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Homosexuality & Bisexuality
Basic Information

What is the meaning of LGBT?

The terms lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender (LGBT) describe distinct groups within the gay culture. The early initiatives for people who were gay focused mostly on men. So, in an attempt to draw attention to issues specific to gay women, "lesbian" is often listed first.

People who are bisexual or transgender have been traditionally left out of, or underrepresented in, research studies and health initiatives. It is now considered standard to include these two groups along with gay men and lesbians.

What is sexual orientation?

According to researchers Susan Cochran and Vickie Mays, sexual orientation includes the following dimensions: sexual attraction; sexual behavior; sexual fantasies; emotional, social, and lifestyle preferences; and self-identification [1].

Definition of Terms

The term "gay" has traditionally been used to represent a diverse group or people who are attracted to people of the same gender or are in a relationship with someone of the same gender. It is important to recognize, however, that different groups within the gay community exist, and that the term "gay" is not all-inclusive. For example, transsexuals and some people who are bisexual do not consider themselves to be gay. Also, research has found that men who have had relationships with other men do not always identify themselves as gay. There is also a tremendous et...

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