Understanding the Difference Between Sexuality and Gender

Gender: A reflection of one’s self-image to society. This is what you identify as and how you express yourself including how your behavior and choice of how one dresses.

Sexuality: Sexual attraction and preferences towards others.

Gender:

  • Cisgender: Identifying as the gender you were assigned at birth.
  • Transgender: Identifying with a different gender than the one they were born with.
  • Transsexual: A transgender person who is or has undergone a physical change to their birth sex.
  • Agender: Not identifying with any gender.
  • Gender Fluid: Identifying with no genders, one gender, or many genders at different times in their life.
  • Intersex: Identifying as both male and female. Synonymous with the term androgenous or two-spirit.
  • Questioning: Someone who is still trying to figure out what gender identity makes them feel most comfortable.
  • Queer: A term that includes all non-cisgender sexual identities. This can be used to speak about the LGBTQIA+ community as a whole.

 

Sexuality:

  • Lesbian: A person identifying themselves as female who is attracted to other female-identifying individuals.
  • Gay: A person identifying themselves as male who is attracted to other male-identifying individuals.
  • Bisexual: A person who feels dual attraction to both male and females (typically cisgender ones).
  • Pansexual: A person who is attracted to all genders, whether they are traditionally cisgender or not.
  • Asexual: Someone who is disinterested in sexual relationships altogether.
  • Polysexual/Polyamorous: A person of any sexual orientation who is attracted to multiple partners at once. Polysexual people are disinterested in monogamous relationships.
  • Skoliosexual: Similar to a pansexual, although skoliosexual individuals are only attracted to non-cisgender people.

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