Monday, 4 April 2016

Labels - Am I Genderfluid?

Labels can be incredibly important when you are trying to find your place in the world, especially if you are different from the norm. When you find a label that fits how you think or feel, it can then help you find your tribe, others who think or feel the same way as you. It also makes conveying how you feel on the inside to other people easier, especially when its difficult to put into words. Some people dont think labels are helpful, that you should be happy expressing your individuality. I think that is certainly something to aim for, but its something that comes with age and experience. When you are still discovering yourself, I think finding others like you is incredibly important as it can help to normalise what you are thinking and feeling. It can also make trying to explain to others about what makes your gender tick a lot easier. If they dont get it, tell them to Google it. :)

Ive been using Trans* and Transgender to describe myself for quite some time, but feel that these are woefully inadequate as they are catch all, umbrella terms. However, going back a few years now, to my understanding if you were a part timer you could only really call yourself a Transvestite or a Crossdresser, both labels which mean different things to different people, both of which have never quite sat right with me and also come with the obvious baggage that id rather avoid. These days though, there is a lot more terminology used to describe various different states of being within the gender spectrum, in an effort to try and reflect the vast array of differences between how people feel about and need to express their gender identity.

So, where do I fit into all this? What new-fangled terminology has jumped out at me? I guess Genderfluid seems to be the one that I can relate to the most. Sometimes I can function fine as a man, grudgingly sure, but its not the end of the world. Other times, well, I think I just need to express my female side more. And when I cant I guess its that inability to be myself that gets me down. While there is always a minimally negative undertone to my life and attitude to it, how I feel about my gender is certainly not consistent (some would say, its fluid), and the highs and lows seem to come and go with peaks of varying heights.

So now ive got this label, does this automatically make me feel better about myself? No, not really. But now its easier to put into words what is going on in my crazy head, which can help me make a bit more sense out of it, I think. It also makes explaining what I am a bit more specific than the vague Trans* label ive used up to now. Plus, it definitely sounds better than Transvestite, and the Little Britain-esque image that conjures.

So yeah, I am Genderfluid.