Butch Lesbians and Masculine Privilege- A fable with a lesson at the end

Growing up, I was never a tomboy. I liked glittery puffpaint and cheap-smelling lipgloss and would stare for hours into the mirror, coming my hair into the tightest, smoothest ponytail possible. I liked my expensive American Girl doll (Kirsten, of course, the blond one) and I liked all my thrift-store purses and I liked Barbie, most of all. I would wash Barbie’s hair and carefully paint Barbie’s lips with red marker and sew tiny clothes for Barbie out of old socks in the single shaft of light that fell onto my carpeted bedroom floor. I had Eskimo Barbie (she wore a rick-rack parka and fur-trimmed mukluks on her long, European legs) and All American Barbie (she wore a denim vest with hamburgers and hotdogs on it) and nameless beach Barbie you could get for cheap. I also had two Kens, one a regular Mattel Ken and the other an off-brand Ken, with a wider waist and worse hair. The only mildly queer story I ever acted out with my dolls involved these two Kens- one of them was given wadded-tissue and scotch-tape breasts and made to wear a custom sock-dress and go on a date with the other, unsuspecting Ken. There was always a horrible scene when Straight Ken found out that Cross-dresser Ken was in drag. I played with my barbies right up to highschool.

I was in sixth grade the first time I tried to shave my legs. I cut myself badly- long, stinging, shallow cuts, and was horrified at how much blood there was. I persevered and eventually mastered the tedious art of leg-shaving, stealing cans of harshly-scented shaving cream from the drugstore and wide, girly razors that smeared lotion on you as you clearcut. I loved the feeling of brand-new legs, all that childish fur gone. I read Seventeen magazine fanatically, at the public library, crouched in a booth in my cheap second-hand winter coat, carefully studying each page. Someday, I said to myself. Someday.

And I was a sissy. I was terrified of hurting myself, of getting dirt into the folds of my palms, of jumping into bodies of water, of swinging too high, of touching wood and getting splinters. I was petrified of any game involving a ball- basketball, volleyball, dodgeball. I was more of a wuss, even, than any of the other girls, and opted out of their scary, fast-paced playground games to sit by myself instead, under the wooden bridge between two jungle gyms, dancing two sticks together in my hands and having them act out dramas.

I was never a tomboy.

In high school, I did not have many friends, but I had boyfriends. One after another, in a long string. Potheads and the chronically shy and smelly, acne-prone boys who liked WWF and Rammstein. I didn’t have a bone for any of them, but we would cut class and wander to a scrub-choked irrigation ditch in the desert behind school, and they would finger-fuck me, awkwardly. They were always too stoned to get it up, and I played along for the company and validation. After school we would make out in the backseat of their fogged-up car and then go to their mom’s house, which was cluttered and smelled like litter box, to watch a Doors documentary in their darkened bedroom. They all smelled the same- like cheap laundry detergent and dirty socks. And they liked me a lot, each in their own way, even though I was all ingrown inside of myself, folded up like a moth in wintertime.

When I was seventeen I’d moved out of my Grandparent’s house and was spending my senior year of high school in an apartment with my newest boyfriend, who was older. He was twenty-two and very short, but at least he had clear skin and an endearing New Jersey accent. I sort of liked him, but a few months later I got my first vibrator and it was all over. I had my first orgasm with this little device, and when I turned eighteen I broke up with my New Jersey boyfriend, moving in with some cokeheads and vowing never to date someone who didn’t get me off.

There were approximately four punk kids in the desert town where I lived, and Chris was one of them. And he was Hot. He was tall and narrow like a snake, with flat hard muscles all over his body and watery blue eyes. He was a skateboarder and had all these vaguely rockabilly, vaguely racist, vaguely original tattoos: an iron cross and his initials wearing crowns, in flames, and the words S T A Y G O L D in gothic script across his stomach. He got another one, later, that I liked most of all- it was a cowboy, eyes blindfolded, holding a television and pointing a pistol right at you. On the television was another cowboy, pointing another gun in your direction. I was considered fairly hot, myself, at the time- I’d been starving myself off and on all through highschool and had finally perfected my technique- I counted the calories in everything I ate and made sure that most of the time, I was hungry. So I was tiny and tan and girly and mildly punk- but not in any way that gave me any confidence or sense of self-worth, or challenged existing gender roles. And I still, more than ever, needed my boyfriend to make me feel like it was ok for me to exist.

