The Complete LGBTQIA+
Glossary of Terms

Explore The Complete LGBTQIA+ Glossary of Terms: a comprehensive source offering clear, respectful definitions and insights into gender identities, sexual orientations, cultural terminology, historical places, key figures and more. Ideal for allies and community members seeking to understand and learn about the rich diversity and history of the LGBTQIA+ community.

Disclaimer: This glossary includes a wide range of terms related to the LGBTQIA+ community, including some that may be considered derogatory or offensive by some individuals. Our aim in presenting these terms is solely educational and informative, striving to provide a comprehensive overview of the language used within and about the LGBTQIA+ community. It is important to approach this content with sensitivity and awareness of the diverse experiences and perspectives within the community. Our goal is to empower through knowledge, fostering a deeper understanding and respect for all individuals. We encourage readers to use this glossary as a tool for positive engagement and learning.


A "100-footer" is a term used to describe someone whose sexual orientation or gender identity is immediately apparent or recognizable from a distance, metaphorically "100 feet away." This term is often used humorously or affectionately to refer to individuals who exhibit characteristics, behaviors, or styles strongly associated with being LGBTQIA+, making their identity quite obvious to others. It highlights the visibility of certain LGBTQIA+ identities and can be embraced as a form of self-identification or used descriptively by others within the community.


In ballroom culture, "10s" refers to a perfect score awarded to participants during competitions at balls. Achieving "10s" means that a contestant has impressed the judges across all criteria for their category, showcasing exceptional talent, style, and adherence to the theme. Categories in ballroom competitions can range from vogueing, realness, and runway to fashion looks and performance. Earning "10s" is a significant accolade, symbolizing not only mastery in the specific category but also recognition and respect within the ballroom community. This term embodies excellence and the highest form of acknowledgment from one's peers and judges in the vibrant and competitive space of ballroom culture.

6-Color Pride Flag

The 6-Color Pride Flag is a universally recognized symbol of the LGBTQIA+ community, consisting of six horizontal stripes, each a different color of the rainbow: red, orange, yellow, green, blue, and violet. Originally designed by Gilbert Baker in 1978, the flag has undergone several variations, but the six-stripe version has become the most widespread. Each color represents a different aspect of life and the community: life (red), healing (orange), sunlight (yellow), nature (green), harmony/peace (blue), and spirit (violet). This flag serves as a beacon of pride, diversity, and unity for LGBTQIA+ individuals around the world, symbolizing the community's fight for equality, visibility, and acceptance.


AC/DC refers to a person who is bisexual, indicating an attraction to both men and women. The term originates from the electrical acronym for alternating current/direct current, metaphorically used to describe someone who enjoys both 'currents' or genders sexually and/or romantically. It's one of the many terms that highlight the diversity and fluidity of sexual orientation, embracing the spectrum of human attraction beyond heterosexual or homosexual definitions.


Act Up (AIDS Coalition to Unleash Power) is an international, grassroots political group founded in 1987 in New York City by activists from the LGBTQ+ community and their allies as a response to the devastating AIDS crisis. It was formed to draw attention to the AIDS pandemic and to advocate for legislation, medical research, and treatment efforts that address the crisis. Act Up has been pivotal in applying pressure on both governmental and health organizations to develop effective HIV/AIDS policies, reduce drug prices, and increase the availability of treatment. Their tactics include direct action, public demonstrations, and civil disobedience, famously encapsulated in their slogan "Silence = Death."



AIDS stands for Acquired Immune Deficiency Syndrome, a condition caused by the human immunodeficiency virus (HIV). It represents the most advanced stage of HIV infection, characterized by a severely compromised immune system, which leads to increased vulnerability to opportunistic infections and certain types of cancers. AIDS has a significant historical and emotional impact, having disproportionately affected gay and bisexual men, as well as transgender individuals, particularly during the early years of the epidemic in the 1980s and 1990s. The crisis led to widespread activism to secure funding for AIDS research, treatment, and to combat stigma and discrimination against those living with the disease. It has played a pivotal role in shaping LGBTQIA+ advocacy, community cohesion, and public health policy.

AIDS Crisis

The AIDS Crisis refers to the period, primarily in the early 1980s through the 1990s, when the AIDS epidemic first emerged and devastated communities worldwide, with a significant impact on the LGBTQIA+ population, particularly gay and bisexual men and transgender individuals. Characterized by widespread fear, stigma, and loss, this period saw the LGBTQIA+ community mobilizing to provide support for those affected, advocate for medical research, and fight against discrimination. Activists played a critical role in raising awareness, challenging government inaction, and fostering a sense of urgency around the epidemic. The crisis highlighted issues of health inequality and contributed to the visibility and activism of the LGBTQIA+ community, leading to advances in LGBTQIA+ rights and HIV/AIDS treatment and prevention.

