Understanding the alphabet of LGBTQQIP2SAA

By: Bijou Kruszka

Happy pride month!

You’ve probably heard of the LGBTQ+ community, but have you ever heard of the LGBTQQIP2SAA (I promise I’m not keyboard smashing) community?

Most likely, no.

Because it’s June, I’d like to walk you through this lengthy acronym and shine some light on some queer identities.

L stands for lesbian, which means a woman who finds
other women attractive. There has been a lot of discourse over
the word “lesbian” due to its negative use. Some dislike it, but others are fine with the term.

There have been many variations of the lesbian flag over the years but the most widely accepted one has five stripes, the top two being shades of orange, the bottom two being shades of pink, and a white stripe in the middle.

G stands for gay, which originally meant a man who finds other men attractive, but is now an umbrella term for any same-sex attraction. The word “gay” is often used as an insult, and that needs to be stopped.

The gay flag is the most recognizable of all the queer flags, with its six rainbow stripes.

B stands for bisexual, which means any person who finds both men and women attractive. Some people call being bisexual “spicy straight” which is an offensive term, as it is its own valid identity.

The bisexual flag has three stripes: the top being pink, the bottom being blue, and the middle stripe, which is slightly smaller, is purple.

T stands for transgender, which means any person who identifies with a gender identity outside of their sex assigned at birth. The T used to stand for transsexual, but this is an outdated term.

The transgender flag has five stripes: the top and bottom being a light blue, the two stripes nearest to the middle are light pink, and the middle stripe is white.

The first Q stands for queer, which is an umbrella term for all those who identify as not heterosexual (attracted to the opposite gender) or not cisgender (identifying as the gender you were born with).

While there is no official queer flag, a flag commonly used is a rainbow flag with a brown, black, light pink, light blue, and white triangle on the left side of the flag.

The second Q stands for questioning, which is a term describing all those who aren’t sure of their sexuality or gender identity yet.

There is no official questioning flag.

I stands for intersex, which means any person whose anatomy at birth isn’t exactly female or male.

The intersex flag is yellow, with a purple ring in the center.

P stands for pansexual, and despite what many people joke, it is not the attraction to pans. The word means people who are attracted to everyone, regardless of their gender identity.

The pansexual flag has three stripes, with pink at the top, yellow in the center, and blue at the bottom.

2S stands for two-spirit, which is a term used for indigenous people who don’t fit into the gender binary. The term two-spirit comes from the idea that these people possess both a masculine and feminine spirit.

There is no official two-spirit flag.

The first A stands for asexual, which means any person who doesn’t experience sexual attraction. Another form of this is aromantic, which means they don’t experience romantic attraction. These two are somewhat similar but aren’t correlated.

The asexual flag has four stripes, that are black, gray, white, and purple.

The aromantic flag has five stripes: two shades of green on top, then white, grey, and black.

The second A, and last letter in the acronym, stands for allies, which means anyone who isn’t a part of the queer community but supports those who are. This is controversial and less widely accepted, as people who aren’t LGBTQ+ are considered part of the community, but aren’t minorities like the rest.

The ally flag is black and white stripes (technically the heterosexual flag), with a rainbow triangle.

In the end, even this lengthy acronym doesn’t scratch the surface of all queer identities. However, it’s a good place to start, and these are the most common.

Have a happy pride month!

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