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Understanding Sexuality on Your Terms

Updated on June 17, 2016
Christina St-Jean profile image

I am a mom of two awesome children who teach me more daily than I ever thought possible. I love writing, exercise, movies and LGBT advocacy.

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We are a nation obsessed with sexuality right now. The Orlando nightclub shooting brought that laser-sharp focus on the LGBT community, so now, there are so very many people concerned about notions of sexuality, what that means for them and how they are going to be perceived by the masses.

The problem is, we forget the simple fact that sexuality is a personal sense about ourselves that we ultimately know to be true - for the moment, at the very least. No one else can determine our sexuality, and that is something that has caused a great deal of debate.

There seems to be a perception that sexuality or sexual orientation is something that's a matter of choice. All that ultimately leads to is a road that is filled with misunderstanding, tension, and hatred that has no real foundation.

The issue of sexuality has been a hot button topic for ages. Why, though? Are we so deeply entrenched in notions that we must be a part of the binary that we cannot openly embrace anything else?

Let's keep in mind that in the early 1900s, it used to be pink for boys and blue for girls; it did not catch on, for whatever reason, so it was switched, and that seems to have been the beginning of a firm binary sexuality. If you somehow didn't fit into either area, whether by choice or by chance, you were deemed abnormal, and for many, those attitudes seem to have stuck.

Making fun of or ridiculing anything that does not fit into the binary notions of sexuality that we are used to is ludicrous, though. Evidence of LGBT thoughts or practices range as far back as the times of Alexander the Great and even prior to that. Why would we mock them now?

People need to be willing to embrace who they are, in addition to embracing who others are, and respecting the differences between us all. Older notions of sexuality - ones that encourage the binary and nothing beyond that or outside of that - are all right, but we still need to be accepting of those whose definitions of sexuality or sexual identity don't necessarily align with our own. Change is inevitable, so why cling to old notions like a worn out pair of shoes?

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