Language is a powerful tool to connect people. Different communities develop their own vernaculars to express themselves. As a way for us to foster an environment that people can co-exist freely, here are some of the LGBTQIA+ terminologies one should be familiarized with.
Note: This is not an exclusive list. Terms are fluid and subject to change.
Advocate is a person who actively supports a particular cause such as ending bigotry, educating others, and supporting social equity.
Ally is a person, typically straight and/or cisgender, who takes action in supporting members of the LGBTQIA+ community.
SOGIE is an abbreviated word for Sexual Orientation, Gender Identity, and gender Expression. Each individual has a sexual orientation, Gender Identity, and gender expression.
LGBTQIA+ is an acronym for lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, queer/question, intersex, asexual/ally, and more. It stands as a name of a community with diverse gender identities and sexual orientations not limited to those specified in the acronym itself.
Biological Sex refers to the objectively measurable anatomy, hormones, and chromosomes. Often referred to as simply “sex” or specifically as “sex assigned at birth”. A female has vagina, ovaries, and XX chromosomes; a male has penis, testes, XY chromosomes; intersex is a combination of the two.
Sexual Orientation refers to an individual’s emotional, romantic, and sexual attraction to persons of the same and/or different sex.
Asexual refers to a person who has little to no interest in sexual activity with other people yet they may experience romantic (but not sexual) attraction. Often called “ace”.
Bisexual refers to a person who is emotionally, romantically, and sexually attracted to both men and women or some people of their gender or another gender. It may also be identified as romantic or sexual attraction to people of any sex or gender identity, also known as pansexual. Also termed as “bi”.
Pansexual is a person who experiences romantic, physical, or sexual attraction for all members of all gender identities and expression. Also known as “pan”.
Lesbian is a woman who is primarily attracted romantically, physically, sexually, and/or emotionally to another woman.
Gay is a person attracted to members of the same gender. It can be used to refer to men who are attracted to other men or women who are attracted to women. It can also be an umbrella term attributed to the queer community as a whole, or as an individual identity label for anyone who is not straight. According to Human Rights Watch, this term is usually used here in the Philippines to refer to an individual who is assigned male at birth but expresses or identifies themselves as a woman. source
Questioning refers to people who are still unsure and are in the process of exploring their sexual orientation or gender identity.