When I first read the original post, I was too tired (and hungry) to deal with it on any level other than to register deep emotional pain. The responses below are basically spot-on and help give voice to my feelings.
Hoo boy, here we go.
I identify as a female. I was born with a vagina. When I hit puberty, I got my period. In all outwards terms, I am a cisgendered, completely un-trans* human being and outwardly dress that way. I love skirts. I love dresses. I wear high heels more than flats, normally. I’m slowly changing my wardrobe to be more and more 40’s, pin-up oriented.
So you are FAAB, identify as female, and present in a way that is socially constructed as feminine. Noted.
So where the fuck do I get off on being called genderqueer, then?
Good question. Do you experience any sort of dissonance with your assigned gender? Anything?
I’m sometimes ashamed to put this name on myself because it’s often times hard for me to explain to other people.
I have known several people who are bigendered, transgendered, transsexual. I have held my best friend while he was still coming to terms with not being a ‘she’. I have listened to the dysphoria time and time again at his inability to be a ‘true man’ without having to spend half of his life’s savings.
So… if you know that trans* people have dissonance with their assigned genders, and you don’t feel dissonance…
I don’t have that struggle. I am content in my body (well, for the most part— I’m content with my genitalia and boobs, let’s put it that way) and I don’t have to correct people when they say a third-person pronoun because. Well, I identify as a ‘she’.
So let me get this straight… you are completely, 100% comfortable identifying as female? Is that what you’re trying to say?
So why am I genderqueer?
I really hope you’ll provide me with an answer to this question. I’m beginning to think you won’t.
In a perfect world, there wouldn’t be gender. I know that gender dysphoria is a very real and very prominent thing, but sometimes I think…
Sometimes I think the concept of a ‘him’ and a ‘her’ is something that doesn’t exist. What makes me a girl? I like pretty things? That’s somehow more ‘feminine’ than, I don’t know, hunting?
What makes you a girl is that you identify as a girl. You don’t have to fit society’s construction of what girls are “supposed” to do to be a girl, and just because you do fit that construction doesn’t necessarily make you a girl, if you don’t feel like you are one.
I’ve heard all the bullshit arguments against my theories. “Traditionally, males hunted and women gathered”. Mmm. I’m sure you’ve looked hard into those species where the females actually do all the work where the men stay at home— no? Oh, we’re going on humanity alone, then, because the biological spectrum doesn’t collude at any point? Okay, then I’m sure you’re well-versed in matriarchal societies and those that break outside of your societal ‘tradition’.
Ok, good job breaking down an argument that no one made.
Yes, in most of the tribes of old you hear of, men hunted and women gathered but not because they were ‘girls’ and ‘boys’. Women stayed at home because do you know how fucking hard it is to hunt when you’re pregnant? Often times we are not told of the women who were sterile or who were not married who chose to hunt as well, but they existed just as well as the men who gathered did.
Not sure what relevance this has.
That’s because gender is a fairly new phenomena. Christ alive, people. Most species of birds have it backwards— male birds are often times the ones with the more prominent colours because they have to attract females, whose feathers are often duller. Does this make the male birds feminine? No. It’s a fucking biological adaptation to promote mating. Simply put— you’re not a pretty male? You’re probably not going to pass on the family line.
What does this have to do with… anything. Um male birds don’t conform to human society’s notions of masculinity? Good for them?
When I say ‘new’, I don’t mean in the human spectrum. I mean in the spectrum of time, period. Gender is a societal fallacy, a great hoax that will continue to haunt us all. Yes, I know this sounds ‘conspiracy theory’-esque, but think about it. How many times in your life have you heard the term “tomboy” or “girly girl”? How many times have you seen those posts that say “most girls wear dresses but I wear jeans and hoodies so I’m special”? How many times have you heard gay men described as “effeminate”?
These are great points to make towards eliminating constructions of what society views as male/female and for ending girl-on-girl hate, but none of it proves that gender doesn’t exist. Gender is very very real for some of us thankyouverymuch. Even if gender is absolutely 100% socially constructed and never ever something inherent in a person’s mind (something of which I am not and probably never will be convinced), socially constructed is still not the same as nonexistent.
When a man is a jerk, he is a “dick”. When a woman is truthful or unabashed, she is a “bitch” or even the c-word. When we were little, we used to sing “boys go to Jupiter to get more stupider, girls go to Mars to get more candy bars”. Women are from Venus and men are from Mars. The list goes on. There’s this separation of genders that exists because society put it there.
What you’re pointing out here is that society thinks a lot of things that are not true about the difference between men and women (and other genders, but society thinks they don’t exist). I’ll let you in on a little secret. The real difference between men and women and a person of non-binary gender:
A man is someone who identifies as a man.
A woman is someone who identifies as a woman.
A genderqueer person is someone who identifies as genderqueer.
And so on. Amazing how that works, isn’t it!
Imagine the world without these stereotypes. Would you know what a “girl” was supposed to be simply by her genitals? I have the ability to get pregnant and ovaries and a vagina. Big fucking deal. That doesn’t shape my personality (except on the PMS-y occasions). Just because I have a vagina doesn’t mean I have this innate sensibility to “sit at home and raise a family”. Just because I wear dresses and high heels doesn’t mean I am a ‘girl’.
No, none of that means you’re a girl.
What makes you a girl is that you identify as a girl.
Girls don’t exist. Boys don’t exist. People exist.
Uh. I do exist, actually, thanks.
People are vast and complex and weird and do things that are outside of the norm of what society thinks despite their genitalia and guess what? Sometimes women dress like women are supposed to and sometimes men dress like men are supposed to and sometimes they do the exact fucking opposite of that.
Yep. And none of that disproves that gender exists.
You know why? Because sex is a biological function, not a determinant of personality.
You’re right! Sex is not the same as gender! Hooray! But gender. Does. Exist. I can attest to that. I’ve had to fight tooth and nail to be recognized as the gender I am. By proposing that gender doesn’t exist, you are telling me that I am wrong about my identity and that I fought for so long for nothing. What the fuck made you think that was okay?
So yeah. Okay. Call me “her”, because I am one. Call me a girly girl, because according to the stereotype, I fit into it. I’m cisgendered. Big fucking deal.
You’re not a girl because you fit the stereotype of what girls are. You are a girl if you identify as a girl. Just like with every other fucking gender.
I’m genderqueer because I don’t see the fucking point of gender.
Excuse you? You don’t see the point of gender, fine. But guess what. It exists, whether you see the “point” of it or not. I have a gender. Loads of other people have genders. Some people have more than one gender. Some people have no gender at all, and maybe you’re one of those people. But having no gender yourself doesn’t mean you get to come in here and tell us that all our identities are false. That’s not how it works.
And I can’t even deal with how appropriative your use of the word “genderqueer” is. You do know that queer is a very real gender for some people, right? Genderqueer people fucking exist, and it’s not because “gender doesn’t exist.” It’s because their gender is something other than male or female. You are twisting that word to mean something else, for your own purposes as a cis person, and that is not in any way cool. Stop it.
This is appropriative and it sucks. I am genderqueer, a real live actual gender. I don’t like seeing someone else take that word and hurt other people with it. Gender is an identity, not a weapon.