How to explain your genderfreeness

Discussions related to nonbinary experiences, identity and expression. 'On topic' discussions that don't fit anywhere else.

How to explain your genderfreeness

Postby Xier » Sat Jul 26, 2014 11:36 am

Hi everyone,
last night I just couldn't sleep and I thought about how to explain that I don't have a gender. What other categories do exist that a lot of people fit into but some don't?
I came up with people who miss some enzyme so that they cannot digest milk.
And there are people who do not have any nationality, for example because they were born on a ship travelling the ocean.
And there are people who cannot understand music. They simply cannot perceive music like other people, they don't hear any structure because their brain is somehow different.
I feel that I do not have any gender at all and that I cannot really feel what it means to have a gender. But it's difficult to explain to most people because - no matter if they are cis* or trans* or whatever - most people still do have a gender, even if it might be non-binary. But I feel best when I place myself outside this category.
Can you help me out here? Do you know that feeling? How to explain it?
Love,
flo*
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Re: How to explain your genderfreeness

Postby Mal » Tue May 05, 2015 4:32 pm

I learned from coming out to my friends that many people mistake nonbinary as bigender, which is actually fluctuating between feminine and masculine tendencies. Nonbinary is very different. It's about not identifying as male or female, but neither. That's pretty much how you can explain it to people. Hope I helped! :)
"Life is the flower for which love is the honey." -Victor Hugo
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Re: How to explain your genderfreeness

Postby Sisyphus » Thu May 14, 2015 1:00 pm

I think, personally that non-binary is broader than being agender or gender free. It can include a wide variety of gender presentations which can include masculine and feminie tendencies. It can include being agender and genderfree, and for some people it can include being bigender because their fluctuation or gender fluid nature is not in a specific gender box of the two in the binary.

I've found for myself trying to describe what it is to be non-binary, including the portion of me that is genderfree can be really difficult to wrap heads around. I want to shy away from describing it as a deficiency, like lacking an enzyme to digest milk, or people who can't understand music, or don't have a nationality because they were born on a ship. When I look at that I see things that the mainstream genderbinary (people who can digest milk, people who can understand music, people who have a nationality) may misunderstand as something broken, to be pitied for the lack of and to be fixed.
Things I've actually heard in my life:
"I love dairy! I don't know what I would do if I couldn't eat it!"
"I can't digest dairy, I don't have that enzyme, but I love it so much I eat it anyway, consequences be damned"
"I really wish I could eat dairy"
"I pity people who can't eat dairy."
"I don't know what I could do if I couldn't hear music. I think I'd kill myself."
"That person heard music for the first time! Look at how the world opened up for them!"
"Music is the food of the soul. People without an appreciation are missing out on humanity."
"What that parent did to that kid so they don't have a nationality is atrocious! Look at all the things that kid can't do now because their parent didn't do something that was easy and simple!"
"Keeping your kid from having identifying documents prevents them from having citizenship which hurts them. Thats child abuse."
"If you go out to sea to have your kid so they don't have a home country, you're part of a cult, crazy or abusive."

I think its definitely a thing that needs lots of conversation to try to come up with solid language in a culture that does in fact treat genderfree like the above, and its really hard not to internalize it that way, or really easy to frame it that way for people who can't wrap their minds around it.

Hmmmmm.....what would I suggest....

Maybe being gender free is like being infrared in a world where people only consider colors in the visible spectrum. But then thats like equating gender free with a gender. Lacking color would be black or white (depending on your scientific perspective (which is a whole different philosophical argument), and black and white has social connotations.

Or perhaps its like saying that some birds have feathers meant for more water exposure and some birds have feathers meant for more dry air exposure (like binary), but I don't have feathers, or I don't have wings.

I would really have to think about this to try to come up with something people can understand but is positive
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Re: How to explain your genderfreeness

Postby QueenXenon » Sat May 23, 2015 8:02 pm

I thought bigender was being masculine and feminine simultaneously and gender-fluid was fluctuating between the two?
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Re: How to explain your genderfreeness

Postby Sisyphus » Fri May 29, 2015 3:03 am

I've found in my travels that there are variations on the definitions. For example, I recently (about a week before I read this post) talked with someone who referred to themselves as bigender because they fluctuate between the masculine and feminine. My current assessment is that, because it has only been of a recency, in comparison to the establishment of the structure and vocabulary of the binary, in community and adapted language, that self-descriptions and identifications between peoples, communities, digital and realworld geography, age groups etc. and the intersection of them lead to multiple ways of looking at each identifier.
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Re: How to explain your genderfreeness

Postby CaptainProme » Wed Jul 29, 2015 6:04 am

You don't have a gender or a gender doesn't have you? For me I see men and they
they react to me with energy that I don't possess. A defensive energy that I
don't have. I have to be careful of it. Was at the store yesterday, a man and
children that I was going to walk past but I felt it so I went down the isle.
I'm not gonna walk thru and offend them. My lack of energy undoubtedly scares
them. Oh, and this ends up being called paranoia. Are you Flo, my daughter? Flo
Progressive is my daughter created out of the Geico Caveman, for which my
personality was taken after moving to Washington State seeking caves. Flo,
I do know her actual name, is now doing both genders in commercials. Basically,
the whole family and characters on the radio. So how is it possible to identify
with a gender when the gender possesses something that you do not have? I'm male.
Not a man. I can check male, but I can't because checking male signifies that
I'm a man and I'm not. If I changed to female which doesn't make sense to me
yet I might be more accepted, I would no longer be considered non-binary, in my
opinion.
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Re: How to explain your genderfreeness

Postby Edgar_Allan_Whoa » Mon Aug 10, 2015 3:04 pm

I sometimes tell people that my gender is 'human'.
I'm (a) genderhuman, attracted to other humans :lol:
My partner likes to define herself as 'gender nonchalant', which I love.

If deflecting the question doesn't work then I will say that I was DFAB and thus I've had 'gender:female' experiences, but that is more about how the world experiences me than how I experience myself. I used to call myself an 'oddbod', which still kind of expresses my feelings about it. I did think I was the only one, though. Glad I'm not.

I sometimes think about it as though a recruitment consultant is trying to test whether I have a 'Type A personality' (driven, stressed, ambitious) or a 'Type B personality' (relaxed, reflective etc) when actually I'm neither. I'm an artist, darling!

Or... if someone asks whether you're a 'saver' or a 'splurger' and you reply:
"Let's abolish capitalism."


Big love,

E.A. Whoa
Genderhuman
Genderwhat?
Gendermeh
Genderwhoa!
"For physicists, one billion years is not much different from one second. It's just a number. It's an extremely long number, but I can quantify the process."

Dr Kostya Trachenko, London pitch drop experiment
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Re: How to explain your genderfreeness

Postby cosmic-marigolds » Wed Oct 07, 2015 5:51 am

It's been about 10 months since I've made the discovery that I'm agender, although I've known I'm non-binary(or at least not a girl) since I was 15. I typically just tell people that my answer to the question "are you a boy or a girl?" is no.

But since I go to a relatively progressive college, a lot less people ask me "are you a boy or a girl?" and a lot more ask me "how do you identify?" so I need a new angle lol.
"My name is blurryface, and I care what you think"
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