So I’m about to be “outed” as born-into-a-female body at school. At the moment, I’m still floating in closet limbo, somewhere between being out and closeted, that is, in relation to my biological sex. As I have mentioned in previous posts, the people I talk with know that I was born into a female body but I identify as genderqueer. And now, one of my teachers knows as well.
So here’s the story, I am on the student council as a representative for my class. The first meeting was last week and I ended up becoming chairman of the board for the student council as well. Pretty fancy, eh? In any case, the teacher that will be outing me soon, tick tock, tick tock… also attends the student council meetings because she is a student advisor. She also happened to be teaching my class the day after the student council meeting and when she wanted to introduce me in class as chairman of the board, she started fumbling around and using my name over and over again (instead of a pronoun). I noticed this right away as normally my teachers just use masculine pronouns for me without skipping a beat. So then when she pulled me aside after class, I knew she was going to ask me about my genderqueer-osity. She took me to an office, closed the door and said that she saw my CPR number (if you are non-Dane, a CPR number is your social security number and it is gender specific – in the binary sense). She looked a little confused and said, you have a female CPR number. I replied yes, I do. I think at this point, she was still wondering if perhaps my CPR number was a mistake. She then asked about which pronouns I would prefer when she referred to me in class and I told her she was welcome to use female pronouns but that I didn’t really mind either way. I started to explain to her that it was actually a tough choice for me because as a cis-male I gain status so not only am I given more respect, I am also able to combat sexist remarks made by my classmates. On the other hand, I would like to be a role model for the cis-females in my class because they are so few. I want to lead the way and show that a person born into a female body can be a leader and be just as good at maths, programming, etc. as a cis-male. I have to give my teacher props here, she handled this perfectly by taking me aside and asking which pronouns to use in relation to myself. However, towards the end of the conversation, I mentioned again that she was welcome to use female pronouns for me and she said “of course, you are a girl”. WHOA, slow your roll teach, you were doing so well! This remark made the queer avenger in me spring into action and I went off on a bit of a tangent about heteronormativity and how none of my other classmates were to be “outed”, I could see that this was a bit beyond her scope of knowledge as she looked a bit frightened.
What to do now? Well, at the moment, I am sitting back and waiting for her to out me as born-into-a-female body and then see how my classmates react. I’m sure the aftermath will warrant another blog post.
One more thing to mention, after our conversation, I have decided that I am going to ask her if she could arrange that I present heteronormativity and LGBT awareness at an upcoming teacher meeting. So all my queerlings, if you have suggestions for good things to mention or exercises I could do with the teachers, I would happy to hear them!