(I promise, I’m going to get back to the ACA bill real soon now. This is just some collected thoughts I’ve been meaning to write about)
Let’s start here: When I was little, I don’t think I was a little girl. My parents did, but I’m not so sure.
I didn’t want to join Girl Scouts, I wanted to join Boy Scouts. I played with Barbies, but they went on adventures to rescue Ken while riding on my stuffed animals (I used hairbands to attach them to the stuffed dogs). I played with army men and Legos and lincoln logs, making forts and staging large sieges. I created rules for how far you could move an army man in a turn using a ruler, so we could play out fair battles in the backyard. I wanted to be a dog. I rode bikes, and played pretend fantasies. I loved Pokemon. I wrestled, and I threw rocks, and I kicked and bit and fought dirty. I triumphed over my enemies, and I played with the boys more than I played with the girls. I wasn’t a tomboy; tomboys liked sports. But I didn’t really feel like a girl either.
I’ve described myself in the past as a failure of a girl. Literally, that’s been my gender: I’m a girl, but I suck at it so badly I barely qualify.
I’ve described myself as a nerd tomboy: like a tomboy, but with geekery instead of sports. And that mostly fits me. Most of the time.
Sometimes I see something depicting women or depicting men and I just don’t want to be a woman anymore. Sometimes I have dysphoria. Always, I really wish I had a penis. It just seems so much cleaner, so much less fussy, so much easier to deal with.
(To be fair: always I have some kind of dysphoria, but it changes from day to day)
Sometimes I put on my corset and I put on my dresses and I love how I look and feel. Sometimes I wear makeup. Mostly I can’t be bothered, but sometimes I do.
But sometimes I look at binders and long for something that would flatten my breasts so I can get the right silhouette.
I crossdress, daily, for work: I wear men’s clothing, despite presenting female. This started out of fear and incompetence: I didn’t and don’t know how to dress like a woman in 2017. I can dress like a woman in a time when gender roles were more rigid, but I can’t seem to get the hang of the fluidity in dress expression, where the rules are firm yet subtle, hard to tease out. Off the clock I wear jeans and t-shirts.
I want to be androgynous. But you can’t look androgynous and be fat. Everyone who you see androgynous is thin, so they don’t have much in the way of breasts, and keeps their hair short enough to be ambiguous. I would love to play with gender, but I feel trapped into a female expression.
I don’t know what words to use for myself other than queer. This is one of the things I was thinking about when I changed the name of my blog: my gender is “Other” and I’m not sure how to specify.
This hasn’t been an article so much as a word dump, a feelings vomit about gender. Is anyone out there who feels like me? Does anyone relate? Sometimes I feel alone. I don’t want to be.