Labelling Me

Posted on | February 14, 2014 | 4 Comments

I’ve been thinking about labels again. It’s one of those things I keep coming back to, not least because it impacts so heavily how I perceive, and am perceived by, the world. Labels are everywhere, and pretty much unavoidable.

A lot of people really dislike labels, feeling limited by the boxes they’re placed in. Which is understandable – who wants to be crammed into a musty overused damp square that is nothing like who they really are?

I am somewhat different. I love labels. I embrace them. But I love and embrace them for myself. I choose – and sometimes change – my own labels, selecting and decorating and opening up the boxes that I feel suit me the best. That label over there? That’s one of mine. See how airy and friendly it is? See why I like this box? It’s because I chose it.

I feel that the problem with labels isn’t the labels themselves. Labels are just words which symbolise something larger, and words are – in theory at least – supposed to increase understanding. The problem is when labels are used by one person to identify another, as that’s a shortcut which leads to misunderstandings, not to mention resentment!

That said, it’s damned hard not to label people. Walking down the street I still default to trying to identify the gender of people walking past me. It shouldn’t matter, any more than height or hair colour or shoe style, and yet I still catch myself doing it. They’re snap judgements on who you are – and those snap judgements can trip me right up. How do I avoid it? I can’t. The only thing I can do is recognise and accept what I’ve done, and then (this is the hard bit) put that judgement aside as I interact with you. Because I’d far rather know how you choose to label yourself than stick to my own, probably inaccurate, perceptions.

These are some of the labels I’ve chosen for myself. Some you might pick up as you walk past me. Some you might guess from reading my blog. Some you would only know if I told you. So I’m telling you now.

I’m: fat, happy, kinky, Buffy-fan, slut, childfree, exhibitionist, migraineur, bibliophile, switch, suicide-survivor, pansexual, open, loving, orphan, polyamorous, boss, kiwi, sex-blogger, woman, writer. And label-lover!

I also have a new label. It’s one I’ve been slowly evolving into over the last five years. And it’s one that will have a very big impact on my interactions with the world.

I’ve changed my name. Legally. While I kept my first name (Dee is a contraction of it), my middle and surnames are now ones I have chosen for myself. My old name was cramped, full of baggage and history and grief. My new name is big, spacious, and friendly. It’s mine, picked by me for my own reasons, and able to be shared with the world.

A new label, to add to the rest. A label I love and embrace for myself.

I’m Dee Morgan. It’s lovely to meet you! Tell me, what labels do you choose to use?

Originally written for express magazine online in July 2011.

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Intriguing Reading #77

Posted on | February 6, 2014 | No Comments

My regular roundup of interesting reads, found from all over the place.

On Getting Naked in Antarctica: “Make no mistake: Streaking at the South Pole isn’t an activity to be taken lightly. And it’s not something you do on a whim, after one too many shots of whiskey at Club 90 South. On the contrary, getting naked in Antarctica is a hallowed tradition that requires planning and teamwork.” (Svati Kirsten Narula / The Atlantic)

The Lying Disease: “Because unlike standard trolls, Munchausen by internet trolls infiltrate the “open trusting environments of communication forums—established for the sole purpose of giving support to members facing significant health or psychological problems,” the study says. It’s easy, given the trusting, intimate nature of support groups. They prey on those who are physically sick and, by proxy, emotionally vulnerable. By the time they’re discovered, they know their victims quite well. And when their duplicity is unmasked and that attentive support stops, they attack.” (Cienna Madrid / The Stranger)

No More Stitch-Ups! Developing Media Literacy Through Fat Activist Community Research: ” Fat people, including fat activists, are part of an intersectional genealogy of minorities suffering media misrepresentation and manipulation which shifts according to broader social patterns in scapegoating, stigmatising and stereotyping. Changing how fat activists are depicted by media makers also entails engaging with wider struggles of marginalisation and representation.” (Dr. Charlotte Cooper / Obesity Timebomb)

The Struggle To Find Trans Love: “I certainly do not expect every cis queer woman to swoon over me. And if it were only a small percentage of cis dykes who were not interested in trans women at all, I would write it off as simply a matter of personal preference. But this not a minor problem—it is systemic; it is a predominant sentiment in queer women’s communities. And when the overwhelming majority of cis dykes date and fuck cis women, but are not open to, or are even turned off by, the idea of dating or fucking trans women, how is that not transphobic?” (Julia Serano / The Daily Beast)

