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What does cisnormative mean?

Cisnormative is one such word and its meaning is simply the typical or expected behaviour from a particular gender role: at its simplest the binary of Man and Woman.

So as an example, if you’re born male, grow up, and are treated as a male, it might be considered cisnormative for him to play with toy soldiers, like football, or have his bedroom colour blue.

In the same way, it would be considered cisnormative for a girl to grow up liking and dressing in pink and playing with dolls.

A person living a cisnormative life is a cisgender person who dresses and acts in a way that might be described as typical for their gender and biological sex.

Many of these choices are actually impacted by parental decisions rather than a child’s actual wishes. This was proven in a recent BBC two documentary called Gender Free.

What does Cisegener mean?

The word Cis has its origins in Latin – and means “on the same side as”, whereas the word Trans means “across, beyond” in Latin. You can read more about being cisgender and what it means here.

Is Cisnormative A slur?

What does cisnormative mean and is it a slur?
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Not at all – it is a description of how a person might be living their life. The fact is most people in the world are cisnormative – that doesn’t make it a good or a bad thing, but it does make it the dominant way of being.

What can be really helpful for non-cis people, i.e. Non-Binary, Transgender, or Gender non-conforming people is if cisgender people acknowledge their status and how difficult it might be for those who don’t fit into a “normative” world.

You can add your comments below if you’d like us to update the meaning we’ve used here.

This article was first published by THEGAYUK but has been adapted and changed.

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