Totally not sim or game related. I used to have a blog for this kind of post, but it’s years since I posted there – so I’ll just say this here.
I have a complex relationship with Pride and the LGBT (or LGBTQA+) community. In a nutshell, I’m the A – the asexual – when it’s not being used for “ally” in the alphabet.
When I can’t be the “A” then I try to think of myself as a type of Queer. Queer to me is someone who might not be one of the four “cornerstones” of LGBT (lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender), but they’re not heterosexual. Queer means I get to be a part of the alphabet soup. Except, I keep waiting for someone to call me out as not “queer” enough for Pride since I’m not having interesting sex. I’m waiting for them to say I’m really the “A is for ally” since I haven’t struggled the same way. That I’m not oppressed enough to be proud.
It’s true, unlike others in the pride community, my sexual orientation has not made me afraid that I will get beat up, discriminated against, or otherwise harmed if I disclose it. There aren’t currenly laws that make it so when I’m ill or injured my non-existant significant other can’t make decisions for me. No one is trying to stop me from not marrying and enacting laws to limit who I can’t have sex with. I don’t have to worry about using restrooms. When someone calls me sir, my gender isn’t invalidated. No one has thrown stones at me for being who I am.
I know that I’m lucky. I’m “straight-passing” which is a term I just read about and it’s guarenteed to make me scream if I think too long on it. Because I’m not trying to kiss or marry another girl, I must be the default of straight? There are two sides to the LGBT fight – the political/legal is only one of them. (And yes, it’s extremely important). The second is social acceptance for who you say you are and that is one we all share.
It’s not just “straight” folks who dont’ accept who I am. I’ve heard these things from gay and straight alike as well as society as a whole. And I can say it hurts the most when it comes from the LGBT community.
- I’m just scared or confused
- I’m going to fall hard someday and they can’t wait
- Don’t worry, I will find someone
- I should try girls
- I should be open to experimenting so I’d know for sure
- I’ve just got a low sex drive
- Who I am now isn’t forever and I should look forward to it changing
- I must have low self-esteem because I don’t think I’m attractive
- That they were just like me but then found the love of their life
I am blessed that all my close friends and family accept me whole heartedly. But I get tired of justifying myself. And I get tired of being erased.
It took me thirty years to get here. Fifteen years to realize that the sexuality that I told myself I was in high school was actually a legit thing that others experienced and not just a cop-out for having a low sex drive and not being sure if I liked guys or girls. Fifteen years of not realizing that there were others who felt like I do.
And you tell me that’s normal? That my experiences match those of straight folks? That’s I’m not queer enough becuase I’m not politically struggling or legally oppressed? Fuck you.
And I’m one of the lucky ones. I’m well-adjusted, independant, and happy to be by myself. No one is asking me when I’ll settle down with a nice guy or girl. I have not been subject to corrective rape from others certain a good fuck can cure them. I never felt depressed about my lack of relationships or felt I had to turn to doctors and hormones to see if they could cure me. I never felt broken. I never felt that what I was was wrong or want to change it. Imagine if I was one of the asexuals who had those experiences and you told me then I wasn’t queer enough for pride. That I wasn’t oppressed enough.
Asexual, aromantic, and autochorissexual (sex positive – but I don’t want to have sex. Learn new things every day, eh?) Above all else, I’m happy.
I haven’t felt felt the pride of belonging to the larger LGBTQA+ community. I haven’t felt that I can wave my flag and banner and be “queer” enough not to be questioned. I haven’t felt like the “A” just might be there for me.
Being an ally is not the same as being one of the people the group is about. I’m not an ally, I’m asexual. And I promise that I’ll keep working on being proud.
Credit where credit is due. These are the two posts that inspired this reaction/reflection. The images I mostly stole off the Asexual Aces facebook page.
- “A” is for Asexual: Erasing the Asexual Orientation
- So You Call Yourself an Ally: 10 Things All ‘Allies’ Need to know