Posts Tagged ‘transgender’

Charlie of the LGBTA…

What is the “Q” in LGBTQ?

Good question! It means questioning. By writing you are now Q. Welcome to the club. Personally, I often accidentally say LGBTA because I live in Boston and I ride on the MBTA. There is no Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual Transit Authority though—did he ever bareback, no he never barebacked and his fate is still unlearned.

I originally thought that the “Q” meant “queer” as some folks use that word as opposed to the L, G, B, or T and it can mean that. Actually, the T can also mean transexual, transgender, or two-spirited. So this leads to another question. Is the queer community slowly but surely taking over the alphabet? Yes. Soon the whole alphabet will be queer. And once we own language then we will call things whatever we want. Is it marriage? Well let’s just check. Are all of the letters in the word marriage gay? Yes, they are so I suppose that it is a gay marriage. We are a tricky bunch. While I was writing this I also made the letter “Z” gay. Sorry straight folks, you are going to either going to have to accept the new lexicon or go learn the cyrillic alphabet. I would offer you the greek alphabet but that has been gay for centuries. Greeks have an entire island of lesbians. Much to their chagrin.

Language is difficult to keep track of. As soon as I left my teens, I ceased to be able to use any new slang without immediately making it a little less cool. I try to not let that stop me, peeps. To suck even more cool from that word, I just pulled it from the HowStuffWorks site under, “Slang terms by decade”. Anyway, now you can define yourself as questioning, whereas back in the day, you weren’t questioning, you were on anti-depressants and hopelessly in the closet. Then bisexual. Then gay. Questioning sounds much more laid back.

UPDATE!

I learn more every day. So now it’s apparently, LGBTAAAQQ. Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Trans, Allies, Andro, Asexual, Queer, and Questioning. Seriously alphabet. We’re coming for you.

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That’s What Sie Said.

As promised in an earlier post…

Now it’s time for Fun with Gender Neutral Pronouns!!

I am really tolerant, trust me, and yet for some reason I have a hard time incorporating gender neutral pronouns into my language. I seldom take the politically correct high road and ask the question of a new group of people, “which gender pronouns would you all like to use?” (Although that would be a GREAT ice breaker at parties.) I do however, believe that language is important and how a society refers to different groups and individuals often reflects the value that groups are given within that society. Women used to be referred to using diminutive terms and that reflected how women were viewed. Of course arguments can be made that even after language changes we still have a long way to go. So while I continue to piss off the gender free linguists of the world, let’s talk pronouns.

My first round of searches made me think I should go a little lighter on myself regarding my PC nature. One page started with the question of why people are resistant to gender-neutral pronouns and then the next sentence was, “rather than try to give a single compact answer here, i decided to write a long multifaceted thing resembling a Usenet thread.” It was indeed long and I gave in. There weren’t even any graphics. I was simultaneously being asked to move into the future by changing my language and read something that seemed like I pulled it off of ARPANET. I got as far as reading about how even capitalizing “I” was a bit offensive and I fled.

So the first thing I learned was that if you want me to start using your neologisms then you need to make some pop songs, sitcoms, fancy web sites, and youtube videos. This is where I learn new language from. Hello, “bling”? So get on that.

I then stumbled upon something called “Spivak” pronouns. Immediately after that I went to IMDB because I thought that Spivak might have been Sean Penn’s name in “Fast Times at Ridgemont High”. It was Spicoli. I think that Spivak might make a good insult. “Way to go Spivak.” Until that catches on, Spivak pronouns will make you sound Cockney. “E was selling matches in London, when ey decided to take eir in and teach eir proper English. Ey enjoyed eirselves quite a bit.” Michael Spivak, a mathematician and author wrote about these forms. He wrote such books as, “The Joy of TeX” and “The Hitchhiker’s Guide to Calculus”. These pronouns have caught on some in the virtual gaming world. Which reminds me that at some point in the future I would like to take on the question of how gay you are if you are straight in real life but gay in second life.

