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My queer identity

February 9, 2009

I used to identify as a lesbian. A die-hard, no-man-will-ever-touch-me dyke. However, when I started seeing myself as a boy, my attractions shifted: I began seeing the beauty in male bodies, and now I hardly even look at women. At first, I thought it might be confusion; maybe I didn’t desire a male body for my partner, but for myself (the do-be-do-be-do complex!).

I don’t think that’s likely, though. I can totally picture myself going out with a man now that I’m a transman myself. Back when I identified as a lesbian, I couldn’t have pictured that. I could not see myself, as a woman, going out with a man. Now… ohh darn, men are gorgeous.

I can see myself going out with people of any sex or gender identification. I’m most attracted to people whose gender lies between androgynous and masculine, but within that, I think I’d be willing to date men, women, genderqueers or others; and I could be attracted to a femme person, eventually.

Does that mean I’m bisexual? I don’t like that word; it implies that there are only two sexes; or maybe two genders? In any case, there are way more than two. I prefer “queer”. Even if I turn out to be only attracted to men, I’d prefer queer over “gay” or “fag” or the even more inaccurate “homosexual” because I don’t identify completely with the gender binary (transfag would work, though). S. Bear Bergman put it best:

At the base, the current terms of sexual orientation that the language offers (hetero, homo, bi) are problematic because they rely on a bipolar gendered system that is coming apart at the seams even as we fuck. In order to identify myself as a heterosexual, I first have to be able to identify in some sort of concrete way what my own gender is, and then decide whether it has an opposite, which still does not, in the strictest sense, fulfill the definition of heterosexual because hetero isn’t Greek for “opposite,” it’s Greek for “other”. So as long as I’m attracted to people of a different gender than I am, I am heterosexual, except that in this language that’s really just one other and also I might be attracted to someone who is the same sex but a different gender, and so I as a butch could therefore be attracted to femmes and call myself heterosexual under that definition (…).

Queer doesn’t assume any gender, or any sexual behavior, only a certain disregard for social norms regarding gendered and sexual behavior. That’s a sexual orientation that may wear better, whatever changes the next hundred years may bring.

5 Comments leave one →
  1. eBomb permalink
    February 9, 2009 2:01 pm

    as a queer transguy, i appreciate this article. thank you!

  2. February 9, 2009 4:34 pm

    I think the do-be-do-be-do concept is fascinating. I wonder if it works both ways:
    [1. I’m attracted to/desire someone because I want to be like them
    2. I want to be like someone because I’m attracted to/desire them]

    I know what it’s like to be attracted to someone because I admire him and aspire to be like him. But I also wonder sometimes if I only want a male body because I am attracted to men and would like to be somewhat autosexual. Which is not the case, but that being the answer for why I’m trans flits across my mind occasionally.

    I also think queer is a better word than ‘bisexual’ but it’s more liable to be interpreted as ‘gay’ than ‘pansexual’ by the average straight person.

  3. February 10, 2009 2:07 am

    I feel as though I could have written this (except, y’know, not as well). When I identified as a girl, even though I found the male body attractive I had trouble seeing myself as the girl in a heterosexual relationship. As I came to accept myself as a guy, though, the prospect of being involved with a male as a guy seemed attractive.

    I identify as a queer transguy as well and while I don’t have enough experience to know if I could be romantically involved with a male, I’m definitely open to being physically involved with one.

  4. February 10, 2009 3:20 am

    The things is, I was a diehard straight girl! I think it’s ironic… And even when I started liking girls I clung to my “straight” label, because I hated the word “bisexual.” Even now, I shy from the label “bisexual” or even “pansexual” and just say that I’m a transfag, because that implies so much more. And then I still date girls, because really, identity isn’t so important to me now.

  5. genderkid permalink*
    February 11, 2009 7:25 pm

    You’re welcome, eBomb; thank you!

    And thanks for all your comments, guys: I love to read about other people’s experiences =)

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