ALLY: in the LGBT context, a person who supports and honors sexual and gender diversity, acts accordingly to challenge homophobic, heterosexist, and transphobic remarks and behaviors, and is willing to explore and understand these forms of bias within himself/herself.

ASEXUAL: designation or self-designation for people who lack feelings of “sexual attraction” and/or “sexual desire.” There is debate as to whether this is a “sexual dysfunction” or an actual “sexual orientation.” The term is also sometimes used as a “gender identity” by those who believe their lack of sexual attraction places them outside the standard definitions
of “gender.”

ASSIMILATE: take in (information, ideas, or culture) and understand fully, to take in and incorporate as one’s own.

BISEXUAL: (1) person with emotional and sexual attraction to both men and women, not necessarily at the same time or to the same extent (2) attraction to two genders (3) attraction to one’s own gender and another.

LESBIAN: woman with emotional and sexual attraction to persons of the same gender.

CISHET: identifying with his or her assigned-at-birth gender, as well as heterosexual, or attracted exclusively to people of the opposite sex.

FEMME: (noun & adj) someone who identifies themselves as feminine, whether it be physically, mentally or emotionally. Often used to refer to a feminine-presenting queer woman.

[GNC] GENDER-NON CONFORMING: (adj) someone whose gender presentation, whether by nature or by choice, does not align in a predicted fashion with gender-based expectations.

GENDER NORMATIVE/GENDER STRAIGHT: (adj) someone whose gender presentation, whether by nature or by choice, aligns with society’s gender-based expectations

GENDER ROLES: are the socially constructed and culturally specific norms of behavior and appearance expectations imposed based on biological sex (i.e. femininity and masculinity.)

HETERONORMATIVITY: (Noun) noting or relating to behavior or attitudes consistent with traditional male or female gender roles and the assumption of heterosexuality as the norm.

HETEROSEXUAL PRIVILEGE: benefits derived automatically by being (or being perceived as) heterosexual that are denied to homosexuals, bisexuals, and queers.

FETISHIZATION: to make a fetish of.

FOLX: colloquially used to acknowledge different gender identities.

GAY: common word for men with emotional and sexual attraction to other men. Often used in reference to both genders.

GENDER BINARY: (noun) idea that there are only two genders—male/female or man/woman and that a person must be strictly gendered as either/or.

GENDER FLUID: (adj) gender fluid is a gender identity best described as a dynamic mix of boy and girl. A person who is gender fluid may always feel like a mix of the two traditional genders, but may feel more man some days, and more woman other days.

MISOGYNOIR: is misogyny directed towards black women where race and gender both play roles in bias.

OUTING: exposing someone’s sexual orientation to others, usually without their permission.

HOMONORMATIVITY: a word that addresses the problems of privilege we see in the queer community today as they intersect with White privilege, capitalism, sexism, transmisogyny, and cissexism, all of which end up leaving many people out of the movement toward greater sexual freedom and equality.

MX.: (typically pronounced mix) title that is gender neutral, replacing Mr., Ms., Miss, Mrs. It is often the option of choice for folks who do not identify within the cisgender binary.

QUEER: originally a pejorative term for gay people, many LGBTQ+ people have reclaimed this term as an inclusive and positive way to identify all non-heterosexual and/or non-gender-conforming people. Some people still are uncomfortable labeling themselves or using the word “queer,” but many younger LGBTQ+ people use “queer” as both a political statement and a reflection of their approach to sexuality and gender.

QUESTIONING: (verb, adjective) individual who is unsure about or is exploring their own sexual orientation or gender identity.

TRANSGENDER: broad term used to describe the continuum of individuals whose gender identity and expression, to varying degrees, does not correspond with their gender assignation at birth. May be heterosexual, bisexual, or homosexual in the erotic orientation.

TRANSPHOBIA: fear, hatred, or discomfort with transgender people and with the blurring of gender boundaries manifested through violence, harassment and various forms of discrimination and invisibility.