It has now been around half a year since I came out as non-binary genderqueer, and I feel like it’s time for a little update. I’ve learned a whole lot after I allowed myself to be who I am, without hiding anything or suppressing a part of my identity.
When I first came out as NB I decided to keep my she/her pronouns. I have later discovered that I’m actually just as comfortable with he/him or they/them. I think the reason I chose to hold on to my old pronouns earlier was to not make anyone uncomfortable with having to readjust. This is still something that is important to me, because making other people uncomfortable makes me uncomfortable, which really doesn’t serve anyone. That’s why I decided to let other people choose what pronouns they use for me, because I like all of them. Most people use she/her out of habit, while a few uses they/them, and I’m comfortable with that.
When it comes to other words used to describe me, I have discovered that I’m ok with some of the feminine terms, while others – not so much. Words that describe my relationship to someone in my family, like daughter or sister feels ok to me, while words that directly describes my gender (wrongly), like lady, girl, female or woman I’m not so comfortable with.
Another thing that has changed since I first came out is that I no longer feel a need to prove my gender to anyone through the way I dress or present. In the beginning I was overcompensating for my feminine sides and constantly worrying that people wouldn’t take me seriously if I didn’t present androgynous. Now I am getting more confident in myself and I know that my gender is valid no matter how I’m presenting on any given day, and I do not have to prove myself to anyone. Gender is not so much about how I look as it is about my internal feelings and experiences.
Girls don’t have to wear pink dresses, boys don’t have to be tough as fuck and genderqueer people don’t have to present androgynous to have their gender be valid. To challenge this norm is to move the world forward and expand people’s acceptance of diversity. I know that I’m far from the only person that has another experience of gender than the binary male or female, and I know how important representation of gender diversity has been for me. I realize that I can be myself fearlessly in all my colors, and at the same time contribute to making other people feel represented, validated and less alone. And that my dear friends, is reason enough to love and be proud of myself. 🌈❤️
I celebrated pride this weekend with my friends and I had the best off times! But when I wanted to share pictures from the celebration on Instagram, my post got deleted. Why you may ask? Because it contained female nipples.
Nothing sexual about the picture, just some people with breasts posing for a picture, some with nipple covers, one without. All looking proud and happy.
Apparently Instagrams policy says “for a variety of reasons, we don’t allow nudity on Instagram. […] It also includes some photos of female nipples, but photos of post-mastectomy scarring and women actively breastfeeding are allowed.”
Even if there exist loopholes in instagrams policy for female individuals to post their nipples on instagram (like wearing a see-through top), that is not the point. It’s the signal that is sent by setting these rules and restrictions based on gender that is the problem. And what that does to people’s feelings about their own bodies.
Today I feel like women are constantly being told to love their bodies, and I think self-love is an amazingly positive focus in this current time. But at the same time women are told to hide their bodies from the same social media platforms that guys can freely post pictures of themselves topless. How is that NOT gender discrimination?
Hide all the female breast like it was not what fed us and kept us alive when we were all so vulnerable and new in the world. Like breast where nothing more than something to look at and get aroused.
I cannot help to see this as just another way women are oppressed and discriminated against by a patriarchal society. An oppression that has lasted for way to long and that we as a modern society should have been way beyond by now. I hope and believe that I get to experience in my lifetime a world that could not give two flying fucks about female nipples on instagram. Maybe one day when I’m 90 years old I will tell my granddaughter about this and she will be just as baffled as I was when I first heard about a time when women couldn’t vote.
Also, I am wondering if these rules instagram has made about who gets to show their nipples and who doesn’t, affects me as a non-binary identifying individual. If anyone has any experience with that I would like to hear from you.
Lots on non-discriminating love and hugs to all of you ❤️🏳️🌈
You know how sometimes life just hits you in the face with a brick? Well that is kinda what has happened in my life lately and I’m just working on holding my head above water in the middle of a stormy ocean of thoughts.
I find it easier to talk about hard things when I get some distance to the issue, and not while I’m in the middle of it. It’s easier to see the complete picture once the fog clears up a bit and time passing offers me a new perspective.
Experiencing some traumatic events recently has brought up a lot of stuff that I had put the lid on, which in turn have caused me a lot on anxiety. I’m currently working on sorting through everything and helping myself by talking about my feelings and experiences with close friends and family. And while I do not feel ready to open up about everything to the whole world quite yet, there is something that I feel it’s time to share.
Which for those of you that are not familiar with the term means that your gender identity is not exclusively feminine or masculine, but a combination (or for some people: neither). In my case my experience of gender can vary from day to day, but generally I tend to be a little more on the masculine side.
I find it difficult to change my pronouns right now and have decided to continue using she/her for the current time being. That might change in the future, but it might also just remain the same. I just know that this is how I feel now and have been feeling for some years. I have struggled with dysphoria on and of since around the time I became a teenager, but never really been able to grasp what that feeling of something “not being right” was. Now I know, and I will no longer let it consume me.
This doesn’t really affect anything about what you have to call me. My name will still be Jeanett and my pronouns remains the same for now. I just needed to come clear about this to have one less thing to think about. I want to embrace this part of myself and not have it be a source of anxiety. And what better time to do so than right now as the Pride week kicks off here in Bergen?
If anyone is left feeling confused after reading this or is curious to know more, please do not hesitate to ask questions. I will not get offended by your questions – just happy to share and have interesting conversations that we all can learn something from.
Lots of love ❤️🌈