Community Conversation > Non-binary talk

Conflict between my beliefs and my behavior

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Asche:
I'm feeling a bit of an inconsistency in me.  Nothing major, but it's a little annoying in those few moments when I have time to think about things.

On the one hand, I see gender as mainly a set of categories that society crams us all into, the better to force us to act the way they want us to act.  That was my experience of it as I was growing up -- my childhood was full of people telling me I was bad for not acting the way boys are supposed to act.  The grown-ups would exasperatedly ask me why I wasn't doing what everyone else (specifically, the other boys) was doing, and the other children ostracized me and picked on me for being "queer" or "weird."  I remember fairly young (maybe age 10) hearing all the things that boys were supposed to like and to not like, and the things that girls were supposed to be or not be, and I thought they were outrageously stupid.

That morphed into the flavor of Radical Feminism that I believe in: that people come in all varieties, with all different natures, and the only reason men mostly act one way and women another is the brainwashing and formative experiences they get from birth on.  So questions like "are trans women really women?" are ultimately meaningless; they're really arguments about who gets to run around with which label, and who should be shunned or jailed for failing to follow the rules you think apply to the label you've slapped on them.

Anyway, whether you agree with me or not, that's the way I look at the world, so in my mind, whether I "am a woman" or not is just a question of which prejudices you want to uphold.

But ....


The more I can look at myself in the mirror (or down at my body) and imagine that I'm seeing a woman (this category that I'm convinced is just a bit of society's foolishness), the better I feel.  And whether people see a woman when they see me (or at least whether I believe they do) has an enormous impact on my self-esteem.  I got called "he" once in a very noisy Zoom conference -- accidentally, I am certain -- and it threw me into a tizzy for a week.  I find myself looking at other women on the train or the subway and trying to imagine that they might (for all I know) be trans; I'm pretty sure it's so I can convince myself that my body shape lies within the range of body types that "real" women have.  I keep telling myself I don't care.  But if I'm honest with myself, I do!

Nothing like feeling like a counter-example to your most deeply held beliefs :)

Fortunately, there's enough going on in my life that I don't have very much time for this kind of navel-gazing.  My days are mostly spent doing whatever it is I do, and whether I'm a woman or a man or something else is irrelevant to the things I do.  (Other than which gendered public toilet I use.)

But when I have time on my hands, this is the sort of thing I tax my mind with.  (Like I really have nothing better to do... /end{sarcasm})

paprika:
You are not alone. I am agender and AMAB, but I like my feminine body. I love that I am a UK 8 dress size and have a flat tummy. However, I may be rejecting the body shape of my male friends, who have the 'permanent pregnant' look from their large tummys.

RandiL:
Thanks for starting this discussion Asche. I have my own set of self doubts related to this topic. In my case it's not clear what gender I should be. Maybe that's common here.

I am repelled by masculinity in myself (not just toxic masculinity, really any of it). But I wouldn't say that I feel like a woman. Am I agender? No, I don't think so; I am on HRT, doing facial hair removal, taking voice classes... I am looking forward to presenting more female although I hold back a little out of wanting to avoid disappointment.

Anyway, it's good to have other people who are going through their own versions of this uncertainty, not that I wish it on any of you.

Hugs, Randy

Sent from my dual-floppy Victor 9000 using Tapatalk

Rakel:
Good evening paprika,

I noticed that this is your first post here at Susan's Place and I would like to officially welcome you to our corner of the internet. We are a supportive website for everyone with gender related issues. We are moderated because we have many members here who are underage and we need to keep Susan's Place Family Friendly.
We have Terms of Service which are 20 rules we all must abide by. I will post the links below.

Again, Welcome to Susan's Place.

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Asche:
I'm going to go off on a bit of a tangent here:


--- Quote from: RandyL on February 13, 2021, 10:55:57 am --- In my case it's not clear what gender I should be. Maybe that's common here.

--- End quote ---

I don't know about "should."  IMHO, it's a matter of which label makes you more comfortable and makes your interactions with the wider society easier.

It's society that cares which label you have (and wants to force you to fit into gender-box they assigned you to.) You'll still be the same person whether you have got a blue nametag or a pink one or a lavender one or a tie-dyed nametag.  (But society will treat you different, based on the color of your nametag.)

Personally, when I'm by myself, I'm not "male" or "female" or "bigender" or "nonbinary" or whatever, I'm just me, and "gender" is irrelevant.  It's only when I have to deal with other people that I have to deal with this "gender" nonsense.  I don't wear dresses because I'm "female" (whatever that means), I wear them because I like them. It's the people around me that insist that wearing a dress makes you "female."  I'm old and tired, so I just say to myself "whatever" and go along with it.  Also I find I'm more comfortable around most of the "female"-labeled people than the "male"-labeled ones.  I don't know if that means I'm "really" a "woman," or a "man," or a "third-gender", or whatever, and frankly, I don't care.

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