Identity – the things that make one person or group of people different from others
Gender – the state of being male or female, does not have to correlate to physical anatomy

Sex– the assignment and classification of individuals as male or female based on their physical anatomy at birth.

  Definition Very simple definition
Agender People who identify as having no gender or being without any gender identity. Not male or female People who don’t feel male or female on the inside.
Androgyne A person whose gender identity is not totally male or female, and who may or may not have an intersex condition People who feel not totally male or female but a bit of both. Sometimes their body has both female and male parts too.
Androgynous A person who does not exclusively identify as male or female, regardless of physical sex. People who don’t feel male or female on the inside even though their body might be male or female.
Asexual People who do not feel sexual attraction to others or have a desire for sex. Different from celibate people, who choose to give up sexual activity. People who don’t feel sexy towards anyone. This is different from someone who has sexy feelings but decides not to have sex.
Bigender People whose gender identity and/or expression encompasses both male and female. People who feel both male and female at the same time.
Bisexual People who are physically, romantically and/or emotionally attracted to both men and women People who are attracted romantically to both men and women.
Cis / Cis-gender A person who identifies with their birth assigned sex People who feel the same gender as their body is. (their outside body and their brain gender match.)
Come out / coming out May refer to the process by which one accepts one’s own sexuality, gender identity, or status as an intersex person (to “come out” to oneself). May also refer to the process by which one shares one’s sexuality, gender identity, or intersex status with others (to “come out” to friends, etc) When a person decides to tell other people who they are on the inside. That is when they are same sex attracted, intersex, androgyne etc.
cross-dressing A term predominantly used in the West to describe individuals who wear clothing, make-up and/or accessories not traditionally associated with the sex they were assigned at birth. Often applied to heterosexual men who occasionally wear clothes, make-up and/or accessories typically associated with women. When a person dresses as the opposite of their body gender (what body they were born with).
Drag king Women who wear an unusually exaggerated form of male clothing for entertainment. A woman who dresses up as a man (usually as part of entertainment) They are not trying to be natural. It’s like fancy dress.
Drag queen Men who wear an unusually exaggerated form of female clothing for entertainment. A man who dresses up as a woman (usually as part of entertainment) They are not trying to be natural. It’s like fancy dress.
FTM / F2M   Female to male, usually refers to a trans person who started as a biological female but present themselves as male. A person born in a female body but lives as a male and wants to be accepted as a male.
Gay A term used in some cultural settings to describe males who are attracted to males in a romantic, erotic and/ or emotional sense. Not all men who engage in same-sex sexual conduct identify as gay, and as such this label should be used with caution. A man who is romantically attracted to men. 
Gender binary A system in which sex and gender are only classified into two categories – male and female. This system is considered oppressive by many LGBTI individuals. When people are put into two groups only – male and female. Some people find this is too small a way to think about sex and gender.
Gender dysphoria Previously known as gender identity disorder, this is a medical condition, believed to be of biological origin, which results in a mismatch between the gender a person believes themselves to be and the physical sex of their body. When a person on the inside feels different to what their physical body is, when they don’t match.
Gender expression An individual’s external manifestation of gender, e.g., through behaviour, voice and speech patterns, names and pronouns used to identify oneself, clothing, grooming and social interactions. The way a person shows their gender e.g., Their name, voice, pronouns (him, her, she, he, zee, they)
Gender identity   An individual’s own internal feelings and experiences of gender, which may or may not correspond to the sex that individual was assigned at birth. A person’s own feelings about what gender they are. Sometimes this doesn’t match the body they were born with.
Gender Queer Individuals whose gender identity and/or expression fall outside the gender binary of male and female. These individuals may identify their gender somewhere between male or female or entirely outside those categories. A person whose feelings about their gender doesn’t fit into either male or female.
Reassignment surgery A surgical procedure whereby the sex organs of a person are refashioned to that of the gender in which they identify. Also known as sex reassignment surgery or genital reconstructive surgery When a person has an operation to change their outside body parts to match their inside gender.
Hermaphrodite (Derogatory) An out-of-date and offensive term for an intersex person. An unkind way of saying a person’s body is both male and female.
Homophobia The irrational fear or hatred of persons who identify as same-sex attracted, or who engage in behaviour or hold beliefs that do not confirm to rigid sex role stereotypes. When a person or people are scared of same sex attracted people or of people who don’t fit or believe that gender is only male and female.
Homosexual An out-of-date term that is sometimes broadly used to describe either a gay or a lesbian individual’s attraction to the same gender. This term should not be used when interviewing or describing a LGBT individual. An unkind way of describing a person who is same sex attracted.
Hormone therapy The process of hormonally reassigning a person’s biochemistry to match their gender identity. When a person takes hormones (medicine) to change the look of their outside body to match their inside gender. e.g. facial and body hair
Intersex people/ variations   Favoured terms include: intersex, intersex people, intersex variation, intersex trait.People with intersex variations are those who are born with atypical sex characteristics that do not fit within the stereotypical binary definitions of male or female. Intersex is a spectrum term with at least 30 or 40 intersex variations currently identified. Intersex does not refer to a gender identity.