AIDS Epidemic

The AIDS Epidemic denotes a global health crisis that began in the late 20th century, notably impacting the LGBTQIA+ population, especially gay and bisexual men, alongside other groups. This period was marked by significant loss, fear, and stigma, but also by remarkable activism within the LGBTQIA+ community. The epidemic catalyzed a movement for better healthcare, research into HIV/AIDS, and greater rights and recognition for LGBTQIA+ individuals. It exposed systemic health inequalities and galvanized efforts to address them, leading to advancements in treatment, prevention, and understanding of HIV/AIDS. The LGBTQIA+ response to the epidemic has been a powerful example of community resilience, advocacy for health rights, and the fight against stigma and discrimination.



Ability often revolves around recognizing and respecting the diverse capacities and skills individuals possess, regardless of physical, mental, cognitive, or emotional differences. It's a concept that challenges societal norms and ableist perceptions, advocating for inclusive practices and environments that accommodate and celebrate all forms of human diversity. This perspective emphasizes the importance of creating spaces and communities where every individual, including those with disabilities, can fully participate and contribute, highlighting the intersection of disability rights with LGBTQIA+ rights.


Ableism refers to discrimination, prejudice, and social prejudice against people with disabilities. Within the LGBTQIA+ community, ableism can manifest through exclusion or lack of accessibility in spaces, events, and discussions, often overlooking the intersectionality of LGBTQIA+ identities with disability. It includes assumptions that all members of the community are able-bodied, which can lead to the marginalization of disabled LGBTQIA+ individuals. Efforts to combat ableism within the community involve advocating for inclusive practices, such as accessible event venues, sign language interpreters, and consideration of various disabilities in planning and communications to ensure full participation of all members, regardless of physical or mental ability.


Abrosexual describes a person whose sexual attraction fluctuates over time. This orientation is part of the diverse spectrum of human sexuality within the LGBTQIA+ community. Unlike static sexual orientations, abrosexuality is characterized by a dynamic nature; an abrosexual person may experience varying levels of attraction to different genders at different times. These changes in attraction are not necessarily predictable or chosen. The concept of abrosexuality acknowledges the fluidity of sexual attraction and challenges the notion of fixed sexual orientations, providing a more inclusive understanding of sexual diversity.

Abrosexual Flag

The Abrosexual Flag represents abrosexuality, a sexual orientation under the broader LGBTQIA+ spectrum where an individual's sexual attraction towards others can change over time. This fluidity means that the type or intensity of attraction can vary significantly, not tied to any specific pattern or timing. The flag is designed to symbolize this spectrum of sexuality with varying colors that represent the potential for change and diversity in sexual attraction. It typically features stripes of different colors, each signifying the wide range of sexual attractions abrosexual people may experience, including attractions that are not strictly defined by traditional sexual orientations.

Abstain / Abstinence

Abstain or abstinence refers to the choice to not engage in certain sexual activities or all sexual activity. This choice can be due to a variety of reasons including personal, health-related, religious beliefs, or as a part of risk reduction strategies to prevent STI transmission. In LGBTQIA+ discussions, abstinence is sometimes highlighted in sexual health education as a valid option for preventing HIV and other sexually transmitted infections.


"Ace" is a colloquial term used to refer to individuals who identify as asexual. Asexuality is a sexual orientation characterized by a lack of sexual attraction towards anyone, regardless of gender. People who identify as ace may have little interest in engaging in sexual activity, though they may experience romantic attraction and form deep, emotional bonds with others. The asexual spectrum includes a wide range of identities, including demisexuals (those who only experience sexual attraction after forming a deep emotional connection) and grey-asexuals (those who experience sexual attraction infrequently or under specific circumstances). It's important to note that asexuality is a valid orientation and part of the broader spectrum of human sexuality.

Ace Of Diamonds

Ace of Diamonds refers specifically to individuals who identify as asexual but also experience romantic attraction exclusively towards women. It's a term that falls under the asexual (ace) spectrum, helping to describe the varied experiences of asexual individuals in terms of whom they are romantically attracted to, separate from sexual attraction. This distinction is important within the ace community to communicate and understand the different ways asexual individuals experience romantic attraction, emphasizing that a lack of sexual attraction does not necessarily mean a lack of romantic feelings.

