The term sexuality is defined by Webster as the quality or state of being sexual. This not only refers to eroticism and sexual activity, but also one’s sexual orientation.
Sexual orientation is the term used to describe whether a person feels sexual and physical desire for people of the opposite gender, same gender, or both genders.
Gay, Lesbian and Bisexual are word used to describe someone’s sexual orientation. This should not be confused with gender identity, which is often related to transgender people.
Here are some simple definitions:
BUT REMEMBER! Just because these terms exist, does not make it necessary to label others or yourself. While definition directs us, we do not have to pigeon hole ourselves. When in doubt about someone’s identity, ASK!
Commonly asked question
1. Are people born gay? - While some theories establish that being gay is biological, others asset it is a result of environmental factors (e.g. family environment, role models etc.) Nonetheless, these theories cannot adequately answer why one is gay, lesbian or bisexual.
2. Am I gay? - Discovering your sexuality is often a complex and stressful experience. The gay and lesbian identity development model describes the stages someone goes through before discovering orientation. But don’t forget! This is a question only you can answer.
3. Now what? - Accepting that you have feelings or attractions for the same sex can bring fear, worry or even confusion. Being gay, lesbian and bisexual is still not generally accepted, making coming out a more difficult process. However if done with care, having a supportive friend or family member can make life a lot easier for you as a gay, lesbian or bisexual person.
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