I am genderfluid.
I've never felt either male or female, but rather felt both.
I identified as "mixed gender" or "multi gendered" but not intersex, since the 1980s. When adults asked if I was a boy or a girl I frequently said: "Both."
As a child I used to ask our bishop if I had two souls living inside of me. Of course he sent me to a psychiatrist, because, that's what adults do, when an 8 year old says: "I think God made a mistake and gave me 2 souls. I can feel them both inside me. One is a boy and one is a girl. Sometimes I want to play trucks with the boy and sometimes I want to dress up with the girl. My dad bought me a set of Tonka trucks. But my mom made me all these pink sequin pageant dresses and she says I'm not allowed to play with the trucks daddy gave me, so she took an axe to them and chopped them all up and bought me Barbie dolls instead. I don't see why I can't wear dresses and play with trucks too. Why can't I do both. Why can't I be both a girl and a boy."
I had a strange childhood. My dad kept buying me more trucks, my mom kept smashing them up and sewing VERY ADULT "prom style" pageant dresses and making me wear them 24 hours a day all day long, every day, all year long. I loved wearing the dresses, but it made me sad every time she'd pull out the axe and chop up the Tonka trucks. I started hiding the trucks in my grandmother's house. And as a result I still have a few of them today, 40 years later.
I also still wear sequined silk gowns every day as my daily wear. Never stopped even as an adult.
I always used female pronouns.
There was never a point when I thought of the possibility of "other" pronouns.
I had not heard of the "alternate" pronouns like xe, ze, eh, ey, and the rest, until 2016 - just 1 year ago. I heard of them, when a curious, well meaning binary-cis person came out and asked me: "Why don't you use non-binary pronouns."
My first response was: "What does non-binary mean?"
She went on to say: "Well, I'm a cis-female and..."
I interrupted her before she finished to ask:
"What's a cis-female?"
I am gender fluid and quasi-on again/off again transgender. I have been since 1975. And yet, until I meet a social justice warrior in 2016, I had never heard to terms: binary, non-binary, cis, ze, xe, ey, or eh before. Was completely unaware of the existence of such words.
Upon discovering the existence of these weird new pronouns I began asking my trans friends, both online and offline, if any of them used them, and nearly every one of them (about 700 people) stated that either they had never heard of them before or if they had heard of them, they found them to be incredibly offensive.
While I have yet to find a trans person who uses xe, ze, eh, ey, type pronouns, ironically the ONLY people I've been able to find who DOES use these strange alien sounding pronouns are always either non-trans social justice warriors or non-trans authors.
In both cases they speak FOR trans people, without bothering to find out if what they are saying on our behalf actually even represents us.
Xe, ze, eh, ey, iar, etc type pronouns are NOT used by us actual, real live trans people, and are ONLY used by social justice warriors who have their heads stuffed so far up their asses they they have no clue how offensive they are being to us.
By using the very alien sounding xe, ze, eh, ey, iar, etc type pronouns, you are in fact dehumanizing us and treating us as though we are alien beings who are not human.
In trying to trace the reason why so many non-trans authors are recently using these very alien, dehumanizing pronouns for their trans characters, I discovered that the problem is the know-nothing social justice warriors who are screaming their asses off to get in the news and are vastly misrepresenting the trans community.
They claim to speak for us, but all they are REALLY seeking is to get in the spotlight, so they say whatever they think the news media will swallow, without any thought to the consequences of their actions.
Were they ACTUALLY social justice warriors as they called themselves, they would do their research and put the PEOPLE first. But that is not what they are doing.
We who actually are trans, are NOT in the spotlight seeking to be on the news. We are NOT trying to be different. We did NOT actively wake up one day and think:
"Huh, I want to be female." We were born this way. We knew we did not fit the male/female norm as toddlers. We didn't suddenly decide to become something else.
The big name celebrities who get in the news and do the whole: "Look at me, I'm female now!" They DO NOT represent us as a whole and most of us look at them as just being show offs, becoming a female only to try to keep on top of some trend they think they need to be on top of.
Most REAL WORLD, every day trans and genderfluid people, are no different from anyone else. We live our lives, we have families, we go to school, go to work, and...we ourselves don't think about our gender UNTIL some stranger brings it up.
We aren't out there like the big name celebrities are doing, running around going "Look at me! I'm a gender fluid!" It's not something we even talk about.
