18 September 2002

I've found myself attracted to guys, does that mean that I'm gay?

Dear AlterHeros staff,
First I want to thank you for establishing such website for youth who are or may be wondering about themselves.
Incidentally, I am one of those people. I am turning 19 soon, and I think it’s time for me to realize what my sexual orientation really is. I have noticed for a long time that I am attracted to both male and female (more like 75% for male and 25% for female), and I actually have had couple of crushes on some male friends of mine. It that normal? I’ve heard before that even straight people have crushes on the same-sex friends sometimes. Does the fact that I am attracted to males and have had crushes on same-sex conclude that I am gay? Is there any possibility that I just want to be like them (eg. good-looking, smart, athletic, etc), or is it that I actually like them, instead of being like them.
I realize that my question may not be so significant, but I would really appreciate if you could reply with an answer.
Thank you 🙂

Équipe -Pose ta question!-

Hello Kevin,

First of all, bravo to have written an email. To put your thoughts on paper with regard to your attractions is not easy and you’ve made a positive step in the right direction, the self-discovery of who you are. The question you’ve asked can only be answered by you and it is up to you to discover your feelings and attractions. Of course, we can give you some insight to help you understand yourself better!

You mentioned that you are attracted to men 75% of the time and to women 25% of the time. Well, during the 1950’s, Kinsey proposed a scale with regard to attractions and sexual behaviours. This scale is still used today and helps us understand that sexuality is located on a continuum: all is not white or black (or gay or straight!). I present the scale below for your reflection.




Heterosexual predominance, occasionally homosexuel


Heterosexual predominance, with one very distinct homosexual past



Equally heterosexuel and homosexuel


Homosexual predominance, with one very distinct heterosexual past


Homosexual predominance, occasionally heterosexuel



Thus, with the aid of this table, you can attempt begin to figure out where you would situate yourself on the continuum, so much so as to the level of your behaviors, attractions in love, and your sexual fantasies, for example, at the time of masturbation. Homosexuality is not just a question about sexual attraction, it also applies to love, or emotional attractions.

We know that it can be difficult for someone to continue struggling with his/her attractions, but one has to try to address his/her feelings without censoring him/herself, without judging him/herself and without being ashamed. It is the only way that you will be able to learn about yourself and from that manage to arrive at an answer to your question. As you mentioned in your email, it is possible that you want to be like the boys you find appealing, and it is also possible that you want to be with them. Only you can determine the answer.

You are making a beautiful discovery, discovering who you are. Maybe you only have some fantasies. It is necessary for you to explore what you feel inside, and from that to see what you arrive at. You don’t need to decide tomorrow if you are gay, straight or bi. Kevin, you alone are the one who has the right to ask the questions and the one that explores his feelings. When you will know yourself better, you will accept your attractions, whatever they are, and you will surely come closer to your personal answer.

It is certain that in our society many consider that the attraction to someone of the same sex is not a normality and it is sometimes frowned upon with shame. You may be experiencing what one calls “internalized homophobia” that prevents you from letting go and excepting who you are. But to help yourself through these difficult times you can consult some informative internet sites, such as ours, where you will find a wealth of material that may provide material to better understand the feelings, emotions, and questions you may be going through.

If you feel the need to speak to someone, you can contact the help-line Gai-écoute (514) 866-0103 or at 1-888-505-1010 – their services are free, anonymous, and confidential. You can also consult some internet ‘’chat” sites where you can talk in confidentiality with other young people that may be experiencing the same attractions, emotions, and feelings and asking themselves the same questions as you do. It may also be good to talk to one or two people that you know who experienced the same feelings and questions as you have. In addition, in some regions of Québec, there are support groups for young people that are questioning their sexuality that could help you to meet new people as well as help you arrive at solutions to your questions. If you don’t live in Quebec, try to find out if any such groups exist in your area.

Good luck in your personal discovery!

Team AlterHéros