Transgender glossary

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Spectra and binaries


This glossary documents the more common terms of art, neologisms, and memes used by transgender people.



See Sex assignment at birth


AgenderWikipedia is an identity of not having a particular gender.


AndrogynyWikipedia is gender ambiguity.

Baby trans[edit]

A trans person who has recently discovered that they're trans, or a trans minor.


BigenderWikipedia is a gender identity that consists of two genders.


Also see Girlmode.

When a trans person presents as male.

Breast binding[edit]

Abbreviation: Binding
Also see Tucking.

When a person uses a binder to hide their breasts or make them less noticeable.


An abbreviation of the phrases Coercively Assigned Female/Male At Birth, a variation on AFAB/AMAB which conveys the view that gender assignment is arbitrary but still strictly enforced.


A person who seeks to date trans persons solely because they are trans, especially in a fetishistic and dehumanising manner.[1]


A cisgender is a person whose gender identity matches their assigned sex.


"Being clocked" means being read as your assigned sex or as transgender, when trying to pass e.g. "He clocked me as trans, despite me being in girlmode".

Cross-sex hormone therapy[edit]

See Transgender hormone therapy


The offensive act of using the name a trans person's used prior to transitioning, whether in social contexts, official documents, media/online, or explicitly as an attack on a trans person.[2] While it might sometimes happen accidentally among friends/relatives, it is considered harmful and demeaning because it can be a rejection of a person's identity as trans and an attack on their attempt to transition and the reality of their gender identification.[3]


A nonbinary gender identity that identifies as being partially another gender. Demigender people may feel more associated with one gender than any other, but not enough to identify as said gender. Common demigenders include demigirl, demiboy, and demiflux (when a neutral gender is the preferred gender).


DetransitioningWikipedia is the cessation or reversal of a transgender identification or gender transition.

Drag queen/king[edit]

A drag queen is (usually) a man who dresses as a women often in elaborate costume and makeup for performance. It is a theatrical tradition common in gay clubs and other venues, that often includes dancing, lip syncing, live singing, and "reading" (humorously putting down) other performers and audience members.[4] A drag king is a woman dressed as a stereotypical man, often with facial hair, leather or formal suits, and fake penises (packing).[5] Although often done by LGBTQ people, drag artists are not necessarily transgender and many performers are cis or non-binary when offstage.


Anyone that isn't Intersex.


A transgender person before such person recognizes themselves as trans or who is about to recognize themselves as trans.[6]

Facial feminization surgery[edit]

Abbreviation: FFS

Facial feminization surgeryWikipedia is plastic surgery that makes faces more feminine. This procedure aims to emphasize the somatic traits of women including (but not limited to): hairline, brows, nose, jaw.[7]


Short for feminine. Also french word meaning "woman".


For more information, see: Gatekeeping

The lengthy process of obtaining access to HRT medication that might be more or less influenced by the belief of some medical professionals that a person "is not truly trans" because they don't fit some specific sexist stereotypes, or they have a sexual orientation towards the "wrong" gender.

Gender dysphoria[edit]

Gender dysphoriaWikipedia is the state of dysphoria (displeasure, disapproval) one feels from not conforming to their identified gender. It also occurs when a trans person is identified with the wrong pronoun.

Gender euphoria[edit]

The state of euphoria (pleasure, approval) one feels from being affirmed in their gender identity.

Gender fluid[edit]

A gender identity that changes over time e.g. a gender-fluid person may be a boy on Mondays and a girl on Sundays.


A genderqueer person is someone who doesn't fully identify on the gender binary (man or woman), but on a continuum between those two.

Gender Reassignment Surgery[edit]

Abbreviation: GRS
Sometimes also referred as Sex Reassignment Surgery (SRS)

Alternative wording for sex reassignment surgery sex reassignment surgery


Also see Boymode.

When a trans person presents as female.


A term for traditional third gender cultures in the Indian subcontinent, with a long history and increasing legal recognition as a separate gender; some are intersex or eunuchs but others are neither. There are many other names in different languages and cultures including Kinnar or Kinner in India and Khawaja Sira in Pakistan.[8]

Hormone Replacement Therapy[edit]

Abbreviation: HRT
See the main article on this topic: Hormone replacement therapy

See drugs section, below.


See the main article on this topic: Intersex

Intersex refers to any biological ambiguity of an animal or human's sex from "chromosomes, gonads, sex hormones, or genitals".


