Non-Binary Genders

Hint: there are many. Check this wiki for a long but likely not complete list.

Also, the lovely Rose Marie, who you will find @bodyimageguru on Twitter, has this super rad list: http://www.bodyimageguru.com/genderspectrum.html

I’m not going to talk about all the individual terms here, but the more general umbrella terms, which will hopefully make things a little clearer.

Non-Binary genders means exactly what it says: they are genders that don’t fit in the dreaded gender binary. There are many ways to identify as non-binary, and with all these things, it is important to note that some people who fall under these umbrella categories would rather use a specific term, so be respectful.

Let’s go!

  • Transgender. This one pulls a double shift: it can be used for people who are binary gender, but their gender doesn’t match the one assigned at birth, but it can also just be used for people who’s gender simply goes outside society’s “norms”. It is important to note also that someone may identify as non-binary transgender, which simply means that they are not the gender assigned at birth, but they’re not the binary opposite of that gender either.
  • Non-Binary. an umbrella term for people who don’t identify as just male or female. Important to note, non-binary can be used as an identity in itself.
  • Intergender. Intergender people have a non-binary gender and were born with intersex bodies. This has been historically conflated with androgyne/androgynous, which is a neutral blend between male and female.
  • Genderqueer. This is a non-normative gender identity or expression. I talked about it last time.
  • Agender. This is people who have no inner feeling of gender, so they are without. It is as simple as that.
  • Neutrois. As the name suggests, a neutral blend of gender identities. This can be different from androgyne as androgyne tends to refer to a blend of the binary genders.
  • Genderfluid. This is for people who feel they have different gender identities at different times. In the same way as non-binary and transgender can double up with other identities, so can genderfluid.

That all looks rather scary, but it’s actually pretty simple when you break it down to umbrella categories like this. And whilst no one is expecting you to learn the minutiae of all the individual labels, you should at least know the different branches of gender expression, and above all be respectful.

Your non-binary friend doesn’t want to hear a long story about how you find it difficult to remember they are genderqueer trans guy when all they really want is for you to use the pronouns they asked and respect them as a person.

Good luck!

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