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Greater Boston PFLAG
P.O. Box 541619
Waltham, MA

Tel: 781-891-5966
Fax: 781-891-7444
Helpline: 866-427-3524

Tax ID#: 04-3272394


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Someone who can be romantically or sexually attracted to either men or women. The attraction need not be equal and may vary at different times.
Civil union
A legally recognized relationship between two LGBT (and sometimes straight) people offered by some states and localities. Civil unions don't provide all of the rights of marriage, and none at the federal level.
The metaphoric refuge where an LGBT person is said to reside until they “come out” (tell people their sexual orientation).
Come out
To reveal oneself as LGBT. This may be voluntary, or someone may be “outed” against their will.
Commitment ceremony

A joining ceremony between two LGBT people. Often religious in nature, but they generally confer no legal rights or obligations.
Crossdresser or drag queen
People (straight or gay) who dress or present opposite to their gender at birth.
A feminine lesbian or one who adheres to a female gender role.
A man who can be romantically or sexually attracted to other men. Often used as a generic term to include lesbians and bisexuals.
Gay bash

To assault, harrass, or intimidate someone because of their perceived sexual orientation or gender identity.

The sense that someone can tell if a person is LGBT.

Acronym for: Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual, Transgender, Queer or Questioning.
Acronym for: Gay/Straight Alliance. Many schools and colleges have student organizations for LGBT people and their allies.
The presumption that everybody is, or should be, straight.
A prejudice, discomfort, or outright hatred toward LGBT people or issues. May be latent, overt, or internalized.
Someone with ambiguous genitalia containing both male and female attributes. Formerly known as hermaphrodite.
A woman who can be romantically or sexually attracted to other women.
A same-sex boyfriend/girlfriend or spousal equivalent; a significant other.
Pink triangle
A jacket badge assigned to gay prisoners in WW-II concentration camps and since appropriated as a symbol of gay pride or identity.
Pride march
A parade to celebrate a day of welcome visibility and camaraderie for LGBT people, their friends, and families.

An inclusive shorthand for people in gender, sexual, or sexual orientation minorities. Long a homophobic slur, it's been reclaimed by many (but not all) LGBT people.
Rainbow flag
A six-color flag symbolizing gay pride. The colors from top to bottom are: red, orange, yellow, green, blue, and violet.
Reparative therapy
The mistaken, harmful, and long discredited notion that gay people can (or should) stop being gay through counseling.
An LGBT person whose manner and appearance conform to cultural gender norms. This could be an effort to fit into a straight society, or it could simply be their natural persona.
Straight ally
A straight person who advocates for their LGBT family members, friends, or fellow citizens.

An umbrella term for people who transition from one gender to another and/or people who defy social expectations of how they should look, act, or identify based on their birth sex. This can include a range of people including: male-to-female (MTF) or female-to-male (FTM) transsexual people and, more generally, anyone whose gender identity or expression differs from conventional expectations of masculinity or femininity. Some transgender people experience their gender identity as incongruent with anatomical sex at birth.

A prejudice, discomfort, or outright hatred toward people in sexual or gender identity minorities. Closely linked with homophobia and misogyny.
A person whose sense of their own sex is at variance with the genitalia they were born with. May be pre- or post-operative.



The rainbow flag was created 30 years ago as a symbol of gay, lesbian, bisexual, and transgender pride.