These are the core obsessions that drive our newsroom—defining topics of seismic importance to the global economy. Our emails are made to shine in your inbox, with something fresh every morning, afternoon, and weekend. But this time, there were two new questions. One asked students about their sexual orientation; the second asked the gender of their partners. States could choose which CDC questions to ask their teens; 27 states agreed, enough, researchers believe, to offer data that can be extrapolated to the rest of the country.
DEVELOPMENT OF SEXUAL ORIENTATION AND GENDER IDENTITY
Inside:Is my teen daughter a lesbian? Where once it was awkward, if not dangerous, to be anything other than straight, we now talk openly about a spectrum of orientations and genders. Or maybe not. Some girls who experiment with same-sex partners end up happily straight.
What is sexual orientation?
Some people may not identify with any of these labels, and that is OK too. It also is possible to not feel any sexual attraction. This sometimes is described as being asexual.
If you've ever wondered if you're gay, lesbian, or bisexual, you're not alone. Many teens ask themselves this question. It is a normal part of life. Maybe you've been attracted to someone of the same gender or you may have even kissed or had other sexual contact with someone of the same sex. But sexual behavior is not always the same as sexual orientation. Sexual orientation develops as you grow and experience new things. It may take time to figure it all out. So don't worry if you're not sure.