So my birthday is coming up on July 8th. My birthday wish this year is that everyone donates money or time to their local LGBTQP...
I’m transgender. My girlfriend has supported me from the time we got together, celebrating my “transliness”, even finding tips to help me transition easier. When I got my packer, she laughed at it and asked me to take it off. I felt humiliated, but did so. Ever since then, she begs me to take it off if we start to become intimate. (The term there is “if”; our intimacy has been on a steady decline ever since then.) Now that I’m on testosterone, she’s shying away even more. It seems that being able to afford a decent quality binder has really halted anything. She’s even refusing to kiss me more than once or lay against me. A few nights ago she said that something was bothering her and to not get offended. She admitted that she is a lesbian, and only got with me originally because I was female bodied. She says that she’s fallen completely in love with me, but is no longer sexually attracted to me unless I take my packer and/or binder off. She coaxes the binder off by offering a back massage. (Seeing as I have pulled every muscle in my back and slipped 2 discs, I can’t refuse.) I have absolutely no idea what to do. I’m humiliated. She says that she will always love me, but is sexually frustrated. She doesn’t want to leave me because she loves me, but would rather have sex with a girl. Any advice or..?Molias replies:
I’m sorry to hear that things have been so strained between you and your girlfriend when it comes to your transition. Gender transition is a pretty intense experience; a good thing for you, to be sure, but it’s still full of a lot of changes in a relatively short period of time. And it can be tough, even for folks who want to be supportive and are happy for you, to adjust to those changes as quickly as they’re coming.
For some people, too, it’s a very different thing to be supportive of the idea of trans people, or of trans acquaintances and friends, and to see a loved one go through that process. You’ve probably had a good while to sit with your thoughts about your own identity, get excited about the physical changes that testosterone will bring, and try out changes to your gender presentation. But even if your girlfriend’s known that you were trans for a while, she still hasn’t known as long as you have, and the reality of it may be startling or jarring to her as changes become more apparent.
There’s a process some cisgender folks go through, consciously or not, of “mourning” their “lost” sister, son, girlfriend, father, etc. when a loved one transitions. To be honest, I personally roll my eyes at this a bit because I didn’t die or vanish when I transitioned, and didn’t feel like I was mourning anything at all - I was celebrating! Even so, I don’t have to like or agree with it to understand that it happens.
Your girlfriend may just be taking a while to really understand and process the changes you’re going through. It also sounds like she’s been thinking a lot about her sexual orientation and what it means for her identity if she’s in a relationship with someone who is not a woman.
Your girlfriend is entitled to whatever feelings come up for her right now, around you, your transition, and her own identity - there’s no way any of us can control our feelings and emotional responses to things that happen in our lives. However, while your girlfriend has the right to her feelings, no matter what they are, it’s also her job to manage them in a way that is not excessively hurtful to you.
She doesn’t have the right to be disrespectful by laughing at your packer or anything else you wear that makes you feel happier and more comfortable. That’s really not okay.
Read the rest from Molias at Scarleteen here.
I identify as a Black, queer woman. My Blackness makes my story all the more problematic for some people. The assumptions that are made about Black women’s reproductive decisions mean that I will receive less compassion and acceptance than my white counterparts for having had an abortion—especially because I’m not repentant about it. As organizers we are not always aware of our implicit biases but there are plenty of white people who in an effort to make abortion safe and accessible are reaffirming negative stereotypes about women of color. This happens through negligent storytelling that says there is a right and wrong way to have the need to access an abortion.
The narrative that abortion gives women and transpeople an opportunity to live the rest of our lives, to become a doctor or a lawyer or whatever isn’t true for everyone. For some of us, abortion just provides one more day. One more day to live our lives exactly the way we want to. For some of us the decision isn’t political, it’s essential. It is essential to taking care of the children we already have, to circumventing difficult medical experiences or to just not be pregnant. There is nothing heroic about having an abortion. It is an essential part of reproductive health care.
Every year on the anniversary of my abortion I take off of work. Not to grieve but to celebrate: because of my right to choose, I am living my best life. Making the decision to have an abortion didn’t mean I had the rest of my life, it just meant that I had one more day to live exactly the way I wanted and for that I’m grateful.
My best friend gave me a blowjob and I don’t know what to do about it. It started off at some college party a few months ago. We got drunk and had to get a ride to my place. He stays far away in the boondocks and the designated driver didn’t want to drive that far so I told my best friend he can sleep by my house. While we were laying down and watching TV I told him about how my girlfriend gave me head for the first time last night. Next thing I know, he’s giving me an example of when his ex-girlfriend sucked him off and he starts nuzzling his nose in my pelvis area. One harmless example lead to another and my penis ended up in his mouth.
