What is Homosexuality?

This question does not have an answer that everyone accepts.

One reason is the many differences in the people to whom the description ‘homosexual’ is applied. Some people experience same-sex attractions and consider themselves to be homosexuals. Others experience same-sex attractions but consider themselves to be bi-sexual. Still others consider themselves to be heterosexuals who experience unwanted same-sex attractions. Some people who identify themselves as homosexuals claim they have "always been different” while others have lived a heterosexual life for many years, even marrying and having children, who then turn to homosexuality.

Usually, homosexuality is described as a persistent and predominant sexual attraction to persons of one’s own gender – men being sexually attracted to men and women being sexually attracted to women. Words sometimes used to describe those who experience same-sex attraction include homosexual people and gay men and lesbian women. However, not everyone who experiences same-sex attraction chooses to identify himself or herself as gay or lesbian.

What is Sexual Orientation?

Sexual orientation is a way of referring to the direction of a person's predominant sexual attractions over time. A person who experiences persistent sexual attraction to the same sex is sometimes said to have a homosexual orientation. A person who experiences persistent attraction to the opposite sex is sometimes said to have a heterosexual orientation. A person who experiences persistent attraction to both men and women is sometimes said to have a bisexual orientation.