I love the word queer, on many levels. From the fact that it encompasses more than just my sexuality, into my gender, and certain aspects of politics and community, to that it means odd. I’m more than a little odd, and I’m more than a little queer. I say queer, and people ask me what I mean.
Except in so many instances I dislike the word queer. It’s incredibly frustrating that those not familiar with queer communities don’t ask. It’s unfamiliar, confusing, and not helpful in connecting with different groups of people. More than that, I have huge issues with many parts of various queer communities. They can be self-isolating, unrealistic, judgemental, and occasionally vicious. That is true of most communities at one point or another. But as I’ve heard from strangers and friends recently, so often it is those in the queer (or kink, or other such) community that judges and turn in on each other. No one has come up with a way to keep out the assholes and douchebag.
Carol Queen used a term that I am coming to really enjoy. “Beyond Bisexual.” I don’t identify as bisexual, because I am interested in so many more people than just two of the variety of sexes or genders out there. Except, that is a word that a lot of people understand. There is a lot of meaning there, of biphobia from within straight and GL communities alike. Hell, even I’ve gotten the “so you’re greedy” comments many bisexuals get, and that was without even mentioning being poly.
I’m not exempt from the biphobia found within queer communities. In high school, I was very angry at this one group of girls who would get drunk and make out with other girls and call themselves bi. I dealt with so much shit. I was the school dyke, and anyone could take one look at me and tell. I got asked “are you a boy or a girl” walking down the halls. They got attention, positive attention. They got boyfriends from those makeouts. It pissed me off. I had gone through confusion, harassment, etc., and they got none of it… and they weren’t “really” even bi! Yeah. I judged. I was one of those policing douchebags. I also grew up and got over myself. A lot about the situation in high school was fucked up, but getting angry because I thought of them as “supposedly bi” only contributed.
Once out of that situation, I chilled a lot. Many friends of mine in college did similar things, making out with their female friends while drunk… while having boyfriends. I didn’t get angry, hell I probably encouraged. A good number of them don’t identify as straight either. I didn’t even think about the connection until recently, at the 5 College Queer Sexuality and Gender Conference during the wonderful keynote by Michelle Tea. She brought up the drunken make-outs, how so many queers police those who partake in them, and that she herself started out that way. Between that, and something I do not recall that my friend next to me said, I started thinking about my role of policing queer identities in high school.
I’ve been on multiple sides of biphobia. I don’t want to discount it, but I also don’t want to discount my much broader sexuality, or risk obfuscating my own non-binary, non-spectrum, and very fluid gender identity. Beyond bisexual takes a word with a history, uses it as a launch pad, so I can go soaring towards the stars. Mainstream people can understand it enough to ask “what?” because it is grounded in a term they understand (whether or not they believe it exists.) Moreover, it’s a term that is specifically sexuality focused. I can use it, expand on it, without having to deal with my explaining my gender. Which is something that degenerates into fluid dynamics and 4 dimensional images of the universe.
Beyond is part of the title of this blog for a reason. It is an expansive word. Beyond bisexual can mean anything from attraction to more than two sexes/genders to going beyond attraction based on gender and into sexualities based more around specific kinks, personalities, etc.
One of the great things I learned about the word (prefix really) trans is that it doesn’t just mean across or on the opposite side… it means beyond. Trans lunar means beyond the orbit of the moon around the earth. Transcendent, transhumanism…
Yes, I’m a word nerd.
This blog contains sexually explicit material, so please be of legal reading age for your location. Any questions, concerns, or things you don't want to leave in a comment, feel free to email me at xmechbeyond AT gmail.com
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