Does That Mean I'm Gay?
If I’ve experimented/fooled around with a member of the same sex (or thought about it), does that mean I’m gay?
Being curious, longing for closeness, or even experimenting does not necessarily mean you’re gay! Some girls and young women are primarily attracted to guys. Some may be more attracted to girls — yet still end up dating or later marrying a guy. It’s absolutely okay to be unsure, and it’s wonderful that you asked your question rather than hide it. By asking, you will help other girls who may be wondering the same thing.
For some girls, being curious or experimenting is about desiring attention or affection from a friend they admire. This closeness may be a search for value, identity, or a sense of belonging. Such a girl may be seeking assurance to questions like “Am I accepted?” or “Am I beautiful?”
For other girls, they may experience same-gender attractions during sexual development. These desires could be temporary, or they could indicate that a girl is sexually oriented toward the same gender. Time will tell.
If you have experimented, you might be asking, “What kind of person am I?” “If I am gay, will my friends and family reject me?” Or, “What does God think about me?” It is important that you not carry anxiety or urgency to figure it all out. It may take months or years to better understand your desires. Be patient and trust in God.
For your journey ahead, here are three things we want to bring you assurance about:
1. You are accepted by God. While we do not endorse any sexual intimacy outside of marriage, some girls — especially when they’re young — end up doing something with a friend or relative that they only later realize was a sexual act. They can feel very guilty about this. They don’t know who to tell, and so they keep it hidden. But you are not alone! And you don’t have to keep it a secret. Start by telling God about it. He already knows, yet He still loves, accepts, and forgives you no matter what. You can come to Him with anything.
2. Your identity is in Christ. Teen girls are discovering a lot about who they are. Due to rapidly changing hormones, many girls can’t understand their sexual orientation with confidence until their 20s! In the meantime, no one should pressure you to decide. You don’t need a label. Just know that God will love, accept, and care for you no matter what your friends say or do. If your friends keep asking about your sexual identity, you can say, “I just need space. I am not in a rush.” Every day, declare that your identity is who you are as a child of God.
3. You deserve safe support. Sex is a gift — and a responsibility — that God has made. You will enjoy it best when you trust and obey what He says about it. Remember: if you’ve been sexually involved with someone, God forgives you. The guilt is washed away! You are free to get back up and keep pursuing sexual holiness. To accomplish this, you will need support! Teens tend to talk with friends, but sometimes peers can gossip, tease, or even demand that you compromise on your morals to “prove” your sexuality. Think instead about sharing with a parent, pastor, or other trusted adult who can assure you of God’s love and help you further process your questions.
Sexual experimentation won’t ever answer the question, “Am I gay?” Rest instead in Jesus, for His amazing love offers you all the assurance you need about who you are as a young woman.
In Christ, we have certainty, assurance, belonging, AND confidence in our identity — not because of anything we do or don’t do, but because of His love for us.
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