What do the letters in the acronym LGBTQIA+ refer to and what does the acronym mean?

LGBTQIA+ it’s a acronym whose origins date back to the 1980s and which we hear used more and more often both on traditional media and on social media. However, it is not a given that everyone knows his meaning and above all to which words refer to the various Initial letters that make up the acronym. Using a short and concise article from the Treccani Encyclopedia as a source, we clarify the issue, without wanting to go into the merits of political issues. For starters, they exist many versions of the acronym (starting from the shortest LGBT+) but, regardless of the letters used and its length, the various acronyms are used to indicate theset of various sexual and gender minorities. In this sense, we include both all those people who do not identify with the gender commonly associated with their biological sex, according to the male-female binary, and who do not identify or do not want to identify with a specific gender, and also all those who have a sexual orientation other than heterosexuality.

Here, be careful, if in the previous sentence it seems to you that the same characteristic has been repeated in different ways, it is good to clarify that we are instead talking about different things. L’gender belongingthat is, feeling one gender rather than another, means feeling intimately male, female or not identifying with either one or the other (or both) regardless of one’s biological sex. Gender belonging, however, says nothing about thesexual orientation which, instead, indicates the people you are attracted to, regardless of the gender you feel you belong to.

Having made this necessary clarification, let’s see What do the various letters correspond to? that make up the acronym LGBTQIA+ without going into the merits of the characteristics of each group:

  • L: Lesbians (women who feel sexually attracted to other women)
  • G: Gay (men who experience sexual attraction towards other men)
  • B: Bisexual (those who feel sexually attracted to both men and women)
  • T: Transsexuals and transgenders (those who adopt a gender different from their biological sex)
  • Q: Queer and/or gender questioning (those who do not conform to the male/female binary)
  • THE: Intersexuals (those with sexual characteristics that do not fall into traditional binary categories)
  • TO: Asexuals (those who do not experience sexual attraction)
  • +: the + is used for all other declensions of gender and/or sexual orientation

Finally, it should be noted that the acronym and its use are not exempt from criticismsboth by some conservative fringes who consider it a political attempt to spread an alleged ideology (called in those circles “gender ideology” and aimed at destroying the traditional family and the supposed natural order on which society is based), and by some members of the same sexual minorities theoretically represented by the acronym (often for specific reasons relating to their group or for the desire not to define themselves entirely).