Sexuality and gender identity

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

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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

BeeHut How do you know?
  • replies: 11

I think I might be gay but I'm not sure. I'm scared to tell my family because it would tear them apart and I'm scared to tell my friends in case I'm wrong. I feel awful for not being honest but I feel like coming out would be selfish. I don't know wh... View more

I think I might be gay but I'm not sure. I'm scared to tell my family because it would tear them apart and I'm scared to tell my friends in case I'm wrong. I feel awful for not being honest but I feel like coming out would be selfish. I don't know what to do, I just wish I knew what I was for sure so I could make a decision without worrying about my feelings changing. I feel like there's no point talking to anyone about it as it is, but it's driving me crazy. I don't know what to do about it.

Creative_newbie How to support my partner with dealing with my anxiety
  • replies: 3

Hello,I'm in a new relationship for nearly 4 months now. I really love my partner so much. He's the most beautiful person in the world who I adore so much. We're so similar and we fit perfectly together. I've been developing a bit of anxiety in my li... View more

Hello,I'm in a new relationship for nearly 4 months now. I really love my partner so much. He's the most beautiful person in the world who I adore so much. We're so similar and we fit perfectly together. I've been developing a bit of anxiety in my life for some reason. I don't really understand what is happening to me at the moment. I'm anxious when he's not around me, but I'm also anxious at work too for some reason. I work in a bar in Melbourne and I love my job so much. Last night I experienced my first properanxiety attack where negative emotions like I wasn't good enough to be there come throwing through my brain and I broke out into tears. I really wanted to text him to let him know, but I was really scared to tell him. I don't understand what is going on with me so how am I meant to make my partner understand too when I don't know how to manage? I know I have to be open with communication with him, but how can I better help support him to better support me to deal with this beast of a thing which I don't want in my life? He's so special to me. I'm going to chill out for a bit on the couch, but I would really love some support with this.Cheers!Thomas

KireaB Narcissistic Girlfriend
  • replies: 5

Hello, I am new to this site, and I joined so that I could ask this question. I'll keep all of this as brief as possible. I just need some advice. My girlfriend and I (yes, I am a woman too) have been together for 2 years now. And we just started tal... View more

Hello, I am new to this site, and I joined so that I could ask this question. I'll keep all of this as brief as possible. I just need some advice. My girlfriend and I (yes, I am a woman too) have been together for 2 years now. And we just started talking about the possibility of children in our future. I really want them, and always have, while she hates children. She told me that I have to decide between her or 'the baby.' That pretty much means choosing her wants and needs or mine. She worried that I wouldn't be happy with her because of that issue, and we both had a day to think about it. The whole time, I talked to my best friend about it. I complained, but not once did I mention anything about children. I noticed that she treats me like garbage and I feel under appreciated. She has gotten better, yes, but it is not enough. She told me that she can't change anymore. Well... I'm sorry, I need to feel loved. I feel more like her slave than the person she loves. She doesn't want to have sex unless we role-play and pretend to be someone else. She says she can't get excited if it's just me. And yet, she says I'm beautiful and attractive. She says it's 'just the way she is' and that 'she can't help it.' I told her that I accepted it, and I did for a while for her. But I need that reassurance that she thinks I'm beautiful. Right now we have a long distance relationship, but she will be coming back in a few months. We talk online sometimes with a video chat, and she even tells me that she looks at herself in the video more than she looks at me. It makes me feel so... like I'm not even there. And very recently, she told me that she had to rethink our relationship just a few weeks ago because she was worried about why she was with me. She said she was worried that she was in our relationship because I loved her, and that was enough for her. Me loving her made her happy? What about loving me too? I honestly saw a future with her, but luckily I brought up the subject of children, otherwise I would have been in a bigger mess than I am now. Any comments would be great. I know that I should break up with her, I just... she says she never felt this way about anyone else. And that she loves me more than anyone. And if that's as much love as she can show, then... she's pitiful. I needed to get all of this put in the open, honestly. Thank you for listening.