At the moment, I didn’t think much about how it will affect us. I just let him and he did it for a very long time. It was almost about a full half-hour when I came. He swallowed and everything. And then it hits me that my BEST FRIEND just gave me a blowjob. He went to the bathroom to wash his mouth and stuff and while he was doing that I just laid down and fell asleep in order to avoid talking about it.
When we woke up the next morning he was already awake and playing Playstation. We started laughing about how trashed we were last night and he sneaks in a question about how much I remember from last night. I told him not much and then I left it alone. I don’t think he believed me. Ever since then, it’s been extremely awkward between us. Whenever he comes over we never really talk about stuff like we used to and most times I’d find reasons to uninvite him. I even went as far as saying I have to walk my dog. There’s no way he can’t tell I’m purposely avoiding him.
Honestly, I can deal with the fact that he’s gay. I always wondered about him because he can never really keep a girlfriend and he seems more attached to his guy friends than his own flavor-of-the-week girlfriend. Speaking of his “girlfriends”, he’s recently been parading his heterosexuality around me. He’s supposedly having sex with different girls everyday. It’s not that hard to believe since the girls he mention are attracted to him and they’re also promiscuous. It’s just that he’s really starting to lose respect for me. I don’t know how to tell him that without him thinking I’m secretly crushing on him or something. I really do miss him. We’ve been best buds since 4th grade and now he’s a stranger in every sense of the word. I’m scared that if I force him to admit that he’s gay then he’s going to shut me out forever.
How should I confront him about our friendship and everything else that happened over the past few months?
Read the answer at Scarleteen here.
Hi! I am a 15 year old female and I think I may be bisexual, I have talked to a couple friends (who are straight) that I trust, They either said “It’s just a phase don’t worry” Or “There is only one way to know and that is to have sex/kiss another female.” But I don’t know any lesbian girls to do that with! I’m pretty sure it’s NOT a phase but I need to know how to find out if I’m bi or not. My school/parents are not very accepting of lesbians, bi’s and gays, so I wouldn’t be able to talk to my parents. Another thing is I’m secretly sort of wanting to do something with a girl. Please help me!I feel so lost!Robin L. replies:
Have all of your straight friends had sex with a guy if they’re girls, or with a girl if they’re guys? If not, how do they know they’re straight?
See how silly that is? Hopefully they will, too. It’s not sound to make orientation something anyone needs to “prove” with sex for a whole lot of reasons. Not only does that add something pretty dehumanizing to people’s intimacies, sexual orientation is about feelings, not actions. It’s about what sexual or romantic feelings we have with or about people in terms of their gender. If we do or don’t have sex with those people — or do with people outside any given gender group we feel attraction towards — doesn’t prove or disprove anything about our or anyone else’s orientation.
A bisexual person is usually defined and self-defined as either someone who can be or is attracted to men and women alike, or to someone of any gender, though not always at the same time. Sometimes people think that bisexuality means being attracted to everyone at once, or just everyone, period, and feel fear and mistrust of bisexuals because of that. While there certainly wouldn’t be any reason to be fearful or judgmental of someone who earnestly was attracted to the whole wide world (what’s so scary about someone who thinks everyone is loveable and sexy, anyway?), for most bisexuals, just like for most of everyone else, attractions to people of any given gender are usually about more than their gender, and attraction to a given gender usually means to some people of that gender, not all people.
A bisexual person also isn’t always attracted to each gender equally or in the same way. For example, a woman might be attracted to women most of the time, but occasionally find men attractive or experience an attraction towards a specific man. Or, a bisexual guy might find that he feels stronger or more frequent emotional or romantic feelings towards men, but stronger or more frequent sexual attraction to women.
It is frustrating that people dismiss things that they don’t like or believe in, or that are inconvenient for them (or that they feel scared of) as being “just a phase”. That said, your bisexuality could be just a phase, but not in the way that your friends mean. And the same is true of your friend’s heterosexuality. The same is true of any aspect of sexuality for anyone, not just our orientation.
Sexuality is what we call fluid. Think about water, how it’s always moving, changing form based on the temperature around it and other factors like wind.
Sexuality is kind of like that. It can change based on where we are in life, what’s going on with us, or random factors that we can’t really figure out. So, if a type of sexuality is a phase for one person, it’s a phase for everyone. If bisexuality can be a phase (and it can), so can heterosexuality. That sexual fluidity applies just as much to people who identify and live as straight. I’d say, though, that your friends saying this is a phase probably isn’t so much about them understanding all of this as it’s about biphobia—a fear of bisexuality or bisexual people—or heteronormativity, which is a giant word that basically means the belief that everyone is inherently straight and the action that society being set up for straight people as a default.
