List of nonbinary identities
This alphabetical list of some of the more common nonbinary identities lists many gender identities that are nonbinary. That is, those other than just female and male identities, which are the binary genders. This list gives names for nonbinary identities in English-speaking cultures, as well as those that are part of other cultures. (For the latter, please never use a word for your gender that belongs only to a culture or ethnic group that is not yours.) Some of these words for nonbinary identities have been used in writing for thousands of years. Meanwhile, some of these words were created more recently. This page lists fewer of the older gender-variant identities than the new ones, because it can be harder to say whether it's accurate to put those in the category of "nonbinary." See also List of uncommon nonbinary identities.
- agender. People have been calling themselves agender since at least before 2013. Some who call themselves agender have no gender identity (genderless). Others who call themselves agender have a gender identity, which isn't female or male, but neutral. In the 2016 Nonbinary/Genderqueer Survey, 944 of the 3,055 respondents (31%) were agender. In the 2019 Worldwide Gender Census, 2,723 of the 11,242 respondents (24.22%) were agender. Notable agender people include rapper Angel Haze,  astrophysicist Amita Kuttner, model Juno Mitchell, and poet Bogi Takács.
- androgyne. This ancient word from Latin means man-woman, and it entered English in the 12th century. For over a century, it has been used for a wide variety of kinds of gender nonconformance, gender identities, and gender expressions that do not fit into the gender binary. It has been used as an umbrella term for them. Androgyne can mean intersex, but not all androgynes are intersex. Victorian and Edwardian era people who called themselves androgynes believed their gender-nonconforming natures originated in hidden intersex characteristics in their brain or body. This was the view of a notable androgyne, autobiographer Jennie June (b. 1874). In the 2016 Nonbinary/Genderqueer Survey, 380 of the respondents (12%) called themselves androgynes. In the 2019 Worldwide Gender Census, 1054 of the respondents (9.3%) called themselves androgynes.
- bigender, or bi-gender. A bigender person feels they have two gender identities, at the same time, or at different times. A bigender person may move between their gender expressions based on their situation or their feelings. These two genders might be female and male, or they might be a different pair of genders. This identity (in the form "bigendered") was in use as early as 1995. In 1997, it was described in International Journal of Transgenderism. The American Psychological Association (APA) recognizes bigender as one type of transgender person. A 1999 survey conducted by the San Francisco Department of Public Health observed that, among the transgender community, less than 3% of those who were assigned male at birth and less than 8% of those who were assigned female at birth identified as bigender. In the 2016 Nonbinary/Genderqueer Survey, 123 of the respondents (4%) were bigender. In the 2019 Worldwide Gender Census, 419 of the respondents (3.72%) were bigender. Notable bigender people include the top-charting musician B-Complex, the speculative fiction writer R.B. Lemberg, and the young adult novelist Mia Siegert.
- bissu. For the past six centuries, the Bugis people of Indonesia have divided their society into five genders, which must coexist harmoniously: oroané (cisgender men), makkunrai (cisgender women), calabai (transgender women), calalai (transgender men), and bissu (all aspects of gender combined to form a whole). Someone is born with the propensity to become bissu if they are intersex, but ambiguous genitalia alone do not confer the state of being a bissu, and ambiguous genitalia need not be visible. A normative male who becomes a bissu is believed to be female on the inside. In order to become bissu, one must learn priestly skills, remain celibate, and wear conservative clothes. Until the 1940s, the bissu were central to keeping ancient palace rituals alive, including coronations of kings and queens. Changes in the Bugis government sidelined the bissu. Persecution from hardline Islamic groups, police, and politicians resulted in fewer people taking on the role. By 2019, the bissu still exist, though their numbers have declined. Bissu today participate in weddings as maids of honour, and work as farmers, as well as performing their cultural roles as priests.
- boi. A queer masculine identity which is not cis-heteronormative. Boi originated in African American culture during the 1990s. It covers a wide variety of alternative masculine identities in emo, BDSM, gay male, lesbian, and genderqueer communities. For some, but not all, boi is an identity outside the gender binary. Not all who use it are people of color. Definitions of "boi" vary widely. In the 2016 Nonbinary/Genderqueer Survey, 3 of the respondents said their gender was boi. In the 2019 Worldwide Gender Census, 76 of the respondents (0.68%) said their gender was boi, or used boi as part of a word for their gender identity, such as femme boy, femboi, tomboi, or demiboy.
