Trans is an umbrella term for those whose gender identity and/or gender expression differs from the sex they were given at birth, for example, transgender or transsexual people. Some trans people may feel that they are a man born into a female body or a woman born into a male body, but not necessarily.

Trans people may also identify as gender-neutral, genderqueer or gender fluid, non-binary, and may indentify as a combination of male and female or as neither.

Many trans people know they are trans from a very young age, while others say that they only identified as trans during their teens. The term trans is the preferred term for many transgender people.

If you are friends with or know a trans person then it's important to address them with the gender they refer to themselves as and refer to them with their chosen name and gender pronoun.

What's the difference between trans and other forms of gender identity?

  • A transsexual person is someone whose gender identity is the opposite of the sex assigned to them at birth. Transsexual people may or may not take hormones or have surgery.
  • Cross-dressers are people who like to wear the clothes of another gender, but who don't identify as another gender.
  • Drag Kings/Drag Queens are people who exaggerate female and male roles, generally for the purpose of entertainment.
  • Androgynes are people who mix the characteristics/appearance of both sexes in a subtle or deliberately flamboyant way.
  • Intersex People are people who can be born with a reproductive or sexual anatomy that doesn’t fit with typical definition of male or female.


For more information about gender, or if you'd like to speak to a professional about gender, visit

Find and contact support groups near you at which contains the most up-to-date listings for online and offline trans communities.