A personal announcement, emphatic thank-you, and cheers to Fedora.

garion333 wrote:
I don't form relationships of any kind with people casually or lightly, and I've never had one just... End.

Those firsts are the worst. Hang in there.

This times 100.

Tanglebones wrote:

Good infographic I found on transphobic terminology

Trigger warning: transphobic terminology (duh)

I would be hesitant to call someone transphobic if they ask one or two of those questions out of genuine ignorance. I know that even just a few years ago, I was ignorant regarding transgender concerns, and when I would ask questions like that, I was making a genuine effort to wrap my mind around what was (for me) a very foreign concept. But my intent was to understand so that I could accept and empathize.

Fortunately my intent was understood, so I got patient responses that helped me understand better.

Farscry wrote:
Tanglebones wrote:

Good infographic I found on transphobic terminology

Trigger warning: transphobic terminology (duh)

I would be hesitant to call someone transphobic if they ask one or two of those questions out of genuine ignorance. I know that even just a few years ago, I was ignorant regarding transgender concerns, and when I would ask questions like that, I was making a genuine effort to wrap my mind around what was (for me) a very foreign concept. But my intent was to understand so that I could accept and empathize.

Fortunately my intent was understood, so I got patient responses that helped me understand better. :)

We had the same discussion on IRC; I think you're right, in that some of the questions, like preferred pronoun, aren't immediately apparent - on the other hand, someone (Hypatian?) posted a story earlier in the thread about an abusive employee at a DMV continually referring to a transperson by the wrong pronoun as a belittling maneuver. Tone matters, as does intent.

NSMike wrote:

And to be blunt, but without any intention of offense, even those extremely kind and open offerings of help that I have already privately received from the community have done little, through no fault of anyone. I don't know what I need right now. Time is the common element among all suggestions. Perhaps that's all I've got. I don't form relationships of any kind with people casually or lightly, and I've never had one just... End. All of the old friends in my past that I don't see anymore, we've just drifted apart. I've never been in the situation where someone tells me that our relationship is now over, and I have to respect that. I can't process that. And I can't help feeling like I did something terribly wrong.

Blunt is good in this case.

And you know from my messages to you that unfortunately I very much empathize with your current struggle. I do wish I could do more to help, as we can obviously see that others here do too, but yeah. Unfortunately we can only offer ears to listen and encouragement whenever you're needing it.

And yeah, I completely know how little that can sometimes help, even if you appreciate that people care about you.

Farscry wrote:
Tanglebones wrote:

Good infographic I found on transphobic terminology

Trigger warning: transphobic terminology (duh)

I would be hesitant to call someone transphobic if they ask one or two of those questions out of genuine ignorance. I know that even just a few years ago, I was ignorant regarding transgender concerns, and when I would ask questions like that, I was making a genuine effort to wrap my mind around what was (for me) a very foreign concept. But my intent was to understand so that I could accept and empathize.

Fortunately my intent was understood, so I got patient responses that helped me understand better. :)

The terminology is still transphobic, whether the speaker is or not. For related discussion of racist language, see this amazing Ill Doctrine video that I will never stop sharing with people:

cube wrote:
Rubb Ed wrote:
garion333 wrote:

Is that still a thing people do?

Not really, but it hearkens back to a time long distant where gay men went to these things called "bars".

The more you know...

*cue NSMike's avatar and some inspirational music*

wordsmythe wrote:

The terminology is still transphobic, whether the speaker is or not. For related discussion of racist language, see this amazing Ill Doctrine video that I will never stop sharing with people:

And you shouldn't stop sharing as that video was fantastic. I hadn't seen that and now have it logged for future use.

wordsmythe wrote:
Farscry wrote:

I would be hesitant to call someone transphobic if they ask one or two of those questions out of genuine ignorance.

The terminology is still transphobic, whether the speaker is or not.

Oh, please don't misunderstand me; I wasn't trying to claim that the terminology itself isn't transphobic. Just that it's important to carefully evaluate if someone is asking out of ignorance rather than transphobia; if so, then you can use their questions as a good educational opportunity (including explaining to them why the terminology is hurtful).