- butch. Butch is a queer masculine identity. It originated in working-class lesbian bar culture in the 1940s and 50s. Leslie Feinberg, who was a butch of the 1950s onward and a trans person, defines butch as a category of gender identity, neither male nor female. From the mid-20th century, there has been a tradition of roles of queer butch-femme couples. Butch-femme couples are not a rule, especially not after cultural changes in lesbian culture in the 1970s. Butch-femme couples are not an imitation of heterosexuality. Masculinity or butchness is neither the same as nor an imitation of manhood. As one trans man interviewed by sociologist Henry Rubin put it, the butch lesbian women he knew "were much more butch than me. But I was much more male than they were." Though butch most often means a lesbian woman, not all are. Queer theorist and butch Jack Halberstam defines its indefinability: "The butch is neither cis-gender nor simply transgender [...] Butch is always a misnomer-- not male, not female, masculine but not male, female but not feminine". Butch is a diverse category. Some people choose to call themselves butch. In the 2016 Nonbinary/Genderqueer Survey, 6 of the respondents said they were butch. In the 2019 Worldwide Gender Census, 105 of the respondents (0.93%) called their identity butch, or some form of it, such as soft butch. Notable people who call themselves butch as an identity outside the gender binary include writer Ivan E. Coyote, comedian Kelli Dunham, and social worker Sonalee Rashatwar.
- demiboy. A gender identity that is both male and genderless. In the 2019 Worldwide Gender Census, 834 of the respondents (7.42%) said they were a demiboy, demiguy, demiman, or other form of this identity.
- demigender. An umbrella term for nonbinary identities that have a partial connection to a certain gender. In the 2016 Nonbinary/Genderqueer Survey, 459 of the respondents (15%) said they were demigender, or a form of demigender, such as demiagender, demifluid, demifemme, demimasculine, or demigal. In the 2019 Worldwide Gender Census, 2,331 of the respondents (20.73%) were demigender, demiboy, demigirl, deminonbinary, or other form of this identity.
- demigirl. A gender identity that is both female and genderless. In the 2019 Worldwide Gender Census, 7.98% (897) of the respondents said they were a demigirl, demiwoman, demifemale, or other form of this identity.
- fa'afafine. In Samoa, the Fa'afafine are people who were assigned male at birth (AMAB), have a feminine gender expression, and don't think of themselves as female or male. It has been estimated that 1–5% of Samoans identify as fa'afafine. Te Ara: The Encyclopedia of New Zealand estimates that there are 500 fa’afafine in Samoa, and the same number in the Samoan diaspora in New Zealand, while according to SBS news, there are up to 3,000 fa'afafine currently living in Samoa. The masculine and assigned female at birth (AFAB) counterpart of fa'afafine in Samoa are known variously as faʻatane, faʻatama, and fafatama.
- femme. From the French word for "woman," femme originated as a queer feminine identity in 1950s working-class lesbian bar culture. Traditionally, femme was the counterpart of the butch role. Today, queer people who choose to call themselves femme do not necessarily seek a butch-femme relationship. Femme does not simply mean a conventionally feminine woman, and is instead a culturally transgressive queer identity. Surveys show that a significant percentage of nonbinary and genderqueer people identify as femme. Or, to put it another way, that many femmes consider themselves nonbinary or genderqueer. In the 2016 Nonbinary/Genderqueer Survey, 20 of the respondents (0.65%) called themselves a femme, a nonbinary femme, or othe variations. In the 2019 Worldwide Gender Census, 1.35% of the respondents identified as some form of femme. Some notable people who identify as femme outside the binary include author Kate Bornstein, journalist Sassafras Lowrey, disability rights activist Sharon daVanport, and multimedia artist Dev Blair.
