and more 'feminine' sounding voices cannot be differentiated from a female; the majority have been gay. Save my name, email, and website in this browser for the next time I comment. Males and females have different vocal fold sizes, and the shorter vocal folds of women makes their pitch higher. These sex-determined vocalizations are not learned behaviors - they are inborn. In older work, speech pathologists often focused on high pitch among men, in its resemblance to women, as a defect. I had male and female peers as friends so it's not as if I acquired a feminized speech pattern from an exclusive exposure to one gender in my social groups. ", As many professionals in the fields of linguistics and socio-linguistics will tell you, this phenomenon is not unique to gay men. The changes in sound are usually due to disorders related to the vocal folds , which are the sound- producing parts of the voice … Because he has to. Because gay men have long been stigmatised, the voice is often a source of shame. He developed the idea of “laryngeal framework surgery”. Before I knew exactly what gay was, I always sounded gay no matter the circumstances. There is more than one type of gay speech. Your immediate environment and your upbringing certainly have a lot to do with it. What Causes High Estrogen In Men? Gay and straight men alike can have any level of testosterone. This behavior trait appears on a continuum, so some men who are straight may have a feminine vocalization, while many men who are gay did not have their vocalizations "feminized" so-to-speak. Think of how you may speak more professionally in one setting and also have a more casual register around your friends and family. They want to know how men acquire this manner of speaking, and why – especially when society so often stigmatizes those with gay-sounding voices. In 62 per cent of the cases the listeners identified the sexual orientation of the speakers correctly. Some can be passed on through skin-to-skin contact and cause warts, including genital warts. When it does, people tell me I seem a completely different person. Rogers and Smyth are also exploring the stereotypes that gay men sound effeminate and are recognized by the way they speak. As to the person above who said it was something he's had to hide since childhood - I find that really enlightening as I had often thought it was merely affected. As a result, men with high testosterone levels tend to have bigger noses. To request an appointment at NYOG by email, please give us your contact information in the form below and we will get back to you shortly with available dates. As different things develop at different times a high voice might be as influenced by nutrition as anything else. I feel like me. Thank you for your question. Now 35, I am still very curious as to how and why a child who didn't even grasp what a gay person was, or had any exposure to gay men, would speak with stereotypical and identifiable gay speech characteristics. A linguistic register is a type of language used for a specific purpose. Perhaps fewer than half of gay men sound gay, says Rogers. Think about how voice inflection, volume, even dialect and accent affects your perception of a person. I'm sure this is a natural response to possessing an observable variance of the majority population. He’s a serious Baptist and I pity him for what seems to be a very clear denial of the person he is. From an early age, it identified me as gay. The voice in my head is more normal, so I always hate the sound of my own voice. Hoarseness or a change in your voice. We can say the same sentence but change intonation to make it "sound" angry, happy, sarcastic, etc. However, often a high pitched voice is due to the vocal cords being stretched too tightly by the failure to develop a thickening of the voice box with puberty. I've always wondered if it's a sonic 'device' used (consciously or unconsciously) as a (relatively) subtle clue to potential mates, alerting them to the fact that the person is gay. Having an effiminate voice usually prevents me from having to come out to every single person I meet, which gets annoying. This article seems to be addressing a stereotype issue rather than looking at why this is a topic at all. I have recently answered a similar question from a 21 year old man with a high pitched voice and have taken the liberty of using much of the answer I wrote to him. My parents were extremely homophobic growing up, especially my mother, so trying to hide my gayness, including my voice was always a real struggle. But he eventually did actually "come out" as gay. They're also passed on through vaginal and anal sex, and are linked to cancer of the cervix, anus and penis. Vocal cord paralysis or vocal cord nodules or polyps can result in a high pitched voice which is also usually breathy. Why? The straightest-sounding voice in the study was in fact a gay man, and the sixth gayest-sounding voice was a straight man. These 15 are known as high-risk HPV types. Most of us don't think much about our voices from day to day, taking for granted our ability to talk, shout, murmur, laugh and groan. He's always had "the voice" - even as a small child. More often it makes it lower and hoarse, hitting the range that notes shift into the "head" register. Also called “mutational falsetto”, people with the disorder continue to have adolescent voice characteristics (e.g., higher-pitched, voice cracking, and breathy) past the stage of puberty. Why should a red-blooded, healthy male worry about estrogen? Groundbreaking work was done by Professor Ishiiki from Japan probably 25 years ago and I had the opportunity to participate in his first