LGBTQI+: the complete guide to the acronym

Learn everything you need to know about the LGBTQI acronym as well as the different identities included in this community, to deepen your understanding and sensitivity towards diverse sexual orientations and gender identities.

Written by Alain VEST

Last published at: January 19th, 2024

LGBTQI+ brings together different sexual identities. Therefore, it serves to defend and accept those not traditionally represented. Then, this guide explains each letter of LGBTQI+. Finally, he emphasizes the importance of being informed and respectful.

Foreword on the term LGBTQI+

LGBTQI – sexual and gender identity

LGBTQI – sexual and gender identity

LGBT is an acronym that has been used for a long time. In the 21st century, a Q has been added for "queer". We are talking more and more about different genders and sexual orientations, which makes the acronym richer. However, some propose using LGBTQIA to include intersex and asexual people. There is also LGBTQQIP2SA which adds even more. It may seem complicated. At Bearwww, we simply use LGBTQ. Sometimes we add a + so as not to exclude anyone.

Better understand LGBTQI+ gender identities

From cisgender to agender, including transgender and non-binary, there are a multiplicity of gender identities . Understanding these notions allows us to fight against discrimination and transphobic violence.

LGBTQI+: different sexual orientations

First and foremost, humanity presents a varied and colorful spectrum. Indeed, we identify several sexual orientations, from homosexuality to pansexuality. However, the diversity is rich and complex, presenting a wide range of nuances. Despite this, understanding all these nuances often proves difficult.

Thus, it is important to become familiar with each sexual orientation. This knowledge helps to avoid mistakes and blunders since sometimes we are insensitive due to ignorance. However, understanding these differences takes time and energy. It is exclusively in this way that we build a welcoming and empathetic society where everyone feels valued and respected in their own identity.

Furthermore, understanding is necessary to cultivate harmonious interpersonal relationships. The ultimate goal is to encourage peaceful coexistence among people, regardless of their sexual orientations. Therefore, we must embrace our differences, not ignore them. By doing this, it creates a space where everyone can flourish, everyone feels comfortable with themselves while respecting others.

Combating LGBTQI+ phobias through education

LGBTphobias, such as homophobia and biphobia, often stem from ignorance. Indeed, knowing the realities of the LGBT community is a step towards more tolerance. Therefore, it is like fighting fear and hatred of LGBT people through education. In short, this means that we can counter disrespect and intolerance by educating others. For example, let's take the fear of spiders as an example. If, in fact, you know little about them, you may be afraid. But, if you learn their usefulness and that they won't harm you, your fear can stop. So, in the same way, by knowing and understanding LGBT people, we can reduce negative attitudes towards them.

LGBTQI+: towards a more inclusive society and world of work

First, understanding these concepts helps promote more equality in the workplace and society, including using good language, fighting discrimination, and valuing difference. Additionally, it means embracing all uniqueness, empowering minorities, and creating caring environments. In addition, it encourages having discussions, understanding oneself and accepting others. So, education and learning are important, as is the role of leaders. Ultimately, every action helps create a diverse and just world.

The LGBTQI+ glossary, a valuable awareness tool

First, this simple glossary explains the key terms of LGBTQI+ challenges. Next, it is a practical guide for those who want to know more.

To begin, it highlights basic definitions such as queer, cisgender, or bisexual. Then, the guide gradually moves into more complex concepts like intersectionality and gender fluidity.

In fact, beyond its educational purpose, this glossary also aims to consolidate a culture of respect and openness. He emphasizes the importance of continuous dialogue and the dissemination of knowledge.

Ultimately, we make the glossary for everyone, regardless of gender or identity.

The LGBTQI+ community | Why all these letters?


The meaning of words: the LGBTQI+ index


  • Ageism: Ageism is discrimination based on age. It can affect both young people and the elderly.
  • Agender: An agender person does not identify as either a man or a woman. She prefers neutral pronouns.
  • Allosexual: An allosexual feels sexual attraction to others. It's the opposite of asexual.
  • Ally: An ally supports the LGBTQI+ community. It helps fight discrimination.
  • Androgynous: An androgynous person exhibits both masculine and feminine traits. She has a non-binary gender identity.
  • Aromantic: An aromantic does not feel romantic attraction. He finds happiness in non-romantic relationships.
  • Asexual/Asexuality/As: Sexual orientation varies widely, marked by sexual attraction or desire. However, asexuality differs from celibacy, voluntary abstinence despite desire. Oddly enough, some asexuals have sex and experience varying degrees of attraction. There are therefore several forms of asexuality. For example, some without sexual attraction may experience romantic, physical, or emotional attraction, distinct elements of identity. Some are physically and romantically attracted to women, others physically to all genders, but emotionally only to men.


