With one week to the 2016 Mardi Gras, it’s time to sit the test: how well versed are you in the LGBTIAP vernacular?
Spoiler alert: if you’re not even sure what ‘LGBTIAP’ means, it’s a sign to read on.
It has been spectacular to watch in recent years as our non-straight community has expanded our language of ‘gay’ or ‘straight’ to encompass the myriads of subsets; including lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, intersex, transgender and so many more.
So leading into the 2016 Mardi Gras festival, so you can show your support for the community, we’ve decoded some of the terms you might be hearing.
LGBTI and LGBTIAP
These are the most common abbreviations you will encounter when referring to the non-straight community. They stand for:
Lesbian – A lesbian is a person who self-describes as a woman and who has experiences of romantic, sexual, and/or affectional attraction solely or primarily to other people who self-describe as women.
Gay – A gay man is a person who self-describes as a man and who has experiences of romantic, sexual and/or affectional attraction solely or primarily to other people who self-describe as men.
Bisexual – A bisexual person is a person of any gender who has romantic and/or sexual relationships with and/or is attracted to people from more than one gender. Some people who fit this description prefer the terms ‘queer’ or ‘pansexual’, in recognition of more than two genders. Although ‘bi-‘ technically refers to two, it is often used by people who have relationships with and/or attractions for people of more genders than just women or men.
Transgender – Trans and Transgender are umbrella terms often used to describe people who were assigned a sex at birth that they do not feel reflects how they understand their gender identity, expression, or behaviour. Most people of trans experience live and identify simply as women or men; most do not have ‘a trans identity’. In addition to women and men of trans experience, some people do identify their gender as trans or as a gender other than woman or man. People from Aboriginal/Indigenous and Torres Strait Islander communities may use sistergirl or brotherboy. People from societies around the world with more than two traditional genders use culturally specific language.