Contraction of the word "masculine".


The term monosexual refers to sexual orientations that involve sexual attraction towards one gender.


Contraction (abbreviation): enby
See the main article on this topic: Non-binary

See genderqueer.


A non-binary gender identity associated with a neutral gender. Not to be confused with agender.


Packing is the practice of making a bulge in one's groin to emphasize one's masculinity and relieve body dysphoria for transmasculine people. Packers run the gamut from wadded-up socks to realistic silicone likenesses of genitalia.


"Passing" is when a trans person is assumed or perceived to be cis, or their preferred gender. "Passing" is reliant on many different factors and it is not possible for all trans people to always pass at the expense of affirmation surgery and hormones, as well as document changes, and the difficulty of making a clean break from pre-transition life. Because of this, passing is often conditional or temporary.


Trans women are known to enjoy eating pickles, due to the salt cravings caused by spirolactone (more commonly known as "spiro"). Not all trans women eat pickles on spiro, but it is common enough to be a meme.


The term polysexual refers to sexual orientations that involve sexual attraction towards multiple genders.

Prosecco Stormfront[edit]

A nick name for Mumsnet, because of its central role in the promotion of transphobia in the United Kingdom among middle class white cis women.

Sex reassignment surgery[edit]

Abbreviation: SRS
Sometimes also referred as Gender Reassignment Surgery (GRS)
See the main article on this topic: Gender transition

Surgery that involves changing one's primary and secondary sexual characteristicsWikipedia to become the opposite sex.


The shield emoji is used in bios or names on Twitter, Tumblr, and other social media sites to signal opposition to truscum or transmedicalist beliefs, to counter the crossed swords emoji and/or lightning bolt emoji(s), which are used to signal support for truscum or transmedicalist beliefs, as a reference to (and often specifically to signal that one is a fan of) Kalvin Garrah and/or Storm Ryan, respectively.

Sex assignment at birth[edit]

See the main article on this topic: Sex assignment at birth

Sex assignment at birth refers to the sex that an observer declares the baby to be shortly after birth. The doctor (or midwife, or whoever else is present) examines the infant and declares "It's a boy!" if a penis is present or "It's a girl!" if a vulva is present. In the case of certain intersex conditions, one may not be able to make that call, as the genitalia of the infant may be ambiguous.

A breakdown of the terms and abbreviations involved:

  • AFAB
  • AMAB

The terms "AMAB" or "AFAB" are generally preferred over the terms "female-bodied/male bodied" or "anatomically male/anatomically female", or "biologically male/biologically female", as these terms automatically assign a gender to certain body parts, and do not take into account the possibility that the individual in question may have undergone surgery to change their genitals. "Genetic male" or "genetic female" are also incorrect terms, as certain intersex conditions can be caused by having a XY karyotypeWikipedia (combination of chromosomes) but be born with a vulva/uterus, or have XX karyotype and be born with a penis/testicles. For further information on some intersex conditions: XY gonadal dysgenesis (Swyer syndrome)Wikipedia, XX male syndrome (De la Chapelle syndrome)Wikipedia, XXY male (Klinefelter syndrome).Wikipedia


A spirogirl is a trans woman who takes spironolactone.


"Going stealth" means living like ones preferred gender completely with nobody (or almost nobody) knowing that they're trans. In effect, nobody knows or sees them as anything but a cisgender person. This often may include breaking contact with most or all of their pre-transition relatives and friends. Going stealth is not possible for all trans people since it requires being able to pass completely.

TERF Island[edit]

A nickname for the United Kingdom, due to its overwhelming and widespread transphobia.[9]


A catch-all word for people with a gender identity "more feminine" than that assigned at birth. This is inclusive of trans women and AMAB non-binary people, as well as intersex people assigned as such at birth who undergo transition. It covers far more than the term "MtF", and is independent of transition status. One can also talk of a "transfeminine transition" which can refer to any steps a transfeminine person may take in transitioning. The word is more of a direction than a state, hence why it can include such a large number of groups.


A longer word for truscum: those who seek to divide trans people into "real" and "fake/wannabe".


An umbrella term for people whose gender identity isn't the one typical of their sex assigned at birth.

Transgender hormone therapy[edit]

Transgender hormone therapyWikipedia is hormone replacement therapy meant to bring a trans person's secondary sexual characteristics closer to their true gender.


