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Learning Causes Confusion

Discussion in 'Gender Identity and Expression' started by IvorySun, Oct 13, 2020.

  1. IvorySun

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    Hi all, new here. And I am sorry if this is long, but I am really just starting to learn and am confused.

    OK, so I recently became friends with someone who is trans and we have gotten really close in the last year (platonically). I have known trans people before, but have never really had friends who were trans or interacted with many trans people (I am extremely introverted, so my circle is small and I am not known to socialize much). Because I care for this person so much, I have spent a lot of time researching trans issues, etc. because at no point do I want to accidentally disrespect or invalidate them.

    Anyway, my research has brought me to a lot of terms. I have already had one "oh! I'm not broken!" moment when I discovered asexuals when I was researching sexuality.

    So, I have done webinars and done independent research on trans issues, and now it has me thinking about my life. I was assigned female at birth, but it brought up memories of when I was a kid and was convinced I was supposed to be a boy and something had happened to my genitals. Nothing did, it was a storyline I created when I was very young. Growing up I was always described as a "tomboy," which I don't think is a term anyone uses anymore.

    As I got older, I became more... feminine I guess. I don't wear dresses, but I do dress more feminine than I used to. I have an unhealthy obsession with makeup... but I rarely actually wear it. I paint my nails. However, I only ever grew my hair long because I was trying to prevent being constantly misgendered. When my hair is short everyone thinks I am a man. And this has led to a few very embarrassing moments. So my hair is long, but constantly in a ponytail. I also don't seem to make friends with women easily as I find our interests are vastly different and have always had more male friends because of this (which gets tough when everyone starts getting married and wives get touchy about female friends).

    Here's the thing. I feel comfortable with she/her pronouns. I feel ok identifying as a female. But it doesn't feel right. Like... I don't know, I don't feel really female, but I'm not male, either. I could fit either "norm" at any given time, sometimes more of one than the other. If that makes any kind of sense. I have seen a few terms now that could possibly fit me, but I'm not sure, and I don't know if this is what I really feel is me. Bigender, gender fluid, and gender flux are the main three. I'm not sure I understand fully what they each mean and how they could relate to me.

    I hope I made some kind of sense. I am just confused and trying to figure out where I fit in. Should I keep researching? Do I seek out someone to talk to? I just don't know.
     
  2. Jakebusman

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    You say you dont feel male or female sounds like you feel nonbinary
     
  3. QuietPeace

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    Since you are not sure continuing to explore seems to be the best option. Most larger cities have some type of group, probably currently meeting through some online method at this time. Maybe your friend could help you connect with more local people. Finding a therapist who specializes in gender issues is probably also a good idea. You do not have to commit to an identity label nor once you pick one are you be required to stay with it. You can try them on and have friends use different pronouns or names if you wish. Of course there is also reading discussions that are already here (you have found the correct subforum for this exploration) and posting yourself any more questions as you have just done here.
     
  4. Alek27

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    The more you know the less you understand, sounds familiar to me :slight_smile:
    I think you should keep researching, if you really need to find a good term to describe yourself. But is it really necessary if you feel ok as a female? What is not ok for you with being a woman? And why does it feel bad when someone thinks you're a man? Maybe you just need another form of expressing your femininity? You mentioned make-up obsession and long hair... Have you ever tried wearing make-up with short hair? Nobody would misgender you then I guess. And you know, friends are just friends, norms are just norms, and interests are just interests - you can be who you are, like who you like, do what you like to do, and that's totally fine.
    And for me it also sounds like nonbinary, have you consider this one yet?
     
  5. Mihael

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    Seems rather on the masculine side to me...
     
  6. Mihael

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    My two cents : pronouns are just pronouns, they’re not the same as who you are. I’m also not exactly moved by being called a she. Nor did I feel like being called a he appealed to me before I went through the hell of being pressured to “be female” whatever the hell it means to people and however the hell they make the mental jump from vagina to all the stereotypes (yes, stereotypes promoted by the political left, such as women “stciking together” or being connected by whatever experiences those people see fit - are still stereotypes, also “obivious” and apparently “scientific” or “hormonal” so called “truths” don’t hold for everyone). It’s also not about being okay identifying as female. On the surface, you might be, but in practice? You have stated yourself that it wasn’t always obvious to you that you are female and that you don’t exactly find yourself in the description as “a female”.
     
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  7. IvorySun

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    I'm 40 years old and have spent my life being told how to be female. I had a father who was... a butt. I'll leave it at that. But his intent in life was to get me married off and as far as he was concerned I was a complete failure if I wasn't married and popping out babies. Anyway, I went to all girl schools and was taught how to "be a girl." So now at this point I feel like I am at war with myself. I don't feel like anything, but both at the same time, if that makes any sense at all. But because of my upbringing, I get distraught if someone calls me anything but "she/her."
     
  8. Mihael

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    Idk, to me it does make sense.

    And that’s normal for trans folks too. Years of certain experience have impact on us. Same goes with gender stereotypes for many trans people, society taught them how to act feminine or masculine, accoriding to their assigned gender, so later they are less stereotypical in behaviour as the gender they identify as. (A trans man would be a somewhat androgynous man, less typical than your average guy, for example, even though he feels as masculine as your average man)
     
  9. Jakebusman

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    I don't act my assigned gender at all