I think people who are not trans, put way too much thought into what our lives are like.
I also think the recent rise of lots of teens boldly proclaiming their trans-ness on Tumblr is more about them just seeking attention and jumping on the "I want to be different" bandwagon.
It is my belief that the bulk of the kids, will stop identifying as trans once the "I need to be different" fad wears off.
That is not to say that ALL of them are doing this, mind you. Certainly many are in fact trans and or genderfluid. But in my experience the people who are proclaiming their transness the loudest on social media, are often the ones who don't know what trans evenis. Many of them call themselves transsexual, and yet when you ask them:
"How long ago was your sex change surgery?"
They become horrified and answer with:
"Sex change! Who said anything about sex change! I'm not doing that!"
The word transexual MEANS a person who has undergone a sex change surgery. The word trassexual is NOT interchangable with the word transgender.
They have two very DIFFERENT meanings. Transexual individuals make up fewer then 3% of the transgender community.
If you are too stupid to even know the meaning of the word transsexual, than you have no business calling yourself trans. Their inability to even get the words correct when describing themselves, that alone speaks volumes for how NOT trans they actually are.
And this falls back into the words cis and binary...
Those are words that were created by non-trans people as a way to put labels on people, as a way to dehumanize people different from themselves.
In proudly saying: "I'm a ci-girl!" It's no different from a Ku Klux Klan member saying: "I'm white!"
Calling yourself cis or binary, that's just you trying to say you are better, because you fit a profile. It's very offensive. It just one more way you people use to treat us not Human and try to separate us from society.
It's you ostracizing us and not allowing us to be or feel welcomed.
So, no, we trans and genderfluid, do NOT like that authors and social justice warriors are trying to single us out by inventing new words to describe us.
We are people, human, just like you. Why can't you accept that?
A common question from readers of the Quaraun series is to ask why Quaraun uses male pronouns.
The answer is quite simple: Quaraun is a genderfluid transvestite, NOT a transexual. Quaraun is what is known as an androgynous genderfluid person.
Like all genderfluid people he is NOT trying to CHANGE from one gender to the other, but like all genderfluid people, most strangers he meets are unable to tell by looking at him if he is male or female.
Though male, Quaraun looks incredibly female. His body never developing any male masculinity is a result of an injury he received as a teenager. Quaraun has what is known as a sub-penial incision injury. His penis is badly scarred and severely damaged to the point that he is nearly incapable of having sexual intercourse. Multiple scars radiate around his groin, hip, and genitals. This was a result of his being stabbed many times by bullies.
While he bares the outward scars of this attack, Quaraun also suffered the long term side effect of having his reproductive organs damaged in this manner - meaning his body produces almost no testosterone, resulting in his small bone structure, his slim muscular structure, and his curvy features that result from fat deposits, overall leading to his looking very female.
In spite of his being able to pass for a female, Quaraun is genetically/biologically male and continues to use male pronouns for himself, as he is in fact NOT trying to be a female, and has no control over the fact that he looks like a female.
The confusion readers seem to have, appears to come from the fact that the word transvestite starts with "trans" and as the average American has no clue how to use a dictionary or use the English language, they are quick to jump to the false conclusion that any word starting with "trans" somehow always means transsexual.
A transsexual is a person who is actively attempting to change their gender.
A transvestite is a person who believes cloths have no gender.
Female transvestites are far more common then male transvestites.
ALL women who wear pants are transvestites.
90% of the female population of America are transvestites.
EVERY female in America who wears blue jeans is a transvestite.
Has it sunk into your head yet, the differance between the word transvestite and transexual and transgender?
Women who run around Maine, WHILE WEARING BLUE JEANS and scream "transvestite freak" only prove themselves brainless idiots for being unaware that they themselves are transvestites.
If you are gonna speak the English language, it might do you well to open a dictionary once in a while and actually learn the meanings of words.
Do keep in mind that transvestites are NOT accepted by the transgender community as being transgender and are often, beaten up and or murdered by very hot tempered and exeesivly violent transexuals. You will be hard pressed to find a transexual who does not vehement hate transvestites and seek all transvestites to be dead.
This then leads to other reader questions of, if he's not trying to pass himself off as a female, why then does he wear dresses.
