Resources

Glossary

Sex – the biological characteristics of a person when they are born, including their genitalia, chromosomes, and gonads

gender identity – the gender with which a person identifies internally

gender expression – the way in which a person expresses their gender identity, can include clothing, hair styles, nail painting

Sexuality – a person’s sexual/romantic attraction to other people

Straight – a sexuality in which someone is attracted to another person on the other side of the gender spectrum

Heterosexual – a sexuality in which someone is attracted to another person on the other side of the gender spectrum

Homosexual – a sexuality in which someone is attracted to another person of the same gender

Gay – a sexuality in which someone is attracted the another person of the same gender. This word is often used to describe men who are attracted to men, but increasingly so also for women who are attracted to women

Bisexual – a sexuality in which someone is attracted to people of two or more genders. This term can also be used in a binary way for people who are attracted to both men and women

Asexual – a term used to describe someone who is not sexually attracted to others

Demisexual – a term used to describe someone who is not originally attracted to someone because of their physical appearance, but is attracted to someone because of their personality

Heteroflexible – a sexuality in which someone identifies primarily as straight, but may also be attracted to people of other/multiple genders

Homoflexible – a sexuality in which someone identifies as primarily homosexual, but may also be attracted to people of other/multiple genders

Lesbian – a sexuality in which a woman is attracted to other women

Pansexual – a sexuality in which someone is attracted to people of multiple genders

Queer- an umbrella term used to describe sexualities that are not straight/homosexual. Some people also use this term to describe genders that are not cisgender

Questioning – a term used to describe the process of discovering your sexuality and/or gender identity

Sapiosexual – a sexuality where a person is attracted to another person because of their mind, before their physical appearance

Scoliosexual – a sexuality in which a person is attracted to non-binary people

AFAB – an acronym that stands for ‘assigned female at birth’

AMAB – an acronym that stands for ‘assigned male at birth’

CAFAB/CAMAB – An acronym that stands for ‘coercively assigned female/male at birth’

ENBY – A pronunciation of the letters NB, a colloquial reference to Non-Binary

Agender – a term used to describe someone who does not have a gender identity

Androgynous – Refers to having gender presentation characteristics that is neither and/or both masculine and feminine.

Bigender- a term used to describe someone who has two or more gender identities

Cis Gendered – a term used to describe people whose gender identity aligns with the sex they were assigned at birth

Cis Man – a term used to describe someone who identifies as a man and was born biologically male

Cis Woman – a term used to describe someone who identifies as a woman and was born biologically female

Genderfluid – a term used to describe someone whose gender fluxuates

Genderqueer – a term used to describe someone whose gender does not have a particular word on the gender spectrum

Gender Nonconforming – a term used to describe a person and or action that does not conform to the hegemonic gender binary of masculine and feminine and set of prescribed actions the result from this.

Intersex – Individuals born with sex characteristics (genitals, gonads, chromosomes) that do not fit typical binary notions of male or female.

Non-binary – The status of having a gender identity that isn’t male or female.

Pangender – a term used to describe someone who has two or more gender identities

Transfeminine – a term used to describe someone who is transgender and identifies as more feminine than masculine

Transgender – an umbrella term used to describe someone whose gender identity does not match the biological sex they were born with

Transmasculine – a term used to describe someone who is transgender and identifies as more masculine than feminine

Transsexual – an outdated term used to describe people who are transgender

Trans Man – a term used to describe a transgender man

Trans Woman – a term used to describe a transgender woman

Two Spirit – refers to a person who has both a masculine and a feminine spirit, and is used by some First Nations people to describe their sexual, gender and/or spiritual identity.

sexual identity – a person’s sexual/romantic attraction to other people

Transgender Studies – the academic study of people who are transgender as well as the societal attitudes towards transgender people

Queer Theory – Queer theory is a relatively new academic theory, that was established in the 1990s, and contests many of the set ideas of the more established fields it comes from by challenging the notion of defined and finite identity categories, as well as the societal norms that create binaries. As well as being an academic theory it has also had significant impact on radical and activist spaces.

drag artist – Someone who dresses and acts as a gender other than their own at least in part as a performance or artform.

drag king – A non-masculine identifying person who dresses and acts as a man, often parodying hyper-masculinity, at least in part as a performance or artform

third gender – A term used in some cultural and geographic contexts to describe someone who doesn’t fit into the man – woman binary. Due to its inability to describe the gender continuum, this term is rarely used outside of its historic or geo-cultural context.