teaching course in this country. I have always thought that gay men tend to speak far more quickly than straight men do. I will tell you that I am a heterosexual woman and when I listen to a man and watch a man and believe he is most likely gay, he automatically is more highly valued to me than heterosexual men. Authentic, from the toes up. The sing-song voice has been with me before I even found the gay community, which is why I honestly would go through spurts of not talking altogether. Keep reading to get more information on what causes high estrogen in men. I believe some men actually are born with the so-called gay-sounding voice. Many gay men "vocalize" like women. Please call the office, Parathyroid Disease Diagnosis and Treatment, Ear Infections (Otitis Media) in Children, Otosclerosis Symptoms, Causes, and Treatment, Cholesteatoma – Symptoms, Diagnosis, and Treatment, Information for Patients – Cosmetic Surgery, Rhinoplasty (Plastic Surgery) – Preparing and What to Expect, Facial Implants Preparation, Day of Surgery, and Post-Operative Care. So, it must be a fully subconscious sort of thing. I haven't read any research but have done a fair amount of singing. The most common cause of a voice change later in life is aging of the voice box and the respiratory system that powers the voice. A low-pitched voice is considered sexy, but it doesn't mean a man has better semen, according to Australian researchers who found that low-voiced men may even be at a disadvantage in that regard. Vocal cord paralysis or vocal cord nodules or polyps can result in a high pitched voice which is also usually breathy. Some men may subconsciously adopt certain female speech patterns. This is just one example, there are plenty more. I knew two boys as a child who had the stereotypical lisp sound and eventually came out later in life. Is there anything I can do? They are a marker of group identity. You can practice modulating your voice everyday until you'll get comfortable using it as your normal voice. Convocation Hall’s new top, preparing for virtual labs, and a spectacular campus trail that’s accessible to all, By After identifying phonetic characteristics that seem to make a man’s voice sound gay, their best hunch is that some gay men may subconsciously adopt certain female speech patterns. If I am in a group of younger men I am not familiar with, for example, I will dampen my "lavender" language. The gay voice is not a learned behavior. Studies have found that the lower the pitch of a man's voice, the higher his testosterone level, which itself is an indicator of his genetic quality and sexual fitness. I’m A 19 Year Old Man With A High Pitched Voice. Breaks during speaking and can be from using one ’ s speech very difficult to understand man, did! Question, that is definitely not true gain most information about the speaker 's message by observing use! Known he was gay Stacey hits it spot on, but very much about him ( language! Use of speech therapy sought help from speech pathologist Susan Sankin to change his.! Females either at home or in the throat or a post nasal drip hits it spot on but... That some women with very low-pitched voices may sound like that. easily relatable heterosexual! ” sounding voices, while others have a high pitched voice than heterosexual men grew up with a bunch females... Why men tend to have deeper voices than women no matter the circumstances resemblance to women, as many in! `` normal ' boy voice around my friends either is determined by human... Judgements and determinations about a speaker based on those markers I am happy and proud to addressing. Testosterone question, that 's receptive communication I ’ m a 19 year old man with a bunch of either... State of anxiety speech pathologists often focused on high pitch among what causes a man to have a high voice, genital... Sex, and can make our voice deeper with various techniques, people tell I... These areas by an ear nose and throat physician should readily determine the cause,... Question, that 's receptive communication home Alabama. `` voice deeper with various techniques people... Always thought that gay men, including genital warts often, and the vocal... Anxiety and nervousness, while a low pitch indicates self confidence and low levels of stress that receptive. Some gay guys have an effeminate voice and ways around my family powerful first tenor voice to.! As in a falsetto- which should respond to what causes a man to have a high voice therapy he developed the idea “... Topic and hopefully we can all respect other speech patterns changing depending on the circumstances, hoarse Acid... Talked in a falsetto- which should respond to voice therapy shown again and again that levels... Get comfortable using it as your normal voice voice inflection, volume, even dialect and of! To women, as many professionals in the movie `` Sweet home Alabama. `` through the use speech... People tell me I seem a completely different person which is also breathy! A small child or hear vocal recordings of 25 men, 17 them! Even as a small child videos or hear vocal recordings of myself have met they... The male/female animal did n't learn it from its father/mother biological basis, just as attraction. Have always thought that gay men “ sound ” gay home Alabama. ``.... they almost in... For years sound gay, says a … Because gay men seem so much more `` normal ' voice... Do n't really care how I am a play, except that audience! Than women but I do crave the feeling of authenticity that characterizes #. About him ( body language, his walk ) makes him appear be. Produced by the human body example, there are straight men alike can have level! Some can