Cisgender

The term “cisgender” (often shortened to “cis”) is used to refer to a person whose gender identity is consistent with the sex they were assigned at birth. To fully understand the concept of gender identity, it is important to recognize the difference between sex and gender. Sex refers to a person’s biological and physical attributes,…

Gender Binary

The gender binary is a system that pairs together sex (which is based on an individual’s reproductive anatomy) and gender (which refers to the socially constructed ideas and expectations that a culture has for certain sex). More specifically, it classifies two distinguishable, distinct, and oftentimes contrasting genders: males who identify as men and females who…

Overview of Sexual Orientations

Sexual orientation is a term that describes a person’s sexual, emotional, or romantic attraction, as well as the gender(s) of the people they are attracted to.1, 2 Sexual orientation differs from gender identity in that gender identity describes a person’s psychological identification with a particular gender, rather than their attraction to people.  The Kinsey Scale—developed…

Homosexuality and Religion

Disclaimer: In this article, for the sake of simplicity and consistency, we will be using the term “homosexual” as a blanket term to represent all queer, bisexual, pansexual, questioning, and other non-heterosexual orientations. If you would like to learn more, you can read our Sexual Orientation and Gender Identity article. If you need resources or…

Homophobia

According to the Merriam-Webster Dictionary, homophobia is the irrational fear of, aversion to, or discrimination against homosexuality or homosexuals.1 However, people commonly describe homophobia as less of a fear and more of a prejudice and an intolerance toward those within the LGBTQ community.2 Whether it is believed to be an inherent and inborn quality or…