The Different Types of Sexuality
Hop on social media or Reddit and you will find a world of different types and labels around sexuality. It’s beautiful that language can evolve and help not only provide validation for how people experience their sexuality and romantic feelings but for them to shape communities and education around that.
That being said, if you’re questioning your sexuality or are trying to understand it as an ally and caring human, it can be difficult to decipher just what all these labels mean.
Before we dive in, it’s worth mentioning that while for the most part, these identities have agreed-upon definitions, they can change over time and even from person to person. So if you’re ever unsure in the context of a conversation, ask for clarification! People want to be seen, heard, and validated.
To understand a lot of these definitions, you do need to have a clear understanding of the nuances of gender. You can learn more about being non-binary, intersex, and reproductive healthcare outside of the gender binary.
Now let’s get down to it and learn all about the world of sexual orientation!
Allosexual is a term used to define people who DO experience sexual attraction and is used to differentiate from people who are a-sexual.
This doesn’t refer to what gender someone is attracted to, rather the fact that they experience sexual attraction in the first place. People who are allosexual can also be gay, bisexual, straight, lesbian, etc.
People who are androsexual, experience sexual feelings towards masculinity in general. Androsexual people may be attracted to cis men, as well as trans men, males, or masculinity as a whole.
People who are asexual experience little or no interest in sexual activity.
These people may still engage in sex because they may like it, want to appease a partner or have biological children. They also may still experience romantic attraction.
Bisexuality used to be considered people who are attracted to men and women, but it has expanded to include people who are romantically and/or sexually attracted to people of more than one gender.
This allows for more gender inclusivity.
Demisexuality is on the asexuality spectrum. People who are demisexual typically only experience sexual attraction after they’ve formed a strong emotional bond with someone.
Sexuality can change over time. The term fluid gives language to that experience and space for people to explore their changing sexuality.
People who are gay experience romantic and/or sexual attraction to people of the same gender.
Even if someone appears to be gay, they may choose to use a different term like lesbian for women, or queer.
People who are gynesexual, experience sexual feelings towards femininity in general. Gynesexual people may be attracted to cis women, as well as trans women, females, or feminity as a whole.
Also known as “straight”. People who are heterosexual are attracted to people of the “opposite” gender as them. Although typically thought of in the context of cis-gender, trans people may also identify as heterosexual.
This term typically means people who are attracted to the same gender as them, however, it is outdated, and often considered offensive.
Women or females, no matter if they’re cis-gendered or not, may use the term lesbian if they are attracted to people of the same or similar gender.
Pan means “all”, and people who are pansexual may be romantically or sexually attracted to people of any gender or sexuality.
Although formally considered a derogatory term, many people in the LGBTQIA+ community have reclaimed the word as a broad umbrella term for anyone who isn’t specifically cisgender or heterosexual.
Someone who is “questioning” is on a journey of exploring their sexuality and/or gender.
People who are sapiosexual generally experience attraction based on someone’s intelligence.
Humans Aren’t Cookie Cutters
This is not a definitive list of the many possibilities there are in the world of human sexuality. If you are curious to learn more, we invite you to do your own research.
If you don’t feel like you fit into one neat little box of sexual orientation – that’s great! Welcome to the club. Humans are dynamic creatures, and so are our sexual and romantic preferences. Your sexuality can constantly evolve and shift depending on your age, life circumstances, environment, and as you learn more about yourself and what you like.
Now more than ever, the need to define sexuality can be thrown out the window. Having said that, sexual orientations can help create communities and support systems where they can lean on each other and thrive.
No matter what your approach is to defining – or not defining – your sexuality, give yourself the grace to follow your heart and do what feels right for you.
Natasha (she/her) is a full-spectrum doula and health+wellness copywriter. Her work focuses on deconstructing the shame, stigma, and barriers people carry around birth, sex, health, and beyond, to help people navigate through their lives with more education and empowerment. You can connect with Natasha on IG @natasha.s.weiss.
30 thoughts on “The Different Types of Sexuality”
Hi, I’m bisexual (and quite new to the LGBTQIA community. Lately I’ve been finding that sometimes I will be sexually attracted to people (any and all genders) but then sometimes I won’t. I’ve been doing research but I’m a bit confused. The result I’ve been getting is Abrosexual, but I don’t know if that correct. Also I wanted to know (if this is the right term I’m looking for) can I still be abrosexual if I only experience these changes with one gender at a time?
I have known for a very long time that I am ONLY attracted to handsome men. However, if they’re not extremely bright & well educated AND have decent amount of money, I could careless. I guess I’m a heterosexual with sapiosexual overlay? If a man can’t hold my attention or teach me something, I get bored & blow him off.
How does the financial situation fit in? The men typically are right and left brained. Many have abilities to solve problems others can’t and have beautiful homes/cars etc. I’m very multi-sensory aware. Sight, sound of the voice, grooming and very meticulous in looks, house etc. I have had a difficult time finding those kind of men early on but it’s much easier now due to my self-awareness. I am very picky, right?
I think shallow is the term you’re looking for.
I always understood being lesbian, gay, straight or bi but all these new ones are weird bullshit.
