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Sex Vs Gender

Updated: Feb 28


What is Sex?


Sex is a trait defined by various biological attributes.

These can be various different features:

  • Genetic (like X and Y chromosomes)

  • Physical (like your genitals)

  • Hormonal (testosterone and estrogen levels)

While this is generally considered binary (male or female), there are a large group of people who cannot be easily placed into a biological sex binary. Some examples of cases that do not conform to these attributes include:

  • Intersex- Physical features do not align with male or female binaries

  • Chromosomal- extra chromosomes or missing chromosomes

  • Hormonal- sex-based hormone levels don't align with male or female binaries​


What is Gender?


Gender is a combination of social, emotional, and cultural ideas that define how humans interact with each other.

These can be broken down into two sectors: gender identity and gender expression.

Gender Identity

Gender identity is how you perceive yourself on the gender spectrum. This can fall anywhere on the gender spectrum and is not limited to male or female.

Gender Expression

Gender expression is how you display yourself outwardly. This can include the clothes you wear, the way you style your hair, or even the way you talk. This doesn't necessarily have to "match" with your gender identity. It's just how you express yourself! Both gender identity and gender expression are fluid. They can change over time and don't have definitive boxes or categories.


What's the Difference?


Sex and gender ARE NOT the same thing.

Sex is a biological trait that you are born with, just like your eye color or height. Gender is a societal structure; it is how to perceive and express yourself and how that aligns with gender norms and ideals.

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