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Thursday 09 April 2009

"I think I'm gay… How do I know for sure?"

Posted in: Family Matters
By - 15th December 2007

Jacquie Grant affectionately known as the "tranny granny", Jacquie's had a colourful life which has seen her go from being harassed by police and arrested on the streets of King's Cross in Sydney in the late 1950s, to a happier life in New Zealand, where she has fostered more than 60 children, and now has numerous grandchildren. Jacquie lives in Hokitika.

Bill Logan is a counsellor, celebrant, gay activist and revolutionist in his fifties, Bill's been on the Gay Helpline in Wellington since 1982, was a co-founder of the NZ AIDS Foundation, and played a significant role in the struggle for homosexual law reform.

Tom Hamilton is Rainbow Youth's Executive Director, and also has several years experience working within LGBT communities in Australia and the USA. Tom also has extensive knowledge about community law, support work and counselling.

Previous advisors include secondary school teacher Carol Bartlett, gay activist Jim Peron,"Out & Proud" ambassador AJ Marsh, ex Youth Coordinator for Rainbow Youth Rob Marshall and editor Jay Bennie.

If you have a question you'd like to put to our panel, please complete our

Sam writes: "Dear GayNZ, my girlfriend's been coming on strong, but I'm not sure about her and I think I'm gay. How do I know for sure?"

Jacquie Grant responds:

Sam, it is good that you are questioning your feelings now rather than leading the young lady up the proverbial and all the distress that can result.

I guess given the fact that you have written this letter to a Gay site means you have more than a casual inkling that you may be Gay or Bi Sexual, nothing wrong with either but for your sake and for your Girlfriends be honest with yourself and her.

I hope you can find someone to confide in and discuss how you are feeling, I don't know where you live however in most cities there are organisations run by Gay folk who would be only to happy to listen and help you along your journey of discovery.

OUTline is a good place to start - 09 303 3584, or

Good Luck.

A J Marsh responds:

Dear Sam. Do you have sexual feelings for guys? Do you have them more than sexual feelings for girls? Do you hold any particular feelings for any particular lads that you know? If you think that your girlfriend is coming on too strongly, it could be that you're uncomfortable around her because she's a girl, not because of her intentions. I think that you should speak to a counsellor. If you're still at school, it may be best for you to use the facilities available in the community section of to contact an LGBT counsellor rather than approach your school.

Bill Logan responds:

If I understand you correctly, you have a girlfriend who is interested in beginning a sexual dimension to your relationship, and you feel in yourself some resistance to this. You do not report any strong religious views, which might be a basis for this resistance, so it is fairly clear that the part of you that thinks you might be gay is fairly strong. I wonder how many heterosexual guys in your situation would be hesitating?

Is it possible to discuss this with your girlfriend, telling her frankly of your unsureness and feelings and doubts. What might come out of that conversation? It would certainly be honest and fair to her, and help her understand your response to her—or your lack of response.

Sometimes a girlfriend in this situation will believe that having a heterosexual relationship will "cure" you of your homosexual "tendencies", but while many guys try that, it doesn't seem to work. If people have homosexual feelings, then those feelings seem to be even more persistent than heterosexual feelings.

Many guys find that the best indication of their sexual orientation lies in their sexual fantasy life. You have to allow yourself the freedom to explore various possible fantasies while you are masturbating, both gay and straight, and get a sense of what is most satisfying. - 15th December 2007