ForumTouchy Subjects ► What is your take on the Gender Spectrum?
For me personally, it's a joke. Most of the "Genders" on this Spectrum do not make sense. Some genders are multiple genders combined, others are genders relating to beliefs or ethnicity and some are related to animals which goes against the orginal definition of genders.



If anyone thinks that they can change my mind, go ahead.
  
I am once again here to say: gender is stupid and shouldn't exist. Much of the stuff I see about this still buys into, and implicitly endorses, the existence of 'masculine' and 'feminine' traits. Stop it.
  
I am once again here to say: gender is stupid and shouldn't exist. Much of the stuff I see about this still buys into, and implicitly endorses, the existence of 'masculine' and 'feminine' traits. Stop it.


Do you think we should be referred to by our biological sexes then?
  
Gendered pronouns shouldn't exist. Everybody should be Mx. and singular 'they', or some other non-gendered things. Physical sex is a) not that clear because there are a lot more options than strictly "male" and "female" and b) a ridiculous way to delineate names.
  
I'm good with folks being whatever folks feel they are. I'll call you by whatever you prefer.
  
I agree with Chet. It should be equally acceptable to go by anything you like. It doesn’t really matter, and we should just let people be what they want to be.

unrelated, but this happens to be my 420th post.
  
I'm around 7,300ish
  
But there is plenty enough a difference between male and female.

For example, nvm.
  
I've had this 'discussion' too many times.
1) Sex is not binary in the first place. There are plenty of intersex conditions (there are more intersex people than redheads) and even among people with standard phenotypes there is a lot of variance.
2) Gender is a social construct, the traits we associate with the biological sexes are fluid and sometimes completely detached from any physical trends. They are not objective or absolute. What it meant to be a man in 1500s Italy is different than in modern day Italy or 1500s Thailand or modern Thailand.
3) Can I just please exist without strangers feeling the need to pass judgement on my existence? I'm doing what makes me happy (or at least what doesn't make me incredibly unhappy) and I don't see how it affects you or why it even needs to be an issue. How does a strict gender binary serve to make people's lives better? How does my deviation from that binary affect anyone else's experiences with it, since gender is a personal thing?
  
Yeah. I also think that it doesn't really affect my life in any way if someone wants to be called something other than what I assumed they wanted to be called.

There are people who make the jokes about being an "attack helicopter" or whatever to make fun on people who don't use binary pronouns, but like fine if you ask to be called an attack helicopter the hell do I care? It literally does not affect me in any way shape or form so do and be whoever you want.
  
Gender sucks and I'd like to opt out. Hashtag cancel gender. Gender is weird and constricting and I don't like it much at all, hence going on over to non-binary. There's way too much tied up onto gender and I dislike the vast majority of it. It doesn't describe me at all. So, cancel gender.

Unless you really like your gender, of course, then you can keep it, because I don't want to harsh your squee or anything.
  
Most of the ‘Genders’ on this Spectrum do not make sense. Some genders are multiple genders combined...


I want to draw attention to this. It kind of proves a point for people arguing that there are more than two, or no genders. If people are uncomfortable enough with the norms for their gender that they will identify as a new one that is “multiple genders combined”, then it shows how horrible and restricting it is only having two genders.

I’ll also just reiterate the notion I’m getting from the rest of the thread: Let people be themselves, it hardly affects you anyway.
  
Coldfrost said:
How does a strict gender binary serve to make people's lives better?

It doesn't, at all, for anybody. There is absolutely no benefit to it. Nor is there a benefit to gender at all.
  
Let people be themselves, it hardly affects you anyway.

The magic words for tolerance.
  
I have some... Complicated thoughts on this. Gender's a social construct, it varies from culture to culture and time period to time period. Anyone who thinks gender is immutable and unchangeable is obviously an idiot, but I think it's equally pig-headed to pretend we should all be in beige jumpsuits and refuse to acknowledge gender entirely.

Arguably, gender in the west has outlived its usefulness (and it did have a usefulness in the past). Gender roles are diverse across cultures because of their differing utility in different regions, timeperiods and economic systems. I think a lot of my hesitation to call it stupid stems from the incredibly touchy subject of Indigenous cultures with firm gender roles that conflict with western expectations of equality.

Is it cultural erasure to insist minority cultures can't enforce gender roles? Are indigenous peoples sexist assholes? Or maybe, just maybe, cultural constructs are more important than their immediate objective utility.
  
