Lgbtqiap+

You don’t like all those labels and flags. You find it extremely overflowing. It makes you roll your eyes. You don’t understand why I cry because of what you say. You say I can just be a U, unique. Everybody can be a U. You say I don’t need labelling to be myself. You say every person has the freedom to be themselves. But no, I cannot be who I am as long as I am born with a shit load of expectations that I will never be able to fulfil. I cannot be who I am as long as I continuously feel how you project an idea of me and of who I should be based on me having a vagina. I cannot be who I am as long as I feel so deeply lonely and alienated just because I don’t even know there are others with similar life experiences;  because they all just seem to hide protecting themselves from violent stigma. I cannot be who I am as long as I live a third of my life believing there is something seriously wrong with me and another third unlearning that belief to dedict the final third to finally be true to myself and helping others to unlearn these beliefs.

You say every man has feminine energies and every woman has masculine energies and that’s ok. I say what I wish I someday don’t have to say anymore. I say gender is a cultural construct implying a binary hierarchization of society based on innate sexual organs. I say gender is the purest form of unquestioned discrimination. I say everybody suffers from this societal organization on whether you have a penis or a vagina.

But you are not listening. You say I can love whomever I want to love. We started this discussion because you persist consciously in calling my non-binary partner he/him. You rolled your eyes when I told you I might be genderfluid, who knows. You raised one eyebrow suspiciously when I told you I’m pansexual for sure because I can love people outside the gender binary, I can love people for whom they are and not for their gender or their looks. You sigh when I explain you what genderfluidity, non-binary identity, and pansexuality mean. ‘So superfluous’ You look at me disappointed. Why is your daughter like this, I can hear you thinking – or did you just say that out loud? You repeat that I don’t need all this excessive labelling. Proudly you announce that you raised me without labelling. I think, I don’t say, that this might be exactly the problem.

I had no idea until my seventeenth that such a thing like bisexuality exists. I almost broke up with my boyfriend convinced that I might be a lesbian – so I couldn’t be heterosexual at the same time, right? Luckily he just laughed at me and introduced me to this thing that you can fall in love with people from both genders. One year ago I learned about pansexuality and I cried. I did. I really cried, several times. It’s just a word, it’s just a label, but it meant the community and acceptance I had longed for since very long. I didn’t want to be unique and alone. I wanted to be accepted, understood, normal. I wanted to feel like nothing is wrong with me for not believing in the discursive religion of Gender and Sexuality, with a capital because they seem to be fixed and unquestioned until you grow older and you discover that they are not.

I am crying out of freedom and anger. You are rolling your eyes out of negligence and frustration. You are disappointed in my pain. We disagree. We should not disagree on this.

Author: Maysa Mariposa

UNDIVIDED for KU Leuven

UNDIVIDED is a student-faculty diversity initiative at KU Leuven. For a more inclusive university. Contact us at UNDIVIDED@kuleuven.be or on our social media.

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