54 votes

Pride Month at Tildes: #1 - Introductions and Playlist

Event Overview

June 1st marks the beginning of Pride Month for many countries around the world, and we're going to have our own little celebration here on Tildes!

I have come up with ten different discussion topics centered on sharing, celebrating, and understanding queer life and experiences. I will post one every four days throughout the month of June.

Everyone is welcome to participate. This includes allies! You do not need to identify as LGBT in order to join in the topics. Also, I will use "queer" and "LGBT" interchangeably as umbrella terms to refer to all minority sexualities and gender identities. These are intended to be explicitly inclusive.


Schedule

I won't reveal everything upfront, but with each post I will give a teaser for what's next:

June 1st: Introductions and Playlist
June 4th: (teaser: you might have to look back in time a little bit)
June 7th:
June 10th:
June 13th:
June 16th:
June 19th:
June 22nd:
June 25th:
June 28th:


#1 - Introductions and Playlist

This is the inaugural post -- the beginning of our little month-long discussion topic Pride Parade!

There are two tasks for this post:

  1. Introduce yourself to everyone and share any information about yourself that you feel comfortable sharing. Who are you? How do you identify? What’s important for people to know about you? Are you excited about anything? Are you doing anything for Pride Month IRL?

  2. A good Pride Month needs a good Pride Playlist! Link to some of your favorite queer-themed songs or tracks from LGBT artists so that we can crowdsource an awesome collection of music to listen to throughout the month.


If for whatever reason you would not like to see these topics in your feed, add pride month at tildes to your personal tag filters.

49 comments

  1. [2]
    Tuna
    Link
    Thank you for spearheading this topic. A little introduction first. I am a bi and trans woman in her late twenties. To preface this, I grew up in a very liberal household. My parents were sexually...
    • Exemplary

    Thank you for spearheading this topic.

    A little introduction first. I am a bi and trans woman in her late twenties.

    To preface this, I grew up in a very liberal household. My parents were sexually open and experienced. Nonetheless, this was not talked about. Not that it was taboo, just not something they brought up.
    When I grew up queer topics were foreign concepts. There were the straights (the status quo) and a few people outside of our social circles were gay. "Are you gay" was a negative rebuttal we used, because no one wanted to be gay and therefore different. I was asked this question seriously a few times, to ascertain my sexuality, because I did not show typical male behaviours throughout my puberty. I always answered "no, I like girls", which was completely true and since you were either gay or straight it was the more fitting box. I have already heard about bisexuality, but at that time it was something abstract, nothing anyone actually is.
    From around 13 years old sexuality gave way for more pressing matters. It was at this time I started developing depression. At the time I did not know why. There was no traumatic experience, my life was still the same. Waking up in the morning became torture, I withdrew socially and let time pass as fast as possible.
    It was not until ~16 years old, when I grasped the reigns of my life again and moved forward. My best friend at the time helped me a lot, when he dragged my ass thrice a week up to the gym, which rebuild some confidence. I was still depressed, but at least I moved forward. I went to university, started my first therapy and got antidepressants to allow me to finally sleep at night. 2 years later, I got some to allow me to leave my bed in the morning. At this time I finally had the mental capacity to figure myself out. It was then when I labeled myself as bisexual. 2018 was the first pride march I was on.

    I switched my field of study and moved cities during covid. An overdue choice, looking back. I restarted therapy and found my current therapist. While I had my depression under control, life was still not worth living. I only endured for my loved ones.
    I've gotten more confident in myself, but it all came crashing down when repressed memories of my teenage years resurfaced. It was around the time my depression took root. I struggled with who I was and who I want to be. I questioned if I am trans or not and struggled to decide. Mind you, at that time transness was foreign so the only source of information was the internet and even big brother had nil idea of what defines a trans person. The only definite answer it gave "you have to have crippling dysphoria". I did not have complete disgust when seeing my body, so the answer was clear: I could not be trans. So I decided then and there that I would become the manliest man out there and surpress everything that indicates otherwise. And so I did. I became a hollow shell driven by two principles: survive every day and become the pride example of a man (thankfully toxic traits towards others never was part of the goal). Emotions were deemed dangerous, so I learned to surpress them. I still lack the ability to discern nuances between them.

    So I relieved that time of my life. I came to terms with being transgender. Seeing myself as a woman was the first time I was looking forward to my future. A future that was not bleak and tormented by waking up every morning, but colourful . I felt like a bird imprisoned in a cage of its own making, which is finally let out and free to roam the world.

    Make no mistake. I still have depression; I still struggle with everyday life, but I've seen the light at the end of a long and dark tunnel. Something to strive towards; Something to look forward to.

    This new angle on myself gave me the tool to get to the bottom of my inner self. Who I am. What I want in life. What makes me happy. Why I am the way I am.
    I am still not at the end of figuring myself out. I still have the aha moments when I make sense of another facette of my past.

    So what do I look forward to during pride month? Nothing specific. The pride march in my current city is sadly a bit meager, but I look forward to it nonetheless. As faulty as the pride month is, it is absolutely essential for our kids. I long for a world where sexualities and gender identities are not used as insults; where children are not ostracised for being themselves. It teaches people about others and gives them the vocabulary to figure themselves out.
    We've already made big strives towards that goal and every pride march is a sign that our society is moving forward, towards an inclusive future.

    Oh boy, I did not intend to write that much...
    To close this comment of: be proud of who you are and be kind to one another.

    P.S. If there are any questions (or if you need someone to talk to) just comment or send a private message.

    19 votes
    1. Tuna
      Link Parent
      I forgot to answer the playlist question o.o Resistance by Muse perfectly captures the yearning and sense of forbiddeness of queer love. All of their songs are written gender neutral, which makes...

      I forgot to answer the playlist question o.o

      Resistance by Muse perfectly captures the yearning and sense of forbiddeness of queer love. All of their songs are written gender neutral, which makes it very refreshing.

      8 votes
  2. [3]
    arqalite
    (edited )
    Link
    Trigger warning: suicidal ideation, physical abuse (it ends well, promise!) Hey, I'm arqalite - I'm 24, from Eastern Europe, and I identify as a cis gay man. Maybe very softly bisexual, but I...
    • Exemplary

    Trigger warning: suicidal ideation, physical abuse (it ends well, promise!)

    Hey, I'm arqalite - I'm 24, from Eastern Europe, and I identify as a cis gay man. Maybe very softly bisexual, but I rarely find myself attracted to women so it's easier to call me gay.

    My journey of learning who I am, and living the way I felt was most true to me took a while, and had its ups and downs. I knew from kindergarten that my interest in women was minimal at best, and tried to dodge any questions of "do you like any girl?" or "who's your crush?" as best as I could.

    In middle school I learned that gay people existed, and shortly after, it hit me that I was one of them. Don't remember how, either because I was discreetly glancing at my classmates in the locker room a bit too often, or because I started watching gay porn around that time.

    My identity as a gay man solidified in high school when one of my best girl friends asked me out on a date. I didn't have the heart to just reject her, so I came out to her. She was either the first or second person who knew, don't remember. She took it well, although she was a bit hurt because she mustered so much courage to ask me out only to realize she was barking up the wrong tree. We remained good friends and she helped me judge potential Grindr dates, lol.

    Later on I told all my closest friends, but it wasn't enough. Staying in the closet took a toll on me mentally, especially after falling in love with a classmate who pretended to be bi, only to learn he was actually homophobic and doing it as a joke. Depression hit me hard and I considered hanging myself a handful of times. One day I was so angry with life I wanted to go through with it, but I got so hyperfixated on my anger that I went on autopilot and power-walked home instead of going to the forest. I interpreted that as a sign from the universe that maybe it wasn't my time yet, so I never tried again.

    After I turned 18, I had an extensive argument with my parents because I quit driving school (I hate driving with a passion, besides the fact that I was a liability on the road - I panicked in a roundabout and took my hands off the steering wheel. My instructor wanted to murder me on the spot for that.)

    For some reason, that argument, coupled with my depression, snapped something in me and I just decided I'll come out to them and get it done. No, I'll come out to everyone - either someone murders me, or I'll get away with it, either option was fine at that point.

    My parents cried when I said out loud "I'm attracted to men". We sat in silence for a bit, and I went up to my room, joined my friends Discord and played some League of Legends while venting extensively to my friends.

    That's when all of a sudden my dad barges into my room, drags me out of my chair and throws me on the floor. He gave me an ultimatum - either I go back in the closet and find a girlfriend, or I leave the house immediately and never come back.

    I remember telling him to go fuck himself and attempting to punch him for throwing me on the floor. He parried and retaliated, and soon I was in fetal position while he kept attacking me. He stopped once my mom started screaming and crying in the doorway at the sight of what was happening.

    I was fine, save for some bruises and pain between my ribs, but my hatred for that man was infinite at that point. I hated him already for a lot of things, this was the last straw. Luckily I had enough self control to not go after a knife.

    I calmed down and helped my mom calm down too, then she left the room to scream at my dad while I put back my headphones and tell my friends what the fuck just happened. I somehow managed to mute my mic before the altercation happened, so they heard nothing.

    The next day I grabbed all my legal documents, some spare cash and my debit card, rummaged through my mom's documents to see if I had something else important in there, and went to my best friend's house and left them there for safekeeping.

    When I returned home my dad told me we will go to see a psychologist immediately, but luckily he didn't know any, so the job of finding one fell on me. Bad idea.

    I searched the web for LGBT-friendly therapists but didn't find any satisfactory results. There were a few, but there were no reviews or online feedback about them, so I had no idea how they'll act during the session.

    Desperate, I went on my classroom's Facebook group and I came out to everyone and asked for help finding a therapist. I did receive some words of support which was massively appreciated, and they didn't treat me any differently after.

    One classmate managed to find a children's therapist that was part of a well-known LGBT organization. I called to ask if she'd be willing to see me and my parents and she said yes immediately. I was relieved, and told my parents. I faked some slight reaction of "hopefully she can fix me" but I knew the truth, she'd do the exact opposite.

    And boy was it glorious. We started the session, my dad started rambling about how being gay was disgusting and wrong and everything bad ever, calling me filthy and all kinds of names. The therapist looked at him, pulled out a book, and read out a paragraph that was pretty much the exact opposite of what he said. My dad was furious, not expecting her to not only take my side, but affirm my identity and telling him he was wrong, not me.

    She suggested he document himself a bit more and some exercises to be more tolerant but he wasn't having any of it. He stormed out, so me and my mom thanked her for the 15 minutes and paid for the full hour we scheduled.

    The trip back home was silent. A bit too silent. He mumbled something about her being a "dumb bitch" but nothing else. Even at home, we never brought up the subject again.

    My mom obviously knew I didn't magically become straight so we still talked about it in secret, and I tried to help her understand. Luckily, the more she learned, the more accepting she became. Nowadays she still doesn't comprehend the idea of being attracted to the same gender, but she knows this is the life I am going to live and she loves me unconditionally. I think we actually became closer after all that.

    My dad, well he repressed everything. I'm sure he still knows I'm actively, ragingly gay, but on the outside he pretends I never came out, or that I'm asexual.

    My mom and I agreed to not tell my little sister, who didn't know anything. Nowadays she also thinks I'm aroace or something. I was scared of coming out to her eventually because at some point she had some homophobic moments, but as she grew she became more accepting of it. Now she has a lesbian friend, a bisexual friend, and a trans classmate (who wants to use he/him pronouns but kept his birth name, so my sister constantly trips over herself when talking about him, but she's learning. He also doesn't mind she/her pronouns, as he's aware he's not going to transition in any meaningful way until he turns 18) - so I'm sure when she'll learn that I'm gay, nothing will change about us. Maybe we'll get even closer since we could fawn over male K-pop idols together.

    Since then, life has been alright. I dated around, kissed a cute guy, got into a relationship, left that relationship with some trauma and gave my mom some of it too when I disappeared for 48 hours to revenge-cheat on my ex with a guy that seemed to love me but wasn't interested for a relationship. I was broken-hearted but pressed on, got a good job and eventually found by current boyfriend, who I hope to one day also call my husbear, just like kfwyre did.

    Nowadays, I'm happy. I enjoy my current relationship, we travel a lot, I got promoted at work, and I started rediscovering my hobbies. I got back into music, as some of you might have seen my posts on the recurring creative thread. So I look forward to what the future brings.

    Oh yeah, a gay song. When I think of Pride I just have to sing Lady Gaga's Born This Way. To me it's an anthem to who I am and a constant reminder that I don't need to change anything about myself unless I truly want to do so. We're born this way, baby.

    Also I couldn't celebrate Pride without going on a SOPHIE binge. She defined LGBT music to me and I respect her as a skilled creative who could have done so much more, had the universe not taken her away from us so soon. RIP SOPHIE, we'll dance the night away for you, always and forever.

    14 votes
    1. [2]
      kfwyre
      Link Parent
      I'm floored. Thank you for sharing. I'm so sorry you had to go through that, but I am also so glad you're in a better place now. Also SOPHIE is incredible. "Immaterial" is such a bright, vibrant...

      I'm floored. Thank you for sharing. I'm so sorry you had to go through that, but I am also so glad you're in a better place now.

      Also SOPHIE is incredible. "Immaterial" is such a bright, vibrant celebration of queer life. After she passed the song took on a whole other layer of meaning for me.

      5 votes
      1. arqalite
        Link Parent
        She is, her whole album is. Brand New World/Pretend World is such a masterpiece, it has a roughness that just feels like pure self-expression to me. Although some people don't really like it.

        She is, her whole album is. Brand New World/Pretend World is such a masterpiece, it has a roughness that just feels like pure self-expression to me. Although some people don't really like it.

        3 votes
  3. [3]
    kfwyre
    (edited )
    Link
    Hi everybody! I’m kfwyre, but feel free to call me K! I’m a Tildes old-timer and, by LGBT standards, an IRL old-timer (which just means I’m above 30, lol). I’m a cis gay guy who lives a quiet...
    • Exemplary

    Hi everybody! I’m kfwyre, but feel free to call me K!

    I’m a Tildes old-timer and, by LGBT standards, an IRL old-timer (which just means I’m above 30, lol).

    I’m a cis gay guy who lives a quiet queer domestic life with my husbear of 13 years. He’s the chaotic, irreverent, fun counterpart to my more serious, stolid self. We don’t have kids and don’t plan on having them, but we do have an adorable little dog that we spoil rotten.

    Professionally, I’ve been a teacher for ~15 years. One of the things that warms my heart the most is seeing first-hand that queer youth are getting out from underneath the shame-heavy upbringing I experienced. I have students that are able to be their authentic selves and don’t have to bear the weight and horrors of the closet like I had to. It doesn’t mean things are perfect, but it does mean we’ve made a lot of progress in a short amount of time.

    Despite being a consummate introvert myself, Pride has always been for me about the joy in connecting with others and seeing ourselves as one big rainbow community — a beautiful collection of vibrant colors that shine bright on their own but look best together. No matter which identity labels you have, what letters of our alphabet you apply to yourself, or how uncertain you might still be about who — precisely — you are, Pride is a place for you to be free from judgment and feel a part of something bigger.

    My husband and I don’t really go out to Pride events anymore. We don’t have that youthful energy we once used to! But living in the house that we share together, in a marriage that we share together, is our own little everyday celebration. You’ve heard of “quiet quitting?” We practice “quiet queering” which is a way finding simple gay joy in day-to-day life.

    For example, we went and donated blood this morning. Together. As a gay couple! That has only recently become possible in the US, and I don’t imagine most people treat giving blood as a sort of date with their partner, but it means a lot to us to be able to do it. We even got very colorful free shirts that I thought were going to be Pride themed but it turns out they were just for Tetris instead, lol.

    I’m excited to hear from others here on the site, and no, your intros do NOT have to be as long as this one! Anyone who’s been around here a while knows that I am super wordy. 😂

    For the playlist, here are some of the queer bops I’ve been jamming to recently:

    22 votes
    1. [2]
      arqalite
      Link Parent
      I'd unironically wear the shit out of that Tetris T-shirt, and pretend it's gay anyway.

      I'd unironically wear the shit out of that Tetris T-shirt, and pretend it's gay anyway.

      4 votes
      1. kfwyre
        Link Parent
        After we got them my husband asked “Is it just me, or are these kind of Pride-coded?” So we’re on the exact same page as you! The intersection of gayness and gaming is very much our lane. 😁

        After we got them my husband asked “Is it just me, or are these kind of Pride-coded?” So we’re on the exact same page as you!

        The intersection of gayness and gaming is very much our lane. 😁

        6 votes
  4. [3]
    Oslypsis
    Link
    Lovely idea :) I'm Oslypsis (ahz-LIP-sis), AKA just Os. I'm asexual and aromantic, and I've never really celebrated pride before. Maybe because of my asexuality. Being ace/aro is almost easy, at...

    Lovely idea :)

    I'm Oslypsis (ahz-LIP-sis), AKA just Os. I'm asexual and aromantic, and I've never really celebrated pride before. Maybe because of my asexuality. Being ace/aro is almost easy, at least in my own experience, since it's easy to hide and not talk about.

    Idk if the song that popped into my head counts as a queer song, but for an ace woman like me, "No" by Megan Trainor fits perfectly (aside from the first part, which I find a bit condescending to say "I think it's so cute you let your friends encourage you to try and talk to me." I'm trying to grow into a more empathetic person when it comes to mens' struggles in the patriarchy, and I imagine having to make the first move with a total stranger is one of them).
    But I think the song's meaning can really apply to anyone, of course, when someone assumes you'd be attracted to them and won't let up when you say no. Although the lyrics are speaking about women wanting the men to leave them alone.

    Potential triggers: acephobia, homophobia, & brief mention of SA (don't worry, I'm fine)

    It also reminds me of when lesbians have to try to avoid someone who thinks they can be changed "with the right man." Same can happen with ace/aro people too. My mom, who is usually very understanding actually said "I want you to try a sexual relationship before you identify as asexual" as if I can't just know I don't want a sex life without trying it first (in my mind that would be like me r-wording myself). Frustrating stuff.

    But thank you for starting this topic. These kinds of introverted, shyer ways of interacting with the GSM community are really all I've ever felt comfortable with doing, thanks to extraneous personal issues. Going to a parade or march is too stimulating for me.

    13 votes
    1. [2]
      arqalite
      Link Parent
      I resonate with the "why don't you just try it once?" part. While I'm not aro/ace (I'm a gay man), my parents have repeatedly asked me to have sexual relations with women, just to make sure I'm...

      I resonate with the "why don't you just try it once?" part. While I'm not aro/ace (I'm a gay man), my parents have repeatedly asked me to have sexual relations with women, just to make sure I'm really gay. My dad even offered to pay a sex worker for me, which I found deeply insulting.

      There's this mentality of "you gotta make sure" before you do anything outside the norm that I hate. Nowadays I just retaliate with "why don't you spend the night with a man, Greg, just to make sure?" which shuts them up, but it's still annoying. Maybe we should let people live their lives the way they choose, without invalidating their decisions because they "haven't tried every option". Maybe some of us don't want to try every option, Greg.

      Also I find surprising that it's easy to hide your aro/ace identity. Here in Eastern Europe, everyone and their mother is eager to ask you when you'll find a partner, or worse, when you plan to find a partner so you can have kids. It's frustrating because I have to keep deflecting and change the subject with "I'm focusing on my career right now. This month I did <insert project here> and I'm very proud of it and <ramble for 5 minutes so they forget they asked about kids and marriage>".

      But I'm happy you don't encounter these situations as often as me. :)

      I'm also not fully comfortable with attending IRL Pride events, and mostly live it vicariously through online content and discussions, so I'm grateful kfwyre started this thread.

      9 votes
      1. Oslypsis
        Link Parent
        Ah yeah, if I were you I'd say "you have to lead by example if you want to even have a chance of me doing as you say", but we both (all) know they wont. Like, "your uneasiness about me having an...

        Ah yeah, if I were you I'd say "you have to lead by example if you want to even have a chance of me doing as you say", but we both (all) know they wont. Like, "your uneasiness about me having an uncommon trait is not my problem to solve... especially when it comes to something as personal as sex and relationships."

        I find it easy to hide my asexuality because I've basically kept to myself for so long now, that it kind of blends into the background that I "have nothing going on" in my life. At least nothing worth sharing. Everyone who knows me knows I'm not very emotional or active, so I guess that might be a reason. Maybe I'm surrounded by more understanding people. After all, that comment my mom made was the worst she's said about it, and it was only once. She's even reiterated her understanding when she told me that due to the housing market, my disability, and my aceness, I can just stay with her until she and my dad pass. I agreed and felt that was the best plan for me. I'll slowly take over the house, kitten business, and watch over them like a hawk when their health starts to decline.

        6 votes
  5. [11]
    CeeBeeEh
    Link
    I loved reading everything here and really took a while debating if I should join in. Two reasons: (1) I want to add to the voices here to cheer everyone on. A search on Tildes revealed very very...

    I loved reading everything here and really took a while debating if I should join in. Two reasons: (1) I want to add to the voices here to cheer everyone on. A search on Tildes revealed very very few posts on asexuality...... And then (2) selfishly, I dont know any queer people to talk to in real life*, so I wanted to started with the Tildes crowd and hang with the cool kids this month :/ I do realize y'all not my therapist so I'll try to keep things light.

    (This is an alt. My regular use name is searchable back to the days of ICQ and I don't want things to be complicated. My apologies. * : I know of friends of friends or family of friends who are queer but not in my direct tiny circle of people I am on private life -talking basis with.....)

    I am a cis woman who recently figured out I am asexual, but not aromantic. Grew up in conservative minority circles in Canada, and assumed everyone was just cis het and obviously so am I and my partner.

    I'm really new at this and I'm not excited about anything over from my side, just excited for you fine people having a celebration month.

    To be honest I don't even know if I belong here: cis woman married and having a sex life is as normal as they come. But if anyone else wants to talk about the (mild) complexities / highs and lows of a relationship with a very high libido partner while being asexual, I wanted to leave this note here for you to hit me up. :)

    I also don't have queer music to recommend, sorry. >..< I can't say I have ever paid attention to the orientation or identities of musicians and celebrities....... I still struggle to imagine why gender and sexuality are so central to nearly every organism on the planet and I "forget" nearly 100% of the time that most people are very interested and very motivated by sex.

    10 votes
    1. [2]
      em-dash
      Link Parent
      That's mostly because it's one of the easiest queer-spectrum things to be quiet about. The others are all different sorts of "I do this thing differently than the cultural average", but asexuality...

      A search on Tildes revealed very very few posts on asexuality

      That's mostly because it's one of the easiest queer-spectrum things to be quiet about. The others are all different sorts of "I do this thing differently than the cultural average", but asexuality is just "I don't really actively desire to do this thing that's almost always done in private anyway". I'm something asexual-adjacent that I haven't bothered to find a label for, but I don't talk about it much because there isn't really anything to talk about for me. (I had a libido pre-transition, but mentally felt asexual, and constantly felt like I was having to fight my body. I was glad when HRT made it mostly go away.)

      To be honest I don't even know if I belong here: cis woman married and having a sex life is as normal as they come.

      Gatekeeping queerness is dumb and people should stop doing it. If you want to belong, you belong, as far as I'm concerned.

      8 votes
      1. CeeBeeEh
        Link Parent
        Thank you, em-dash :) Someone said that averages are dumb because then the average person on the planet would have one testicle and one ovary. We're all different and the sooner we stop thinking...

        Thank you, em-dash :)

        Someone said that averages are dumb because then the average person on the planet would have one testicle and one ovary. We're all different and the sooner we stop thinking 'oh well this person is defined as X, hence they must have these qualities or enjoy these things or be terrible at certain tasks', the better off we're all going to be.

        And people like yourselves, who have had a wider range of experiences can better empathize with a wider range of people, I think :) like this, sending me, a stranger, encouragement and making me feel less alone and excluded <3

        4 votes
    2. [2]
      kfwyre
      Link Parent
      I’m glad you joined in, and just so you (and anyone else who needs to hear this) know unequivocally: yes, you are absolutely welcome here! This is as much your space to be yourself as it is anyone...

      I’m glad you joined in, and just so you (and anyone else who needs to hear this) know unequivocally: yes, you are absolutely welcome here!

      This is as much your space to be yourself as it is anyone else’s.

      5 votes
      1. CeeBeeEh
        Link Parent
        Thank you, kfwyre~! I appreciate the bold lettering and the unequivocal welcome into your space :D and thank you for making this happen and spearheading this community event. Greatly looking...

        Thank you, kfwyre~! I appreciate the bold lettering and the unequivocal welcome into your space :D and thank you for making this happen and spearheading this community event. Greatly looking forward to what we're doing together next~~

        3 votes
    3. [3]
      DefinitelyNotAFae
      Link Parent
      Ace-inclusive here. The A-spec is valid. 💜

      Ace-inclusive here. The A-spec is valid. 💜

      4 votes
      1. [2]
        CeeBeeEh
        Link Parent
        Thank you DefinitelyNotAFae :) it's folks like you that encourage me to be braver a little bit and share, in hopes that others can also feel a bit braver.

        Thank you DefinitelyNotAFae :) it's folks like you that encourage me to be braver a little bit and share, in hopes that others can also feel a bit braver.

        4 votes
        1. DefinitelyNotAFae
          Link Parent
          I live life wearing rainbows and saying my pronouns so that my students can be heard and validated. I'm glad it works here too 🏳️🌈

          I live life wearing rainbows and saying my pronouns so that my students can be heard and validated. I'm glad it works here too 🏳️‍🌈

          4 votes
    4. [2]
      arqalite
      Link Parent
      Well I'm actually kinda curious, let me know if this isn't the right place to ask: how does your partner manage his sex drive considering your asexuality? What compromises did each of you make,...

      Well I'm actually kinda curious, let me know if this isn't the right place to ask: how does your partner manage his sex drive considering your asexuality? What compromises did each of you make, while ensuring both of you feel happy and respected?

      Asking as a very high libido guy who wouldn't know how to navigate such a relationship. :)

      4 votes
      1. sparksbet
        Link Parent
        Not OP but also ace and married -- in our case, my wife takes care of it the way she did before we were together. We had sex earlier on in our relationship but haven't since my already-low libido...

        Not OP but also ace and married -- in our case, my wife takes care of it the way she did before we were together. We had sex earlier on in our relationship but haven't since my already-low libido got nuked from orbit by Lexapro. When we got together we knew our libidos were at wildly different levels and expected to have to accommodate that, so neither of us was blindsided, if that helps. We still show affection in all the other ways you'd expect.

        I don't think it's the kind of relationship that would work for everyone -- for some people it would not be fulfilling enough and everyone deserves to have their needs met -- but for us and our needs it works.

        5 votes
    5. Gaywallet
      Link Parent
      Aro, but not ace dropping by to say hi! Navigating allistics as aro or ace (or both!) can be real rough. I hope you're doing well 💜

      asexual, but not aromantic

      Aro, but not ace dropping by to say hi! Navigating allistics as aro or ace (or both!) can be real rough. I hope you're doing well 💜

      3 votes
  6. [10]
    GenuinelyCrooked
    Link
    Hello everyone! I'm GenuinelyCrooked, you can call me Crook if you like. I'm a bisexual cis woman from the US, living in Sweden with my husband and three cats. (Being married to a man does not...

    Hello everyone!

    I'm GenuinelyCrooked, you can call me Crook if you like. I'm a bisexual cis woman from the US, living in Sweden with my husband and three cats. (Being married to a man does not make me any less bisexual. My attraction to women & enbys hasn't gone anywhere!)

    My husband is having surgery this month, so whether or not we do anything for Pride is going to depend on how quickly he gets back on his feet, but Stockholm and Goteborg both have pretty beautiful festivals that we'd like to show up for if possible.

    For the playlist I'd like to contribute
    Nights with You - MØ
    and
    The Sound - The Crazy 88. I heard this version before the version by the 1975 is it feels extremely sapphic to me.

    9 votes
    1. [9]
      arqalite
      Link Parent
      Absolutely, I find it disappointing to see people say things like "see, you weren't gay!" when a bi person gets into a heterosexual relationship. It invalidates their feelings and identity and it...

      Being married to a man does not make me any less bisexual. My attraction to women & enbys hasn't gone anywhere!

      Absolutely, I find it disappointing to see people say things like "see, you weren't gay!" when a bi person gets into a heterosexual relationship. It invalidates their feelings and identity and it also feels like these people are trying to find a "gotcha" and make themselves feel right at our expense.

      The relationships you're in don't define your sexuality, and people should learn that.

      (People should also learn it's okay for their partner to find other people besides them attractive. Being attracted to someone doesn't mean they will cheat on you. But that's a whole other discussion.)

      10 votes
      1. [8]
        cfabbro
        (edited )
        Link Parent
        Yeah, it really sucks that bi erasure is still a thing, even in the LGBT+ community. And sadly, IME, it's actually more prominent in the LGBT+ community (especially the gay community) than it is...

        Yeah, it really sucks that bi erasure is still a thing, even in the LGBT+ community. And sadly, IME, it's actually more prominent in the LGBT+ community (especially the gay community) than it is with straight people. I usually just say I'm bi to straight people who ask, because it's quicker and doesn't usually require further explanation to them. And unless the person is homophobic, I don't usually get much pushback either. But I generally avoid telling other queer people I meet IRL that I'm bi, and say I'm pansexual instead, because I have gotten way too many annoying remarks about bisexuality from other queer people. Sure, most of the time they're said in a joking sort of way, but it still kinda gets under my skin and I'd rather not deal with that.

        p.s. Pansexual is actually a more accurate description in my case anyways, but even still, it sucks that I have to worry about how I label myself to other queer people. :(

        8 votes
        1. [7]
          DefinitelyNotAFae
          Link Parent
          The worst part is there is a mutual pan/biphobic thing that seems to happen every year during pride. Where bi folks are called transphobic and pan folks are called biphobic. And people pretend...

          The worst part is there is a mutual pan/biphobic thing that seems to happen every year during pride. Where bi folks are called transphobic and pan folks are called biphobic. And people pretend that just because you call yourself pan you can't also be transphobic. And we all pretend that everyone uses the labels identically and judge each other for it. Externally I see a lot of gay men and straight women invalidating bi men, and lesbians (of the gold star variety) and straight men invalidating bi women. And enbys/gnc folks just stare.

          Happy Pride, right? 乁⁠(⁠ ⁠•⁠_⁠•⁠ ⁠)⁠ㄏ

          I comfortably use both labels because bi is as accurate as pan for me. Queer is easier, and adds the political aspect I like. But I've spent pride being shamed for that too before.

          So anyway, let all your pride flags fly 💜💜🏳️‍🌈🏳️‍🌈💜💜

          6 votes
          1. [6]
            cfabbro
            (edited )
            Link Parent
            For some, maybe, but I used to genuinely despise the term "queer" even as a self-label. I understand the "taking it back" and political statement aspect of it, but growing up I was frequently on...

            Queer is easier

            For some, maybe, but I used to genuinely despise the term "queer" even as a self-label. I understand the "taking it back" and political statement aspect of it, but growing up I was frequently on the receiving end of people using queer (and faggot) as hateful insults, so even when I hear other LGBT+ people use it to describe themselves it still raises my hackles a bit. Over the last few years I have gotten slightly more comfortable with it, and have even started using it to describe myself sometimes too (mostly in an effort to force myself to get used to it)... but it's still hard, since hearing it still brings up a lot of extremely unpleasant memories, many of which involved bullying and physical violence. :(

            p.s. Just to be clear, I would never try to shame someone for calling themselves queer though. Being uncomfortable with the term as a self-label is entirely a me problem, and I recognize that.

            10 votes
            1. DefinitelyNotAFae
              Link Parent
              Oh I definitely mean for me personally. I don't have the personal experience of the slurs landing but there's also no word for us not used as a slur in some way or another. (Unless its perhaps...