TransitioningWikipedia is process where a trans person changes their gender presentation over time. It may or may not involve doing HRT.


A catch-all word for people with a gender identity "more masculine" than that assigned at birth. This is inclusive of trans men and AFAB non-binary people, as well as intersex people assigned as such at birth who undergo transition. It covers far more than the term "FtM", and is independent of transition status. One can also talk of a "transmasculine transition", which can refer to any steps a transmasculine person may take in transitioning. This word is directional in a similar manner as the word transfeminine.


See the main article on this topic: Transmedicalism

Those who believe trans people must seek medical intervention and/or that only people medically diagnosed with gender dysphoria are "really" trans.

Transmisogyny-affected (TMA)[edit]

A term for transfeminine people, that highlights how many aspects of transphobia (including anti-nonbinary sentiment) uniquely affect trans people who were assigned male at birth (as opposed to cis people and transmasculine/non-binary AFAB people).

Transmisogyny-exempt (TME)[edit]

A term for people not affected by transmisogyny: cis women, cis and trans men, AFAB enbies.


An outdated term for binary transgender people who specifically undergo HRT and SRS. The term is being abandoned in favor of the more inclusive transgender, but it's still used among truscums, anti-trans activists, and people in countries where the term still has widespread use.

Trans bashing[edit]

Trans bashingWikipedia is verbally, physically or sexually abusing a trans person.

Trans man / FtM[edit]

A trans manWikipedia is a person who identifies as male and was AFAB. The term “FtM” has fallen out of favor in the trans community in recent years.[citation needed]

Trans panic defense[edit]

See the main articles on this topic: Blaming the victim and Gay panic

Gay and trans "panic" defenseWikipedia tactics ask a jury to find that a victim's sexual orientation or gender identity is to blame for the defendant's excessively violent reaction.[10]

Trans woman / MtF[edit]

A trans womanWikipedia is a person who identifies as female and was AMAB. The term “MtF” has fallen out of favor in the trans community in recent years.[11]


TrigenderWikipedia refers to a person who identifies as male, female, and non-binary.


A term (pronounced "true scum") used to describe transgender people who believe you need gender dysphoria to be transgender, at a base level, whether diagnosed by a doctor or not. People who fit with the Truscum ideology are often transphobic to those deemed "less trans" such as non-binary people, to transgender people who don't desire to undergo sex reassignment surgery, or those who state they don't experience gender dysphoria. The term is derogatory in nature, but has been used as a self-description to those who are less open, or flat out opposed, to the highly inclusive nature of the transgender community. While the term has been used interchangeably with transfundamentalists or transmedicalists, those terms typically refer to those who have a desire to have some form of gatekeeping with achieving a medical diagnosis of gender dysphoria for obtaining Hormone Replacement Therapy and/or having surgeries (transmedicalist). Truscum people who are judging others based on their definition of what a "true" transgender person is, hence the term truscum (transfundamentalist). The more extreme of truscum views can be seen by many as in alignment with TERFs ideology, however, not all truscum people share this way of thinking.


Also see Breast binding.

The act of hiding one's penis between their legs to appear to have a vagina. The act may result in negative health consequences, so it should be used with caution.[12]


Two-spiritWikipedia is a term used by some Indigenous North American peoples to describe gender-variant people in their communities.


An ironic term used to criticize how the expression "(Women and) non-binary people" is often used (both in women's and in queer spaces) with the implicit expectation that "non-binary" means "women-lite", in the sense of a slightly androgynous AFAB enby person not on hormones. These implicit expectations harm people from both directions of the gender transition: transfeminine people (because they might fear transmisogyny from a women's space), and transmasculine people (because it can be seen as "women and people that we still see as women").


Chemical structure of estradiol (E2).
Chemical structure of spironolactone (Spiro).
Chemical structure of testosterone (T).


Cyproterone acetate[edit]

Abbreviation: Cypro

Cyproterone acetateWikipedia is an anti-androgen used in hormone therapy (as well as to treat other conditions such as prostate problems and acne). Because of fears of liver injury it is not used in the US, where spironolactone is instead used; however studies linking cypro with liver problems have been criticised and the link questioned.[13]


Abbreviation: E2

EstradiolWikipedia (also spelt oestradiol) is a primarily female hormone that gives secondary sex characteristics.Wikipedia It's one of the most commonly used and known estrogens.[14]


Also known as: Titty skittles or Feminems

EstrogensWikipedia are a family of steroidal compounds that produce female secondary sex characteristics.Wikipedia


ProgesteroneWikipedia is a primarily female hormone that enhances breast growth and can lead to improved mood and counteract the decrease in libido from anti-androgenic medications.


