As part of our #BeyondTheRainbow campaign for Pride 2019, we're working hard to put meaning and education behind what we do, so that members of the LGBTQ+ community can walk without judgement or prejudice through lack of ignorance or understanding.
When chatting around the office it became clear that types of identity, different terminology and general LGBTQ+ lingo wasn't known by everyone, which is why we created this glossary. So if you read through this and learn one thing you didn't know before, we've done our job!
Also please let us know in the comments if you think any of the below should be amended or if we've missed anything. We're still learning ourselves and we've curated this list through lots of back and forth research to make sure we explain terms in the best possible way.
Agender: A person who feels they have no gender or a lack of gender. Often identifying as genderless or gender neutral.
Asexual: An adjective used to describe someone who does not feel or experience sexual attraction or desires.
Androgyne: A term used to describe a person who feels both masculine and feminine, like their gender is between both ‘male’ and ‘female’.
Ally: Someone who not only supports but also considers themselves a friend to the LGBTQ+ community.
Bisexual: A person who is both emotionally and physically attracted to more than one gender.
Bigender: Someone who feels that they have two genders, where they have both masculine and feminine qualities and may move between both female and male identities.
Bi-curious: To be bi-curious means that you are interested in having a same-sex relationship/experience, but you don’t necessarily refer to yourself as bisexual.
Cross dresser: Cross dressing is the act of someone dressing in clothes typically thought to be worn by the opposite sex.
Cisgender: Relates to someone who identifies as the sex they was assigned at birth. Someone who is cisgender can have any sort of sexual preference. For example, you can be a male identifying as a male (cisgender) but be straight, gay, queer bisexual etc.
Coming out: A term used to explain the lifelong process that LGBTQ+ people go through to share their sexual orientation or gender identity with either themselves or others.
Closeted: Someone who is not open about their own sexual orientation or gender identity.
Drag: An abbreviation for ‘Dressed Resembling A Girl’ Drag is an art form where a person will dress in clothing of the opposite sex and act with flamboyancy and exaggerated femininity often for entertainment purposes. We often call these types of performance artists Drag Queens/Kings.
Demisexual: A term that describes someone who needs to form a strong emotional bond or connection with someone before they will feel sexually attracted to them.
Deadnaming: When a trans person changes their name and people still call them by their former name.
Gay: The term used to describe a man who is sexually or romantically attracted to men. Gay can also be used to describe lesbian sexuality.
Homosexual: A term for someone who is attracted to someone who is of the same sex.
Heterosexual: A term for someone who is attracted to someone who is of the opposite sex.
Intersex: Someone who is born with a reproductive or sexual anatomy that doesn’t fit the typical definitions of a male or female.
Lesbian: Used to describe when a woman is exclusively attracted to women only.
LGBTQ+: This stands for lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender and queer (or questioning) and the + stands for any others within these communities.
Non-Binary: A term used to describe someone who doesn’t feel they fit into either category of ‘man’ or ‘woman’ so instead identifies as non-binary.
Out: Someone who is comfortable and open with their sexual orientation or gender identity can be referred to as ‘out’.
Outed: To publicly expose someone’s sexual orientation or gender identity, this is often referred to in a negative way in the sense that the person may not have been comfortable or happy with this happening.
Pansexual: Someone who is attracted to all genders. A pansexual person determines attraction by emotional and sexual connections and sees gender as irrelevant to who they fall for.
Pronoun: A word used to describe and refer to someone’s gender in conversation. As an example him, her, she, he.
Polyamorous: By definition to be polyamorous means loving more than one person. Being in a polyamorous relationship could mean having multiple sexual or romantic relationships at one time, where all partners involved have given consent.
Queer: A word that has since been reclaimed from its negative derogatory nature. Many people prefer to identify as queer as it’s a much wider and more fluid term. Queer is a term that refers to someone who is for sexual and gender minorities who are not heterosexual or cisgender.
Straight: A term to describe someone who is emotionally and physically attracted to people of their opposite gender.
Sexual Orientation: A way of referring to the gender to which someone is attracted to.
Transgender: Used to describe someone who’s gender identity is different from the sex they were assigned at birth. You may often hear this being abbreviated to trans.
Transitioning: The process in which a transgender person will start to live as the gender which they want to identify as. There are many different ways a transgender person can transition, from changing their name to taking hormones and undergoing surgery.