Let’s talk…

About gender, gender roles and sexuality. I’m far from an expert, though I do try to keep up. I’m part of the LGBTQ community.

I read a blog post the other day comparing being a tomboy to being gender fluid. The writer went so far as to encourage people to have a “gender fluid attitude” and later stated “we’re all a bit queer”. Everything about this post was incorrect and offensive. So, rather than rant and criticise more, I’m going to share some basic knowledge about gender, gender role and sexuality.

Gender, Gender Identiy and Biological Sex

Here’s an article I found from Planned Parenthood which outlines the differences between them clearly and concisely. I couldn’t begin to put these concepts together in such a nicely written way.

https://www.plannedparenthood.org/learn/gender-identity/sex-gender-identity

Gender Roles

I see gender roles as nothing more than societal norms of behavior. As a society, we tend to criticise one another for going too far outside of the stereotypical gender roles. Let’s take a look at some photos and talk about them.

tomboy #lesbian | Tomboy chic outfits, Tomboy fashion, Tomboy outfits
Here we have a classic tomboy. She’s defying what a girl is supposed to look like. Is she cis-gender, gender fluid, TG? Don’t know till you ask her!
Women's Fashion Solid Off Shoulder Strapless Mini Dress – Veooy
Classically feminine clothing. Once again, we can’t know anything about the wearer until we talk to them. Standard assumption is a heterosexual, cis-gender female.
Under the Radar: Terminator: The Sarah Connor Chronicles | Linda ...
Sarah Connor in Terminator defies all societal gender role norms, yet she is very much a heterosexual woman!
The Rise of the Metrosexual Male - Society Magazine
Here’s a man we’d term Metrosexual because he’s doing a cleansing face mask and probably plucks his eyebrows. He’s breaking traditional gender roles, but this does not impact his identified gender or sexuality.
Pin on my dream life
A man who crossdresses isn’t necessarily gender fluid, gay, queer, or transgender. He may simply be a man who enjoys dressing in stereotypical women’s clothing.
MANLY MEN - Home | Facebook
Lastly, I present the manly man. One of the perfect specimens of what “a man should look like”. Is he gay, straight, gender queer, TG, gender fluid? Never know until you ask him.
Male preschool teachers in short supply | Stuff.co.nz
Male preschool teachers are among the mostly harshly judged for crossing traditional gender roles, yet their chosen occupation says nothing more about them than a love of children. Being a father is “normal” but taking care of children is not. Many would call him terrible things.
A female construction worker swinging a sledgehammer - Stock Photo ...
A female construction worker with a sledge hammer? How does this change her gender identity or sexual orientation? It doesn’t! She’s merely breaking societal norms.
Female doctor and male nurse making rounds, using digital tablet ...
A male nurse and female doctor. What? Once again breaking societal expectations of gender roles. Their occupation doesn’t change their gender identity.
Hot Pink: Extreme Femdom Tales of Forced Feminization - Kindle ...
As a BDSM and sex blogger I’d be remiss not to mention the biggest gender role twister there is. The dominant woman and the submissive man. That alone is bending the gender role rules. Add in forced feminization and we’ve got a mess on our hands from a societal standpoint. Once again, gender identity plays no direct role in this.

Clothing, style, hobbies, interests and a whole wide variety of other things have NOTHING to do with gender identity. Gender identity is the gender (or lack there of) YOU identify with.

Sexuality

Sexuality is who or what sexually stimulates you. I’ve also heard the definition include who you experience romantic love with.

I’m not even going to try to list the various labels for sexuality. What I am going to say is that often when a person engages in behaviors and modes of dressing that are outside of the societal norm they are attributed to their sexuality.

How many times have you heard someone ask which one is the “man” or “woman” in a homosexual relationship? My mother asked me this more than once when I was actively dating women and bringing my group of LGBTQ friends around. She got more education than she wanted!

Wrapping up

I haven’t put a dent in the subject. FFS, there are entire college degrees on all levels dedicated to Gender Studies. My knowledge is elementary compared to what’s out there.

I highly encourage people to be open to learning more. Knowledge brings us towards understanding, compassion and kindness.

Before you jump into writing about a subject as loaded as this one, PLEASE take the time to educate yourself. Talk at length with many people in various parts of the LGBTQ community. Ask questions. Read, read, read! Getting information from those living it is very different than what you’ll find in a Google search or a dictionary definition.

I turned back to my community before writing this for a refresher from those closer to the gender bends than myself. I talked to my gay friends and TG friends. I read a lot before I took to writing. I also isolated the confusion the writer had between gender identity and gender roles.

Half baked ideas and understanding are sometimes worse than being completely ignorant.

Thanks for reading. Comments appreciated.

9 thoughts on “Let’s talk…

  1. I think you’re totally right. A lot of things I like wearing – like leather strap shoes, strap bracelets, style clothes people would assume my nature by. Though they can assume it if they want by comfort shoes and skater dresses that I love, too…

    Liked by 2 people

    1. People are going to assume. There’s a way to do it that’s not rude and offensive.

      I’m often challenged about being bisexual because I live an outwardly “straight” life. I’m feminine and I’m married to a man, so therefore…..

      Liked by 1 person

  2. So well written! We tend to classify people just because the ‘society’ defines boundaries and criticise for apparently breaking the rules that the same society has placed and defined.

    Liked by 3 people

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