Abbreviation: Spiro

SpironolactoneWikipedia is a steroid that has medical uses, although it's not normally given to men because of its feminizing side effects.[15] It's the main effect if you're a trans woman because it suppresses testosterone.[16][17][18] It's known to cause salt cravings. It an anti-androgen used in the US as an alternative to cyproterone acetate.



Abbreviation: T

TestosteroneWikipedia is a primarily male hormone that gives secondary sex characteristics.Wikipedia


Want to lose all of your trans friends? Refer to them as these terms.

Chicks with dicks[edit]

A slur used to describe trans women without SRS. It is a common term in the pornography industry.


See the main article on this topic: Cross-dresser

Someone who likes to dress up as the opposite sex. Both terms are mostly used to imply that trans people are perverts. However, some cisgendered individuals do cross-dress without any malice and it is fine to refer to them specifically as cross-dressers.


A slur used to insult trans men.


A slur used to insult trans women.


A slur used to insult trans people.


A slur used for a transwoman who doesn't pass. Notable in that self-hating transwomen who (sometimes mistakenly) believe they do not pass use this term liberally, especially towards themselves. The term comes from "honey", which was a feel-good "everyone can be beautiful" message espoused on certain forums, used earnestly; now it is used as a slur or term of mockery.


Referring to people with "it/its/itself" pronouns is offensive in general, since these pronouns are used to refer to inanimate objects (or non-human animals), but these are more often used to mock trans people. Some non-binary people use these pronouns, however, it is very rare.

LGBTQIA[Insert alphabet here][edit]

Generally used to mock the diversity within the LGBT community which allowed more identities to be included inside the label.

It is the most often used by TERFs and Truscum who believe that the LGBT is nothing more than a joke nowadays. Occasionally, Transphobes from the alt-right may use the slur to mock the LGBT in general.


A slur used to insult trans women. It is a common term in the pornography industry.


A sissy is someone who practices sissification, a kink for dressing ultra-feminine and/or "slutty" clothes and then being sexually humiliated. Practitioners are always AMAB and are generally cisgender, although some are trans men. The term is sometimes used as a slur against trans women (and also, gay men).


While neither term is necessarily derogatory in nature, these terms are used mostly in pornography, and thus referring to trans people with these terms will come across as fetishizing.


Like the previous term, it isn't necessarily derogatory. However, most trans people prefer synynoms such as "being transgender", as the terms "transgenderism" and "transgenderist" are primarily used by transphobic people (often to imply that being transgender is an ideology instead of a state of being).


A derogatory term for a transgender person. Usually used to attack trans women. In the past, this term has been used within the transgender community, e.g., the "Tranny Fest" film festival, which has since been renamed the "San Francisco Transgender Film Festival".[19]


A derogatory term frequently used by followers of truscum ideology, suggesting that a person is only pretending to be trans to attract attention and that their identity is not valid. Frequently levied against nonbinary people but also against binary trans people who don't fully conform or pass to what is expected of their gender identity.


Trap is a slur, unfortunately very popular within anime fandoms. Originally, "trap" referred to a cis boy in anime who dresses as a woman (not to be confused with futanari, which refers to a female-bodied person with a penis), but eventually became used as a slur that almost always refers to non-op or pre-op trans women, and was originally based on the idea that trans women are just men disguised as women to have sex with men, and that dating (or merely being attracted to) a trans woman somehow makes one gay, because being gay is somehow bad. Keep in mind that because of this way of thinking, many people will refuse to enter relationships with trans people or will even murder them. The term is sometimes used non-maliciously by trans women or by feminine cross-dressers.


A portmanteau of "trans" and "loon"/"goon" used to insult primarily trans women.

TERF terms[edit]

The genderqueer flag (left) and the terfragette flag (right). TERFs have started appropriating the former in order to confuse and muddy the waters, in a similar way to what they've done with non-binary vs "genderfree"

A list of dog-whistles and other terms used by TERFs (and/or general transphobes).