Racist terminology is an excellent parallel. I've had to deal with educating people who use racist terminology out of ignorance rather than informed intent. It's uncomfortable for them (and I've been in that position of being the ignorant one myself) because no one likes to face the fact that they've unwittingly spoken in a hurtful manner, but it still is a worthwhile discussion.

Edit: and yes, that video is awesome!

I think that poster is better as a "kick-starter" for thinking about these things, rather than a list of "stuff not to do". A jumping-off point for thinking about what it must feel like to be in that position, and how to behave thoughtfully around people who are.

Although it's also good as "if you see a trans person and some asshat is treating them like this intentionally and they're clearly not okay with it, please help them".

Hypatian wrote:

I think that poster is better as a "kick-starter" for thinking about these things, rather than a list of "stuff not to do". A jumping-off point for thinking about what it must feel like to be in that position, and how to behave thoughtfully around people who are.

That's the trick as I see things. Before you speak (or publish), try to empathize with the individual people about whom you're talking or to whom you are referring, and how they're going to feel about your words.

So, Sunday morning my Dad (which essentially means my parents) and my sister added me out of the blue on Google+. I hadn't sent an invite or anything, they just did it.

I haven't been using my G+ stream, but, as it happens, I've been keeping a running list of items I've come across on the internet that I wanted to share with them one day, all dealing with gay rights and addressing atheism in a positive, or at least rational, light. Who knows if they'll actually see it, but I found a new use for my G+ stream.

Sounds encouraging. I think it's a good sign when people show an active interest in keeping in touch.

Fingers crossed, Mike!
I'm glad you've found a possible avenue for this.
Edit: This isn't the place to make jabs at google+. I'm a terrible person.

I made this post on G+ this morning, but figured I'd put it here, too.

Today, in the United States, we do a remarkable thing. We enter a small, enclosed area, and push buttons on electronic screens, check boxes on pieces of paper, or pull mechanical levers, all to control, to some extent, the world we want to live in, from the kinds of votes that will affect our next door neighbors, to the kinds of votes that will affect someone living in an entirely different state.

You all know me, to some extent, but most likely have learned something about me in the past year that you didn't know before. All kinds of political issues are rolling around in my head, but it is hard for any one of them to be as personal as my human rights. When you enter the voting booth today, think of me. Think of how what you do may affect my happiness from this day forward. Think of thousands in this country older than me who have been fighting for decades to have a better world. Think of all of the young people still growing into a world that wants to tell them they are faulty, and less of a person because of who they love. Think of your own happiness, how you achieved it, and what you have gained because of it. If you are married, look into the eyes of your spouse and savor those feelings for a moment. Think of that button, or paper, or lever, and consider that it only takes such a simple action to make a difference. To decide whether or not you want to encourage the idea that people should not be able to look into the eyes of someone and feel the same way, even though their gender is the same, and be able to call them their spouse.

I am a gay man. One day, I hope to be with the man I love, and to shoulder every burden, hope, fear, joy, sorrow, consequence, and benefit that comes with those rights. Please, think before you vote against that for me.

Thank you Mike, for a poignant post, and the thread in general.

There have been some semi-thread-relevant thoughts bouncing in head recently, but I don't want to bog it down with theology, even if it is supportive theology. Instead I'll just say that I updated my Facebook profile pic to this this morning:

IMAGE(http://www.insidebainbridge.com/wp-content/uploads/2012/10/R74.jpg)

You aren't alone.

Garden Ninja wrote:

Thank you Mike, for a poignant post, and the thread in general.

There have been some semi-thread-relevant thoughts bouncing in head recently, but I don't want to bog it down with theology, even if it is supportive theology. Instead I'll just say that I updated my Facebook profile pic to this this morning:

IMAGE(http://www.insidebainbridge.com/wp-content/uploads/2012/10/R74.jpg)

You aren't alone.

Love this.

I also voted to approve R74.

Today I overheard a co-worker saying that literally the only thing that matters to him in this election is which candidate will lower his taxes by the most and give him, personally, the most money.

I thought of this thread, and others like it, and how there are stakes much more important than money on the line. Thank you for your post.

In Maryland, it's Question 6. I'd go back to the poll and vote 'yes' over and over again if they let me. There's a lot going on in this election, but this was one of the single most important issues to me.

Though my presidential vote didn't make much of a difference, I had the pleasure of casting a vote against this guy.

