FAQs About Being Gender-Fluid: Other Terms, Pronouns and More

Written by Resurchify | Updated on: February 13, 2023

FAQs About Being Gender-Fluid: Other Terms, Pronouns and More

Do you ever feel that you can’t relate to any one specific community whether it is the Binary (male and female) or any of the known Non-Binary (LGBTQ+) identities and expressions, how you feel and express yourself keep changing from time to time? Then there are chances that you may be Gender Fluid. 

Gender Fluidity

Gender fluid, just like its name refers to individuals who have fluid gender dynamics rather than static ones. Something to keep in mind is that being gender fluid is not about their sexuality. 

Simply saying Gender-Fluid people are those who do not abide by or say conform to gender roles set by society. Their gender identity and gender expressions may vary across time, meaning the way they want to express and feel about their gender change from time to time, it may change in a day, week, month, or year. 

The fluidity of gender can be either in identity or the way they express themselves physically or even both. It means that may want to embrace their feminine side at one point and it changes to a sudden show of masculinity or even no gender at all. 

To understand gender fluidity, it is crucial to have an understanding of the following terms and concepts.

Binary Gender

Binary gender refers to the idea that there are only two distinct genders that are Male and Female. 

Society assigns these genders based on their sex at the time of birth and aspects to behave, act, and have sexuality in a certain way based on these genders. 

For example, 

Male should be

  • Masculine 
  • Strong 
  • Source of income of the house
  • Less or non-expressive of their emotions
  • They should be dressed in a certain way such as in shirts pants, blazers, etc. 
  • Their sexuality should be heterosexual meaning they should be attracted to females only. 

Female should be 

  • Soft spoken
  • Emotionally sensitive or vulnerable
  • Managing house and kids
  • They should be dressed in a certain way such as in skirts, tops, etc. In a nutshell, they should be feminine. 
  • Their sexuality should be heterosexual meaning they should be attracted to males only. 

Non-Binary Gender

Non-binary gender is an umbrella term for those who don’t adhere to society's definition and requirement of genders. They see themselves and their choice of living differently from the social norms.

This means that:

  • A male may have feminine traits
  • A female may have masculine traits
  • The sexual preference could be anything such as heterosexual, homosexual, bisexual, pansexual, or even asexual (not sexually attracted to anyone). 
  • Their gender identity and expression may not align with their sex

Some of the most commonly known non-binary genders apart from are as mentioned below:


It refers to people who strictly do not adhere to the gender roles of society. 

Gender Fluid

It refers to people whose gender identity and expressions keep changing from time to time


It refers to people who feel that do not have any gender and are happy being gender-neutral. 


These people consider themselves to have both the gender and act accordingly


Sex is the biological and physiological difference between humans such as 

Their reproductive organs

Internal organs such as testicles for males and ovaries for female, External genitalia such as the penis for males and the vagina for female

Level of Hormones

Usually, the human body has 3 main sexual hormones namely testosterone, estrogen, and progesterone. All three are present in our bodies but the proportions are different as males have a very high level of testosterone compared to females just like females have more estrogen compared to males. Progesterone is present in both with varying proportions. 

Chromosome Structure

Our DNA is made up of chromosomes and the chromosomes which determine the sex of the organism are called sex chromosomes. Usually, we mammals have 2 sex chromosomes X and Y. The combination of these such as XX(female) and XY(male) determines our sex. 

Based on the above-mentioned indicators, sex is assigned to us at the time of birth this is commonly known as natal sex/ biological sex. These sexes are:

  1. Male
  2. Female
  3. Intersex: it is not so uncommon that one of the above factors to determine the sex of a person is imbalanced or not very natural. Meaning there have been many cases since ages and in various cultures that people have been born with contrasting sex indicators that do not align with the binary. 


Gender refers to the sense of how the person feels about themselves (Gender Identity) and how they express themselves (Gender Expression). 

Often gender and sex are mistaken to be interchangeable which is quite not the case. Sex is the biological and physiological difference between individuals whereas gender deals with the sense of self of the person meaning how they want to identify themselves. 

Gender may or may not align with the sex (at the time of birth) of the person and it is completely normal how a person feels about certain things and how they do certain things evolve throughout their life.


 A person is said to have cisgender when the gender they identify to is the same as their sex at the time of their birth (natal sex) that is male or female.

Gender Identity

Gender Identity is how people identify themselves internally. 

The spectrum of cisgender: This means that they may identify themselves as female, male, both, or neither irrespective of their cisgender. This depends on their choice of what they feel like throughout their life. Individuals' gender identity may or may not align with their cisgender. 

To simplify this, let’s take an example. Suppose there is a cisgender female, but this female isn’t like the other cisgender female. There can be many things that differentiate her from them or she may prefer to be like other genders (male or even agender). 

Now it is important to understand that a person doesn’t need to be completely different from their cisgender. They may strongly associate themselves with more than one gender. This is often the case for most gender-fluid people. 