Actual woman[edit]

Self-description by TERFs, because they think they get to decide who's an actual woman and who isn't.[20]

Adult human female[edit]

Either presented as a dictionary definition of "woman" or as a self-identification or self-description, this is used by transphobes in the apparent belief that it excludes trans women who are (in their minds) not real women, while also suggesting that trans people are not mature adults or somehow subhuman.[21] Anyone who claims to be an "adult human female" is probably a TERF.

AFAB trans woman[edit]

Not to be confused with AFAB or trans woman.

An incoherent set of labels that is used to misgender trans men as women and trans women as men.

Agender as in atheist[edit]

A dog-whistle sometimes used by TERFs. Not to be confused with non-binary or non-malicious uses of agender.

🏁 (chequered flag emoji)[edit]

The chequered/racing flag emoji is a dogwhistle often used by TERFs in their bios or names on Twitter, Tumblr, and other social media sites. It supposedly represents the idea that there are only two sexes, like a racing flag features only black and white checks. Emerged around the same time as "genderfree".


Clownfish are sequential hermaphrodites.Wikipedia This means that male-to-female sex changes are a natural part of their reproductive biology. Clownfish schools are lead by a female. When this female dies, the dominant male changes sex and takes her place, becoming a fertile (i.e. egg-producing) female. TERF references to clownfish are intended to mock and otherize trans women, suggesting that the idea humans can change sex is absurd because humans are not fish. (This, of course, conflates gender with sex, something TERFs do a lot.) It's also a reference to the TERF myth that trans women are out to "erase women."


A movement where its proponents argue dropping the 'T' from LGBTQ. This movement is not exclusively adopted by TERFs since there are members of the LGB(TQ)+ community who hate Trans people and have made an entire movement called the LGB Alliance to reach that end result.


Since the evil gays and bisexuals didn't want to throw trans people out, some lesbians have proposed going their own way separating themselves from the GBTQ community.[22] Increasingly echoed unironically by trans people and other members of said community in response to the hostility and protectionism sometimes found among (cis) lesbians.


See the main article on this topic: DropTheB

A (failed) attempt of the alt-right to promote intra-LGBT hatred by claiming that being bisexual is inherently transphobic.[23]


Stands for "female-exclusive bisexual female." Or, in other words, a bisexual woman who only dates women. Plenty of bi women who fit this description are not TERFs. However, the term is used almost exclusively in TERF spaces. The double use of "female" is an attempt to de-legitimize the womanhood of trans women. The implication is that a cis woman dating a trans woman is not in a female-female relationship.

Gender abolitionist[edit]

Not to be confused with non-binary.

Often used as a dog whistle for TERFs. The reasoning is that gender is "just" a set of stereotypes, and that it shouldn't matter. Only sex assigned at birth should matter. Therefore it's fine to discriminate and stereotype based on the latter. Note that the expression is however sometimes used by well-meaning individuals as well. The term originally referred to a type of feminism that opposes "gender" in the sense of gender roles and having gender determine everything about an individual's selfhood, and believe a society moving beyond that would be better for everyone including trans people (some of whom support the actual philosophy). Ironically, TERFs tend to believe in gender essentialism, and strictly tying someone's identity to their birth sex, no matter what they claim on paper.

Gender-critical feminism[edit]

A euphemistic slang term invented by TERFs to refer to their hateful mindset. In fact, many TERFs falsely claim the term "TERF" is a misogynistic slur. This is not new or unique behavior, many white supremacists will insist that "anti-racist is a code word for anti-white" and insist on being called "race realist."

Gender ideology[edit]

For more information, see: Gender ideology


A new euphemism(April 2019) that TERFs have started using to describe themselves, implying that gender is a set of stereotypes, should not matter, and the only thing that matters is sex assigned at birth.


A reactionary term, which gained traction in mid-late 2020, that mocks the concept of gender as well as transgender people (who support gender)- but not trans-exclusionary pseudoscience and denial of scientific evidence that directly contradicts the classic transphobic narrative that, in the reactionaries' view, "transgenders just want to escape biological [sic] reality" (like brain similarities between trans women and cis women for example). Because apparently, promoting anti-scientific attitudes and conspiracy theories is only bad if trans people and their allies are (allegedly) doing it.

