Facebook recently introduced new gender options, resulting in mixed signals from its users.
Gender is almost always used interchangeably with sex, but they are not the same thing. Sex is a biological term and refers to your anatomy and your hormones but gender is more complex. A person’s gender has to do with society’s determination of what roles and behaviors are appropriate for men and women, which changes between cultures and different time periods.
Some groups are happy and welcome the change made by the social media giant, while others (like myself) are a little confused about what it all means. Lucky for us, the Washingston Post created a breakdown of all the terms.
Agender: This term refers to someone who is internally ungendered or does not identify with any gender.
Androgyne: A person that appears and/or identifies as neither man nor woman, presenting a gender that’s either mixed or neutral.
Bigender: A person who alternates between identification with male, female and mixed gender states.
Cis/cisgender: A person who identifies with the gender assigned at birth.
Female to male/FTM: A person who is transitioning from female to male, in terms of gender, sex or both.
Gender fluid: A person whose gender identification shifts (similar to bigender).
Gender Nonconforming/Variant: A person who doesn’t conform to social expectations of gender expression.
Gender Questioning: A person who is unsure of their gender identification, or who is experimenting with different genders.
Genderqueer: A person whose gender identity is neither man nor woman, is between or beyond genders, or is some combination of genders.
Intersex: People who are born with sexual characteristics (sex chromosomes, “sex chromosomes,” external genitalia, or internal reproductive systems) that aren’t considered “standard” for either male or female.
Male to Female/MTF: A person who is transitioning from male to female, in terms of gender, sex or both.
Non-binary: An umbrella term used to describe gender experiences, expressions and identities that fall outside of the male/female gender binary.
Pangender: A person whose gender identity is comprised of all or many gender expressions.
Trans: An umbrella term for gender identities that aren’t cis, including transsexuals, transvestites, genderqueers and others.
Transgender: A person whose gender identity differs from the social expectations for the physical sex they were born with.
Trans Man/Male: Trans individuals who identify as men, and were not assigned a male gender identity at birth.
Trans woman/female: Trans individuals who identify as women, and were not assigned a female gender identity at birth.
Transfeminine: Trans individuals who identify with femininity, and may or may not identify as (trans) women.
Transmasculine: Trans individuals who identify with masculinity, and may or may not identify as (trans) men.
Transsexual: A person who experiences a mismatch of the sex they were born as, and the sex they identify as. Some, but not all, transsexuals undergo medical treatment to match their physical sex and gender identity.
Two-Spirit: A Native American or First Nation person who has the attributes of both men and women. Historically, two-spirit people have distinct gender and social roles in their tribes.
Source: Washington Post