Tantric Misogyny: or, how I learned to stop worrying and love the yoni: “Oh my. A sex expert who had to have the term cisgendered explained to him. Who had clearly never butted up against the term “privilege” in his career. However, it was the audience comments that really made me despair for humanity. One woman said that she didn’t know what I was talking about, that she’d never experienced any sexism in her everyday and didn’t see any examples of sexism or misogyny (not that she used that word) in the media. The old man (also a tantric massage dudebro) who suggested some esoteric rubbish that seemed to boil down to sexism being a construct of people too shallow to rise above it and not let it affect them.” (Glitter and Spite)

Bad Sex Media Bingo

Bad Sex Media Bingo (click through to site for explanations about each square)

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Treasured Property

Posted on | January 31, 2014 | 3 Comments

Every January for the last few years, m’Lady and I have worked together on my Title Deed, the document which confirms the owner/property dynamic of our relationship, and the limits we’ve agreed to set upon it. We’ve gone through it, reviewing each section and clause, discussing what’s in the document and what’s not – what we’ve found to work (and not work) over the previous year.

The very first document, signed in January 2012, took us nearly eight months to put together. January was a time for finalising, checking, assurances that this was what I wanted, what ey wanted as well.

Last year, January 2013, was a time for many additions – for the sections we’d realised belatedly were necessary and useful. It was also the time for review, for changes and alterations, as we discovered what had worked and what had not. As a living document, like our living relationship, it was right and good to be able to show it reflecting ourselves.

This year, January 2014, we simplified. Some clauses we combined, others we removed altogether. We like knowing that our previous versions are out there to be viewed and compared; they’re not lost into a memory hole, but are a guide and a trail. As always, we discussed language, revised statements, and occasionally reordered.

So once again, on the anniversary of our initial relationship, we have re-signed my Title Deed . The discussions were, as always, made at the meta level; that is, not within the dynamic but within our relationship, with respect and honesty.

(You can see and compare the previous title deeds here – Title Deed 2012 and Title Deed 2013)

Click each page to view it larger, if you wish.

Title Deed 2014 pg 1

The blackened sections are to protect legal names.

My hard limits (and desires) are in a 4 sectioned checklist – you can access and download the template here.

Title Deed 2014 pg 2There were considerable changes in this section – #10 is a combination of two clauses from the previous year, as is #11, and previously my collar was the primary symbol while my ear-tag was secondary. This has now changed.

It is also to be noted that review is to be done annually, not six-monthly – this is because that’s how often we were actually doing it :)

Title Deed 2014 pg 3

I love m’Lady very much, and had no hesitation about renewing this document with em – but it’s worth noting that there was barely any clause that we didn’t discuss and check. Between us, we had questions and queries, things to check and clarify. And that’s a good thing – we were able to communicate about changes, language we were unsure of, and things that might be better off gone or altered.

Happy anniversary, my beloved owner. I feel absolutely treasured as your property, your fuckcow, your slut and your partner. Thank you for cherishing me and taking such good care of me. Here’s to the next year, and many after!

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Nervewracking Scavenge

Posted on | January 29, 2014 | 11 Comments

I really enjoy finding and knocking off Scavenger Hunt locations – I keep a long list on my phone of various ones I hope to do, and I always have my camera with me in my bag. (It helps that I’m happy to take photos of myself by myself, although I have a variety of friends and lovers who enjoy being partners in crime!) And while I frequently get comments on posts about how brave I must have been to get this spot or that location, it’s rare that I find it particularly scary or difficult; usually it’s about timing and determination.

The aquarium was different.

Kelly Tarlton’s is the aquarium in Auckland, and it’s a tourist destination for both Kiwis and international visitors. I’ve been to it a number of times with friends and extended family, and when Delilah and her family were here I was happy to go with them – the Auntie Dee detached division. It’s quite a different experience to attend with young children, as opposed to adults: seeing it through excitable eyes was pretty awesome, and I had a blast, even as I was tired out extra-quickly.

The whole time that we were there I was hopeful I could find a spot and take a scavenger photo – I’d even dressed for it! But there were kids and security cameras everywhere, and the last thing I wanted to do was upset a child or get myself kicked out. Discretion was what I needed.

We spent a lot of time with the penguins:

curvaceousdee penguins kellytarltons

Had fun pretending to be eaten by a giant shark:

curvaceous dee shark

Watched the live sharks being fed; saw the stingrays floating around; sat on a giant turtle (in the toy area); oohed and aahed at the many seahorses; were amazed at the fish of all descriptions, and generally had a lot of excitable fun.

