This short (and necessarily incomplete) glossary comes with very little editorial commentary. In order to present all types equally I have hidden behind alphabetical order; underlined terms are defined within the glossary
One way or another we all appear in this list.
AFAB; FAAB; DFAB acronym, initialism ‘assigned female at birth’; ‘female assigned at birth’; ‘designated female at birth. Also, in the nuanced variation CAFAB – ‘coercively assigned female at birth’.
agender adjective used of a person who does not self-identify as having a specific gender.
androgynous adjective used of a person having a blend of female and male physical qualities.
ally noun a straight and/or cisgender person who supports or advocates LGTB+ people.
AMAB; MAAB; DMAB acronym, initialism ‘assigned male at birth’; ‘male assigned at birth’; ‘designated male at birth’. Also, in the nuanced variation CAMAB – ‘coercively assigned male at birth’.
bigender (bi-gender); bi-gendered adjective used of a person whose sense of self is made up of two genders.
cis; cisgender adjective used of a person whose gender identity matches that assigned at birth.
cross-dresser; CD noun a person who, from time to time, wears clothing (also, cosmetics and accessories) culturally associated with the opposite sex as a form of gender expression. From the verb cross-dress. In social use ‘cross-dresser’ is now generally preferred to the earlier synonym transvestite.
deadname noun a given birth name that is no longer a trans person’s chosen identity.
deadname verb to use the given birth name of a trans person (instead of that person’s chosen and preferred name).
drag king noun a female entertainer who performs as a male character.
drag queen noun a male entertainer who performs as a female character.
FTM; ftm; F2M; f2m initialism ‘female to male’. Also used as hashtag on social media.
MTF; mtf; M2F; m2f initialism ‘male to female’, Also used as hashtag on social media.
gender dysphoria; GD noun a condition, manifested by emotional discomfort or distress, that recognises a sense of mismatch between one’s biological sex and gender identity.
gender expression noun the ways in which a person may convey gender identify, typically through use of preferred name and pronoun; clothing; hairstyle; behaviour and physical mannerisms; vocal and physical characteristics.
genderfluid; fluid adjective used of a person who is not confined by a single gender and may fluctuate wholly or partially between female, male, neither or both.
gender identity noun a person’s innate awareness and understanding of being of a particular gender, which may or may not be consonant with one’s biological sex.
gender nonconforming; GNC adjective used of a person whose gender expression differs from conventional expectations of feminine or masculine behaviour.
gender nonconformity; gender variance noun behaviour or gender expression that differs from conventional expectations.
genderqueer; GQ noun a person whose identity is not confined by conventional gender dividing lines, and who may self-identify as a personal combination of all or some of the gender identities that exist outside of, between and within the traditional binary categories of female and male. Also used as an adjective.
gender spectrum; spectrum identities noun the range of gender identities that exist between and outside of the traditional binary categories of female and male.
intersex adjective used of a person with a sexual anatomy and/or chromosome pattern that is not distinctly female or male but that has characteristics of both.
LGBT initialism, noun ‘lesbian, gay, bisexual, trans’/‘transgender’/‘transsexual’ as an identifiable cultural and/or socio-political grouping. Also used as an adjective.
LGBT+ initialism, noun ‘lesbian, gay, bisexual, trans plus’ as an identifiable cultural and/or socio-political grouping where ‘plus’ indicates the potential inclusion in the list of, for instance, asexual, intersex, queer, questioning, pansexual.
LGBTQIA initialism, noun ‘lesbian, gay, bisexual, trans, queer or questioning, asexual or allied (ally)’ as an identifiable cultural and/or socio-political grouping. Other extended initialisms intended to include the wider community may be deduced.
non-binary; enby; NB adjective used of persons whose gender identity is not defined by the accustomed binary opposites of female and male or heterosexual and homosexual.
misgender verb to address or refer to a person by the wrong pronoun [see featured text at the end of glossary] or by other means that do not correctly reflect that person’s gender identity.
out adjective used of a person who openly identifies as LGBT+.
out verb to reveal an LGBT+ person’s sexual orientation or gender identity without that person’s consent. Hence outing noun an act of revealing an LGBT+ person’s sexual orientation or gender identity without that person’s consent.
pangender; omnigender adjective used of a person whose sense of self is inclusive of the many genders on the gender spectrum.
pass verb (of an LGBT+ person) to behave and be accepted in social or professional circumstances as straight or cisgender.
queer adjective used of sexual identities that do not conform to conventional expectation; self-identification as ‘queer’ bypasses the limitations or cultural connotations of LGBT norms.
questioning adjective (used as a social label) of a person whose gender-identity and sexuality is not fully defined and subject to ongoing self-determination.
trans* noun used as an umbrella classification for a complex range of distinct transgender identities that exist within the gender spectrum. (Note: the asterisk is integral to the spelling.)
transgender; transgendered; trans adjective used of a person whose gender identity differs from that assigned at birth.
transsexual noun 1. a person who wishes to physically (surgically) transition to the gender with which that person identifies; 2. a person who has physically transitioned to a gender that differs from that assigned at birth. Now considered culturally dated by the more broadly defined transgender community. Also used as an adjective.
transition noun the variable process or duration of changing from one gender identity to another which, according to personal needs, will include appropriate legal, medical and/or social elements.
transphobia noun a prejudice against trans people. Hence transphobic adjective prejudiced against trans people; displaying negative feelings towards trans people.
The use of a third person personal pronoun is particular and significant. A person may expect to be referred to by a pronoun that directly represents gender identity – he; him; his or she; her; hers or, sometimes, they; them; theirs – and, more rarely, by deliberately gender-neutral or gender non-specific variations such as (this list in incomplete, so ask first) hir; hirs, xe; xyrs or ze/zie/sie; zirs or zhe; zhe; zher. It is also worth noting that the third person plural (conventionally: they; them; theirs) may have equivalents in a less familiar form.
All of the terms under this heading are defined here as nouns – unless otherwise shown – but are used both as noun and adjective.
aromantic; aro – a person who feels no need nor appetite for romantic relationships.
asexual; ace – a person who feels no sexual attraction or desire.
bi-curious adjective used of a heterosexual person who is interested in having a same-sex experience.
bisexual; bi – a person who is romantically and/or sexually attracted to both men and women.
bi+ adjective used of a person (or persons) who is romantically and/or sexually attracted to people with gender identities that exist outside of, between and within the traditional binary categories of female and male.
gay – a homosexual (this identity is not limited to homosexual men, however the separation of sexual identities implied in LGBT might suggest otherwise).
heterosexual – a person who is sexually and/or romantically attracted to persons of the (binary) opposite sex.
homosexual – a person who is sexually and/or romantically attracted to persons of the same sex: female to female and male to male.
lesbian – a homosexual woman.
omnisexual; pansexual; pan – a person who is romantically and/or sexually attracted to people of any gender identitythat exists outside of, between and within the traditional binary categories of female and male.
straight – a person who is sexually and/or romantically attracted to persons of the (binary) opposite sex. In widespread use as an informal synonym of heterosexual and direct opposite of gay.
This glossary has benefited from the work of the LGBT+ committee of Equity.