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"I just don't understand how you can be non-binary-gendered. That is, not female or male."
I want you to lie for me. If you’re a woman, say “I am a man.” If you’re a man, say “I am a woman.” Say it out loud. Say it to your reflection. Do you feel that little disconnect there, where the sentiment you’re articulating doesn’t match up with the reality you experience? You know you’re lying. Even if someone else comes up and says “Hey! That’s right! That’s definitely what you are,” you will still know you’re lying.
I can’t speak for everyone, but that’s what happens to me when I try to place myself as either male or female. I could stand up and say “I am a man,” and know, to my bones, that I was lying. Just as I’d be lying if I said “I am a woman.”
It’s not a matter of thinking, “I can’t be a man/woman if I want to do or like these things.” I know that as a woman, I could still have a career, join the military, roughhouse, be athletic, be great at science – all those stereotypically male things. I know that as a man, I could still stay at home, raise kids, bake, knit, show my emotions easily and often – all those stereotypically female things. My gender identity is not about what I want to do, it’s about who I am.
This is not a new idea. Cultures across the globe have acknowledged more than two genders, from the Middle Kingdom of Egypt to the Lakota of North America, from Mayan civilization to the Siberian Chuckhi. References to persons neither male nor female date back to some of humanity’s most ancient written records, such as the Sumerian creation myth, and survive in seminal religious texts such as the Ramayana and the Halakha.
If you want to learn more, the citation list on Wikipedia’s article on “Third gender” has links and references to scholarly articles, books, studies, and excerpts which might help you get an idea of the nature and history of various non-binary identities. Or you can look at more contemporary accounts, such as Neutrois.com, or the discussion on AVEN’s site on “What it feels like to be trans, genderqueer or genderless”. Remember that no single narrative will be able to represent all people, and different nonbinary people may have different preferred terms, explanations, and experiences.
10 Odd ways to say you're Trans*
1: I got into a fight with my chromosomes and lost.
2: My birth certificate and I don’t see eye to eye.
3: I was tired of playing hide and seek with my gender.
4: I ‘m on the run from the gender police.
5: I traded in my gender for the newer model.
6: I forgot to pay the gender bill.
7: My gender is like origami, folded as I please.
8: I’ve been bitten by a gender bending werewolf!
9: I woke up on the wrong side of the gender spectrum.
10: I was a glitch in the matrix, expect updates.
I was asked recently what websites I found helpful when it came to my genderqueer identity - below are some links:
Forums - Great place to ask questions
View pictures of top/bottom surgery by doctor/type
Gender play toys/packers/etc
Info for doctors with trans*/gender non conforming patients
Why to stop asking "male or female"
I got a (very small, off-tumblr) amount of flak from my last bit about TextPlus requiring you to specify your gender when registering, with the justification that they “need” it for marketing data for their advertising purposes, and with the icons they selected being a simple visual shorthand (one similar cited example was the gender markers on bathroom doors). Ignoring the fact that I think that gendered bathrooms are unnecessary and outmoded and that restroom symbols are at least universally-recognized (rather than these bespoke icons that focus on hair length, of all the stupid things), perhaps some other examples are in order.
“Are you black or white?”
“Is your hair brown or blonde?”
“Do you prefer your eggs scrambled or sunny-side up?”
“Boxers or panties?”
“Paper or plastic?”
All of those cases are just as legitimate for marketing research purposes. They are also binary choices where it is clearly obvious that they are not the only two choices, and if these are required selections that you must choose exactly one of to continue, well, even if it covers the vast majority of the user base, that’s pretty off-putting, right?
And that is what non-binary-gendered people encounter every single day.
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I don’t understand what motivates a person to try to convince another person that their gender identity doesn’t exist, that their self-identification of their gender is invalid, or that their inner experience of their gender doesn’t matter.
Unless I am severely mistaken about the way the world works, there is literally nothing that can be gained from convincing (read: gaslighting) someone into believing that they are a different gender than they say they are. If you are trans and doing this, you are doing the exact same thing that cis people do to us.
A Word About Words
Am I the only non-binary person out there who doesn’t like the title Mx ?
First off, I’m not sure if it’s supposed to be pronounced Mix or Mixter, though I’ve mainly heard the latter. Second, it’s exactly like ‘Miss’ or ‘Mister’ but with an ‘x’ thrown in. No offense meant to people who do like and use it, but really? Is that the best we can come up with? :/
So, main question: Excluding Dr. and military ranks, has anyone heard of any other gender-neutral titles?
Since, judging from my Dashboard several “gender abolitionists” are either using the term agender or they are becoming associated with it, it needs to be said:
SOME OF US ARE HONESTLY AGENDER, NEUTROIS, OR SOME VARIANT OF GENDERLESS BUT ARE NOT GENDER ABOLITIONISTS.
That is some appropriative bullshit going on. Just because I identify as agender, doesn’t mean I want the whole fucking world to “abandon the concept of gender.”
Just so you fuckin’ know. :|