              For some, maybe, but I used to genuinely despise the term "queer" even as a self-label. I understand the "taking it back" and political statement aspect of it, but growing up I was frequently on the receiving end of people using queer (and faggot) as insults, so even when I hear other LGBT+ people use it to describe themselves it still raises my hackles a bit. Over the last few years I have gotten slightly more comfortable with it, and have even started using it to describe myself sometimes too (mostly in an effort to force myself to get used to it)... but it's still hard, since hearing it brings up a lot of extremely unpleasant memories, many of which involved physical violence. :(

              Oh I definitely mean for me personally.

              I don't have the personal experience of the slurs landing but there's also no word for us not used as a slur in some way or another. (Unless its perhaps very new or very niche. ) But your pain is valid and while I'll talk about the queer community as a whole, mostly to avoid the constant morphing of letters, I don't apply that label to anyone who doesn't want it. Same with any label really.

              Edit to your edit: no worries I didn't think you were policing others.

              5 votes
            2. [2]
              kfwyre
              Link Parent
              Sorry cfabbro. :( A heads up: I'm going to be using that word a good amount in the Pride series of posts I'm making this month. I'm not trying to change your mind or anything (your feelings are...

              Sorry cfabbro. :(

              A heads up: I'm going to be using that word a good amount in the Pride series of posts I'm making this month.

              I'm not trying to change your mind or anything (your feelings are completely valid, and I absolutely get where they're coming from -- I have similar stories of my own, unfortunately), but if it helps you at all, I want you to know that when I use that word, I intend for it to feel like a warm hug, or a jacket that fits just right, or that feeling you get when you see a beautiful piece of artwork for the first time.

              Please know that I'm not intending any harm with it. Quite the opposite, really. When I use it now, to talk about our community and bring us together in moments like these, it helps to heal some of that damage that young me suffered in its name.

              3 votes
              1. cfabbro
                (edited )
                Link Parent
                Absolutely no need to apologize. As I said, it's definitely a me problem, and I know that. And no worries about using it a lot in these topics, I'm trying to force myself to get more used to it...

                Absolutely no need to apologize. As I said, it's definitely a me problem, and I know that. And no worries about using it a lot in these topics, I'm trying to force myself to get more used to it anyways.

                4 votes
            3. [2]
              sparksbet
              Link Parent
              It's interesting because when I hear someone who's Gen X or older say they're uncomfortable with "queer", it's almost always for the reason you give -- unpleasant memories of personal experience...

              It's interesting because when I hear someone who's Gen X or older say they're uncomfortable with "queer", it's almost always for the reason you give -- unpleasant memories of personal experience with it being used as a slur. But using it as a slur definitely wasn't as common when I was young (people usually went straight from "gay" to "fag" or "dyke") so when someone my age is weird about the word "queer", it's a huge red flag that they're hanging out with exclusionists (typically "drop the T" folks and/or radfems). It's kinda crazy how much things have changed in such a relatively short span of time.

              2 votes
              1. cfabbro
                (edited )
                Link Parent
                I'm at the tail end of Gen X, so that makes sense. Although I imagine it's pretty regional too. And for whatever reason "queer" seemed to be the go to insult where/when I grew up in Canada....

                I'm at the tail end of Gen X, so that makes sense. Although I imagine it's pretty regional too. And for whatever reason "queer" seemed to be the go to insult where/when I grew up in Canada. Although "faggot" was a close second, for sure. :(

                p.s. When I lived in the UK I got used to hearing "fag" though, since everyone there used it in reference to cigarettes. "Going out for a fag?" "Join me for a fag?" "Can I bum (have) a fag?" etc. :P

                5 votes
  7. sparksbet
    Link
    Hi everybody! I'm Sparky. I've really enjoyed reading other people's stories here. I don't have any good music recs, but I'll take a stab at introducing myself. I'm in my late-20s. Born and raised...

    Hi everybody! I'm Sparky. I've really enjoyed reading other people's stories here. I don't have any good music recs, but I'll take a stab at introducing myself.

    I'm in my late-20s. Born and raised in Ohio, but currently living in Germany, Berlin specifically, with my Norwegian wife. My gender identity is something that I haven't exactly pinned down yet -- maybe I never will -- but I'm definitely trans, nonbinary, and genderqueer. Currently I'm experimenting with identifying as multigender, and my tumblr profile says "trans butch".

    I only actually realized I was trans relatively recently, in 2021 or so. My wife had been out for a little while and we were living together, and I think that gave me the freedom to think more about gender and my experience of it than I had before. I realized that I really did dislike my breasts and would probably like to get them reduced (which later escalated to a desire for full top surgery lol). And I started exploring the idea of presenting myself in differently gendered ways. I cut my hair properly short for the first time and loved it. I didn't force myself into an identity super quickly, but it became clear I wasn't cis. And because it's required for trans medical care here, I'm not officially diagnosed with Transgender by a lovely trans therapist.

    For me, I figure pinning down the exact borders of my identity is less important than figuring out what I want for myself and my life. My goals for my presentation are to be the sort of person where people on the street aren't sure whether I'm a gay guy or a butch lesbian. Which, I guess both would be correct, since I consider myself gay "in both directions" (that is, I'm bi but I feel like both my attraction to women and attraction to men is queer in nature). I'm also on the ace spectrum (and on Lexapro, which does a good job of killing whatever libido I had to begin with).

    I got top surgery two months ago, which I'm super happy about! I was nervous about the whole process but it really ended up being super easy. I didn't need anything stronger than ibuprofin after the first day, and after two weeks there wasn't even any soreness. The hardest part by far was sleeping on my back for several weeks and the itchiness from where I got lipo under my armpits, which lasted way longer than the pain. But now all of that is past and I'm basically totally recovered -- I can pick things up off high shelves and everything! I'm super happy with the results, but there are a couple touch-ups that I'll discuss with my surgeon at my two-month follow up.

    My family back in the States is all fundamentalist evangelicals, so I was raised in a pretty homophobic environment (trans people weren't the issue du jour yet when I was young). But in large part due to contact with my friends, who were openly gay and trans before I was, they've softened up a lot over time. I don't think most of my family will ever be "good allies" in the conventional sense, but I don't expect them to be. I just want to be able to visit home with my wife and do stupid family things and love each other. And luckily that much has stuck around even as I gradually become more obviously queer. I came out as nonbinary to them when I got my top surgery, which got some raised eyebrows but I think otherwise they don't care much about. I'm not planning on changing my name or pronouns in a way that effects them, so it's more or less all the same to them. My wife is trans fem, and she wasn't very far in her transition last time we visited so we dodged even the potential for homophobia... now she's been on HRT for longer and we're not gonna even try to avoid she pronouns, but so far my family hasn't commented on it during our video chats. We'll see how things turn out on that front, but my mom has talked about how she hopes my openly gay friends from high school still have good relationships with their parents, so I'm optimistic that nothing will practically change.

    As for celebrating Pride Month, not really sure what we'll do. Most of the actual Pride month stuff here in Germany (or at least in Berlin) is in July, so we've got some time beforehand. Last year there were several pride parades and my wife went to one, but I didn't because of my health issues. I'm doing better on that front lately, but we'll see if I'm up to marching in July.

    8 votes
  8. [4]
    Arthur
    Link
    Hi everyone, I'm Arthur! Happy pride month! I'm a bisexual non-binary man (???, I know -I'm still figuring that one out) I've been on Tildes for a long time now (almost 6 years now?!?), but you...

    Hi everyone, I'm Arthur! Happy pride month! I'm a bisexual non-binary man (???, I know -I'm still figuring that one out)

    I've been on Tildes for a long time now (almost 6 years now?!?), but you might not recognise me because I've spent most of that time lurking. If you have seen me, I've probably been discussing LGBT issues (especially trans rights), British politics, or the often unfortunate intersection of the two. I used far too many brackets (because why not), which I'm sure upsets some people, but hey, it works for me.

    I was enjoying reading the replies to this post and wasn't going to write anything, but decided to in the end because I was raised by queer spaces on the internet and didn't (and still don't) get the support I needed from my family. Queer spaces online genuinely saved my life so I know how important they are.

