Sexuality and gender identity

Peer support and conversations about anxiety, depression and other issues in the mental health space affecting LGBTQI+ people.

FAQ

Find answers to some of the more frequently asked questions on the Forums.

Forums guidelines

Our guidelines keep the Forums a safe place for people to share and learn information.

Pinned discussions

MsPurple LGBT+ members - got a question - need somewhere to start - here is the place
  • replies: 216

Welcome LGBT+ members and ally to the community. A few LGBT+ forum users have questions and concerns they can't a find a place to ask it here on the beyond blue forums so I thought starting a place for questions and more serious/heavy conversations H... View more

Welcome LGBT+ members and ally to the community. A few LGBT+ forum users have questions and concerns they can't a find a place to ask it here on the beyond blue forums so I thought starting a place for questions and more serious/heavy conversations Here you can ask questions about anything from questioning your sexuality/gender identity, coming out concerns, dating, mental health etc. If you are an ally (an Ally is a person who considers themselves a friend to the LGBTQ+ community) you are also welcome to come here to be a support to our community and ask questions as well. This is a supportive place for people to discuss their questions and concerns, we are not a place of judgement. As Thumper from the movie Bambi said "If you can't say somethin' nice, don't say nothin' at all." If you are looking for a more social and light hearted conversation might I suggest joining us on the thread under BB social/rainbow cafe. Copy and paste the link: https://www.beyondblue.org.au/get-support/online-forums/bb-social-zone/let's-chat-about-anything Feel free to introduce yourself below and ask any question/s I thought I'd answer one common question in the intro post and this is one I have heard a lot. What do the letters mean? When referring to the community it is shortened to LGBT+ as there are more letters than just the 4. I have put some of the common ones here: Lesbian Gay Bisexual Transgender Transsexual Two-spirited Queer Questioning Intersex Asexual Ally Pansexual Agender Gender Queer Welcome everyone and hope to see you around on this thread and around the BB forums MP

Chris_B IMPORTANT: Information and guidelines for posting in this section
  • replies: 0

The Sexuality & Gender Identity space is a sub-forum within the wider beyondblue forum community. 1. Its purpose is to provide people who identify as lesbian, gay, bisexual, transsexual, transgender, intersex, queer or questioning (LGBTIQ) a safe spa... View more

The Sexuality & Gender Identity space is a sub-forum within the wider beyondblue forum community. 1. Its purpose is to provide people who identify as lesbian, gay, bisexual, transsexual, transgender, intersex, queer or questioning (LGBTIQ) a safe space to talk about how issues relating to gender identity and sexual orientation impact on mental health and wellbeing. 2. This includes discussion of and support around chronic illnesses such as HIV which disproportionately affect gay, bisexual and other men who have sex with men. 3. As this is a safe and affirming space for LGBTIQ individuals, please note this is not an appropriate space for debating the "rights and wrongs" of homosexuality, bisexuality, or gender fluidity itself. This includes use of terms such as "lifestyle" and "choice". 4. This sub-forum is and always will be a safe and supportive place for LGBTIQ people concerned with what we all need to do to stay well. That said, others are welcome provided they respect that this is primarily a LGBTIQ space. 5. If you do not identify as LGBTIQ, or are not currently supporting someone in your life who is LGBTIQ, and are curious about aspects of sexuality or gender identity, please read through beyondblue’s resources for and about LGBTIQ people here to educate yourself rather than posting in this section.

All discussions

Lgos Parent of gay child feeling sad
  • replies: 6

Hi there, I'm new to BB. I've read a few posts and it seems we have a wonderful world of beautiful help out there... so I'm hoping someone can give me some advice. My story goes like this..in December I stumbled across some communications between my ... View more

