Monthly Archives: August 2011

dear student loan people: you don’t need to know my legal gender marker

i was filling out my online student loan application when i got to the dreaded gender question.  it wasn’t an optional question and answering it was a bit demeaning.  so i wrote a letter!  and put a stamp on it mailed it!  and here’s a copy of it:

hello!

 my name is mx. punk.  i’m a non-binary trans person, which means that i am neither male nor female.   i dislike being referred to with gendered pronouns and i’m not sure if my gender is “other” or if i simply don’t have a gender.  i’m comfortable with finding my own gender identity confusing.  as such, i dislike being forced to choose between male and female when filling out forms, using a public bathroom, etc.  i find it humiliating.

 when i got to the gender question on my student loan application, i clicked on “male”, then “female” several times in frustration before finally moving on.  actually, i’m not sure which gender i ended up on, so my legal gender marker may not match what’s on my application.  i’m not sure if that matters, but i sincerely hope that it doesn’t matter.

 i doubt that a person’s legal gender marker is a vital piece of information; you already require applicants to supply their social insurance number, name, date of birth and address.  you really need a third gender option.  “other” would work, and so would “i’d rather not say”.  this would be more inclusive and less alienating than forcing people to lie about their gender.

if you require further information on non-binary people, wikipedia¹ has a good article about genderqueer people.  you could also try googling “genderqueer”, “non-binary gender”, or “third gender”.

 thank you for reading my letter.  i hope you reconsider your exclusion of non-binary people.

 sincerely,

mx. punk

¹ en.wikipedia.org\wiki\Genderqueer

so whaddya think?  i could’ve written more about being non-binary, but i didn’t want to overwhelm whoever read the letter.  i also wanted to keep it short.  i used the wikipedia reference cuz wikipedia is familiar and safe.

what would you have changed about my letter?  what letter might you have written instead?  and have you ever written a similar letter?  tell me, peoples!

so, i used to hate my tits soooooo much…

is it weird to quote yourself?  because i read one of ladyxxxlazarus’ posts, replied to it and subsequently felt like writing this post.  so i’m gonna quote myself.  not cuz i think i’m the shit (well, i am the shit, and so are you), but so you know where my brain came from.

“i started cutting when i was 5 and i’ve been pretty serious about it at times.

 i’ll feel like all this burning/freezing and heavy goo is pulsing under my skin, emotion so thick/sharp i can’t tell if it’s joy or sorrow. so i’ll slit my flesh and it’ll ooze out. then i’ll be able to say, “oh, i felt THIS because of THAT.”

 not  cutting when i need to cut makes me feel like i might have a seizure or just explode or something.

 my partner won’t let me cut. i still have trouble with it from time to time, but he tells me that i’m his and that i’m not allowed to vandalize his property. that helps, actually. it makes me feel safe, like this terrible emotion won’t be able to hurt me and nothing can get me at all— and i calm down a bit.

 my partner thinks cutting is emotionally damaging for the cutter because, like most people, he thinks that it’s healthy and natural to have a certain respect for one’s body.

 i don’t really agree with him, but i know that HE isn’t allowed to vandalize MY property (“his” body). i would cry and be angry if he cut himself— cuz that’s MINE.

 so, some people think cutting causes permanent harm. but does it really? it depends who you ask, i guess.”  —mx. punk re: Whining about Self-Injury by ladyxxxlazarus (read original post)

pwing!  i’m just gonna go off from here and see if i end up with a post.  then you guys can tell me what you think/feel about it.

i’ve cut myself for many reasons.  the biggest reason was puberty; i didn’t want to “become a woman”.

before i actually started growing tits and bleeding outta my pussy, i guess i just assumed that my body wasn’t going to turn on me.  sure, i sorta knew what to expect, but i just assumed that because i didn’t feel like a woman, i wasn’t going end up looking like a woman.

i wore boys’ clothes throughout my entire childhood.  i also experimented (in elementary school and again in high school) with living as a guy.  i always ended up deciding that “boy” wasn’t much better than “girl”.  this went on until i eventually admitted what i’d always known–  that i’m a non-binary trans person.

so puberty triggered a few years of obsessive cutting and chest-binding.  i couldn’t understand how i could feel so unfeminine and still be growing tits— and earlier than all the icky girls in my class!  and the advent of the big bleed made me feel like a sick little alien, or something.

all this shit made me feel like something was pulsing under my skin.  it was so intense that i couldn’t tell what it was— so i’d cut.

i did eventually realize that my tits weren’t feminine, even if hers were.  nowadays, i love my tits and pussy.  why not?  they don’t make me female— and they’re a shit ton of fun!  my partner helped me a lot in overcoming my insecurities about appearing female.

my partner makes me feel extremely comfortable.  well, he also makes me feel all hot and tingly, but that’s something else entirely.  anyway.  i know that he sees me as mx. punk, his veryvery good kitty and not as a woman— regardless of what clothes i’m wearing and whether or not i’m sporting any tit.  so i don’t really want to change my body, these days.  plus, i’m not mortally terrified of being caught wearing bracelets and giggling.

i still want to cut from time to time, though.  it’s like, i feel that heavy flood of emotion, so wild i can’t tell if it’s sweetness or fear— and then i want to slit my flesh and let it escape the confines of my tiny body.

sweetsweet cupcake!

this cupcake is for ladyxxxlazarus for being the first person to EVER mention me in a post using non-gendered pronouns!  yummy!  and thanks!

let’s all eat cupcakes! the pic makes it look like there’s only one cupcake, but there is actually a cupcake for everyone in the entire world.  so, huzzah!

is being trans being sexist?

