Author Topic: Friends issues (pronouns and other annoying stuff)  (Read 516 times)

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Offline jossam

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Friends issues (pronouns and other annoying stuff)
« on: April 09, 2016, 09:50:15 pm »
Please, keep in mind this is a generalization and it applies to my case only!

I noticed my male friends (I have two of them whom I'm out to and they're both close friends) probably don't take me as seriously as my female friends. They're all cis. I don't know why I get this impression. One is openly gay and the other one I suspect he's gay but in the closet, but it's just my assumption based on things I observed. Well, the openly gay one once told me that I should seek lesbian women and date them. I obviously told him why this is a horrible idea for me and for them. Also I felt really invalidated and misgendered. I'm still pre-everything, but I don't think it matters, I'm still a guy no matter what my current body is. I act like one, I look like one, I don't think a lesbian would be interested in me, and I'd find it offensive if she was because I don't want my gender invalidated, and I don't want to be objectified because of single body bits! Besides, they're gonna be gone at some point in my life. I just find these "lesbian comments" very offensive. They invalidate me. I once told him and he kinda shrugged it off, saying I shouldn't get so offended, and that straight women wouldn't be interested in me (ha! so wrong!). He even referred to me as lesbian a few times, but he stopped doing this. I'm sorry, but I'm a (bisexual) trans guy, extremely different from being a cis gay. Gosh, and he's gay, it surprises me so much because he should know better!
But he acts confusing, because now he uses the right pronouns and also flirts with me and makes sexual comments (we've kinda always been attracted to each other sexually). It's just that he gives off a bad vibe sometimes, I don't know how to explain, it's like he doesn't really take me seriously deep inside or might even enjoy making me feel bad (I do notice sadistic traits in him). It took a lot to explain to him what my situation is. It now looks like he understood, but I can't help having doubts. But he's gay and he does things that make me think he's attracted to me. It all just sounds confusing. Anyway, I don't care because now I have a girlfriend....cis and straight! I feel sorry for him , I proved him wrong  ;D 

My other male friend never used and never uses the right pronouns, despite the fact I use them around him to refer to myself, and he knows I'm trans and all. But it's not just a pronoun issue. It's like he treats me as he'd treat a woman. I don't go out with him that much, but I don't see him hugging and kissing his cis male friends a certain way....the way he greets me is the same way he greets his cis female friends, and it bothers me. I also remember how he always wanted to cuddle with me. Again, it's weird, because I don't see him doing that with his cis male friends. Sometimes I agreed to cuddle just to feel close to someone, but it kinda felt weird. I don't like cuddling with friends in general, I'm not a cuddly and social person. I'm not the macho type of guy who labels everything as gay either. I'd find it offensive and homophobic, plus, I'm bisexual so I'm "in part gay" so it'd be counterproductive. But I'm not a feminine guy either, so the cuddles thing just looks weird if I do it with a guy friend. And I don't do it with female friends either. I'd only cuddle my girlfriend.
But he's confusing too because sometimes he talks to me and says "look, I need some advice from a male friend".
Funny thing, he once asked me if he could talk to me about a "guys issue". I said sure, why not? But guess what? He asked me something about penises! I tried to answer the best way I could because I'm not totally clueless about penises, but it just sounded weird because I don't have one....well, at least...not yet. So, it made no sense to ask me  ???  did he just want to sound nice, or maybe he didn't have any cis male friend he wanted to talk to about it, because he feels more comfortable around me? I don't know. It was hilarious though.

Does all of this bother me? It depends. I'm getting colder and colder everyday, and detached from people (true personality coming out!). I just don't want others to disrespect me though.

