Blog Archives

Corsets and Eyeliner

So… What’s your type?   People have always tried to get me to answer this question and not a single person has ever believed me when I answer honestly and explain that people are nice looking but not sexually attractive until I get to know them, I don’t want to have passionate sex with anyone until I can have a passionate discussion, but that answer has only been viewed as a half-truth or an out-right lie.

So now I’ll be completely honest about what traits and behaviors I’m attracted to!

I’m attracted to: confidence, a good sense of humor, activism, bright eyes, self-awareness, sarcasm, passion, soft skin, rough hands, individuality, compassion, a thirst for knowledge, people who wear corsets as/over shirts, avid readers, good writers, people who share my interests, people in my fandoms, Hufflepuffs and people with eyeliner on.  This is FAR from a conclusive list, but if I were to find someone who had/did all of this then I may just want to jump their bones on the spot, although I’d get consent first (safe, sane and consensual!) because that’s important.

Yours in Queerness,
Duo Spiritus

“No Homo lolol!”

“No homo” is a phrase I’ve heard and seen after phrases as innocuous as (“I love your shoes”) to the most sapphic (“Your tits look GREAT in that top”) and no matter what precedes it the phrase confounds me.   What about paying someone a complement indicates romantic interest?  And isn’t romantic interest just another complement?   If you understand this phenomenon, feel free to explain it to me but if you are as confused as I am then feel free to share this question with whomever insists that they are “no homo.”

Yours in Queerness,
Duo Spiritus

Where’s The Restroom?

Earlier this month I was blessed with the chance to attend a leadership and activist training as well as participate in a day of advocacy at a state level, this was my second year attending this summit and, to be honest, one of my main reasons for returning had nothing to do with the change I could make.  I wanted to go so I could spend a weekend surrounded by people who asked for my P.G.P. (Preferred Gender Pronoun), in a place where ALL the bathrooms were gender neutral and where I knew I’d be accepted as I am.  When I left I realized just how important having a gender neutral bathroom was, and how often I risked my own health to avoid choosing one or the other, I realized that if I know I’ll be able to make it to a gender neutral bathroom I’ll simply hold it even if I get an infection because of it.  I realized how uncomfortable I always am when I have to choose based on biology and I realized that if I feel this way then I can’t be alone.

If someone as self assured as myself is afraid to choose a bathroom based on comfort then how can we expect others to do the same?  If someone as confident in their gender as I feels diminished and trapped by the bathroom choice then how must it make those just coming out to themselves feel? And what can we do about it?

I can’t answer about the feelings of others, but I can tell you what you can do; If you find a place with gender neutral bathrooms you can let them know how much it means to people, if you find a business that has gender neutral bathrooms you should choose them over their competitors and if you have a place you feel safe enough suggesting gender neutral bathrooms then you should do it.

Yours in Queerness,
Duo Spiritus

Sugar and Spice and Everything Nice…

I was talking with some women a few days ago about the expectations of their gender that bothered them most, the unanimous answer seemed to be having their anger belittled. “It’s your time of the month isn’t it?” “Calm down, it’s just PMS.” And other such jokes are the most overt ways that women and girls are told that it’s not ACCEPTABLE for them to be angry, that their anger or annoyance isn’t as IMPORTANT as someone else’s.  It gets subtler and more damaging too; if a little boy hits someone out of anger in play I’ve seen them scolded for violence and told to find better ways to deal with anger, but if a little girl does the same thing she is informed that “it isn’t ladylike to hit” and that she “shouldn’t get so upset about thing.” What is the message there? To me the message is simply that anger is for boys.

The double standard is perpetuated through nursery rhymes such as “ What are little boys made of? Snips and snails, and puppy dogs tails. That’s what little boys are made of ! What are little girls made of? Sugar and spice and all things nice. That’s what little girls are made of!” and the toys given to children, when older kids are roughhousing and misbehaving girls are called “trouble makers” while boys are just “being boys,” and when teens go through angry stages girls are always just hormonal while boys are rebelling and growing up.

Yours in queerness,
Duo Spiritus

“My Little Tomboy”

I haven’t written in a while because I haven’t had much to write about but recently I was at a sleepover and we got to talking about the pros and cons of being our gender, one of the males in the group said that one of the downsides of being male was that it’s less acceptable for you to express feminine interests or mannerisms while if your female it’s more acceptable to express masculine interests and mannerisms. That conversation stayed in my mind as I slept that night (or from three in the morning when we went to sleep until six when I woke up) and until now as I write about it, as I thought about it I realized something that was new to me although I’m sure many others have determined this already; I finally understood WHY what my friend (We’ll call him Jim) said was true, Jim’s point was accurate because in our culture masculinity is associated with power and strength while femininity is linked with submission and weakness. A female bodied person who embraces all or some aspects of stereotypical masculinity is viewed as wanting power, and wanting power is socially acceptable, while a male bodied person who embraces conventional aspects of femininity is impossible to understand because it feels like someone trading strength for weakness.

That epiphany got me wondering how, in what we call “western” culture, masculinity became synonymous with strength and power when in so many older societies the people who bore the children were considered the powerful and the strong. What causes a society to be matriarchal or patriarchal in the first place? What might cause a shift of power? Why is it that in a communities that deny sexism a little girl can be called a “tomboy” affectionately while the term “sissy boy” is still derogatory? What do you think?

Yours in queerness,
Duo Spiritus

Fear

**This post may contain spoilers regarding the book Divergent by Veronica Roth, if that bothers you, skip to the conclusion.**

So I’ve been listening to the audio book of Divergent, and I’ve reached a few conclusions and even more questions, mostly about myself. I’ve concluded that, most likely, the aptitude test would place me in Amity, Erudite or Dauntless (or I’d be Divergent) and that I would choose Dauntless with very little hesitation. I also realized that if I were to be forced to face my innermost fears rather then the fears I allow myself to think about I would most likely be surprised.

**At this point if you want to avoid spoilers you can read again**

I have spent many years of my life finding, facing and/or controlling my fears, the physical ones at least. I once feared heights and so, like Keladry, (Protector of the Small quartet by Tamora Pierce) I forced myself to face heights whenever I could, I rode roller coasters and thrill rides that forced me onto high places and then dropped me from them, I climbed things and jumped down, I went up tall buildings and looked down until the fact my brain told me to be afraid had no effect on my body or my clarity of thought. There was a time I feared fire, I learned everything I could about fire, I played with fire and in time I learned to understand fire until when I saw fire I felt both fear and attraction.

**Spoilers, but mild ones that shouldn’t really spoil anything at all unless you’ve already guessed what will happen next**

Other then Heights and Fire I have not suffered from many fears, not counting those that came from lack of worldly experience, but I knew there had to be things I fear besides those two obvious choices. And then Divergent reminded me of fears outside the physical. I realized how much I fear vulnerability, how much I fear intimacy, how much I fear a lack of intimacy and how much I fear removing the armor I have constructed around my emotions and affections.

**Spoilers are all gone, go ahead and read.**

When I realized those fears I realized that those fears may just be why I have never opened up to someone in a romantic way. Not only did I fear rejection I feared the vulnerability and the weakness that comes with it. But like all my other fears I know that by acknowledging this one I can face it and control it. Well, I hope I can…

I now have an internal debate about how to deal with these fears; one side argues that both physical and emotional intimacy will get easier if I just practice, just get it over with, while the other says that I should ease into it starting emotionally and, eventually, ending physically when the moment is right. Over the weekend at a party the “get it over with like a band-aid” part of me won out for a while and I had my first “kiss,” although I hesitate to call the small collection of three second pecks actual kisses. This was of course while playing two different silly party games; Suck and blow, a game in which you move a card of some sort around a circle of people by first holding it to your mouth by sucking in air and then pass it to your neighbor by them sucking in air while you blow out air, and if you or your neighbor drops the card you have to kiss and then spin the bottle. The unromantic, three second kisses while somebody counts the seconds were awkward to say the least and most of me doesn’t even count any of them as a “first kiss.” But another part of me is glad I didn’t make it to seventeen and never been kissed.

But I’m off topic, and as you can clearly see, the topic is fear. What do you fear? Have you faced it? Controlled it? If not, why? Let me know in the comments below!

Yours in Queerness,
Duo Spiritus

Well It’s Christmas Eve (for most people)

And for most that means some kind of family tradition; be it Chinese food, fondue, open just ONE present, breakfast for dinner, making cookies or anything else.

I know in my family we have dinner at my aunts house every year on Christmas eve, exchange gifts and then go home and open one gift before leaving cookies and milk out for Santa.

What do you do for Christmas eve? Even if you don’t celebrate Christmas.  Does your family have any other fun holiday traditions for this time of year?  Do you have any funny holiday stories?  Share them with the world!

Curfew!

So I live in a city with a curfew law for minors, 10:00 PM.  Unless you are running an errand for a parent, or don’t get caught.

