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Gender transition: the most dystopian project I’ve ever managed

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At the beginning of 2019, I came out publicly as agender and took on my gender transition in earnest. I’d known I was agender for a while before that. I’ve been conscious of my lack of gender since I was four years old. I just didn’t have the words for it, and figured that since gender was so important to everyone else, I must just have some loose gender wires that I needed to figure out how to...

How to use they/them pronouns (and why they matter)

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Personal pronouns are the parts of speech we use when we talk about someone in third person. Like in the sentence below: She‘s going camping with John, even though he’s bringing his brother with him. Personal pronouns aren’t a thing most people think much about, because they usually present no problems. But for a lot of gender-nonconforming people, we think about them a lot, because people...

What does it mean to be agender?

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Agender: of, relating to, or being a person who has an internal sense of being neither male nor female nor some combination of male and female : of, relating to, or being a person whose gender identity is genderless or neutral Merriam Webster I’m no gender expert. In fact, I don’t even have a gender. You’d be better off calling me a “no-gender” expert. Expert? Still not accurate. That...

I got top surgery

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You saw the title: I got top surgery. You may know it more formally as a double mastectomy; less formally as the teet yeet.* Getting this surgery was an accomplishment that tested me as a person more than any skill or achievement I’ve ever bragged about on a resumé (and I have a pretty sweet resumé). If I’m supposed to be proud of something as dumb as my typing speed, I can be proud of this. I...

Not all vulnerability is good vulnerability

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As both an artist and an openly trans nonbinary person, vulnerability is a big part of my everyday life. Living in a vulnerable way has a lot of drawbacks. So I’ve spent a lot of time thinking about whether the value really justifies the cost.  It’s too late for me to slink back into the closet, but I sure could be less vocal and expressive. Everything I share is an opportunity to receive...

All this gender is wearing me out

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I really don’t get the deal where society smears gender all over everything all the time. Yesterday I got “ma’am”ed, I got “gentlemen”ed, I got “sir”ed, and I got “she”-ed and “her”-ed more times than I can count. It’s not like I was doing anything related to gender when any of it happened. It wasn’t really more gender-flinging than usual. But I’m more tired than usual. No matter how...

The Bible on being trans & misuse of power

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Since I came out as agender, I haven’t talked much about my faith. It’s not because I’m ashamed that I’m going against my beliefs, which some assume. I am living in deep alignment with my beliefs. It’s because, in most contexts in which faith has come up, it’s essentially people demanding that I defend my existence (“lifestyle choices” as they might put it) against their impenetrable...

Don’t let toxic people tell your story

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Your story is an abstract representation of you in the world. It comes in many forms: reminiscences with friends, anecdotes shared about you when you’re not present, individual imaginations of what your life is like. Your story is the framework people build to understand you. It can be accurate, or completely off the wall. It can be flattering, or it can paint you as an awful person. Whether or...

When 12-year-old me tried to teach Bach a lesson

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Classical piano performance is bizarre. I was immersed in it as a kid, and got into a love-hate relationship with it. If my biased read was accurate, my teachers thought I was talented, but disrespectful. I sometimes overheard them chatting with my mom, thinking I was out of hearing range, about how irritating I had been in the most recent lesson. It always upset me. I never intended to be...

Who is your family?

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Family, family, family. What even is family? We can talk biology, but it doesn’t boil down to that, does it? People are adopted into families. People marry each other and become their own families. There’s chosen families. Families can come in so many different shapes and sizes. At its most basic, family is a group of people who genuinely care about each other. That’s the defining characteristic...

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