The LGBT Health & Development Program

The Diversity of Gender & Sexual Orientation Identities of Transgender Individuals

Posted on April 23rd, 2012 by Alex Coello in Research Blog, Transgender, Video, Youth Blog. No Comments

Check out our latest video with Laura Kuper to learn more about the recent IMPACT publication, published in the Journal of Sex Research.

This study explores the diversity of gender and sexual orientation identities of transgender individuals from an online sample of 292 participants, 18 to 73 years old (mean age of 27.88).  Over the past 10 years transgender has become a popular umbrella term used to refer to individuals who identify with a gender–other than that associated with their birthsex.  Sometimes this term is applied more broadly to include individuals who are gender non-conforming and gender variant.  Just under 300 individuals completed this survey, spread out among rural, urban, and suburban locations across the country.  The sample was relatively young, and had a higher percentage of white and more highly educated participants than that of the general population.

This research shows the full spectrum of both gender and sexual orientation among the transgender/gender non-conforming and gender variant group.  It presents the varying terms used by individuals when identifying both gender and sexual orientation.  Genderqueer was the most common term used by participants born female bodied (73%).  Transgender, female, and transsexual were the most popular terms among the group that were born male bodied.  Sexual orientation identities also varied greatly among each group; pansexual, and queer were the most common orientations among the group born female bodied; straight/heterosexual and bisexual were the most common reported identities among the group born male bodied.  Participants also reported on their current and future intentions with regard to hormones, top surgical reassignment surgery, and bottom surgical reassignment surgery. These results highlight the diversity present within the transgender umbrella.

For more about the many different ways of expressing gender, check out the IMPACT Program’s interactive Gender Identities & Expressions Map.

Please note:  Any statistical data cited in our videos is accurate at the time of publishing.

Filming & Editing: Fasika Ketema
Graphics & Post-production Assistance: Farrin Abbott




Source: Kuper, L. E., Nussbaum, R., Mustanski, B., (2011). Exploring the Diversity of Gender and Sexual Orientation Identities in an Online Sample of Transgender Individuals. Journal of Sex Research, 49 (2-3), 244-54.

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