1. This site uses cookies. By continuing to use this site, you are agreeing to our use of cookies. Learn More.

Are Gender and sexuality really 2 separate things?

Discussion in 'LGBT Later in Life' started by AnimalBLUE, Sep 13, 2018 at 3:35 AM.

  1. AnimalBLUE

    Regular Member

    Joined:
    Aug 23, 2018
    Messages:
    38
    Likes Received:
    11
    Location:
    UK
    Gender:
    Genderqueer
    Gender Pronoun:
    They
    Sexual Orientation:
    Lesbian
    Out Status:
    Some people
    Firstly, just to mention I’ve also posted this same post in the gender forum as I think applies to both sexuality and gender.

    If Gender and sexuality are 2 separate things, than why are there so many gay men who are feminine and lesbians who are boyish or butch?

    I genuinely don’t get it. Does gender and sexuality overlap? If you’re gay are you more likely to suffer with gender related issues?

    Apologies in advance for this thread, I don’t at all mean to sound rude, but I am trying to make sense of it all because it has a major effect on me and how I am feeling. I realise that many gay men aren’t fem and likewise many lesbians who are very fem, however, there are many who would appear to be outside the binary gender.

    I am a lesbian and I’m very boyish/ladish but I wouldn’t call myself butch. Each to their own I guess. If someone was to see my they just say I’m a gay women etc! I am I missing something here? Are boyish lesbians very different to non binary or even transgender? I’m asking because I’m genuinely confused, but just to be clear, I’m not in anyway meaning to sound rude. In the past when people have said to me...well she doesn’t look like a lesbian...then I’ve usually answered with, but what does one look like? However, Since questioning my own gender and being very confused I’ve reverted back to.....no actually in many cases you can tell if someone’s gay but I accept not in every occasion.

    That said...

    However I pretended to be a boy quite a few time during my childhood and teenage years. I wanted to be perceived as a guy and even gave a different name etc in new groups of people that I would briefly meet. I’ve used men’s toilets as felt I fit in. Would any other lesbian behave like this or is there something else going on here? Is it to do with my gender instead?

    I suffer with gender dysphoria ...do other lesbians suffer with this? Is again is this to do with gender and absolutely nothing to do with sexuality what so ever?

    I feel that it’s hard to relate to other women...especially when it comes to fem things and group conversations between women.....do other lesbians struggle it’s being able to relate to fem women?

    I just don’t know what to think anymore....you may wonder the reason for this post. Well I’m 37 a lesbian and suddenly recently questioning my gender identity...I feel perhaps somewhere in between or even trans. That’s my gut feeling. Did I get it wrong all those years ago when I came out as a lesbian? Did I get it confused with gender instead? I’ve often become co fused by fem lesbians because I don’t u derstand how they can be? The more I think about it the more I’m realising this is more to do with me than lesbians. Perhaps as a youngster I saw all these images of butch lesbians and assumed this is what all lesbians are like. Perhaps I assumed all lesbians were boyish and laddish like me....that’s why I’m a lesbian....perhaps I’m wrong.....perhaps I’m not a lesbian at all and actually I’m trans![/QUOTE]
     
    #1 AnimalBLUE, Sep 13, 2018 at 3:35 AM
    Last edited: Sep 13, 2018 at 3:36 AM
  2. Nicholas7

    Regular Member

    Joined:
    Jun 28, 2018
    Messages:
    118
    Likes Received:
    25
    Location:
    UK
    Gender:
    Male
    Gender Pronoun:
    He
    Sexual Orientation:
    Bisexual
    Out Status:
    Out to everyone
    Gender - what are you? for example, male, female etc.

    sexuality - This is different, this is what you are attracted to....
     
