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TERMINOLOGY

2SLGBTQIA+:

The acronym used by the Government of Canada to refer to the Canadian community.

2S: at the front, recognizes Two-Spirit people as the first 2SLGBTQI+ communities;

L: Lesbian; G: Gay; B: Bisexual; T: Transgender; Q: Queer; I: Intersex, considers sex characteristics beyond sexual orientation, gender identity and gender expression;

+: is inclusive of people who identify as part of sexual and gender diverse communities, who use additional terminologies.

Aromantic:

A person who lacks romantic attraction or interest in romantic expression. An aromantic person’s sexual and romantic orientations may differ (e.g. aromantic lesbian), and they may have romantic and/or sexual partners.

Bisexual/
Biromantic:

A person who is sexually and/or romantically attracted to two or more genders.

FTM:

A person who lacks romantic attraction or interest in romantic expression. An aromantic person’s sexual and romantic orientations may differ (e.g. aromantic lesbian), and they may have romantic and/or sexual partners.

Gender Expression:

Gender expression refers to the various ways in which people choose to express their gender.

Gender-fluid:

A person whose gender identity varies over time and may include male, female and non-binary gender identities.

Gay:

A person who is sexually and/or romantically attracted to people of their same sex or gender identity. Traditionally this identity was reserved for men, but it has been adopted by people of all gender identities.

Gender Dysphoria:

A medical diagnosis often required by health providers and/or health insurance plans before prescriptions for hormones or gender affirming surgeries will be provided. It can be understood as discomfort or distress experienced by a person who feels their sense of their gender identity differs from their body, based on societal expectations.

Heteronormative:

The belief that heterosexuality is the ‘normal’ sexual orientation. Also

refers to the belief that female and male gender roles are fixed.

LGBTI:

Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender, Intersex. This is the internationally recognized acronym.

MTF:

A person, who was assigned the male sex at birth, but identifies as female. Also, trans woman or transwoman. MTF is the acronym for Male-to-Female.

Non-Binary
(also ‘genderqueer’):

Referring to a person whose gender identity does not align with a binary understanding of gender such as man or woman. It is a gender identity which may include man and woman, androgynous, fluid, multiple, no gender, or a different gender outside of the “woman—man” spectrum.

Asexual:

A person who lacks sexual attraction or interest in sexual expression. An asexual person’s sexual and romantic orientations may differ (e.g. biromantic asexual), and they may have sexual and/or romantic partners.

Cisgender:

A person who identifies with the gender they were assigned at birth.

Gay:

A person who is sexually and/or romantically attracted to people of their same sex or gender identity. Traditionally this identity was reserved for men, but it has been adopted by people of all gender identities.

Gender Identity:

Internal and deeply felt sense of being a man or woman, both or neither. A person’s gender identity may or may not align with the gender typically associated with their sex. It may change over the course of one’s lifetime.

Gender-normative:

Refers to when people conform to what is considered culturally appro- priate feminine and masculine behavior.

Gender Identity:

Internal and deeply felt sense of being a man or woman, both or neither. A person’s gender identity may or may not align with the gender typically associated with their sex. It may change over the course of one’s lifetime.

Gender-normative:

Refers to when people conform to what is considered culturally appro- priate feminine and masculine behavior.

Homophobia:

The fear, hatred, or aversion of people who experience same-sex attraction.

Intersex:

An umbrella term to capture various types of biological sex differentiation. Intersex people have variations in their sex characteristics, such as sex chromosomes, internal reproductive organs, genitalia, and/or secondary sex characteristics (e.g. muscle mass, breasts) that fall outside of what is typically categorized as male or female.

Queer:

Historically a derogatory term used as a slur against 2SLGBTQI+ people, this term has been reclaimed by many 2SLGBTQI+ people as a positive way to describe themselves, and as a way to include the

many diverse identities not covered by common 2SLGBTQI+ acronym.

Sexual Identity:

How a person identifies whom they are sexually and romantically

attracted to (e.g. lesbian, gay, bisexual, heterosexual, etc.)

Biphobia:

The fear, hatred, or aversion of people who are attracted to more than one gender.

Coming Out:

The process of coming to terms with one’s sexual orientation and/or gender identity and disclosing it to others. Others typically assume heterosexuality and fixed gender states that fit into the binary of F and M, therefore, coming-out is an ongoing process.

Gender Dysphoria:

A medical diagnosis often required by health providers and/or health insurance plans before prescriptions for hormones or gender affirming surgeries will be provided. It can be understood as discomfort or distress experienced by a person who feels their sense of their gender identity differs from their body, based on societal expectations.

Heterosexual/
Heteroromantic:

A person who is sexually and/or romantically attracted to people of a

different gender than themselves.

Homosexual:

(*no longer commonly used in English):

This term is no longer in common use. See “gay” and “lesbian”. The term homosexual has fallen out of favour as it is associated with the historic medical understanding of same-sex attraction as a mental illness. However, equivalents of “homosexual” are commonly used in French and other languages.

Identity:

For example: clothes, voice, hair, make-up, etc. A person’s gender expression may not align with societal expectations of gender. It is therefore not a reliable indicator of a person’s gender identity.

Heterosexual/
Heteroromantic:

A person who is sexually and/or romantically attracted to people of a

different gender than themselves.

Lesbian:

Typically a woman who is sexually and/or romantically attracted to other women.

Two-Spirit
(also Two Spirit or Two-Spirited):

An English term used to broadly capture concepts traditional to many Indigenous cultures. It is a culturally-specific identity used by some Indigenous people to indicate a person whose gender identity, spiritual identity and/or sexual orientation comprises both male and female spirits.

Transgender
(also ‘trans’):

A person whose gender identity differs from what is typically associated

with the sex they were assigned at birth.

Transphobia:

The fear, hatred, or aversion of people whose gender identities differ from

the sex they were assigned at birth.

Know more terminology? Let us know!

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