This week I decided to share information that may be of benefit to those who do not understand the acronyms LGBTQIA. It is important for readers to understand what these many letters represent in order to make informed decisions that will lead to forming a view point of the community. The acronym represents a community that is often shunned, made to feel guilty about their lifestyle, yet increasingly being hesitantly supported by a heterosexual world. The "L" is used to refer to women who are labeled as lesbians, females who are attracted to females. The "G" represents men who identify as gay, men who are sexually attracted to males. Many people are aware of these two labels so they are not as misunderstood as some of the following. "B" stands for those who identify as bisexual while the "T" identifies individuals who are transgender.
Ongoing confusion from those in the heterosexual world continues to be an issue that bisexual and transgender individuals are routinely confronted about explaining. According to Joe Kort, Ph.D., LMSW author of "Straight Men who have sex with other Men"(2006), the "Q" represents queer, a term that was mainly in the 1980's and before considered to be offensive is now being embraced. The "I" stands for intersex which is someone born with both male and female chromosomes and the final is "A" which has two representations one meaning allies the other meaning asexual. Allies are those who consider themselves "gay friendly" while asexual refers to those who experience attraction yet the attraction doesn't present in a sexual manner. My intention for this post is to provide clarity for those who have questions and or have been confused. Perhaps this information will lead to the addition of more Allies to support the LGBTQIA community.