gender and sexuality

Difference Between Sex, Gender and Sexuality

For many years gender and sexuality were always thought to be one-in-the-same but in recent decades we’ve learned that whilst the gender of most people does match their sex – that’s not always the case.

What Are Sex, Gender and Sexuality

Knowing the difference can save you from awkward conversations and also shows your respect for other people.

Sex

Sex is biological. It is classed as what genitalia you have. Also it has to do with your chromosomes, genes, hormones and physical characteristics (such as facial hair, breasts, deep and high pitched voices).

Gender

Based on your sex, society expects you to act in a certain way. For example if you’re male, you have to act masculine and show little-to-no emotion; be independent and be the breadwinner. Whereas if you’re female you are expected to cook and clean and look after your partner; speak when spoken to, be ‘girly’ and wear dresses and skirts. These behaviours refer back to what the word Gender means.

Sexuality

So sexuality actually has nothing to do with who you are as a person or how you identify. It is actually to do with who you are attracted sexually too and want relationships with. For example, being heterosexual means you are attracted to the person who is the opposite sex to you and being homosexual means that you’re attracted to the same sex.

Here’s some more sexualities and their meanings:

  • Bisexuality – a person who is attracted to both the same and also the opposite sex.
  • Pansexual – a person who is attracted to the person not the sex or gender or sexuality of that person.
  • Asexual – a person who feels little to no sexual attraction to either sex or gender but they can have emotional or romantic relations with other people.

What does Transgender Mean?

Transgender is when your gender doesn’t match your sex. For example, you could have male genitalia but your gender is female and vice versa.

In some cases people may take hormones and undergo surgery to align their sex and gender to match. The term Transgender should always be used appropriately. Calling someone trans or transgender when that isn’t how they  identify or in the wrong context can be extremely offensive and should be used as an adjective, not a noun, when referring to individuals.

Non-Binary

People who don’t identify in the traditional male or female genders. Everyone ranging from scientists to sociologists are learning tottery to  understand gender as a spectrum. Increasingly, countries and states within the US and UK are offering a third box for people to check when it comes to gender on birth certificates and other documents such as: Gender X.

Other Gender and Sexuality

Others identify as bigender, meaning they identify as both men and women at varying points, or A-gender, meaning they don’t identify with any gender. Many non-Western cultures have a long history of welcoming third-gender, non-gendered, and transgender people in society. This includes the Two-Spirit folks from Indigenous American cultures and Hijra in South Asian cultures.

One of the most recent terms to gain popularity in mainstream western culture is sapiosexulity, which means being attracted to a person’s intelligence above everything else.

Shannon

Hi! I'm Shannon, I love to research different LGBTQ+ Facts and love writing about my findings and my opinions and hopefully help someone needing advice. I'm also passionate about animals and currently studying Animal Management.

Latest posts by Shannon (see all)

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *