kfwyre's recent activity

  1. Comment on What's something you have always wanted to know about being LGBT (but were maybe afraid to ask)? in ~talk

    kfwyre
    (edited )
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    An Open-Ended Conclusion I'm not officially closing this thread or anything, so feel free to continue discussions or asking questions, but I feel that it has run through the majority of its...

    An Open-Ended Conclusion

    I'm not officially closing this thread or anything, so feel free to continue discussions or asking questions, but I feel that it has run through the majority of its lifespan, and I couldn't be happier about how it turned out.

    A big thanks to the panelists and all others who answered questions and shared your insights and experiences. You courteously and courageously shared your lives and yourselves with us, and we are richer for it. Thank you to those of you who asked questions. Your curiosity was the starting point for great answers and discussions. And thank you to anyone who read the thread or checked in on it. With all the myriad ways you can spend your time, you chose to spend some of it here. Thank you all for being with us.

    I appreciate everyone for extending the principle of charity and engaging with others with civility and care for their shared humanity. This is the kind of thread I wouldn't attempt elsewhere on the internet for fear of it going poorly or devolving into fighting. I very much appreciate that it didn't happen here.

    I can't speak for anyone else, but I know it means the world to me to be able to have a venue to speak about my experiences and identity without fear of harm, conflict, or retribution. It is not something I take for granted, as it wasn't too long ago in my life that putting myself out there as gay came with potential and actual threats to my safety. Even if you're someone who disliked or disagreed with my answers, I appreciate you for not meeting me and my colleagues with hostility.

    I hope this thread was an educational and affirming experience for everyone. When I first recruited panelists, I was worried I would only find one or two. Instead I was met with over 10, with additional LGBT people who joined the thread to answer once it was live. When I first launched the thread, I was worried there would be no questions and it would barely spark any discussion. Again, my fears were proven completely wrong. I see this thread as emblematic of the community we are creating here. Throughout all the questions, answers, and discussions here I have laughed, smiled, and even shed a few tears, but mostly my heart has swelled with pride for both my LGBT community as well as my Tildes compatriots.

    Tildes continues to be my favorite place on the internet. A heartfelt thanks to all of you who continue to make it a wonderful place to be.

    13 votes
  2. Comment on Feeding an ebook addiction in ~books

    kfwyre
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    If you use the Kindle platform, eReaderIQ is a great tool that will email you when desired books have price drops or sales. It's very useful and customizable.

    If you use the Kindle platform, eReaderIQ is a great tool that will email you when desired books have price drops or sales. It's very useful and customizable.

    5 votes
  3. Comment on What's something you have always wanted to know about being LGBT (but were maybe afraid to ask)? in ~talk

    kfwyre
    (edited )
    Link Parent
    Nonfiction The Trauma Cleaner by Sarah Krasnostein This is a rich, intimate profile of an Australian trans woman who runs a cleanup service that handles extreme cases (e.g. suicides, hoarders,...

    Nonfiction

    • The Trauma Cleaner by Sarah Krasnostein

    This is a rich, intimate profile of an Australian trans woman who runs a cleanup service that handles extreme cases (e.g. suicides, hoarders, etc.). It's deeply compelling and affecting.

    • Pretty much anything by David Sedaris

    Insightful wit, sardonic barbs, and a sort of warm misanthropy that's often low-key hilarious.

    • Love Wins by Debbie Cenziper & Jim Obergefell

    Chronicles the landmark United States Supreme Court case that legalized same-sex marriage nationwide.

    • Whipping Girl by Julia Serano

    An absolute sledgehammer of a book that tackles transmisogyny in an uncompromising and powerful way.

    • And the Band Played On by Randy Shilts

    I haven't read How to Survive a Plague yet, but I imagine this is a good companion piece. This is a comprehensive look at the beginning of the AIDS crisis from an on-the-ground perspective. Very thorough, and very well-written. The author later died of AIDS after publishing this, giving his work posthumous importance and resonance.

    • Borrowed Time by Paul Monette

    A heartwrenching chronicle of the author losing his partner to AIDS. Devastating.

    • Prayers for Bobby by Leroy Aarons

    A mother processes the suicide of her gay son. Also devastating.

    Comics

    • My Brother's Husband by Gengoroh Tagame

    This is a cute slice-of-life manga about a Canadian man visiting his late husband's brother in Japan. The brother is uncomfortable with his brother being gay and still mourning his loss. He's also a single father, raising his young daughter on his own. The book follows the story of the three of them together in Japan and balances being entertaining and serious. Fair warning: do not search up the author unless you're wanting some seriously NSFW content. This series was his first foray into non-erotic content.

    • What's Normal Anyway? by Morgan Boecher

    It's been a while since I've read this one so I can't remember exactly what I loved about it, but it was an insightful comic memoir series about being a trans male.

    • The Essential Dykes to Watch Out For by Alison Bechdel

    She's gotten a lot of (well-deserved) acclaim for Fun Home but in my mind, this is her magnum opus.

    • The Less Than Epic Adventures of TJ & Amal by E.K. Weaver

    Comic narrative of a gay road-trip romance. Nothing landmark, but it's well-drawn and told.

    • Stuck Rubber Baby by Howard Cruse

    I genuinely believe this would be in the esteemed graphic novel canon alongside titles like Maus and Persepolis if it had a better title and cover (I strongly dislike both). Covers an ensembles cast during the United States Civil Rights Movement, including several LGBT characters.

    3 votes
  4. Comment on What's something you have always wanted to know about being LGBT (but were maybe afraid to ask)? in ~talk

    kfwyre
    Link Parent
    Dykes to Watch Out For is so very good. Alison Bechdel was way ahead of her time. I bought the omnibus and read it a few years ago, and I was amazed at how many concepts that she brought up...

    Dykes to Watch Out For is so very good. Alison Bechdel was way ahead of her time. I bought the omnibus and read it a few years ago, and I was amazed at how many concepts that she brought up decades ago are still relevant and debated today. Plus, her characters feel rich and lived.

    4 votes
  5. Comment on What's something you have always wanted to know about being LGBT (but were maybe afraid to ask)? in ~talk

    kfwyre
    Link Parent
    What are your thoughts on, say, homo-, bi-, or pan-romantic asexuals being included under the umbrella? Would you include them on account of their romantic interests paralleling those of gay, bi-,...

    What are your thoughts on, say, homo-, bi-, or pan-romantic asexuals being included under the umbrella? Would you include them on account of their romantic interests paralleling those of gay, bi-, or pansexual people?

    4 votes
  6. Comment on What's something you have always wanted to know about being LGBT (but were maybe afraid to ask)? in ~talk

    kfwyre
    (edited )
    Link Parent
    If the person coming out to you is newly out or is less likely to have other supportive individuals in their life, explicit affirmation will likely go a long way. The people that openly supported...

    If the person coming out to you is newly out or is less likely to have other supportive individuals in their life, explicit affirmation will likely go a long way. The people that openly supported me when I first began making those very difficult initial disclosures made a world of difference for me, and their positive responses paved the way for me to feel more comfortable to open up to others.

    If the individual is more comfortable in themselves and likely has a larger support network, explicit affirmation becomes less necessary, though it is never unappreciated unless it's overkill. I'll always value kindness and support, but I've had people overdo it and treat me like I'm a unicorn or something fantastical, which is uncomfortable. I'm now that the point where I don't "come out" in my life so much as just mention my husband which puts the information out there like any other piece of self-disclosure. Doing so is a easy, simple disclosure which doesn't really get or warrant reactions at all, which is nice for how normal it feels.

    With regard to questions, asking is fine as long as you make sure the person is okay with being asked them first. Many of us relish the chance to answer questions about ourselves (case in point: this thread!), but many of us have also likely ended up in the "LGBT Hot Seat" where you get lots of questions, often from a relative stranger, many of which can feel invasive. I have no problem answering questions about myself, my experiences, and my sexuality, but I definitely have a problem starting off with those things with a relative stranger, or when I'm in a situation where conversation is supposed to stay light.

    Ultimately, compassion and empathy is king, and your read of an individual's feelings in the moment will likely far exceed generic advice on the internet. Should someone choose to come out to you, the best thing you can do is ask yourself why this particular person is coming out to you, and respond in kind. If it's casually dropped into the conversation, keep your response light and casual. If it's a more serious disclosure, treat it with commensurate gravity, anchoring your response in support, because they likely need it from you.

