my partner is just fucking plasmic.
he seems to really accept my gender (or absence thereof) and to understand that the gender binary is a social construct that doesn’t work for everybody. we have casual confabulations about gender expression, gender identity, and trans issues. my partner hasn’t called me his girlfriend in ages; he calls me his partner. he tries with all his furry might to apply non-gendered pronouns to me.
my partner still snags on the pronoun thing.
when he tells me silly stories about us in the third person, he generally calls me “it”. i guess he’s ok with calling me “it” when he’s being silly, but he won’t call me “it” when he’s being solemn. i don’t mind being called “it”. i think the word is so jarring that it makes it harder to use feminine pronouns by accident, if that makes any sense to you.
we’ve been experimenting with the “ze/zer” pronoun set with some success. the trouble with it is that you have to over-enunciate the words in order to make them sound different than feminine pronouns. mostly, though, “ze” is fabulous. my partner is getting better about using my name or “ze” instead of feminine pronouns and i’m veryvery stoked that he’s as supportive as he is.
when my partner is chatting to someone other than me, however, he usually uses feminine pronouns. like if someone says, “how’s mx. punk? is she still looking for work?” it’s understandable that my partner might say, “she’s happy and awesome— except for the part about looking for work.”
it isn’t that my partner thinks of me as a female— i know that. i know he respects my gender and i know he tries veryvery hard to avoid applying feminine pronouns to me. it’s just that other people trick him into applying feminine pronouns to me.
still, that’s pretty good for a cis man who only knows one person of non-binary gender and who grew up believing that the gender binary had the last word in everything. actually, that’s pretty good for ANYbody— i know a few queers who aren’t half as understanding as he is. i know i’m lucky to have such a supportive partner.
i want more. is that greedy? i want my partner to suddenly stop with the feminine pronouns. i want to be out as genderqueer. not out as in telling people when it’s appropriate, but out as in being instantly recognized by strangers for what i am. i want people to know what i mean when i come out to them as genderqueer. sometimes, this closet is stifling.
i know this culture doesn’t really leave space for non-binary gender and i know that isn’t going to change anytime soon. i totally accept that. really, i do.
i think my discontent may be more about the times i haven’t come out when i could’ve and less about whether or not my partner occasionally calls me a girl or whether strangers assign me a binary gender. i think i would feel less stifled if i tried harder to be heard/seen/felt.
i need to come out to more people. i need to speak up for myself a little more often than i do. sure, sometimes it just isn’t appropriate, but why haven’t i come out to my landlady? she would be cool about it and she’s like family to me, so why haven’t i told her? why haven’t i come out to any of my teachers? why do i let so many people who might be down with my gender just see me as something i ain’t?
this has gotta change. now. today i will not stand by while people make erroneous assumptions about my gender. today i will totally do stuff.
update (june 26, 2011)
i came out to my landlady a few days ago— and she said, “i know, mx. punk”. dude! she said she didn’t know that i cared about pronouns, but that she’d already picked up on my otherness. she didn’t think i was female! she said so! and now she’s calling me a person instead of calling me a girl! holy flying caterpillars!
i’m too excited to even type properly hjdfhjdsf7bhfjfffd!!!!!!
update (two minutes later)
oh, yeah. a flying caterpillar isn’t really that absurd. i mean, if the caterpillar waits awhile it’ll grow up to be a butterfly. fuck. ok, so pretend i wrote, “holy flying porcupines” instead. ok? ok.
update (two seconds later)
porcupines don’t fly, right? am i right?