Gender Expression

Gender expression is how people express themselves externally.

The spectrum of masculinity and femininity: this means that people may opt to express themselves in terms of behavior, manners, dressing style, and the way they communicate based on their choice of gender. 

Individuals' gender expression may or may not align with their cisgender. Simply put the person will express themselves the way they find fit for themselves irrespective of their binary gender characteristic defined by society. How people want to express themselves may change over certain time periods for some individuals and those can be said to be gender-fluid people.

Gender Congruence

Gender congruence refers to the peace or the level of acceptance the person has with their gender. Here we should note that gender acceptance doesn’t necessarily have to be cisgender. Rather it’s the gender they identify to. 

Gender Conformity

Gender conformity refers to a situation where the individual accepts their sex as their gender and acts according to the roles of that gender set by society. 

For example, 

An individual born with a high level of estrogen and progesterone, and have ovaries and is given female sex and then when they grow up they choose female as their gender as well and act as per the roles for females in their cultures. Similarly, individuals born with a high level of testosterone, and have testicles that are assigned male sex, and when growing up accept that as their gender, and act as per social roles for their gender in their culture. 

Gender Dysphoria

Gender dysphoria is a condition where an individual is not happy with the gender, gender. This condition can vary depending on the person. Some people could be slightly unsatisfied with their binary gender role. And some people could be extremely disappointed with the assigned role and this could lead to severe mental health issues if not handled with care. 

 Gender Non-Conformity

Gender non-conformity refers to the situation where people do not adhere to the gender role defined as social norms. Here people may not find themselves being uncomfortable or not so interested in what people of the same sex may like. This can be very simple such as cis-woman wearing men's clothes and doing more masculine things that are adopting masculine gender identity and/or gender expression. As well as, a cis-man adopting feminine identity and expressions.  

Note that one doesn’t have to be on the extreme side of the gender or expression spectrum, one can be in between this spectrum or completely out of the spectrum. And those who keep shifting between the spectrum of gender roles and expressions are known as gender fluid. 

You can learn more about various terms using this glossary provided by the LGBTQIA Resource Centre.


 To understand the pronounces for gender-fluid people, we have to under what are pronounces in general. Pronounces are how we generally refer to someone or a group in a sentence or how we want to be referred to in a conversation. It can be understood as an identity we give ourselves other than our name. 

The usual pronounces are 

  • he/him, 
  • she/her
  • they/them/their

Pronounce here can be understood as the way non-binary people want to refer themselves to. We usually use pronounces of the sex to refer to a person, which might not be the case for non-binary, they may want to be referred to by something that is not binary. 

For example, 

  • Some trans male may not like to be referred to as she/her as she doesn’t want to identify as a woman 
  • Some trans females may not want to be referred to as he/him 

Mary Emily O’Hara, a communications officer at GLAAD said that "So, for example, using the correct pronouns for trans and nonbinary youth is a way to let them know that you see them, you affirm them, you accept them and to let them know that they're loved during a time when they're being targeted by so many discriminatory anti-trans state laws and policies,"

Thus, it is always important to ask non-binary people which pronounces they use. 

Apart from the general pronounces sometime non-binary people prefer to use neopronounces. 

Neopronounces are third-person personal pronounce which are not conventional pronounces like ‘he’, or ‘she’. These are gender-neutral pronounces used by the non-binary. 

You might think that non-binary people can and are using they/them then why is there a need for neopronounces? 

 To answer this question first we have to understand that even if non-binary can use they/them pronounce sometimes they have to use singular personal pronounce which is gender biased like he/him or she/her. 

Some non-binary people do not feel comfortable with the usual binary pronounces and they are hard to replace with they/them pronounce to tackle this issue they have developed this gender neutral which they can use to identify themselves. 

The most popular neopronounces are 

  • xe/xem/xyr
  • ze/zir


It can be very difficult for non-binary people to come out to the public as they face a lot of harsh treatment but nowadays with the community raising their voices and spreading awareness about themselves, people have started to understand and appreciate people for who they are. 

It is often seen that those who belong to non-binary communities suffer from minority stress. Minority stress refers to the stress and tension one might face due to being in a minor community. This could be because of a lack of acceptance and support from society, less number of community members, and the harsh treatment by society or other factors. 

We must listen to these people whether you are non-binary or binary, every human has the right to live as how they want to live.  Here are some inspiring stories about how people struggled and know that they are not alone in the journey: “Growing up non-binary in today’s India” by The Hindu. 

Gender fluidity is not so uncommon, if you look around you will find a lot of celebrities coming out as non-binary. LGBTQ Indian Resources is an online resource where you could easily find support and a community of your own in India. 

