Hello all! This is a post for people confused by the terms we otherkin like to use. Let’s begin.
First, the term otherkin itself. It basically just means that the individual identifies as non-human for whatever reason. This is usually a belief that they are physically human but spiritually/in their souls non human. Some otherkin, however, suffer delusions and may believe they are physically non-human. This doesn’t make them any less otherkin, for various reasons.
Therian. Therians are a subgroup of otherkin made entirely of species that exist or once existed on this planet. Dinosaurs, dodo birds, seagulls, wolves, and sharks would be example of otherkin included in this category.
Fictionkin. Fictionkin believe that they were a fictional character. There are a lot of explanations, ranging from reincarnation to “I am this person in another universe”. They sometimes feel uncomfortable with the idea of anyone else being the same character they are, but most get along just fine. No, this does not mean they just really really like a character.
Fictives aren’t actually otherkin, but I’ll cover them for a second since they tend to be mentioned alongside fictionkin, despite being very different. Fictives are directly caused by mental illness and occur in multiple systems (sometimes a symptom of DID, sometimes something else). They are not fictionkin, however, because they are literally the character, where fictionkin are the reincarnation of/parallel universe self of the fictional character. (Correct me if I’ve got anything wrong here, I did my research but may have been misinformed.)
Oceankin, spacekin, forestkin, etc. These kintypes are really just otherkin being lazy when tagging. Basically, we’re wrapping up an entire group of otherkin under one tag. Forestkin would include things like deer, bears, foxes, birds, mice, etc. As it’s difficult to go through that entire list and name them all, we tend to just bunch them together and call them one thing. Plus, naming them all would take eons.
Star seeds. Also not otherkin (at least I think so, the definition is a bit blurry). Essentially this group believes that their soul has been reincarnated on other planets throughout the universe, some only a few times, others hundreds or thousands of times.
Kintype vs Kinself. These are two separate terms! Kintype refers to the type of creature you were, whereas kinself refers to who you were specifically. For example, my kintype is dragon, whereas my kinself is who I was, a giant purple-black dragon with a habit of hoarding old books.
I’ll add more as I think of them, or if anyone would like to add something specific, feel free! (Unless your facts are “facts” in which case kindly go bother someone else.)
Most of this is a very good reference, however there is just one problem.
Fictives are not specifically tied to mental illness of any kind. The are tied to multiplicity/plurality/soulbonding. Some do exist as a result of mental illness but many fictives (and their headmates) are perfectly healthy within a multiple system. Multiplicity/plurality is not inherently disordered and many multiples are completely functional and object to being called mentally ill.