  • BDSM: Refers to various activities and relationships, often eroticized, not all explicitly sexual. Some are outside of general sexual and relational norms.
  • Bigender: Non-binary gender identity, incorporating feminine and masculine aspects.
  • Binding: Process of visual breast reduction, important for gender affirmation, but must be done safely.
  • Biphobia: Hate towards bisexuals, pansexuals and omnisexuals, present within and outside the LGBTQ+ community.
  • Bisexual/Bi: A person attracted to both sexes or regardless of gender.
  • Two-Spirit: Native American term for sexuality and gender, held by leaders and healers. Can include masculinity and femininity, but has other interpretations.


  • “Celleux” is an inclusive word, merging “those” and “those”. He seeks to equalize the genders.
  • Cisgender : Cisgender people are those whose gender identity matches their sex at birth.
  • Cisnormativity: Cisnormativity imposes gender expectations, often based on misconceptions. See also Heteronormativity.
  • Cissexism : Cissexism privileges cisgender people and can lead to transphobia, harming transgender people.
  • Coming out : First of all, coming out, or "coming out of the closet", refers to the fact of making one's sexual orientation or gender identity official to one's family, friends, colleagues. Next, it should be noted that this is a courageous act. Therefore, it allows LGBTQI+ people to be their authentic selves. Finally, this act encourages these people to live in accordance with their identity.
  • Bear Community : The queer community includes cis, trans, and gender diverse men. Mostly tall, hairy and masculine, they seek to feel desired and appreciated. They value friendship and self-esteem through community unity. These are bears, cubs, otters, wolves and admirers.
  • Leather Community: The leather community brings together those who enjoy leather, often for sexual activities. It is linked to fetish communities like sadomasochism and bondage. Although connected to the queer community, she is not 'exclusively gay'.


  • “Deadname”: This is the former first name of a transgender person. She changes it to better match her gender identity.
  • Demisexual: This is a person who is sexually attracted only to those they love.
  • Degendering: This involves expanding the roles of women beyond gender stereotypes to promote equality.
  • Discrimination: It is an illegal practice that targets a person because of their gender identity or sexual orientation, especially in the workplace.
  • Rainbow flag or Peace flag : The rainbow flag has been the symbol of the LGBTQI+ community since 1978. It wears a diversity of colors: red, orange, yellow, green, blue, purple. Gilbert Baker , American graphic designer and activist, is the creator. Each color of the flag represents a value or meaning, such as life, healing, peace, nature, serenity and spirit.
  • Transgender Pride Flag:
  • Monica Helms, a transgender American, created the trans pride flag in 1994. Then, this flag demonstrated trans pride and rights. In particular, the blue bands symbolize boys and the pink ones, girls. Finally, the white in the center represents people who are intersex or transitioning.
  • Gender dysphoria : If you are a boy but feel like a girl, you have “gender dysphoria”. It's like wearing shoes that are too small every day. It's hard. But let's all remember, respect and understand the feelings of others.
  • Degender : Degendering breaks gender stereotypes. This helps women access more positions and sectors. It also encourages equality and respect for everyone's choice. Someone may identify as transgender, non-binary, or queer. To match their gender identity, some choose gender transition, which can be medical, social, or both.


  • Kinsey Scale: Alfred Kinsey created a scale in the 1940s. It measures sexual attraction. This ranges from 0 (heterosexual only) to 6 (homosexual only). It shows that sexuality is not just heterosexual or homosexual. [ Identiversity ]
  • Inclusive company : First, an inclusive company welcomes the LGBTQI+ community. Then, it establishes mechanisms for equality and the inclusion of all identities. This may, therefore, involve the use of non-sexist language. Furthermore, LGBTQI+ models are valued within this company. In addition, the fight against discrimination is actively carried out there. Finally, to close, inclusive human resources policies are put in place.


