If Only…

Someone wrote…

“I think today I realized that I am just a girly man inside this female bodied figure of mine. Now if only people would talk to me about T and not get freaked out when I ask them questions about it.”

What’s your experience?

And what are you thinking about gender right now?

Posted by on October 3rd, 2011 at 08:00 am

Category: your voice 11 comments »

11 Responses to “If Only…”

  1. radical/rebel

    what is all this “realizing I’m a man” that I read about? how does one realize that one is a man? what is a man and how can one say that one feels like that?

    my queer hope for what gender will turn out to be is that someday we’ll wake up and all realize what we are is only and ultimately ourselves, and then the way we approach gender after that will be with the understanding that it’s a limited and limiting thing that we should only take as seriously as we take other things that we build to reflect who we are, underneath the artifice.


    Anonymous replied:

    You should not forget that while you hold that belief there are people who genuinely identify with a part of the gender spectrum. And while you might not understand them — rather, us– , please don’t diminish our experience.


    radical/rebel replied:

    in the struggle to make us all more free, I want to advocate that everyone deserves to be respected for being exactly who they are, and at the same time consistently challenge that there is any such thing as “being a man,” “being a woman,” “being masculine,” or “being feminine.”

    all the blinders we put up around gender/sex/sexuality do is make us more blind.

    in short: Kate Bornstein, Gender Outlaw. fin.


    Oliver Leon replied:

    Hey radical/rebel.

    I agree that it is definitely important to challenge what folks consider masculinity, femininity, and sexuality to be and how we can collectively become more inclusive rather than exclusive. At the same time, I think we need to remember to lovingly acknowledge that there are folks who are comfortable inside the gender binary.
    I do think that society’s consciousness needs to be raised, in the sense that gender is not oppositional but more like… paint splatters everywhere of a variety of colours.
    Also, Kate Bornstein? She is my hero! Have you heard that she has an autobiography coming out called ‘A Queer and Pleasant Danger’?

    In love and solidarity,
    Oliver Leon

    Theo replied:

    Why can’t we have gendered descriptions as long as we extricate them from any association with bodies? In general, I think it’s better to create an infinite number of terms to describe very specific things about oneself and stack them up than to erase all terminology and leave people without a way to define themselves. If the eradication of all terms in pursuit of total equality were possible, I would support that. However, I think we need to build up first before we break down.

    Second, using gendered terms doesn’t mean we operate within a binary. Claiming this process is inherently codependent takes away the possibility for people to use accurate gendered terms to describe themselves outside a binary. I’m a faggy somewhat femme dapper genderqueer transman. I can almost guarantee that when someone reads “faggy” they automatically think “femmey gay cisman” and associate all of those body & sexuality connotations with me. Yet, I would argue that “faggy” is as much a gender presentation form as “dyke” or “butch” or “femme” and not necessarily tied to bodies or sexualities, and yet it still accurately describes me. I don’t have sex with trans* or cismen because I’ve discovered I am not attracted to them, yet the gender presentation associated with “faggy” is something I really identify with.

    Expand everything.

    radical/rebel replied:

    hey oliver

    I don’t think I’ve said anything without love, and if an attack was perceived, that’s a reflection of how people read my comments, and that’s their own trip. I won’t repeat what I’ve been trying to say because I think it’s really hard to talk on the internet, when you’re not really talking “to” anyone but only at them.

    I hardly find anything in yr comments that relates to what oliver and I said. I also consider “fag” and “dyke” genders (along with “hipster,” “jock,” “David Bowie,” etc.). just that it’s a CONSTRUCT only MEANINGFUL insofar as WE GIVE IT MEANING.

    again, oliver
    yes I knew about the autobiography/can’t wait to read it/Gender Outlaws (2010, the anthology) is also a hugely incredible text.

    peace love and queerness y’all

    Oliver Leon replied:

    Hey radical/rebel,

    You’re right, it’s really hard to perceive intention on the internet. Sorry for reading into your thoughts a little too much/the wrong way.

    Yes, Gender Outlaws (2010) is super amazing. I’ve underlined so many sentences.

    Hi Theo,

    I agree that the concept of gender identities definitely ought to be expanded and challenged. I am a trans man too, of the gentle-man and faggot variety (both in terms of presentation and sexuality).

    I will confess to be at a loss as to if we are debating or just lovingly talking about how we would all love for gender to be this beautiful broad queerful trans*-tastic celebration. I tend to have a difficulty unpacking intent when it comes to written text. At the same time, it could be my defensiveness that always comes up whenever I discuss gender. Oh well.

    Keep on keeping on!

  2. Regen

    This state of being a girly man is such a confusing one for the outside world, isn’t it? When they see a male-bodied girly man, they understand that’s what he is but still reject him. And when they see a female-bodied girly man, they either assume he’s cis-gendered or a lesbian or just confused. It makes me sad :(


  3. Cameron

    Who’re these people not talking to you about T? That’s silly. I’ll totally talk to you about T (I’m approximately a trans boi who’s on T). Yeah. :)


  4. Oliver Leon

    Hey there! I am also a girly trans man. Effeminate, femme, what have you. I’m on Tumblr (linked in my name) and on Twitter– @inkwrite. I am starting T in less than a month and would be happy to answer any questions you have!


  5. Mike

    I’m an effete non-op-but-generally-male-identifying queer. I’m not on T, but I spent a substantial part of life researching T and the ‘pathway’ (as defined by nhs) so if you want to talk about it I may not be up to date but am happy to chat along.


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