    AnimalBLUE likes this.
  3. AnimalBLUE

    Regular Member

    Joined:
    Aug 23, 2018
    Messages:
    38
    Likes Received:
    11
    Location:
    UK
    Gender:
    Genderqueer
    Gender Pronoun:
    They
    Sexual Orientation:
    Lesbian
    Out Status:
    Some people

    Hi Nicholas,
    Thanks for your reply. I know that the above is what everyone says but I am really confused myself about it all. I guess what I’m trying to learn is why is it that many of my lesbian friends quite masculine and my straight friends feminine. Surely there’s something connected here to gender. Is it that a fair percentage of gay people have a different gender expression to straight people? But they are happy with their gender Assigned at birth. I know that I’m going back to years ago in time (a backward view) where the assumption was that most lesbians are only butch or boyish however I do wonder if there’s something in this assumption. I’m just trying to work out what I am. That’s all. If lesbians suffer from gender dysphoria than perhaps I’m not trans at all and I’ve been worrying about nothing.
     
  4. AnimalBLUE

    Regular Member

    Joined:
    Aug 23, 2018
    Messages:
    38
    Likes Received:
    11
    Location:
    UK
    Gender:
    Genderqueer
    Gender Pronoun:
    They
    Sexual Orientation:
    Lesbian
    Out Status:
    Some people
    0% of my straight female friends are masculine.

    80% of my gay female friends are.

    What’s going on?
     
  5. AnimalBLUE

    Regular Member

    Joined:
    Aug 23, 2018
    Messages:
    38
    Likes Received:
    11
    Location:
    UK
    Gender:
    Genderqueer
    Gender Pronoun:
    They
    Sexual Orientation:
    Lesbian
    Out Status:
    Some people
    If I was straight I’d be currently questioning my gender big time and 100% assume in non binary or trans. Because I’m a lesbian I feel it’s blurring my understanding of what I am.
     
  6. notaprincess06

    Regular Member

    Joined:
    Mar 4, 2014
    Messages:
    39
    Likes Received:
    30
    Location:
    Europe
    Gender:
    Genderqueer
    Gender Pronoun:
    She
    Sexual Orientation:
    Bisexual
    Out Status:
    Some people
    I'm genderqueer/non-conforming too and for me it's totally 2 different things. Also, I am bisexual and have in fact been in love with men. I'm also quite masculine, not super "butch" but like..soft butch nerdy so as in I'm masculine but not macho, if that makes sense.

    There is no connection between sexuality and gender themselves but I do think socially/personality wise there might be. What I mean is that for ex we all know atheists and progressive people are also more likely to be less conforming in every way and more open to seeing themselves and the world beyond the narrow guidelines of gender norms and stereotypes. In that same way, I think sexuality and gender might be connected in a way through how being "different" from what society deems "normal" opens you up to non-conformity, sometimes even without realizing or wanting it.

    Yes, straight men are generally rarely as "feminine" as some gay men are but at the same time what we perceive as "feminine" behavior is largely just behavior and styles we artificially coded as belonging to one gender or another and that have become so ingrained in society that our brains absorb and internalize them from a very young age, thus confirming these stereotypes. It's like the way we view everything, for ex even certain foods. There's groups of people, who make up a society, who largely regard eating bugs, worms, tarantulas as delicacies, while the rest of us naturally have a disgust for them. "Naturally" sometimes just means the brain learned and adapted to what it was exposed to.

    So, to keep that example, straight men are rarely as "feminine" as some gay men but at the same time they are also less permitted to be that way, whether they consciously think of that or not, because their brains do know their sexuality, they know which gender roles they're supposed to go by and generally adapt to that. In that sense, sexuality and gender do influence one another to some extent. A feminine gay man will face ridicule and all that stupid stigma but at the same time, being gay does make it possible for him to find love and acceptance somewhere. I think a straight feminine man would mentally have it more difficult in that sense.