No its not if your not lebtq+ you don’t need to be here and these sweet inasent people need some comfert and dont say mein things just because you think you wont get caught because you parrents arnt around and also stop being Homophobic i mein it is what it is 😡
I am so confused about my sexuality. I do like men and women and I like women with penises. What would that be “called”!????
I’m bisexual my friends are either bisexual,gay,pan or straight supporters and I’m proud for who I am.
that means you could be pansexual.
That confused pansextual
You’re probably 8 you can’t just call someone “Homophobic” just because he said an actually intelligent.
Is sexuality and gender based on tangible or the intangible?
For all my life, I’ve had romantic feelings for guys, but lately, I’ve kinda been finding women attractive. But the thing is, I can’t imagine myself in a relationship with one. I’ve always pictured myself with a guy, but when I see an attractive woman, I suddenly feel the same way I feel about guys. Does that mean I need to experiment with both genders to see if I’m actually bisexual???
You may have an attraction to women either sexual, romantical, or both. There’s such things as being bi, yet performing one gender over another. There’s another thing, I forgot the term I was actually searching for it in this blog, but it’s where a heterosexual or homosexual person indetifies most with that sexuality but every once in a while might do things outside of that sexuality. So for example someone who’s straight might have romantic or sexual feelings for someone of the same gender maybe once or twice. There’s also a chance you’re attracted to women only sexually but not romantically. I know this probably made you more confused about your sexuality, but the best thing you can do for yourself it to experiment.
Tldr; you should definitely experiment with different types of people. And multiple times! You might not like an experience but it could have more to do with rhe person then their gender. 🙂
Reply to The Questioning Bi
I know exactly how you feel I’ve had to do A LOT of researching, the closest I could find was Biromantic, I recommend doing a bit of research of this yourself because it can be hard.
I’m also extremely confused and have found my feelings for different genders change which I guess could be Abrosexual, but there’s so many more factors and so many more sexualities it’s been so hard on me, I know I should take my time but I want to figure it out .
This has really helped because I get to understand which part of the spectrum I am on and I get to feel more comfortable about who I am and although I don’t feel any romantic emotions for anyone, I still get to worry about myself and my emotions aswell as having to deal with people breaking up with me and stuff like that, so overall I like who I am and I don’t want to change that.
OMG THIS WAS SO HELPFUL!! I thought I was a lesbian, but I am gender fluid. So how can I be a lesbian if I’m not a girl, right? So then I found Gynesexual that just fits perfectly so I really like this thank you!!
I like girls but I am a trans girl what would that make me
My son watches gay porn but has no interest in relationships. The thought of holding hands or cuddling is too much intimacy. I’m worried that he will be lonely.
maybe this is his current attitude that will change over the years? Talk to him anyway, conversation always helps.
Have a nice day
No matter what you people think or say there will always be only 2 genders nobody cares what you believe you are in 100 years wedged your body gets dug up and they look at your bones or you DNA structure they will know from that if you were a man or woman so just stop with this bull crap
Hi, I honestly have no idea what I am! I feel emotionally attracted to both men and women, and i find some men very hot and same with women but I’m only sexually attracted to women and not men. what would this make me?
I’ve never liked anyone before, ever. I am a minor so I guess I still have a lot of time but I can’t help but wonder if I’ll ever get into a relationship, especially when all of my friends are dating. I guess you could say I’m questioning, but others say I might be asexual. I’ve never hated the thought of having sexual intercourse in the future and other things though. What are your thoughts?
If your so homophobic about it why were you on this website in the first place?
If your female (born or not) and like the same sex, you would be considered lesbian! Hope that helps! :]
I think you would be Bisexual. But if you ONLY like women with penises (besides men) then maybe you’re androsexual? Androsexual Is the attraction towards masculinity; but I am unsure if penises play a role in sexuality. On another note, you could be pansexual, the attraction to ALL kinds of people… hope that helps! :]
I have no idea what I am. All I know that I like all genders but I hardly feel attraction to anyone. And I don’t know what it’s called or that’s even a thing
How dare you! Gender and sexuallity are not bulls**t they are valid parts of each person’s identity. We are all human beings. It should not matter that people don’t all identify 100% as girls or boys or that anyone can be attracted to anyone, regardless of gender! If your best friend came out to you and told you that he/she/they /whatever pronouns the person prefers to use is pansexual and aromatic what would you do? Would you just never talk to him/her/them /whatever pronouns said person uses again??!
no, Danny, it’s not BS if there’s more development in the LGBTQ community. it’s just growth, and it’s not homophobic either if you don’t “understand” it. go research it. that’s literally the reason why this website exists. go find a brain before you leave a comment like that 🙂
you mean there are hundreds of genders, right? you’re thinking about sexes- and either way, there are three instead of two. intersex, male and female. get it right, dude
I question myself a lot due to the fact I might be asexual since the thought of wanting sex or doing it bores me and I happen to not find myself able to hold a relationship since the thought of it exhausts me.
Now the thing is I do like to read fanfiction on smut but when it comes to the thought of me doing sex I just Rather not do it….so what would this make me?
hi I am a lesbian mother my oldest daughter has been wondering if she is bi or pan but since I found this I can send this to her so she can figure it out so thank you for