Trans 101: Sexual Orientation

Sexual orientation describes a long term, persistent romantic and sexual attraction to another gender. Orientation is not the same as gender but it is one aspect of gender.

Traditional, Relative Orientations

Traditional sexual orientations refer to both the gender of the object and the gender of the subject. This is done so that women attracted to men and men attracted to women are in the same ingroup, heterosexuality, rather than different groups.
  • Heterosexual
  • Homosexual

Absolute Orientations

Absolute orientations are spoken purely in relation to what gender a person is attracted to, regardless of what their own gender is. The advantage of this language is that when the subject's gender is unknown, disputed, or changing, we can still talk about their orientation.
  • Gynephile - Attracted to women.
  • Androphile - Attracted to men.
  • Bisexual - Attracted to women and men.
  • Asexual - Not sexually attracted to any gender. May be romantically attracted to any gender.
  • Pansexual - Attracted to many or all genders. Or, attracted to people regardless of their gender.
  • Monosexual - Attracted to only one gender.