Gay bars are therapy for people who can’t afford therapy; temples for people who lost their religion, or whose religion lost them; vacations for people who can’t go on vacation; homes for folk without families; sanctuaries against aggression. They take sound and fabric and flesh from the ordinary world, and under cover of darkness and the influence of alcohol or drugs, transform it all into something that scrapes up against utopia.

anonymous asked:

Hi! I'm kind of shy but I really wanted to let you know I ADORE you and your body confidence! I still struggle with wearing 'opposite gender' clothing in public because I don't want to be miss-gendered or sexually stereotyped u_u Do you have any tips?

Okay umm, this is a big thing, so I’ll talk about my own experience for context, and then sort of get into tips by the end. 

So for me, I don’t really have any “opposite gender” clothing because my gender doesn’t even really have any clothing made for it. Being genderqueer, I have a preferred method of gender expression, and that’s mostly dresses and colourful things, and keeping my hair long. I’d also really like to start doing cosmetic stuff, but I don’t have any of that. Speaking of which, I actually don’t have nearly enough of any of those things except for my hair (I love my hair). But none of these things are opposite for me, in any way. So the fact that I have to dress primarily in masculine clothes is mostly that I don’t have much of a choice yet. And the thing is, I do worry about people misgendering me, and invalidating what I have already explained or “shown” people, but I really don’t have much choice. So I just do my best. 

My body has a lot of wonderful things about it, and I can wear whatever I want. I don’t blame my body for being anything that it is, and that’s good. But once again, all I can do is do my best, because people will say my body is “wrong.” They’ll assume things about me because of my body, that are not right. And yeah, it hurts, and it also makes me feel like less of a person sometimes. And when that happens, I never feel more like what people are judging me to be, I just feel less like a person, less of a human. So even if I don’t usually direct my frustrations towards my body, it can be very difficult.

When I have greater freedom over gender presentation, with more dresses, and more makeup, I don’t think I’ll worry as much about what people think, because at least they’ll get to think about what I am comfortable with them seeing. It’s not going to completely solve the problem - that won’t be something that can be solved until society stops being cissexist and bigoted. I can just do the best I can to live despite it. 

I guess that I should also talk about sexual stereotypes and how that plays in. I’m pansexual, and that means I’m down to be attracted to people regardless of their gender identity or expression. Being genderqueer, it’s personally near impossible for me to be annoyed at being “emasculated” - if people assume that my gender transgression doesn’t allow me to be attracted or attractive to feminine people or female, well then they haven’t paid very much attention to lesbians. Actually, that is a pretty good way for me to describe it - all my attraction to anyone of any gender is gay attraction. Males I’m attracted to? Gay for them. Female I’m attracted to? Gay for them. Nonbinary person I’m attracted to? I’m GAYYYYY for them. So for the most part, the sexual stereotypes that might be assigned to me just seem so absurd and silly in a lot of ways. Like I guess they’re bad???? but at the same time, any stereotyping I could imagine anyone doing just seems so ignorant - they assign things to me that might cause them to think less of me based on their poor understanding, but they’re all things that I’m proud of, based on what I know and who I am. 

So uh, now for tips on being confident while doing gender nonconforming things. 