Intersex variations can be identified prenatally, at birth, during the onset of puberty, when attempting to conceive, or by chance. They include a diverse range of hormonal, anatomic, genetic and chromosomal variations.

People with intersex variations are born with bodies that can have both male and female parts. There are lots of ways of being intersex. Sometimes these are on the inside and can’t be seen.Sometimes people don’t know they are intersex until puberty or when they are trying to have a baby.


This is different from what they feel they are.

Intersex genital mutilation (IGM) Surgeries and other cosmetic medical treatments used to ‘normalize’ intersex When an intersex person is operated on to remove some body parts to make them just female or male.
In the closet Describes a person who keeps their sexual orientation or gender identity a secret from some or all people. When a person keeps secret who they are attracted to or what their gender is on the inside. (their feelings and thoughts)
LGBTI / LGBTIQ Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender, Intersex, Queer and/or Questioning. Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender, Intersex, Queer and/or Questioning.
Lesbian Term used to describe female-identified people attracted romantically, erotically, and/or emotionally to other female identified people. A woman who is romantically attracted to other women.
MTF / M2F Male-to-female, usually refers to a trans person who started as a biological male but present themselves as female. A person born in a male body but lives as a female and wants to be accepted as a female.
Non-Gendered person A person whose core identity is neither male nor female. A person who does not feel male or female.
Non-Gendered Identity The identity [of a person] is neither male nor female. A person who does not call themselves male or female.
Pansexual A person who experiences sexual, romantic, physical, and/or spiritual attraction for members of all gender identities/expressions, not just people who fit into the standard gender binary (i.e. men and women). A person who is attracted romantically to all types of people. e.g. male, female, intersex, trans, queer, bigender.
PGPs Acronym for Preferred Gender Pronouns. Refers to the pronouns or set of pronouns that individuals would prefer others use to describe them. These are important when referring to LGBTI individuals whose gender identity and/or expression may fall outside the gender binary It means the way people want to be referred to. E.g. his, her, him, her, zee
Queer Questioning An umbrella term sometimes used to refer to the entire LGBTI community or otherwise someone who feels outside societal norms with respect to SOGIIThe process of exploring and discovering one’s own sexual orientation, gender identity, or gender expression. A way of describing people who don’t feel they fit into male /female gender groups or are exploring their gender.
Sex The assignment and classification of individuals as male or female based on their physical anatomy at birth. Naming a person male or female depending on how their body parts look at birth.
Sexual Orientation An individual’s physical, romantic and/or emotional attraction to a specific gender or genders. Describes who a person is romantically / sexually attracted to by gender.
SOGII Sexual Orientation, Gender Identity and Intersex. Sexual Orientation, Gender Identity and Intersex.
Trans or Trans* This is the preferred umbrella term. Prefix or adjective also used as an abbreviation for transgender or transsexual. Short for transgender or transsexual
Transgender Individuals whose gender identity and/or expression is not typically associated with their assigned sex at birth. This is a gender identity, not a sexual orientation. People whose outside body is not the gender they feel inside.
Transsexual An older term that is no longer considered appropriate because like the term ‘homosexuality’ it was used by the medical and psychological communities to label it as a disorder. An unkind / old-fashioned way of describing a person who is transgender.
Transvestite (Derogatory) A term that has now been replaced with “cross-dresser”. Usually refers to a man who dresses up for sexual pleasure and who does not necessarily identify with the gender they dress up as. An unkind way of describing a person who is a cross-dresser.


Glossary of terms – using simple language (general)

