This is the list of definitions as I use them in the context of this blog. The reason that I use the term Disclaiming is that I have a tendency to use these terms slightly differently than others.
Crossdress – To wear the clothing associated with the gender that is not one’s own
Crossdresser – One who crossdresses and the primary goal is not to garner sexual satisfaction but has a compulsion to do so, though let’s face facts we find it erotic. Crossdressers still identify mostly with the gender associated with their sex. The term Crossdresser came into usage with the gay rights movement as the term Transvestite came to be associated with homosexuality so heterosexual Transvestites started to identify as crossdresser to separate themselves.
Drab – When a crossdresser is in the clothes of the gender associated with their sex. This of course means boring, uninteresting and infers the preference for crossdressing attire.
Drag – Started as an act of Gay protest and is the act of performing the extreme of a gender role typically on stage. Sexual arousal or compulsion is not the drive for many Drag performers. It is also not a requirement for the performance to be of the gender opposite ones sex as the performance is a commentary on social norms
En femme – Femme is the French word for Woman and in the context of crossdressing means a male crossdresser wearing their feminine clothes.
En Homme – Homme is French for Man and though I haven’t seen it I assume in crossdressing it is a female wearing masculine clothes.
Gender – The social and cultural values, acts, definitions and roles that are associated with the biological sex of an individual. This includes clothing, occupation, household role, sexuality, speech pattern to name a few. Whereas sex refers only to the biological definition of Male and Female gender is the social constructs that surround that biological sex and can vary from society to society.
GG – Short for Genetic Girl or Genuine Girl. So anyone born female.
Heteronormative – Is a term that came out of Queer social theory and refers to the social and cultural values that determine the “Normal” gender roles in a heterosexual society that at the time was quite homophobic.
Pass – To present and to be accepted as a member of the opposite sex.
Presenting – The outward presentation a person is choosing and defines how you refer to them. A man presenting as a woman is referred to as she.
Queer – Refers to all Sexual and Gender minorities including but defiantly not limited to: Gay, Lesbian, Bi-sexual, Transsexual, Transvestite, Crossdressing, Asexual, Questioning, Intersex etc. So even though it used to be a Gay insult it now commonly refers to the LGBT Alphabet soup (as I call it). Queer theory is an area of social theory and is fairly common. However there be Dragons here as some people still find it offensive.
Sex – The biological definition of male and female and refers only to role in reproduction. Penis is male Vagina is Female. Sex does not refer to any of the Social or Cultural constructs around male and female.
Transgender – One who more closely identifies with the gender not associated with their sex. These people may make permanent lifestyle choices not associated with their gender, the extreme of this would be living full time as the opposite gender. This term has been expanded to include Transsexuals but this has some problems with it. Though it is a range and a crossdresser by definition is transgendered but the two are seen as separate.
Transsexual – A transgendered person who chooses to undergo medical and cosmetic procedures to make their sex match their gender. This includes hormones, hair removal, breast implants/reduction and Sex Reassignment Surgery (SRS). Though in recent years the term Transgender has been replacing Transsexual as some people feel Transsexual is sexualised. This causes issues as anyone who identifies as transgender is now in the same group. SRS has been changed to GRS (Gender reassignment surgery) though I am not clear how a medical procedure changes your personal social constructs as it only impacts physical characteristics.
Transvestite – From Latin and literally means across dress. Common usage associates the act of wearing the clothing of the opposite gender for sexual gratification however that would be Transvestic Fetishism. Because of this association I do not use this term
Underdress – Wearing the clothes associated with the opposite gender under your normal clothes. So a man wearing panties and a bra under his suit and tie