Goody [name][edit]

"Goody" was the short form of "Goodwife," an archaic honorific used to address women in England, Scotland, and Colonial America up until the 18th century. It was roughly equivalent to the modern "Ms." or "Mrs." TERFs often use it before their surnames or account names (e.g., "Goody Rowling[24]") as a reference to Goody Ann GloverWikipedia, who, in 1688, was hanged as a witch in Boston, the last person to suffer such a fate in the city. The insinuation is that TERFs are also innocent women being persecuted by trans women in exceedingly vague and unverifiable ways.


A cisgender woman who supports transgender rights. Also used by SWERFs to describe women who support sex workers. Taken from the Margaret Atwood novel The Handmaid's Tale, in which handmaids are fertile women forced to bear children for powerful men in the Republic of Gilead, a patriarchal, totalitarian Christian theocracy.

Ironically enough, Margaret Atwood likely qualifies as a "handmaid" in the eyes of TERFs, given that she acknowledges trans women are women, and believes they should be allowed in women's restrooms.[25][26] She might also be labelled a "handmaid" by SWERFs for the apparent disdain for anti-porn feminists shown in the The Handmaid's Tale. In the novel, feminists campaign against porn because they view it as a threat to women, unwittingly helping lay the groundwork for a cultural shift that allows religious extremists to overthrow the U. S. government and turn the country into a brutal theocracy.

It is also worth noting that the type of biological essentialism advocated by TERFs has historically lead to policies that oppress women (notably abortion and contraception bans) rather than the ostensibly feminist utopias they're seeking.


A dogwhistle used in social media bios to signal that the user is a cis woman with TERF views, usually in coded phrases like "hygienic female," "very hygienic," etc. The implication is that cis women are cleaner than trans women, playing on the stereotype that men have worse personal hygiene than women. TERFs of course view trans women as men. It also references TERF scaremongering about adverse bottom surgery outcomes.

I Love J. K. Rowling[edit]

"I Love J. K. Rowling" was once a sentiment shared by millions of Harry Potter fans. However, Rowling dropped the mask and revealed herself to be a TERF in late 2019, confirming years of speculation based on dodgy Twitter likes and follows. The phrase has since become a coded way for transphobes to propagate their views while seemingly expressing simple fondness of a popular author. Billboards and signs featuring the phrase have been commissioned.[27][28] A cottage industry of stickers, shirts, and other junk featuring the phrase has sprung up. Now TERFS are more likely to enthusiastically proclaim their love of J. K. Rowling than Harry Potter fans.


A misspelling of queer used by TERFs and exclusionists to mock queer and non-binary people. A censored "q*eer" is also sometimes a signal that you're dealing with TERFs and exclusionists.

Lesbian erasure[edit]

A conspiracy theory invented by TERFs. It smears the trans-rights movement as a nefarious plot to systemically "erase" lesbians. Its proponents insist that granting legal recognition and protection to trans people will somehow force cis lesbians to date "men" (i.e., trans women) and thus nullify the existence of lesbians, or because lesbians are somehow being convinced to become trans men. This conspiracy has been propagated by mainstream newspapers in the UK.[29]


While discrimination and fear of lesbians do exist, this is more often used by TERFs as a dog-whistle against male-to-female transgender people, and it is also often used to gatekeep trans women from women's spaces. As with other terms here, it has, of course, made it harder for non-transphobic lesbians to talk about legitimate discrimination against lesbians, and to describe how it differs from homophobia against gay men.

Male-Exclusionary Radical Feminist / MERF[edit]

A TERF way to describe themselves as radical feminists. This also goes under the TERF mindset that "trans women are men."

Male violence[edit]

A transphobic dogwhistle that is used to include trans women as part of crimes that male criminals committed. Oddly, this excludes trans men, if they even remember that they exist.

MtT/FtT (Male to Transsexual, Female to Transsexual)[edit]

Terms used to deny that there's any real change at all, refusing to call trans women women and trans men men. These terms later evolved into TIM and TIF.

Peak trans[edit]

The equivalent of the red pill for TERFs and other transphobes. It is the moment that TERFs claim they "woke up" to the purported menace of trans-rights activism and adopted their anti-trans views.[30] An attempt was made by trans people to repurpose/steal the hashtag, but it did not gain significant traction in the long term.