    My contribution to the gaylist includes:

    This Hell - Rina Sawayama
    Lunch - Billie Eilish
    Rush -Troye Sivan
    Red Wine Supernova - Chapel Roan

    And then semi-nonironically if that's allowed:

    Karma - Jojo Siwa

    Like, I know it's not a good song but there's something so campy about the whole thing I can't help but love it just a tiny bit. I never claimed to have good taste in music, but I do know my way around mainstream gay pop.

    8 votes
    1. [2]
      arqalite
      Link Parent
      Unpopular opinion (I wanted to write about it but people started to stop caring about it, so I'm using this opportunity): Karma is a banger and JoJo didn't deserve all the hate. Some of it sure,...

      Unpopular opinion (I wanted to write about it but people started to stop caring about it, so I'm using this opportunity):

      Karma is a banger and JoJo didn't deserve all the hate. Some of it sure, but I feel like the internet tried to find every single reason to bash JoJo and she didn't deserve that.

      The Brit Smith thing was overblown, songs are sold and change artists so often, it's such a common practice that I was shocked that people found it outrageous. Some argued that JoJo was a hypocrite for saying she worked hard on this song despite the lyrics being almost identical to Brit's version. Yeah, but the instrumental is different, she could have provided feedback on that, there was a music video (more on that later) and marketing and so much more that goes into making and releasing a modern song.

      Also Brit releasing her own version shortly after JoJo felt like her attempting to capitalize off the hate wave. I don't mind that, a girl's gotta eat, but it felt weird to release it so soon.

      The music video - generic, sure, I watched it once and I'm fine not watching it again, but I've seen so much worse. The dance didn't deserve the hate either, it's not good, but again so much worse was put online before her, and if the hate train didn't exist, people would just go "this sucks" and move on.

      "Queer pop" was a total blunder and she does deserve the backlash for that. I don't think she realized she was erasing decades of music with that statement, and probably she still doesn't.

      The thing that unsettled me most was people criticizing the "I was a bad girl" line because of her children's entertainment work. Yes, she did look like an angel on TV, that does not make her an angel in real life. She very much could have actually cheated on her ex while doing kids' shows, so the line isn't out of place.

      I guess a part of the hate was the sudden transition from rainbows and bubblegum to emo black and adult(ish) lyrics. Like she can't or shouldn't make anything that isn't perfectly sterile and kids-friendly because of her existing career. She is entitled to taking her career in any direction she wants, and hating her new work because it's different from her past work is not productive.

      Also, she's 21 and very much still acting like a teenager. People I guess expected this new era to have her act with the maturity of a 30-year-old? That wasn't going to happen.

      This whole rebrand, to me, is just JoJo acting out her teen fantasies, which yeah, is bound to be cringe as fuck, and she's going to say tone deaf things because she probably still doesn't know any better. And being a celebrity with money and a hundred dozen people behind her doesn't help her know nuance that well. I guess that's something to hate her for, but again, it's not like she was the first.

      Quite literally, JoJo did nothing new, nothing revolutionary, and at best it should have received some criticism and be forgotten in a week or so (but the song still bangs, it deserves to be popular). But because she was perceived as a perfect person because of her previous on-camera persona, and now she showed like a dozen flaws, the internet decided to pour hate on her.

      3 votes
      1. Arthur
        Link Parent
        This statement almost perfectly encapsulates my feelings on the matter. Technically, I don't think Karma is an excellent song. The other artists I listed have amazing, thought provoking albums...

        Quite literally, JoJo did nothing new, nothing revolutionary, and at best it should have received some criticism and be forgotten in a week or so (but the song still bangs, it deserves to be popular).

        This statement almost perfectly encapsulates my feelings on the matter. Technically, I don't think Karma is an excellent song. The other artists I listed have amazing, thought provoking albums that are more than just pop. They sing songs that make me feel things. They have produced some of the (imo) best music videos of the decade. Billie Eilish is famous for her music videos, Chapel Roan's music videos are excellently produced (Red Wine Supernova, Casual, and My Kink is Karma). One of Your Girls by Troye Sivan is both an unhinged amount of sexy, but also something that shocked me in a 'gooped and gagged' kind of way.

        Karma is none of that. Lyrically, it is lacking. To me, the highlight is claiming that you're a bad girl and that you've done bad things, but then wishing you'd never "f'd" around. The music video is uninteresting.

        I agree with your assessment of the controversy surrounding the song, I feel a lot of the hate is just people hating because they can.

        All that's being said though, I still find myself singing it, and enjoy listening to it. It's a catchy pop song, and not every single one has to be deep. On the other hand though, I actually think the drama surrounding it is part of why I like it in the first place. I probably wouldn't have listened to the song twice had it been released with no fanfare/controversy. The fact that JoJo overhyped a song, released it to a mountain of hate, and claimed it was revolutionary queer pop is so fascinating to me, and so I do get an additional sense of joy and amusement when I listen to it now.

        3 votes
    2. DefinitelyNotAFae
      Link Parent
      Someone posted on Tiktok that we all hate JoJo Siwa for what she's doing and not her queerness and well that's progress. I'm so glad she's here to invent queer pop though lol

      Someone posted on Tiktok that we all hate JoJo Siwa for what she's doing and not her queerness and well that's progress.

      I'm so glad she's here to invent queer pop though lol

      1 vote
  9. [2]
    Felicity
    (edited )
    Link
    Was very unsure if to participate considering my god awful mental state, but I figured it would only really do me good to put some information out there and try to be more vulnerable. I'm Felicity...

    Was very unsure if to participate considering my god awful mental state, but I figured it would only really do me good to put some information out there and try to be more vulnerable.

    I'm Felicity (or Feli), which isn't the name I go by in my day to day life but one that I picked out when I reset my online presence after realizing that I was in the wrong place and knew the wrong people. I use it both because I find it very cute, and because it reminds me to try and be happy whenever I open my phone.

    I am a trans girl in my early twenties living in Israel, one and a half-ish years into my transition. Growing up I had always struggled with gender identity and would tell myself that I should battle these thoughts and reject them, because that was the "moral" thing to do. I had only realized that transitioning was not only an option, but the obvious one, when I was near the end of my teens.

    Growing up I had a lot of unhealthy views about trans people, some that are still internalized today but that I at least know to actively fight. Coming to terms with the fact that my base self is not a very good person has led me to isolate from the bad influences that got me here and start again, this time trying to be aware of the weight and power my words can have.

    Mental health stuff, tw suicidal ideation, depression

    I suffer greatly from trust and abandonment issues, to the point where making new connections is an actively terrifying process. Throughout my life people and friends would often up and leave without much warning, oftentimes without me realizing what I ever did wrong and lacking the ability to ask. Either because of this or in addition to this, I get hurt very easily and when I do it lasts for a very long time. My depression has dramatically lessened since transitioning - as have my suicidal thoughts - but I regularly mentally self harm and am generally extremely unkind to myself. Inside my head it is not just a thought, but a fact of life that everyone vividly dislikes me no matter what they say, which makes forming relationships that much harder (it takes me an actual year of validation to be convinced that people don't hate me).

    I have recently begun to interface with local trans people, but things aren't going as smoothly as they were just a week ago. I remain hopeful it can change but my irrationalities make me want to just isolate and forget about everyone. Experiencing these emotions to this degree while on HRT is not something I've gone through before and it is very, very intense.

    I'm generally very quiet and introverted, with heaps and heaps of social anxiety, something that has led me to step away from my local trans centers and the like. I hope to one day be a lot more involved in the community but fear that it is an unrealistic expectation from myself.

    On a more positive note, my medical transition has begun picking up some serious steam, and confidence in my looks is steadily rising. I find myself taking way more pictures and selfies of my outfits and makeup. Having my physical body match what I think I should look like has sort of caused things to click into place and become far less distressing to look at in the mirror.

    For music, though I think I've said this here before, I really cannot get enough of Of Montreal's discography. I don't really jive with their modern style, but works leading up and including Aureate Gloom have remained in my library since I was like, twelve. They have been a constant queer influence in my life and routinely got me to think about how a "man" (which was how I viewed Kevin when I was younger) "should" act.