I just accept that there's an indefinite number of genders now. No point getting angry about it. When does it affect you. The only time it affects me is that there's an extra tick-box on forms now. If gender is a self-described, self-reported feeling, then it's anything people say it is. It doesn't bother me if there's 13 or 19 or 26 or 42 genders. I still think the vast majority of humans fall clearly into two sexes. But we're not discussing sex. The two are conflated by all sides of the argument, even well-meaning people.

I suppose it would be fair to say I'm more sympathetic to transgender people than I am to non-binary people. I remember a gender debate that did the rounds online some years back where a person who was clearly both female and feminine-presenting insisted she was non-binary. Well what does that mean then. It does get to the point where there is no concrete, objective criteria, it's just whatever people say. So there's almost no point asking what it means. From my point of view, it takes up more energy scrutinising it when I could just go along with it.

In real-life I have never had a pronoun issue. I have never knowingly met a transgender or a non-binary person. If I did, then they must've passed well, so it wasn't an issue. If I met someone who was obviously say a trans woman, I'd call them she. I accept that these pronouns now refer to presentation rather than biology. If I ever met someone who preferred to be called "they", I'd probably try to accommodate, but it's never happened. If they wanted silly role-playing pronouns like Xir I probably wouldn't, but I think those people are a fringe of a fringe.

I don't think I'll go down the route of switching the whole language to non-binary to give favouritism to an infinitesimal minority who has a problem with it. The needs of the many outweigh the needs of the few. If I start addressing everyone as non-binary, then what happens when I start offending binary people for whom binaryness is an important part of their identity.

I suppose the terms AMAB / AFAB annoy me. Because sex is an inherent thing. 99.9% of babies are unambiguously male or female. Why say "Assigned male at birth", why not say "Was male at birth". It makes it sound like the hospital made a mistake or something. You were male at birth. You've since transitioned. That's cool, I accept your gender transition and/or sex change. But the hospital didn't make a mistake, you really were that sex.

Just be nice to people and mean well. Most LGBTQ people won't bite your head off for asking questions if you're not being malicious. Nor will most LGBTQ people expect you to bend over backwards to cater to them. Don't get angry about it, it's not a conspiracy. If someone's wearing a dress and presenting as a woman even though they're biologically male, address them as a woman. It will make their life, and your life, easier. And isn't that more important?
  
Millpond said:
I suppose it would be fair to say I'm more sympathetic to transgender people than I am to non-binary people.
Nonbinary people are trams, by the definition of being a different gender than they were assigned at birth.
Millpond said:
...a person who was clearly both female and feminine-presenting insisted she was non-binary.
Maybe they hadn't begun transitioning. Maybe they weren't in a supportive environment and had to present in a certain way. Maybe they shouldn't have to prove their gender to you. You're kind of implying here that if a nonbinary person doesn't present androgynous then they're not really nonbinary. It's really not your place to make that judgement.
Millpond said:
From my point of view, it takes up more energy scrutinising it when I could just go along with it.
Except when you didn't literally earlier in the paragraph.
Millpond said:
If I ever met someone who preferred to be called "they", I'd probably try to accommodate, but it's never happened.
A lot of people 'try' to accommodate and don't try at all. It makes interacting with those people difficult for me. It feels very patronizing, to be told I'm respected and then having no effort put in to actually respect me.
Millpond said:
I suppose the terms AMAB / AFAB annoy me. Because sex is an inherent thing. 99.9% of babies are unambiguously male or female.
Well, depending on how you feel on a couple of genetic conditions, it's as low as 98.3%.
Millpond said:
Why say "Assigned male at birth", why not say "Was male at birth". It makes it sound like the hospital made a mistake or something.
The chromosomal sex isn't really what they're talking about. It gets all complicated with the gender/sex conflation. You can't say the doctors assigned someone to be a boy at birth because they don't do that, but by writing 'male' on the birth certificate they basically do the same thing. In that sense, they can definitely be wrong.
The issue also is because boy/girl sounds too childish to call a grown person but nobody is going to call a baby a man. There's other terms people use like 'socialized as a man' that might be more accurate but they're not as catchy or easy to use as the acronym.
And it can very much feel like an assignment or a designation placed upon you at birth. Solutions like 'biological sex' and yours feel like I was something at birth and then changed or made a choice to be something else now, when I've always been who I am.

I really, really don't want to invoke the stereotype of the radical progressive who will jump down the throats of anyone who says what I perceive to be offensive. I'm not trying to be argumentative, honestly what you've said here is nicer than what I'm likely to get in real life. I'm just really tired of having this conversation. Even when people say they support non-conforming individuals they very often don't, and when people weigh in like this it's such a backhanded compliment.