    The same can be said about women although because women and femininity are already considered less than, women receive less stigma and social rejection for being somewhat non conforming(everyone wears pants and even suits but only women wear dresses, for ex). But a woman whose sexuality is mostly or entirely straight, relates to herself and the world in terms of her gender and the expectations around it differently than perhaps gay women are "allowed" to. As someone who does like men too and went through most of my life so far largely unaware of my attraction to women, I can say being more than a little masculine while also not looking naturally like some model/actress type(not ugly but not spectacular) has really negatively impacted my emotional life because men here(I live in a more conservative part of Europe) really don't like this since gender norms and sexism are stronger here than in, say, western Europe. I've actually felt desexualized and completely unattractive my entire life because of this, no in my own opinion of myself but in how the rest regard me, since I've never met queer women and men treat me a someone who is not a potentially viable sexual partner. Most women here are pretty feminine and much more feminine than women in Germany for ex, where gender norms are much more flexible and thus a lot of women are more androgynous regardless of sexuality. As a lesbian though, I think somewhere deep down you're freer to explore styles and go beyond gender norms because non-straight women tend to have a more varied taste and less narrow perception of what a woman "should" be like.

    Then I think another thing that might make it seem like gender and sex are somehow connected, is just that in this society that heavily stereotypes and artificially stereotypes everything according to some narrow gender binary, homosexuality is still somehow regarded(even if in subtle ways) as doing your gender wrong, defying your gender, being the other gender. It's that being a "real" men is directly linked to being straight and being straight is linked to being macho, etc. and then being a 'real" woman is linked to being straight as well and being straight means you're a woman so it means you are supposed to be feminine. That's why homosexuality in men is regarded way worse and elicits far more negative responses than homosexuality in women. Because if you're not straight then you're not a "real" man, you're thus more of a woman by that awful mental gymnastics, and women are the weaker, less valuable gender. At the same time, gay women, although also exposed to plenty of homophobia, are more "acceptable", it's more forgivable and less disgusting when it's 2 women, because a) women are ofc sexual objects so men think it's hot but also b) they're emulating men and masculinity is more valuable. This idea that if you're gay you're somehow less your gender and more the other gender, may influence the way someone relates to gendered things and to other people. Gay men may feel closer to straight women culture because of this, freer to like it and embrace it, they may feel like in some ways closer to a woman's experience because they both like men. Same with some gay women. Of course, it's pretty artificial in that whether you're gay or straight you can naturally like anything under the sun, regardless of how it is gendered, but gendering conditions most of us and makes us feel we are "different" as a group when in fact we're only different as individuals.

    Maybe there is a bit of a biological factor too, like larger amounts of either testosterone or estrogen in the womb, etc but those things can't logically make that huge a difference, especially when it comes to things that are human inventions not natural phenomenons. If that were different then 90% of straight people would behave a certain way and like certain things and 90% of gay ppl would be "effeminate" or "butch", which isn't the case.

    Oh and I personally know women who you'd think are gay if you went by how they dressed and act and are actually super straight. I don't know any in my country but in Germany, UK, US, Canada. There's even actresses who have a natural and well defined androgynous side to them and are straight, like Tilda Swinton, Robin Wright, Cate Blanchett(who I really really adore btw).
     
    Drizzle and AnimalBLUE like this.
  7. tystnad

    Regular Member

    Joined:
    May 12, 2018
    Messages:
    257
    Likes Received:
    223
    Location:
    Sweden
    Gender:
    Female
    Gender Pronoun:
    She
    Sexual Orientation:
    Gay
    Out Status:
    Some people
    Hey AnimalBLUE,

    I recently responded to a thread of your with a similar question so I won't repeat what I said there, but I just want to point out that there is a major difference between gender and gender expression. Gender is something we are - we are female, we are male, we are non-binary. Gender expression, is on the other hand, is simply how we express ourselves - that can be masculine, that can be feminine, it can be androgynous, it can be a mix of all these elements if you wish. Although traditionally these have been linked to genders (masculine as male, feminine as female), there is no expression that is inherent to any gender. Rather, linking femininity to women and masculinity to men is something that is tied into gender hierarchies and is often based on very outdated ideas - the terms femininity and masculinity have actually become a little controversial within gender studies because it's impossible to use them without reinforcing a normative system - and also because they're so tied in with heteronormativity (as in, feminine and masculine as opposites that compliment each other, you need the two of them to 'balance' a relationship, etc).

