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What does LGBTQ mean?

The acronym “LGBT” stands for Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual and Transgender and refers to individuals and communities that are not heterosexual or those that do not identify with the sex they were born with.

The term was first used in the 1990s with the purpose of including various sexes and genders. With time, the term evolved to LGBTQ+ with the inclusion of Queer (Q) and the addition of other identities. LGBT2Q+ is also commonly seen, with “2” meaning Two spirit.

With the inclusion of diverse identities, the term used by the community can be a little confusing to most people, whether it’s someone new or an ally to the community.

The expanded acronym used by the community is LGBT2QQIAAP which stands for Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender, Two spirit, Queer, Questioning, Intersex, Asexual, Agender, and Pansexual.

Lesbian refers to a woman who’s only attracted to another woman. Its counterpart is called Gay, a man attracted to another man. A bisexual, on the other hand, is romantically, sexually or emotionally attracted to more than one gender.

Someone who is trans does not identify with the gender they were born with. Two spirit refers to the identity of a person having both a masculine and feminine spirit. This is commonly used by indigenous people or descendants of the First Nations.

Queer is a term that includes all identities whereas Questioning refers to someone who questions their sexual identity. Intersex is someone whose sex characteristics can’t easily be distinguished as man or woman while an Asexual person has little to no desire for sex.

Agender is a person who identifies themselves as genderless or someone who has little to no connection to the traditional concept of man and woman. Meanwhile, Pansexual is someone who is romantically or sexually attracted to any gender identity, whether binary or non-binary.