singular they – a gender neutral pronoun, used instead of/as well as gendered pronouns such as he/she

Pronoun – a word used in the third person to describe another person, eg. he, she, they, fae, ae

gender neutral pronoun – a pronoun other than he/she

Ally – a person who supports other in communities they are not part of, eg a cisgender person who supports the transgender and gender diverse communities

trans* – an umbrella term used to describe genders that are not cisgender

coming out – a process many people who identify as non-cisgender and/or non-heterosexual go through in which they tell people they are not cisgender and/or heterosexual

Outed – a term used to describe the process when someone who is non-cisgender and/or non-heterosexual is not in control of their coming out and whose identity is told to other people without their permission

Sexual orientation –  a person’s sexual/romantic attraction to other people

Sexual fluidity – a term used to describe a person’s sexuality that fluctuates

Passing – a term used to comment, often rudely or with negative connotations, on if a transgender person looks like the gender they identify with.

Transvestite

transgenderism This is not a term commonly used by transgender people. This is a term used by anti-transgender activists to dehumanize transgender people and reduce who they are to “a condition.”

Internalised transphobia – transphobia that is held by a transgender person

Transphobia – the negative beliefs and attitudes that some people hold against transgender people

Bi-phobia – the negative beliefs and attitudes that some people hold against those who are bisexual

Homophopia – the negative beliefs and attitudes that some people hold against those who are not straight

Deadnaming – the use of a transgender person’s name prior to their choosing a new name

Gillick competence –  a term used in medical law to decide whether a child (under 16 years of age) is able to consent to his or her own medical treatment, without the need for parental permission or knowledge.

5-alpha reductase deficiency – is an intersex variation in which people with XY chromosomes and testies have differing hormone levels which impacts on the development of external genitalia.

Androgen Insensitivity Syndrome (AIS) – is an intersex variation in which people with XY chromosomes have a reduced or no uptake of the sex hormone androgen.

Aphallia – is an intersex variation in which a baby is born without the phallus (penis or clitoris)

Clitoromegaly (large clitoris) – is a term to describe a larger than expected clitoris. This term is not a diagnosis and Clitoromegaly can be caused by a range of factors, both congenital or acquired.

Congenital Adrenal Hyperplasia (CAH) – Is a condition affecting the making of cortisone in the adrenal glands that is present in both XX and XY individuals. It is an intersex variation in people with XX chromosomes as there is more androgen produced than is typically present in people with XX chromosomes resulting in the growth of masculine genitalia and secondary sex characteristics.

Gonadal dysgenesis (partial and complete) – Is an intersex variation found in people with both XY and XX chromosomes which impacts on the development of the gonads and the production of sex hormones.

Hypospadias – Is a term used to describe penis’s where the opening of the urethra (pee-hole) is not located at the tip of the penis but rather along the underside of the shaft or behind the penis.

Klinefelter Syndrome – Is an intersex variation in which an individual has an XXY chromosome pattern. This intersex variation impacts on the sex hormone levels produced in the body.

Micropenis – Refers to a penis that is 2.5 standard deviations shorter than the average penis at the same age and development.

Mosaicism involving ‘sex’ chromosomes – Refers to when some cells in an individual have one chromosome pattern, whereas others have a different pattern. Most chromosomal intersex variations can have a mosaic version, for example Mosaic Klinefelter Syndrome

MRKH (Mullerian agenesis; vaginal agenesis; congenital absence of vagina

Ovo-testes – Is an intersex variation that impacts people with XX chromosomes where internal genitalia and/or gonads are undeveloped or absent.

Hermaphrodite – Refers to an organism that has what is typically associated with both Male and Female genitalia. Historically the term has also been used as a stigmatising and misleading way to describe individuals that have genitalia that have not match societal norms.

True hermaphroditism – An archaic term to describe the rare intersex variation, now known as ovo-testes, in which an individual has both ovarian and testicular tissue.

Progestin – A hormone often used along with antiandrogens and estrogens in feminizing gender affirming hormone therapy.

Progestin Induced Virilization – An intersex variation in which a person with xx chromosomes forms partial or complete male external genitalia due to virilizing hormones present neonatally.

Swyer Syndrome – an intersex variation in which a person is born without functional gonads, known as gonadal streaks. These are minimally developed gonad tissue in place of testes or ovaries. A child born with Swyer will not develop most secondary sex characteristics without hormone replacement because streak gonads are incapable of producing the sex hormones (both estrogen and androgens) that bring about puberty.

