Why I Am Queerly Gendered

It feels a little disingenuous to call myself “Queerly Gendered” since I am a female-bodied woman, and generally comfortable with that state.  I chose the name mostly because I used it in a previous class presentation (I was The Queerly Gendered Committee, presenting on the ways in which Dr. Horrible is, at its core, the story of a man in drag – my outfit, it was fabulous) and partly because I just love the way it sounds – “Queerly Gendered.”  The double-entendre appeals to me.  Is my gender queer because it is odd, or because it is queer like my sexual orientation?

But there’s another reason for choosing the moniker, a reason that I hadn’t really ever taken time to consider at length or own as a part of my (shifting, fluid) identity.  My gender appears to be bending of its own volition.  Definitions of feminine and masculine that I have always been privately comfortable with, particularly and almost exclusively regarding sex roles, suddenly just don’t seem to fit.  What does the desire to put on a boy’s body mean for my gender identity?  What is this new urge not simply to cross-dress but to… cross-body?  This is not something I feel often enough or strongly enough to take to surgical levels, but it is strong enough and comes up often enough to have shifted and reshaped my view of my own gender.

This quicksand shift in my view of my gender has been both fun and fraught with anxiety.  It is uncomfortable to feel uncomfortable with old labels.  It is disconcerting to feel the sudden, seemingly inexplicable, unavoidable urge to do and be something other than what I’ve always done and been.  I can’t and don’t claim to have experienced anything like the trans* experience, and I am aware that this slight queering of my gender is just that – slight – but it’s been paradigm-shattering for me.

I agree with Gender Ambiguous that most of us feel uncomfortable with the intersection of body and gender at some point in our lives, but this experience has been something new (for me).

So, while the pseudonym Queerly Gendered was, mostly, just a play on words, it is also something much more personal.

My gender?  Queer.

~ by Gloom Fairy on April 13, 2010.

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