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LGBTQ+: What it means and other important terms

June marks Pride Month, where people from the LGBTQ+ communities and their allies call for the self-affirmation, dignity, equality, and increased visibility of LGBTQ+ people.
As a teacher to many LGBTQ+ students, and as an ally, I know that it is sometimes confusing and hard to understand what it all means. Fortunately there is growing awareness around the issues of sexual orientation, gender identity, and the role of gender in our societies. However, there is still much inequality and oppression towards different LGBTQ+ minorities so it is key to learn more about it and understand the different terms used.

Watch the video to learn more about it:

TRANSCRIPT

Podcast intro:

Welcome to the InFluency podcast. I’m Hadar and this is episode number 230. Today we are going to talk about LGBTQ+ pride.

Hey, everyone. Welcome to the InFluency podcast. Welcome back, if this is not your first time. I hope you are having a beautiful, beautiful day. When we are releasing this episode, it is June, actually the end of June, closer to the end of June. And June is pride month, apart from it being the exact middle of the year. Which, by the way, can you believe it has already been six months since the beginning of the year? I don’t know about you, but to me it was super quick.

So anyway, it is June and it is pride month. And I wanted to take advantage of this opportunity and talk about terms that you might be hearing a lot, and maybe you don’t know exactly the different terms in English. So, I wanted to talk about it here. I think it’s important. I think it’s important to understand, I think it’s important to know how to talk about it. You know, equality starts with the language. And this podcast is all about language. So let’s tune into today’s episode. Thank you so much for being here. And I hope you enjoy it.


Video transcript:

Hey everyone. It’s Hadar. Thank you so much for joining me. The month of June, which is when this video is released, is pride month, where the world’s LGBTQ+ communities come together and celebrate the freedom to be themselves. LGBTQ+ pride is the promotion of the self affirmation, dignity, equality, and increased visibility of people who identify themselves with this community. And why pride? As opposed to shame and social stigma.

LGBTQ+ is an acronym, meaning Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender, and Queer or Questioning, and the ‘+’ stands for other specific sexual or gender minorities. We’ll talk about what goes into that in just a minute. But before that, I’d like to share relevant terminology that might be helpful.

First, biological sex. Biological sex is assigned at birth, based on anatomy, chromosomes, or hormones. And there we have male and female. We also have gender identity. It’s really how you feel inside. And that’s usually when we use man or woman. Sexual orientation is basically who you like, who you are attracted to. And here we have heterosexual or homosexual. We can also have bisexual.

A cisgender is a person whose gender identity corresponds with their birth sex. So for example, a person who identifies as a man and whose biological sex is male is a cisgender man. Now, the cisgender man could be heterosexual, could be homosexual still because he identifies as man, and he was born as a male, then he would be considered a cisgender man. Same goes for a cisgender woman.

So from here, let’s talk about the LGBTQ acronym. L stands for lesbian. A lesbian is a female who experiences romantic love or sexual attraction to other females. G (LGBTQ) – G stands for gay. Now, gay has two meanings. The narrow meaning: the narrow meaning means a male who experiences romantic love or sexual attraction to other males. But we also have a broader meaning for the word gay, which means a male or a female who experiences romantic love or sexual attraction to people of their own sex.

B is bisexual. Bisexual is attraction to more than one gender. So it could be a man or a woman who is attracted to both men and women. T stands for transgender. Transgender is an umbrella term for people whose gender identity differs from what is typically associated with the sex they were assigned at birth. And here we can have a trans woman and a trans man.

Now, it’s not the same. Transgender is not necessarily the same thing as transsexual, which is a transgender person who desires to also align their body with their sexual and gender identity. Which generally includes medical procedures. Q stands for queer. Queer is an umbrella term for sexual and gender minorities that are not heterosexual or cisgender.

Now, the letter Q can also refer to questioning – the questioning of one’s gender, sexual identity, sexual orientation, or all three – is a process of exploration by people who may be unsure, still exploring and concerned about applying a social label to themselves for various reasons.