Chris and I were deeply in love. We really were. I was fresh out of highschool, working graveyard shifts at Denny’s, and he worked at Home Depot, stocking lumber. He would pick me up in his newish gold car with the stick-on racing stripes and we would go driving out in the desert- gas was cheap and it was what everybody did, just drive in the desert for hours. I had just come out of my six-month rave-going drug phase, and had recently chopped off my long blacklight-reflective yellow hair, although I still had an affinity for bracelets made of cheap plastic beads and fruit-punch flavored Gatorade. When we had sex it was intense, and good, and fun, and it made me fall even farther in love with him, because I didn’t know anything else but this, and this was as good as things had ever been. We saw something in each other, too, something half-hidden. He was funny, and weird, and there was a sparkle in his eyes that said that he was smarter than all of this, smarter than the desert and the cheap gas and the home depot, but that he didn’t know what was out there and he didn’t understand it and it scared him. He saw something in me too, something I didn’t even have a name for, and he’d look over at me, eyes bright, and say You’re going to leave me. You’re wild. You’re going to leave me someday. And he’d neigh like a pony and buck his torso, hands up in the air like hooves.

I did leave him. When I was nineteen I packed up my Honda prelude with all my fiber-optic lights and plastic bins of cosmetics and drove the eighteen hours to Portland with an older cousin, J, who was moving there. On the way we took some ADERAL, which I had never done (I avoided speed-like drugs in general, those were the territory of my brother and his gun-loving friends) and ended up talking, seamlessly and solidly, about the US government and its history of oppression, of which I knew nothing, for all of those eighteen hours. J was fairly radical and a sort of genius besides- he had read A People’s History of the United States, a fat, wordy book the size of a loaf of bread, in one day. By the time we got to Portland, I was a different person. It was November. Another cousin, J’s brother, welcomed us into his moldy, humid apartment in SE Portland, and put a can of Pabst in my hand.

A few years later I decided I wanted to be gay. Not just part-time, in-my-head, pretend-to-be-gay because it’s hot gay, sexy-girl on sexy-girl make-out-at-a-party gay, which, believe it or not, had been popular even when I was in high school, but real, don’t-date-any-boys and lose the chance of precious, highly-prized male-validation gay. I had been gay, here and there, for brief moments of time in my otherwise hetero-normative history- making out with my best friend in high school, both of us high on muscle relaxants, she’s doing it for the sake of the guys watching, I’m doing it because I’m in love with her, things like that. But mostly I had just dated boys- because it was easy to date them, they were everywhere, and they validated my existence. Other girls had just been there for competition, and show. Their attention was little compared to the real prize- the validation of those who had been socialized male. And we would fight for it, sever the already-thin threads of our friendships over it. I was shot through with internalized sexism like a cancer.

But I wanted to be Real Gay. I’d already stopped starving myself, learned how to cook, and traded my car for a bike. Going Gay seemed like the logical next step. But I’d been living in a city for a few years as a straight person, and I didn’t know how to go about letting people know I’d Turned Gay. I had a housemate who identified as queer, and she gave me some advice.

“Cut your hair off. You have to cut your hair off. If you don’t cut your hair off, no-one will think you’re gay.” I had long brown hair at the time, which I did nothing with. I was feminine, but in a lazy way. I wore party dresses from the goodwill when I went out dancing, and in the summer I wore ugly cargo shorts and chacos.

After I cut my hair off I looked boyish, and then I went to a new town for a while, where I could be gay to everyone I met and no-one would know that I had been straight. And it worked. In fact, being a girl who looked like a boy was like the Hot New Thing, and I had walked right into the middle of it. Everyone thought I was hot. All I had to do was put on a badly-fitting button-down and gay people wet themselves at the sight of me. It was like a magic spell or a fun new game, and it brought me sudden, instantaneous recognition. And the game, I found, was even more fun the harder you played it- I had a new butch girlfriend and she lent me her tool belt and taught me how to make a mustache with spirit gum and your own hair, and I pranced around, pretending to be a dude, much to the delight of everyone present. Playing with gender was fun! I had had no idea! We went to gay bars, we went to drag shows, and my mind was officially blown.

