The Givens: Gender Identity
"Sex" is what you are assigned at birth, generally based on whether you have a penis or a vagina. "Intersex" or "disorders of sexual development" are the current terms for people whose genitals and/or internal reproductive organs do not clearly fit into one of the two binary classifications and/or who have chromosomal structures other than XX or XY.
"Gender identity" is your internal sense of whether you are male, female, or another gender and is not necessarily visible to others. Because gender identity is internalhow a person sees themselvesit is impossible to know someone's gender identity without overtly asking them, which is not always appropriate when providing services to them.
For most of the general population, sex and gender identity alignthe sex assigned at birth matches the gender with which they identify. Transgender people, however, have a gender identity that does not match the sex they were assigned at birth.
Everyone has a gender identity, and transgender people may have more than one. Some will align with the word transgender, although a growing number either never considered themselves transgender or do not embrace the term. For example