My Queer ‘Choice’

This is clearly a long story, and a lot more in-depth than I’m going to share online. I’ve posted a few times vaguely about dealing with hateful people. but I’ve rarely gotten into the nitty gritty of it. I am quite private and rarely talk about issues I’m dealing with on social media, and I try not to put a lot of my kids life online. For a while I was going back and forth on the issue, trying to decide if I should confront this person or just avoid her, but I’ve decided I need to set an example for my kids by standing up to the hate I’m receiving.

There are many ways to deal with negativity, and usually my choice is to ignore and move on. I don’t like to hold on to hate, and for the most part I’ve found you can’t change ignorant people’s minds so they aren’t worth your time. It’s a little harder to turn things off in person, but it can still be done. But this time was different. I’ve gotten comments from strangers, and family about my trans-ness and I’ve written before about dealing with them and not being accepted, but this was the first time someone I thought was a friend showed their transphobia. A big part of me wanted to go the avoidance route. I could just smile to this person’s face and stop associating with her as much as possible. Easier said than done because we run in a lot of the same social circles, but not impossible. But the more I thought about it, the more I saw how much this would affect my children. What a disservice I was going to be doing to them by turning the other cheek so to speak and still being polite to this person. By doing so I would be showing my children they have to accept being treated this way. So I needed another plan.

For some reference, one of the many things this person has done over the past few weeks was to tell a few other parents in our social circle: Gray’s gender ‘choice’ is fucking up her kids.

This person is clearly transphobic. Not only did she use the wrong pronouns for me when she knows the correct ones, but she also outright said that my gender dysphoria and identity is a choice, as well as the worst thing: that being who I am is detrimental to my children. Upon first hearing this I was livid. She has, as long as I’ve known her, told me over and over that she is an ally. That she supports ‘the gays’ (her wording). She started to say it so much it came off as a little slimy, like she had to convince herself she supported me and queer people, but I let it go trying to think the best of people. I soon learned however, she was only okay with queer people as long as they stayed out of her life and her little bubble.

My first red flag with this woman was when her daughter came out as bisexual. I had known for awhile her daughter was bisexual as she came out to my daughter months before and my kid tells me most everything. When her daughter came out her, she told her she was ‘confused’ and not really bi. She told her she was confusing feelings of friendship with love and that she would grow out of it. This of course pissed me off, but she’s not my kid so there was little I could do about it. I wanted to keep allowing this kid around so she’d have a safe space with my daughter.  There were several more issues with this person, where she was mad at my child for posting pictures of queer people in love on Pinterest, claiming it made her child uncomfortable. This was Disney type stuff no worse than you’d see in a PG movie. The issue was the art was same sex couples. I wouldn’t reprimand my child for it, she lives in a queer household. Posting PG pictures of queer people in love is her normal, and it’s extremely homophobic for anyone to tell me it’s not okay for my kid to post such things. If these were heterosexual images of a similar nature it would not have been a problem.

This series of actions over the past few months made me joke with my friends that she must think I’m the queer person corrupting her kids. It started off as a joke, but now she has confirmed my words with her statements.

So I spent some time thinking it over, and centering myself. I don’t like to act out of anger. I like to come from a calm place so I’m not accused of being the angry overreacting queer person. I’ve decided I’m going to confront her face to face next time she talks to me, which I’m pretty sure she will.

I’m not sure what I’m going to say yet, as I will probably write fifteen drafts of that as well. But it will probably include telling her her comments are transphobic and ignorant. That my gender and identity aren’t a choice. I am not going go back down, or hide in a corner.

Yes, my gender affects my children, but not because it’s a choice for me or people like me. My gender affects my children because of transphobic individuals who hate me because of what I am.  Day in and day out, my children have to witness transphobia, and the affect it has on me and our lives. They feel my pain, and experience the comments I get in public, and witness my so called friends treating me poorly, and accusing me of turning their kids gay. But my gender isn’t the problem. My queerness isn’t the problem. This wouldn’t affect my children if they didn’t have to witness first hand transphobia. My kids love me for who I am. They easily understood the concept when it was explained to them. Children aren’t negatively affected by having gay parents. They are negatively affected by the hate of others and I’m going to show them it won’t be tolerated, and it won’t be pushed aside, and it won’t be ignored.

 

This blog is part of a new series on queer parenting Gray is starting. New post next week!

 

Gray’s new release

KINGCONSORT-2.jpg Avoiding sleeping with women was my specialty, an art form even. As the future King of England I couldn’t be caught sleeping with men. My whole life played out in front of the paparazzi, and they didn’t miss a thing.

