A Cis-Man’s guide to the LGTBQIA+

But not a straight man’s guide. I was planning on telling more family & friends about my sexuality after the countdown my Instagram poetry account is doing was finished. But I figured I go put this article out & come out to another audience at the same time. Since I won’t want to explain what exactly it means to be queer or any of the letters of LGTBQI+. And God knows some of you cis and straight people need a guide.

I’ll begin with a some words on myself: I am queer. This Q letter, to not be confused with qanon, means that I’m not quite sure what I am. I like women, but I love transwomen & transmen too. I’m unsure what this means for being attracted to cis-men, I have found some attractive but not to the point that I find trans-people & women attractive. I do not use a religious text to tell me what is moral or amoral when it comes to choosing who I love. To which I must tell everyone out there, that just because someone is queer does not mean I’ll find everyone attractive.

Nor does attraction equate itself to love. Gay men & gay women (lesbians) can be attracted to you but not love you. Any cis-person by now has probably already said “duh” in their head, if they’re smart that is. And I must make a small a small disclaimer on this: sex work, whether that is stripping or consensual sex for money or selling nude (or lewd) photos online, or camming, or being in pornographic films. Is work. What sex work is not: being in bondage for a sex trafficker. Someone more knowledgeable than me will be able to elaborate more on this than me, as I am not a sex worker or in the line of work of detaining sex traffickers. Despite my opinion that our society must do better in not criminalizing sex work, and focus on sex traffickers, regardless I must tell you that I am not any sort of criminal law expert on these things.

And thus we know that we must all do better.

On a general note I think it’s important to talk about what being LGTBQI+ actually is. Most people want to use “science” to refute claims of what being LGTBQI+ actually is. And I could do that, I could. I could tell you that the DSM 5 views sexuality on one spectrum, and gender identity on another spectrum. I could tell you that intersex people has always existed, and I would especially tell you to be polite & respectful to them should you ever see them. I could tell you that anyone who claims there’s only two genders is not only wrong, but wholly misinformed in how biology works. Only one of those chromosomes is a Y chrome you know. But I’m not gonna do that.

Instead we’re going to talk about what the cultural and some historical evidence shows on this spectrum of identity. Something that people cannot just throw away like other aspects of their identity. Something that is innate to their very souls, to the way they express love, to the way they are inside. You could no better tell someone to stop being gay than you could tell someone to stop being Black, Christian, to speak a certain language to their elders, or even to stop being proud of the country they identify with. You cannot tell people to stop being themselves, and if you hate someone for who they are. Then you are the one with the problem, not they.

I’ve touched some on the misconceptions of why even biology tells us there are more than two sexes. And here is another note you must make, for even the concept of sex and gender is jumbled up by people who are too afraid to learn. Sex is biology, and there aren’t just two. I’m not versed in all the scientific literature, I just took biology classes in college. The way the X & Y chromosomes batch up together can take on many forms: you could be XX, XY, X, XXX, XXY, so on and so forth. As I said, it’s one chromosome that gives the illusion of two sexes. So even this is a flawed perception handed down to us by those who just didn’t know better.

So the claim of sexes being only of two is wrong, it is logically only natural to say that genders are only two. And I could stop right here, but I won’t. Psychology is a science, and regardless of your view on it, it is. As such let’s unpack some of the stuff I said about gender being on a spectrum, or as some people call it gender fluidity. Gender is not about biology, and I too like the term gender fluidity much more than my other counterparts. Gender is expression. They’re clothes, they’re the things we love, the things that we choose to use, to play with, and they’re norms: cultural, workplace, & sub-cultures. These norms when forced upon someone, create unpleasant experiences on the person. Nightmarish things that can drive a person utterly mad, to commit things that no person should ever want to commit. If you do not agree with this, that’s fine, just know that cultures will shape around you. And you will be left behind in knowing the new norms.

But what about history? Yeah what about history. I’ll have to admit that I do not know much on history, boring subject about white men who would’ve spit in my face had they known me. But, history is nonetheless important. And I have been told that there’s historical evidence on gender fluidity. We don’t really need to get into the history of intersex people, because those people were either: unaware of knowing they were intersex, or they were already known to society and either celebrated, or ostracized for who they were. And lastly, because these people were either gender fluid, or they were made to conform to an identity. You see that is also another norm that we’ve become accustomed to: assigning genders at birth.

Assigning a gender at birth may not actually be violent, after all what better way to know the gender of newborn that won’t be invasive than to look at their genitalia. Boys are supposed to have one kind, and girls are supposed to have another kind. But remember, this too is a myth now. We now know of evidence of intersex people, thus to assign a gender at birth is something that will have to be corrected should a child start questioning their identity. And I mean identity & not sexuality. Because remember, sexuality and gender identity are two completely different spectrums.

When a child is young, they have a lot of questions. Ho boi do they have so many questions, and the more questions they have the more thirst of knowledge they have. We should nurture this hunger for knowledge, and never confine it. Because the only two rules parents should have in being good parents, love them & never abuse them. Never abuse them. Whether or not your cultural norms say it isn’t abuse, the cognitive dissonance you have when you verbally/physically/sexually abuse minors is never ok. I say the next sentence constantly in my life but it still bears reiterating: they’re a reason statutory rape laws exist, abusing any minor in any capacity is NEVER ok.

So some historical evidence I’ve heard in the past includes: indigenous cultures and the concept of the two spirit people, as well as many many people of importance and significance like Luka Avendano, Amelio Robles, Christine Jorgensen. And recent celebrities like Elliot Page. In cultures that are so vast and so wide, it would take another article just to speak on the historical evidence of it alone. Whether these people were intersex, trans, male, female, or anywhere in between. It doesn’t really matter anymore does it.

And lastly I speak on the last term you will need to be comfortable with, transgender. This term is not harmful, it is just another way someone else is trying to express themselves. It is a part of someone’s identity that is vital to them, and vital to our society. As I said before, you can deny their existence, but yet they exist. And should you continue to deny that they exist you will head further down into a hold of cognitive dissonance. A hole so vast and so deep that you result to violence in order to avoid it. And why would you ever want to do that to yourself? Why would you purposely give yourself this disease of cognitive dissonance? Why not take the cure, and the cure is this: trans people exist, they are of no harm to you or to our society, should you continue down this path you will be met by violence. And you wouldn’t want to come up against actual violence, do you?

And yes I mean all of this, our society will eventually learn to accept trans people for they are, people. That acceptance will look differently to others, it will be expressed differently, viewed differently, and felt differently. You can choose now to accept this simple truth or you can let society pass you by. Letting your bigoted views be forgotten & vilified by history, while the names of our LGTBQI+ friends and family will be remembered long after you are forgotten.

So what’s the choice bub: love or violence?

Edit: I’ll add this stuff later when I eventually rework this article. But some notable things to not do: ask what genitalia someone has (not your business), ask what their sexual identity is (not your business), ask about their PRIVATE sex life (not your business), ask what is their religious identity is (not your business), ask if they can have kids (not your business), ask a trans person if they’ve “had the surgery” (not your business), or ask about their sexual identity (again…not your business…unless you’re attracted to them & you’re trying to score. And if they say no just go away man). And you shouldn’t ask about anything personal, other than their pronouns (if you’re unsure). And NO, no one is “butchering the English language”, guess what is also fluid buddy?

Unlisted

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E. I. D. Esqueda

E. I. D. Esqueda

Writer/poet for hire and fighting game enthusiast. I’m a neurodivergent queer who is also a military veteran. I write about politics & culture sometimes.