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Most people who are assigned female at birth feel like girls or women, and most people who are assigned male at birth feel like boys or men. These people are cisgender (or cis).

Some people have a gender identity that doesn’t match the sex they were given at birth — for example, they were born with a vulva, vagina, and uterus, but they feel and identify as male. These people are transgender (or trans). Transgender is the “T” in LGBTQ.

Trans can also include people who don’t identify with strict male/female gender roles. Other people who don’t feel either male or female call themselves genderqueer. There are other gender identity terms and labels, but don’t use terms like transgendered, transvestite, tranny, or, he-she — they’re old-fashioned and can be hurtful. It’s always best to respect the words people use to describe themselves.

Learn more about coming out as transgender, finding a trans-friendly doctor, or supporting someone who is trans.