    That said - whether there is a link between sexuality and gender is questionable and often debated - and in a large extend depends on how you defend gender (which is extremely complicated, because finding a strict definition of a social construct is next to impossible). Whether there is a link between sexuality and gender expression, however, is much easier to pin down. While being, for example, a lesbian does not mean you have to present in a manner considered masculine (as proven by femmes, for one), but by taking the hetero out of a situation, you're also removing the pressure to present in a way that has traditionally been seen as linked to your gender. Femininity, in the traditional sense (note that femme lesbians do still tend to defy femininity in its traditional sense, ie one that is supposed to be for the male gaze) can feel extremely limiting - claustrophobic, if you wish - for people who do not adhere to heterosexuality. More so, it's easier to defy gender roles if everyone around you does, which makes it more likely for lesbians who are around other lesbians to feel free to explore their gender expression more than straight women who are around mostly feminine straight women, and recognisability as a lesbian also plays a large role (for example, i tend to dress more masculine when i'm going to be around straight guys to reduce the chance of being hit on, and more androgynous when i don't have to worry about). However, it can sometimes be really difficult to know where gender expression ends and where gender begins, and it's a struggle that a lot of people face at one point or another.

    To answer specific questions from this post - yes, there are some lesbians who have faced these things, for example there are lesbians who use he/him pronouns and who bind or pack. whether or not lesbians can experience gender dysphoria depends on the definition used ('feeling uncomfortable with your gender' vs 'feeling uncomfortable with your assigned gender because it does not match the gender you perceive yourself as') but it is quite possible to feel uncomfortable with your body or being perceived female. That said, this is an experience that strongly overlaps with non-binary lesbians as well as some trans men, so it's next to impossible to give you a conclusive answer of whether you're trans or not, unfortunately. But your experience is a fair reason to question. Sometimes people say that it all comes down to which gender you feel deep inside, but that can be hard to determine (i know i never felt like any gender because I don't know what that should even feel like). I suppose it strongly relates to how you want people to perceive you. How do you feel when people perceive you as a man? How does that compare to when people perceive you as a lesbian?
    For myself, I feel uncomfortable with being perceived as female, particularly be men, and have a hard time connecting to straight women, especially feminine ones -- in a large part because these groups tend to draw the most conclusions about what i am supposedly am based on my gender. But, I have no issue being seen as [non-feminine] female by lesbians, who tend to be a lot less restrictive in their ideas about what a gender means. That doesn't provide me with a conclusive answer for myself, but I suppose in a way I've accepted that definitions of gender vary and since i don't have that gut feeling that some people have that tells them what gender they are, and because it makes no difference what gender people perceive me as, as long as they don't draw conclusions based on that gender, i've accepted that any restrictive definition of gender just doesn't suit me and i have no interest in embracing a particular label. That's what works for me, but it most certainly does not for everyone.

    Just to finish... you did not get things "wrong". You expressed your feelings in language that best suited at the time. It's not at all unusual for trans men to identify as a lesbian first before finding the answers, and it's never to late to rethink that and use language that better explains your experience. There's no rush to figure it out, and don't blame yourself for not thinking about this earlier. We discover things as we learn more about the world, and that's OK!
     
