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December 3, 2008

For a couple of years now something has been revealed by life gradually chipping away at it, and I have reached a strange (for me) conclusion.

I might be bi? Am I bi? Shouldn’t I know? Does the fact that I don’t know mean I’m not? What?

Before I finally admitted I was a dominant sadist, I struggled for a while wondering if I was lesbian because I finally admitted how hard it was for me to be sexually attracted to men in real life. Turns out I was looking at the wrong kind of men. Then, once I found the kind of men I was sexually attracted to, and oh-so-powerfully attracted to, I thought that must negate any homosexual feelings I had felt, like they were just the products of not being able to find the right kind of men.

But lately sometimes there’ll be femsub porn (because God forbid there ever be mansub porn), and I’ll kind of think, ‘Huh…’ And then sometimes I’ll think, ‘You know, once I have my quota of masculinity, bring on the femsub. I can do that.’ And then there’s the fact that I’ve had plenty of vanilla and light kinky fantasies about intersex people and trans people of many varieties. And then there was one very orgasmic dream where I was fucking a woman in the ass with a strap-on. That was a clue.

There is also the fact that if I were suddenly thrown into the world of Octavia E. Butler‘s Xenogenesis trilogy, I would say, “Bring on the tentacled children.”

I’ve never really fantasized about beating up women, only men. Sometimes it happened incidentally, but it wasn’t what made me hot. I’ve always admired women’s asses. And waists. And backs. And recently their tits. But I figured that was just because women have such beautiful variety in bodies (I am the Queen of Denial). And then I always thought, “Well, breasts are nice, but I don’t think I’d be sexually aroused by another woman’s cunt, so I’m obviously not bi.” (You can also insert a few different phrases and arrive at, “Well, tying men up is nice, but I don’t think I’d be sexually aroused by vinyl dresses and high-heeled boots, so I’m obviously not a dominatrix.”) And now I’m like, “Huh. Man. A cunt is… a whole ‘nother orifice. Think of the things you can do with that.” I have not arrived to similar conclusions about suicidal sandals and PVC uniforms.

These past four months or so have been so weird for me, because so many things I thought I knew have been slipping away, skins that have dried up and no longer fit. My straightness, my definitely-not-getting-wet-imagining-men-screaming-in-agony-ness, my sexual structures, my sexual attitudes. It’s all sloughing away.

Trying to figure out if I’m bi, or whatever the hell I am, is very different from admitting that I was a dominant sadist. That was a “I’m not crazy it all makes sense now!” deal. Wondering if I’m bi is a “Well I kind of like– then there was that one time– but then I don’t– and there was that one dream– but does that mean…” It’s like the enormity of repressing my sadism and my dominance squashed anything else so that nothing else could even hint at existing, and now that I’ve let it free, all without my noticing a little plant has grown out around the side.

I always did like multitools.

I always did like multitools.

So, I’ve never done anything sexual with a woman (other than stare inappropriately), but I think I’d like to. I don’t know that I’d actively seek out intersex or trans partners, but if someone I like is, I would definitely go for it. Although men with cunts are really fucking hot. So that’s more than bi I guess. But I don’t know that it’s pansexual either, because I’m sure there are sexes and genders out there that I have no idea exist, and I might not be sexually attracted to them. I kind of like “omnisexual” because it’s like “omnivore” and I’m definitely one of those, like raccoons, but I’m not sure it’s correct either. So I could be polysexual, which sounds more accurate, and like “polyamorous,” but also doesn’t sound nearly as cool.

And then there’s “queer.” Which I don’t know what that means any more. I used to think it was the old-fashioned kind of British way of saying homosexual, for either binary gender. But now I see it used sometimes as something distinct from being gay (which for some reason when it’s a noun refers to homosexual men, and when it’s an adjective refers to both homosexual men and women) and lesbian, and then sometimes it still means homosexual man, then I see it used by people who are definitely not strictly homosexual, and now I have no fucking idea. I have been left behind on the gender-sexuality vocabulary train.

But, whatever I am, I think it means I have more options. I like options.

5 Comments leave one →
  1. December 4, 2008 1:54 am

    I moved in identification from straight -> bisexual -> pansexual -> queer. Here’s my thinking on this one:

    1. Straight: Much like you, for ages I just sort of didn’t get that my attraction to women was just that – attraction.
    2. Bisexual: Once I realized I liked women, and could see them as sexual and emotional partners, I figured that bi was the right word.
    3. Pansexual: I discovered that I loved gender-fuckery, androgynes and trans folk, and that the gender scale (as I knew it) was a misunderstood concept. I switched away from bisexual because I found an inherent binary in the word. (May does not, by the way, and if you read our archives back and forth in early September 2007 you’ll see the debate we had about the concept.)
    4. Queer: Pansexual because a less useful word for me, as I don’t think it’s well-defined, and I also think it’s been used in some ways and with some implications I don’t enjoy. I also thought queer was a synonym for gay for a long time, and still encounter people who think this. My definition of queer is a sexuality that diverges from heteronormativity. I like the word queer because it is fluid, it does mean a million different things, but at the same time it can act as a unifying moniker for many of the different pieces of my identity.

    My 2 cents. :).

  2. ranat permalink
    December 4, 2008 3:15 am

    Thank you for your two cents. :)

    This is something that keeps popping up in my brain at random moments and leaves me with “Huh…” since I realize I can no longer accurately respond to questions with a glib, “Oh, I’m straight.” I’m not fond of labels, or categories, but I’m still wondering which one I fall into. Then part of me’s like, “Eh, fuck the label and fuck who you want.” But I also like conciseness, and precision. And having one word to describe the genders I’m sexually attracted to is more concise (though not necessarily more precise) than, “Well, I like a, b, e, j, k, l, m, q, t, v, z, omega, and kudabish.” Ah, conflicting communicatory desires…

    I have read some of your discussion with maymay about gender fluid vocabulary. There is certainly a lack of vocabulary, and it’s hard to even create a vocabulary considering some genders just exist on alternate dimensions to the binary gender paradigm (I love that word). I do think “bi” carries with it the connotation of gender binary (they do have the same etymology, which is something I believe always must be considered when looking at the meanings of words in their modern usage), which is why I hesitate to use it for myself.

  3. December 4, 2008 3:46 am

    I also like conciseness and precision, and I am in no way ‘anti-label’. I actually think labels, in and of themselves, are useful tools, without which we all would have a whole lot more trouble communicating.

    ‘Queer’ is not precise (though rather concise), but I’m all right with that in the end. The word is flexible enough that I find identifying as queer is more likely to begin conversations with interested people, and that’s really what I’m after.

    I also really like that definitions of queer don’t have to be restricted to the gender of the person you’re attracted to. In that way, I like to think that my identity as queer actually encompasses my identities as kinky, dominant, differently gendered, and poly, as well as my attraction to a range of other genders & sexes. It gives me a way to feel more integrated.

  4. ranat permalink
    December 4, 2008 5:41 am

    I can definitely see the integration bit being attractive.

    “I also really like that definitions of queer don’t have to be restricted to the gender of the person you’re attracted to.”

    I’ve been thinking some about terms that don’t have the person’s sex/gender wrapped up in them but still identifies who a person is attracted to, and that made me think of it. “Heterosexual” and “homosexual” both imply sex/gender, but for instance, I am an androphile, a gynophile, and a gerontophile, which says nothing about my sex or gender. I hadn’t really thought of terms that instead didn’t refer to my gender/sex. *chews*


  1. Gender, and Markers, and– Hmm, I don’t actually have a third item « beyond the hills

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