  • Feminism washing : Feminism washing is a practice used by certain brands and companies that adopt feminist arguments in their communication campaign in order to sell more products. This opportunistic use of feminism can be seen as hypocritical and devoid of real commitment to gender equality.
  • FTM: Female to Male. It is a term for those born female who feel like they are male. Some people prefer “man in transition.” It is less used in 2020 but remains relevant in certain cases, such as in medicine.


  • Gay : The term "gay" refers to a man who has a romantic and/or sexual attraction exclusively to men. It is a sexual identity that is part of the diversity of sexual orientations within the LGBTQI+ community.
  • GPA or Surrogacy : GPA is a method of procreation. It involves implanting an embryo into the uterus of a surrogate woman. This woman will perform the child for another person or a couple. However, in France, surrogacy is prohibited. It is considered contrary to the principle of the unavailability of the human body. This ban is established by the bioethics law of 1994.
  • Genderfluid : A genderfluid person changes their gender depending on their feelings. Sometimes she feels like a woman, sometimes a man, or something else. It is specific to each person, therefore different for everyone.
  • Gender Unicorn: A model explains a person's identity: birth sex, gender identity and expression, physical and romantic attractions. The Gender Unicorn shows that these aspects, except birth sex, exist on spectrums. Gender Unicorn is available at *The popular Genderbread Person was plagiarized from Gender Unicorn. The two models do not constitute exhaustive representations of identities since they are complex subjects.
  • Gray: Also known as Gray-A or Gray-Ace/Aro. This is an umbrella term that describes people who experience attraction occasionally, rarely, or only under certain conditions. Includes Graysexual and Grayromantic identities. [ Stone wall ]


  • Moral harassment : Moral harassment consists of repeated comments or behaviors. They degrade a person's working and living conditions. In the presence of harassment, we can take different recourses. The industrial tribunal is one of the options. You can also appeal to the criminal judge. The Defender of Rights is another option. Moral harassment is a serious offense. It is punishable by a fine and can lead to prison. The fine can reach up to 30,000 euros. Additionally, the prison sentence can be up to two years. Ultimately, the perpetrator may have to pay damages.
  • Heteronormativity : "Heteronormativity is a system promoting heterosexuality alone. Indeed, homosexual people are ignored, made invisible. Heterosexual relationships appear to be the norm. Furthermore, many companies now offer training to their employees ·s. The goal is to deconstruct heteronormativity. In this way, they hope to foster a more inclusive corporate culture."
  • Homophobia: Oppression, discrimination and hatred directed against members of the LGBTQ+ community. See also Heterosexism.


  • Gender identity : “Gender identity is an intimate and personal experience. It is the gender to which we feel we belong. At birth, a sexual identity is assigned. Then, society assigns a gender identity: female or man. There are those who do not recognize themselves in the assigned gender identity. They may define themselves as non-binary or transgender. In business, inclusive writing is a tool. It is used to represent all gender identities . He also fights against discrimination."
  • Iel : “Iel” is a neutral pronoun going beyond feminine/masculine. Using “iel” recognizes non-binary identities in our society and work.
  • Intersectionality : Intersectionality is a term coined by Kimberlé Williams Crenshaw, an American Afrofeminist academic, in 1989. It refers to a diversity of discriminations that intersect, reinforce each other and accumulate. For example, a black lesbian woman may experience sexism, racism and lesbophobia. In business, we must respect everyone's identity to fight discrimination and encourage an inclusive culture.
  • Intersex : An intersex person does not fit into the male/female framework at birth. Non-consensual interventions are sometimes made to define a gender, which is ethically questionable.


  • Kink: (Naughty, Naughty) These are non-typical sexual practices, with agreement between people to explore their desires and fantasies. This includes BDSM, leather, wax play, etc.