I'd just like to exist without other people feeling the need to judge whether I'm deserved the dignity of being referred to how I want. I want to be able to dress how I want to dress without worrying about people deciding I'm not androgynous enough. I'm tired of having to be an advocate and have a 'friendly' debate about the gender binary every time it comes up or I come out, but if I don't then my side of the story simply won't be heard.
  
Coldfrost said:
Nonbinary people are trams, by the definition of being a different gender than they were assigned at birth.
I thought non-binary people weren't a gender at all.
Coldfrost said:
Maybe they shouldn't have to prove their gender to you.
If they're asking people to recognise or do something different to accommodate their gender, or their lack of gender, then they probably do. If they DGAF, then they don't. I'm not suggesting anyone needs to "prove" it per se. I'm saying I don't understand it. And I'm not saying that they should necessarily care that I don't understand it, either. But if they're insisting on some sort of feedback, then they do care. Ultimately this is a thread where we were asked our thoughts.
Coldfrost said:
You're kind of implying here that if a nonbinary person doesn't present androgynous then they're not really nonbinary. It's really not your place to make that judgement.
That is precisely what I'm saying. I would've thought non-binary meant androgynous. If someone is presenting as feminine or masculine but they are non-binary, what does non-binary mean. If it's not our place to judge it, then are you basically saying it's just a matter of politeness that we should call people whatever they ask to be called without question? In other words, is being non-binary anything more than a preference for gender-neutral pronouns?
Coldfrost said:
Except when you didn't literally earlier in the paragraph.
Well, it'd be pretty boring if everyone just agreed. When I say go along with it, I mean in a real social situation I wouldn't get in someone's face about it, it wouldn't be worth it. I go along with it for binary trans people, I go along with it less for non-binary people. If I'm being specifically asked like in this thread, then that's the right time and place to not go along with it. I suppose the issue is, is it enough that people use the words you prefer, or do you want them to understand in their own heads as well.
Coldfrost said:
A lot of people 'try' to accommodate and don't try at all. It makes interacting with those people difficult for me. It feels very patronizing, to be told I'm respected and then having no effort put in to actually respect me.
I wouldn't be patronising enough to tell you you were respected. But in a social or work situation I'd call you whatever you presented as, then if HR had a meeting and said you prefer "they", I'd probably remember because it's something that's never happened.
Coldfrost said:
I really, really don't want to invoke the stereotype of the radical progressive who will jump down the throats of anyone who says what I perceive to be offensive. I'm not trying to be argumentative, honestly what you've said here is nicer than what I'm likely to get in real life. I'm just really tired of having this conversation. Even when people say they support non-conforming individuals they very often don't, and when people weigh in like this it's such a backhanded compliment.
I'm not trying to compliment or insult, just tell it like it is for probably a lot of binary people that aren't trying to be malicious and aren't worried about seeing a trans person in a toilet, but also aren't accepting that control of language has been handed over to trans / non-binary people. Words sometimes change their meaning, but they also sometimes don't change their meaning. And I suppose the confusion and contention comes in when someone goes from asserting a preference to a fact.

For example, this is the debate I was referring to earlier. The title is biased (though probably accurate, but it's biased to make that the title), however the clip is straight off the TV. The non-binary person asserts "I am non-binary, which means I'm neither male nor female". The cis woman argues the non-binary person is in fact one of those. Now if the non-binary person had said "I am non-binary, which means that even though I'm female and feminine, I prefer not to be addressed with feminine pronouns", then that's something that can't be disputed.
  
Nonbinary does not mean androgynous. Nonbinary is a fairly broad, umbrella term means that means someone does not fit neatly into the gender binary. There can be a variety of reasons for that, many of which may be quite personal to someone and not be visible at all at a glance.

How someone dresses or presents themselves has nothing to do with whether or not they are nonbinary. I am personally feminine presenting and nonbinary. I have never felt that "womanhood" described me. However, I'm comfortable with my body and I like the way that femme presentation flatters it. But I would be equally comfortable with my body if it were different or if I had been assigned male at birth instead. Further, most of what womanhood has been shown to mean to me in a social sense are all things that I reject, quite vehemently.

I've never had an internal sense of "gender," but I do prefer nonbinary over agender because I feel that nonbinary leaves more space for me to think about an acknowledge the way I was raised and socialized with the expectations of womanhood laid upon me, as well as the gendered violence I've experienced. There is a great deal of baggage with womanhood, especially when you start getting into how it relates to sex, motherhood, etc. This is a good Twitter thread that at least partially describes why this makes me uncomfortable, and may be a good place to start.

