What is the difference between transgender and transexual?
Transsexual refers specifically to be people who transition from one gender to another, i.e. a male transitions to female and vice-versa.
Transgender is a term that encompasses a variety of gender expressions, behaviors, and identities that do not conform with the sex a person was assigned at birth. It's a lot less cut-n-dried than 'transsexual' because the word includes people who do not conform to one gender identity or another, people who have more than one gender, or people who have no gender.
As I understand it, the two terms are interchangeable except in medical terminology where transsexual refers to people who have drug therapy or surgery to better align their bodies with their innate gender and/or self-image. Transgendered is more a general term describing a person at odds with the gender he or she was assigned at birth.
Some transgendered people simply seek more fluid gender roles. Some cross dress. Some live as the opposite sex. Some do drug therapy. Some have surgery. Some do all of the above.
Transgendered people are born male, female and intersex. Being transgendered or transsexual doesn't have anything to do with sexual preferences. Like the rest of us, they may be gay, lesbian, straight, bisexual, asexual, pansexual, or whatever.
I'm pretty sure it's the same thing, but I've never heard anyone use "transexual" before.
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