Identity

Sexual orientation or sexuality is a type of identity that everyone experiences—that is not to say that everyone experiences the same sexual orientation. There are as many sexual orientations as there are people to experience them. While sexuality and gender are often confused as being the same, they are actually quite different. Sexual orientation/sexuality is a person’s identity in relation to the sexual attraction, or lack thereof, to a specific gender(s). Many people who identify as queer, often form their identities through a long process of self-identification rather than being or keeping an assigned identity or being born into an identity. When it comes to sexuality and sexual orientation, there are a plethora of identities a person can choose for themselves.

Some of the most common of sexual orientations are: Straight (or heterosexual), Homosexual (or Gay or Lesbian), Bisexual, Pansexual or Asexual. Not only are these identities some of the most common, but they can also be the umbrella terms for more specific sexual orientations. Additionally, all of these identities experience their own set of problems and difficulties despite all being under the Queer umbrella. Often these problems can even stem from within the Queer community and can revolve around the idea of who is “allowed” to identify as one thing or another or who is “allowed” to participate in Queer spaces.