It used to be called erotic plasticity. And it was defined back then just as it is today. People who know they are sexually fluid and practice that fluidity do not identify with a specific gender orientation, at least not permanently. Unfortunately, we humans tend to put ourselves in our own boxes and are often reluctant to climb out, even when we might want to. If you have identified as a specific gender and are wondering if there might be “more” out there for you, you may be sexually fluid. Here are three questions to ask yourself.
Suppose you have been a lesbian since your teen years. Now, all of a sudden, you are in a club and a male comes up to you and begins to flirt. You find yourself not just flattered but actually attracted to him. What’s going on? How can you be feeling sexual attraction to a man?
This is far more common an occurrence than you might think and is more common among younger people. And it crosses all gender identities – lesbian, gay, bi, trans persons, and even those who fall on the aromantic or asexual spectrum. Anyone may experience a change in sexual or romantic attractions at any time during their lives – and this may be temporary or permanent – or it may even change to a totally new preference.
This may happen throughout your life. You may move among a number of preferences at different times, and this, too, is more common than most think. There are lots of myths surrounding sexual fluidity, especially about those who change preferences multiple times. You are not just promiscuous; you are not just “confused;” you are not “over-sexed;” and you are not looking for the attention and adoration that are typical of a narcissist; you are not unstable. You are a person whose sexual preferences change over time, just as your preferences for foods, your political leanings, and your taste in movies, books, or clothing styles. It is just a part of being human.
Suppose you are a gay male. You have identified as this since your early teen years (or even before). You go off to college, have a sexual experience with a female, and decide that you are really “straight.” You continue this relationship and have a few side relationships with other females throughout your college years. You graduate and begin your career. On the job, you encounter a male who suddenly arouses that tool in your pants, and the two of you flirt, ultimately ending up in bed for amazing sex.
Or, you are a married man, with a wife and kids. In middle age, you begin to be turned on by gay sex. So, you try it and experience far more amazing sex than you have ever had with your wife. You now identify as gay and move forward with that identity.
You may be a bi young adult. As you reach your 30’s, you find yourself only being attracted to one gender and discovering a need to have a permanent, monogamous relationship with that gender. So, you no longer identify as bisexual, but as something else (gay, lesbian, hetero).
You must embrace the following:
Do not listen to anyone who tells you it’s just a phase and you will get over it
Don’t avoid dating someone, either in-person or online who is outside of your current gender identity
Take action by exploring dating those you are attracted to
Don’t overthink your fluidity – it may be situational, and it’s different for everyone. Go with your gut, not the experiences or advice of others
Don’t avoid exploring outside of your current gender identity because of a current relationship – just be honest about it. You should not deny or suppress your fluidity.
Sexual fluidity is more common than you might think. If you are experiencing fluidity and are confused or feeling some guilt, join some online chat groups with other sexually fluid persons. There are some online dating apps that have such discussion groups.
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