Turner Syndrome – An intersex variation in which a person is born with only a single X chromosome instead of an XX or XY. This impacts primarily on the formation of secondary sex characteristics.

Post-op – a word used to describe a transgender person who has had gender reassignment surgery. This word relies on the unnecessary medicalisation of transgender people.

Pre-op – a word used to describe a transgender person who has not had gender reassignment surgery. This word relies on the unnecessary medicalisation of transgender people.

Transition – a process in which a person changes their gender identity from that which was assigned to them at birth. The transition process can, but does not need to, include social and/or medical transition

Complete hysterectomy – Is the surgical removal of the cervix and uterus. This surgery is sometimes, but not always, undertaken by transgender men as part of their transition.

Sigmoid colon neovagina technique – Is a technique of neovagina that uses the sigmoid section of the colon as opposed to skin grafts to create the new vagina. While the operation is more complicated than skin grafts, it is considered to deliver better outcomes.

Penile inversion surgery – Is an operation in which the skin of the penis is inverted and used as the lining of a new vagina. Penile inversion surgery is considered the gold standard of M to F gender affirmation surgery.

Bilateral mastectomy –  Is an operation in which the breast tissue of a person is removed through large incisions under below the nipple.

Chest reconstruction or augmentation – Is a gender affirmation surgical procedure that uses saline or silicone implants to enhance the size and shape of your chest. This procedure is often undertaken by M to F or non binary individuals to achieve a more feminine looking appearance.

Breast prostheses – Also known as breast forms, these are synthetic breasts which can be placed in a bra or under clothing to give the appearance of breasts.

Top Surgery – a term used to refer to surgery that removes a person’s breasts

Bottom surgerya term used to refer to surgery that changes a person’s genitalia to align with their gender identity

Sex reassignment surgery – The procedure or procedures through which a transgender or non binary person alters the form and or function of their body to affirm their gender identity.

normalization surgery – Is a term used to refer to the non consensual and unnecessary surgery sometimes performed on intersex individuals to alter their genitals to conform to binary gender ideals. This surgery is often performed at or soon after birth, but has life long consequences.

gender reassignment surgery – The procedure or procedures through which a transgender or non binary person alters the form and or function of their body to affirm their gender identity.

gender confirmation surgery – The procedure or procedures through which a transgender or non binary person alters the form and or function of their body to affirm their gender identity.

gender-affirming surgery – The procedure or procedures through which a transgender or non binary person alters the form and or function of their body to affirm their gender identity.

gender dysphoria – A term, often used in a medical context, to describe the feeling of having a different gender identity than that which was assigned at birth.

Penectomy – The surgical removal of the penis.

Orchiectomy – The surgical removal of one or both testicles.

Vaginoplasty – The surgical process of creating a vagina. This can be achieved through a number of different methods including penile inversion surgery and Sigmoid colon neovagina technique.

masculinizing genitoplasty – An umbrella term for a number of surgical measures undertaken on intersex people, often on babies without consent, to make the genitalia more typically masculine in appearance.

feminizing genitoplasty – An umbrella term for a number of surgical measures undertaken on intersex people, often on babies without consent, to make the genitalia more typically feminine in appearance.

Metoidioplasty – A surgical procedure to create a phallus from a hormonally enlarged clitoris and the surrounding skin. This procedure is performed along with urethra lengthening to bring the end of the urethra to the tip of the penis. This is a common gender affirming surgery for transmen.

Phalloplasty – A surgical procedure to produce a phallus from a donor site on the body, often the forearm or thigh. This procedure is performed along with urethra lengthening to bring the end of the urethra to the tip of the penis. This is a common gender affirming surgery for transmen.

Transsexual – The term transsexual is sometimes used to imply that a person has or desires to have some form of gender affirmative surgery. For others it is an archaic term that is now considered insulting. Like many other words, the specific meaning of transsexual varies with time, location, and the individual. Before assuming that someone uses any word to identify their gender, it is respectful to ask them which words they use.

Vaginectomy – Is the surgical removal of all or part of the vagina. This procedure is often, but not necessarily, performed as a gender affirming surgery for F to M trans individuals

bilateral salpingo-oophorectomy

facial feminization surgery

scar remediation therapy

Informed Consent

circumcision