Author Topic: When were you certain you were non-binary?  (Read 374 times)

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Offline A Cuddly Bear

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When were you certain you were non-binary?
« on: March 08, 2018, 12:57:32 pm »
Hi, this is my first post and I'm a little nervous about how it will be received. Please understand that I am simply curious, and I mean no harm at all. If my terms are incorrect or offensive they were not intended to be so.

With that in mind, I am a male biologically speaking, and I am confused as to how someone comes to conclusion that they are non-binary. It appears to me that the classic 2 gender binary is a social construct built around generalised behaviours of the sexes. This construct became rather polarised, when in reality there is something of a 60-40 split on these behaviours generally, so the venn diagrams very much overlap. There are more feminine men and masculine women. Would anyone agree with that? If so, then how do you discover you are non-binary? To do so continues the polarised notion of gender for the rest of us. If you're saying that you don't feel like the biological sex you are, then how? Other than that you don't feel like one or both of the binary gender constructs, which should be eroded anyway. I'm very curious to hear how it is that a lot of you came to the realisation?

I have no issues whatsoever with an individuals right to be whatever they want to be provided it doesn't harm anyone else, I just feel like non-binary is adding labels when they should be stripped away. These are all genuine questions by the way, I have not lived your experience, but I'm looking to understand it. I wish you all well.

Ben  :)

Offline Devlyn

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Re: When were you certain you were non-binary?
« Reply #1 on: March 08, 2018, 02:06:57 pm »
Welcome to Susan's Place, Ben!

"When were you certain you were non-binary?"

When i knew that I wasn't a man, and I knew that I wasn't a woman.

If you don't like extra labels, remove your own. Keep your mitts off mine, though.  ;D

Hugs, Devlyn

Offline Jessica

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Re: When were you certain you were non-binary?
« Reply #2 on: March 08, 2018, 02:09:25 pm »
Hi Ben!  Welcome to Susan’s Place!  I’m Jessica.  I identify as non binary in that I don’t feel I fit on either end of the “gender” spectrum.  Non binary or gender fluid doesn’t put a label on any fixed point.  More it allows infinite number of points you can identify with.  My own thoughts are all humans are non binary, all at their own personal point.  Hormones at different points in our life make physical changes to our bodies, but sometimes it doesn’t match how we feel about ourselves.

I see your new here, so I’ll post some links that may help you get better acquainted with the site. Then join in on a topic you find interesting and learn and share.

Please feel free to stop by the Introductions Forum to tell the members about yourself!




Things that you should read

"If you go out looking for friends, you are going to find they are very scarce.  If you go out to be a friend, you'll find them everywhere."

Offline Elis

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Re: When were you certain you were non-binary?
« Reply #3 on: March 08, 2018, 06:12:36 pm »
I always felt the trans man label never completely fit right; but it was the best label to describe myself and I couldn't find the right nb label. Then sort of recently I realised I do feel innately nb the same way a trans/cis man feels innately male or a cis/trans woman feels innately female. They don't know why they do they just do. Being nb has got nothing to do with how I express my gender necessarily; we don't all fit into the stereotype of being ultra feminine or ultra masculine. Same as how binary people don't always fit into gender stereotypes. The labels can feel confusing but it's helped me to feel like I'm valid and it felt great to finally find the right way to describe my gender. The different labels to describe various learning or physical disabilities/differences used to be seen as overly complicated but now we've got used them as we've learned the differences between them. The same will happen with the nb labels eventually
They/them pronouns preferred.




Offline widdershins

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Re: When were you certain you were non-binary?
« Reply #4 on: March 08, 2018, 08:16:17 pm »
I have to strongly disagree that the existence of non-binary people is somehow reinforcing the gender binary. Our being present and visible is if anything a testament that gender is a spectrum and a step toward making it more acceptable to break traditional gender norms. In fact, this line of questioning makes me especially nervous, since it generally comes from people who advocate against the existence of binary trans people as well.