Read the rest of this great answer from Scarleteen volunteer Robin here.
I’ve noticed in my personal life that all my friends don’t necessarily “come out”–over the last few years, a few have just started dating people of the same gender. Most did not announce a change in their orientation. Some identify as queer, while others simply say, “That’s who I fell for.” This isn’t to say that the concept of coming out is “a white thing”–that would be incorrect as well. But rather, the spectrum of ideas discussed is a little broader in communities of color. I don’t normally hear the term “same-gender loving” outside of black and queer spaces. I read about aggressives in Vibe, years ago–I didn’t start hearing the term “butch” until I encountered stories from other communities. So perhaps there’s another element not being considered around Ocean’s conception of self: racialized experiences.
Read the rest at Racialicious here.
My Son Looks Like a Girl. So What?
My 12-year-old son has hair halfway down his back, and the fact that the bottom half of it is currently pink does not seem to be clarifying anything for anybody: everyone, everywhere assumes he’s a girl.
This is fine with him when people are nice about it, or when someone tells me how beautiful my daughters are (“a compliment is a compliment” seems to be his sensible motto). It’s less fine with him when people are dolts, like the security guy in the airport who said, “What’s your name, sweetheart?” then recoiled from Ben as though he’d suddenly found himself hitting on RuPaul. Or the guy at school who pinned him to the ground and cut off all his hair.
Oh, wait. That didn’t happen to Ben. But it did happen to somebody, and I’m thinking of it in the wake of President Obama’s fully evolved support of gay marriage alongside Mitt Romney’s apology for his bullying of a schoolmate: “There’s no question that I did some stupid things in high school, and obviously, if I hurt anyone by virtue of that, I would be very sorry for it and apologize for it,” although Mr. Romney also says, “the thought that that fellow was homosexual was the furthest thing from our minds back in the 1960s.”
Even looking back 50 years, Mr. Romney’s claim that the boy’s sexuality was not part of the equation feels implausible to me. Because that’s always the point with children who don’t look right, right? It’s that the refusal by some men and women to dress the part means that the great human drama (a k a heterosexuality) can’t be cast correctly. If we don’t know which is which, how we can pair up everyone in properly reproductive two-by-twos, Noah’s Ark-style?
Read the rest of this great post from Catherine Newman at the New York Times here.
A new report looking at bisexual inclusion and equality issues has found that of all the larger sexual identity groups, bisexual people have the worst mental health problems including higher rates of depression, anxiety, self-harm and suicide. This has been found in the UK and internationally, and is linked to experiences of biphobia and bisexual invisibility.
The report, led by Dr Meg Barker, Senior Lecturer in Psychology at The Open University, found that bisexual people experience biphobia, distinct from homophobia. Attitudes towards bisexual people were found to be more negative than those towards other minority groups, with them often being stereotyped as promiscuous, incapable of monogamy, a threat to relationships and spreaders of disease.
Dr Barker said, “Government policy and equalities agendas generally consider lesbian, gay and bisexual issues together. However bisexual people often face prejudice from within lesbian and gay groups as well as heterosexual communities. They are invisible – not represented in mainstream media, policy, legislation or within lesbian and gay communities. Government and communities need to single out bisexual people as a separate group in order to address this equality gap.”
Although the attitudes and behaviours of others, and exclusionary structures, cause issues for bisexual people, the report found that there are many positive aspects to bisexual peoples’ experiences – the ability to develop identities and relationships without restrictions, linked to a sense of independence, self-awareness and authenticity. Bisexual people also speak of their acceptance and appreciation of others’ differences and feel well-placed to notice and challenge social biases and assumptions beyond sexuality.
Stonewall Policy Officer Alice Ashworth said: ‘We’re delighted to endorse this report, which builds on Stonewall research looking at the distinct experiences of bisexual people. Bi people will be pleased to know that researchers really do understand their needs. Now it’s important for service providers, the media and employers to take those needs seriously – we hope this important work helps them to do that.’
The Bisexuality Report: Bisexual inclusion in LGBT equality and diversity was written by Meg Barker, Christina Richards (Senior Specialist Psychology Associate at the West London Mental Health NHS Trust), Rebecca Jones (Lecturer in the Faculty of Health and Social Care at The Open University), Helen Bowes-Catton (PhD student in the Psychology Department at The Open University) and Tracy Plowman (independent scholar) – all of BiUK, with Jen Yockney (of Bi Community News) and Marcus Morgan (of The Bisexual Index).
The full report is available at: http://www8.open.ac.uk/ccig/files/ccig/BisexualityReport_final.pdf