    7 votes
  7. Comment on Tildes' Valentine's Day Game Giveaway: Gaming Blind Dates! in ~games

    kfwyre
    Link Parent
    That is odd. I'll put you in for #2!

    That is odd. I'll put you in for #2!

    1 vote
  8. Comment on Tildes' Valentine's Day Game Giveaway: Gaming Blind Dates! in ~games

    kfwyre
    Link Parent
    I'm a Linux user myself, so I really should have thought of doing so in the first place. It's just that Proton is so good that I pretty much take for granted that I can play mostly anything.

    I'm a Linux user myself, so I really should have thought of doing so in the first place. It's just that Proton is so good that I pretty much take for granted that I can play mostly anything.

    3 votes
  9. Comment on What's something you have always wanted to know about being LGBT (but were maybe afraid to ask)? in ~talk

    kfwyre
    Link Parent
    I'll begin with pointing out that I'm cis, so I'm speaking as someone who's never felt uncomfortable in their assigned pronouns, which no doubt influences my perspective. With that said, I wrote...

    I'll begin with pointing out that I'm cis, so I'm speaking as someone who's never felt uncomfortable in their assigned pronouns, which no doubt influences my perspective.

    With that said, I wrote about neo-pronouns at length here. The first part of the comment isn't super relevant, but the last part directly addresses non-standard pronouns.

    In short, I think they introduce a lot of friction in language use that's avoidable by using "they", which is an elegant, pre-existing, built-in solution to gender-neutral pronouns. Many people don't realize that they're already comfortable with they in both a gender-neutral sense, as well as a singular one, and it's this relative invisibility that is "they's" greatest strength: it doesn't force speakers into metacognition that can inhibit the comfort and fluidity of their expressive language -- particularly speech.

    That said, some people like neo-pronouns specifically because they force that metacognition. I've seen people use them in an activist sense, where they specifically want to make speakers actively examine the language they're using. In this sense, neo-pronouns are quite effective.

    Ultimately, I'm not opposed to them, and if someone I know strongly preferred them, I would respect that person's wishes, but I think neo-pronouns are a much taller hill to climb than the much more convenient and recognizable "they".

    7 votes
  10. Comment on Tildes' Valentine's Day Game Giveaway: Gaming Blind Dates! in ~games

    kfwyre
    (edited )
    Link
    I will be ending enrollment in the Valentine's Day gifting event once this comment is 12 hours old. Signups are now closed. We have 16 gaming blind dates on offer from 6 generous matchmakers, and...

    I will be ending enrollment in the Valentine's Day gifting event once this comment is 12 hours old.

    Currently we have 15 gaming blind dates on offer and only 4 5 people interested in meeting them! There are 11 10 available games in your area! Message me now to get started and find your perfect match!

    Signups are now closed. We have 16 gaming blind dates on offer from 6 generous matchmakers, and 9 eager giftees waiting to meet their new companions.

    7 votes
  11. Comment on Tildes' Valentine's Day Game Giveaway: Gaming Blind Dates! in ~games

    kfwyre
    Link Parent
    Sounds good. I'll also include the Proton score as well, just so you can make an informed decision. I would hate for your gaming blind date to be one that you can't end up playing.

    Sounds good. I'll also include the Proton score as well, just so you can make an informed decision. I would hate for your gaming blind date to be one that you can't end up playing.

    3 votes
  12. Comment on Tildes' Valentine's Day Game Giveaway: Gaming Blind Dates! in ~games

    kfwyre
    Link Parent
    I'll include the platform compatibility with the genres. Do you want a Linux native game or would one that works well through Proton be good too?

    I'll include the platform compatibility with the genres. Do you want a Linux native game or would one that works well through Proton be good too?

    2 votes
  13. Comment on Tildes' Valentine's Day Game Giveaway: Gaming Blind Dates! in ~games

    kfwyre
    Link Parent
    Some of the other gifters are also gifting multiple games, so there's plenty of open spots!

    Some of the other gifters are also gifting multiple games, so there's plenty of open spots!

    1 vote
  14. Comment on What's something you have always wanted to know about being LGBT (but were maybe afraid to ask)? in ~talk

    kfwyre
    Link Parent
    Ugh. That subreddit is such an unpleasant surprise. So much rampant hatred. It hurts my heart to read it. This is not a criticism of you posting it. It's definitely relevant to the original...

