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» Got Questions? Get Answers. » SCARLETEEN CENTRAL » Gender Issues » Too much thinking, not enough genderqueer homies.

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Author Topic: Too much thinking, not enough genderqueer homies.
Aemilie
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Kiiinda long story ahead:

¡Hola, Scarleteen! Will you accept a 27-year old? I love the discussions on gender that are happening here. As for me, I was assigned female at birth. I'm asexual and have been out to most people for about 6 years. I also identify as genderqueer, have been considering the identity for years, but haven't really told anyone. Probably because I'm constantly questioning it myself. Like, so constantly that it's probably moved into the intrusive-thought category. I'm always wondering if I'm "making it all up", feeling guilty or shameful about my gender identification, like a fraud, like I "should know this by now", like it's pointless to even think about, etc. Maybe these kind of repetitive thoughts come from my depression and anxiety. I'm trying to accept it as that, and just marinate with my confusion for awhile without letting it freak me out. It isn't easy, though. I'd like to find a therapist who's conversant in these issues, but I haven't had luck with it in the past.

I want to be able to talk to people about this stuff, but I don't have any other genderqueer people in my life (at least, not knowingly). I can talk pretty openly with most friends and family about my sexuality, but I don't feel comfortable talking with them about my gender yet. I also worry that other genderqueer or non-binary people wouldn't accept me, since I don't think I "look" genderqueer, whatever that means. (Yeah, I'm aware on an intellectual level that there's no way to "look genderqueer", but I worry about other people's judgments.) I'm always read as female, no matter what I do to my appearance, and I've never been harassed specifically about my gender (although failure to conform to gender roles may have been a factor in some bullying incidents of the past).

It's hard for me to describe my gender identity exactly. I've never had much of an inherent sense of gender and I don't understand what makes something "masculine" or "feminine". I don't like that people put me into a gender box when I want them to see me as a person first. In an ideal world, I'd be able to switch back and forth between being male and female. So I'm more of an androgyne than genderless. My inner vision of myself doesn't match my outer self, which is frustrating at times. Although it's hard to know if it's really my inner self, or just one persona.

Over the years I've done so much reading about gender, but expanding my conception of gender has just confused me more. Maybe that's not such a bad thing, and I feel like it'll work out in time...but I'd still like to talk to some like-minded people who can relate to this stuff.

[ 09-14-2011, 08:11 PM: Message edited by: Aemilie ]

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Heather
Executive Director & Founder
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It's very cool of you to double-check about age. That's just fine, we just like to put younger people first here, is all. [Smile]

You know, personally, you sound a lot like me around gender. In fact, I always have to work pretty hard around trans friends with my language -- for whom it is often an understandably big issue -- to watch my gender words and pronouns, because it tends to make so little difference to me, in how I feel it and perceive others that it's all too easy for me to forget that to a lot of other people, it really matters a lot. I'm not asexual, but as someone queer who can potentially be attracted to pretty much any gender equally, that only makes it more easy for me to space.

I don't think there is a "looking" genderqueer (or any gender ID, for that matter), even if, for sure there are some popular presentations of gender identity, including for GQ folks, so I get how you might feel like you would be expected to look a certain way.

Honestly, I think being gender nonconforming is a whole lot like being something other than straight: if we didn't really feel it, we'd be unlikely to identify as anything besides the presumed defaults, because it sure would be easier, right?

I also think it might help to realize that our gender identity, just like every other part of our identity, is often ever-changing in plenty of ways. So, it feeling elusive sometimes isn't surprising, just like sometimes how we identify and feel who we are in other respects can be elusive or feel something less than very clearly formed.

--------------------
Heather Corinna, Executive Director & Founder, Scarleteen
About Me • Get our book!
Never doubt that a small group of thoughtful, committed citizens can change the world. Indeed, it is the only thing that ever has. - Margaret Mead

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Aemilie
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Thanks for the reply, Heather! Yeah, I can relate to what you're saying...for me personally, I feel like gender is mostly a social construct, but I know that for many people, it's much more real.

I think part of what makes it confusing is that my gender identity is much more fluid than my sexuality. (I know some people are the opposite, or something else entirely.) Honestly, my sexuality was pretty easy to pin down, so I wonder why I can't do the same with gender. [Roll Eyes] Now that I'm starting to realize that, I think maybe I can become more comfortable with the uncertainly.

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Heather
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That sounds like a pretty awesome AHA! [Smile]

--------------------
Heather Corinna, Executive Director & Founder, Scarleteen
About Me • Get our book!
Never doubt that a small group of thoughtful, committed citizens can change the world. Indeed, it is the only thing that ever has. - Margaret Mead

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Aemilie
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I hope it will be... [Wink]
Posts: 5 | From: USA | Registered: Sep 2011  |  IP: Logged | Report this post to a Moderator
   

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