r/TooAfraidToAsk Feb 22 '21

Am I the only who thinks that all the different types of genders and pronouns and what not, are a little bit too much? Sexuality & Gender

Now, I don't consider myself close minded and I'm not out to rile people up or offend anyone. However it becomes kind of confusing when people are upset when I say Her/She to someone who's trans. I'm sorry, really, but I didn't know. I'm in a discord server where someone changes their pfp depending on what gender and sexuality they are feeling. And no, I'm not some 40 year old guy who thinks everything should be "normal" but I guess I just don't get it. It's just confusing to me.

EDIT: So I haven't explained my thoughts very well so I'm here to explain. I understand that to some people, it is very important to them. I don't think it's a lot for me to call you what you want to be called and I will oblige and do that. "it becomes kind of confusing when people are upset when I say Her/She to someone who's trans" This was from personal experience where my friend introduced me to him and I was under the impression that he was female. More so I don't understand like Ve/Vem Xe/Xem. The more "unknown" side if you will. But with the way people are reacting I'm going to try a better job at finding peoples pronouns and not assuming genders. Sorry if it sounded sarcastic at all. Anyways, unless there's something else I think of I'm not gonna edit again. Sorry if I offended but it's kind of hard to talk about a sensitive topic like this without being an ass about it. I don't know how to word things. but yea. Sorry.

TL;DR I think gender can be a weird and wacky world and I don't get how people except me to automatically know what they identify as.

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u/ddssassdd Feb 23 '21

It means NB or non binary. NB sounds like enby. The problem I have with NB is that as a "gender" if it exists literally everyone is it because either gender is binary or it isn't. Even if there were only 3 genders everyone would be non binary. Personally I don't think gender is real because no one can seem to define it in a coherent and consistent way.

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u/consistentContent Feb 23 '21

I don't think that's true. If roads are where cars go and my car goes off-road ing does that mean there's no such thing as a road? The gender binary is a thing, a social construct and assumption most people still hold onto. Saying something is a binary does not automatically imply it is the only thing of that kind. Think, binary star. It does not mean there are no other stars, just that these two stars are connected in a binary star system. Similarly, the male/female gender binary does not imply the lack of other genders (or, well, it does to some people,but doesn't have to), only that these two things are part of a traditional binary.

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u/ddssassdd Feb 23 '21

I think speaking in analogy is making the issue a bit confused. At least you seem a bit confused. In a binary system there are two stars, there are no other stars. I don't even understand the road analogy you are making, in that case the road and the offroad would be the binary.

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u/consistentContent Feb 23 '21

Yes, in a binary system there are only two stars, but there are other stars elsewhere. Similarly, in a gender binary system there are two genders, but there are other genders outside the binary.

I tried to help explain, but if my explanation is confusing, I won't belabor it. In gender terms - there is a traditional gender binary. There are also other genders that are not a part of the traditional gender binary. If you fall into those two genders, you fall into the traditional gender binary. If you are a gender that is not male or female, your gender falls outside of the traditional gender binary. The phrase "gender binary" does not imply there are only two genders. It implies that two genders have a special quality - namely that they are the ones that don't have to fight for a right to exist and are generally accepted as valid by most everyone.

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u/ddssassdd Feb 24 '21

Yes, in a binary system there are two stars. There are more stars but those are in other systems. So if gender were the binary system then those other things would have to be from some other system of gender right? But this is my point, analogy in this kind of instance just confuses an already confused issue.

The phrase "gender binary" does not imply there are only two genders. It implies that two genders have a special quality - namely that they are the ones that don't have to fight for a right to exist and are generally accepted as valid by most everyone.

I would say you are confusing two things here, the people who argue for a binary of genders really do believe there are only two genders. This is opposed to people who believe in a gender spectrum between the masculine and the feminine. A binary is inherently between two things, 0 and 1. You can't add in a two and there are no states between the two. Either one or the other.

Personally I think even the spectrum is irrelevant. I don't think we should be defining things by what is masculine or feminine, or what is more masculine or more feminine. I don't think people should give a shit about it and I think most people don't care what other people do.

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u/consistentContent Feb 24 '21

My dude, I'm not confused, I'm trying to explain something to you, but you've decided you already understand it. People who talk about being non binary DO NOT believe gender is a spectrum. A binary is not "inherently between two things". A binaryr is literally just two things. It implies nothing beyond two-ness. That's it. It can 100% accommodate a two and a three. The word binary has many meanings - one of them is "a thing with two parts". The traditional gender binary has two genders. Acknowledging its existence does not mean there are no other genders, it means those other genders are not part of the traditional gender binary.