I had a carefully crafted womanizing persona to maintain. My life came with rules, all of which I broke when I couldn’t resist a one night stand with the enemy: A beautiful paparazzo with a heart of gold. He may be the only person who doesn’t want me for my title, and he can never be anything more than my secret.

But secrets have a way of coming out and not only will they scare him away, but they’ll lose me the crown.

9 thoughts on “My Queer ‘Choice’

  1. I know I have said this to you before but you are an amazing person. Knowing you has enriched my life. I think it is important to know who you are and to be that person, whatever role that takes. I can’t imagine the difficulties you go through because I am to a certain degree what is normal. But I hope that one day normal will include all partnerships. I have talked with my daughters about being inclusive of everyone, that each person sees themselves in a certain way and it is not wrong and should be respected.

    1. Awe! You have made me melty. I’m so glad to have gotten to meet you and get to know you. Thank you for all your support for all these years. Our kids are going to be the huge change, and things are going to get better. I know it.

  2. You’ve made me cry but also made me proud of how you are dealing with this. I’m not gay but I’ve experienced hate all my life. I’m of big build and people take offence by it. I don’t like confrontation and it has made me to dislike myself at times and I’m not confident face to face with people. My daughter told me a couple of years ago that she was bisexual. I hugged her and told her I love her so much. Both my children have been brought up to accept people as they are. I’m so proud of how they are so accepting of people. That’s all we can do is to teach our children how to love and not hate. Unfortunately they will always be haters. She is no friend. But on the bright side you have a lot of supporters who love you for who you are and what you stand up for. I can’t wait to meet you in person hopefully at Rare London. Be warned, I’m very shy in person! Lots of hugs xxxx

  3. Thank you so much for your comment. And you are a wonderful parent and your daughter is lucky to have you. There will always be haters, but I am so hopeful for this next generation. There are so many of us raising our kids to be accepting, that they will out number the haters. I really believe that, and it gives me faith and strength to go on. I have the best people around me, and I am really lucky.

  4. I finally had the time to sit down and read this full post! It is powerful! I had the pleasure of meeting you in Denver at Book Bonana, I recognized you from social media and had to have my own fangirl moment because I enjoy your books. I honestly had no idea of your journey when I met you, I was just excited to meet YOU! You are an inspiration and a power and a voice!

  5. I believe everything you are is what makes your daughter who she is. You’ve taught her how important it is to be yourself, to live the only way you could live in order to be a full human being. Don’t get me wrong, I know queerness and gayness is not a choice, gosh do I, but so many choose to burry parts of themselves for society and social requirements; it result in depression and even sometimes, giving up on life all together. Trust me, I know. I don’t share publicly about myself although it’s becoming harder and harder as I grow old because some things pisses me off a lot and shutting my mouth is quite a challenge some days. It took me years and years to come to term to every I hold inside. Everything I am. I’ve been through many dark phases and most of them I did not understand because I was not informed well enough and was sheltered by a very difficult relationship (not technically violent physically but definitely psychologically and emotionally) that didn’t allow me to discover who I was. So two years and an half ago, when I got out of that hold, I finally was able to look at myself in a mirror for the first time and allow myself to see what was there. It was a long journey ahead and I’m grateful I’ve found ways to get the answers I never got before. And people to support me. But if there’s one thing this journey has taught me is how much starting to live how I was supposed to live, to be how I was supposed to be, brought so much to my daughter and son. Because I showed them something you can’t show you kids with pretty words and empty content. Not only to be yourself and never let anyone bring you down, but I showed them that not everything in life is black and white. Not everyone is the conventional form society sets as correct (for the majority). My daughter is such an open mind, she does accept everyone for who they are. And that, even if her father is a homophobic, racist, transphobic jerk or hating basically anything different than what his “deep values” tell him is right; she had both side and chose by herself, I didn’t force her… but because she had an example. She told me once she finds it much more easier to love than to hate, especially if she doesn’t understand that hate in the first place. So next time someone tells you that you impact your daughter because of who you are, be f*cking proud because she’s a beautiful spirit for everything you’ve shown her by just accepting to be yourself. I know I am today when I see how loving and caring she is and moreover, she sees that the human being can be beautiful in so many ways. Love your blog. And your books.

    1. I can not thank you enough for your comment or sharing your story. It has touched me. Your kids are lucky to have you as an example and a parent. I am so happy you’ve got to a place where you can look in the mirror and see yourself. After growing up like I did it took me a long time to reach that place too, but I will never go back, and I will continue to be proud of who I am and the example I set for my kids. Thank you again, from the bottom of my heart.

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