What is sexual orientation? What is romantic orientation?

Sexual orientation is defined as a physical, sexual, emotional or romantic attraction to people of one or more sexes or genders. Examples of sexual orientation include homosexuality, bisexuality, pansexuality, heterosexuality and asexuality. Sexual orientation “also refers to the sense of personal and social identity based on these attractions, the behaviours to express them, and possibly belonging to a community of people who shares them.” ( unofficial translation)

Romantic orientation is defined as a romantic and emotional attraction toward another person. It is a feeling that states a desire to form a romantic relation, to be in a relationship with a person of one or more sex or gender. Homoromanticism, biromanticism, panromanticism, heteroromanticism, and aromanticism are examples of romantic orientations.

A lot of people have a sexual orientation that corresponds to their romantic orientation. “This means that the gender or genders of the people with whom they fall in love are the same gender or genders of the people for whom they feel sexual attraction ” (unofficial translation). For these people, sexual and romantic orientation is the same thing and they use only their sexual orientation to define themselves. “but this isn’t the case for everyone because, for some people, sexual attraction and romantic attraction don’t correspond. These people are varioriented and use a romantic orientation.” (unofficial translation)



Asexualité-s (s.d.). FAQ orientations romantiques, https://asexualite.wordpress.com/orientations-aromantiques/

LVEQ (2019). Orientation sexuelle et orientation romantique, https://lavieenqueer.wordpress.com/2019/02/13/orientation-sexuelle-et-orientation-romantique/

Définitions sur la diversité sexuelle et de genre. (2016) [Online] https://interligne.co/wp-content/uploads/2014/04/

Definitions-diversite-sexuelle-et-de-genre.pdf Groupe de travail mixte contre l’homophobie, De l’égalité juridique à l’égalité sociale – Vers une stratégie nationale de lutte contre l’homophobie (PDF), rapport de consultation, mars 2007

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