QUESTION: Is there something wrong with being LGBTQ?
No. There have been people in all cultures and times throughout human history who have identified themselves as lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender or queer (LGBTQ).
Homosexuality is not an illness or a disorder, a fact that is agreed upon by both the American Psychological Association and the American Psychiatric Association. Homosexuality was removed from the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual (DSM) of the American Psychiatric Association in 1974. Being transgender or gender variant is not a disorder either, although Gender Identity Dysphoria (GID) is still listed in the DSM of the American Psychiatric Association.
One’s sexual orientation and gender identity is another piece of who they are.
ANSWER Please see out list of terminology for further information on Sexual Orientation.
QUESTION: What is Sexual Orientation?
A person’s sexual orientation is defined by their enduring emotional, romantic, sexual or affectional attraction to other people. Heterosexual (or straight) refers to people whose sexual and romantic feelings are primarily for people of the opposite sex. Homosexual (or gay and lesbian) refers to people whose sexual and romantic feelings are primarily for those of the same sex. Bisexual (or bi) refers to people whose sexual and romantic feelings are for people of both sexes. Other terms that people use to describe their sexual orientation are “queer” and “questioning.”
QUESTION: What is Gender Identity?
Please see out list of terminology for further information on Sexual Orientation.
Gender is a social construct including psychological, social and cultural characteristics. Whereas sex refers to the actual biology of an individual, gender is constructed through culturally supported ideas of male/female and masculinity and feminity.
Gender identity is one’s internal self-awareness of being either male or female, masculine or feminine, or something in-between. Gender expression involves characteristics of appearance, speech, movement and other factors not solely limited to biological sex.
QUESTION: What if I’m not out yet, or unsure of my sexuality?
The WLU Rainbow Centre is an inclusive space open to individuals of all sexual orientations and gender identities. There are many possible reasons for accessing the Rainbow Centre, and our policy is not to make assumptions or generalizations about individuals who access our space and resources.