LGBT+ Terminology

There are lots of terms regularly used by the LGBT+ community and its allies but for those just starting to question their identity or an ally these terms can be confusing, bellow is a list of common LGBT+ terms. This list is not complete and list some of the more commonly known identities and terminology.  

Agender: An induvial who do not align with male or female and see themselves existing without a gender identity.

Aromatic: Experiencing little or no romantic attraction to others and/or having no interest in romantic relationships/behaviors.

Ally: Someone who actively supports the LGBT+ community and their efforts.

Asexual: lack of sexual attraction towards others.

Bisexual: romantic or sexual attraction to more than one sex, gender, or gender identity. Though not necessarily at the same time.

Closeted: an individual who has not yet told other about their sexuality or gender identity.

Cisgender: someone whose gender identity aligns with what they were assigned at birth.

Gay: Someone who is emotionally, romantically, or sexually attracted to others of the same gender. This term is used by men, women, and non-binary individuals to describe themselves.

Gender dysphoria: clinically diagnosed distress caused by a person’s assigned birth gender is not the same as their gender identity.

Gender expression: The external appearance of one’s gender identity, usually expressed through clothing, body characteristics, voice, use of makeup or contouring, and behavior.

Gender-fluid: A persons whose gender identity is not fixed and may utilize multiple gender expressions.

Gender identity: How one perceives themselves and what gender they use to describe themselves.  

Gender non-conforming: A broad term describing those whose gender expression does not fit into a clear gender identity.

Genderqueer: A broad term used to describe induvial whos gender identity is not male or female.

Heterosexual: individuals who are attracted to the opposing sex; straight.

Intersex: individuals who are born with both male and female characteristics.

Lesbian: A woman who is emotionally, romantically, or sexually attracted to other women. A gay woman.

LGBT+: an acronym for “lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, and beyond.”

MLM: any men who love and have sex with other men.

Non-binary: A way to describe an induvial who does not identify as a man or woman.

Outing: Exposing a member of the LGBT+ community to others without permission.

Pansexual: Someone who can experience emotionally, romantically, or sexually attraction regardless of gender expression or identity.

Queer: a broad term to describe those who do not identify as straight or cis-gendered.

Sexual orientation: the emotionally, romantically, or sexually attraction felt towards others. This is different from gender identity.

They/Them: alternate pronouns that are gender neutral.

Transgender: Individuals whose gender identity or expression do not conform to the gender they where assigned at birth.

WLW: any woman who has sex with other women.

Ze; Zir: Alternate pronouns that are gender neutral.

Many of the sexual or gender identities have flags that represent those identities and are used during pride parades to show support. Below are some LGBT+ flags you might see at the next Pride parade.


Understanding pronouns. (n.d.). Retrieved April 08, 2021, from

Glossary of terms. The Human Rights Campaign. Retrieved April 08, 2021, from

NATA. (2018, February). LGBTQ+ Terminology 101. Retrieved April 08, 2021, from

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