A comprehensive glossary to transgender and crossdresser terms
We often have folk in the store curious about the wonderful terms and abbreviations that are to do with the TG/CD world. For many of our customers that dress alone many of the terms that are used online in forums etc can be a bit of a mystery whilst some others are pretty obvious. Some folk don’t like the terms since they do not particularly like to wear a label and some terms we hear are not very politically correct. The non-PC terms can be applied both to the TG/CD community and applied to others outside of the TG/CD world.
We are always intrigued by people’s own descriptions of themselves and their own behavior. Whilst many could care less as to whether society or others wish to call them Transgenedered or Crossdresser, for example, we do hear very strong opinions on the subject of people’s sexuality. Whilst there are no official statistics on the subject the majority of customers we talk to in the NJ store that call themselves crossdresser are also heterosexual. Not all by any means but certainly the majority. One of the preconceptions we come across almost daily by those not associated with the TG or CD world is that all CD’s must be gay since they wear dresses!! We find it amazing that folk who know nothing about a particular group are so quick to assign sexuality to them based simply on their mode of dress.
To help de-mystify many of the terms (some of them confusing) being used out there we set out to make an easy to understand glossary. Please feel free to send in your own that we will add to the list and if you have better definitions then by all means email those in to us too. This first part is a list of terms A through M and next month we will do part two. Hopefully, it will be a list that grows and improves over time and can be a source for many including those new to the wonderful world of crossdressing and their partners.
As the song goes: “Lets’s start at the very beginning…..” and though we could have broken up the list into categories we felt easiest for all is just a simple glossary alphabetically listed. Here goes:
- ADMIRER. A person that finds transgenedered people attractive and actively seeks them out. Not 20 minutes from our NJ location there is a gathering of crossdressers every Saturday night in a bar where carefully vetted admirers are permitted to attend and mingle with the girls. Whilst many CD’s love the attention some admirers can be a little too persistent for others.
- ANDROGYNOUS. A person that has both female and male characteristics that can make it hard to tell their assigned gender. Often the subject in media with fashion photoshoots and personalities appearing androgynous like David Bowie.
- BISEXUAL. Refers to a person that is generally sexually attracted to both males and females. Often abbreviated to ‘bi’.
- BREAST FORM. One of the primary pieces of shaping garments used to feminize. Can be as simple as a sock with bird seed to an expensive made-to-measure prosthetic.
- CORSET. Another staple of many crossdressers in trying to achieve an ‘hourglass figure’. Tightly cinches in the waist =and can help create the illusion of having larger feminine hips.
- CROSSDRESSER. The description we like the best is that of a person who likes dress as if they were the opposite sex. Persons who crossdress do this for many reasons, both sexual and non-sexual.
- DRAB. A term used by Crossdressers when they are in their everyday male guise. Of course many crossdressers whilst ‘drab’ on the outside will wear their feminine undergarments, stockings and garterbelts underneath until the next time they can go ‘en femme’ – see below.
- DRAG QUEEN. Usually referred to as a professional stage performer (male) impersonating in an exaggerated manner the opposite sex. There are also ‘Drag Kings’ i.e. females impersonating males though this is a less common practice. Drag Queen often linked to the Gay community since many performers appear in gay clubs and have gay followers.
- EN FEMME. The practice of wearing feminine clothes and accessories and acting out a feminine persona.
- FEMININE. Characteristics or behavior that are derived from females.
- FTM. Stands for Female to Male as opposed to Male to Female (or MTF).
- GAFF. At its most basic a re-enforced and slightly wider (in the crotch area) thong intended to be worn tight to give the impression of a nice flat front in the pubic area. A man’s bits are tucked back (or even up) and the gaff hold’s everything tight and therefore flat.
- GENDER. Generally the characteristics of females and males as bestowed by society as opposed to biologically assigned..
- GG. Often used to describe a genetic girl (non-trans girl). Used widely but sometimes considered a derogatory term and a better term may be ‘Real Girl’.
- GLBT. Abbrevetion term for all Gay, Lesbian, Bi-sexual and Transgender persons.
- HERBAL SUPPLEMENTS. In the TG/CD world this refers to the use of such supplements for feminization e.g. pills or creams for increasing breast size. Whilst some swear by the results since there are no conclusive scientific studies available stated claims are often not proven.
- HIP ENHANCER. Another key shaping garment for many crossdressers is some form of hip enhancement that can be in the form of loose pads, panties with built in pads and even very expensive latex body parts.
- HORMONES. Drugs associated with, for example, feminization treatment. Should always be administered by a medical professional as there can be serious side effects for some.
- INTERSEX PEOPLE. Generally defined as those persons born with a “congenital anomaly of the reproductive and sexual system” (Source: Intersex Initiative) that is to say they have ambigious sexual organs.
- LADYBOY. Often refers to trans women who have had feminization by hormones and/or surgery, specifically breast augmentation but whose male genitals are still intact. Most widely used in places like Thailand. Sometimes ‘She-male’ is the preferred term.
- MTF. Male to female. Other abbreviations include M2F and MF.
So there you have it for the first half of the alphabet – the 2nd half of the list will follow on in a future Newsletter. This is by no means a complete glossary and will grow as we receive suggestions/additions from our readers. To add to the list please email us at [email protected] and thank-you for all contributions.