Everyone is a sexual being whether they are sexually active or not. Sexuality is an expression of who you are as a human being. You experience and express your sexuality through your thoughts, fantasies, desires, beliefs, attitudes, values, activities, roles and relationships.
Your sexuality is a combination of your:
- biological sex (whether you were born as a male or female)
- gender identity (your psychological sense of being male or female)
- social gender role (the extent to which you conform to what is regarded in society as feminine or masculine behaviour)
- sexual orientation (the emotional, romantic, sexual or affectionate attraction you have to a particular sex)
Three sexual orientations are commonly recognised, heterosexual, gay/lesbian and bi-sexual.
Sexual orientation is different from sexual behaviour. Sexual behaviour is how people behave in a sexual situation, individuals may or may not display their sexual orientation in their sexual behaviour. Being heterosexual, lesbian, gay or bi-sexual is not a preference and is not chosen. It is integral to a persons life and their identity rather than being a lifestyle.
Your sexual orientation reflects a range of factors that determine who you are sexually attracted to and who you fall in love with.