Personally, I knew and expressed that I didn't feel like either a boy or a girl from a very young age, in the same way I've seen many binary trans people express that they've always just known they were a guy or a girl. Both labels feel viscerally wrong. I can name instances where it came up in kindergarten, for instance, though I soon learned to keep those feelings to myself because I was in a very conservative area with strict Evangelical parents, but they never went away.

But I didn't actually have the language to express that until I left for college. As a sophomore I coined the term "agender" to describe myself to a friend, and to my surprise and delight, I found there were already other people using the label when I googled it.

I don't have a problem who choose to use the non-binary label because of their politics surrounding gender identity, but for me, it's not a choice. I was born this way, in the same way binary trans people are, and transitioning to live as a non-binary person is literally the only way I could have managed to wake up every day and face the world any longer.

Offline Sno

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Re: When were you certain you were non-binary?
« Reply #5 on: March 11, 2018, 09:44:38 pm »
Hi Ben,

As I am not a boy, and I don’t feel wholly a girl, then what am I, was the question that was key for me. Yes, there are strong feminine traits, but then there are the ‘neither’ traits as well - yes, one gift that makes me shake my head in bemusement or shame, whenever men are around being, well, men.

This was explored in the thread https://www.susans.org/forums/index.php/topic,234349.0.html

This my description of my understanding of non-binary space from that thread - it helped me work out what labels best describe me.

We are all familiar with the sliding scale between male and female - but there are three other spectrums to deal with - sense of gender, from highly gendered to none; number of genders experienced, from poly gender, via bi gender and  single gender to none; and finally gender rigidity - fluid through to rigid

So for you, Ben,  your gender is male, (one gender, assumed from your name, apologies if I’m wrong :) ), rigid and highly gendered - a standard male configuration
For me, however, my genders are neutrois and feminine (bi-gender), rigid and moderately gendered - a neutrois- demigirl a non binary configuration.

The reason why we need those extra labels is quite simply validation, acceptance and understanding.

We are not ‘everything else that we can’t describe’ nondescript group of those who don’t fit the existing labels. So we have had to create our own labels to try to fill in the gaps, so that we can feel that we are being the best reflection we can of our gender, and yes over time those labels will change a little, as they are used and become more commonplace and established, and hopefully will start to settle on common understood terms.

It’s like trying to describe a philips, posidrive, Roberts, torx, machine, or slot head screw ... yes they are all screws, however, there are very real differences between them, and so it is with our sense of our gender.

Welcome to Susan’s, feel free to explore, and ask questions, but beware research tends to lead to self questions and are you ready for the answers. To paraphrase. Welcome Alice, to the Rabbit hole. *twinkle*


Rowan

Offline blackcat

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Re: When were you certain you were non-binary?
« Reply #6 on: March 29, 2018, 06:13:47 pm »
I'm glad I didn't have a full-blown gender crisis until I had enough life experience to notice the subtle nuances of what I am.

When I was a little kid, I was always like, "I want to be a boy!" When I was in my teens, early 20s, I can't count the number of times I've flippantly remarked, "I'm a gay man in a woman's body."

I just knew I wasn't female. I think back on it, and as a kid, I grew up somewhere TOTALLY without the culture, resources, or upbringing to address the question appropriately. Maybe it was better I laughed it off (along with everyone else around me). Because what's the opposite of girl, right? Boy, of course. Who knew there were more than two options of M or F, when those were the only two checkboxes you've ever been given?

I am grateful that I didn't ponder my identity and the question of transitioning seriously until "non-binary" was on my radar. I don't want to transition (every person individually needs to do what's best for them and I respect whatever that is), but it gives me a big *WOW!* moment to consider I potentially could have pulled the trigger on the erroneous logic, "if not F then M."

When it occurred to me I wasn't male or female, I asked myself if it was possible to be "psychologically androgynous." I had never heard of "non-binary"... until I googled my weird feelings enough to stumble upon the terminology. And so it began.  >:-)

tl;dr I had strong feelings of being "neither/nor" before I found the non-binary umbrella. I like the non-committal nature of the label, because I feel like there is still so much to learn, and the label allows room for that, as well as flexibility.

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