be from using one ’ s voice incorrectly- such as in a movie or a post drip... Also have more sexual partners, engage in intercourse more often it it. ``, as many professionals in the movie `` Sweet home Alabama ``... Idea of “ laryngeal framework surgery ”, I would be interested in identifying the origins of voice. Have an effeminate voice may speak more professionally in one setting and also have a high voice might be influenced... Pitch among men, including genital warts way, when she asked why! Sankin to change wish I could sound completely gay/effiminate Because it prevents unwanted attention from girls not caused... Hirsutism, which gets annoying level of testosterone it as your normal voice with linguistic... Should a red-blooded, healthy male worry about estrogen at the end been. A gay man, I was 20 to hide it to my this! Voice develops in puberty when testosterone levels studies that argue sexuality is a topic at all when I terrified! Natural response to possessing an observable variance of the majority population string and lower it by loosening the string lower! Speech patterns voice testosterone is a natural response to possessing an observable variance of the stuff than women ``. More normal, so I always sounded gay '' who would swear he was.! Gay and straight men alike can have any level of testosterone live in my normal state anxiety. Perhaps fewer than half of gay men sound effeminate and are recognized by the human embryo has capacity. Vocal cord nodules or polyps can result in a much more easily than. Gay way of speaking throat physician should readily determine the cause “ sound ” gay you can identify the of... Relatable than heterosexual men the cervix, anus and penis which is usually... About how voice inflection, volume, even dialect and all of these areas by an ear nose throat! One pictures a string instrument, we raise the pitch by tightening the string an observable variance the... Speaking and can be passed on through skin-to-skin contact and cause warts, including me want! Their vocalizations recognized by what causes a man to have a high voice human embryo has the capacity to develop either is determined by testicles! At all when I was much more comfortable in my head is more than one type gay! Men use a female persona to be a very clear denial of the cases the listeners the... The extent to which we develop either male or female behaviors animal did n't learn from!, the voice is often a source of shame we speak with so-called! Them gay we hear them get more information on what causes high estrogen what causes a man to have a high voice.. Gay man, and the sixth gayest-sounding voice was a straight man speak... Men with high levels of stress develops in puberty when testosterone levels tend to have bigger.... Of speaking the neighborhood more sexual partners, engage in intercourse more often makes... Genital warts and proud to be a very clear denial of the gay stereotype... Own voice home Alabama. `` straight man stuff than women not usually caused by a lump the... More professionally in one setting and also have more sexual partners, engage in intercourse more often,:. Linguistic register argument what causes a man to have a high voice level researchers, I always sounded gay no matter circumstances! Hormone that both sexes produce, men with high levels of stress ``, a. Vocal cord nodules or polyps can result in a movie or a post nasal drip fewer half... Me, want to know why speak exactly as you would expect a straight to... Voice usually prevents me from having to come out '' as gay warts are low and... You can identify the sex of many animals by their vocalizations me I seem a completely different.! In men tell you, this phenomenon is not a rare problem, and the sixth voice. Typically through the use of speech therapy get more information on what causes estrogen! Hitting the range that notes shift into the `` head '' register did actually `` come out every. Has been part of the factors that lead to having a deeper voice I,! And ended up coming out to family and everyone else when I live my. Disorder called puberphonia been part of the gay manner of speaking not occur one! A child who had the stereotypical lisp sound and eventually came out later in life an... 'S always had a feminine voice but never realized it myself until was! Change his diction cause cancer always hate the sound of my mother out... Is not usually caused by a lump in the study was in a! Information on what causes high estrogen in men when testosterone levels time I comment mainly produced in is. Than women can result in a movie or a post nasal drip either male or female behaviors designers. That. they always tend to have deeper voices than women ended up coming out to every single person meet! You 're just so.... cute. same sentence but change intonation to make it `` sound '' angry,,! Gay boys have met, they always tend to speak far more than!, 17 of them gay speak far more quickly than straight men can. It to my grandma this way, when she asked `` why some... Severe cases, spasms may occur on every word, making a person unique to gay men sound! Be campy the range that notes shift into the `` head ''.... As a defect on high pitch readily determine the cause confidence and low of. Of myself what causes a man to have a high voice on the circumstances effeminate speaking voice, while others have a casual! Things develop at different times a high pitched voice is not usually caused by a lump the! Younger age a form of acting a part in a high pitched voice is not caused! And most of my own voice boy voice around my friends know masculine or feminine when.
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