Rapid onset gender dysphoria (ROGD)[edit]

See the main article on this topic: Littman 2018 ROGD Study

Rapid onset gender dysphoria is, essentially, the idea that Tumblr, Reddit and similar sites are turning teens (especially girls) trans, teens that had not previously displayed any signs of being transgender. Naturally, this became a favourite among TERFs and other transphobes, who saw it as "proof" that the Trans Agenda™ is turning kids trans. All academic evidence for the existence of ROGD is one hilariously bad study which, among other things, didn't include the kids it was studying.

🟥 (red square emoji)[edit]

Another dogwhistle used by TERFs in their bios and names on Twitter. It indicates that the user opposes letting trans women use women's washrooms and shelters, co-opting the "no means no" slogan used for decades by anti-rape campaigners.[31]


In the United Kingdom and Ireland, "safeguardingWikipedia" refers to measures designed to protect children, youth, and vulnerable adults from abuse and neglect. TERFs in the UK have co-opted the term as a euphemism for their crusade against young people's access to transition care. In December 2020, they succeeded in effectively banning transition care for people under 16 in the country, and immediately switched to calling for limiting adults' access.[32][33]


Slur used against trans women and that stands for "Surgically and Chemically Altered Male".

Sex-based rights[edit]

TERFs and other transphobes often insist that they are fighting for women's "sex-based rights" as a framing tactic. And yet, when pressed, they struggle to name any rights actually granted on the basis of sex. For example, the legal right to access to contraception and abortion isn't founded on the idea that having a uterus should confer certain rights, but on the idea that people who can get pregnant (most of whom are women) should have the same right to privacy and bodily autonomy as those who cannot. TERFs wouldn't want to live in the kind of society most likely to emerge from the philosophy that sex should determine rights and opportunities.

It is also worth noting that there are no documented references to "sex-based rights" on Twitter before 2015 despite TERFs' insistence they are a foundational feminist concept.[34]


A hashtag that is an exclusionary dogwhistle that they reject gender science in favor of sex.

🕸️ (spiderweb emoji)[edit]

Another dogwhistle used by TERFs in their bios or names on Twitter, Tumblr, and other social media sites. It specifically indicates that the user is a member of, a "women-first social network" better understood as the TERF version of Gab.

The spider emoji (🕷️) is not a TERF dogwhistle. It is used as a tribute to UK judge Brenda Hale, who once famously wore a very large spider brooch. However, since transphobia is extremely pervasive in the UK, there is significant overlap between those who use the two emojis.


In TERF circles combinations including the word "super" such as "super straight", "super woman", "super lesbian" and "super feminist", with the standalone word "super" as shorthand, all refer to the Super Straight meme that was popularised by neo-Nazi agitators on 4chan to invalidate and mock trans people's gender identities and justify blatant transphobia.[35] In light of both its origin and use among transphobic people it is an extremely transphobic term.

The Staniland Question[edit]

A loaded question posed by Helen Staniland in early 2021 shortly before her Twitter suspension: "Do you believe that male-bodied people with a penis should have the right to undress in front of women and young girls?"[36]

No one in the trans-rights movement has actually advocated exposing kids to naked adults. But TERFs have started routinely demanding that they answer the "Staniland Question." The question is a blatant example of the age-old demonization of LGBT people as dangerous predators. It also assumes that trans-rights supporters might not object to communal changing spaces for different reasons (e.g. privacy and body shaming).


An attempt to reclaim the term TERF while pretending they're equivalent to the suffragettes who campaigned for votes for women. Used as self-identification by TERFs.[20]


A new hashtag that spawned sometime in 2019 as a way for TERFs to fight back after being called out for being transphobic.

TIM/TIF (Trans Identified Male/Female)[edit]

Terms used to misgender trans women (TIM) and men (TIF), while at the same time also denying that they are trans (which is not a real thing, according to TERFs), through the now turned-into-dogwhistle "identify as" expression. They are also used because they don't contain the letters of the elective gender (unlike mtF, ftM), and because they are typically masculine (Tim/Timothy) or feminine (Tiffany) names.

Trans agenda (or Queer agenda)[edit]

According to TERFs and alt-righters, trans people have an agenda to:

  • Confuse, trick, and make cis people uncomfortable
  • Invade cis people's bathrooms
  • Feminize men
  • Erase the meaning of "woman" by letting trans women use the term "woman"
  • Turn cis lesbians into straight women and then replace lesbians with "fake" trans lesbians
  • Destroy lesbianism by pushing young AFAB individuals into calling themselves "non-binary", "trans men", "queer", "pansexual" instead of the classical "lesbian"
  • Cause a genocide of homosexual people, by pressuring them to transition, like in Iran

Meanwhile, trans people's real agenda is to lower the suicide rate for trans people, and reduce gatekeeping.

