Definitions

  • Sex: ​Refers to the biological and physical characteristics that define men and women

  • Gender: Socially constructed roles

  • Gender Queer: For gender identities other man and woman

  • Gender Role: Behaviors, traits, thoughts, and dress expected by a culture of members of a particular sex

  • Gender Dysphoria: Discontent with the biological sex and/or gender assigned at birth

  • Gender Identity Disorder (GID): Formal diagnosis used by psychologists and physicians to describe individuals who experience significant gender dysphoria (see above)

  • Sexual Fluidity: The idea that there are more identities than just straight, lesbian, gay, and bisexual

  • Sexual Orientation: The physical, romantic, emotional, and/or spiritual attraction to another person

  • Gender Identity: A person's sense of being a man, woman, gender queer or gender nonconforming

  • Lesbian: the term used to describe a woman who is physically, romantically and/or emotionally attracted to other women

  • Gay: the term used to describe a man who is physically, romantically, and/or emotionally attracted to other men

  • Bisexual: the term used to describe a person who is physically, romantically, and/or emotionally attracted to men and women

  • Pansexual: a person who is physically, romantically, and/or emotionally attracted to members of all gender identities or expressions

  • Two-Spirit: a term for third gender people used in native American and Canadian First Nations Tribes. It usually implies a masculine spirit and a feminine spirit living in the same body

  • Transgender: a term used to describe people whose gender identity differs from their assigned sex at birth. This term encompasses people who are transsexual, gender queer, gender variant and gender nonconforming. Transgender individuals may or may not have medically changed their bodies through hormone therapy or surgery

  • Transsexual: a person born of one biological sex who seeks to become the other sex. This term refers to people who have undergone Sexual Reassignment Surgery

  • MTF: a person who has undergone surgery to change their biological sex from male to female

  • FTM: a person who has undergone surgery to change their biological sex from female to male

  • Queer: a term used to represent all individuals that fall outside of gender and sexuality 'norms'

  • Questioning: a term used to describe when an individual is exploring their own sexual orientation 

  • Intersex: a person who is born with reproductive or sexual anatomy that does not seem to fit the typical definitions of female or male. These individuals can have varied characteristics and the anatomy does not always show up at birth

  • Asexual: a lack of sexual attraction for other people and in some cases lack of interest in sex. This does not mean that all asexual individuals have no sex drive.

  • Ally: a heterosexual person who supports queer people

Resources -

LGBTQIA Glossary:

Intersex Issues Database

Guide to Asexuality

Transgender 101

Identities, Gender, and Sexuality

Recognizing that there are an infinite number of ways for one to identify and express their sexuality, sex or gender, this website attempts to be as inclusive of as many identities as possible. This information is not meant to  alienate any particular part of the community, but just gives a basic overview of the most common terms used to express sex, gender identity, and sexuality.

The Two-spirit Tradition

Identities

LGBPTTQQIAA+: A combination of letters meant to represent identities in the queer community. These letters represent Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Pansexual, Transgender, Transsexual, Queer, Questioning, Intersex, Asexual, and Ally. The plus sign is to indicate the infinite number of identities.

For more information about identities, sexual orientation, gender, and sex, please refer to the LGBTQIA Glossary provided. Just remember that these terms are always evolving and hold different meanings for different people. 

Bisexual, Pansexual & Fluid Community

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The Spectrum (Source)

This infograph is meant to showcase how identity, expression, presentation, orientation and sex can vary with every individual. The spectrum is broad and can include variances in any or all areas.