  • Gender-neutral language : Gender-neutral language represents diverse gender identities. He avoids a binary representation (man/woman) in the dialogue. We use neutral terms, like “people” instead of “men” or “women”. We also use neutral pronouns like “iel” replacing “he” or “she”. Next, inclusive writing in business illustrates gender-neutral language. Indeed, it promotes the inclusion of all gender identities.
  • Lesbian : A lesbian woman is a woman who has a romantic and/or sexual attraction exclusively to women. It is a sexual orientation that is part of the diversity of sexual orientations within the LGBTQI+ community.
  • LGBTphobia : LGBTphobia is fear or hatred against LGBTQI+ people. It causes discrimination and violence. We must fight against this to ensure equality and inclusion for all.
  • LGBTQI+: Abbreviation for Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender, Queer, Intersex and Asexual. The “+” represents all other identities not included in the short acronym. Generic term often used to refer to the community as a whole. LGBTQIA to intentionally include and educate queer, intersex, and asexual communities as well as a myriad of other communities under our umbrella.


  • To misgender : To misgender is to use a gender that does not correspond to a person. This is wrong and hurtful to trans or non-binary people.
  • Microaggression : Microaggressions are actions or words that may seem normal, but are hurtful to the LGBTQI+ community. They can be jokes, remarks or actions that are harmful.
  • Morinommer (or deadnamer) : "Misnaming a transgender person is disrespectful. It brings to mind a moment that does not conform to their current identity. It is essential to respect their chosen first name. Always use it to recognize their gender identity."


  • Non-binary : A non-binary person is someone whose gender assigned to them at birth does not match them. Non-binary people may have a fluid gender identity and identify as neither exclusively male nor exclusively female. They may define themselves by other gender identities, such as genderqueer, genderfluid, agender, etc.


  • Sexual Orientation : Sexual orientation refers to a person's emotional, romantic and/or sexual attraction to other people. There is a diversity of sexual orientations, including homosexuality, heterosexuality, bisexuality, pansexuality, asexuality, etc. Sexual orientation does not define a person's gender identity, but rather who they can feel attraction and love with.
  • Outing : Outing refers to announcing a person's sexual orientation and/or gender identity without their consent. This is a violation of privacy and a potentially dangerous practice for LGBTQI+ people who may experience discrimination, attacks or rejection following this non-consensual disclosure.


  • Pansexual (Pan), Omnisexual (Omni): Terms used to describe people who have romantic, sexual, or emotional desire for people of all genders and sexes. Has some overlap with bisexuality and polysexuality (not to be confused with polyamory).
  • PMA or Medically Assisted Reproduction : PMA refers to medical techniques allowing people or couples having difficulty procreating to have a child. This includes artificial inseminations, in vitro fertilization (IVF), and other medical procedures to facilitate conception. Some LGBTQI+ people, particularly female couples, also use assisted reproduction with sperm donation to start a family.
  • Polyamory/Poly: Denotes being consensually open to multiple romantic relationships at the same time. Some polyamorous people (polyamorous people) view “polyam” as a relationship orientation. Sometimes used as an umbrella term for all forms of ethical, consensual, loving non-monogamy.
  • Polycule: Describes a connected network of people and relationships, all of whom are involved in some way emotionally, sexually, or romantically with at least one other person within the polycule. Each polycule, or part of it, may have its own structures, boundaries and connections. [ Polyamproud ]
  • Polygender, gender: Exhibiting characteristics of multiple genders, deliberately refuting the concept of only two genders.
  • Polysexual: People who have romantic, sexual, or emotional desires for more than one gender. Not to be confused with polyamory (above). Has some overlap with bisexuality and pansexuality.
  • Positive: Shortened duration for HIV-positive people. For example, saying “I am HIV positive” is a way of voluntarily disclosing one's HIV status.


  • Queer : “Queer” used to be an insult. Now some LGBTQI+ people use it proudly. These people do not see themselves as only male or female.


  • Gender Spectrum : Gender is not just male or female. There are many other possibilities, such as non-binary or genderqueer. Everyone can define their own genre.
  • Transgender : "A transgender person has a gender identity different from that assigned at birth. This assignment is based on biological characteristics. These people may experience discomfort. It is due to the mismatch between their gender identity and their body. This may encourage them to transition. The transition may be social, medical, or both. The goal is to be consistent with their gender identity."
  • Cross-dressing : In cross-dressing, a person wears clothing and accessories typically associated with the gender opposite to that assigned at birth. Cross-dressing is a gender expression that does not determine the gender identity of the person practicing it. Some cross-dressers may be cisgender, while others may be transgender or non-binary.

LGBTQI+: Start exploring with Bearwww.

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