There are many terms that come up when discussing gender and you may hear words that begin with “cis”.

geralt / Pixabay

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 which might be described as typical for their gender and biological sex.

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


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



Help us deliver unique, usable and reliable journalism that supports the gay, bisexual and curious community of the United Kingdom. Can you help protect LGBT+ media? Publishers like us have come under severe threat by the likes of Google and Facebook. The problem is that advertisers are choosing to put their money with them, rather than with niche publishers like us. Our goal is to eliminate banner ads altogether on site and we can do that if you could pledge us a tiny amount each month.

We’re asking our readers to pledge just £1 per month, more if you’re feeling swanky. You can stop payment at any time.

It’s quick and easy to sign up and you’ll only have to do it once.

Click to start the journey and support THEGAYUK!

A note from the editor.

These are tough times for us all. Without a doubt. But we're here for you and want to continue being here for you for the foreseeable future. needs your help to survive. Due to the nature of the articles that we publish, we find it very hard to monetize our site and have been heavily restricted by ad platforms. This leaves us two ways of making money to keep this site going. 1) We run an online shop which we encourage you to visit and if you can make a purchase and 2) We run popup shops at the prides we media partner with. As you'll no doubt be aware the majority of pride events have been cancelled or postponed for 2020, which leaves our site at risk of closure.

Around 70 per cent of our funding comes from these popup shops. So we have a severe funding shortfall for 2020.

If just 100 people who use this site each donated £2 per month we'd be able to pay for the hosting for the rest of the year - meaning we can continue to keep THEGAYUK online. Please, if you can, consider donating £2 or whatever you can to keep us going.

Thank you.