October 27, 2015

Looking off into the distance on a sailboat in Narragansett Bay in August 2015. I'm wearing a red plaid shirt and am standing in the orange sunset.
On a sailboat in Narragansett Bay in August 2015

Many, many years later! Just wanted to add in a brief update here. It’s been interesting watching genderqueer identity become more widespread over the past five years or so. I used to feel like i was the only one.

Now, in the LGBTQ community (especially the trans community), it’s much more likely that i’ll find someone who uses the same gender label. But it’s just as likely that ze experiences hir gender in a very different way from the way i experience mine.

Also, the term “non-binary” has very recently come onto the scene (in the last year or two), something that encompasses genderqueer but is more than that one term.

Whereas i have no physical dysphoria but plenty of social dysphoria, it seems like more genderqueer-identified people today experience a good amount of physical dysphoria, too, and are exploring various options to transform their bodies. Those folks are also somewhat more likely to have experienced some of that dysphoria from the time they were teens (or earlier), while i didn’t really start being socially dysphoric until my mid-twenties.

And while i love “ze” and “hir” and use them both for myself and as my default gender-neutral pronouns, other genderqueer folks are more likely to use “they” and “them” as singular, gender-neutral pronouns.

This is all anecdotal, of course, since there still aren’t any large-scale studies of genderqueer folks and our identities.

I feel like the “genderqueer” label/identity is passing me by, and it’s both fascinating and kind of disconcerting.

In any case, i still identify the same way and am continuing to work on making room for my gender identity in individual interactions with people. It remains way easier for me to stand up in front of group of strangers (or even people i know) and talk about my gender identity than it is for me to interrupt an ongoing conversation when someone genders me inappropriately. This is especially true now that i work in a heterocentric and ciscentric workplace, where no one is –phobic but where people are mostly just not focused on LGBTQ stuff at all.

And i’m finding it harder and harder to hear myself referred to as “she” as time goes on, too. But that’s going to be a way harder egg to crack than just reasserting my gender identity is.

One thing at a time, i guess.

So i continue to wage the Global Gender Revolution in my own daily life, in whatever ways i can and in whatever ways i’m relatively comfortable.

Long live gender non-conformity and gender non-conformers!