Queer: When Your Identity Does Not Fit

December 2, 2016

Why don’t I fit into what has already been established? Why do the words that exist to express my inner self not fit? Who am I if I do not identify with what I should be? These questions and many others are those that have been raised by those who define themselves as “queer”.

In most cases, the boxes we construct with words are too small to classify reality. The world is too open a concept and when we try to encapsulate it we run the risk of some people being left out of that invented bubble.

“Whoever does not fit the world is always close to finding himself”

-Hermann Hesse-

I am who I am, I am queer

It is strictly known as “queer” to people who feel that their identity with sex does not fit into the male-female binomial. These people are not recognized in any of the categories and can self-describe themselves in many different ways, for example, androgynous, fluid, intergender, genderqueer, etc.

From a more general perspective, the “Queer theory” rejects the binary social construction of man/woman and affirms that the identity with sex is much broader, and cannot be reduced to two or three labels. They point out that reality is not fixed and immutable but diverse, rich and full of nuances.

In this way the adjective “queer” would encompass a multitude of people who feel strange identifying themselves with adjectives that make categories closed and without intermediates or alternatives. These fictitious and socially constructed adjectives would not be valid to describe the wealth that encloses sexuality itself.

I am transsexual, I am androgynous, I am asexual, I am drag, I am intersexual, I am transgender, I am woman but I do not feel identified with this adjective, I am man but I like my femininity. I am someone who wants to define themselves freely and cross socially established boundaries. I am queer.

Not everything is black or white

We are accustomed to defining the world in opposites. We have always heard of white or black, good or bad, male or female. But, when contrasted with reality, we often find that good ones are not always as good as we think, or that between white and black there is a tonality of colors. Much more than you think.

The same thing happens with the identity of sex, being male or female, and the identity with gender, being feminine or being masculine. Sexuality is not limited to two opposing adjectives but to a continuum within them. Forgetting the variety between the two poles would be to impoverish sexuality.

Queer is diversity within a continuum. It is to accept that not everything is white or black and that the person has the right to define himself or herself as they feel and not as it has been imposed on them. Queer is to claim the freedom of thought, way of living and sexuality of each one of us.

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Whoever puts limits does so because they are limited

Labels give us security. It puts order to this chaotic life by meaningful words that can be classified and ordered in a rational way. In many cases the unknown gives us insecurity and fear.

Those who define themselves as “queer” are people who do not fit into socially acceptable normality. Their physique or way of behaving is considered by many “strange” and breaks the mental schemas of the most conservative. Therefore, those who are unable to open their mind beyond their preconceived ideas can act with rejection of everything they consider “strange.”

We like to believe that reality is as we see it. When the world contradicts our ideas, instead of accepting this contradiction, we transform reality to conform to what we already thought. In this way we seek what supports our way of thinking since when we come across the contradiction we feel uncomfortable, questioned and insecure.

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My reality is just as valid as yours

There are as many realities as there are people in the world and all realities are equally valid and respectable. Just because the vision of both people does not coincide does not mean that one is correct and the other not.  It simply indicates that reality is diverse and depends on who perceives it.

To speak of “queer” is to speak of all different possibilities being valid. It is to break with the dichotomies that impoverish reality and accept that, beyond what many believe, the world and people is diverse.

“The future will be” queer “because the boundaries between the most radical extremes (the very feminine woman and the very manly man) are diluting themselves while they still collide in the social space”

-Beyond Labels. Coral Herrera-

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