  8. AnimalBLUE

    Regular Member

    Joined:
    Aug 23, 2018
    Messages:
    38
    Likes Received:
    11
    Location:
    UK
    Gender:
    Genderqueer
    Gender Pronoun:
    They
    Sexual Orientation:
    Lesbian
    Out Status:
    Some people

    Hi there, thank you very much for you’re thorough and helpful reply. I will do a proper reply to you shortly...just trying to get my head around it all and how I. Feeling x
     
  9. AnimalBLUE

    Regular Member

    Joined:
    Aug 23, 2018
    Messages:
    38
    Likes Received:
    11
    Location:
    UK
    Gender:
    Genderqueer
    Gender Pronoun:
    They
    Sexual Orientation:
    Lesbian
    Out Status:
    Some people

    Hi Tystnad, thanks for you’re reply again...I’d forgotten that I had already asked a similar question, but I guess it’s still going around in my head. Will reply to you properly abit later on today when I’ve got my head around it all. Thank x
     
  10. mnguy

    Full Member

    Joined:
    Nov 12, 2006
    Messages:
    1,769
    Likes Received:
    73
    Location:
    MN
    Gender:
    Male
    Gender Pronoun:
    He
    Sexual Orientation:
    Gay
    Out Status:
    Some people
    This is how I understand it and may not have it all right and am open to other ideas. I see them as different things, but also there is a range of each that I think is easy to forget about when we grew up being taught a strict system of gay or straight, male or female which left no middle ground. I happen to be at the far ends of the ranges where I'm gay and male, but that's not the case for everyone and they don't have to pick one extreme or the other. I read a post elsewhere about a guy who was struggling to identify as gay or bi and I thought the answer was why not identify as Kinsey 4-5? If others don't understand that it's a chance to educate them so there's more awareness. Understanding sexuality and gender identity as ranges, or spectrums to add a rainbow theme to it, should help alleviate the stress of having to pick and also accepting that it's complex and can vary over one's life.

    Masculine and feminine is another spectrum and I think is more of a personality trait. I think there's a lot of variability in how it relates to sexuality and gender identity. It's common to assume feminine guys are gay and it's true sometimes, but I think it's because they stand out more than average guys and that's the stereotype of gay men. There's a huge misunderstanding of gay and feminine for guys and people will often say something like, "that seems gay" when they're really referring to the masc/fem norms. Things are gay when they relate to same gender sexual arousal/interest otherwise it's probably a masc/fem norm thing. I really think most gay guys have average masculinity so we blend in and others don't realize how many gay people are around them all the time. Some gay people feel more free to reject those norms, perhaps partly as an f you to society for rejecting them. A straight guy who wants to do certain things sometimes won't out of fear of not conforming to the norms which is sad. It's really complex and these norms vary by where and when you live too.

    All of this would be so much easier if everyone would understand these things are just like other human characteristics that vary and that's perfectly normal. Why can people accept variation in other characteristics, but think these things must be limited to A or B? I don't understand why variability in these things is such a threat to some people that they react in very cruel and damaging ways. How does society benefit from that rigid thinking? The people who get upset about others not conforming would have less anger if they accepted reality. Would we feel the internal struggle over these things if we were raised in a world where variability was fully accepted and all combinations were equally valued? I think everyone would be much happier.
     
    Drizzle and AnimalBLUE like this.
  11. Nicholas7

    Regular Member

    Joined:
    Jun 28, 2018
    Messages:
    118
    Likes Received:
    25
    Location:
    UK
    Gender:
    Male
    Gender Pronoun:
    He
    Sexual Orientation:
    Bisexual
    Out Status:
    Out to everyone
    Not all gay men act like girls, and not all lesbians act like men. This is a huge stereotype. This is the problem with the world at this day and age. All people do these days is a stereotype. When I was a kid and I used to be extremely homophobic and when someone used to say the word "gay" it meant "he or she acts like a the opposite gender and is attracted to the same sex. But this is so wrong. I am a bisexual man and I love football, working out, drinking beer and I never shave anything. Yes I am such a "man" as you can say. I even know straight makeup artists. But since when was "makeup" a girl thing?

    the arab men used to wear makeup such as dark eyeliner. Men are always the one who are discriminated for everything they do in this day and age that's why I feel it's scary to be LGBT if you are man. I feel if you are a women it's easier.
     