Here are some organizations that are specifically for the community and their rights:

  • GLAAD: they say about themselves as follows” GLAAD – the world’s largest Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender and Queer (LGBTQ) media advocacy organization – increases media accountability and community engagement that ensures authentic LGBTQ stories are seen, heard, and actualized.”
  • National Center for Transgender Equality (NCTE): they state their mission as follows “The National Center for Transgender Equality advocates to change policies and society to increase understanding and acceptance of transgender people. In the nation’s capital and throughout the country, NCTE works to replace disrespect, discrimination, and violence with empathy, opportunity, and justice.

Frequently Asked Questions

Who Are Gender-fluid People?

Gender-fluid people are those who do not stick to any one gender identity or gender expression for the long term. Being gender fluid has to do with how you identify your gender and how you want to express it and it should be noted that gender fluidity is not directly related to the sexuality of the individual

This means:

  • They do not conform to any one strict binary norm
  • Their gender identity change over the time
  • Their gender expression changes over the time
  • All gender-fluid people are no- binary but not all non-binary are gender fluid

How Do You Know You Are Gender Fluid?

This is a very tricky thing as there are chances that you mistake yourself for other non-binary identities and get confused. You may start to feel gender dysphoria and that can get have major health issues as well as chances of being taken advantage of. 

Thus, you should keep a track of how you feel about gender identity and expression and see where you feel the most comfortable. No need to stress as there are many like you and you can reach out to people. 

As we may not be qualified to tell you whether you are gender fluid or not, you can always seek out an expert therapist who could guide you well. 

Are Gender Fluid And Non-binary The Same Thing?

Non-binary is an umbrella term used to cover all the identities that do not align with the general binary identities (male and female). It is important to know that non-binary differentiate from the binary in terms of their gender identity, gender expression, and sexuality. Meaning they differ in the way they identify themselves, and express themselves, and their sexual orientation based on their sex and gender. 

Gender fluid is one of the identities that are under the non-binary umbrella. It comprises people who are shifting on the spectrum of their identity and expression. Simply saying the way they want to express or identify themselves keeps changing over time and thus the word ‘fluid’ is there. 

Do Gender-fluid Individuals Look A Certain Way?

The answer to this question is NO. It is impossible to judge an individual’s identity based on their looks in general and it is harder for gender-fluid people.

Gender-fluid people have varying gender identities and expressions and thus, their physical appearance may vary too as it is a part of how they want to identify themselves. They may dress feminine or masculine or even want to express themselves as gender-neutral. Thus, it is a good practice to just ask them how they feel like on that day, it may seem awkward at the start but eventually, it becomes normal. 

What Is The Sexuality Of Gender-fluid People?

Sexuality refers to an individual’s sexual attraction, behavior, and feelings toward another individual. It is important to understand that sexuality is not just about physical attraction but includes emotional attraction as well. Sexual orientation means who you are attracted to. 

Gender fluidity depends on individuals' gender identity and gender expression rather than their sexuality. This means that they can have any sexuality such as heterosexual (attracted to the opposite sex), homosexual (attracted to the same sex), bisexual (attracted to both sex), pansexual (attracted to people irrespective of their sex and gender), or even asexual (not attracted to anyone at all).

Is There Any Gender-fluid Fashion Brand?

With varying identities and expressions, styling and fashion on day to day basis can become a stressful matter. But with the growing number of gender-fluid individuals, various brands design specially to cater to the need of this community by providing gender-neutral or not-so-binary fashion. 

Some of these brands are Two Point Two,  Naalgo,  and Biskit.


In this article we understood what it means to be gender fluid, it’s about how you identify and express your gender. It’s not directly related to your sexuality. Gender and sex are often taken as interchangeable words which are not 100% true, your gender can be the same as your sex at birth this is called being binary(male or female), you can be intersex as well, or it can change as you grow up (non-binary). We discussed the importance of pronouncing to the non-binary, as it is a way to tell them that we support them.  

You can conform to your gender and sex, meaning be in complete harmony with it or have gender dysphoria. If you are not satisfied with your gender to align to sex you can identify with one of the non-binary. But being gender fluid is a ride of shifting between this two. It can be very stressful to be gender fluid or non-binary as well because people have a hard time understanding these ideas and are hesitant to accept the change. 

However, now people are gathering up and raising their voices to spread awareness about themselves and call out the unjust behavior against themselves. There are many non-binary people and it is not so uncommon now. Organizations are formed to provide support and fight for the rights of the community. 


It is extremely difficult to understand yourself, and when you feel uncomfortable with how you should act and behave it becomes even more difficult especially if you have no guidance. 

So, if you feel that you are not comfortable with the things that people similar to your gender do and you feel like you don’t belong with them you don’t need to panic or be afraid as it can be very normal, also every human is different from one another. You can read out to professionals who could help you understand your identity and expression. You can change over time and it is okay, embrace yourself as you are. 

You are not alone, there are people like you around you, and if you feel there are none you can always talk and make harmony with your situation. 


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