Do I Need To Define My Gender?

I’ve been puzzling over gender recently. I think I have some understanding of transgender because it implies a sense of crossing from one side to the other but what then is genderqueer?

This post explains one person’s thoughts and they’re beautifully expressed but have left me feeling confused. Is genderqueer just “other but not other enough”?

I’ve never liked dividing the world up by gender but that’s just because it results in a world where I don’t fit.
I mean I’m female, genetically and physically (you’ve seen the pictures) and I’m happy with my womanly curves; but I don’t fit the socially ideal image of woman.
Sure I like sex with men, but aside from enjoying a nice cock I also love strapping on my own and fucking my Boy. Where does that leave me?

I’m not really interested in makeup or girly things. Growing up I was often ‘one of the boys’ because the things I enjoyed doing were male dominated but I felt accepted as such.
Adults seem less flexible than teenagers though.

I want to be treated as a person, respected and engaged. Not categorised or dismissed because I happen to have breasts. I resent being treated differently because of my genitalia. I don’t want anyone to assume they know my interests or preferences, not least because you’ll probably guess wrong.

Yet despite identifying with many of the points Aerie made I don’t, at the moment, feel able to claim the label ‘genderqueer’ for myself. That to me implies admitting that who I am is not a normal woman, whereas I feel content that biology makes me female but that society should stop trying to limit me because of it.
And that should surely be true for all people, no matter what gender they claim, or even if they would prefer not to claim one at all.

Don’t Call Me ‘Cis’

Now I realise that this post is going to offend some people but quite honestly, it’s a rant and it’s my blog and my point of view so here goes.

Now recently my twitter timeline has filled up with people talking about (and mostly re-tweeting other people) over the use of the word ‘cis’. I realised at some point that I was finding this whole thing slightly annoying and that’s when I realised my first point.

I don’t like the way the word sounds.
It really is that simple. It’s a horrid word, full of sibilance and malice. The first time I encountered it I had no idea what it meant I merely got the impression that one party was calling the other a nasty name and that impression has stuck. It doesn’t help that it sounds like “sissy” which is also a nasty thing to call someone (in fact I think the context of that first encounter encouraged the mental association between those two words). So let’s be clear, you may mean ‘cis’ in a wonderfully neutral, friendly way but that doesn’t mean it’s the way someone will hear it and you can’t easily change that.

Using the full cisgender or cissexual* does sound slightly better not least because it explains the meaning a little. I’m also the kind of person who made the effort to look the word up and find out it’s derivation which at least proves that it wasn’t originally meant to sound insulting.

So we have a word which basically means ‘not-transsexual’, that’s fine, I’m still not going to use it.

At this point the extremists will start spouting about ‘privilege’ and ‘invisibility’ and stuff like that. But here’s how I see it.

There are perfectly good words to describe ones sexuality (heterosexual, homosexual and bisexual) however most of the time most people don’t need to use them. I’m heterosexual. I generally don’t need to tell anyone that because a) it probably isn’t relevant, b) if I go on talking about my male partners long enough you’ll probably work it out and c) if you make an assumption it’s likely to be the correct one. Is that privilege? To me it’s mathematics.

To take a non sexual example. I’m left-handed. I am likely to tell more people that because it is part of how I perceive my identity (not all left-handers would feel like this) and it’s likely to be useful (for instance at a Chinese restaurant to prevent chopstick clashing). I don’t expect right-handers to do the same, because there is a default. Most people are right handed. It is linguistically convenient that a word exists for right-handedness but saying not-left-handed on the occasions the subject comes up would actually suffice.

I’m also glad that the world acknowledges my handedness and provides conveniences to make my life easier (like the ability to swap the use of mouse buttons over) however I’m also happy that the default is that it is set for right-handers (because there are more of them).

Now I’m also aware that unless you’re a fat black disabled transsexual lesbian these days you’re not allowed an opinion on anything but really people get a grip. The world has a default, get used to it. Sure, you have a right not to be discriminated against because you’re in a minority and nobody should be horrid to you because of who you are but stop with the name calling.

Let people describe themselves how they want. Even if that means not describing themselves. Sometimes that’s better.

*Yes, logically those two words are slightly different but the distinction isn’t important here.