I strongly encourage you to do your own research on what nonbinary means, because it is clear you lack understanding if you think it is simply being "androgynous." I am not androgynous at all, nor do I aspire to be, and yet I also feel that "woman" is a label that does not fit me at all nor do I identify with it.
  
Millpond said:
From my point of view, it takes up more energy scrutinising it when I could just go along with it.

Millpond said:
If they wanted silly role-playing pronouns like Xir I probably wouldn't, but I think those people are a fringe of a fringe.

Why wouldn't you? It is very easy to just use a different word, particularly when the alternative is to hurt a real person. Takes much less energy.
Millpond said:
I suppose the terms AMAB / AFAB annoy me. Because sex is an inherent thing. 99.9% of babies are unambiguously male or female. Why say "Assigned male at birth", why not say "Was male at birth". It makes it sound like the hospital made a mistake or something. You were male at birth. You've since transitioned. That's cool, I accept your gender transition and/or sex change. But the hospital didn't make a mistake, you really were that sex.

Why does the language people use to describe themselves matter so much to you?
Millpond said:
Just be nice to people and mean well.

Millpond said:
It will make their life, and your life, easier. And isn't that more important?

Part of 'being nice' involves treating people how they would like to be treated. You seem to be willing to do this for things you find tolerable, but not for things you do not (such as neo-pronouns).
  
Nonbinary is a very big umbrella indeed. It encompasses everything from identities like Agender, who feel they have no gender at all, to people who don't care, to people who might call themselves Bigender, feeling happy being referred to as either gender, people who identify strongly with a third gender, people who feel like a boy or a girl but only rarely or only a very little bit. Basically any relationship with gender that does not confirm to the idea that man/woman are mutually exclusive and collectively exhaustive. It's a catch-all term, not another hard third option.

Millpond said:
If it's not our place to judge it, then are you basically saying it's just a matter of politeness that we should call people whatever they ask to be called without question?
Yes. You don't get to call binary trans people however you want because you don't think they present or pass well enough. You don't get to say you don't think someone's really nonbinary because their expression doesn't line up with what your perception of their gender should be. You shouldn't need to understand and fully empathize with someone in order to grant them the basic dignity of correct pronoun usage.
  
Grayseff said:
Arguably, gender in the west has outlived its usefulness (and it did have a usefulness in the past). Gender roles are diverse across cultures because of their differing utility in different regions, timeperiods and economic systems. I think a lot of my hesitation to call it stupid stems from the incredibly touchy subject of Indigenous cultures with firm gender roles that conflict with western expectations of equality.

Is it cultural erasure to insist minority cultures can't enforce gender roles? Are indigenous peoples sexist assholes? Or maybe, just maybe, cultural constructs are more important than their immediate objective utility.
I would like to call attention to this post because 1) I don't really have the capacity to respond to it in any meaningful way for reasons I can't exactly explain and 2) this is much more interesting than the "These pronouns are kinda weird" - "No they're not also call people what they want to be called" and the "What's nonbinary mean?" conversations that I've seen people have a million times over.
  
Some genders are multiple genders combined, others are genders relating to beliefs or ethnicity and some are related to animals which goes against the orginal definition of genders.

Please give an example as I’m too lazy to do a browser search.
  
Here and Here

Some people might say that the wiki is unreliable, but the pages are regularly checked and fixed
  
Millpond said:
a person who was clearly both female and feminine-presenting insisted she was non-binary.

they probably were. the way the person presented themselves doesn't necessarily indicate their gender, and although it seems strange, as it was strange to me at first, non-binary people usually don't aim for androgyny. i would label myself non-binary because i don't feel comfortable alligning with either male or female, but if i could, i would usually go for a masc look. the way non-binary people express themselves may be androgynous, or non-adrogynous, depending on how they feel most comfortable.

but i get that it doesn't make much sense on a surface level lol. idk how to properly explain it anyways

Millpond said:
If they wanted silly role-playing pronouns like Xir I probably wouldn't, but I think those people are a fringe of a fringe.

lol this is another thing that i find really interesting. in this article and this article you can see that neopronouns have existed for a while, and there is historical backing to the usage of them. but you're right when you say that people hardly use them. outside of the internet, i don't know if i've ever interacted with someone who has neopronouns, so it's not a huge deal.
  
Forum > Touchy Subjects > What is your take on the Gender Spectrum?