I break curfew all the time, with parental consent, sometimes I actually AM running an errand for my mom but most of the time I’m hanging out with friends and my fiends do the same, we have yet to be stopped.  We walk around like we know what we are doing and are doing what we need to.

I understand that curfew laws are supposed to lessen crimes by and against youth, but the youth who commit crimes are just going to break curfew, and curfew infringes on the legal rights of youth in the first place, breaking laws in a way that affects youth.  So that argument invalid.  I’ve also heard that the curfew law is supposed to give the police a reason to stop youth who look like they are misbehaving but the fact a person looks suspicious IS reason to stop them, so that argument is as valid as the first one.

The arguments AGAINST curfew laws are so plentiful I could not begin to list them here, but I will share my own.  The people who follow the curfew laws are the people who would not be outside after 10 PM, unless they had an errand for their parent, without a curfew.  Everyone else is going to ignore the curfew, especially the subset of youth who need it.  I say let parents set a curfew, let cops stop anyone who suspicious and let humans under 18 have the same rights as those humans over 18 years of age.

Do you have a curfew law where you live?  Is it as stupid as mine? Do you agree with curfew laws? Do you agree with me?  Let me know in a comment.

 

Sex (The Good, Safe Kind)

Yesterday I attended a “presentation” about safe sex for queer youth, there were so many problems with the presenter I could not begin to address them all in my blog.  But I CAN try to give better answers (based on research, not expertise) to the questions that came up.  But remember, I am not a doctor or any other expert on sex of any kind, so read what I have to say and then go look at the resources I paired with each question .  And ask a real doctor any important questions.

Q.  Could I get HIV/AIDS from food?  Or any STD really….

A.  Nearly all STDs are transmitted only by the exchange of blood or genital secretions, the exceptions to that rule are genital warts and herpes (as far as I know) in which case it is contact between the sore or wart (as well as blood and genital secretions) and sensitive skin or a wound that can result in contracting the STD.   The best way to be safe and avoid STDs is to only have sex with a person you love and trust, and both you and your partner getting tested regularly.

http://kidshealth.org/teen/sexual_health/stds/std.html#

Q.  What is a Dental Dam? 

A.   A dental dam is a piece of latex or silicone that one should place between their mouth and their patners vagina/anus when participating in oral sex.  This creates a barrier between partners to prevent spreading of STDs and should be used if you do not know if your partner is free of STDs or you know your partner does indeed have an STD.  But the best way to prevent STDs is still to be picky about who you have sex with.  Although in the singular case of deantal dams a QUALITY plastic wrap will work as well.

http://www.pamf.org/teen/sex/std/oral/dentaldam.html

Q.  If I ask my doctor for birth control/plan B wont they tell my parents?

A.  At age twelve your parents have no right to information shared between you and your gynecologist, for females age twelve is the age they receive legal control over the reproductive health.  I do not know if the same is true for biological males…

Q. What about “Pulling out?” Doesn’t that work too?

A.  No, “pulling out” provides no protection against STDs and very little protection against unwanted pregnancy.  There are indeed sperm in pre-ejaculatory fluids. (pre-cum)

http://www.plannedparenthood.org/health-topics/birth-control/withdrawal-pull-out-method-4218.htm

 

Remember to do your own research, using reliable sources, and wait to have sex until you and a partner you love are ready.

Yours in Queerness,

Duo Spiritus

A Glossary of Terms

I realized I’ve used a lot of words that aren’t commonly understood in my blogs, I thought it might be useful for readers who aren’t as queer-savvy as I am if I defined some of the more unusual terms I use. Feel free to use this post as a place to ask me about any words I used that are new to you or ask questions about definitions. Or give me word puzzles, I like those…

So let us commence with the words!

Gender Binary: This is the idea of gender that I find to be incorrect. The gender binary is the idea that there are only two genders; Male and Female, and that a person is either one or the other.

Two Spirit: This is an ancient ideology about gender, nearly every tribe of ancient people on the American continent, and many on both the African and Asian continents, has that states there are people born with both Male and Female spirits inside their bodies/minds. A person with two spirits may be biologically male or female or they may be born with ambiguous genitalia. Someone with two spirits may present as androgynous, as the gender that is “opposite” their sex-at-birth or a style that encompasses all gender norms.

Pansexual: Pansexuality is a sexual orientation that unlike homosexuality or heterosexuality is love without gender bounds. A person who is pansexual may fall in love with a woman or a man, be they biological or transgender, or someone who is outside of the gender binary.

Queer: I use Queer as an alternative to LGBT or any other initial as it is shorter and more inclusive then any set of initials could be.

I’ll update this as I see fit, or as you need me to.