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Thread: Ambiguity

  1. #1
    Junior Member Thelise's Avatar
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    Ambiguity

    Hopefully this thread isn't a repeat topic. A couple of other current threads have compelled me to write this one.

    When I was at grad school, back in my late 20s, I would get around in my late father's old Harris tweed coat, the buttons of which I had replaced with some hippyish, effeminate ones. I also bought a speckly blue women's rayon scarf with long tassels to go with it. I didn't think what I wearing was the least bit challenging to accepted norms and believed I was surrounded by accepting, if not progressively minded people.

    I later found out that probably this attire, and probably my relaxed and non-committal attitude to certain topics of conversation, had caused a fellow student to assume I was gay. We got along fine initially, and I even did a bit of on-campus work with him. Then at some point he discovered I actually liked girls - hell, I didn't think it was concealed - and he turned majorly sour. Ended up with him telling me he'd like to throw me through a sheetrock wall. He was very straight, jockish even. Turns out, as I heard from others, he just couldn't deal with the ambiguity. You know the attitude: the "I have to know!" type. It was like I had intentionally caused him pychological damage by not clearly presenting my sexuality, which is Bi I should add. Maybe that was the thought that most repulsed him. I don't know.

    This is but one instance in a lifetime of similar smites dating back to early grade school, with the odd bashing here and there.

    I like ambiguity. Though I get the impression that many on this forum would prefer it to be resolved one way or the other. Is it just external pressures that cause that angst of needing resolution, or is the resolution a healthy thing to want? I suppose you can't separate one from the other. Maybe there's some of you with similar life experiences to me that just make you constantly go WTF?! Leave me alone! Get on with your own life!

  2. #2
    Aspiring Member Cristy2's Avatar
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    You are who you are and if that is hard for others to read than so be it. I have "straight" friends that you would swear that they are gay by the way that they talk and dress and on the same coin I have gay friends that you would swear that they were back woods red neck as they come by the way they talk and dress. Then there are those that unless you personally knew them you had no idea which way the wind blows.

  3. #3
    Platinum Member kimdl93's Avatar
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    I am aware that rumors of my cross dressing circulated in my family and the small community where I grew up. Of course, the rumors in my case were founded in reality. I can only think of one occasion where anyone ever challenged me on it, of course with the ďare you gay?Ē question... I was puzzled by the question...and wonder to this day if he asked because he was offended or asked because he was hopeful. Iím sure he was disappointed either way.
    New state, new home, new pics in process

  4. #4
    Senior Member Majella St Gerard's Avatar
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    Your friend obviously has some deep issues.
    Everyone has their own style, just be yourself.

  5. #5
    Aspiring Member abbiedrake's Avatar
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    I hear you, Thelise.
    My parents thought I was gay because by the age of 16 I hadn't had a girlfriend. FFS.

    When I go out and I'm not with Wifeling I dress somewhat hybrid. Suit jacket, waistcoat, shirt, everything else is femme - women's jeans, sneaks, underwear etc. And I wear more jewellery and often a touch of makeup. But otherwise I appear male.

    I certainly stand out in the small town where I live. 🤷*♀️

    Any confusion or ambiguity hasn't (yet) caused me any trouble. I'd love to present as more fully female from time to time but, things being what they are with my circumstances, those femme touches, I dunno, they soothe my soul in some way.

    Ambiguity is fine, up to a point. That being when one becomes intimate with someone. Some clarity, even about the ambiguity, is needed, if that makes sense?!

    I guess I'm answering your question by saying that, yes, it's often external pressures that force us into specific boxes. Hell, society's so set on labels and boxes that we police ourselves.

    It can be hard to just be 'you' but I've always found it a price worth paying. Select friends know about me as Abbie and they're fine with it, even congratulating me for my bravery in coming out. But their understanding of me is complex anyway. They know me as Iconoclypse first, Chris second and Abbie third. And they can change, depending on which 'me' they're talking to. The ambiguity in my personality leads to different perspectives sometimes.

    Well this went west. Lol. I'ma shut up now. 😁

  6. #6
    Aspiring Member
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    I think when it comes to matching your internal identity of self and external expression finding the place that makes you comfortable is the best way to go. Others may expect a more stereotypical and easily read expression but if that doesn't fit you and you find you are out of your comfort zone then avoid that. It is your life and you can't live it to please other's expectations and still be comfortable. Nothing wrong with trying to meet those expectations, but if it makes you squirmy then don't do it. Ambiguity is not bad, but when someone expects others to be clear and the ambiguity bothers them, then that is their problem and not yours. "All men (and women) are created equal," but that doesn't mean that all men and women are created identical. The number of possible combinations approach infinite.

  7. #7
    Aspiring Member abbiedrake's Avatar
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    What Gretchen said.

    As per usual. 😊

  8. #8
    Junior Member ~Renee~'s Avatar
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    Thelise you need to find the balance that makes you happy. Many here have made that tremendously liberating choice to be who they want to be and exit the door happily. Others struggle with their own self acceptance and desire to be perceived as blending in. Either way the only thing we can conclusively control is our thoughts and opinions. Some here don't give a damn about anyone's opinion and others are forever trapped in their own prison of caring others opinions. There's a lot to be said for either approach and it depends upon each of our own needs. Some care to conform so as to have the maximum social circle with the least disruption in their lives, those who never go out, and others who have never been concerned about fitting in with the general population.

