Types of sexuality
There are some common labels that people use to identify their sexuality. This isn’t necessarily defined by who they have sex with, it’s also about how they feel and how they choose to identify themselves. All of our services are for people of any sexuality
- Straight/Heterosexual Attracted mostly to people of the opposite sex or gender.
- Gay/Homosexual Attracted mostly to people of the same sex or gender (this used to refer to boys / men but now often refers to girls / women as well).
- Lesbian Attracted mostly to people of the same sex or gender (refers to women).
- Bisexual Attracted to both men and women.
- Pansexual Attracted to romantic and sexual partners of any gender, sex or sexual identity.
- Polysexual Attracted to romantic and sexual partners of many but not all genders, sexes or sexual identities.
- Asexual Do not experience sexual attraction and / or does not desire to act on sexual attraction.
Some people also choose the labels ‘queer’ or ‘fluid’ as a way of expressing themselves by their own personal feelings.
For more information about sexuality, coming out or advice about relationships from a teenage perspective visit the childline website.
How to cope if you're bullied for your sexuality
Some people do not understand that being gay, lesbian or bisexual is normal. Nobody has the right to tell someone else how to live their life or pick on them because of who they’re attracted to.
If someone bullies you because you’re gay, lesbian or bisexual, it’s their problem, not yours, and they should not get away with it. This is called homophobic bullying.
Bullying can take many forms, including stares, looks, whispers, threats and violence. If you’re being bullied because you’re gay, lesbian or bisexual, tell someone you trust. This could be a teacher, friend, your parents, or a helpline.
Schools have a legal duty to ensure homophobic bullying is dealt with. Find out more from the Anti-Bullying Alliance on where to find help if you’ve been bullied for advice.
You’ll find information about talking to teachers and parents, and the contact details of anti-bullying organisations and helplines. Talking to someone who is understanding will always help if you have worries or questions as you’ll feel supported and more confident.
- EACH: Educational Action Challenging Homophobia This is a charity for young people and adults affected by homophobia. It has a helpline for young people, parents or teachers who want to report homophobic, biphobic or transphobic bullying. Call the EACH actionline on 0808 1000 143 on weekdays, 9am to 4.30pm. Calls are free from landlines and most mobiles.
- Stonewall: Education for All Stonewall is a charity that campaigns for equal rights for lesbians, gay men, bisexual and trans people. Its Education for All campaign tackles homophobic, biphobic and transphobic bullying in schools across the UK. You can find case studies, facts and figures about bullying in schools, and advice for young people and teachers on the charity’s website.
- Galop The LGBT+ anti-violence charity can help if you experience homophobia, transphobia or biphobia wherever it occurs. Call their national helpline on 0800 999 5428 or contact them online.
- Childline The charity offers a safe and confidential place for you to talk about anything. No problem is too big or too small. Call one of their counsellors free on 0800 1111, chat to them online or send an email.
Support in Leicester, Leicestershire and Rutland for sexuality
- The LGBT Centre Leicester Lesbian Gay Bisexual and Transgender Centre is a voluntary organisation established to support lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender people in Leicester, Leicestershire and Rutland.
- The Adult Trans Project The Adult Trans Project has been developed to support individuals aged 18+ who identify anywhere under the trans umbrella or who are questioning their gender identity. It also aims to offer support, guidance and information to the families of trans adults, as well as organisations working with these individuals, and raise awareness of trans lives and experiences within Leicester, Leicestershire and Rutland.
Information from the NHS website is licensed under the Open Government Licence v3.0