Sunday, 1 June 2014

Putting the Flags Out for Pride Month

It’s been a while since I wrote a proper article on flags so for the start of this Pride Month here’s a brief look at some of the many flags adopted for and by various sexualities, genders and relationships in the lgbt community.

My main criteria for inclusion is that the flag should be recognised by members of the community it represents. Some are proposed designs which have found support and may not yet have been produced as actual flags but are designed to be flown as such if desired. For the same of visual uniformity I have shown all flags in the same ratio.

There’s only space to give the name of community the flag represents, and it’s year of creation if known. Brief descriptions of some communities are given, just in case they are new to you. I apologise in advance for any misunderstandings or inaccuracies in the descriptions I give. This isn't meant to be the ultimate authority on lgbt flags but a record of their use.
Polyamorous people are those who have multiple, often simultaneous, relationships with others of any gender.
The Two Spirit emblem was adopted by the Committee of the International Two Spirit Gathering.

Intersexuals have often been grouped with hermaphrodites purely because of the presence of the physical properties of male and female sex organs. Some intersexuals also include transgender people who are transitioning and not born as intersex. It has often been called the bi-gender flag.
Lipstick lesbians are those who prefer the more feminine characteristics and don't have physical attraction to masculine lesbians.
Pansexuals have relationships with anyone of any gender or sexuality and, unlike the polyamorous, are often monogamous.
Aromantics don't experience love in the way that it occurs in other relationships. There is close friendship and physical contact.
Genderqueer is an umbrella term for various non-binary relationships - people who do not feel that can be labelled as any one particular sexuality or gender. (See also genderqueer and gender non-binary below)
Autosexuals find that sexual activity with others is a problem, either physically or psychologically, and find satisfaction in exploring and enjoying their own sexual pleasure. In other respects their relationships can be as conventional as any other.
Neutrois is a term which can be used by several other genders/sexualities. What they have in common is a recognition of an asexual or gender-neutral identity. Sometimes trans-sexuals have been included. The flag is also seen as a horizontal tricolour.
Genderfluid people are often grouped with the genderqueer. The difference is often personal to each person.
Hermaphrodite is an old-fashioned term still used among some intersexuals. The physical characteristics of both male and female genders are more noticeable in hermaphrodites, whereas intersexuals may only display this on a genetic level.
Gender non-binary is a sexual identity in the genderqueer spectrum. This is not intended as a replacement for the genderqueer identity or flag but as a companion.
G0y is a recently established term for a gay man who is only interested in masculine men and don't involve themselves in some major parts of the lgbt community (Pride marches, dance culture, etc.). Most importantly, the g0ys (yes, that's the number zero and not the letter O) do not indulge in some sexual practices that are otherwise common in the gay community. The stripes are often shown horizontally.
Androphilia is the sexual attraction to men, irrespective of your own gender/sexuality.
Gynephilia is the sexual attraction to women, irrespective of your own gender/sexuality.
Greyromantic is an umbrella term for several identities, the main characteristics of which are the refusal to have their romantic attraction to someone returned even when a sexual attraction is declared, or they can only feel romantic attraction after an deep emotional bond is formed first.
Demisexuals are almost the same a greyromantics in that no sexual attraction (as opposed to romantic attraction in greyromantics) is felt until after a strong emotional bond is formed.
What I hope this look at some of the many identities that are being recognised with flags will help you realise what a diverse community we live in. However, with so many identities adopting very similar flags I feel there is a need for flag design to become more imaginative.


  1. You post a flag here as an intersexual flag stating that it is often called the Bigender flag. The opposite is true. This flag was put forth in the fall of 2009 by Natalie Phox under the user name nittrusfox as the Bigender Flag. Months later she amended this and added intersexual to the flag´s name stating that it was for Bigender and those that felt that they were between the sexes. Key word here is felt.
    Intersex is a cogenital difference in typical sex characteristics and has nothing to do with feeling one way or the other. The majority of intersex people identify as man or woman and forcing a Bigender identity on them with the use of this flag is problematic at best.
    You also state that "intersexuals" somtimes include Trans people who are not born intersex under this term. The opposite is more often true, Trans individuals claiming intersex status during transition, with some Trans communities placing intersex under the Trans umbrella. To many intersex people this is viewed as Trans appropriation of intersex issues.
    You also use the word intersexual, especially in a Pride flag context this can be highly problematic, implying that intersex has something to do with sexual orientation or sexuality. This is not the case.
    An intersex flag does exist, put forth by Organisation Intersex International:

  2. Many thanks, Kitty. When researching this article I found there were many in the intersex and bigender communities who had different views on each flag. There didn't seem to be any consensus at the time. Perhaps there will soon. I tried to give a representation of the majority view. You also mention my reference to some trans people do not include themselves in the intersex community. If you go on the internet you'll find the opposite to be the case - some do, as is their choice. I do know about the Australian intersex flag you mentioned lastly. I don't think this has quite reached international acceptance yet. I haven't seen it being waved in videos of Pride marches, etc., outside Australia yet. There are many national variations on all the flags. I might plan some articles to cover some of them. Individual perceptions of sexuality are personal. I never try to question other people's chosen identities, but can often get confused by newly-recognised and self-identified sexualities, for which I apologise.

  3. Regards, Tony Scupham-Bilton. I call me Joseph Campestri, and when I was researching about others symbols g0ys, I found your blog and this publication with G0y Flag.

    You said: "G0y is a recently established term for a gay man who is only interested in masculine men and don't involve themselves in some major parts of the lgbt community (Pride marches, dance culture, etc.)." About it, let day something for your instruction, and enlightenment of its readers:

    G0y isn't nor was a gay man, his interest is by women and others g0ys men. G0ys don't involve themselves with all LGBT community because they never were part of it.

    So, your text is, in minimal, bad informed. The G0y Flag was created in 2011, not in 2014.

    Well, I hope to have helped and collaborated for your intellectual growth, as the lecture of this blog helped me to know others groups not related at LGBT.

    Congratulations for your interest and thanks for your comprehension. For more informations:

  4. Hi Joseph. There seems to be two sections of the g0y community with differing views. You have one view, but the majority of internet g0y groups definitely express their physical attraction to men.