Hi there, I'm new to BB. I've read a few posts and it seems we have a wonderful world of beautiful help out there... so I'm hoping someone can give me some advice. My story goes like this..in December I stumbled across some communications between my 21 year old daughter and one of her best friends, of a sexual nature. Whoa, first shock. she has had a couple of boyfriends and for the last 3 yrs was pretty much in love with another guy. I know she longed for something to happen with him. She always shared her thoughts with me. So, come January, I confronted her about the relationship with the girl friend. She told me it just happened and I think it was a shock for her too. She told me that she pictures herself having a husband and children and she is definitely not gay. So let's skip to now, April. She is still with her friend. How am I coping.. Not well. I don't want sympathy, I'm just finding this really hard. I have a good husband, supportive wise and I know my daughter is really happy so I'm glad for her. There are four of us living here, my daughter has explicitly asked me not to tell her sister, she's 18. My husband has never once had a conversation about anything, he just hugs and loves her. The secrecy, I feel like our relationship is just sooo bad now. She is a big softy like me and can't handle seeing me struggling with this so she is just living her life. She hangs out at her friends house, I guess she feels safe there. We have had 3 conversations only since December and the last one she just got so angry with me and told me to get over it! I've read 3 books, I'm re-reading them now, I go to a counsellor every few weeks and at the moment I am pretty much making my families life miserable. The silence of this subject in my house is killing me and the beautiful relationship we had. Due to my ever so slowwwww acceptance of her choice, I'm feeling like I am completely sabotaging our relationship singlehandedly. I don't know how to talk about it with her anymore.. can anyone give me some constructive advice? It's like I need someone holding my hand whilst I say to her "you know I love you so much and I need you to help me through this". It sounds so selfish of me, she too I believe must be having her own issues but she is also very happy. I just don't know how to take the simple step of trying to talk to her, the last time turned into a complete disaster. If you think you can help I'd appreciate your thoughts. L xx

solotraveller Bi???
  • replies: 7

I think I might be bi. I have only had very unsuccessful male partners but have always been attracted to women as well. I have had one sexual encounter with a woman, and recently have been doing some soul searching and think I might be bi, which leav... View more

I think I might be bi. I have only had very unsuccessful male partners but have always been attracted to women as well. I have had one sexual encounter with a woman, and recently have been doing some soul searching and think I might be bi, which leaves me with mixed emotions because, I dont know wheather I am definitely bi and I feel like a bit of a fraud to go and find support if I end up being straight. I dont even know wherr to get support it all seems to be gay, lesbian, trans not really bi specific. From what I have read on the internet (not always a great idea) that bi people get a hard time from both the heterosexual and lgbtqi community. I know noone can decide this for me but me im just really anxious about my realisation and I just would like to know that there are other people out there that are/have been through feelong like this. TIA

iwanttoconnect28 gender fluid person
  • replies: 6

hi everyone im a 28 yo male and i am desperately want to connect with others so i can explore my gender and sexuality with likeminded people, but more so i can dress and express myself in fem fashion, since ive come out as a bi trans fem person i fel... View more

hi everyone im a 28 yo male and i am desperately want to connect with others so i can explore my gender and sexuality with likeminded people, but more so i can dress and express myself in fem fashion, since ive come out as a bi trans fem person i felt like a weirdo and a second class person having lost a few friends and my job and being told by my mum that it takes away the rights of actual women, i have no intention of hurt actual women i just to want to be more my authentic self and drop my masculine act.

bluebottle321 GAY INTRUSIVE THOUGHTS
  • replies: 3

Hi all, It’s been a hard 2 months and I’m figuring out what’s the problem with me. I keep thinking to myself everyday which spirals and makes me anxious and feeling miserable. I’ve always liked girls and still do. When I was younger and going out par... View more

Hi all, It’s been a hard 2 months and I’m figuring out what’s the problem with me. I keep thinking to myself everyday which spirals and makes me anxious and feeling miserable. I’ve always liked girls and still do. When I was younger and going out partying I’d only be sexually attracted to girls not once would I think of a guy. I have a girlfriend of 2 years and it’s been the best 2 years of my life and we’ve talked about the future together and it’s something we both want. About 2 months ago I did drugs with friends and the after affect was severe anxiety and being anxious which is standard with doing drugs. 3 days later I was still having the same after affects so I went to my GP and had started antidepressants because I was severely depressed. 2 weeks went by and was still on the antidepressants, my girlfriend went away for a month. I had drunk a lot with the lads over footy and woke up that morning about a dream of being bi-sexual - A DREAM!! Since then, my mind is saying on repeat of every single day “Your gay, you’re gay”. I’m seeing a psychologist weekly at the moment and she’s labelling it as “OCD intrusive thoughts”. I’m also off the antidepressants as I feel like they were making me worse in terms of my anxiety - which has helped me a lot. The big thing I’m having a problem with is that I have this feeling in my groin area when I speak to a gay guy or sometimes speak to any guy or the feeling just happens out of nowhere even when no one is around. It’s not arousal at all it’s just an annoying feeling and sometimes it feels like I need a pee. But when I get the feeling my brain then spirals and thinks “what if I am gay”. I still love it when I kiss my girlfriend and I’m always aroused when we get sexually active. Can anyone please give me an insight of what is going on or someone is having the same issue?