    Yes, that battle of throwing off the yokes of expectations will give you angst because though the choice of expressing ambiguously is revocable to you it's not to those around you. You will have forever altered their perception of you and your presence affects their lives in some respect, hence the psychological damage you mention. I might add "the psychological damage" is their problem and not yours as they are responsible for their own thoughts. I think implicitly we all know this perception change to be true and why so many want to blend in and not be known. Many want to have the liberty to be us without blowing up our male lives as we are all social creatures.

    If you like ambiguity and don't give a damn about others opinions then live as you want. Perhaps your life will help society's acceptance of the ambiguous. If the angst is too much for you right now, then dial things back as you recover from your ended relationship. Living in turmoil isn't good and you will need to find the balance that keeps you happy.

  9. #9
    Senior Member Jean 103's Avatar
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    I find for some it is just too much to wrap their head around, or it is just to much time.

    I do know that I'm treated better when there is no question in my presentation.

    I'm not hiding, blending, or any of that. Im out and live in the real world. I dress to impress my friends. I must be doing something right as I'm popular in my little world.

    Still I have found that people are really accepting if you give them a chance. Others like a roommate that went crazy mellow with time , and some just need a little time, as in more than one encounter.

    Then there are the ones that are like Im ok with you but what about everyone else. Like if we are going out somewhere together for the first time. Once they see that everything is normal around me, that no one cares, that I'm treated just like anyone else, that all goes away.

    Just be yourself, most people are really amazing, if you just give them a chance.

  10. #10
    Female impostornator! docrobbysherry's Avatar
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    Unhappy Don't blame us binary types for your androgynous issues!

    We can't help it!
    I dress all the way or not at all. Because that's how I like my dates to look!

    Personally, I could care less how men or trans present. Because I have no sexual attraction to them.

    However, I have often wondered about androgynous presenting women I've found attractive!

    I believe any male that has issues with gay or effeminate looking men has self doubt/fear issues about himself!
    U can't keep doing the same things over and over and expect to enjoy life to the max. When u try new things, even if they r out of your comfort zone, u may experience new excitement and growth that u never expected.

    Challenge yourself and pursue your passions! When your life clock runs out, you'll have few or NO REGRETS!

  11. #11
    Junior Member Thelise's Avatar
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    Hi Cristy. Yes, stereotypes are poison. A lot of people actually seem happy to fit one, but maybe that's too presumptuous of me.

    Kim, the rumour mill is something that used to terrify me. But I think I'm at so close to zero I don't really care if people find out. I don't really want to confront anyone with news of my CDing, because if feel it would be selfish, but I also don't care if they chance upon it. My neighbour's are so close by I'm sure they can hear me clacking about in my heels.

    Majella, there's other interesting information about this chap I could give that would totally reinforce your point. But of course I won't go that far here.

    No, that's a great post Abbie, thanks. Self policing has to happen doesn't it, otherwise you'll find yourself rendered a pariah in no time. And Gretchen I like your points a lot. Trouble is I've always gotten into strife being unable to distinguish between meeting reasonable expectations and feeling like I'm being manipulated.

    Thanks Renee, I love your whole post. I don't think he was actually that mentally affected by it, he was more like regretful that he ever even gave me time of day. Tried to then paint me as an idiot too, which I know I am, but he didn't have to make it so obvious! There were other students he had similar issues with.

    Hi Jean. You're an inspiration. Maybe I'll get there one day. A circle of friends is not something I really have, but I imagine it would provide a better understanding of myself, rather just sitting around inside my own head.

    Hey Doc. Don't worry I'm not thinking that.

    I'll stop sooking about myself now and shutty....

  12. #12
    Seamstress of Skirts Asew's Avatar
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    As non-binary I love ambiguity in my gender. At this point who cares what they think my sexuality is since I am in a committed relationship and it doesn't matter to anyone outside of that.

  13. #13
    Aspiring Member Cristy2's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Thelise View Post
    Kim, the rumour mill is something that used to terrify me. But I think I'm at so close to zero I don't really care if people find out. I don't really want to confront anyone with news of my CDing, because if feel it would be selfish, but I also don't care if they chance upon it. My neighbour's are so close by I'm sure they can hear me clacking about in my heels.
    Sadly the rumor mill is something that still terrifies me because of the area of town I live in and the whole city in general. The majority are not accepting of the LGBTQ at all and very openly so. I can't wait until I am back on my feet enough to be able to move and put this place in the rear view mirror.

  14. #14
    Junior Member Thelise's Avatar
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    Cristy, your city looks like it has an awesome underground culture. Is it not accepting of different people like us? Or is it just not your thing? Just curious....

  15. #15
    Aspiring Member Cristy2's Avatar
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    I may be pushing the red zone of the forum rules with this statement, but Jacksonville Fl has a lot of the old school back woods rednecks in just about every area of town, some areas worse than others, so there are a very few areas where the LGBTQ is relatively safe, but there are areas where it is extremely dangerous. Unfortunately, most of the north side of town is one of those dangerous areas. You do not want to be outed on the northside.

  16. #16
    Junior Member Thelise's Avatar
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    Well that's really sad and scary. Sounds like you do need to get out. It's all down to our understanding of our own environment. If it feels wrong it probably is!

  17. #17
    Aspiring Member Cristy2's Avatar
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    Exactly, always be aware of your surroundings even in good areas, but yeah, I'm putting Jacksonville in the rear view mirror as soon as I possibly can.

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