Queerish?

I feel like a poser. I love the queer community, love that they’ve had to carve new territory in the world of gender and sexuality, love the openness and flexibility and lack of assumptions that brings. I spend so much time now with queers of various stripes that I get weirded out by too much straightness. But when I’m not with my close friends, when I’m at a Pride event or a gay bar, I feel like a poser. I feel embarrassingly straight. I mean, I have a boyfriend. I’m mostly attracted to men. I didn’t grow up with the same sense of deep disconnect between my desires, my sense of self, and what society said was okay, that seems to give queer folk this profound sense of cameraderie with each other. I don’t have that. When I’m hanging out with queer people, I feel straight.

But I’m not straight. I’m polyamorous, for a start, and try explaining that to your fellow teachers at the preschool (I haven’t.) I’m only mostly attracted to men. I’m happy to have a female body, but there’s a strong masculine side to my identity. Socially, I’ve never really been a girl, and I have a hard time connecting with people who are. So when I’m around straight people, I do a lot of listening not talking, a lot of selective revelation (yep, I have a date tonight, yep, we’re going to a play, let me just fail to mention that I’m going with someone other than my boyfriend and this is not a problem for any of us), and a lot of feeling left out of conversations (Co-worker: “Men are so ridiculous! Can you believe he did that?” Other co-worker: “I know, it drives me crazy!” Me, in my head: That’s probably what I’d do too.) When I’m hanging out with straight people, I feel queer.

That’s really all I have to say on that subject. I feel a little bit neither-fish-nor-fowl, a little bit out of place wherever I go, a little bit lacking in community identification. It’s not the worst problem to have, by any means, but it does mean feeling like I’m always a guest and never at home.

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6 thoughts on “Queerish?

  1. I feel a little bit neither-fish-nor-fowl, a little bit out of place wherever I go, a little bit lacking in community identification. It’s not the worst problem to have, by any means, but it does mean feeling like I’m always a guest and never at home.

    I can relate to this 110%. I’m one of those odd people that generally accepts anyone/everyone unless otherwise provoked. I’ve always liked meeting new people and/or people who don’t necessarily fit the ‘norms’ that I was taught in my upbringing. My mom once had me convinced that people with tattoos were agents of the Devil. Mny thanks to my oldest cousin who, upon joining the USAF, acquired several tats, and he is certainly not evil πŸ™‚ But, then again, I have 3 myself, and she doesn’t know about them yet ;P

    I dunno. I feel like too much of my life was wasted on pre-conceived ideas taught by over-anxious parenting and/or snotty notions by teachers (I’ll never forget how one of my high school teachers freaked when I mentioned an openly-gay male friend.) The world is diverse and true friends are hard to find. Unless otherwise provoked, why not be pleasant to everyone?

    Totally happy to be reading your blog now, too πŸ™‚

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  2. For what it’s worth, I consider you to be about as queer as the day is long. To be polyamorous is to have a relationship style that is solidly outside the norm. Futhermore, you recognize that sexuality is experienced and expressed on a wide continuum and you enthusiastically embrace attactions falling outside the rigid category “straight.” Your lack of passionate attachment to the “straight” identity category and comfort with fluidity in both gender and sexual expression are, well… damn queer.

    If I didn’t know you and I saw you at Pride with your bf, I wouldn’t automatically assume you were straight. How am I supposed to know that your boyfriend is biologically male? You’re at Pride. Likelihood is, you’ve got something queer going on. If you show up and you’re not waving a sign with a Bible verse in my face, you’re family.

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