Vera55 Days of vulnerability and fragility
  • replies: 13

I am having a very fragile and vulnerable day today. No idea why. Issues of abandonment are always close to the surface. Even when people around me go on holidays or my support person is away I crumble like a deflating doll. I don't seem to be able t... View more

I am having a very fragile and vulnerable day today. No idea why. Issues of abandonment are always close to the surface. Even when people around me go on holidays or my support person is away I crumble like a deflating doll. I don't seem to be able to feel grounded by myself. I tried but still can't find that inner anchor that would stop me bobbing up and down in that deep ocean. I didn't know what depression was until my late twenties, although I experienced it from my early twenties. I think I had very good survival instincts that kept me going till I was 24 when everything came crashing down. I think it was easier to hide my problems because firstly I wasn't aware of them and secondly I lived in an arty, eccentric circle where things appeared ok even when they weren't. How were we to know? How do you know you are weird when every one around you is too? We were the normal ones, everyone else was the problem. I think all this time I was acting out. I had no idea who I was. I went through life like a zombie. Everything from outside looked normal, study, travel, job. I had a totally different inner dialogue. I think that pressure of the two worlds becoming more polarized lead to my breakdown which happened in my late thirties. i remember waking up one morning and knowing that this is it. I was living on the South Pole but I really needed to be on the North Pole. It's like I had to turn everything inside out. I was living in a heterosexual relationship, thinking my partner was gay, a nice house, a responsible job, a young son and an important standing in our community. well, changing sexuality half way through your life is no picnic. I had no idea I was gay or bi or whatever. Very confusing time but I did have some wonderful relationships with women during the next 10 years or so. I hate this illness. I hate the way it robs me of my peace of mind, of my constant vigilance, of the energy it takes from just enjoying the little things, of having to doubt my every decision in case it's the depression talking and not me? what does that even mean? It's a horrible destructive disease. Some days I can and do accept that it's my reality and I do manage it the best I can but today is not one of those days. i know I am in good hands here on bb because we all stumble and fall at times, get up, brush our knees off and plod again. kind regards to all Vera

marley01 Stuck in a rut
  • replies: 1

Hi everyone, I am 25yrs old and I am a lesbian. I feel like I am going to combust of stress and anxiety if I do not talk to someone soon. TBH the reason why i have dragged this out so long is because I didn't want to believe that a past situation eff... View more

Hi everyone, I am 25yrs old and I am a lesbian. I feel like I am going to combust of stress and anxiety if I do not talk to someone soon. TBH the reason why i have dragged this out so long is because I didn't want to believe that a past situation effected me as much as it actually has. My very first partner of 3yrs cheated on me with a male. This has now caused alot of problems. I do not trust any males apart from my Father. I don't have many straight guy friends, I can count them on one hand. Due to this now my current partner of 2.5yrs is aware of my "issue" with straight males. I feel like any male from her work wants to be more than friends and doesn't respect our relationship at all. I can outright say, she does not agree with me and feels I do not trust her which is not the case. I do not trust the boy in the situation. I instantly feel sick in the stomach if a conversation is spoken about of her male co-workers like something funny or if something happen. Ontop of that, I am anxious all the time. I have tried breathing exercises etc but I think I need some more tips. If the traffic is bad, running late, messy house etc etc my chest tightens and I get annoyed to the point I cannot shake it off and it ruins my day. I was recently promoted at work which has caused alot of stress and not believing in myself. Waking up for work is the worst because I dread it, even though its the most amazing job in the world and I LOVE working their.. its just my current mood I can't shake. HELP!

kalredhead I don't know what to do.
  • replies: 6

Hello everyone. I've been going through a rough time lately and I really just need someone to listen. I'm a 22 year old man, I'm gay and I have depression and social anxiety disorder. At the moment it feels like I'm standing on the platform watching ... View more

Hello everyone. I've been going through a rough time lately and I really just need someone to listen. I'm a 22 year old man, I'm gay and I have depression and social anxiety disorder. At the moment it feels like I'm standing on the platform watching The train known as my life just roll by without stopping and I don't know what to do. I used to have a large circle of friends in high school who were great to me and this is horrible but I was under a lot of stress from coming to terms with my depression and sexuality and I just felt that I couldn’t trust them to still be friends if I told them any of this. I live in a country town and I heard about a lot of bullying and prejudice to people who were known to be gay in school, including a close friend of mine. By year 12, it had just become too much to cope with, so I left before the end of the year and just shut myself off from the rest of the world. It was some time but I finally mustered up the courage to come out to my family. Everyone was very supportive except for my Dad, who didn't believe me because I had never been with a guy before. I tried to tell him that I didn't have to be with a guy to be sure, I just knew, but he just brushed it off and said it was a phase. It really hurt me because I had nothing but respect for him. I never brought the subject up again. As for my mum, she also has depression and we've been trying to work through it together but my sickness causes me to sometimes be aggressive and paranoid, thinking that everything she says about me is some kind of attack on me and it's driving us further and further apart. My poor brother sometimes ends up stuck between us when my mum and I argue and frankly I think he just wants to get away from the both of us as soon as he can. I don't blame him. It's been like this for some time now and I have been having thoughts about self harming and even suicide and it scares the hell out of me. I'm really stressed out and just want to scream.I'm sorry about the long rant. This is something that I've been meaning to get off my chest for a while. I don't expect any advice, I just needed someone to listen. beyondblue’s clinically-trained moderators often work offline (invisible to you) on issues relating to suicide or self-harm. At the same time, general supportive comments from the community are encouraged. If you have concerns around suicide or self-harm, please phone our support service on 1300 22 4636.