“In my opinion… any “gender identity” is inherently sexist, because you are attaching certain psychological attributes to biological sexes (which then become reified as “genders”) and then identifying your personality as belonging to such ridiculous constructs.”  — BlueTRICKster (read original post)

“But I can’t deny that traditional femininity is in no way right for me.  But how can I say that my penchant for rough-and-tumble games, practical & comfortable clothes, total discomfort with the idea of pregnancy, and having male companions makes me more of a boy than the next girl?  Isn’t that just playing into close-minded stereotypes?  Everybody has qualities that are traditionally masculine or traditionally feminine, and wouldn’t being proud of both my personality and my biological sex be more of a healthy and feminist stance?”  —ladyxxxlazarus (read original post)

“Truth is this, the clothing you wear does not make you male or female, who you are does that for you. So what does it matter?”  —Reneta Xian (read original post)

first off, NO.  no, being trans is obviously NOT being sexist.

this is something i’ve wondered about on many occasions.  i’m formulating the details of my opinion as i go along, so be patient and lemme know if i’m being incoherent or something. also, pleasepleaseplease tell me what you think of all this.  i think this is an important discussion.

as you may know, i’m a non-binary trans person, but i was assigned female at birth.  i believe that woman can be rough and/or gentle, loud and/or quiet, etc.  i know women who fit the male stereotype much better than i do— and i totally respect that they are women.

i believe that sex, gender identity and gender expression are distinct from one another.  i mean, someone with a penis can be a woman while behaving in a stereotypically male fashion.  who the fuck am i to tell this person that women don’t have penises and that women don’t like dirtbiking?  women do whatever they want and it doesn’t matter what genitals they have.

if i believe that sex, gender identity and gender expression are distinct from one another, then why can’t i just go with the gender i was assigned at birth?  i don’t know.  i really don’t know why i feel like a non-binary trans person.  i’m completely mystified.

it’s not that i don’t fit the stereotypes of the gender binary.  i mean, i don’t, but who does?  not fitting the stereotypes might not be a strong enough reason for identifying as non-binary because, well, the stereotypes are spidershit.

i view gender itself as a partly social construct that is incapable of binding people who don’t wish to be bound by it.  many people live happily and naturally with gender. many interactions between people are based on gender; whether or not it is entirely based in fact is irrelevant.  that’s why i don’t just want to get rid of gender; if it works for some people, than good for them.  other people reject gender and live happily and naturally without it.  and that’s pretty splendid, man.

i’m also not trying to create a new stereotype for non-binary people by calling myself genderqueer.  as far as i’m concerned, a person with a pussy who loves wearing pink ball gowns and fucking people with penises can be genderqueer, too.  i just don’t want anything to do with gender and its silly stereotypes and so i call myself “queer”.

i believe that gender is complex and mysterious and that we don’t have to put it under a microscope and dissect it.  i mean, maybe it’s so personal that it doesn’t really have to make sense.  i think gender is also inherently a bit nonsensical— like religion.  it either works for you or it doesn’t, but it doesn’t have to be logical.

so here’s where i’ve arrived: i’m not a non-binary trans person because i do/wear/say non-binary things.  i’m a non-binary trans person and i don’t need a bloody reason.  huzzah! that means i’ve decided that being trans does NOT automatically make you sexist.  sexist is when you label someone else as cis/trans because they do/don’t fit the stereotypes.  transness is perfectly valid and is based on things deeper than the gender stereotypes.

ps: in case anyone is wondering, i don’t prance about in tutus and mustaches.  i prance about in black kitty ears and band shirts (slayer, right now).  mostly, though, i prance about nekkid.

edit (august 11th, 2011)

i’ve just realized that i forgot to discuss something important.

while i do believe that gender stereotypes are social constructs (i doubt that fetuses with penises already like blue), i do realize that gender itself is also partly based on biology.  for example, i’m not saying that a trans person could be raised to be cis.  just saying.

it’s too serious-ful around here!

so here’s some silly violence!

you’re welcome.  i might have more for you later, depending on how i feel about “c.m.”.

and no, i don’t really think silly pictures are off-topic.  i think i promised you gender issues,  sexuality issues and silly pictures.  yay!