I was beginning to despair of finding a spot where I could get a photo. And then, just before the gift shop at the end, I saw them: large upright aquariums leading to the seahorse rooms – with just enough space behind them so you could walk around to see the other side (or go around the back and take a photo). The family had frayed into the gift shop one way and seahorses the other. Still, there were people coming and going all the time. Could I do it? I was nervous as hell.

Still, it was now or never.  I took a deep breath, looked around and crossed my fingers, then slipped around to the back of the aquariums. I desperately hoped my pull-down-top-hold-out-camera-take-photo plan would work.

I took the first picture, and glanced down at the camera. I’d missed, dammit – all I could see was my throat. I looked around and still the coast was clear. Time to try again. Please please please let this one be in frame …

It was!

curvaceousdee boob flash

I pulled my top back up and scurried around to the main walkway. The timing was tight – people were just beginning to walk through, and a few looked at me funny. Yikes!

As a treat for my success I asked Delilah to take a photo of me with the giant stuffed penguin toys, in the gift shop – and then whispered in her ear what I’d just managed. She was gratifyingly impressed. I was pretty impressed myself. What a day!

curvaceousdee penguin

**

I was on quite a high after knocking off that location. But boy was I knackered!

Wicked Wednesday

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Rope

Posted on | January 24, 2014 | 3 Comments

This article was originally written for express magazine online in June 2011. It was written for those without much rope experience. All photos (so far as I can recall) were taken by Kiana at various workshops and play parties.

It’s marvellously versatile, rope. Sure, you can use it for securing the load on your trailer, but it’s a hell of a lot more exciting winding it around limbs, across skin, and creating patterns that you know can stay impressed on flesh for hours later.

Yes, I get tied up with rope – and I quite enjoy doing the tying as well!

If the only rope you’re familiar with is rough scratchy nylon from the hardware store, I don’t blame you for being a tad incredulous. But different rope has different purposes, and only some is suitable – not to mention safe – for bondage.

curvaceousdee cotton bondage

In my wardrobe I have a bag that’s gradually become stuffed with chained rope – all of which has been used at one time or another. I have fat white mariners rope, which is a little impractical for bondage, but oh so pretty wrapped around my belly and legs. There’s a long length of heavy hemp rope which I stretched and conditioned myself, perfect for karadas (body rope harnesses). Soft cotton rope that started life as curtain sash cord, used for gags, cuffs, and for tying most effectively to bedheads. Dyed cotton rope. Narrow kangaroo thong. Hemp string.

Kept with my rope are safety shears, because there’s always a possibility that the person tied up needs to be released immediately. While I’ve never had to use them for that purpose, I would never play without them handy. A big part of BDSM is being safe, sane and consensual – and a big part of safe is being able to get a person free swiftly if necessary.

curvaceous dee bondage

Not everyone can see the appeal of rope. That’s just fine – not everyone has to like the same things! But I like it for a number of reasons. For the feeling of constriction as it tightens around me. For the control that the person doing the tying can exert – making a rope harness with a handle at the back, or knotting a crotch rope so it presses in just the right spot. The obvious one – for creating the kind of bondage that leaves a person vulnerable to wicked teasing, tickling, and tormenting as they are helpless in their bindings. But it also appeals because of the sense of power that I have when wearing it.

You’d think that power would be in the hands of the person doing the rope bondage, not the person receiving it. And you’d be right – at least the obvious kind of power. But being the one to wear it also has a power, which is harder to define.

curvaceous dee kangaroo thong

Have you ever gone out wearing no underwear? Or to a supermarket with a vibrator tucked into your knickers? Wearing rope is a little like that. Knowledge that you’re societally transgressive, that you’re experiencing something not everyone has the opportunity to. Knowing that there are knots and bights wrapped across you, hidden beneath clothing. Going to the mall wrapped just so, and knowing that no one but my partner was aware was an amazingly hot experience, and one with no need to shock unconsenting passers-by, either.

So yes, I love playing with rope. It’s an experience unlike any other. Why not give it a go yourself, sometime?

curvaceousdee rope

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Auctioned

Posted on | January 22, 2014 | 7 Comments

The story below was written by m’Lady Tethys as a birthday gift for me – I was thrilled to wake up and find it waiting for me in my inbox, along with an audio clip where ey read it aloud to me (as you can probably imagine, I wanked my brains out listening to it). It is with permission and with great pleasure that I share the words with you now, after keeping it to myself for a month.

The crowd this year was even larger. Not that this was a surprise; word had got around about a new star on the scene, and this was to be her first public showing. The private sessions were being discussed enthusiastically – about how she was prime fuckmeat, about how she could easily take all that people could give her and more, about how her fuckholes were a delight to any tongues, cocks, fingers or hands that used them. The talk had whetted the appetites of some, and stoked the fires of curiosity in others.