    ...yeah

    8 votes
    1. DefinitelyNotAFae
      Link Parent
      Glad you're here and if you need a little voice in your head saying you have value and you matter and you deserve to exist in this world as who you are, please feel free to add mine until your own...

      Glad you're here and if you need a little voice in your head saying you have value and you matter and you deserve to exist in this world as who you are, please feel free to add mine until your own gets stronger. 💜

      1 vote
  10. DefinitelyNotAFae
    Link
    Hey I'm Definitely Not A Fae, which leads to many more questions that are answered by my user name. I use she/they (but definitely not fae) pronouns and identify as queer/pan/bi as well as as a...

    Hey I'm Definitely Not A Fae, which leads to many more questions that are answered by my user name. I use she/they (but definitely not fae) pronouns and identify as queer/pan/bi as well as as a demi-gender/non-binary/genderweird woman. Yeah I'm still working that gender thing out. I'm also polyamorous which is one of those not-itself-queer but still queer adjacent things IMO.

    I live in IL, but not in Chicago and just recently moved to a small town with my partner. I'm a caregiver for him, as he's disabled. Because of his recent paraplegia, we haven't done much for pride the past few years. I post on my socials, my mom sends me a pride gift (it's cute, I think I might be her "cool liberal boomer" cachet sometimes but I'll take it). I own those rainbow glasses from Zenni, I pretty much only wear rainbow glasses and usually have a strong queer aesthetic, in part for my students, in part for me.

    I don't listen to a lot of music really, so these don't have to make it to a playlist but...podcasts! I'll come back with links to edit in.

    Queer Podcasts:

    Gender Spiral - Ally Beardsley and Babette Thomas
    A Bit Fruity with Matt Bernstein - Matt Bernstein
    The Hidden Bookcase - Planar Prod

    I also love Maintenance Phase which has two queer hosts -Michael Hobbes and Aubrey Gordon and while their basic topic area is covering diet culture and the like, they've been doing some really excellent coverage/take down of the trans health care bans and comparing those arguments to those against gay marriage. (Some of this is Patreon locked but not all)

    7 votes
  11. 0d_billie
    Link
    Hey everyone! I'm 0d_billie, which does reveal my real name (although I've been using my middle name more and more lately). I'm a 32-year-old lesbian and trans woman living in the north of...

    Hey everyone! I'm 0d_billie, which does reveal my real name (although I've been using my middle name more and more lately). I'm a 32-year-old lesbian and trans woman living in the north of England.

    By some standards, I'm still just a little queer baby, having only "finished" coming out early last year. But I've been definitively engaging with my gender since mid-2021 after many, many aborted attempts to do so over the two decades before.

    For a long time I didn't think the "I've always known" narrative applied to me, but the more I sit with my own memories, the more I realise that I have always known. I was never comfortable calling myself a man, a boy, or male, even from a young age, always preferring to use vaguer language that contained a lot of plausible deniability. I felt a strong sense of jealousy toward my younger sister from about the time we both started to enter puberty, and my friendship circle has consistently been comprised mainly of girls and queer people. I now maintain a couple of token cis-straight friendships as well, just for inclusivity purposes.

    Coming out for me was a relatively smooth affair, although it took about 18 months to get from the point of thinking "I'm trans" to telling the world about it. I came out in very small steps, and was experimenting slowly and deliberately with different things. Again, plausible deniability, and with the ability to walk back any changes that I wasn't entirely happy with. But given that my friendship circle is decidedly queer, and that my family are on the whole quite progressive, when I did eventually finish coming out to anyone, I didn't have a single bad experience to report.

    Imposter syndrome has been my constant companion throughout this journey: I'm not trans enough; I'm not gay enough; I'm not dysphoric enough; I'm not feminine enough; etc etc. I'm still working hard on getting over these feelings of inadequacy, but they do often come to a head. This last couple of weeks have been challenging, with a big spike in dysphoria coupled with a few people in my life still struggling to use the correct pronouns (she/her, for clarity).

    It's not always smooth sailing, but you know what? I haven't had a single suicidal thought in the past 3 years. I haven't needed to take time off work for depression. I haven't struggled to connect with my friends and family. I haven't had to pretend to be someone or something I'm not. I am finally, contentedly myself (asterisk: I am, like everyone, a continuing work in progress).

    I am currently very excited about my relationship. I have fallen completely, head-over-heels in love, and she feels the same way. I have never believed in "the one" or "soulmates" or anything, but damn, she really does make me want to reassess that. She makes me feel like every relationship up until this point was just me looking for her, but not quite succeeding. It's a truly wonderful feeling to be dating someone as my true self, not having, needing, or wanting to hide a single thing about myself.

    I have no specific plans for celebrating Pride Month. My city doesn't actually do a Pride celebration until July for some reason, so I'll be attending that. Mostly this month I'll be focusing on simply being visible, and not giving a shit about what the people in my small, religiously conservative corner of the world think or say. I spent almost 30 years pretending to be something I'm not, and I'm not about to let fear or judgement force me back into the closet.


    As for songs. I don't think it's queer-related at all, but I discovered it at the start of my transition and it became a bit of a personal anthem: Start Wearing Purple. For something more explicitly queer, here's Black Tie. And for another not-sure-if-it's-queer-but-it's-become-irretrievably-linked-in-my-head option, how about The Feminine Urge.

    7 votes
  12. [3]
    MechanicalMagpie
    Link
    Hey, I'm Magpie! (or Mag or M or honestly, whatever. I have so many names I'll answer to basically anything lol) When I was a kid, my parents told me they expected me to get As, so here I am,...

    Hey, I'm Magpie! (or Mag or M or honestly, whatever. I have so many names I'll answer to basically anything lol)
    When I was a kid, my parents told me they expected me to get As, so here I am, adhd, autistic, asocial, agender, asexual, and aromantic. I think I probably got the assignment wrong but ¯_ (ツ)_/¯

    I'm in my mid 30s, so I'm Tired, which means I'm probably not going to be Doing Things for pride, other than wearing an annoying amount of rainbow things and generally just existing as a queer person as irritatingly as possible when around Co-workers Who Think I Make Being Queer My Personality and who "Don't Really Care About That Stuff" (buddy pal, believe me, I can be so much worse).

    My current favorite queer songs are Miss Nectarine and Moonlight Magic both by Ashnikko.

    7 votes
    1. cfabbro
      (edited )
      Link Parent
      That's one of the most brilliant lines I've ever seen! Absolute "Bars!" as my fellow HipHopHeads would say. Well played. :P

      When I was a kid, my parents told me they expected me to get As, so here I am, adhd, autistic, asocial, agender, asexual, and aromantic.

      That's one of the most brilliant lines I've ever seen! Absolute "Bars!" as my fellow HipHopHeads would say. Well played. :P

      5 votes
    2. CeeBeeEh
      Link Parent
      I LOVE that you got (not straight) A's!! I'm stealing this as I have a few of those myself :D

      I LOVE that you got (not straight) A's!! I'm stealing this as I have a few of those myself :D

      4 votes
  13. [3]
    adorac
    Link
    Hey! I'm Adora and I'm a 21 year old bi (I think???) trans woman. I'm into computer science (very stereotypical, I know), art, and the outdoors. My identity has been a bit of a journey lol. I was...

    Hey! I'm Adora and I'm a 21 year old bi (I think???) trans woman. I'm into computer science (very stereotypical, I know), art, and the outdoors. My identity has been a bit of a journey lol. I was always into more typically masculine stuff growing up (Star Wars, space, computers, Boy Scouts, other Male Things) but I preferred the company of other girls. I was also, for whatever reason, deathly afraid of doing anything that deviated from the norm or being vulnerable with anyone despite having pretty chill parents. I think that's where most of my problems stem from, to be honest. When I started struggling to focus on homework and was trying to figure myself out, I just bottled it all up instead of talking to anyone. That led to problems with school (despite almost always getting near-perfect test scores) and having no idea what I was feeling when puberty kicked in around 12 or 13.

    At first, I thought I was just upset that my voice had dropped and I lost a lot of range and expressiveness, but I didn't really understand why I felt so icky when my parents would comment on how I was starting to fill out or how I had leg hair or how they "forced" me to have a buzzcut for a few years (they didn't really force me, I just didn't know how to articulate how I felt and figured I might as well keep the haircut I had).