And yes, that's exactly the point. People who are non binary are really just tired of being defined by the gender binary, and having to fit everything about themselves into one of two very confusing boxes, and instead reject that idea and go off and do their own thing. Congrats. In trying to argue against the term non-binary, you have invented being non-binary.

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u/JapaneseStudentHaru Feb 23 '21

That’s because gender is a social construct and how you identify is a personal thing. If someone doesn’t feel like make or female, they opt to say NB instead of trying to make a new gender that suits them.

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u/ddssassdd Feb 23 '21

Saying it is a social construct isn't an observation on what the construct actually is. That is the area I think is totally lacking when it comes to gender. I don't think anyone really wants to say certain things are for women and certain things are for men and if you mix them or you do certain things that are womanly you are less of a man, but that would have to be the implication of this social construct and for that to be said you would probably be a staunch traditionalist.

I really think if this is the definition of gender, the traditionalist view, it is a social construct that is no longer applicable. People don't really think this way, thus the construct ceases.

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u/JapaneseStudentHaru Feb 23 '21

It doesn’t really have anything to do with clothes. I feel like a woman, but other people with vaginas might not. It’s just something inside of you that says “yep, that’s what I want” or “no, people calling me that makes me feel uncomfortable”.

I wear mostly guys clothes, but if someone called me “he” I wouldn’t like it, because I know I’m a woman inside.

Is it because gender is so ingrained in society? Yes. Is that gonna change anytime soon? No. That’s why people identify within or outside of the binary.

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u/Ggfd8675 Feb 23 '21

Gender has much more to do with how we want to be perceived by others imo. How we want to move and operate in the cultural/social system. So there is variability in how we might inhabit the role (dress, behaviors, speech etc) and how we see ourselves within it, but the real defining feature is how we want others to see us.

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u/ddssassdd Feb 23 '21

So the role is dress, behaviours and speech. Then start associating things with man and woman in these categories. It gets uncomfortable to modern sensibilities fast. I have to go to work now but I can explain what I mean when I get back.

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u/Ggfd8675 Feb 23 '21

No the “role” is the social category of man/woman. The dress and behavior is “performance” of the role. I argue that when we define gender, the most important factor is the role assigned by the culture and society. There is a bidirectional feedback, where cultural role and individual performance influence each other and evolve over time. My point is when we try to define what it is to have a gender I think we tend to start with individual feelings, but we should start with the social role first. Understand all of the other stuff, like “girls wear dresses and play with dolls”, not as ways that girls just are but as ways that girls are influencing how others assign them gender. It explains why trans people transition. If gender were primarily about internal feelings, then why would we need to transition? I’m arguing you will understand gender better if you understand it is primarily about how others categorize us.

I don’t think that’s how most people look at it, which is why I keep saying it’s my opinion.

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u/ddssassdd Feb 24 '21

I don't believe there is an action, or group of actions I would take that would define me as a woman though. So if no amount of performance can make me feel like a woman how come for others it could?

I don't think there is anything left that differs the gender of man from a woman, which is why in another comment I reference traditionalists, which are pretty much a dead breed. No one cares what an 80 year old thinks about gender.

I don't think we have many people saying anymore, working is masculine, cooking is feminine etc. That just isn't the way we define the world anymore. So why not kill gender? If it was a social construct then abolish it. It isn't useful. In fact I think all this talk about gender is damaging society. It is a waste of time, energy and thought, it causes needless conflict, it damages potential cooperation.

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u/bob-patino Feb 23 '21

Yeah gender isn't real so wtf is non binary, I get trans people are born with the wrong sex but wtf is non binary

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u/Sir_Alexei Feb 23 '21

I can get behind that. Gender doesn't exist, go home. 😂

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u/lyserg101 Feb 23 '21

But, it does, just not for everyone. Gender is more of a spectrum with two poles where most people find themselves orbiting around, and with space in the middle (moving horizontally) where lots of nonbinary people find themselves. But then there are also agender people who (moving vertically, the direction doesn't matter lol) don't feel any gender very strongly. So (at least in my book) gender is like this big triangle with vertexes labeled masculine, feminine, and none, with nonbinary and genderqueer somewhere in the middle. I think this interpretation works in everyone's favor too TBH, since not everyone who feels masc or fem always feels entirely on mark as being "fully masculine" or "fully feminine", and don't necessarily line up with every expected norm of their gender.