Gender Wiki
Gender Wiki

Intersex pride flag designed by Organisation Intersex International Australia.

An intersex pride flag created by Natalie Phox. (Higher Quality)

An intersex person has sex characteristics such as sexual anatomy, reproductive organs, and/or chromosome patterns that do not fit the typical definition of male or female. This may be apparent at birth or become so later in life e.g. puberty. Intersex people, just like dyadic people, may identify with any sexual orientation or gender identity. According to the ISNA it is estimated that 1.7% of people are born with intersex traits, however this may be incorrect, as many people are unknowingly intersex due to the fact that external genitalia is the only sex characteristic noticed at birth (in most cases).

Being intersex is often treated as a medical disorder which is to be corrected with treatments such as hormone therapy or surgery to give the person "normal" sex characteristics. If an intersex condition is discovered at birth or during childhood then medical procedures may be performed without the child's or parent's given consent, and many intersex people are not notified of their condition even as adults, and most intersex activists fight against this. The intersex community often denotes assigned sex using the terms CAFAB and CAMAB, standing for Coercively Assigned Female/Male At Birth, meaning they were forced to have surgery to fit into a binary sex(male or female).

Even though Intersex is widely known as a part of the LGBTQ+ community, some Intersex people don't consider themselves part of the community.

Flag and symbols

Most common Intersex symbol user

The most commonly used intersex flag was created by Morgan Carpenter in 2013. Yellow and purple were chosen for the design as alternatives to the strongly-gendered colors of blue and pink. The purple circle in the middle symbolizes "wholeness and completeness" as well as "the right to be who and how we want to be."

An earlier flag design was made by Natalie Phox in 2009, though is flag is less commonly used today. It was originally introduced as a bigender flag, but Phox later added the correction that it was an intersex flag, which caused confusion around the intention of the flag. It is likely that this flag was introduced as a bigender flag due to the distinction between gender and sex not being as common knowledge during the time of its creation, rather than initially being made to represent the identity known as "bigender" today, as its description when first posted referred to biological sex, but called it "gender" instead. Because it was posted under the name bigender, some people mistakenly claim it as a bigender flag, but Phox's design has always been intended to represent intersex people.

The Mercury symbol (☿) is a common intersex symbol, used as a compliment to the male and female symbols. It was originally used for hermaphroditism. It depicts the staff of the Roman messenger god, based on the caduceus. The symbol is also sometimes used for non-binary people, androgyne people, genderfluid people, or gender non-conforming people.

Another Intersex symbol

Another intersex symbol is the astronomical symbol for Earth (ⴲ), once again chosen as a compliment to the male and female symbols, as Earth is in between Venus (female) and Mars (male). This symbol is sometimes preferable because it is only used to represent intersex people, and is not used for any other identities.

Intersex is sometimes also represented with a combination of the male and female symbols (⚥ or ⚨), though these symbols are also commonly used to represent bigender and androgyne respectively.

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