How come I'm both “gay” and “pan”?

My bio says I’m “pan/gay”, which might seem pretty self-contradictory, right? It’s one or the other, right?

Well, here’s why:

First of all, sexual orientation is a spectrum. Second of all, it’s not set in stone. I don’t think anyone has to just pick one label and stick to it. Calling myself “pan/gay” is my way of saying that I’m attracted to people of all genders, but with a strong preference for guys. How strong? Am I a 4 or a 5 on the Kinsey scale? Dunno 🤷‍ There’s the word “homoflexible”... But am I homoflexible? And how many people know what it means without googling?

I don’t know, and I care less and less about putting a label or a number on it. One thing for sure: just “pan” or just “gay” doesn’t tell the whole story. But combined? They say enough and are easy to understand.

And then, there’s also this thing that I’m nonbinary. I might look like a man at the first glance, I might own a penis, but I’m not a man, I don’t subscribe to the binary. Is it gay to be into guys, if I’m not a guy? What do I call that? There’s this thing called diamoric orientations, but neither one from the list really fits me (and again, almost nobody knows them).

And finally, I’ve spent a huge chunk of my life identifying as gay ( Coming out as... not so gay 🤷🏼). I’ve become a part of the gay community, used gay apps, visited gay bars, and I still do. That identity doesn’t disappear overnight just because I finally decided to embrace other sides of my sexuality. It never will. My “gayness” is more than just attraction to guys.

So, summing up: it’s not self-contradictory, it’s just complicated. But “pan/gay” is the best approximation of the truth I can fit in 7 bytes, so I’ll go with that.