And there was something else, a an even more hidden benefit to this new boyishness. I felt safer. Traveling alone that fateful year, riding freight trains and scammed buses to the new town where I could be gay, my first long solo trip, I had felt much safer than I ever had. Guys no longer stared at me on the bus, no-one cat-called me from their porch. People who picked me up hitch-hiking thought I was a boy. I’d cut my hair and so I slipped under the radar- the radar that picks out potential victims, the radar that picks out weak girls. It was like I had gained a superpower.

And with a more masculine presentation, came the very different personal expectations. People assumed, now, all sorts of things about me that they hadn’t assumed before. They assumed that I was strong, that I was brave, that I was smart. When I told a joke people actually listened through to the end of it, because they already believed that I was funny. And people gave me more space, in general, to talk- to be the center of attention, to give my opinion on this thing or that thing, to tell stories. And I was smart and funny and brave, and I had been slowly bringing those things to light, in my own way- by riding freight trains alone, without the macho, condescending boys who had taught me to ride, by practicing my favorite jokes, by going to a new town and being gay. But with the inherent confidence in my abilities that came with presenting masculine, my self confidence began to shoot up like chickweed in a horse pasture, and it was a long time before it slowed down again.

And, I thought, what was wrong with that?

As time went on, I picked up more socialization from the queer community- sports bras were good but a flatter chest was better, even if wearing a binder compromised your digestion and hurt your back. A high voice was something to feel self-conscious of. Being naked no longer seemed right- when my clothes came off, my gender did too. It was like I’d finally managed to un-install all the beauty-standard software of my youth, only to have new software automatically installed, this one just as rigid. But the benefits felt good, and I stuck with it. And it allowed parts of me to come out that I’d never felt comfortable expressing before- this queerness was allowing me to be a different sort of girl- an ugly, faded, homely girl, who no boy would ever want. And that felt freeing, reckless, and brave.

I got rid of everything girly in my wardrobe. After years of aggressive over-grooming, I finally stopped plucking my eyebrows. I talked louder, I said less. I started to savor every interest I had that was remotely masculine- riding freight trains, sleeping in the woods, building badly-framed shacks with stolen windows and salvaged lumber, which I never finished. And people just thought I was so smart and cool. Which, I thought to myself, I surely deserved.

One spring I was in Portland and a friend light-heartedly accused me of being femme-phobic.

“Femme-phobic?” I said. “What the heck is that? And of course it’s not anything I am!” I felt embarrassed and upset. I had never even heard of the word! How could I be that if I didn’t even know what it was?

I’d been telling the friend about a woman I’d dated who’d been femme and had turned out, in the end, to be straight. I’d ended the story with the declaration that I wasn’t attracted to femmes anyway, and wouldn’t be making the mistake in the future.

“You’re femme-phobic!” Said my friend. I whined and argued, defensive, and conceded nothing. But later in private, I thought about what my friend had said. I thought and thought and thought about it. I went to sleep thinking about it. Femmephobic, I said in my sleep. Femme-phobic. Femme Pho Bic. And then it was like someone had taken a nutcracker to my skull and busted open my brain, filling it with illumination. Sexism hadn’t gone away! I suddenly realized. It had just gone away for me!

Sexism is the idea that women are less valuable than men. We are all sexist- it is the way we have been socialized. Growing up, I valued women, including myself, less than men. Once I became masculine, and looked and acted more like a man, other people valued me more, and I valued myself more. And I surrounded myself with masculine women the way I had previously surrounded myself with men- because their attention was worth more than that of more feminine women.

I couldn’t believe it. It was all the same. Nothing had changed- the more masculine queers were considered smarter, braver, and funnier, and they were allowed the lion’s share of the social pie. And they ran with it, too, I had been running with it- they bounced it off each other, off the more feminine queers, off the whole world. They played it like it was a kickball and we were all at recess. What fun! Hooray! Everything’s better! We’re free!