Another construct is to use “ze/sie” and “hir” to replace “he/she” and “him/her”. My first encounter with using these words happened while talking with someone who was gender queer (neither identifying as male or female). I went in with a great deal of hope that I would change my speech seamlessly and leave patting myself on the back for my free to be you and me spirit. Unfortunately, my tolerance tends decrease each time someone tells you they are a vegan and absolutely plummets when someone uses the word, “lover” seriously. So that encounter was ill-fated. I was inclined to learn more though which is good. This site does a good run-down of different gender identities some of which would call on your gender-neutral pronoun usage skillz. It also introduces something I didn’t know about, the “Two Spirit”, a Native American person who embodies both masculine and feminine genders. Would you have to take their picture twice to steal their soul or are they intertwined? So many questions, so many offensive questions. Which leads me to this.

Tolerance and understanding are key. It is really important to keep an open mind and as quoted by Henry James, “Three things in human life are important: the first is to be kind, the second is to be kind, and the third is to be kind.” I believe it is also a good idea to try and start difficult conversations by finding out what we have in common and then go from there instead of the all at once method. If I wanted to tell my mother that was dating an alien, I might start off by talking to her about how much we both like stargazing. This would give her time to process my intergalactic relationship (I am not dating an alien). We need to give people time to process and accept that people do it at different rates and in different ways. Now I am off to go find a gender-neutral pal willing to share a bowl of bacon with me while we discuss my Two Spirit questions.

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A Peg Above the Rest

Is being gay more about being a gender bender?  As someone who as always considered herself straight, because I am only attracted to men for long term relationships, I find myself attracted to gay men and seeing myself as a gay man.  The activities gay men partake of together is what I would like to experience with my male significant other.  Does being female and wanting to “stick it” to my boyfriend and feel like a gay male with him make me gay?  I love fashion, being a diva, and find myself more and more distanced from identifying as a female and more as a gay male.  I have also dated several bi-sexual men for this reason.

There is a lot to take on here. Whenever that’s true I think that it is always best to start with pegging. I believe that is what you are referring to when you say you want to “stick it” to your boyfriend. For those who think it is strange that I am trying to answer this question by talking about cribbage scoring, let me clarify. Pegging is when you use a strap-on to have anal sex with someone. I think that straight women should make a note of this and if your boyfriend ever asks you to have anal sex don’t hesitate to pull it out and say, “me first!” Okay, let’s get back to the question.

Being gay is not about being a gender bender any more than being straight is about being a gender bender. Both terms (gay and straight) are really just simplifications to help in categorization. You might ask someone if they want tea or coffee and they can answer one or the other but by the time you get to the kitchen you will realize that you really don’t have enough information to bring them something they will want and will probably have to go back and ask some more questions. So let’s start with technical terms. And I would like a black coffee, preferably dark roast.

As opposed to using the terms “gay” and “straight” which are essentially slang, let’s get all etymological. From the Greek and Latin, “Homosexual” means two people of the same sex having sex. Also Greek and Latin, “Heterosexual” is two people of the opposite sex having sex. These words are pretty much concerned with what’s in your pants and what is in the pants of the person you are getting naked with. Then we get into what’s in your brain. Gender identity is what you consider yourself and how you refer to yourself. This can be male, female, neither or both (I’ll talk gender neutral pronouns later in another fun-packed word origin post). Then there is gender role which is how you exhibit your gender in society and with others and is influenced by the societal and cultural norms that you have been raised with. So with all of these things coming into play we can get a great amount of variety and range. This is before we even begin to touch on what you like to do in bed which can open up a whole other realm of variation, for example furriesvf1 thumb A Peg Above the Rest
furries
. Thank you internet.

So you have lady parts, you say that you are beginning to identify less as a female and more as a gay male now, you enjoy exhibiting the behaviors associated with being a gay man, and you feel most comfortable dating and sleeping with gay men or bisexual men. That is one way that sexuality, gender identity and gender role can come together. As to whether that makes you gay,  technically if you identify as a gay man and sleep with gay or bisexual men then tada! You’re gay! And welcome. However, if you identify as a female who is a diva fashionista and you dig bisexual men who are into you pegging them then that doesn’t necessarily make you gay. It just makes you awesome and interesting to talk to at parties. The most important thing is figuring yourself out and accepting and becoming happy with whatever you are. Unless you live in the south or mid-west, then the most important thing probably will be moving and the second most important thing will be self-acceptance.

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