Can I be attracted to certain genders sexually and some just romanticly? How would I date in this way?
Last Updated: 08/18/2020 at 6:34am
Hope Hadding, MSW, LCSW
Clinical Social Work/Therapist
I am a professional therapist with extensive experience working with various mental health disorders as well as sexual issues. I am supportive and non-judgmental.
Top Rated Answers
Yes, you can: sexual and romantic orientations do not always coincid, so and may be hetero/homo/bi...sexual and hetero/homo/bi...romantic, any combination of the two is possible. And you can still have a happy and fulfilling life! You may decide to pursue purely sexual or purely romantic relationship as it pleases you, or to choose relationship dorms that allow you to look for different things with different people - like open relationships, polyamorous ones... Everyone can find their own balance, as long as you follow your desires and you make sure to be clear and honest with all the people involved about what you need.
Yes, you can. Personally, I have experienced this before. Although I am attracted to men sexually, I still have romantic feelings for some women. When this happens, I just go with whatever my gut tells me. In some cases, I have fallen for a woman and feel like I’m ready to be in a relationship with them even though I had no sexual feelings for them. It just depends on what you feel in the moment and what your gut tells you. Having strictly romantic feelings for someone does not in any way mean you are not allowed to be in a relationship with them, you just need to talk with them about it before getting into anything serious.
Short answer? Yes, you absolutely can be attracted to different genders in different ways. Dating can be tricky, but it's doable. As for the long answer, sexuality and romantic attraction differ vastly from individual to individual. Both are a spectrum and your thoughts and feelings can tug you in different directions on them. The terminology for it isn't too different from monosexual/monoromantic attraction either. For example, some might be biromantic and heterosexual depending on their preferences. Labels, of course, aren't a requirement and some people forego them entirely - but others find them very useful! Dating wise, it's not a bad idea to simply be upfront with whoever you're interested in whenever it feels natural. If you're not comfortable launching into the topic at full-speed, there are lots of ways to tiptoe around it to help you gauge how they feel about it before revealing that aspect of yourself. Casually mentioning that you know or have heard about someone who experiences what you are might be a good plan of action, for instance. It'll let you know their stance on the issue and, if they react poorly, you'll be able to decide for yourself whether or not you feel comfortable trusting that person with that part of yourself. Another thing to keep in mind is that, if they DO act poorly, it says a lot more about them than it ever could about you or your preferences. If you discover that what you're questioning is legitimately how you feel and identify, someone who is unaccepting of it is not worth your time. Finding the right person might take a good deal of trial and error, but that's almost always the case anyway, so don't lose hope! Someone will love you wholly and completely just as you are and they're worth the wait. In the meantime, good luck with figuring out your truth! No matter what conclusion you come to, you're completely valid and deserve to feel that way. I'm rooting for you.
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