How do I know my sexual orientation?
Not everyone knows their sexual orientation or how to label themselves. If you feel this way, know that it’s common and you’re not alone.
What if I’m unsure about my sexual orientation?
This is really common, and it doesn’t mean that anything is wrong with you. For some people, understanding their sexual orientation can take years, or even a lifetime. Often, people find that they're “questioning" for a while, or that none of the labels used to describe sexual orientation fit them.
Some people may try a label to see if it fits, and then change it to another one if it doesn’t. This is okay, too. You don’t have to decide on one label, and it’s okay if someday in the future you feel differently from how you feel now.
Some people struggle with coming out to others or even themselves because they’re afraid of homophobia and sexual orientation discrimination. These are very real issues that many LGBTQ people face.
If you’ve ever asked yourself “Am I gay/bisexual?” you’re not alone. Talking with a trusted friend or family member may help you figure it out.
Can other people tell what my sexual orientation is?
No. A person only knows your sexual orientation if you tell them. Sexual orientation describes how you feel inside, and only you know what it’s like to be you.
Some people may think they can guess if a person is lesbian, gay, or bisexual based on superficial factors like how they look, dress, or behave. These are stereotypes, or very simplified judgments, about how lesbian, gay, and bisexual people act. But just like heterosexuals, there are many different ways that homosexual and bisexual people look, dress, and behave. Using stereotypes to label someone else’s sexual orientation can be inaccurate and hurtful.