...Gekota Gender Clinic appointment - Starting T?
  • replies: 3

Hey, before I get into it I just thought I’d give some context Im 15 (soon 16) and transmasc. Thankfully my parents are amazing and incredibly supportive (for most of it) I have recently found out i finally got an appointment at the gender clinic. I ... View more

Hey, before I get into it I just thought I’d give some context Im 15 (soon 16) and transmasc. Thankfully my parents are amazing and incredibly supportive (for most of it) I have recently found out i finally got an appointment at the gender clinic. I am very very happy about this as for so long when I was closeted it felt like a dream that was so far out of reach. Lately I’ve been thinking a LOT about transitioning and it’s really getting to me. I’ve told my parents I would wait until I’m 18 because that’s what they wanted but everyday I just feel more and more dysphoric and more like I want to start T sooner. I am a very indecisive person and I will never be sure of any decision I make no matter what but if I start on a low dose and it turns out it’s not right for me I know I can stop and I know I won’t regret any changes that it has made. I’ve spent so many years living as a girl and I know it kind of sounds selfish but I really want to live the few years of childhood I have left as a boy like properly you know? I hate myself. No matter how good my day has been I will always hate myself and I so badly want to finally be able to see myself and think “I’m okay” I don’t need to love myself that’s unrealistic for me I just want comfort in my human suit that I have to wear for the rest of my life. while saying that I am afraid going on T won’t make me feel any better about myself but if so I know I will stop and I know it won’t make me feel worse about myself. I want to feel like I can live and I know I could wait till 18 like safely but I don’t want to keep living like this. I am miserable every time I see myself it ruins everything it’s like “oh… a girl”. My parents have been very adamant that they don’t want me to transition till I’m 18 as they don’t want it to feel like they are responsible especially since coming out to them I know I can survive till 18. And I completely understand why they feel that way. I have heard that if you’re 16 you can take this test to see if you’re competent in order to choose for yourself about HRT. I don’t want to disappoint my parents anymore I love them so much. I just want to be free from all this pain that I cannot shake no matter what I do or how I feel. Most teenagers who start HRT it’s life or death. I know it won’t be literally that way for me but at the moment it fills like I’m not living life. I want to LIVE, as a boy.

Learningtofeel Am I broken, just wanting a friend
  • replies: 4

I am in my 40's, teenage son and married 20 years to the most amazing woman. Told my wife 6 months ago of my childhood sexual abuse from age 9-16, at the hands of my mum's friend, enduring horrific levels of sexual abuse hundreds and hundreds of time... View more

I am in my 40's, teenage son and married 20 years to the most amazing woman. Told my wife 6 months ago of my childhood sexual abuse from age 9-16, at the hands of my mum's friend, enduring horrific levels of sexual abuse hundreds and hundreds of times. My wife was the first person I ever told, she so was so amazing and never showed any signs of judgement. I shared with my wife about 3 weeks ago that I think I am bisexual. For me this is me being honest with myself for the first time that I could be attracted to another male, either physically, sexually or emotionally. My wife was very supportive and understanding (even offering me a hall pass to explore) however my commitment to her is 100% as solid as the day I made it. Even if I found myself attracted to another male or female, I would not act on this, as my commitment to her is paramount. What I am looking for is a friend, maybe someone who is also bi, to discuss this stuff with, someone to share with, seek validation and have honest conversations with, where I don't feel like I need to be cautious or fear of judgement.

Farmerboy59 Gay , married and scared
  • replies: 3

I have been marred for 40 year and love my wife dearly , we have a non sexual marriage now .I have know for the last 20years I am gay and can't think of any thing else but wanting to be with a guy. I feel so femine some days I am sure i am a woman in... View more

I have been marred for 40 year and love my wife dearly , we have a non sexual marriage now .I have know for the last 20years I am gay and can't think of any thing else but wanting to be with a guy. I feel so femine some days I am sure i am a woman in a mans body.Not sure what to do.

