Trans Terms

Trans Terms

As with most of the LGBT community, Transgender people have our own way of explaining who we are. That involves some terms that may be new, some that may be familiar, and some that need be refreshed. (If you come across a term that should be added or you don’t know what it means, send me a note):

  • Agender – a term used by individuals who do not identify with any specific gender role or expression
  • Cis-:latin for same, used to describe the majority of the population whose gender identity matches, or is the same as, their assigned sex (cis-woman, cis-man or cis-people).
  • Crossdresser – usually a person who identifies with their assigned gender, but manages levels of dysphoria by wearing clothing of the opposite gender
  • dqandkDrag Queen/Drag King – these are performers who’s persona is of a gender opposite their assigned gender. Sometimes this is a means of managing dysphoria, but can also be out of a love for the dramatic.
  • FTM – (female to male) describing the direction of transition for a Transman, from the assigned gender of female to the affirmed gender of male.
  • Gender binary: the concept that gender exists only in two forms, typically male and female, and that consequently gender expression exists only in two forms, masculine and feminine.
  • Gender identity: One’s own understanding of where they fit on the gender spectrum.
  • Gender queer – a person who doesn’t identify anywhere along the traditional binary or along the spectrum between the binary poles.
  • Gender spectrum: the idea that gender exists on a two dimensional grid with male and female as the biological poles and masculine and feminine as the expressive or cultural poles.
  • Gender: generally refers to one’s social identity in terms of a man, woman, or otherwise. This can be confusing as in medical communities the terms is often used interchangeably with “sex”
  • Intersex: the presence of inconsistencies between any of the biological components distinguishing male and female.
  • xyMale and Female: the biological description of gender, commonly referred to as “sex”. While usually associated with genitals, there are other biological components in the brain, endocrine system and genetic makeup that also function as either male or female.
  • Masculine and Feminine: descriptions of how one presents themselves in the context of a specific culture. Concepts of what is masculine and what is feminine vary across different cultures and in different time periods.
  • MTF – (male to female) describing the direction of transition for a Transwoman, from the assigned gender of male to the affirmed gender of female.
  • Sex: the “gender” assigned to an individual at birth, usually describing biological components such as their chromosomes, genitals, or other secondary sex characteristics (commonly referred to as “male” or “female.”)
  • Transgender: any form of identity that departs from the gender binary. Generally this describes an individual whose gender identity is different from the gender or sex assigned to them at birth.
  • Translesbian – a Transwoman who is sexually or romantically attracted to women
  • Transman – an individual who identifies as male but was assigned female at birth
  • Transsexual: an individual whose identity is directly opposite their assigned sex. Often, but not exclusively, used to refer to those who have undergone some form of surgery or medical intervention.
  • Transwoman – an individual who identifies as female but was assigned male at birth
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