Ace Of Hearts

Ace of Hearts is a term used to describe individuals who identify as asexual but also experience romantic attraction exclusively towards people of the same gender. This designation is part of the broader asexual spectrum, emphasizing the difference between sexual and romantic attraction. It allows for the expression of romantic interest and relationships without the presence of sexual attraction, affirming the validity of a wide range of asexual experiences and identities. By specifying romantic attraction, the Ace of Hearts identity helps clarify the nuanced experiences of asexual individuals, contributing to a deeper understanding of the diverse ways people experience attraction.

Ace Of Spades

Ace of Spades refers to individuals who identify as asexual and experience romantic attraction exclusively towards people of a different gender. This term helps to specify the romantic preferences of asexual individuals, distinguishing them from their sexual orientation. By identifying as Ace of Spades, a person clarifies that while they do not experience sexual attraction, they do experience romantic attraction towards individuals who are not of the same gender. This distinction is crucial for understanding the complex nature of romantic and sexual orientation and for recognizing the diverse experiences within the asexual community.


The Ace-Spectrum, short for Asexual-Spectrum, encompasses a wide range of asexual identities and experiences, including individuals who experience no sexual attraction to any gender (asexual), those who experience sexual attraction only under specific conditions (demisexual), or those who experience sexual attraction infrequently (greysexual). This spectrum acknowledges the diversity and fluidity within asexuality, highlighting that experiences of sexual attraction can vary greatly among individuals. The concept of the Ace-Spectrum is critical in understanding and validating the nuances of asexuality, challenging the societal expectation that sexual attraction is universal. It provides a framework for people to identify and express their unique experiences with sexual attraction, or lack thereof, fostering a more inclusive LGBTQIA+ community.

Acesexual / Asexuality

Acesexual, more commonly spelled as "asexual" and abbreviated as "ace," refers to a sexual orientation characterized by a lack of sexual attraction towards others, irrespective of gender. Asexual individuals may not experience sexual desires in the way that others do, but this does not necessarily preclude them from having romantic feelings. Asexuality is a broad spectrum, including various identities such as demisexual (those who only experience sexual attraction after forming a strong emotional connection) and graysexual (those who experience sexual attraction infrequently or under specific conditions). Asexuality highlights the diversity within sexual orientations, emphasizing that sexual attraction is not a compulsory experience for everyone. It is part of the wider LGBTQIA+ community, contributing to the conversation about the complexity of human sexuality and attraction


Achillean refers to a sexual or romantic attraction that occurs between men or masculine-identified individuals. It's a term used to describe attractions that are not exclusively homosexual in nature but include various forms of male/masculine attraction, such as bi, pan, or gay identities, among others. The term originates from Achilles, the Greek hero, symbolizing strength and a warrior's prowess, and is used to positively affirm male-male attraction without necessarily adhering to traditional labels. Achillean is part of a broader effort to provide more nuanced language that respects and acknowledges the complexity of male-male attraction beyond the binary of homosexual and heterosexual orientations.

Activist Lesbian

Activist Lesbian describes a lesbian who is actively involved in advocating for LGBTQIA+ rights, equality, and visibility. This involvement can range from participating in pride marches, lobbying for policy changes, and working with LGBTQIA+ organizations to using platforms like social media to raise awareness about lesbian issues. Activist Lesbians play a crucial role in the fight against discrimination and in promoting a society that respects and acknowledges the diversity of sexual orientations and gender identities. Their activism not only focuses on lesbian rights but often intersects with broader LGBTQIA+ and social justice issues, reflecting the interconnectedness of the struggles faced by various communities within the LGBTQIA+ spectrum.


Adventures of Priscilla, Queen of the Desert, The

"The Adventures of Priscilla, Queen of the Desert" is a landmark film in LGBTQIA+ cinema, released in 1994. It is an Australian road movie that tells the story of two drag queens and a transgender woman who journey across the Australian Outback in a bus named "Priscilla" to perform a drag show in a remote resort. Along the way, they encounter various characters and situations that explore themes of gender identity, friendship, and acceptance against a backdrop of both comedic and poignant moments. The film is celebrated for its vivid costume design, portrayal of LGBTQIA+ subcultures, and its contribution to bringing LGBTQIA+ themes into mainstream cinema.

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Glossary Last Updated: May 14, 2024
Version 1: Publish glossary for the public.
Published April 22, 2024
Version 2: Will be adding filters to view terms by categories.
Version 3: Will be adding images and learn more links for select terms.

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