Bridge A Complicated Suicide
  • replies: 13

My name is Bridge, I have suffered from depression and anxiety from about the age of 12, culminating in a big breakdown at 29.At 29, homeless, jobless and bedraggled, I finally got help, literally hours I thought about ending my life, which I aborted... View more

My name is Bridge, I have suffered from depression and anxiety from about the age of 12, culminating in a big breakdown at 29.At 29, homeless, jobless and bedraggled, I finally got help, literally hours I thought about ending my life, which I aborted at the last minute as I just wondered if (perhaps?!) I really was suffering from depression. I decided that I should go and ask, just in case, as if I wasn't the other option would always be available. Many thanks to the teachers who taught me logical thinking skills. And many thanks also to the enlightened GP who saw me, without an appointment, having never met me before, (and after I had spat on his waiting room carpet). They saved my life that day.and while I'm at it, thanks also to my dad, who took me in and let me sleep under the table in the living room for a while, where I felt safe. That day marked the start of the rest of my life. The great rebuild. It has taken years, and I am so proud of myself for what I have achieved. 15 years on, I have a full time job I love, a partner I (usually) adore, an investment house that provides some security, and my relationships are stronger and healther. I live up in the bush now, just outside Melbourne, and I am free here. I love it. I can help other people now. I can give back. Its fantastic. so, where ia the suicide and whats so complicated, I hear you wondering?I had a friend. I met her at school when I was 6. we were best friends. We ended up at different schools, but always kept in touch. spasmodically at times, through the years. Knowing her kept me going at school when I felt no affinity to anyone, when I was the only odd person and no one else made sense. That continued through my 20s as well. She continued to make more sense, even after a long absence, than pretty much anyone else.In my late twenties, my friend met her future wife, (who I will call X) and moved in with her (yeah, we're all lesbians here). I went overseas for a year, and came home a wreck. Backpacking was great: as no one knew me, it was easier to hide my ever deepening depression. It came to light shortly after my return (and almost suicide) that I was in trouble, and I told my friend about it. Over the next few months, I got very mixed messages from them both. I would be invited to visit, and then asked to leave. Her partner was really rude to me on more than one occasion. Eventually I stopped going around, and they never came to visit. I was angry, baffled and very very hurt. But I had enough to deal with, I was fighting something that was way bigger than them. So I put the hurt and confusion into a box in the back of my mind, taped down the lid, and walked away from it. There seemed nothing I could do, so I just got on with life. And I did.roll on 14 years, and I get an email, out of the blue, from my friend. She tells me that the reason that she removed me from their lives was at her partners request, as her partner was scared by my depression and felt sure that it would end in my death and she didn't want that for herself or my friend. She then went on to say that her partner had since taken her own life, leaving her with 2 primary aged children. Wham. Since then I have caught up with my friend twice. I haven't met her kids yet. It is good to see her, and weirdly, we kind of just pick up where we left off, as we always have. It is really great to have her around in the soup of life again. Its going to take a long time to catch up, and to readjust, and I'm angry sometimes that I need to at all. But then I remind myself to make the best of what you have. so im looking forwards to the future. But X. I haven't grieved like this, ever, I think. And its so confusing. Im crying as I type this. I cant seem to make headway. Im obsessively thinking about the whole situation , over and over. I daydream about what I could have done, that day she died, if id just run into her. (would I have recognised her anyway? its been 14 years and I didn't know her that well to start with. insane stuff). I get angry with her and find myself talking to her (and shouting at her) when theres no one to hear me. "You should have recognised this! You know this would have passed! You've done this before!!". I trawl the internet looking for pictures of her, write ups about her, obituaries. She didn't even like me! She was horrible to me! Why on EARTH am I so upset??? so that's my current struggle. and it will pass. eventually. I actually feel better having written it and read it back. Im going to post it on a forum, which is something I've never done before (I usually just save things onto the hard drive and avoid them in future).so well see how that goes.Thank you for reading this far. I feel better already. Bridge

chloe990 Out of the blue, my gf of 5 years broke up with me
  • replies: 2

Sorry for the length, but I really need some support. Please...My girlfriend of 5 years broke up with me a week ago, totally out of the blue. Everything was great between us, we were always happy to see each others and had a good time. We were talkin... View more