    AnimalBLUE likes this.
  12. AnimalBLUE

    Regular Member

    Joined:
    Aug 23, 2018
    Messages:
    38
    Likes Received:
    11
    Location:
    UK
    Gender:
    Genderqueer
    Gender Pronoun:
    They
    Sexual Orientation:
    Lesbian
    Out Status:
    Some people

    Hi there again, many thanks for the helpful reply and the time you spent too. A few things suck out to me about from you’re reply that has certainly given me something to think about.

    The first one was where you mentioned about it could be about how I want to be perceived by people and how it makes me feel when people refer to me as a man vs lesbian. To be honest I’ve never been completely comfortable with people calling me a lesbian...apart from the first few times. I got bullied during my early teens and funnily enough most of it was in relation to my gender. Then I remember the first time someone called me gay...I was sooo happy because I knew I was attracted to women so it was correct despite being in a derogatory way. I was so offended about names towards my gender that it’s almost like I shut that part of me down. So at that stage in my teens I firmly believed I was a lesbian and a female. HOWEVER......Actually, when I reassess all this I’m much more comfortable being called a guy then a lesbian. So yeah, I want to be perceived as a guy or perhaps non binary but not a lesbian nowadays and I actually think that’s always been the case..,I just didn’t know it.

    The other part where you mentioned about the fact that I didn’t get things wrong - I completely agree that I expressed feelings the best I knew how at the time, however I sort of feel like my life hasn’t started yet. Almost like everything I’ve done as a women has somehow been false or a complete waste because if I’m truly not happy doing something as a women, then will my life begin properly as a guy. I’ve been there , well almost. I’ve pretended I was a guy at times and managed to go undetected - believe me the world is so much more vibrant and colourful.
     
  13. AnimalBLUE

    Regular Member

    Joined:
    Aug 23, 2018
    Messages:
    38
    Likes Received:
    11
    Location:
    UK
    Gender:
    Genderqueer
    Gender Pronoun:
    They
    Sexual Orientation:
    Lesbian
    Out Status:
    Some people

    Thanks again for you’re reply. It’s just been a real rollercoaster ride over the last couple of months and it’s made me question, things that I never would have even thought of before. It’s like as if all of a sudden my eyes are open wide instead of slightly ajar, and there are some surprises revealed to me. You hear of people discovering things about their sexuality in their forties....now I have an idea of how unsettling it is for people however with me...it’s about my gender. I’m so worried too because my partner has no idea about it all but I don’t want to say anything yet incase I’ve somehow made a big mistake my self. Then I think to myself....do lesbians question their gender like Iam! Prob not!
     
  14. AnimalBLUE

    Regular Member

    Joined:
    Aug 23, 2018
    Messages:
    38
    Likes Received:
    11
    Location:
    UK
    Gender:
    Genderqueer
    Gender Pronoun:
    They
    Sexual Orientation:
    Lesbian
    Out Status:
    Some people
    Hi and thanks very much for you’re replies. I’ve quoted this reply of mine from the same question I’ve asked in the gender forum on EC. I am feeling a lot more clear minded about this today...probably for the first time since discovering something about my gender that differs from my assigned gender at birth (Female). I’m starting to recognise because of some helpful comments on here and other websites that there are both fem and masc gay women and men, likewise with straight men and women there are variations of masc and fem. I’ve used some of you’re helpful comments in forming this post as I’ve found them really helpful. That gender and sexuality are separate things. However, as a gay person it’s much easier to be more flexible with you’re gender and this may account for what seems a higher number of mas lesbians and a higher number of fem gay men. This is because for heterosexual people in a TRADIONAL sense, you must be fem as a straight women and be pretty to catch a mans eyes or a masc straight man to protect, bread win and provide for the women. So I guess as a gay person you can break out of these restrictive expectations and explore more. When I refer to a higher number of masc lesbians and fem gay men....it could be higher but perhaps not as high as some think including myself up until now! Where perhaps I thought It was say a ration of 85% masc lesbian and 15% fem exist, it’s probably more like 60 masc and 40 fem but that’s just my own prediction.

