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LGBTQIA+ Resources

A guide to share information related to LGBTQIA (Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender, Queer/Questioning, Intersex, Asexual) conversations and studies.
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What Does LGBTQIA Mean?

LGBTQIA is an initialism that stands for multiple identities/communities.

Questioning or

Definitions from The PFLAG National Glossary of Terms.

  • Lesbian – "A woman who is emotionally, romantically, and/or physically attracted to other women. People who are lesbians need not have had any sexual experience; it is the attraction that helps determine orientation."
  • Gay – "The adjective used to describe people who are emotionally, romantically, or physically attracted to people of the same gender (e.g., gay man, gay people). In contemporary contexts, 'lesbian' is often a preferred term for women, though many women use the word 'gay' to describe themselves. People who are gay need not have had any sexual experience; it is the attraction that helps determine orientation."
  • Bisexual – "An individual who is emotionally, romantically, and/or physically attracted to the same gender and different genders. Sometimes stated as 'bi.' People who are bisexual need not have had equal sexual experience with people of the same or different genders and, in fact, need not have had any sexual experience at all; it is the attraction that helps determine orientation."
  • Transgender – "Sometime shortened to 'trans.' A term describing a person’s gender identity that does not necessarily match their assigned sex at birth. Other terms commonly used are 'female to male' (FTM), 'male to female' (MTF), and 'genderqueer.' Transgender people may or may not decide to alter their bodies hormonally and/or surgically to match their gender identity. This word is also used as a broad umbrella term to describe those who transcend conventional expectations of gender identity or expression. Like any umbrella term, many different groups of people with different histories and experiences are often included within the greater transgender community—such groups include, but are certainly not limited to, people who identify as transsexual, genderqueer, gender variant, gender diverse, and androgynous."
  • Questioning – "A term used to describe those who are in a process of discovery and exploration about their sexual orientation, gender identity, gender expression, or a combination thereof."
  • Queer – "A term used by some people—particularly youth—to describe themselves and/or their community. Reappropriated from its earlier negative use, the term is valued by some for its defiance, by some because it can be inclusive of the entire community, and by others who find it to be an appropriate term to describe their more fluid identities. Traditionally a negative or pejorative term for people who are gay, 'queer' is still sometimes disliked within the LGBT community. Due to its varying meanings, this word should only be used when self-identifying or quoting someone who self-identifies as queer (i.e. 'My cousin identifies as genderqueer.')"
  • Intersex/differences of sexual development (DSD) – "Individuals born with ambiguous genitalia or bodies that appear neither typically male nor female, often arising from chromosomal anomalies or ambiguous genitalia. In the past, medical professionals commonly assigned a male or female gender to the individual and proceeded to perform gender-affirming surgeries beginning in infancy and often continuing into adolescence, before a child was able to give informed consent. Formerly the medical terms “hermaphrodite” and “pseudo-hermaphrodite” were used; these terms are now considered neither acceptable nor scientifically accurate. The Intersex Society of North America opposes this practice of genital mutilation on infants and children."
  • Asexual – "An individual who does not experience sexual attraction. There is considerable diversity among the asexual community; each asexual person experiences things like relationships, attraction, and arousal somewhat differently. Asexuality is distinct from celibacy or sexual abstinence, which are chosen behaviors, while asexuality is a sexual orientation that does not necessarily entail either of those behaviors. Some asexual individuals do have sex, for a variety of reasons."

These resources provide additional information about words and terminology used to describe gender identity and sexuality.

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