By: Alyssa N.

Nowadays, we live in a time and age where it is accessible to learn information, through technology and the internet. This ease of access can come in handy when people want to inform themselves. For example, with the LGBTQ+ community, the terms in the community are pretty well known, at least on the surface, but there’s more to it than just the surface level.

The LGBTQIA+ acronym, sometimes written as LGBTQ+, stands for: 

  • Lesbian

  • Gay

  • Bisexual

  • Transgender

  • Queer

  • Intersex

  • Asexual

Note: language and words are always evolving, and within the community these terms can mean different things to different people, but these are their basic definitions: 

The L stands for lesbian, which means women who are attracted to other women, regardless if they are cisgender* or transgender. The G stands for gay, which mostly means men that are attracted to other men, regardless if they are cisgender or transgender. Sometimes, however, people of other genders may use this term to talk about same-gender attraction. The B is for bisexual: people that are attracted to two or more genders (typically men and women, but sometimes people of other genders, too). The T stands for transgender: according to transgender is “a term used to describe people whose gender identity differs from the sex they were assigned at birth.” For example, a woman who was assigned male at birth is a transwoman. Q stands for queer, an umbrella term for people who don’t identify as straight or cisgender. The I stands for intersex, people who are born with reproductive organs, hormones, or chromosomes that don’t stereotypically fit into the box of “male” or “female.” For example, this might look like someone who is born with XXY chromosomes, or someone who is born with a mix of male and female reproductive organs. The A stands for asexual: people who experience little to no sexual attraction. (Note: This isn’t to say that asexual people don’t have sex or have a libido; some do.) 

These are all of the basic terms in the LGBTQIA+ community. There are lots more, which is what the plus sign at the end of the acronym represents, but these are the main ones that people usually know more about.

* Cisgender: someone whose gender identity aligns with their sex assigned at birth 

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