Sorry for the length, but I really need some support. Please...My girlfriend of 5 years broke up with me a week ago, totally out of the blue. Everything was great between us, we were always happy to see each others and had a good time. We were talking about our future pretty often too. We are both 23 and were not living together yet, but I was pretty much over at her place all the time. We were supposed to move out together in a year or two. I am still in university and she finished her degree 3 months ago, now working full time. We were planning a euro-trip for this summer and everything was good. I got home one night and she broke up with me, told me she was deeply unhappy, that she saw me as her best friend and family but that she wasn't able to have those romantic feelings anymore. All of that in 5 minutes, then she left and asked me not to contact her cause she didn't want to doubt her decision. She told me if we were meant to be we would end up together but for now she wants to be alone.I'm not 100% sure that she is manic-depressive, but after reading a lot of stuff, I think that's what it is. We've been together for a long time and it's not the first time something like this happens (even tho this is the worst time). And it's almost always at the same time of the year. The first time was 2 years ago, she tried to break up but changed her mind an hour later. Then last year (also in March), she was studying abroad for almost 6 months so we were doing long distance. I went to visit her for 2 weeks and while i was there, she broke up with me but we got back together the next day. She apologized a million times for that, felt super bad, cried and told me she was so happy that I waited for her. Then now. I don't know if it's possible, but I kinda see a pattern.Also, the same reasons always come up... ''I'm not happy with myself, I am lost, I need to figure out stuff on my own, it has nothing to do with you, but I don't think we are meant to be...''. It doesn't seem to make sense for me, cause she always told me she loved me, that she wanted to have a family with me and that I was the love of her life. Even a week before the break up, she told me before falling asleep that being in my arms at night was her favorite moment of the day.After reading on the subject, all of her reactions and mood swings make so much sense. She used to sometimes scream at me in a very irrational way, for insignificant stuff (for example not getting a plate to eat a cupcake, or not noticing a red spot on her lip...). Also, she rarely wanted to go out with other people and didn't really have friends. Sometimes we would get ready to go somewhere, she seemed excited to go, but then when it was time to leave, she used to tell me to go alone cause she wasn't in the mood anymore. Her self-esteem was very low too, she used to tell me stuff like ''I don't like meeting new people 'cause I never know what to say, and they would probably think I'm boring anyway''.She's a stressed person in general. In the last year, she also gained quite a lot of weight and had unexplained pains in her stomach (she saw more than one doctor and they were not able to detect what it was). She was always tired and didn't really have motivation. She didn't like her body and we didn't have that much sex.After the holidays, she told me she was unhappy and sometimes had suicidal thoughts. Stupid me, I only cuddled with her, telling her not to think about stuff like that, thinking that it was only a phase and that it would go away on its own. I didn't do anything about it.I don't know if the fact that she lost her mother at a young age (14) could have something to do with it. She died from cancer. She used to see a therapist 1-2 times a week for a couple of years. She stopped therapy a year after we started dating, saying she was now happy. Also, the fact that she is bisexual... when we started dating she told me she felt bad and that it wasn't fair to me that she was sometimes attracted to guys, that I should deserve someone who only wants me. But I told her it didn't matter 'cause I could be attracted to other girls, too. Anyway.So now, we've been broken up for a week. She asked me not to contact her so i did not. But she texted me and called me yesterday (so 5 days after no contact), telling me it was too hard not to talk and she wanted to know how i was doing. That she would understand if i didn't answer. I did not. But I sent her an email 4 hours later, saying i was doing ok and that i was ready to support her in any possible ways. Now she wants to meet next week to talk.I really want her back cause I love her with all my heart, and I know what a great couple we can be. I would marry this girl on the spot. I also want what is best for her and I want her to get better. What should I say to her next week? Should I focus on me being there for her and leave the relationship part aside?