It was the oldest story in the book. And now that the glass had been cracked on my perfect, rose-colored dome, I couldn’t help but see it everywhere, in everything that I did. In the way that strangers reacted to me, in the looks I got when I went to queer dance nights. In the way I sucked up attention and funneled it back at other masculine queers, taking as much from those on the feminine end of the spectrum as possible. Even in the way I was attracted to people- I still idolized masculinity- the whole world, it seemed, did- and I may as well have stayed straight for all the feminist good I was doing. Masculine was good. Feminine was bad. That, I realized, was called Sexism. My awareness of it grew and grew, and with it came relief, as I realized that the illusion was gone. I could see it everywhere now, like the things that had changed along with my gender presentation had been tainted with a special dye, and they lit up when I looked at them. And as I unveiled that stubborn, insidious layer of masculine privilege, something broke open, and flew up out of my body like a ghost.

I stopped thinking femmes (aka myself, for the better part of my life) were repressed, dull, and unattractive, and learned to notice my own behavior and take a step back, sometimes, so that someone else could get some pie. I started to talk about it, and realized that everyone around me already was. My internalized sexism wasn’t all gone, of course, and never will be- socialization is like buckshot, and there will always be pieces of it under my skin. But at least I know it’s there, now. At least I can see it.

27 thoughts on “Butch Lesbians and Masculine Privilege- A fable with a lesson at the end

  1. Hmm, well written! Not much to say besides Ditto. Ditto. Ditto. I also like it when you write personal stories about yourself, your youth, and how you became who you are. You’re really good at it and its an amazing journey.

  2. Carrot darlin, one of these days I’m gonna sit down and read every fucking word you’ve written in this damn thing, but until that time, don’t hold it against me that I have yet to.

    I’m really happy I started here. I mean, with the subject heading you put on yr Myspace bulletin, I clearly couldn’t resist.

    It is terribly refreshing to hear about yr identity as a younger person. I think most people would never assume such things about you and you just sound so, for lack of better word, human. Seriously, yr words are always lovely and clever and clear and I frequently feel intimidated by you (this isn’t a bad thing, I’m always intimidated by folks who inspire me), but the entirety of this entry, particularly the former, made me feel like I get you so much better. Not that there was anything to “get.” Uh, I’m talking in circles.

    I really appreciate and respect yr use of personal experience to talk about sexism in the queer communities. Sometimes, I think I talk about things in a really detached way because the depth with which it affects me as a femme person, a woman at that, is really fucking painful.

    Anyway, all this to say, I get it. I love it. Thank you so much for writing it. xojenny bruso

  3. Lark- thanks so much, friend. You had a caboodle too? 😉

    Jenny- Your feedback means SO MUCH to me! I’m SO glad you like this post. You don’t even know! I was really nervous putting this one up, because it’s so personal. It IS hard to talk about this stuff. And I like your writing too, friend, what tiny amount I’ve been able to get my hands on! Do you write more? What do you do with it? Maybe the world needs it? You could start a blog- I would link to you…

  4. wow…you have the ability to lay it all down and describe it so clearly, i’m jealous. i want to have that crystalline vision for my own life. when i read your stories, you allow me to remember my stories at the same time. you are a true storyteller who affects me deeply, and i honor you.

  5. Heh. I had a caboodle. And the bad nail polish and the eye shadow and the long hair. Nice post. Ditto to Lark. Been thinking about this topic a lot lately because I find myself surrounded lately by a lot of super awesome, but not so much feminine women, who I really love, but who tend to talk down about the femme-type ladies, and I find it rather hard to reconcile my current friendship with them, and the fact that I was once exactly these people they’re trash talking, and that there are parts of it that I still like and are parts of me. It’s like having this secret past life you don’t talk about, like the witness protection program. Maybe I’ll write my own version of this piece someday soon…
    And also, three cheers for talking about sexism in all its hidden forms just in general.