So, all of the things that we talked about are labels. But remember that all of this is a spectrum. And some people may find themselves on different places on the spectrum or might be moving from one place to another. And this is why Q helps them identify themselves without putting a specific label on who they are, how they identify themselves, and who they’re attracted to.

Now, listen, the most important thing is to be respectful and use the terms that each person prefers. So we talked about LGBTQ, but there’s also the plus (+). The plus stands for other communities and gender identities. For example: pansexual, asexual, intersex, androgynous, non-binary, genderqueer, and more.

So, if you want to educate yourself and learn more about those communities and gender identities, I’m going to link more information in the description below. I hope this video helped you understand better some of the terms we discussed. I’m sure you were exposed to a lot of these terms. And sometimes you have to make sense of all of it because there’s a lot. And sometimes, if you don’t learn it properly, it’s not always clear. So, that’s it.

And to all my LGBTQ+ community members and allies, I wish you a happy pride month. Love is love. Have a beautiful rest of the day. I love you all. And I’ll see you next week in the next video.

The InFluency Podcast
The InFluency Podcast
230. LGBTQ+: What it means and other important terms
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Here are some important terms to know:

  1. Biological sex: the physical traits (anatomy, chromosomes, or hormones) with which one is born
  2. Gender: the range of characteristics associated with femininity and masculinity and differentiating between them. This may include sex-based gender roles according to society, and gender identity. Most cultures use a system in which gender is divided into two categories. However, some societies have more than two genders. Most scholars agree that gender is a central characteristic for social organization.
  3. Gender identity: how you experience and define your gender
  4. Gender expression or performance: how you present your gender and how those presentations are viewed based on social expectations
  5. Romantic and sexual attraction: who you are (or are not) drawn to
  6. Male – a person who was born with physical traits of a male
  7. Female – a person who was born with physical traits of a female
  8. Intersex – a person who was born with a variation in physical traits that did not allow them to be distinctly identified as exclusively male or female
  9. Man – a person who considers himself a man and is most comfortable referring to his personal gender in masculine terms. However, his gender role is man only if he demonstrates typically man characteristics in behavior, dress, and/or mannerisms
  10. Woman – a person who considers herself a woman and is most comfortable referring to her personal gender in feminine terms. However, her gender role is woman only if she demonstrates typically woman characteristics in behavior, dress, and/or mannerisms
  11. Cisgender – a person whose gender identity corresponds with their birth sex (no matter what their sexual orientation is, or what their gender expression or performance is). For instance, a person who identifies as a man, and whose biological sex is male, is a cisgender man. That cisgender man could be heterosexual, homosexual, bisexual, or asexual.
  12. Genderqueer/Nonbinary – an umbrella term for gender identities that are not exclusively masculine or feminine
  13. Queer – an umbrella term for sexual and gender minorities that are not heterosexual or cisgender
  14. Transgender – an umbrella term for people whose gender identity differs from what is typically associated with the sex they were assigned at birth
  15. Heterosexual/Straight – a person who is attracted to someone of the opposite gender
  16. Homosexual/Gay – a male who experiences romantic love or sexual attraction to other males
  17. Homosexual/Gay/Lesbian – a female who experiences romantic love or sexual attraction to other females
  18. Bisexual – a person who can be attracted to more than one gender but not necessarily any gender
  19. Pansexual – a person who can be attracted any other person, regardless of their gender
  20. Asexual – a person who doesn’t feel sexual attraction to anyone, or has low or absent interest in sexual activity
  21. Questioning – a person who explores their gender, sexual identity, sexual orientation, or all three, or is concerned about applying a social label to themselves for various reasons

For more information about LGBTQ+ pride:

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One Response

  1. Thank you for this breakdown. I feel like I need to keep reading these over and over to get the terms straight and understand the distinctions, and this kind of video is very helpful.

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