    Then in 2018, when I was 15, I went to the airport on my own, and there was a guy driving a parking lot shuttle that called me ma'am (because of my longish hair at the time; he immediately corrected himself when he heard me speak). Then it all clicked. So naturally, I did the normal thing: I told my parents what happened as a funny anecdote and hinted at my feelings about it so subtly that it was impossible to tell what they were, joked to my partner at the time that I was going to suppress that for years, and then promptly ignored it forever.

    In late 2020, my then partner (same guy) told me they were nonbinary (he's since come out at he/they) and that got me thinking about gender again. It wasn't until the summer we graduated, 2021, that I actually started realizing I was... a feminine guy, obviously. I got my partner to help me put on makeup and feminine clothes on a couple of our dates. I was "still cis tho".

    When I got to college, I went on an orientation trip where we canoed for a week and made friends with an enby. After a week of chatting with them and thinking on things, I decided I was nonbinary. Then when we got back and I got to know my roommate, I found out he was trans (which was an insane coincidence). After a few more weeks of talking things out with him, orientation friend, and my partner, I came to the conclusion that no, I'm straight up she/her trans. My poor sister had to deal with a text from me saying I was nonbinary and another saying I was fully a woman spaced like two weeks apart.

    Picking a name was weird. I liked my deadname (still do), but it was a) pretty much only used for boys and b) quite literally the most popular name for boys my age (not intentionally lol; my parents just saw the name in something obscure and got unlucky when suddenly the name was in a different show and everyone went crazy over it). And I didn't really have the option of using the name I would've gotten if I were born female, because it was just the same name with a Y! So instead I stole my name from She-Ra and the Princesses of Power because I related to Adora, we look pretty similar, and Adora sounds vaguely similar to my old name. I waited until I saw my parents in person at a family wedding to come out. There was a bit of crying but they've been nothing but supportive, thank god.

    Fast forward a year and I ended up broken up with my partner and dropped out of college (because I was and still am extremely bad at managing my ADHD). I started hormones in October 2022 and worked at a local restaurant for a bit. I also finally started to really get over that stupid irrational fear of being vulnerable.

    Then in August last year I got a real full-time job! I got an apartment of my own(!!!) in February and finally moved out of my parents' house! Things were looking up! And then on Thursday the startup suddenly went under and now I'm about to be jobless, alone in my apartment, all my friends several hours away still at college. So things are suddenly spiraling very quickly right now.

    Sorry that got a bit rambly! Haven't really told that whole story before and I'm trying to avoid revising too much so I don't get too anxious about the quality of my comment, so it probably seems very stream-of-consciousness. Thanks for reading, if you made it all the way here!

    For the playlist, I'd like to contribute Frances Forever—Space Girl.

    7 votes
    1. [2]
      CeeBeeEh
      Link Parent
      I love your name and also She-Ra the Netflix tv show. The current generation of kids are much kinder to themselves and one another thanks to shows like that, I think.

      I love your name and also She-Ra the Netflix tv show. The current generation of kids are much kinder to themselves and one another thanks to shows like that, I think.

      5 votes
      1. adorac
        Link Parent
        Thanks!!!! I totally agree, shows like that (like Gravity Falls) are great for kids.

        Thanks!!!! I totally agree, shows like that (like Gravity Falls) are great for kids.

        4 votes
  14. Lapbunny
    Link
    I find coming out stories comforting, so hey, I'll chip in. I'd had some here and there things that make me wonder how far my gender questioning went, but it definitely happened back in middle...

    I find coming out stories comforting, so hey, I'll chip in.

    I'd had some here and there things that make me wonder how far my gender questioning went, but it definitely happened back in middle school when I learned that people who changed their gender and went through SRS existed in the mid-00's. My immediate reaction was wild fascination, followed by clamming up about it because I learned it required a psych eval. I figured that I would never "pass the test" for it, and filed it away in my head, not connecting two and two to realize that the interest probably meant it's relevant to me... I also looked at a decent amount of gay porn at the time and either was like. "Nahhhh I like girls so I'm totally not gay!" Or I fantasized being a girl having sex with a guy and was like. "Well THAT'S straight, so I'm obviously straight!" Meanwhile I'd sneak into my sister's closet to try on a dress, choose female characters whenever I privately could in games, and occasionally pretend I was a girl on the internet. I dunno man, defense mechanisms are stupid. My parents were also typically accepting of LGBT people externally, but then when it came to me would tell me offhand "only gay men dye their hair white" or other stuffy shit. It made me feel extremely conscious whenever any cracks in my external self came through.

    This continued through the entirety of college, and I had some online sex experiences with guys while completely ignoring that a bi label would be totally relevant - and not even an issue! - with myself. As some friends came out as trans, I thought, "wow. these people are really confident about it. I'm not! I must not be trans." I kept telling myself this over and over, and got into pretty depressive states at points about my gender, thinking "maybe in the next life" or other BS.

    Five years ago I was reading the story Bokura no Hentai, a manga about three AMAB people who dress as women for different reasons. (It's occasionally a bit spotty about trans issues, but I still altogether love it.) It culminates in this extremely duh metaphor spread of a butterfly emerging, and at 3 in the morning it slapped me in the face and made me confront myself. I asked "what the fuck am I doing?" and, really, came out to me. The next day, colors were more vibrant than I ever imagined. I told my then-girlfriend a week later - she was a bit shaken at first worrying about any change to us, but it wasn't and she's been ever loving and accepting about it. We're married now.

    I think genderfluid as a label works best; I like the flexibility. I'm perpetually curious about HRT, but I don't really feel confident about doing it because I don't know the end result and I've been so wishy-washy about things my whole life that I'm fine avoiding something more permanent. That's fine by me for right now - if anything I think the ambiguity fits me best, and it's not like I don't have moments of enjoying masculinity. Becoming a "dad" in the traditional social single-income family sense helped solidify my thoughts on it, too. For some reason I don't really identify often with male, but the dad label works in my head? Go figure.

    I'm not really "out" in the sense that I volunteer my identity to people, but if it comes up I'm open about it. I've told most friends and some family. I've also been kind of open about the fact that I find guys hot sometimes; I haven't really outright said it to anyone, but I think most people get it by how I talk about Ryan Gosling.

    I haven't told my parents yet, though. I considered doing it in a letter, but I think I want them to come to the conclusion themselves? They've been around """traditionally""" queer people in the sense they were in very gay spaces in the 70's/80's, and they're accepting of my sister being bi. But I feel like non-binary gender stuff is so out of their wheelhouse, and I still get the sense they're kinda hush-hush about queer issues. I think I just want them to take some damn initiative to confront it themselves rather than me having to drag it out... It altogether doesn't - or, shouldn't - really change what I am to them, and I tell people any/any works for pronouns because I like it, so I wouldn't want them to change how they interact with me. I dunno.

    Anyway - Nara by alt-j is probably my favorite overtly-queer song. I was obsessively listening to Time n Place by Kero Kero Bonito for months at the time when I came out to myself, so I find Swimming very linked in my head with queerness and finding oneself due to the lyrical content and mood.

    4 votes
  15. Bet
    (edited )
    Link
    A bit late to the party, but I wanted to throw a few song suggestions into the mix. A couple of these artists have already been mentioned, but not these specific songs, so: Troye Sivan - One Of...

    A bit late to the party, but I wanted to throw a few song suggestions into the mix. A couple of these artists have already been mentioned, but not these specific songs, so:

    Troye Sivan - One Of Your Girls
    Dorian Electra - Flamboyant / Idolize / Symphony
    Chappell Roan - Naked in Manhattan / Pink Pony Club
    FLETCHER - girls girls girls
    Sufjan Stevens - Will Anybody Ever Love Me? / Goodbye Evergreen

    Very much looking forward to seeing the rest of the scheduled Pride posts, kfwyre! These are such a good idea. :)

    Edit: Misspelling corrected. Also, can’t resist adding just one more artist -

    Rina Sawayama - This Hell / Holy (Til You Let Me Go)

    4 votes