Sexual Health D&G

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LGBT

What is LGBT?

The acronym LGBT has been in use since 1990’s and stands for: Lesbian, Gay, and Bisexual and Transgender. Lots of people fancy people of the same sex as them, being attracted to someone of the same sex is common, normal and makes you who you are. Some may be sure about how they feel, and others may take more time to be sure of their sexual orientation. Everyone is different and there is no right or wrong age to realise you are lesbian, gay or bisexual. Sexual orientation does not need to be fixed forever – for some people it will be, and for others it will be fluid and it might change over time. 
The terms are complex and the following information is only a starting point:

Lesbian

Is the word used to describe a girl or a woman who is romantically and sexually attracted to other girls or women.

Some people know from a young age that they are lesbian, but some people are not sure until they get older and start thinking about relationships. Some girls can also realise that they prefer girls/women even though they have previously had relationships with boys/men. Being attracted to someone of the same sex is completely normal. It is not at all unusual to feel attracted to someone of the same sex and many people experience crushes or very close friendships with someone of the same sex as they are growing up. For lots of people this does mean that they are lesbian.

Further Information

Sexual Health advice for lesbians.

http://www.nhs.uk/Livewell/LGBhealth/Pages/lesbianhealth.aspx

http://www.avert.org/lesbians-bisexual-women-sex.htm

https://www.lgbtyouth.org.uk/yp-lesbian

Gay

Is the word used to describe a boy or a man who is romantically and sexually attracted to other boys or men and it can sometimes be used to describe lesbians.

Some people know from a young age that they are gay, but some people are not sure until they get older and start thinking about relationships. Some boys/men can also realise that they prefer boys/men even though they have previously had relationships with girls/women. Being attracted to someone of the same sex is completely normal. It is not at all unusual to feel attracted to someone of the same sex and many people experience crushes or very close friendships with someone of the same sex as they are growing up. For lots of people this does mean that they are gay.

Further Information

Sexual Health Advice for Gays
http://www.nhs.uk/Livewell/LGBhealth/Pages/Gayandlesbianhealth.aspx
Information for Young People LGB
https://www.lgbtyouth.org.uk/yp-gay
Information for LGBT people in later in life
http://www.ageuk.org.uk/health-wellbeing/relationships-and-family/lgbt-information-and-advice/lesbian-gay-bisexual-or-transgender-in-later-life/

Bisexual

Is the word used to describe a person who is romantically and sexually attracted to both people, of the opposite sex and of the same sex. It does not mean that you equally have to like girls/women or boys/men or become romantically or sexually involved with both. You may feel attracted to girls or boys at different times in your life. Some people know from a young age that they are gay, but some people are not sure until they get older and start thinking about relationships.

Further Information

https://www.lgbtyouth.org.uk/yp-bisexual

Transgender

Is a term used to describe someone who does not conform to society’s view of being a male or female, the sex which they were assigned at birth.

See our understanding Transgender page for fuller explanation.