A Comprehensive List Of LGBT Terms Everyone Can Understand

illustration of people showing LGBT support in rainbow color bac

Okay, following some of the actions in the south that are undoubtedly anti-gay, anti-transgender, anti-people, I wanted to create a comprehensive list for everyone. These terms are just a simple base understanding, the most basic of understanding. Simply because people seem to confuse crossdressing and transgender, then refuse to hear those in the LGBT community when they do finally speak up to correct those in the wrong. I will never act as a member of that community because I simply cannot understand what it means to be persecuted for my gender identity or sexual orientation. However, I can vow to speak up when I hear something blatantly wrong and I can vow to hear out my brothers and sisters in the LGBT community when they speak. 

Asexual:  A person who generally does not feel sexual attraction or desire to any group of people. Asexuality is not the same as celibacy.

Bisexual: A person who is attracted to both people of their own gender and another gender. Also called/referred to as “bi”.

Cisgender: Type of gender identity where a person’s individual experience of their own gender matches the sex they were assigned at birth.

Gay: A person who is attracted primarily to members of the same sex. Although it can be used for any sex (e.g. gay man, gay woman, gay person), “lesbian” is sometimes the preferred term for women who are attracted to women.

Gender expression: A term which refers to the ways in which we each manifest masculinity or femininity. It is usually an extension of our “gender identity,” our innate sense of being male, female, etc. Each of us expresses a particular gender every day – by the way we style our hair, select our clothing, or even the way we stand. Our appearance, speech, behavior, movement, and other factors signal that we feel – and wish to be understood – as masculine or feminine, or as a man or a woman.

Gender identity: The sense of “being” male, female, genderqueer, agender, etc. For some people, gender identity is in accord with physical anatomy. For transgender people, gender identity may differ from physical anatomy or expected social roles. It is important to note that gender identity, biological sex, and sexual orientation are separate and that you cannot assume how someone identifies in one category based on how they identify in another category.

Genderqueer: A term which refers to individuals or groups who “queer” or problematize the hegemonic notions of sex, gender and desire in a given society. Genderqueer people possess identities which fall outside of the widely accepted sexual binary (i.e. “men” and “women”). Genderqueer may also refer to people who identify as both transgendered AND queer, i.e. individuals who challenge both gender and sexuality regimes and see gender identity and sexual orientation as overlapping and interconnected.

Heterosexual: This one, most if not all of you should know, but it’s a person who is attracted to someone of the opposite sex.

Homosexual: A clinical term for a person who is attracted to someone of the same sex.

Lesbian: A woman who is attracted to other women.

Intersex: A person whose sexual anatomy or chromosomes do not fit with the traditional markers of “female” and “male.” For example: people born with both “female” and “male” anatomy (penis, testicles, vagina, uterus); people born with XXY.

Transgender: This term has many definitions. It is frequently used as an umbrella term to refer to all people who do not identify with their assigned gender at birth or the binary gender system. This includes transsexuals, cross-dressers, genderqueer, drag kings, drag queens, two-spirit people, and others. Some transgender people feel they exist not within one of the two standard gender categories, but rather somewhere between, beyond, or outside of those two genders.

Transsexual: A person whose gender identity is different from their biological sex, who may undergo medical treatments to change their biological sex, often times to align it with their gender identity, or they may live their lives as another sex.

This list is mild and just a quick explanation for some who were trying to understand. Please, for the love of all things right and true in this world, respect someone’s self-identifications. If you happen to call someone homosexual, and they tell you they don’t appreciate it, LISTEN. People always ask what is the solution to fixing ignorance…it’s getting people to listen. It takes little to no effort to listen and respect someone when they tell you something you’ve said or done offends or upsets them. Respect those around you. It’s not hard. Also, I know this list is missing a few terms, I do plan on adding more to this at some point in the near future. 



For those who need a little extra effort…don’t be an asshole, okay? Have the decency to respect those who inhabit the world around you. 


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