- genderfluid, gender fluid, or fluid gender. A gender identity that often changes, so that a person may feel one day like a boy, and another day like a girl, or some other gender. It has been in use since at least the 1990s. In the 2016 Nonbinary/Genderqueer Survey, 947 of the respondents (31%) called themselves genderfluid, or otherwise called themselves "fluid." In the 2019 Worldwide Gender Census, 2,446 of the respondents (21.76%) were genderfluid, or otherwise called themselves "fluid."
- genderflux. A gender identity that often changes in intensity, so that a person may feel one day as though they have almost no gender, or none at all, and another day they feel very gendered. This usage of the word was coined in 2014 on Tumblr. In the 2016 Nonbinary/Genderqueer Survey, 36 of the respondents (1.18%) called themselves genderflux, or otherwise used "flux" in the word for their gender identity. In the 2019 Worldwide Gender Census, 814 of the respondents (7.4%) were genderflux, boyflux, girlflux, agenderflux, or otherwise called themselves flux.
- genderfuck. A form of gender expression that seeks to subvert the traditional gender binary or gender roles by mixing traditionally masculine (such as a beard) and traditionally feminine (such as a dress) components. Even though it's often used as a gender expression, 0.4% of participants in the 2019 Gender Census identified with this word.
- genderless. Having no gender identity. A synonym of agender. In the 2016 Nonbinary/Genderqueer Survey, 17 of the respondents (0.56%) called themselves genderless. In the 2019 Worldwide Gender Census, 1,546 of the respondents (13.75%) used the word genderless for themselves.
- gender neutral. This can mean having nothing to do with gender, or is inclusive of any gender. It can mean having no gender identity, being genderless. Or it can mean having a gender identity that is neutral: not female, not male, not a mix; compare neutrois. In the 2016 Nonbinary/Genderqueer Survey, 420 of the respondents (13.75%) called themselves neutral. In the 2019 Worldwide Gender Census, 1,390 of the respondents (12.36%) said they were neutral, transneutral, gender neutral, neutral gender, or other similar words.
- genderqueer Any gender identity or expression which is queer, in and of itself. That is, a gender which is transgressive and non-normative. This can be an umbrella term, or a specific identity. The earliest known recorded use of genderqueer was in 1995, in the Transsexual Menace newsletter. In the 2016 Nonbinary/Genderqueer Survey, 1,244 of the respondents (40.72%) called themselves genderqueer. In the 2019 Worldwide Gender Census, 3,274 of the respondents (29.12%) called themselves genderqueer.
- gendervague. Coined in 2014 by many participants of the neurodivergentkin network, who defined it as "a nonbinary gender that [...] is not definable with words because of one’s status as neurodivergent." Autistic activist Lydia X. Z. Brown wrote, "I’ve started referring to myself as gendervague [...] a specifically neurodivergent experience of trans/gender identity. [...] Someone who is gendervague cannot separate their gender identity from their neurodivergence – being autistic doesn’t cause my gender identity, but it is inextricably related to how I understand and experience gender." An author who is gendervague, Max Sparrow, wrote that "[...] disability can affect gender presentation as much as or even more than inherent gender identity. Identity labels so often focus on sifting out one aspect of identity, holding it apart and separate from other aspects of our lives. Gendervague is an inherently intersected identity, honoring two different facets of identity equally, simultaneously more exclusive and more inclusive." In the 2019 Gender Census, 26 respondents (0.23%) called themselves gendervague.
- graygender, greygender, gray agender, or grey agender. (Spelling note: in American English, the color is called gray, but in the rest of the English-speaking world, the colour is called grey.) Graygender was coined by Tumblr user invernom in March 2014. It means "A person who identifies as (at least partially) outside the gender binary and has a strong natural ambivalence about their gender identity or gender expression. They feel they have a gender(s), as well as a natural inclination or desire to express it, but it's weak and/or somewhat indeterminate/indefinable, or they don’t feel it most of the time, or they’re just not that invested in it. They're not entirely without a gender or gender expression, but they're not entirely 'with' it either." In the 2019 Worldwide Gender Census, 31 responses (0.27%) were this. Of them, 5 were graygender, 20 were greygender, 3 were grey, 2 were grey gender, 1 was greygenderflux.