Trans lobby[edit]

TERFs often refer to the "trans lobby", a conspiracy theory with far-right origins that is closely related to the "gay lobby" conspiracy theory. In practice the "trans lobby" refers to everyone who espouses progressive and LGBT-tolerant views; for instance Norwegian TERFs consider Norway's conservative health minister Bent Høie, who has no personal involvement with trans issues, to be part of the "trans lobby" due to his reasonably progressive policies as health minister.

Trans rights are men's rights[edit]

This term is used to smear transgender women and activists as men's rights activists. It is a play on the term "trans rights are human rights."

Trans-rights activist (TRA)[edit]

A person who supports the transgender rights movement. TERFs pretty much use this term indiscriminately. In TERF logic, one is a "TRA" whether they occasionally express support for trans rights or whether they've devoted their life and/or social media presence to the cause. The acronym was deliberately chosen to sound like "MRA" in an attempt to draw a false equivalence between trans-rights activism and the genuinely misogynistic and anti-feminist men's rights movement.


Alternative spellings of "woman"/"women" used to avoid ending the word with "-man". Historically, these terms have been used in wider feminist discourse. However, they are now primarily used by TERFs. To avoid this association, the term womxn was created.


Represents the female chromosomes. TERFs will put the female chromosomes (XX) in their social media profiles to denote that they exclude trans and nonbinary people who identify as female or femme.

See also[edit]


  2. Laverne Cox lambastes ‘deadnaming.’ What is it and why is it a problem? by Allyson Chiu (August 14, 2018) The Washington Post.
  3. What Is Deadnaming?, Healthline
  4. See the Wikipedia article on Drag queen.
  5. The beard, the breasts and the bulge, Salon, 23 Jun 2003
  7. [1] (September 09/17/2018) Deschamps-Braly.
  8. See the Wikipedia article on Hijra (South Asia).
  9. "How British Feminism Became Anti-Trans", New York Times
  11. [2]
  13. Oestrogen and anti-androgen therapy for transgender women, Vin Tangpricha and Martin den Heijer, Lancet Diabetes Endocrinol. 2017 Apr; 5(4): 291–300. Published online 2016 Dec 2. doi: 10.1016/S2213-8587(16)30319-9
  14. See the Wikipedia article on Estradiol (medication).
  15. Rathnayake D, Sinclair R (2010). "Use of spironolactone in dermatology". Skinmed 8 (6): 328–32; quiz 333. PMID 21413648. 
  16. The World Professional Association for Transgender Health (WPATH) (2011). "Standards of Care for the Health of Transsexual, Transgender, and Gender Nonconforming People" (PDF). Archived from the original on 2012-05-23. Retrieved 2012-05-27. 
  17. "Endocrine treatment of transsexual persons: an Endocrine Society clinical practice guideline". The Journal of Clinical Endocrinology and Metabolism 94 (9): 3132–54. September 2009. PMID 19509099. 
  18. "Spironolactone with physiological female steroids for presurgical therapy of male-to-female transsexualism". Archives of Sexual Behavior 18 (1): 49–57. February 1989. PMID 2540730. 
  19. See the Wikipedia article on San Francisco Transgender Film Festival.
  20. 20.0 20.1 TERF Warning Signs to Look Out For, Michea B,, Aug 10, 2018
  21. Woman billboard removed after transphobia row, BBC, 26 September 2018
  22. #DropTheL petition
  23. #DropTheB on KnowYourMeme
  25. "Margaret Atwood: ‘When did it become the norm to expect a porn star on the first date?’", Irish Times
  26. "Margaret Atwood: 'I am not a prophet. Science fiction is really about now'", The Guardian
  27. "I love JK Rowling’ poster taken down at Edinburgh railway station due to ‘political nature’", The Independent
  28. "I Love J.K. Rowling sign makes brief, controversial appearance in Vancouver", CBC News
  29. "Lesbians facing 'extinction' as transgenderism becomes pervasive, campaigners warn", The Telegraph
  35. Reddit finally clamps down on transphobic ‘super straight’ trend after neo-Nazi links emerge
  36. Rebecca Gellman, "Answering The Staniland Question",

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