    Ugh. That subreddit is such an unpleasant surprise. So much rampant hatred. It hurts my heart to read it.

    This is not a criticism of you posting it. It's definitely relevant to the original question and my comment. It's just that seeing their posts hit me particularly hard. This Tildes thread has been such a wonderful, affirming high point for me. I'm continually inspired by it. To then shift from something I find so wonderful and meaningful to something so rooted in prejudice and discrimination... I don't have words for how that hits my soul. They're darkening our beautiful rainbow.

    8 votes
  15. Comment on What's something you have always wanted to know about being LGBT (but were maybe afraid to ask)? in ~talk

    kfwyre
    Link Parent
    That would be an absolute amazing read! And I hear you on the size thing. We too change sizes, and not always at the same rate, so we have a sort of spread of available options in our closet that...

    That would be an absolute amazing read!

    And I hear you on the size thing. We too change sizes, and not always at the same rate, so we have a sort of spread of available options in our closet that we waver between -- sometimes synchronously, sometimes not.

    4 votes
  16. Comment on What's something you have always wanted to know about being LGBT (but were maybe afraid to ask)? in ~talk

    kfwyre
    Link Parent
    Absolutely agreed. I wasn't trying to say that only gay men should be concerned about this, but more that they're my area of greatest concern at the moment. You're right that it is imperative that...

    Absolutely agreed. I wasn't trying to say that only gay men should be concerned about this, but more that they're my area of greatest concern at the moment. You're right that it is imperative that everyone engage in safer sex practices.

    1 vote
  17. Comment on What's something you have always wanted to know about being LGBT (but were maybe afraid to ask)? in ~talk

    kfwyre
    (edited )
    Link Parent
    There are definitely some people who want to fracture the LGBT umbrella. I've heard people arguing that we should jettison the T, with some arguments rooted in outright transphobia and others...

    There are definitely some people who want to fracture the LGBT umbrella. I've heard people arguing that we should jettison the T, with some arguments rooted in outright transphobia and others coming from a neutral perspective questioning a perceived inconsistency (i.e. L, G, and B focus on sexual orientation while T focuses on gender identity). I've heard people talk about how odd it is that lesbians and gay guys are paired up, when they share neither a common gender nor common sexual/romantic interests. I've heard people talk about how the B shouldn't be included because they have the option to pass as heterosexual and therefore can benefit from privilege inaccessible to others. If we look at the extended acronym, there are dozens more arguments to be had, each of which is focused on identifying the "correct" delineation for which ingredients should get included in the stew and which ones should get left out on the counter.

    Exclusionary viewpoints such as these exist, though I would argue that they are rare, often given outsize influence due to their ability to spark conflict, and not widely accepted. In fact, many times I've heard them from non-LGBT people online, whose critiques of our community can range from overbearingly paternalistic to genuinely concerned about proper taxonomy.

    I get that, on paper, the LGBT conglomeration can seem an odd collection of disparate identities. In practice, however, there is genuine cohesion, particularly because there is a very large crossover between gender identity and sexual orientation from a societal perspective. In fact, it's only recently that we started strongly differentiating out "gender" from "sexuality". The overlap between the two becomes much more apparent if we instead roll back to the previously widespread terms of "sex" and "sexuality."

    For example, when I was growing up, my first introduction to what being "gay" meant had nothing to do with sexuality and everything to do with gender expression. "Gay" meant acting in unmanly ways, and that expression allegedly revealed something about someone's sexuality. I knew that being gay was "bad" long before I actually knew what being gay technically meant. That said, even sexuality wasn't immune from gendered criticism, because a long-standing prejudice against gay male sexuality has been that a man is "taking the role of a woman".

    The overlap of sex and sexuality is pretty much the uniting force that makes up our queer alphabet Pangaea. No matter our particular letter, we've all experienced discrimination and, sadly, likely trauma from transgressing the widely held societal standards regarding acceptable gender expression and sexuality. This is definitely changing, and it warms my heart to see LGBT kids growing up without oppression being the primary driver of their identity, but I can't ignore that it was the fire that forged us and pushed us together.