- hijra. In south Asian countries including India, Pakistan, and Bangladesh, the hijra are people who were assigned male at birth, who have a feminine gender expression. Traditionally and today, some hijras seek castration. Hijras live together communally. They have important roles in religious practice. They can be Hindu or Muslim. Hijra traditions are ancient. The earliest mention of hijras is in the Kama Sutra, from 400 BCE to 300 CE. In one of the earliest Western records of them, Franciscan travelers wrote about seeing hijras in the 1650s. From the 1850s onward, the British Raj criminalized and tried to exterminate hijras. Since the late 20th century, hijra activists and non-government organizations have lobbied for official recognition of the hijra as a legal sex other than male or female. This is important for them to be able to have passports, travel, hold jobs, and other rights. They have been successful at achieving legal recognition as another gender in Nepal, Pakistan, India, and Bangladesh. The Hijra in India alone may number as many as 2,000,000 today.
- māhū. In the Kanaka Maoli (Hawaiian) and Maohi (Tahitian) cultures, the māhū (meaning "in the middle") is a traditional gender role outside of the Western concept of gender. It is made of people who may have been assigned either male or female at birth. This tradition existed before Western invaders. The first published description of māhū is from 1789. From 1820 onward, Westerners stigmatized and criminalized māhū. Māhū still exist today, and play an important role in preserving and reviving Polynesian culture. There was one māhū in the 2016 Nonbinary/Genderqueer Survey, and one in the 2019 Worldwide Gender Census.
- maverique. Coined by Vesper H. (queerascat) in 2014. A specific nonbinary gender identity "characterized by autonomy and inner conviction regarding a sense of self that is entirely independent of male/masculinity, female/femininity or anything which derives from the two while still being neither without gender nor of a neutral gender." In the 2016 Nonbinary/Genderqueer Survey, 12 of the respondents (0.39%) called themselves maverique. In the 2019 Worldwide Gender Census, 72 of the respondents (0.64%) said they were maverique or mavrique.
- neutrois. Coined by a neutrois person named H. A. Burnham in 1995. Having one non-binary gender identity that is neutral. Not female, not male, and not a mix. Some neutrois people are transsexual, experience gender dysphoria, and want to get a physical transition. In the 2016 Nonbinary/Genderqueer Survey, 208 of the respondents (6.8%) were neutrois. In the 2019 Worldwide Gender Census, 398 of the respondents (3.54%) were neutrois.
- nonbinary, shortened as NB or enby. Nonbinary is an umbrella term for all who don't identify as just female or male. Though there are innumerable kinds of nonbinary identities, some people identify as "nonbinary" only. In the 2016 Nonbinary/Genderqueer Survey, 1,980 of the respondents (64.81%) called themselves nonbinary, and 477 of the respondents (16%) called themselves enbies. In the 2019 Worldwide Gender Census, 68.37% (7686) of the responses used the word nonbinary for their identity (or for part of their identity), and 3,609 of the respondents (32.1%) called themselves enbies.
- non-gendered. Having no gender. An identity popularized by non-gendered activist Christie Elan-Cane since at least 2000. Due to Elan-Cane's activism, this word has had significant visibility, though it is not one of the more commonly used identity labels in community surveys. In the 2016 Nonbinary/Genderqueer Survey, 2 of the respondents called themselves non-gendered. In the 2019 Worldwide Gender Census, 7 of the responses called themselves non-gendered, nongendered, or non gendered.
- polygender. A polygender person has several gender identities. This can mean they have them at the same time, or that they often switch between them at different times. People called themselves polygender as early as 1995. In the 2016 Nonbinary/Genderqueer Survey, 7 of the respondents (0.23%) were polygender. In the 2019 Worldwide Gender Census, 24 of the respondents (0.21%) were polygender.
- queer. A long-reclaimed slur for the broader LGBT+ community, and an umbrella term for identities that are not heterosexual and/or not cisgender. In the 2016 Nonbinary/Genderqueer Survey, 9 of the respondents (0.29%) used the word "queer" as an identity label, and 1,253 (41%) used the word queer in total, including as part of terms such as genderqueer. In the 2019 Worldwide Gender Census, 4,886 of the responses (43.46%) used the word "queer" as an identity label, some of which used it as their only label for their identity, and 8,177 responses (72.74%) used the word queer in total, including those where it was part of another identity term, such as genderqueer, neuroqueer, or queerdo.
