Hi everyone! Welcome to the A to Z of Sex with me, Dr Lori Beth Bisbey. I am a sex and intimacy coach and psychologist and I’ve spent the last 30 + years helping people to create hot and healthy sexual and intimate relationships. We are working our way through the erotic alphabet one letter at a time. Today the letter is G and G is for Gender and All things Non-Binary
A person’s gender identity is their internal sense of themselves as male, female, or another gender. Cisgender people are those whose gender identity is the same as the sex they were assigned at birth. Transgender people are those whose gender identity is different from their assigned sex at birth.
Gender identity is different from gender role or gender expression. Gender identity refers to how people understand themselves. Gender expression is how they portray themselves. Gender role is the collection of behaviors and activities that society expects to be associated with a particular gender, in this place and time. The notion that men and women are fundamentally different and should behave in very specific ways is sometimes referred to as gender essentialism
Gender is also different from sex and sexual orientation. Sex refers to a person’s biology—chromosomal, hormonal, and anatomical. Sexual orientation refers to a person’s romantic and sexual interest in other people. People of any sex can have any gender identity and sexual orientation. The concepts are independent.
A person is non-binary if their gender identity is something other than male or female. Non-binary individuals may identify as gender fluid, agender (without gender), off the binary, or something else entirely.
Sometimes non-binary people are included in the broad category of transgender people. This represents an evolution as, historically, being transgender was often conceptualized as requiring a movement between binary genders. The notion that transgender people have to be moving towards male or female genders has been both particularly strong and particularly problematic in the medical community.
Joining me today is Dr Meg-John Barker is the author of Rewriting the Rules and a number of other self-help books on love, sex and gender, as well as Queer a Graphic History and many other comic books and zines. They present the Meg-John and Justin podcast with Justin Hancock. They also work as a writing mentor and creative consultant, provide talks and workshops and give interviews and advice for the media. They have written scholarly books, chapters and articles as well as ones geared towards ordinary people.
We spoke about how life in general is truly non-binary and that most of us change over our lifespans even if we are remaining within the same gender category.
Dr Meg-John Barker can be found at https://rewriting-the-rules.com
Social media is all listed there.
Next week H is for History and Censorship.