    As conditions have improved for LGBT people and society has become more accepting, the societal pressure that once pushed us into extreme cohesion has lessened. I see a lot more fractious conversations about the LGBT community now than I once did, as identity itself, rather than participation, seems to be given more of a premium. In some ways I see this as a growing pain. People now have the luxury of choosing their compatriots in the LGBT landscape, rather than eagerly taking any and all support regardless of the source. Our understanding of gender and sexuality has come a long way, and more and more people can adequately distinguish that, say, not all gay men are swishy and effeminate and, more importantly, those that are shouldn't be judged negatively for such expression anyway. I can see how better understanding and a more liberated society could find better lines and paths than those that came before. This kind of thing could cause the tectonic plates carrying our different identities to start to drift apart, bit by bit. Our supercontinent might eventually split up.

    I don't think it will though, because the other important component of this is history. Independent of any lofty intellectualizing about the nature of our experiences, there are our experiences themselves. The Stonewall riots were considered the beginning of the gay liberation movement, and who carried them out? Butch lesbians, effeminate young men, drag queens, male prostitutes, transgender people, and homeless youth. It's not that these individuals all shared an identity, but they all shared an experience. They were outcasts, maligned for who they were, and seeking refuge in those who chose to meet them with kindness rather than condemnation.

    Speaking from my own experience, I joined an LGBT community organization in a very conservative area when I was younger. We had lots of different people of varying identities, and the idea of fracturing us along those lines never even crossed our minds because we were all pretty much just clinging to each other for survival. It didn't matter whether the person next to me was trans or bi or genderqueer or just kinky; all that mattered was that they were next to me rather than opposed to me. Any port in a storm! The makeup of our group wasn't determined by an identity census and "proper" vetting of queerness but by de facto membership based solely on the desire to be part of us in the first place. No one was joining our group accidentally or without significant forethought, and everyone who was there was someone we welcomed them with open arms, knowing how important that same courtesy felt to us. We had several straight members, and I never once heard any opposition to their inclusion based on their identities. In a culture of severe oppression, we were happy to have any support from any source, and we weren't about to cast someone out, knowing what lay in wait for them outside the safety of our community.

    I've shared elsewhere in this thread that I like the umbrella term "queer" over the acronym "LGBT" because I feel it more directly captures that our union is more than the sum of its parts. "LGBT" treats us like we're compartmentalized. It implicitly begs the question of what overarching quality, if any, we share. Sure it shows us standing side by side, but it also calls attention to the separations between us. It highlights that we're, seemingly, fundamentally different. "Queer", on the other hand, carves out a single space for us. Whether it's something that we identify as, something we feel, or something we do, it lets us operate and organize under one roof, on equal footing, and with space for all. I use "LGBT" as a linguistic stand-in for "queer" because the Tildes community prefers it, and I think it has its recognizable advantages, but when I talk about our community, "queer" captures the intangibles for me better than "LGBT" ever can.

    While I certainly can't speak for all other LGBT people, this idea of unity and community support is much of our lifeblood, regardless of which label its given. Togetherness and connecting with others are part and parcel of who we are, and I would say these likely far outweigh the divisive conversations about who should or shouldn't have the keys to our kingdom. I don't know that things will stay this way in the future, but right now I think values of unity and inclusion are still given a premium, at least among a lot of the queer individuals I know.

    12 votes
  18. Comment on What's something you have always wanted to know about being LGBT (but were maybe afraid to ask)? in ~talk

    kfwyre
    Link Parent
    Totally fine! I welcome any and all voices. I gathered the panelists simply because I wanted to ensure that there would be people around to answer questions besides myself, but the thread is by no...

    Hey! Although I did not sign up to be a panelist, I am a cis lesbian and I thought these questions were nice so I wanted to answer. I hope that is OK!

    Totally fine! I welcome any and all voices.

    I gathered the panelists simply because I wanted to ensure that there would be people around to answer questions besides myself, but the thread is by no means limited to them. Answer away. We're happy to have you!

    6 votes
  19. Comment on Tildes' Valentine's Day Game Giveaway: Gaming Blind Dates! in ~games

    kfwyre
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    I realized I didn't put myself down as a gifter, so you can all count me in on that part. Also, please sign on, giftees! We have some very generous gifters lined up and need people who are...

    I realized I didn't put myself down as a gifter, so you can all count me in on that part.

    Also, please sign on, giftees! We have some very generous gifters lined up and need people who are interested in receiving games!

    4 votes