- third gender. Third gender is a concept in which individuals are categorized, either by themselves, by their society, or by outsiders to their society, as not fitting into the Western ideas of binary gender and heterosexual roles. The phrase "third gender" has been used for a wide variety of meanings: intersex people whose bodies do not fit outdated Western medical concepts of binary sex, hundreds of indigenous societal roles as described (and often misrepresented) by Western anthropologists (including indigenous identities such as south Asian hijras, Hawaiian and Tahitian māhū, and Native American identities now called Two-Spirits), transgender people who are nonbinary, homosexual people (even those who are white and in Western societies), and women who were considered to be gender-nonconforming because they fought for women's rights. Some people self-identify as third gender, especially in communities of people of color in the United States. In the 2016 Nonbinary/Genderqueer Survey, 84 of the respondents (2.75%) called themselves third gender. In the 2019 Worldwide Gender Census, 244 of the respondents (2.17%) called themselves third gender.
- transfeminine. A transgender person who transitions in a feminine direction, but who doesn't necessarily identify as female. They may have a nonbinary identity. In the 2016 Nonbinary/Genderqueer Survey, 206 of the respondents (6.74%) called themselves transfeminine. In the 2019 Worldwide Gender Census, 702 of the respondents (6.24%) were transfeminine.
- transmasculine. A transgender person who transitions in a masculine direction, but who doesn't necessarily identify as male. They may have a nonbinary identity. In the 2016 Nonbinary/Genderqueer Survey, 434 of the respondents (14.21%) called themselves transmasculine. In the 2019 Worldwide Gender Census, 2,226 of the respondents (19.8%) were transmasculine, trans masculine, trans masc, or transmasc.
- Two-spirit. "Berdache" was an old word used by European-American anthropologists. Berdache was an umbrella term for all traditional gender and sexual identities in all cultures throughout the Americas that were outside of Western ideas of binary gender and heterosexual roles. These identities included the nádleeh in Diné (Navajo), and the lhamana in Zuni, among many others. In 1990, an Indigenous lesbian and gay international gathering chose to internationally replace "berdache" with "Two-Spirit" as a preferable umbrella term for these identities. Two-Spirit was chosen to distance these identities from non-Natives, and should only be used for people who are Native American, because it is for identities that must be contextualized in Native cultures. Because of the wide variety of identities under the Two-Spirit umbrella, a Two-Spirit person does not necessarily have an identity analogous to a non-Native nonbinary gender identity. Some do, but others are more analogous to non-Native gay male or lesbian woman identities. Notable people who identify specifically with the label "Two-Spirit" include Menominee poet Chrystos (b. 1946), who goes by they/them pronouns, and Ojibwe artist Raven Davis (b. 1975), who goes by neutral pronouns. In the 2016 Nonbinary/Genderqueer Survey, 8 of the respondents (0.26%) called themselves Two-Spirit. In the 2019 Worldwide Gender Census, 0.18% (20) of the responses called themselves Two-Spirit.
- X-gender (Ｘジェンダー, ekkusujendā). In Japan, this is a common transgender identity that isn't female or male, much as the words "genderqueer" and "nonbinary" has come to be in the English-speaking world, to such a degree that "X-gender" is typically used as the Japanese translation for these. Therefore, a person does not need to be Japanese to be X-gender. The term "X-gender" began to be used during the latter 1990s, popularized by writings published by queer organizations in Kansai, in Osaka and Kyoto. Notable X-gender people include manga artist Yuu Watase (渡瀬 悠宇), who created the comics Fushigi Yūgi and Ceres, Celestial Legend. In April and May of 2019, Japan LGBT Research Institute Inc. conducted an online survey. It collected a total of 348,000 valid responses from people aged 20 to 69, not all of whom were LGBT. 2.5% of the respondents called themselves X-gender. This identity term was underrepresented in the 2019 Worldwide Gender Census, in which 4 of the respondents called themselves X-gender.
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