Sexual orientation is about the gender to which a person is attracted romantically and sexually. You may be attracted to a person of another gender (heterosexuality), to a person of the same gender (homosexuality) or to men and women (bisexuality).
No one can choose his/her sexual orientation. Different people have different sexual orientations. Parents cannot influence through upbringing whether their children become homosexual, heterosexual or bisexual.
The situation in Germany
In Germany, you are entitled to love whomever you choose, regardless of your sexual orientation: men can love and be in a relationship with women or men; women can love and be in a relationship with men or women. Of course, transsexual and intersexual people can also freely choose whether they want to be with a man, a woman or an intersexual person.
In Germany, no one should be persecuted or punished based on his/her sexual orientation. It is forbidden by law to treat other people unequally or discriminate against them based on their sexual orientation. This means that people should not be disadvantaged because they are homosexual, heterosexual, bisexual, intersexual or transsexual.
If you need help or have any questions
If you are being or have been unequally treated or discriminated against based on your sexual orientation, contact a counselling centre. There, counsellors will offer you ongoing help if you have any questions or fears in relation to your sexual orientation.