For any of you left dazed and confused by all this Pride Week talk, here’s a handy little post to help you figure out who’s who and what’s what in the field of LGBTQ identity.
We’ll start off with an easy one. A lesbian is – as everyone should know – a woman who is attracted to women. Only women. Definition wise, there is no grey area here. However, some women who are attracted to both sexes, but prefer women, may refer to themselves as lesbians.
Another fairly straightforward one; gays are men who are attracted solely to other men. Although some may find women attractive, but don’t identify in another category. While it is a male term, ‘gay’ can be applied to other genders or agendered people if they so choose.
Don’t ask which gender they prefer – it can only lead to offending them.
If you do ask them and they prefer the opposite sex, don’t be an ass and tell them that they’re straight. I will find you, and I will hit you.
This one is a little tricky since there are different types within the umbrella identifier.
Male to Female (MtF) can either be someone who was born biologically as a man, but mentally identifies as a woman or
someone who was born as a male but has undergone the surgery to fit their female identification.
Female to Male (FtM) is the reverse of that; they can either be someone who was born biologically as a woman, but mentally identifies as a man or
someone who was born as a female but has undergone the surgery to fit their male identification.
When communicating with anyone who may fall under this category, it is important to be sensitive to their identity, not their biology. Asking what they were born as, or what they are biologically is a dick move. Don’t be a dick.
Queer is used as a general term that can be applied to any of the above identities or any that were not listed – excluding heterosexuals.
Originally used as a derogatory term, it has been taken back by the community and can be safely used under most conditions.