What does ‘bisexual’ mean?
The word bisexual describes a person who is attracted to both more than one gender.
It is normal to question your sexuality and part of growing up is discovering and learning about yourself. It is also normal to have feelings towards other people and for this to mean finding yourself attracted to more than one gender identity.
Am I old enough to know?
Everyone is different and there is no right or wrong age to realise you are bisexual. Sexuality can be fluid and you may be attracted to different people at different times in your life.
Young people are often told that they don’t know themselves well enough or should wait until they are older before they decide. However, many young people say they have known for a long time that they feel ‘different’ to others and they are aware of their attraction to people of more than one gender. at a young age. It’s okay to feel like this and it is okay to change your mind. Sexuality does not need to be fixed forever – for some people it will be, and for others it might shift over time.
What do bisexual people look like?
There is often a myth that bisexual people are either lesbian or gay men who have not yet decided. This is untrue and bisexual people should not feel a pressure to "choose" a gender identity to be attracted to. Straight people are not defined just by who they are attracted to, so there is no reason why you should be. Stereotypes don’t really define any individual; we are much too diverse for that! You can be exactly the person you want to be and should never feel pressure to act or look a certain way.
Is it normal?
There are still some messages out there that make us believe that it is not okay or normal to be attracted to people of more than one gender. Some societies and communities do not accept this difference. It is completely normal to have feelings for people who have either the same or a different gender identity to your own. We can offer support and advice to help you feel more comfortable about who you are.
sOME uSEFUL INFO
- Bisexual – A person who is emotionally and/or physically attracted to people of more than one gender or regardless of gender. Historically definitions of bisexual refer to ‘an attraction towards men and women’ however many bisexual people recognise that there are more than two genders.
- Pansexual – A person who is emotionally and/or sexually attracted to people of more than one gender or regardless of gender. Some people use the term pansexual rather than bisexual in order to be more explicitly inclusive of non-binary gender identities.
- Queer – An umbrella term sometimes used for diverse sexual minorities that are not heterosexual. It may be used to challenge the idea of labels and categories such as lesbian, gay, bisexual. It is important to note that it is an in-group term, and may be considered offensive to some people.
There are many misconceptions about bisexuality which can often be challenging. For this reason on 23rd September each year we celebrate Bi Visibility Day to improve the visitbility of people who are bisexual. We are collecting the voices of young bisexual people. You can read our case studies here. If you would like to contribute your story then please email us firstname.lastname@example.org.