I take queer to mean anything other than strictly heterosexual (with emphasis on strictly), but this word means different things for each person, so to clarify, this is my meaning and my identity. (Never forget, this blog is about me, me, me). Queer just means strange, different, other, and the majority of everyday occurences remind me of how strange I am, how other I feel, and how different everyone perceives me to be. Anybody can be queer.
If you feel queer, if you want to be queer, then you are queer. Welcome.
If you don’t feel queer, and you’re reading this, you might want to think again…
Asexuality is defined as not experiencing sexual attraction towards other people (or things!). For someone who is asexual, it’s slap-in-the-forehead obvious what it means. Even those who are questioning their asexuality, it’s clear that it’s a possibility for them or for others.
But for sexual people, this concept seems ungraspable. It’s like struggling to understand why the earth is round when you first learn about it, and you must continually remind yourself that it is, no matter how much you can’t see it or feel it. For those select few that do feel the earth is round (I haven’t met any yet), explaining it to the rest of world is quite a daunting task, and more daunting is having them actually, truly understand it.
For me, this has always been self evident, even before I consciously learned what transgender was. And I don’t mean in the sense that as a toddler I continually insisted I had been born in the wrong body, as is stereotypically believed (although I did, but that later waned), it simply means I’ve always known that the distress I felt about my assigned gender was not something I was supposed to feel, it was not something others felt. As an analytical adult (only in age, but not in spirit), I came to realize that there is a term for this.
However, most people never even question their assigned gender: their body is male, therefore they are male. Some people “get” the concept of transgendered people, in a very limited way, when explained within a strict binary: my mind is the opposite gender of my body, just like your mind is the same gender as your body. But stray away from this thin line and people get confused: how is it possible you don’t feel either, or you feel both, or you feel kind of one and kind of the other but not really? It truly is a mind-boggling concept if you think about it: how come you feel like a duck, but you want fur, no beak, and still have webbed feet? You’re just a duck! Impossible!
The realization that I am transgender took some time to simmer before it was fully cooked, so even though I feel as strongly on this point as my asexuality, it was not so slap-in-the-face obvious for me at first. Most likely this late embrace is because I am neutrois, a somewhat esoteric form of the transgender umbrella. So as I toyed around with the idea of being transgender it didn’t really fit, as much as it looked like it could have, as much as I wanted it to, and as much as I envied others who were. It was like trying on a pair of jeans that look so cool, look so good on others, and you just really want to get them, but they don’t fit. Everybody’s wearing the same jeans though, so it’s either that or bland sweatpants, take your pick. How could I have known there are so many other types of jeans? It took audacity to find places that offered this variation, and the courage to go in and explore.
Don’t even try to explain this to anyone else though. Even within the transgender community there is ample debate and confusion and sadly even some shunning around the topic of being neutrois, genderqueer, or any other non-binary transgender identity.
Bonus feature: why I’m writing this blog
So those are some reasons for writing this blog. Through personal exposition I hope to achieve a little bit more understanding. So that I, you, or they (other people) can come away knowing something more than what you started with, and even, (with a remote glimmer of hope) make you feel the roundness of the earth, coming to complete comprehension.