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Sexual Orientation

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Who we 'like' or are 'attracted to', or who we 'fall in love with' depends on our sexual orientation. Sexual orientation is the name given to the 'type' of relationship you have or are interested in having...

It is something you have to discover for yourself as you experience friendships and relationships with different people.


If you are attracted to members of the opposite sex (e.g. girl/boy relationships), your sexual orientation is described as 'straight' or 'heterosexual'. If you are attracted to people of the same sex as you (e.g. boy/boy or girl/girl relationships), your sexual orientation is described as 'gay', or 'lesbian' (if you're a girl), or 'homosexual'.


Some gay people spend their whole lives being attracted to members of the same sex, while others recognise these feelings later in life. Being attracted to someone of the same sex is really okay, it's not like it changes the person you are inside. One other kind of sexual orientation is 'bisexuality'. People who are bisexual (both guys and girls) prefer to have relationships with men or women.



It's no big deal!

It really doesn't matter who you are attracted to or have relationships with, as long as you're happy. Some people do get a hard time if they are gay or attracted to people of the same sex, because some people in society think you can only love someone from the opposite sex. The thing is to remember it's your life, and you have the right to love who you want to love. There are heaps of support groups out there if you find you're having a hard time with your sexuality.

To contact Youthline ring 0800 376633, to go to the Rainbow Youth website click here.

There is also a great new website called 'Curious' with tons of information - you can visit this website by going to http://www.curious.org.nz