The general air of impatience within the crowd turned to excitement, as the auctioneer climbed the steps of the circular presentation platform and strode into its centre. She smiled and waved to various points of the compass, then held up her hands for silence. The chatter of the crowd dissipated rapidly.

“Thank you all for coming today. I know you’re all excited to see what’s on offer, and I can tell you, I’m certainly excited as well! We have flesh you’ll be more than delighted to see, feel, use and be serviced by. You can be confident our staff have personally and thoroughly pre-screened the fuckmeat to ensure it meets the high standards you’ve come to expect from us. Let’s get started!”

Whore cow number 1 of Lamdba Farm waited with her owner at the foot of the presentation platform steps. She was, of course, entirely naked but for her collar, bell and ownership tag. Her owner could not only smell eir property’s cunt juices, but could actually see them running down the inside of her thighs. This was, of course, precisely why she was such a wonderful whore cow, and why she was in such demand – she not only wanted to be naked and exposed and available for use by others and the profit and pleasure of her owner, she needed it, and her physical responses demonstrated that clearly.

Still, her owner could sense an air of nervousness to her, and began gently stroking her back. “Relax, my fuckholes. Just be your gorgeous beautiful self, and everything will be fine.” She nodded silently, and tilted her head onto her owner’s shoulder.

The auctioning of the other two pieces of fuckmeat seemed to drag on and on interminably; but finally, it became her turn. A staff member motioned to her owner: “You’re up.”

She mounted the steps slowly, her proud owner following her, and then the two of them made their way to the centre of the stage. The auctioneer spoke.

“I know this is the moment many of you here have been waiting for. I present to you, whore cow number 1, of Lambda Farm!”

Whore cow number 1 looked out across the crowd, and noticed some people were quite shamelessly stroking various parts of their bodies at the sight of her. Comments were being exchanged, and though she couldn’t hear what was being said, the smiles and lecherous grins involved gave her some idea of the thoughts on people’s minds. The auctioneer spoke again.

“Bidding will start at 100 credits. Though this amount is obviously noticeably higher than the other starting prices today, our research has determined that anything less would not be fitting for such quality. So, 100 credits. Do I hear more? 110, I have 110. 130, I have 130 ….”

Her owner smiled. There was something special about these service auctions. Whoring out eir property at fixed rates to individuals and groups was certainly satisfying – not to mention arousing – but being able to see people compete for access to eir property, and compete by being willing to put down hard credits? That was more than gratifying.

“180, 180 …. 200! I have 200 ….”

Hearing the bid price reach double its starting value was too much; she spontaneously orgasmed, her legs buckling underneath her, cunt milk visibly squirting onto the platform floor in long pulses. Her owner immediately went to support her, and she leaned on em gratefully as she bellowed in her pleasure.

The bidding suddenly became even more enthusiastic.

“220! 250! 290! 300!”

A cheer went up each time the bid rose. The crowd itself seemed to have become a single organism straining towards orgasm, eager to reach a point of satisfied completion.

“370! Do I hear more than 370? More than 370? Anyone?”

The crowd went quiet, expectant.

“Going once. Going twice …. Sold! Sold to number 92 for 370 credits, a new record!”

The crowd erupted into a cacophony of yelling, whistling, howling and clapping. Whore cow number 1 visibly orgasmed again, ecstatic at being so publicly recognised as such exceptional fuckmeat.

Her owner smiled broadly, and scanned through the list of bidders. Number 92 …. The Drake Consortium. A group whose depravity was legendary. Organisers of events that went for days at a time. A group whose members made use of all sorts of substances to push their own bodies to their limits, all the better to take their pleasure from each others’ bodies and anyone else in their orbit. Hedonists who would have no qualms whatsoever about using whore cow number 1 of Lambda Farm thoroughly, inside and out, leaving marks and bruising that would last for weeks, not mere days.

Oh yes, this was going to be a wonderful experience indeed.

**

Thank you, m’Lady, for such a delicious birthday story! 

Wicked Wednesday

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e[lust] #54

Posted on | January 20, 2014 | No Comments

Elustheader Photo courtesy of Gritty Woman

Welcome to e[lust] - The only place where the smartest and hottest sex bloggers are featured under one roof every month. Whether you’re looking for sex journalism, erotic writing, relationship advice or kinky discussions it’ll be here at e[lust]. Want to be included in e[lust] #55? Start with the rules, come back February 1st to submit something and subscribe to the RSS feed for updates!