  6. One of the most simple (yet powerful) truths is that “seeing” something, clearly and w/ honesty is the best way to finally get past it. I think you’re learning that to your benefit and to the benefit of those who take the time to read this.
    Also, very well written and played to it’s strengths. Great job.


  7. Carrott,

    You see what we know and write of it…we only vaguely know it and have not the sense to “out’ it in our own minds.

    Great post. Hard to do, I am sure, but as honest as it gets.

    Thank you…

  8. Thank you. So good. Yr writing helps keeps me awake thru my overnight shifts. Best compliment ever. Trust me.

    Thank you again from this femme.

  9. holy crap, Anonymous! your inappropriate anger is really annoying.

    carrot-i love this story, really do, your writing is concise and well constructed, with really good use of metaphor. thanks again for upping the ante.

  10. Carrot, thank you for sharing yourself with us. I love your writing and it adds to your debth to know you more as a person. You are a truly gifted writer and I hope someday you can be published and paid for the gift you give to others.

    May 2009 be a wonderful year for you!

  11. hey carrot, you know i am one of the most voracious readers of your blog, ever. and really, this is the most amazing entry.
    it was hard for me to read, in some ways, because it reminded me of my insecurity and fear and sense of invalidation often, being a very femme lesbian lady. and it reminded me of a lot of other things, most too personal to myself to write, and it reminded me of how dating butches is often very hard or impossible, or painful, because conversations like these rarely happen in our communities, i think it just easier for butch/masculine folks to suck up the power, like you said, in some ways “replace” the men, while women compete over them. obviously it does not happen always, there are butch/masculine queer people deeply invested to ending this shit, and there are so many queers who fall nowhere on the “butch/femme” spectrum. but when it does happen, it is painful, and silencing, and real.
    thank you for writing this. i know gender/sex/sexuality can be draining to talk about. you bravery is commended!

    also, i am starting my blog soon, for reals! blogging is so fun! i know read like 5 blogs on a regular basis!

  12. i meant now read. not know read. hmmpph. onto my next blog for the evening. and yes, it might be lindsay lohans

  13. Fascinating, clean . . . really well done post. Not quite sure where my thoughts are going to wind up after rereading it . . . but I’m looking forward to mulling it over.

  14. Carrot! You’re a genius! Really, you just explained my whole life.

    Also, really really really good writing. I bet if you put a bunch of essays like this together someone would publish them.

  15. Stranger in a van-

    don’t be jels! Practice makes perfect! I write so goddam much it turns my brain into a metaphor-thinking machine. And I am deeply honored by your compliment. I like your blog too by the way!

    Click Clack-

    Thanks so much and i’d love to hear your experience with this shit! I’d like to get as many viewpoints from as many different shades of gender/gender backgrounds as possible!


    It’s true! Actually being in touch with reality makes for healing and stuff.

  16. Reamus-

    I actually have my community to thank for “outing” this concept to me- I just wrote about it!


    I’m so flattered I can get you through overnight shifts. Thanks so much for reading!


    Thanks coach! You’re awesome!

  17. Anon-

    your well-wishes bring a tear to my eye.


    Hurry up and start a blog so I can be a voracious reader of it, too! And guest blog for me, already, talking about your experience! And I’m right there with you on that lilo shit. It almost breaks my heart what a terrible writer she is, but at least she’s not as bad as courtney love.


    Glad I could give you some good thinking material!


    Heart! Will YOU publish my essays? You could crank them out in your cabin. At sixty below, tho, the ink might freeze. 🙂

  18. Wow… that’s amazing of you to have spilled out so much of your life like that. It takes me a lot of poring over just to imagine myself in such a different life experience. That account was really profound.

