The Meaning of FTM: What It Is and How To Use It

Do you know the definition of FTM? This article will provide you with all of the information you need on the acronym FTM, including its definition, usage, example sentences, and more!

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What does the acronym FTM stand for?

According to Cyber Definitions and Urban Dictionary, the abbreviation FTM most often stands for female to male. This describes a person who is transgender. This person was born female, but has since transitioned to male. This person will likely use he/him pronouns and use a new name. It is not polite to refer to a trans person by their “dead name,” or their name that they were assigned pre-transition. Someone who is FTM can also be referred to as a transgender man, or trans man for short. A person who is transgender does not identify with the same gender identity as they were assigned at birth. A FTM individual might opt to have top surgery, which is a term for a mastectomy in which the breast tissue is removed. Someone who is transitioning from female to male might take testosterone hormones in order to lower their voice, re-distribute fat, build muscle, and grow facial hair. 

While FTM is exclusively used by people who have transitioned or are transitioning from female to male, for those who are going from male to female, people use the term MTF. This stands for male to female. This person will likely take estrogen and other hormones, and may opt to have different surgeries than other members of the trans community. 

According to The Free Dictionary, the acronym FTM can stand for much more than just female to male. However, these alternate definitions are less common If you do plan to use one of these other definitions, make sure that you provide the reader with enough context so that they can discern the intended meaning. This should be standard practice when it comes to using any acronym that has more than one possible meaning. 

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How can the term FTM be used in a sentence?

The term FTM is often used to describe those who are female-to-male transgender individuals. In this example, Halle is at her first LGBT Student Union meeting and is introducing herself to different students. She meets Kai.

Halle: Hi! I’m Halle. My pronouns are she/her and I identify as a lesbian. What’s you name?

Kai: I’m Kai! Pronouns are he/him. FTM and pansexual.

Halle: Nice to meet you! Are you on the board?

Kai: No, this is my first meeting.

Halle: Mine too! It’s so nice to meet another person who doesn’t know absolutely everyone. Do you want to find a seat?

Kai: Sure!

Here, Kai uses the term FTM to describe his gender identity. This is separate from his sexuality. Kai identifies as pansexual, which means that he does not have a gender preference for the person that he dates. In this next example, Kai is at the doctor’s office, which is often a troublesome time for him. The doctor looks at his form.

Doctor: For sex you put FTM, is that accurate?

Kai: Yeah. I was born a girl but I transitioned in high school. 

Doctor: Good to know, thank you for being so forthcoming. I know it isn’t always easy. I’m MTF myself, I transitioned in medical school. 

What are other acronyms associated with the LGBTQIA+ community?

According to Outright International and The New York Times, there are many different acronyms that one might use within the LGBT community. These may be confusing at first, but they are easy to learn.

  • LGBTQIA – Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender, Queer, Intersex, Asexual. This sometimes has a + added at the end to include other sexualities or gender identities, such as demisexual or pansexual. 
  • QTPOC – Queer and/or Trans People of Color
  • AFAB – Assigned Female at Birth
  • AMAB – Assigned Male at Birth
  • TGNCNB – Transgender, Gender Non-Conforming, Nonbinary
  • MSM/WSW – Men who have sex with men, women who have sex with women
  • GSM – Gender and Sexuality Minority

Overall, the term FTM stands for female to male. This refers to a transgender individual who is transtiioning or who has transitioned from female to male. This person may take hormones or have different surgeries performed to combat gender dysphoria.