Haggard is describes his current status thus:
In an interview with The Associated Press this month, Mr. Haggard said he was selling insurance and debt-reduction software and that his sexual identity was hard to pin down. “The stereotypical boxes don’t work for me,” he said. “My story’s got some gray areas in it. And, of course, I’m sad about that, but it’s the reality.”A person I know who has gender identity issues and has investigated the situation with therapists says Haggard's case is pretty clear. Ted Haggart is a homosexual male - a male person who is sexually attracted to other males. His confusion comes from the extreme religious pressure and his won beliefs that say homosexuality is a total sin.
Haggard not only bought the line that homosexuality is a total sin, but he also preached it, was surrounded by others who preached it and enforced it. One of the best social techniques for instilling a belief system in someone else is to have them go out and evangelize for it. Haggard has done that in spades. Yet his own body is telling him that the sex objects he is attracted to are male, not female. His apparent confusion is from cognitive dissonance between public recognition of his sexual nature and his strong beliefs about how unacceptable it is. He has found that he is himself - by birth - attracted to other members of his own gender.
He has been forced to accept the truth of his own attraction to others of his own gender, but the utter repression of that truth by extremist conservative fundamentalist religion and his own society has left him, as he says, with his sexual orientation "hard to pin down." Of course it has.
Society has a very simplified idea of gender identity and sexual orientation. There is a general very fundamental belief that a person is born either male or female, and that if your body is one or the other your personal identity and your sexual orientation must fit the stereotypical male - female images. Then, using that assumption, the doctor can look at a child at the moment of birth and determine if that child is male or female, and the assumption is that the child's sexual identity and the sex objects to whom that child will be attracted MUST fit the stereotype. That's fine for most of us because most of us DO fit the stereotype. That's why it is a persistent stereotype.
But the body is much more complicated than that. Gender is more behavior than anatomy, and learning which gender a person is sexually attracted to is a process that does not display itself clearly (except perhaps to a few experts) until puberty. All the social repression in the world is not going to deter the body from forming the sexual orientation it demands. That is also true, by the way, of the gender identity of the personality. That, too, is more variable than is commonly believed, and gender identity may not conform to the anatomy OR to the sexual identity, either. Gender identity may also be fixed before birth the way sexual orientation is, but since there is no clearly overt behavior (that is, not clear to others) that results from it, it is even less identified that sexual orientation differences. The fact that this also forms a strong personal drive is demonstrated by the number of individuals who have had gender reassignment surgery.
The difficulty is that people with such out-of-the-mainstream difficulties matching society's stereotyped sexual behaviors are different from the rest of us in ways that appear quite fundamental to the outsider. Most people are frightened by such apparent basic differences which have no obviously discernible cause. So traditionally they have been shunned. Religions are inherently organizations designed to maintain an accepted, traditional set of rules to make society function safely in easy-to-understand ways. They have always been responsible for organizing the practice of shunning outsiders and malcontents. If your idea of creating the ideal society is to find the traditions that have persisted and training everyone to follow them, then you are going to be attracted to religions that do that.[*]
I would speculate that Ted Haggart is a person with an attraction - that is, a sexual orientation - towards other men, and that his family and friends find his desired sexual orientation unacceptable. To keep that family and those friends, he joined a fundamentalist religion that taught "the rules. No Exceptions. Keep it simple." He is clearly also a person, probably with a male self-identity, who has a strong sex drive. A strong sex-drive is one of the factors that drives many men into leadership positions.
In order to become a leader and rise in leadership roles, a person has to identify with those he or she leads and direct them in those directions. Otherwise, they will reject him. So he had to not only learn among other things) the gender and sexual mores of his fundamentalist Christian Church and impress their importance on other people. His success at doing this is obvious from his position as Pastor of the New Life Church and his wider reputation in the evangelical community.
His internal conflict between what he had been taught and then taught to others about sexual identity and sexual orientation drove him to great success. The energy he had from repressing his sexual orientation so strongly was displayed in his behavior, but that very energy from that conflict also reached out and destroyed his behavioral repression mechanisms.
Now he is left,exposed to his former parishioners, as a hypocrite and one of those very homosexual individuals that he spent years decrying and repressing. He is also (and again I speculate) an individual who focuses on behavior as the method of control of himself. If he thinks something should not be done, he doesn't do it, and in fact will ostentatiously attempt to do the very opposite in public to help get public assistance in controlling himself. If he believes that the behavior is wrong, he does not want to analyze it and (horror) find some core rationality in that behavior.
So that has left him with no mental and emotional tools to help him adjust to his newly publicly exposed "weakness." The concepts of gender identity and sexual orientation are not found in the Bible except to decry those who are out of the mainstream. Even if now the concepts are presented to him, the personal barriers he has set against accepting them must be tremendous.
It should be no surprise, then, that the closest he has been able to come to understanding why his coreligionists are now shunning him is his quoted statement "The stereotypical boxes don’t work for me," he said. “My story’s got some gray areas in it. And, of course, I’m sad about that, but it’s the reality.” He accepts that he was "weak" (meaning that his self-repression methods could not hold down his built-in sexual orientation permanently) and is now disgraced. He is that close to comprehension, but he literally can't accept his own personal reality yet.
[*] Another type of religion is less focused on controlling the behavior of others and more on understanding what the inherent social situation is and adapting the best practices from tradition to what works. These denominations are also rooted in tradition, but apply research and logic to the social effects of that tradition. The behavior they enforce is more closely related to social reality than is that of fundamentalist rule-givers. This is harder work, and most people just want clear, simple rules and to not have to bother talking about them.