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Bigender (bi+gender) or "bi-gender" is a gender identity that encompasses two genders, whether at the same time or at different times. These two may be male and female, or they may be either male or female plus a third, non-binary gender. Bigender people may or may not present as the gender or genders they identify as at any given time. It is a subset of transgender.
Use of term
It is worth noting that this concept emerged from within the transgender community itself, rather than being adopted after it was created by another sub-culture (for example, transsexual was defined first by the mental health community).
Because bigender is still a self-applied label, it is not possible to give a definitive outline of the typical bigender. Any description of a bigender is just an example of what someone who identifies as bigender might be like. Although there are patterns, the only firm characteristic is the sense of dual gender.
Some express their bigender identity through presenting part-time as a gender other than the one they are assigned at birth. Bigender people are not cross-dressers or drag kings/drag queens, as those terms refer to individuals who present as a gender other than the one they were assigned but still identify as their assigned gender. Other bigender people may adopt a strictly masculine, feminine, or androgynous appearance and experience the shift between genders on a purely mental, or only subtly physical, level.
Bigender and sexual orientation
It might seem that a bigender identity must go with a bisexual identity but gender identity and sexual orientation are independent. It is possible to be bigender and not bisexual, or bisexual but not bigender.
For some bigenders, labels like gay, lesbian or bisexual can seem less relevant or satisfactory due to their focus on physiological sex. Some might prefer terms that refer to gender (see Gynephilia and androphilia), while others might prefer to not specify a sexual orientation at all. Since bigender is a gender-related term, not an erotic one, a person who is bigender can of course be on the asexual spectrum.
Bigender and "healthy multiplicity"
Some people who experience themselves as being two completely different people in one body—not just in the sense that they sometimes feel masculine and sometimes feel feminine—also use the term "bigender" to describe themselves in the event that the two people are of different genders, one male-identified and one female-identified. In this situation, at times when the person who is of the opposite gender to the body sex is dominant, they may experience similar feelings to a trassexual. This phenomenon is sometimes seen as a kind of healthy multiplicity, that is to say, where a person has experiences similar to those described in dissociative identity disorder (also known as multiple personality disorder), but is able to come to terms with it, usually with the two people being aware of each other and cooperative, and does not wish to be seen as having an illness.
However, bigender does not normally imply separate identities in this sense.
- List of transgender-related topics
- A forum for bigender people to gather, find support and share experiences.
|This page uses content from Wikipedia. The original article was at Bigender. The list of authors can be seen in the . As with LGBT Info, the text of Wikipedia is available under the Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 3.0.|