The novel BoomFuzzy takes place in the year 938.
Pants had not yet been invented.
So, there's THAT.
Secondly, the reason is clearly stated in the novels...
Quaraun is the youngest child, of a very large family. It never says the exact number of siblings he has, as the story is told from his perspective and he, himself did not know how many siblings he had. What is does say is this:
"Quaraun was the youngest child of the king's younger brother. The only son, with multiple dozen older sisters. As a toddler he looked up to his sisters and did everything they did, including wearing their cloths. This action was overlooked by the adults as cute childish behaviour. The Elves only began to worry, when as an adult, Quaraun continued to dress no different from his sister's, seemingly unaware of the fact that boys were supposed to do their hair differently from girls and wear clothes different than girls. Upon his refusal to stop dressing like his sisters, Quaraun's father did the unthinkable and cut Quaraun's long waist length hair, then burned all of his dresses. Confused as to why he was being singled out, Quaraun was unable to understand why he alone, and none of his sisters, was the target of their father's wrath."
Quaraun's mother dies when he is just 3 years old, after which he is largely ignored by his father and instead raised by his older sisters, who treat him as though he was another sister. He is never treated like a boy, never made aware of the fact that he even is a boy, and, is confused by the way other Elves react to him, when as an adult he continues to dress and act like a girl.
Raise a child in the way they should go and when they are old they shall not fall from it.
Quaraun was raised as and treated like a girl for his entire childhood (75 years - by Elf life spans) and being part of the royal family he is never allowed out in public during his childhood, so he never interacts with other male children, and is raised oblivious to the fact that he was being treated vastly differently then how most boys were treated.
Thus we have a male Elf who dresses and acts female as an adult, but is not in fact trying to be female and is largely unaware of the fact that he is acting out of the ordinary.
Since you used the word "genderqueer" I feel I need to comment on this as well.
In my local region "queer" (and therefore also "genderqueer") is seen as a hate slur against gay men, the equivalent of the n-word. Like fag, faggot, tranny, and bugger, queer is a word ONLY used by haters and NEVER used in the LGBTQA+ community.
This is partly due to the fact that the Ku Klux Klan is heavily active in this area, and house bombs, beheaded pets, and dead/beheaded gay men hanging in flag poles with the word queer painted across their naked body, is very big problem here in Maine.
Since 2014 the KKK has kidnapped, beheaded and returned the heads of 500 cats and dogs belonging to 140 LGBTQA+ families just in my town alone (Old Orchard Beach).
4 people have been beheaded in the neighbouring town of Saco since 2015.
My cousin who lived next door to me was beheaded in 2013.
My house was blown up by a bomb in 2006.
2 of my cats had their heads nailed to my front door in 2015.
The FBI is here trying to identify these terrorists, but when dealing with men hiding behind white hoods, it's difficult to identify them.
When I say the KKK's anti-gay hate crimes are an out of control problem in Maine - I mean exactly what I say. And so when I tell you... DO NOT under ANY circumstances use the word QUEER or GENDERQUEER to describe us, I mean that too.
I know in recent years there is a trend in big cities for younger generations to be "neutralizing" or "making friendly" the word queer... but I would challenge them to walk down the streets of Maine wearing their "I'm a proud queer" t-shirts and see how long they can keep their head attached to their body. Marching around wearing shirts saying "Queer and proud" may be fine and dandy in a gay-friendly community, but for those of us who live in areas where gay hatred is bad and getting worse, we know the true meaning of the word queer and the damage the younger generation is doing by trying to "reclaim" that horribly offensive word.
If you only plan to sell your book to big city young folks who've never lived with real, actual, hard core discrimination, then using the word "queer" may not be that much of an issue... but no small down LGBTQA+ person who has to live with the word "queer" graffitied on their house, or has been hung in a tree naked with "queer" painted across their body, is going to see your book as anything other than a slight against them. Maine's "Transgender Murders" are out of control and getting worse every year, yet most of the world turns a blind eye to the slaughter and terrorism we LGBTQA+ citizens have to face every day in Maine.
Remember, just because a few big cities, celebrities, and out spoken social justice warriors have embraced the word "queer" has "friendly" doesn't mean the bulk of the LGBTQA+ community agrees them. And no one who's ever come face to face with the KKK is going to do anything but cringe every time they see or hear the word queer.