It had to happen, "homophobia", so-called, has developed into a new hyper-version of itself that requires an entirely new approach from the psychiatric profession.
Cases of extreme homophobia have been known to psychiatry for a long time but, not until now has the new strain been properly diagnosed. And no case ever required actual hospitalisation.... until recently.
Explained Dr. Jock Manwaring of the Tavistock Institute's department for mind research known as the Care For Mankind Centre...
"I was referred to the case by my esteemed colleague Dr. Ernst Fastbender and, after much consultation with doctors treating the patient at Blair Asylum, I investigated the case myself and subsequently submitted a paper to the British Journal of Psychiatry. I have to stress that this is, by no stretch of the imagination, the first case of its kind. I personally have dealt with many such cases in my career; but this is indubitably the best example so far... and we are very lucky to have it. It will afford us much useful insight in the treatment of sanity... I mean insanity. We have decided to call this mental disease "Homophobicmania" and proper medication is currently being at our laboratories in Zurich to tackle it. It is of no real danger to the community, I must stress. The Homophobicmanic is a danger only to himself.
The case involves Irishman Seamus Bottomly, formerly of Dublin Ireland who came to live in England with his family when still a child. After graduating from college he decided to make his own way in London. Seamus took a makeshift job as a navvy. But, being of slight build and with exceedingly blond hair he found this work unsuitable and grew tired of being teased by his workmates about his appearance.
Seamus later found employment as a hotel bellhop. In his free time alas he found it difficult to meet girls as dancing was not his scene; he did not care much for modern music either which seemed to him idiotic and exploitative and, not having made any lasting male friends, he tended to avoid pubs as a rule. Besides, he had no taste for intoxicating liquor as it was against his religious principles.
Thus, the young man spent all his idle hours by himself, reading books, studying for the day when he would attend Cambridge University, and surfing the internet.
Mostly, he watched video films on his enormous flat TV that took up almost half of one wall of the tiny front room of his Chelsea flat. His, was a solitary life.
Now nearing his twenty-first Seamus began to develop homophobic reactions. These were many and varied and grew in intensity gradually interfering with his normal life. He would refuse to pick up suitcases or bags for instance at work as it involved bending down and he dreaded anyone looking his backside as he was aware that homosexuals were known to frequent the hotel. His manager would reproach him.
"Seamus, can you please pick up the gentleman's bag and take it to his room? Isn't that what we pay you for?"
Seamus would stand there for a while looking about him to see if anybody else was looking and then he would say:
"You pick it up," before scurrying off.
As he had now been with the Sheep & Staff hotel for nearly two years the management was loathe to sack him; so, instead, sent him to work in their Pig & Whistle lounge bar.
There, Seamus proved efficient but rarely spoke to customers. If anything fell off a table he would only pick it up if nobody was looking or just leave it there until the lounge had emptied. These things did not go unnoticed by staff who taunted him mercilessly. He did complain to the manager that he thought the colour scheme of the lounge was "gaudy and loud" but the manager merely laughed at his suggestion to change it.
"Most of our clients prefer it pink," said he.
Seamus, in an attempt to fortify his male identity, dyed his hair black and took to wearing butch clothing.
One day, he decided that what he really needed was a girlfriend who could show him the ways of the world. Virginity was his problem, years of pent-up libido, the real source of all his anxieties. It was time, on the day of his twenty-first birthday, to solve the problem once and for all. So, later that night he hailed a taxi to a dance club in Soho.
Unfortunately Seamus, who had been taught at a male only Catholic college, was totally unskilled in the ways of courtship and literally propositioned every girl he saw. One of them complained to the bouncers.
When Seamus woke up in hospital he could not remember how he got there. His head was full of lights and shouting and then nothing. He had lost two front teeth and suffered a broken jaw as well as leg injuries. His parents were not able to visit him but did send a "get well" card. When Seamus was released from hospital he hobbled on crutches to his place of work only to receive a letter from the receptionist telling him that he had been "let go".
