Pansexual (often shortened to pan) is the attraction to individuals regardless of gender. As a result, they are attracted to all genders. Pansexual individuals may be described as being "gender blind" showing that gender is not a factor in their attraction to an individual.
The romantic counterpart is panromantic.
Pansexual vs. Other Identities
Pansexuality is often compared to other multisexual identities. In particular, it is similar to omnisexual as they both involve the attraction to all genders. Pansexual and omnisexual are also sometimes used interchangeably. Some individuals may identify as both, however one can make a distinction between them if they wish.
The most commonly sighted difference is that omnisexuals typically feel a difference between genders. This can manifest in having a preference for certain gender(s). It can also manifest as feeling like the act of being attracted to a certain gender feels different than the act of being attracted to other genders. (For example, they may feel like the act of being attracted to a woman feels different then being attracted to a man.) Omnisexuals may also find certain traits only attractive on certain genders.
On the other hand, pansexuality generally does not feel any internal difference between genders, or feels like any difference felt between genders is irrelevant. Although, some pansexual individuals may still have a gender preference, this is typically not caused by an internal difference felt in attraction, or is so minor that one feels it is irrelevant. However, the exact differences between pansexual and omnisexual are not strict and the choice to identify as one over the other may sometimes come down to personal preference.
Pansexual is also often compared to bisexuality. Some bisexuals are attracted to all genders, however not all bisexuals are. Some individuals may identify as both bisexual and pansexual, while others may prefer one over the other. The choice to use one identity over the other usually comes down to individual preference. Some individuals prefer to identify as pansexual over bisexual because pansexual is more specific, and they want to specify that they are attracted to all genders.
Flag and Symbols
The pansexual flag was created in 2010 by shrikeabyssals. The flag's meaning has been loosely defined, but most interpret pink to represent attraction to women, yellow to represent attraction to non-binary individuals, and blue to represent attraction to men.
The second alternate pan flag was designed by Discord user Hey All Scott here! on June 4, 2021.
Another common symbol for pansexuality is the P with an arrow and crossed tail. The cross of the tail represents the cross on the symbol for Venus (♀), used to represent women. The arrow represents the arrow on the symbol for Mars (♂), used to represent men. The symbol predates the flag and is still occasionally used today.
The prefix pan- comes from the Greek word for "all" or "every".