Offline arice

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Re: Friends issues (pronouns and other annoying stuff)
« Reply #1 on: April 09, 2016, 11:30:46 pm »
It would make me angry as heck. I suffer from social dysphoria more than anything else. Pronouns don't necessarily bother me but being treated as a woman by people who know better does. I have tended to do well with straight cis guys treating me like a guy no matter how I'm presenting. I act like a guy so they accept me as one. I have had fewer gay male friends and I find that they have a harder time treating me as a guy.
Straight women usually try to treat me as one of them but then things get awkward because I don't understand them and don't act like them. There are exceptions to that but I usually only do well with women who are used to being friends with men.
My relationships with lesbians have been more varied but ultimately have included the most hurtful interactions. When I came out as a guy to my closest lesbian friend some years ago, she said that I couldn't be a guy because she didn't like men. I am still good friends with her wife but I am no longer close to her.
For reference, I consider myself a guy who happens to be female or a masculine of centre AFAB non-binary. In an ideal world, my female body wouldn't stop me from being treated as a guy and while I would still want to cut off my breasts, I wouldn't need any further transition. I am attracted to men and have been with a "straight" cis man for 17 years. He sees me as a guy who happens to have a feminine body and fully admits to appreciating both. It seems like when I start to worry that he is seeing me as a woman, he tends to make some a comment reinforcing the fact that he sees me as a guy and appreciates it. So far, we have managed to work through our issues and he would fully support me getting top surgery.

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Offline invisiblemonsters

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Re: Friends issues (pronouns and other annoying stuff)
« Reply #2 on: April 10, 2016, 05:36:01 am »
when people think you are just a "butch lesbian" that is incredibly hurtful. lesbians like women, we are not women. suggesting that invalidates our identity and theirs imo.

as for the other stuff, you would hope gay people would understand about our situation, how we value our identities and whatever but some don't. why? because although they are part of the LGBT+ community and understand what it is like to be in the closet, i don't feel as if they know what it is like to have their identity invalid sometimes. when someone hears some super macho dude is gay, they are in denial, sure, but then they come to terms with it and it is much easier to accept and "pick up" on things that make them "seem gay." for us though, the only time that happens is when someone (or we) out ourselves to someone if we are stealth, then they start looking for things to "pick up" one that we weren't born male/female. it is a completely different thing and much more harmful i think because people won't say someone like that is "deceiving" them, but they will say that about us, putting us at risk.

now my main point is people cannot just choose when and how to accept your identity. they either do, don't, or are at least trying to. to me, your second friend the most, only does it when he wants to. that isn't how this works. you need to be more assertive with him because if you let him do the things he does to his female with you, he will think your identity is a joke and that you're okay with him treating you basically like a woman (and when that happens, people will think how can you be a man if you/we/whatever did/do x y and z? again, trying to test how we identify and invalidate us). the second you stop letting others treat you in a female way, the sooner they understand that you're serious. even if you tell them you are, there will be things you need to put your foot down for, this is one of them imo. all in all, i feel the things your friends have done are super offensive because they are trying to undermine your identity i feel like. the little jabs, the little actions to invalidate you. all you can do is be firm and be honest.

Offline Paul Muad-Dib

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Re: Friends issues (pronouns and other annoying stuff)
« Reply #3 on: April 10, 2016, 07:05:22 am »
Some male gay folks I know were the least accepting of my condition when I came out. It took time and I still don't think one of them takes trans people all that seriously. According to him it's because "he's seen the results and the results are tragic." I responded that we're all pretty tragic, directed at him (he himself has a history of suicide attempts and drug binging and can't exactly laugh at anybody else).

The fact the guy thinks you should seek lesbians pretty much sums it up - a lesbian doesn't want a man, nor does a man have a lesbian lover. Does not sound as if you are being viewed as male yet.

What I try to remember is that a few of the gay men I know tend to have their own issues and guilts to deal with and are less flexible than some others I know. Some of them have issues with women - the ones I know of because women abused them - so, it's not strange to see them maintain a distance and view women as different. If they once saw me as a female I know it's gonna take time to undo that image and we've known each other a long time. That said these are your friends and if you feel as if they are crossing the line of decency and civility tell them about it.
"If the freedom of speech is taken away, then dumb and silent we may be led, like sheep to the slaughter."