A to Z of common LGBTQ terms and what they mean

A to Z of common LGBTQ terms and what they mean

Language is constantly evolving and developing as times, cultures and people shift and change. For better or worse, people have continued to find new terms and definitions for human gender and sexuality. Though many of these are far from perfect, it is important to understand and respect these terms and understand their implications and definitions for the LGBTQ community.
Please note: The following list is far from conclusive or inscrutable and it is very important to respect people's desired identifiers, if any, and respect their wishes in regards to definitions.

A

Ally

A term given to someone who gives support and respect to the LGBTQ community.

Androgyny

A person with physical elements of masculinity and femininity, it can also be used to describe someone with both male and female anatomy.

Asexual

A person who feels little to no sexual or physical attraction to any group of people. Asexuality is not the same as celibacy.

B

Bicurious

A person with curiosity about an attraction to members of the same sex/gender.

Bisexual

A person with physical, sexual or emotional attraction to members of another sex/ gender, as well their own.

C

Cisgender

A person whose gender identity matches the sex assigned at their birth.

Cross dresser

A person who wears the clothes of another gender/sex.

D

Drag king/queen

A person who dresses up or acts with exaggerated characteristics of masculinity or femininity.

Dyke

A term used to describe a lesbian. Can sometimes be used to describe lesbians with perceived masculine characteristics.

G

Gay

An individual who is primarily attracted to members of the same gender/sex. Though this is often used for men who are attracted to other men, it can be used for any sex.

Gender identity

The perception of one's gender. This can match physical anatomy assigned at birth, or in the case of transgender people, it can be different from sex assigned at birth.

Genderqueer

An individual who does not conform to binary of man and woman. These individuals may possess characteristics outside of sexual binary.

H

Hetrosexual

An individual who is primarily attracted to members of the opposite gender/ sex.

Homosexual

An individual who is primarily attracted to members of the same gender/ sex.

I

Intersex

An individual whose sexual anatomy does not fit with traditional patterns of male of female.

L

Lesbian

Women who are primarily attracted to other women.

LGBTQ

Abbreviation of lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender and queer.

M

Metrosexual

A male individual who shows interest in traditionally feminine interests such as personal grooming, fashion and shopping.

Q

Queer

A term used to describe any individual who does not conform to a non-normative gender/sexuality.

P

Pansexual

An individual who is sexually, romantically or physically attracted to members of all gender expressions/identities.

S

Sex assigned at birth

A phrase used to describe an individual's sex assigned at birth. This is different from gender identity.

Sexual orientation

The sexual, romantic or physical attractions that an individual feels for others. This is often based on the gender identity and expression of the person or people they are attracted to.

T

Transgender

An individual who lives as a gender different to their sex assigned at birth. This is irrespective of sexual orientation.

Transsexual

An individual whose gender identity is different to their sex assigned at birth. People who identify with this label may have undergone medical treatment to alter their biological sex, or be someone whose perception of gender is different to their sex assigned at birth.

Transvestite

An individual who dresses as a member of a different sex. This can be for many reasons, including enjoyment and freedom of expression and should not be confused with transsexuality.
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