anon_1475 invalidity
  • replies: 2

i tried to talk to my bf a month ago about my gender identity issues and he made a joke out of it. i don’t think he views my gender issues or even sexuality as a serious matter. i‘ve just kind of pretended it didn’t hurt

i tried to talk to my bf a month ago about my gender identity issues and he made a joke out of it. i don’t think he views my gender issues or even sexuality as a serious matter. i‘ve just kind of pretended it didn’t hurt

Pixel8 Coming out support - Gay, Married w/ Kids
  • replies: 1

Hi there, Wanted to share my story in the hope it might help others and also looking for recommendations of finding like-minded guys who can relate. I am 35 and have been in a single relationship pretty much straight out of highschool. Married for ab... View more

Hi there, Wanted to share my story in the hope it might help others and also looking for recommendations of finding like-minded guys who can relate. I am 35 and have been in a single relationship pretty much straight out of highschool. Married for about 8 of those years with two incredible kids. Our relationship has always been strong on all fronts, including sex-life. Having said that though I have always been sexually attracted to guys only. A few weeks ago, I recently found the courage to share this with my wife. As I expected this caused a lot of hurt and pain for both of us and was very emotionally draining. What I wasn't quite expecting was the incredible support from my wife. Having said that we both acknowledge that our marriage cannot continue this way and for everyones (including the kids) best possible future we are making baby steps towards a goal of co-parenting. We are but at the beginning of what will be a long journey ahead. I believe our strong friendship bond will put us in good stead to make this happen, and continue to look out for each other. This means I have given her the space she needs as well as her leaning on the support of our friends (which after such a long time, have basically become intertwined). While a few have also offered words of support to me during this time I am torn at leaning on them too much right now (and worry how emotionally tolling that would be for them too). I also acknowledge that part of my journey will need to involve forging my own friendships that can better relate and help me discover more in this nextstage of life for me. My problem is I dont know where or when to begin. I dont want to jump too fast into anything but at the same time feel like now I have spoken my truth I should be living it. And not even sure where to begin; there seems to be a huge (at least comparitively) list of support groups for youth but nothing for someone my age. I just want to try and meet people and forge some new bonds without any expectations of sex or dating which seem to be the intent of most options I have found. Any words of advise or suggestions would be incredible; and love to hear any similar stories.

smartkitty1 I don't understand gender or pronouns. Help
  • replies: 8

All my life I was raised not knowing the difference in gender. I believed from the start that boys and girls were exactly the same. Mum tried to raise me feminine but I always just sticked to being myself, not seeing anything as feminine or masculine... View more

All my life I was raised not knowing the difference in gender. I believed from the start that boys and girls were exactly the same. Mum tried to raise me feminine but I always just sticked to being myself, not seeing anything as feminine or masculine. I knew what tomboys were and girly girls but I also thought that anyone could be girly or masculine without any issue. I was also a shy quiet person but also a huge trouble maker that climbed out of my kindergarten many times lol. Anyway I'm now 18yrs and I realize that gender has difference, however It feels like people decide what gender is based on stereotypes and gender roles, for instance my transmale friend said that if I hate makeup and dress like a guy then I can't be a girl.... and other people have said this to me so now I just wonder "what makes a girl a girl?" If wearing makeup is what makes a girl a girl and I don't wear makeup than who am I? If I don't do anything stereotypically girl like then am I a girl?. I know being a girl is to identify as a girl but what makes someone female? and what makes someone male? I can't help but feel like it is based on what people saw on the media. A girl cares about looks, seems neat and organized, quiet, soft, feminine. But why is it like that, I thought society wanted me to be myself why do I have to make myself like that just to be a girl? See before this I used to just see gender as labels, like a personality trait, it didn't affect much but suddenly its a huge deal. People say that what makes gender different is the clothes and personality, but I always believed that boys could wear dresses and skirts, I always believed that boys could be feminine same with girls for the opposite, so even with that, I saw no difference. And the same I feel with pronouns, I never saw gender in pronouns. My friend said to me "I feel like she/her pronouns makes me think of girly women and thats not me" and I just didn't understand what they were saying, society made you think thats what she/her pronouns means? but I thought she/her he/him they/them were just labels, and I always have thought that. I just don't get it. I see gender equality as I guess the literal meaning and I guess I'm wrong for it. I just don't understand why I can't be myself and still be a girl, why I can't prove that girls can be good at minecraft, hate hair, hate makeup ect... but still identify as one? If gender is based on society roles then why do we see it as such an importance? Sorry...