Facebook Rolls Out Gender-Neutral Family Options

facebook-thumbs-upDo you have a trans parent? How about an intersex sibling? Maybe a bigender child?

For most of us, the answer is no. But for those who do have family members who fall outside the gender binary, you’ll now be able to define your relationships on Facebook more accurately.

A new set of options for family connections has been rolled out to give people a wider spectrum of gender-neutral terms to choose from:


Earlier this year, Facebook introduced a new set of labels to self-identify, offering 50 options including androgynous, bigender, intersex, genderfluid and transsexual. Following user feedback, the list was bumped up to 70.

Trans Facebook software engineer Brielle Harrison said:

“There’s going to be a lot of people for whom this is going to mean nothing, but for the few it does impact, it means the world.

All too often transgender people like myself and other gender nonconforming people are given this binary option, do you want to be male or female? What is your gender? And it’s kind of disheartening because none of those let us tell others who we really are.

This really changes that, and for the first time I get to go to the site and specify to all the people I know what my gender is.”

Professor Stephen Whittle, Vice-President of Press for Change added:

“Gender identities are complex and for many people, describing themselves as just a man or just a woman has always been inadequate.

By challenging the gender binary, Facebook will finally allow thousands of people to describe themselves as they are now and it will allow future generation of kids to become truly comfortable in their own skins.”

h/t: Pink News

Get Queerty Daily

Subscribe to Queerty for a daily dose of #facebook #transgender stories and more


  • 1EqualityUSA

    They fund anti-gay politicians.

  • gskorich

    this whole trans thing is getting out of control. the world is acting like they are the majority and we all need to conform to their needs. its really getting out of hand

  • DickieJohnson

    W.T.F…Seventy? Is this for REAL? Firstly, I can’t believe millions of people spend/waste so much time on Facebook. This mess is beyond sanity, so, again, take the T out of LGBT.

    @gskorich: I’m in total agreement with you. So sorry if I seem *insensitive* to anyone!

  • rcblue73

    I suspect a lot of this is just role playing, plain and simple. Of those who have given me grief for identifying as gay, writing that they are gender neutral or some other thing, have at the same time have been very specific that they are interested only in men (and not any of that trans, gender neutral or non binary stuff)and wanted me to be that special, all man type of their dreams. One guy who described himself as a trans activist/supporter consistently made the point of letting me know he was a very heterosexual male and was also very, very Christian and also seemed rather anti-gay. Then there were some individuals who had identified themselves as pans/trans yet when I came across them at other places on the web they seemed in actuality to be very heterosexual and very hot for men straight women. Me thinks there may be a bit of duplicity involved and as this plays itself out over the years a better picture will emerge.

  • Estraven

    rcblue73, you have sexual orientation and gender identity confused. They are two COMPLETELY separate things. A trans person can be gay, bisexual, or straight. Similarly, a non-binary person (there are MANY ways to be not cisgendered and not transexual either, including genderqueer, gender neutral, etc.) can be gay, bisexual, and straight as well.

    A person can be an ally (trans activist/supporter) and a cisgendered heterosexual.

    Pansexual is a word which means just about the same thing as bisexual. It is not surprising that people using it would be interested in men and women, and again trans people can be bisexual (indeed, a very high percentage of them are).

    Trans people are murdered at a rate of over 80 a years in this country, and the victim of hate crimes at a very high rate. Research shows that it is actually the kids in high school who don’t dress and act according to gender norms who get the most bullying. Being non-traditional in your gender expression brings a high price. People do it anyway, because it is who they ARE, not to “role play,” although sometimes the unending hate drives them to suicide (and trans suicide rates are very high). Facebook doing this will help to show how many of us there are, make it more normal, so the bullying and deaths will stop.

  • TrueWords

    I guess it begs the question (s)….by having these options:

    what does it HURT…

    how does it HURT you…

    why are you standing tall with your rights of identity while DENYING someone theirs…

    oh the vicious circle…now gays get to belittle and negate a group of people just like it was done to them…big wheel just keeps on turning…

  • pressuredrop


    And, in return for this minor semantic concession to the trans community, they will be allowed to continue putting money towards anti-LGBT politicians, thus financially holding their foot over all of our collective necks.

    Yeah, thanks a lot, Facebook.

Comments are closed.