    (saw your thing on craigslist)

  19. Very, very interesting. Quite well-written, to be sure. I’ve heard this theory of sexism/genderism in the queer community before, and while I found it easy to imagine in the “gay male community,” the concept hadn’t presented itself as plausibly widespread in the “lesbian community.” Perhaps it was because, as someone on the masculine end of the spectrum, that sort of transferred male privilege has not been a part of my experience. Nor did I know it to have been especially true for any of the masculine or andro women I knew. Perhaps that has more to do with race than anyone would care to admit. As an African-American, my masculinity causes me to be often enough mistaken for a black male, albeit a young one…an ever-feared element of American society. I don’t get the sense that it’s been in any significant way crippling for me; for as long as I can remember I’ve been a part of and have generally moved quite well in all kinds of social environments, whether they were predominantly female, male, black, white…or predominantly nothing at all. I know this to be at least in part because of my education and past accomplishments, but I like to think (even if naively) that it’s also because people care less about the color of your skin in the 21st millennium than they did in any other.

    But beyond that, I think I was most struck by the absence of any mention in your story of how being a rather masculine woman can and very, very often does in fact cause the opposite of your premise to be true; in many environments (queer ones included), feminine women are held in higher regard than masculine women, who are of course often thought to be somehow posing, unnaturally so. Since I first moved to this city a short while back, “Women who are women,” is a phrase I’ve been amazed to hear/see uttered/written so frequently, even though women in the northwest are generally less hyper-feminine than those in So Cal, where I’m from.

    Anyway, I could probably go on for days about the seeming differences in our experience. And maybe our experiences haven’t been so different after all. Reading a single biographical blog of yours hardly makes me knowledgeable about the scope of your experience, of course. But I mean to thank you for your sharing; it’s especially because your experience has been different from what I’ve known that I find it and the concept of queer femi-sexism so fascinating and worth deeply considering.

    Thanks for speaking your truths loud enough for others to hear.


  20. Wendy-

    So glad you got so much out of it! Thanks for reading!


    Wow, your perspective is so amazing/important to hear, thanks so much for responding! I know that my experience being butch is not, at all, everyone’s experience being butch- there are so many other factors- race, class, age, what queer community you hang out in. I, personally, can’t say that I’ve ever felt like being genderqueer has made things harder for me, other than the fact that I startle people in restrooms and guys don’t think I’m hot (which is fine) and in fact, they tend to treat me with more respect than when I was more feminine.

    I think, tho, that I would’ve experienced alot more oppression for my weird gender if I’d been genderqueer as a kid- I’m sure that’s when it really sucks, and the internalized oppression is pounded into you. But my gender was straight as an arrow growing up, and it wasn’t until I was old enough to choose to be in a supportive queer community that I came out as butch.

    So, my experience is very different from alot of follks’.

    I also think that a big reason for the differences in our experiences have to do with the fact that every queer community, all over the country/globe, is different. Queer community doesn’t have something like Mass Media (which is what keeps mainstream culture all on the same page) to homogenize it, and so everywhere you go, people have a different way of looking, a different way of talking, a different way of relating to each other- and different words to say things. I got one email response to this post from a person who thought they disagreed with me completely- but really we just used different words to describe things. I use “queer” because it’s inclusive of all sorts of genders, some people only use “lesbian” to describe the same group of people, and that, alone, can be confusing.

    Thanks so much for your response. I’m gonna go email you.

  21. i’ve been thinking about this a lot lately, so thanks for writing it. having been in the queer “scene” for 12 years and feeling that personally, for me, gender presentation is fluid, i’ve presented across the spectrum. i was a girly child, just as you described yourself. once i came out, for many years i was much more masculine than i am now, although was constantly told that i was “femme” anyway, perhaps because of the way i carry myself… not sure. in the past 3 years or so, i’ve swung back to being what most would call “femme” because it’s been fun and it’s felt right, but i do feel much more flexible underneath than what most queers impose on me. for one, i’ve only been able to date “masculine” queers in nyc even though i am open to otherwise. this presents a problem because it (at least) feels like there are many femmes and very few masculine queers out there, so i find myself with people who are unavailable or multiply engaged, while i don’t have that option. and otherwise, as far as how i act and present, it’s often taken with shock when i am brash, harsh, cocky… when i hold doors for other queers… it’s funny because now that i am “femme” i not only have to deal with attention from straight men (which i’d totally combatted when i shaved my head at 18!), but it seems implied that i am expected to act softer, more submissive, and invisible in the queer scene.