Now on the dole, Seamus's life began to deteriorate. Not able to afford new films he set to watching the same old ones over and over. These kept him spellbound day and night. He tried to analyse them, to figure out what they meant but only became more confused. He knew they were seldom what they seemed. It was if a hidden agenda was being pursued that he could but faintly decipher.
Sometimes he would forget to eat. When he left his flat it was to walk to the swimming baths where he would float belly up in the water and hastily wrap himself in a towel as soon as he left the pool. In the changing rooms he waited until everyone was gone before he dressed. This ritual would often leave him standing shivering for long periods of time while the pool attendants gazed at him, wondering.
Seamus's condition gradually got worse. He hid all colourful objects in his flat and wore very dark shades indoors when watching his movies. He painted the walls grey and took to buying dowdy, colourless second-hand clothes.
Pink left him trembling with anxiety. He was now convinced anybody who wore pink was homosexual, that hairdressers and filmstars were all of that persuasion and that Muslims wore beards only to hide the fact that they were all gay. Socialists too were gay and many of the most revered politicians were clearly sexually deviants. Gays were everywhere and in everything. They made the films and governed the media. The world was run by them.
Seamus however, knew he was not well. And one fateful morning he talked himself into giving up his delusions. He would change his way of thinking as he was bound for an academic career where such nonsense would be an impediment. He binned his movies and resolved on starting a new life.
He set forth to catch a tube train into town taking care to wear his shades and look to the ground at all times. "What ever you do, do not look up!" he counselled himself as he walked up and down the platform waiting for his train to arrive. Trembling with anxiety he finally made it on board and virtually ran to a window seat where he flung himself down exhausted.
As fate would have it a corpulent man with dyed purple hair, wearing a bright pink shirt and tartan pants sat beside him. At first, he didn't notice as he stared out the window all the time; but when the train suddenly jolted and his glasses flew off Seamus could not help but see that he was sitting beside his worst nightmare.
That's when he fell to the ground in a seizure akin to epilepsy.
"I never laid a hand on him!" protested the man to the conductor. "I have witnesses!"
It is at this point that Seamus found himself hospitalised. He was quickly transferred from Clapham's general to the insane asylum where he was placed in the care of Dr. Fastbender.
Seamus however proved unresponsive to therapy, so he was given Prozac and kept in the intensive care unit. Besides, Fastbender had unearthed no traumas in his past, apart from the recent Soho incident, nor any evidence of mental illness in his family. The patient had led an excessively sheltered life was the only diagnosis he could arrive at. Seamus was a mystery to him; so he contacted the Tavistock Institute immediately who had contracted him to refer unusual cases to them.
Explained Dr. Manwaring: "Seamus is important to us here at the Tavistock because his case tells us how successful.... I mean how... effective... and I stress that word... our culture has been in inculcating gender identity and how far we can go....I mean how far it goes.... in engendering mental confusion in the young leading sometimes to this type of chronic, identity crisis. We now know what works... I mean... what the limits are in creating this type of disorder. The institute can learn much therefore, I stress, from this case for the betterment of mankind and I hope my paper will make this clear to my colleagues."
Seamus had had an adverse reaction to his medical treatment and, some months later, after being discharged from the asylum, and having missed the deadline for his enrolment at Cambridge, he killed himself by jumping off Blackfriar's bridge into the Thames. His body was never recovered.
Shortly before taking his life Seamus removed the black colour from his hair. He wanted to die with the hair he had been born with, he stated in a message left on his laptop.
Seamus's father said: "I don't understand what happened to him. We brought him up to be independent. He was strong and healthy and liked sports. He could make friends easily if he wanted to, but was always a bit of a thinker, a loner. He was a brilliant student, top in all his subjects and would have made a wonderful scholar; but he wanted desperately, he told me, to find out what the real world was like. I guess that was his mistake. I don't understand what happened to him. I'll never understand it. I cannot explain it to myself. Nor can I understand why Dr. Manwaring confiscated my boy's books, movies and laptop. We may have to sue to have them returned."
"Seamus was an angel," explained his mother. "I knew from the start he was not meant for this crazy world. I implored him to go straight to university, but he wouldn't listen. But now he is at peace. One more casualty among thousands of others."