LGBTQIA+ alphabet for dummies: The lesbian, the gay, and the bisexual

·2 min read

It’s the month of June and that means it’s Pride Month—the month where the LGBTQIA+ community waves its rainbow flag high and proud; members empowering each other and encouraging others to come out of the closet and embrace their true selves.

In spite of the growing acceptance of the community in the Philippines, there’s still a long way to go, and a lot of misinformation to sift through. One question that keeps popping up is: “What does ‘LGBTQIA+’ mean?” So, this “LGBTQIA+ alphabet” series is meant to shed light on the different communities within the LGBTQIA+ spectrum.

L is for Lesbian and G is for Gay

The definition of what it means to be lesbian or gay is pretty straightforward; they’re usually the first thing someone thinks of when they hear about the LGBTQIA+ community.

Everyone knows that a lesbian is a woman who is attracted to another woman. She is not attracted to members of the opposite sex. Similarly, a gay man is attracted to another man. He is not sexually or romantically attracted to women.

Note: While a woman who identifies as a lesbian can call herself “gay,” a man usually does not refer to himself as a “lesbian,” because the latter is associated to the female gender. Think of “gay” as an umbrella, and “lesbian” as one of the many terms that fall under this umbrella.

B is for Bisexual

A person who identifies as bisexual “experiences emotional, romantic and/or sexual attraction to more than one sex or gender,” according to the American Psychological Association.

Simply put, bisexual people aren’t confined to just “liking” men or just “liking” women. They experience some form of attraction for both men and women, though the level and type of attraction may vary. Under the bisexual umbrella are a couple more terms such as heteroflexible, polysexual, bicurious and multisexual, but knowing too many at one time can get confusing real fast, so it’s time to shift the focus on the pansexuals.

If a bisexual is attracted to two or more genders, a pansexual is attracted to all people on the gender spectrum, even those who do not identify with a specific gender. “I like the wine, not the label,” as David Rose from “Schitt’s Creek” put it when asked to explain his pansexuality.

To sum it up the L, G and B stand for Lesbian, Gay and Bisexual, respectively. Under the Bisexual umbrella are more terms like Pansexual.

Catch the next segment of the “LGBTQIA+ alphabet for dummies” series, and remember: You are not alone.

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