  22. Wow Carrot…

    That is Pure 100 proof courage and honesty bottled up in antique railyard glass, with a cork stopper in the mouth if I’ve ever seen it.


    You inspire me. Really.

  23. Wow it’s good to hear how your experiences led you to how you feel now, and unnerving being your brother lol. Your writing is amazing and I hope you find peace in it.. JohnQ

  24. Dear Carrot,

    Your piece was honest, innocent, original and real.

    If we lived life through labels, borders and stereotypes only, I rather not be a part of it. Your challenges, struggles or journey is one that can be identified it. Certainly, I identify with the life that you speak of, minus, the girly-Barbie era!


    I enjoyed it as much as I enjoyed getting to know you through your little piece-Kudos and thank you for writing it.

    Drop me a line if you are interested to chat further: crazie_gen83@yahoo.com. A new friend is always welcomed.


  25. I’ve been struggling with the idea to go butch for a while now, because I’ve been feeling like I’m not a “real dyke”, but after reading this, I’ve decided that just because I want to buy more flanel and quit eating meat and cut my hair shorter doesn’t mean that I have to stop wearing cute dresses and strapping on nice heels for a night out. I’m going to be me every day; one day that might mean baggy jeans and some plaid, another day that might mean tights and a purple dress. Thank you. So much.

    I’d really like to thank you.

  26. Can’t remember how I got here, but this was a thoroughly enjoyable read. Perhaps not identifying so much with the central issues myself, I still find it quite a fetching piece firstly, and also quite relevant for any one with any gender issue – a label that should fit most of us. Looking forward to delving further into this blog, cheers!

  27. I have to tell you the truth here, you have been gaslighted by your friend when she called you femme phobic, look up gaslighting and see what i mean. You had libirated yourself from the constraints of femininity, that is feminism in practice as your a female not a male, your friend was still stuck in the box and was too afraid to get the hell out of it so had to try and drag you back in. If you like being masculine and around masculine people, so be it.

    I think society has changed a real lot, and it holds femininity over masculinity now. Even streight men are dressing and acting more femininine, level of masculinity is now a marker of how much of a looser one is.

    Im like you in the reverse, i am more masculine but have tryed to be more femme in the past to gain more social status and to not appear gay. Im back out as masculine now, and it does bring some losses as people expect more from you in some areas for example if you present masculine your expected to be confident. If your feminine your seen as a btch if you are too confident. Also when i was femme i always felt hard compared to what i should be, now i feel softer then i could be, almost like i could get away with being a bit more tougther if i wanted to etc.

    I feel like i want to reform my masculinity into a more camp type, one that shifts away from the version of masculinity thats bad for women. I dont wish to dominate, only to be independant and free from gender.

    Ive also noticed that the people who knew me when i had long hair still treat me as they did (by that i mean no extra chips), but those that meet me knew treat me different (with plus and minuses etc).

    Already i have other people assuming what i will not like or think based on my percieved masculinity, like what colours they would not expect to see me in etc. This is why im gonna for a while move to a more camp masculinity, as i dont want to jump in to a box just as restricted as the one i left.

    Im starting to question masculinity in the way i question the female gender role. What if i was to spend my time feeling free by being masculine only to find out that masculinity is just another trap. Its just a trap with more benifits or different benifits.

    Ive gone from masculine to none masculine many times and do notice strange reactions. Like people have to re evaulate you as a person, some wont even except it (im talking women here). Men on the other hand tend to just think your a lesbian whos on the butch side, women notice all sorts of stuff that men dont.

    Im never going back to being feminine, not ever, but i am gonna make sure i stay out of the dyke masculinity box.

    Another point, maybe that friend who said your femme phobic likes you and is pissed she could not have you.

    Also as far as who i hold in higher regard, men appear to do better then women on many thinks society values, but in actual fact nature would value women more as more women are needed then men. Women have always done most of the work that is essential for the human race to survive. Nature sees males as more disposable and masculine behaviour is more of a risk. Nature made most women more feminine to preserve them for there children. Men also wage war, and do many things thats bad for everyone. But maybe they go in this direction because no one stops them, boys are allowed to do these things or even made to.

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