    In addition, butch lesbians and fem gay men are more likely to stand out and therefore expose people more to the idea that this is how all gay people are, when in fact, there are probably gay people all around us all the time and some we don’t notice.

    So I guess the 2 questions that I need to ask myself are;

    Am I a lesbian who takes advantage of the flexibility of being able to explore and express myself outside the restrictive gender norms of fem women.

    Or

    Am I someone who is attracted to women exclusively but also feel that my assigned gender at birth doesn’t match how I feel and what I feel I am. For example that could be trans Male or non binary but I’m leaving it open for now.

    Thanks again for you’re comments as it’s helped me gain some clearer u derstand it of this![/QUOTE]
     
    Drizzle and tystnad like this.
  15. notaprincess06

    Regular Member

    Joined:
    Mar 4, 2014
    Messages:
    39
    Likes Received:
    30
    Location:
    Europe
    Gender:
    Genderqueer
    Gender Pronoun:
    She
    Sexual Orientation:
    Bisexual
    Out Status:
    Some people
    [/QUOTE]

    I think always in non-conforming, liberal groups you will find a higher percentage of people in that group are 'different' in other ways too and mentally open/aware enough to realise that there's more than 1 way to be. I'm certain that one of the main reasons why there tend to be more androgynous/masculine presenting women in the gay/bi community than among straight women, percentage wise, is because of what was said above by me and tystnad, that basically non-straight women(even more so than non-straight men I would say) are far less pressured and a lot freer to experiment with their look, fashion taste, etc. I'm sure it's something most women(and men) don't necessarily consciously think about but your sexuality sort of does come with extra expectations of gender conformity, if you're straight. For straight women there is a conscious and subconscious pressure to look feminine in that stereotypical way(same applies to men). A woman who lives in a fairly secular, modern society and doesn't only like men or, even more so, likes only women, doesn't have the same pressure even if being "butch" does come with some ridicule.

    Point is, what is regarded as feminine or masculine has largely nothing to do with biology. You can literally say you're a woman, think you're a woman, even have the body parts that society recognizes as female and have people treat you as if you're not a woman or woman enough just because you wear a certain type of clothes or don't shave your legs or act in a way that isn't regarded as feminine. It's mostly about performing the part as expected. Women don't smile more than men, make themselves seem smaller and more fragile through body language and are more agreeable because that's how women are, they do it because that's how they were conditioned to be as part of the part they were assigned based on their genitals. You are often conditioned into liking and appreciating certain behaviors and things, it's not just a natural preference.

    As for your gender identity, you have to try and look beyond these surface things. For ex, one of the things that always somehow made me know that I wasn't a transman is that when I thought of myself having sex with someone, being romantically/sexually desired/loved it wasn't as a man, it wasn't in a different body, it wasn't as a man. I don't feel like "female" encapsulates 100% of who I am but "male" doesn't either , it's an area in between, maybe one that has little to do with labels and certainly not body parts. Gender dysphoria is often of a social nature, dysphoria related to expectations of the gender you were assigned to. That's something I deal with personally and I feel slightly uncomfortable with the signs of my physical female-ness(as perceived by society) around men because of how men are taught to relate to them and perceive me as a human being based on these characteristics. Of course, not all men are this way but sadly enough of them are that you never know who automatically perceives you as inferior based on gender alone. I don't have that feeling around women.

    How do you think of yourself beyond your sense of fashion and other such things, how do you want to be perceived by someone you love and desire? You can be female or male regardless of what you like and how you act.
     
    Drizzle likes this.