- JFCS of Greater Philadelphia

Dear Ally,

What is trans vs transgender? The difference that is. Thank u!


Dear Mia,

Thanks for reaching out and asking such an important question. Over time, language used within and by transgender and non-binary communities changes to meet the current and growing needs of those communities. With gender being a spectrum with infinite possibilities, transgender or trans, which is shorthand for transgender, is often used interchangeably as an umbrella term for transgender, trans, trans*, non-binary, gender diverse, and gender-nonconforming identities. With this being said, not every person who identifies as a gender that is included or listed under the trans umbrella self-identifies as trans. It’s very important to be mindful of this and not make any assumptions. It’s always good to ask a person who identifies as transgender or non-binary what it means to them as it varies from person to person. For more information on specific terminology, a good resource to refer to is The Trevor Project’s “Coming Out As You – The Guide” at http://www.thetrevorproject.org/pages/the-guide. Please know we are here if you have any questions in the future.


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