Everyone is attracted to different kinds of people.
This can be either of the opposite sex, the same sex, or to both.
Being lesbian, gay or bisexual isn’t a choice, it’s the way someone feels inside and is natural to that person. It may take a while for you to work out your own feelings.
Part of our sexual identity can be working out which sex (boys or girls) we feel most attracted to. Figuring out what’s normal to you can sometimes take time. Unlike exams, there’s no time limit to how long it can take you.
Experimenting and Exploring
As you grow up and develop sexual feelings, it’s completely normal to think about the same sex and the opposite sex. Some people know who they fancy, while others may experiment while they are exploring their sexuality. There is no need to feel pressured into putting a label on how you feel.
For some young people coming to terms with the fact that they might be attracted to someone of the same sex can be very difficult. If you feel like this, remember that there are plenty of people who can help. There are some services and projects especially for young people who identify as lesbian, gay or bisexual or who are exploring their sexuality.
About one in ten people are gay, lesbian or bisexual. It’s unkind to make jokes about people who are gay, lesbian or bisexual – this is called homophobic bullying (check out our Bullying & Hate: Just The Facts to find out more). Joking and teasing makes it even harder for people to feel comfortable enough to just be themselves. Homophobic bullying is now a reportable hate crime and is a punishable offence.
How to get help
Some people realise they are gay, lesbian or bisexual at an early age, while others may not know until later in life. Some young people may also be confused about their sexual identity. It can help to talk to other people who are going through the same thing. There are support groups available for LGBT or undecided young people.
You could contact:
Find help in your local area
Find out what services are available to you in your area. Remember your school nurse is always there to give you confidential help and support.