  1. One time I was in a dress and somebody asked me if I had lost a bet. And so I said “No, fuck you.”  
    People sometimes see me wearing the clothes I’m comfortable with and that express my gender identity and imply that I must be feeling uncomfortable with them, and try and give me pity and sympathies. He thought he was being nice/friendly/reasonable by saying something that was super insulting. So in a situation like this, my advice is to respond by how it makes you feel. If you’re proud of what you’re wearing, take offence. Get angry. It’s not your responsibility to think to yourself “what if they meant well?" I’m sure he meant well - in fact, he even apologized to me when I bumped into him later that day, but that’s not the point. In fact, it made me feel even worse, because he honestly thought invalidating me was a good way to be nice, and hadn’t meant any harm by it.  It’s impossible to be proud and confident in what you’re wearing if you have to be apologetic all the fricken time. So don’t. If someone says something shitty to you, react the same tenacious way you would if their insensitivity wasn’t a question of gender noncomformity. 
  2. One time I got sexually harassed by this kid in 8th grade at my highschool. Like, he made jeering comments similar to what you might hear as part of the opening lines to a porno. It was pretty fucking inappropriate and hella rude. And it wasn’t my fault. I was ridiculously upset, and people said "oh, he’ll grow out of it.” But when the fuck did he grow into it. Anyway, if someone ever gives you shit like that, it’s not your fucking fault. People might show you really terrible sides, but when that happens, but never blame yourself. Do. not. blame. yourself. 
  3. Lastly, at the end of the last school year, I spent some time with a couple people I don’t usually spend time with, and they implied that they were under the impression that I was in dresses for attention. In fact, the head of the GSA thought that maybe it would be better if I toned things down as not to “scare off allies” (she knows why this is wrong now, but my goodness, that was a painful one). Anyway, I managed to explain to some people what was up, and some of them took it to heart, but many of them did not. Starting a new school year in university, I’ve had the opportunity to introduce myself as someone who is nonbinary, and who does wear dresses, so the people here didn’t have a half-decade to know me when I wasn’t as sure about these things, or about expressing myself, and when I was essentially in varying levels of the closet. I don’t know if I’m just in a more accepting group of people, or if a new start really makes such a big difference, but it made one for me. Anyway, all I can say from that though, is that people will judge you. Even knowing that it’s not your fault won’t fix everything for you. This doesn’t matter who you are, cis, trans*, fluid, if you do gender nonconforming things in a serious context, society’s bigotry will effect you in some way. 
    But it is never your fault, and I hope that you manage to find the best and most supportive people, that do not judge you for how you express yourself. 

Seriously though, why would people think bi or pan people are greedy? They lose more potential partners from biphobic people than they gain from gay people. 

Really, wouldn’t straight people be the greedy ones if we were going by potential partners? 

One thing I’ve realized is that when you decide to change the gender you present as, you have to build up a whole new set of self-esteem for that presentation, almost from scratch. 

Up until you actually start presenting your gender differently, you might have been so sure, and so confident about the decision, because you knew it would really makes you feel comfortable; because it’s who you are, and how you wanted to be treated. And maybe you’ve even been able to appear as the gender you’re comfortable with around friends, who were all wonderful and supportive.

But as soon as you make the leap, it seems intimidating and scary, and you start to get new doubts - even if you had none before. You know your doubts have nothing to do with your gender identity, but you’re afraid of how people will react. And if you don’t stop yourself for a moment every once in a while, just to think about it, it feels like you’re doubting how comfortable you feel with your identified gender altogether, and that’s really painful. It’s just a layer of doubt on things that are already confusing and sometimes terrifying. 

Living your life with the freedom to present as yourself shouldn’t be traumatic or cause doubt and worrying. 

Oh also, another thing to add onto that ask I answered with the wall of text, sometimes people will actually come and talk to you or say that they look up to you for ignoring prejudice and expressing yourself freely. And in a world where people like me aren’t “supposed” to exist, or are at least controversial at best, being there where people can see you existing can be really inspirational to people. I know that for me, I had people like that. 

  • Radio:If you look at the way the conversation has become easier than it has ever been before and people are talking more and more about trans-
  • Me:Yes, yes, come on!
  • Radio:portation and transit,
  • Me:Are you fucking kidding me!?
After three months of correcting my mother with my pronouns:
  • Mom:Do any of your classmates work there and get paid?
  • Me:Yeah, Joon works there
  • Mom:So she's a worker there?
  • Me:He. Joon is a boy.
  • Mom:Ahhh, okay sorry.
  • Me:You know, it'd be really nice if you could respond like that when I tell you to say they/xe instead of he for my pronouns
  • Mom:*laughs* But theys/xes don't exist
  • Me:Yeah, fuck you too
  • Mom:Oh yeah, that's sooo nice of you