The Chant

The Red Bulls won their season opener. A come from behind victory on the road. And opposing fans, of expansion team Atlanta United, used gay slurs.

A habit in Mexican soccer, shouting this homophobic word on goal kicks, has been spreading through MLS.

Not at Red Bull Arena. Not in the South Ward. Thank goodness. But by visiting fans and at other stadiums? Yes.

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The Doctor

I went to a new doctor yesterday.

I do not, as a rule, go to the doctor. I am generally physically healthy and when I’m not, I wait it out unless I am at death’s door.

There are a number of reasons for that, ranging from phone anxiety (I don’t want to make an appointment) to poor past experiences (being made to feel ashamed). I haven’t been comfortable going to the doctor’s since I was a kid. I had a great pediatrician. I haven’t had a good, let alone great, doctor since.

I think that may have changed.

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Romance

I’ve been reading a lot of queer romance lately. It seems like an odd genre for an ace and probably aro (still trying to figure that part out) person. I can’t put my finger on it, but something about them appeals to me.

Maybe it’s just that it’s so easy to find queer characters and themes in romance as compared to other genres. It’s also much easier to read them discreetly: I don’t think I’ve come across any queer romance that isn’t available as an e-book.

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Oblivious

For a long time, I didn’t know that I was different. In my cheerful childhood obliviousness, I just assumed that everyone felt the way I did, even in the face of direct evidence to the contrary. As a teenager, my obliviousness had a different cause – I was severely depressed – but the result was the same. I didn’t think I was odd. I filtered everything through my own thoughts and experiences and it took me a stunningly long time to realize some crucial things about my own identity.

When I did realize, I thought the most obvious thing, in retrospect, was my asexuality, and I wrote about that before. That was always there and always obvious, probably to everyone except me; I just didn’t have the words for it, so I was trying to fit myself into the boxes I knew.

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LGBTQ Stats

I just finished reading LGBTQ Stats by David Deschamps and Bennett Singer, and it was by turns uplifting and sobering.

Seeing the general upward trend in LGBTQ acceptance across a variety of categories and in various circumstances gives me hope for the future.

At the same time, LGBTQ people are still facing serious discrimination, and even face execution in certain countries.

For anyone who is curious about “lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender and queer people by the numbers”, this book is definitely worth a read.

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Independence

I live with my parents. I’m not so old that that fact is remarkable, but at the same time many people my age have moved out. I’m on the cusp, according to American culture.

If you had asked me six months ago, I would have said I was in no hurry to move out. I have a job and I’m in graduate school; living at home is a good way to save money.

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Complications

Part of the reason I haven’t come out anywhere other than the pseudonymous, pseudo-anonymous internet is that I dread the explanations. I dread the reactions as well, from a few people in particular, but I think I would be more likely to come out at least to some specific people if I could just say, “I’m gay.”

I might get negative reactions but at least I wouldn’t get anyone asking, “What does that mean?”

If I say I’m asexual, that’s likely to require an explanation. If I say I’m nonbinary, that’s definitely going to require an explanation.

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“How Many Are There?”

My mom was talking about some “really diverse event” a work colleague had attended and she used the phrase “all genders” when describing the attendees.

My dad immediately interrupted to say, “All genders? How many are there?”

Not, of course, as an actual question.

As a sarcastic one.

My mom backtracked, changed her wording, and went on with the story.

I wanted to say something. But, as usual, I didn’t. I stayed silent and removed myself from the room, from the conservation, from the things I am so tired of hearing.

How many are there?

There are more genders in heaven and earth, Horatio, than are dreamt of in your philosophy….

Healthcare

I don’t see why someone’s religion trumps someone else’s right to medical care. What’s that quote about “your right to swing your fist ends at my nose”? Your rights don’t include the right to cause harm to other people. And refusing medical care certainly qualifies as harm…

I already have a rough relationship with the medical profession. Some of it is due to my queer identity, some of it is due to mental health concerns. I don’t like exposing my  body, due to both gender issues and self-harm scars. I don’t like talking to doctors due to anxiety about how they’ll react to both of those things.

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Internet Dichotomy

I’m having a hard time right now and I’m finding that the internet is both the best and the worst thing for times like these.

The best because I can get out of my head. I can distract myself with lightness and humorous memes and pictures of kittens.

The worst because I can fall further into my head. I can immerse myself in darkness and cruel memes and pictures of misery.

The best because I can find reasons to feel better. The worst because I can find reasons to feel worse.

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