Term Definition
Anal sex When a person puts their penis into another person’s bottom hole for sex. To have sex into someone’s bottom (bottom sex)
Anus Can be called bottom hole. The hole where poo comes out
Appropriate When something is okay, the right thing to do or say
Arousal Feeling sexy in your body
Breasts The soft round bumps /lumps on a woman’s chest
Cervix The little hole out of the uterus. It is the hole that needs to stretch open for a baby to pass into the vagina and then out
Circumcision A small operation a doctor does when he she snips the wrinkly skin off the end of a boys penis. Is often done when the boy is a baby.
Clitoris A little bump of skin between the lips of the vulva. It feels very sensitive and can make a girl /woman feel very sexy if it is rubbed, stroked or licked.
Coercion When someone tries to trick or scare another person into doing something they wouldn’t normally do.
Conception When the sperm travels inside a woman after sex and meets the egg. The sperm goes into the woman’s egg.
Condom A thin rubber /latex cover for a man’s penis. Like a glove for a hand but thinner and sometimes covered in slippery stuff. It is used for sex to make sure that the women doesn’t get pregnant and to protect people for getting a sex infection /sickness
Consent When a person agrees to something.
Contraception Using something like a pill or a condom so that during sex, the woman doesn’t get pregnant
Contractions The special pains that women get when they are ready to give birth to a baby
Ejaculation When sticky stuff comes out of the penis during sex or masturbation
Erection When a man gets a stiff penis
Fallopian tubes The tiny tubes that the egg travels down and the sperm travel up.
Fertilisation What we call it when the egg and sperm meet and mix together to start a baby.
Foreplay The sexy things people do together before intercourse. It doesn’t have to lead to intercourse.
Foreplay Sexy things people can do together before they have intercourse. Making sexy feelings happen in yourself or another person
Foreskin The wrinkly skin on the end of a man or boys penis.
Gay/lesbian A person who falls in love with or has sexy feelings for people of the same sex. Eg. A man who falls in love (attracted to) with men, a woman who falls in love (attracted to)with women
Getting consent Asking someone if they would like to do something. Eg. Asking a person if they can kiss or touch them asking for permission
Give birth When a woman is pregnant and the baby is getting ready to come out
Giving consent When a person says yes they would like to do what was asked or have it done to them. Eg. Yes it is okay to kiss me, yes I will have sex with you
Inappropriate When something is not the right thing to do or say.
Intercourse When two people have sex, usually a man and a woman and the man puts his penis inside the woman’s vagina.
Lubrication Slippery stuff you can buy from the shop to use for sex. You can put it on a condom, penis vagina or bottom to make sex more slippery.
Masturbation When a person touches or rubs their body (penis or vulva) in a way to make themselves feel sexy
Menstruation/period When blood drips out of a woman or girls vagina once a month for a few days. It is so someday the woman or girl can have a baby.
Mutual masturbation When two people rub each other’s penis or vulva in a sexy way.
Nipples The round dark areas on a woman’s breast or a man’s chest.
Oral sex A person uses their mouth and tongue to lick suck or kiss another person’s vagina, penis or anus for the pleasure of both people.
Orgasm The strongest sexy feeling a person can get when they are having sex.
Ovaries The places (there are two) inside the woman or girl where they have all their eggs.
Placenta The big round dark red tissue that grows inside the pregnant woman and is attached by a tube to help feed the baby. (food factory)
Pornography (porn) Movies, DVDs, pictures, magazines that show people having sex or naked. Some people look at pornography to make them feel sexy.
Private When something a person does or says cannot be shared with everyone and needs to be done alone or in a place where people can’t see. Eg. Going to the toilet is private and people should not see that unless they are a helper.
Puberty The time when a child starts to grow and change in their body and feelings so they can become an adult.
Pubic hair The hair that grows around a person penis and testicles or vulva.
Public A place where you can do things or say things that is okay if lots of people can see or hear you.
Rape When a person forces another person to do sex/have sex when they don’t want to.
Safer sex A way of doing sexy stuff with another person where you are safe from getting a sex infection or pregnant
Scrotum The soft wrinkly skin bag that the testicles /balls hang in.
Semen The wet stuff that squirts out of a boy’s penis when he has sex or masturbates. It has sperm in it.
Sexually transmissible infections (STIs) The kinds of sickness you can catch when you have sex. You catch it form someone who has it already. Most can be fixed /cured with medicine or stopped by using a condom for sex.
Sperm The little things that swim in semen that have a tail and come out of a boy /man’s penis. Sperm mixes with an egg to make a baby.
Testicles The round balls inside the skin bag under a boy /man’s penis.
Umbilical cord The tube that is attached to the baby’s tummy at one end and the placenta (food factory) at the other end so the baby can breath and eat when it is growing inside it’s mummy.
Uncircumcised When a boy /man has not had the wrinkly skin cut off his penis
Urethra The little hole at the end of a boy /man’s penis or above a girls vagina that urine (wee) comes out of.
Urethra tube The tube that the urine (wee) goes through to get from the bladder to the outside of the body.
Uterus The strong place inside a woman where a baby grows when she is pregnant. It is shaped like an upside down pear.
Vagina The stretchy tube inside a woman or girl that has an opening between her legs.
Vaginal opening The hole /opening between a girl /woman’s legs that is attached to a stretchy tube which is also called the vagina.
Vaginal discharge Slippery clear or creamy white stuff that drips out of the vagina.
Wet dreams When boys have a sexy dream that causes their penis to get stiff, then a spurt of sticky stuff (semen) comes out.