To disfavor practicing homosexuals in custody matters is not invidious discrimination, nor is it legislating personal morality. On the contrary, disfavoring practicing homosexuals in custody matters promotes the general welfare of the people of our State in accordance with our law, which is the duty of its public servants...

ಠ_ಠ

NSmike, I've had people posting 'down here' on Facebook about political donations, donation sources, and all sorts of inconsequential crap.

Voting down here is mandatory, and tax payer funded. They have no understanding of the US political system, how candidates 'need' funding and many forget this.

I have just posted your take on the election on my own status attributing it to "thoughts from a very good friend of mine, in the US, regarding the election."

I hope you don't mind, and I hope it changes their focus and political commentary from one of money, to human values.

Thank you for the eloquence of your words. I only hope that the World in general can come together on this. I have far too many friends in the same place as you, hoping that one day the term 'union' can finally be gender neutral.

YAY! 74 passed!
I'm so proud of my state tonight. I'm so glad I got a chance to cast my vote!

m0nk3yboy wrote:

NSmike, I've had people posting 'down here' on Facebook about political donations, donation sources, and all sorts of inconsequential crap.

Voting down here is mandatory, and tax payer funded. They have no understanding of the US political system, how candidates 'need' funding and many forget this.

I have just posted your take on the election on my own status attributing it to "thoughts from a very good friend of mine, in the US, regarding the election."

I hope you don't mind, and I hope it changes their focus and political commentary from one of money, to human values.

Thank you for the eloquence of your words. I only hope that the World in general can come together on this. I have far too many friends in the same place as you, hoping that one day the term 'union' can finally be gender neutral.

Don't mind at all. Thank you.

Rights for gays, right now. Rights for gays, oh yeah.

Right now.

Interesting look back at the last 8 years and in particular Obama's evolution on the issue.

A couple of quick personal notes:

In a few days, it will have been a year since I moved. A lot has happened to me since then... And not much has changed dramatically. I regret that a little.

On October 11, which is "National Coming Out Day" I wrote a letter to my aunt and uncle who live near my parents, coming out to them. I hadn't heard anything directly from them since then, but I did find out from my mother that she and he (her brother) talked about it. Thanksgiving is at his house this year, and he informed my parents that I was most definitely invited to come for dinner. Minor annoyance that they couldn't just invite me themselves, but oh well. Old habits, most likely. I'd been living at home for so long, invites always went through my parents.

I had been writing a letter to my parents to address some things around the one year anniversary, but after re-reading some things in this thread, I'd forgotten some of the advice given the last time I tried to smooth things over, and realized that they don't need my input. So I'm tabling that whole idea. And probably taking it off the table, unless something warrants a response. I just need to go on living, and being who I am, and forget about the discomfort I feel. So that's my goal with Thanksgiving this year. If the conversation turns my sexuality, I'll just be frank, and as comfortable with it as I can be. Otherwise, I'm just who I always was. Which is largely true.

This is definitely one of those times, though, where I'm really kicking myself for not coming out younger. I've missed out on so much, and I would probably be able to deal with a lot of the issues that are holding me back right now so much easier.

NSMike wrote:

This is definitely one of those times, though, where I'm really kicking myself for not coming out younger. I've missed out on so much, and I would probably be able to deal with a lot of the issues that are holding me back right now so much easier.

That's a terrible trap to fall into. And, you know, there are probably older people than you who wish they'd had the strength to come out at your age.

A lot of my issues are the result of having waited too long to do something to change. It's evident in just about everything I do, and it's a lesson I refuse to learn, apparently.

Yeah. But... better to look forward to the good things to come than spend time wishing it had been otherwise. Try to do better next time, and if you don't, no big deal. You'll get around to it.

One of these days, I'm even going to listen to my own advice and stop getting depressed about being bald.

Nothing to add here, except go Mike!

NSMike wrote:

A lot of my issues are the result of having waited too long to do something to change. It's evident in just about everything I do, and it's a lesson I refuse to learn, apparently.

I've seen the young gay scene in major urban areas. It can get pretty intense.

Maybe it's looking back on the bar/club scene as I experienced it when I was younger ... I don't know. I learned a lot from it eventually, but mostly unhappy lessons.