Joshua Not sure where to go from here?
  • replies: 5

Hello, I don't really have a lot of people in my life right now that I can talk to about this stuff, and I keep a lot of this hidden - mostly I think out of shame and anxiety (I get really nervous talking to people about personal stuff, even doctors ... View more

Hello, I don't really have a lot of people in my life right now that I can talk to about this stuff, and I keep a lot of this hidden - mostly I think out of shame and anxiety (I get really nervous talking to people about personal stuff, even doctors and people I consider as very close friends). I also hate the disappointment that comes along with letting people down.- So coming on here is attractive as I can discuss some of my concerns whilst still protected by the anonymity of the internet.Last year I had a pretty serious drug addiction to narcotics with the help of my doctor and mother I managed to kick the habit and I'm now clean, and really have no desire what so ever to go back to addiction. There's a few reasons why I think I turned to drugs, but the underlaying theme was depression (I didn't know this at the time - but it's obvious now) I've been in emotional pain for a long time, I'm gay and was bullied a lot in high school, which really effected my confidence as an adult and taught me anxiety. I also was sexually assaulted when I was in my early 20's and always felt it was own fault for putting myself in a stupid situation. I've only just begun to accept that I wasn't responsible for what happened (at age 29). I've also had problems with my body image and have suffered with bulimia on and off since a teenager. But in the past few years especially it's been building up and I guess last year it got to the point were I couldn't cope day-to-day so I engaged in reckless behaviour. To feel something other than the numbness or as escapism. I was a functioning addict, and it was very well hidden. I managed to hold down part-time professional employment (HR role) and study full-time (3rd year Architecture student).When my mother discovered my addiction and confronted me - I became very emotionally unstable and couldn't stop crying - usually I don't wear my emotions on my sleeve - I cried for the better part of 4 days. With her support I managed to complete stop abusing drugs. During this time I was having a lot of suicidal thoughts, mostly just wishing I was dead and thinking about different ways it could happen. I ended up attempting suicide and I went to hospital. But I played it down as I realised I had acted on impulse and really didn't want to die. I spoke to the pysch people and then was allowed to leave the next day. My doctor recommend that I start taking an antidepressant which I've been on for the last three months. I've been doing quiet well over this period - I generally feel pretty even (emotionally stable) I don't really have highs or lows it's just constant and I feel I am able to see things with much more clarity, and the meds really helped with my anxiety. Unfortunately the last week I've started getting pretty sad again, crying lots, and thinking about suicide again. Focusing (or fantasising ? I'm not sure what's the correct word here?)So far only my mum, and doctor know what's going here. My other friends, family, peers and coworkers were just aware that I was unwell but it was never specified with what, and people generally weren't too nosey. I moved from to Perth at the beginning of last year from Sydney, part of the reason was study related and then also I was planning on trying to turn my life around a new start etc etc. So I don't have a lot of friends here - and I really don't feel too comfortable discuss all this in a lot of detail. I actually live with my mum at the moment, but she's gone on a 4 week cruise with my grandma and aunties (this was all booked and paid for prior to me getting unwell/her known what was going on). I'm not sure if it's because I'm here alone or whether this would have happened either way - but it sucks that she's gone, and it sucks that I'm having these dark thoughts. I don't really have many places I can turn to - I'm hoping somebody online can give me some advice on how to proceed from here. I'm scared I will hurt myself again, I don't know/can't remember at what point you go from have dark thoughts to actually acting those thoughts out. Mental health scares me - there's been a history of this behaviour in my family. My cousin took his life a few years ago and my father was an addict who died of an overdose. I'm just worried that I'll go the same way.beyondblue’s clinically-trained moderators often work offline (invisible to you) on issues relating to suicide or self-harm. At the same time, general supportive comments from the community are encouraged. If you have concerns around suicide or self-harm, please phone our support service on 1300 22 4636.

Chilli621 Gay Children
  • replies: 7

I was hoping someone else may have had a similar experience to me. My son told us he was gay when he turned 21. We had know idea he was. We love our son unconditionally, but are not thrilled about the fact that he is gay. I know this is not political... View more

I was hoping someone else may have had a similar experience to me. My son told us he was gay when he turned 21. We had know idea he was. We love our son unconditionally, but are not thrilled about the fact that he is gay. I know this is not politically correct these days. I don't know why, as his parents, we feel this way. As his mother, I know I love him, but ever since this revelation I have felt a like I have a black whole in my heart. I grieve for the life I thought my son would have, for the life I thought I would have with him as he grew older, got married and had children. But more so he himself does not appear to be very happy, so it complicates the matter. I feel perhaps if he where happier, maybe I would be, I don't know. All I know is I am so tired of this awful feeling of blackness.