~ This Month’s Top Three Posts ~

How children will break UK Internet filters.
Submissive, Not Passive
When Sex and Disabilities Collide

~ Featured Post (Molly’s Picks) ~

Tribute to a Selfie
The Pawn

~ Readers Choice from Sexbytes ~

*You really should consider adding your popular posts here too*

Read more

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Intriguing Reading #76

Posted on | January 14, 2014 | No Comments

My regular roundup of interesting reads, found from all over the place.

Not in my backyard: who wants a brothel as a neighbour?: “But underlying all of these approaches is an ongoing assumption that there is something inherently problematic and undesirable about brothels.” (Dr. Penny Crofts / The Conversation)

Poly, Not Pagan, and Proud: “Obviously, there are good reasons for me to worry that I won’t be able to build a community in poly world if my choices involve a disproportionate number of pagans. I find such practices culturally unappealing. But not only does paganism not speak to me, I feel on guard against it and other New-Age forms of worship that draw in superficial and often corrupting ways on the traditions of indigenous and other peoples from around the world.” (The Critical Polyamorist)

Why Representations of Women and Girls Can’t Be Slut-Shamed: “But fictional characters do not have any agency. They are fictional, designed by corporations who are invested in the sexualization and objectification of females, as the APA has reported. Slamming critics for failing to support fictitious characters’ “choices” is conflating fantasy with reality.” (Rebecca Hains)

The Big, Fat Polyamorous Asexual Post: “Given that polyamory is about wanting and being capable of having more than romantic/emotionally significant relationship at the same time, it should be easy to understand that some asexuals are polyamorous. Many asexuals experience romantic attraction. Polyamorous asexuals are no more likely to be okay with having sex than monogamous or aromantic asexuals, because polyamory is not just about sex, but they can want more than one romantic relationship.” (The Thinking Asexual)

Information Styles and “Topping from the Bottom”: “We each have the right to be the person we want to be. We have the right to be Submissive Fetishists (Sir, may I lick your boot?) or Dominant Fetishists (Get your ass over here Boy so that I can lick your boot.) We can be Primal Switches (wrestling each other to the ground for either Top/Bottom control or Dominant/Submissive control… or both), or Primal Neutral-Neutral (we are animals, walking side by side through this concrete jungle.) We can be Tops into caning (I will hit you with precision), or Dominants into caning (I will hit you to assert my power.) We can be… ourselves.” (Lee Harrington)

Dear Cosmo Writer: I Am Not Your Problem: ” I can, however, have energy orgasms by giving head, and I can also have orgasms by giving head and jerking myself off, or giving head and getting someone else to jerk me off, or (heaven forbid!) giving head and getting head at the same time…  which leads me to my overall point.  I don’t think that this particular writer is actually angry that there are women who say they like giving blowjobs.  I don’t think that she honestly believes that I am her problem.  And I don’t even think that I am her key complaint.  I think her main complaint is that in heteronormative sexual encounters, blowjobs are expected and cunnilingus is not.” (Slut, PhD)

Kristina Rose X Dave Naz X EMS #12 from Eric Minh Swenson

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Under the Street Light

Posted on | January 12, 2014 | 16 Comments

curvaceousdee westernpark auckland

“Which one is better?” I called out to Delilah, having already flung my bag and cardigan to the ground. “This one here, or that one over there? And do we get the mosaic in the shot?”

The two of us were at Western Park in Ponsonby on a brisk August evening. Hours earlier we’d parked at very nearly the same spot, walked all the way up Karangahape Road and shopped at all the sex toy shops, visited a sex cinema and a cruise club, had some dinner and taken some fantastic Scavenger Hunt photos (one of which is yet to come). Now, pretty much knackered, these lamps simply begged to be used. What was one more stop before we dropped?

curvaceous dee westernpark auckland

“The lamp on the left, I think.” Delilah decided. “No, my left! I can’t get the mosaic but I can get the Sky Tower behind you.” That worked for me, and I posed prettily, waiting for random pedestrians to wander past, and wondering how we’d time it with the Ponsonby Road traffic driving by. We were relatively near an intersection – quite near where the bleachers had been for watching the Pride parade actually – so perhaps when the lights were right?

curvaceousdee skytower auckland breasts

I watched the traffic while Delilah kept her hand on the button. “Nearly … nearly … now!” I lifted my top and flashed while the camera did the same.

“Got it!” she crowed. We grinned and hugged, then peered at the camera display. “It looks good, I think. There’s tits, anyway.”

Really, what else do you want? Yeah, it’s blurry, as I discovered later, but we were pretty blurry too at that point – and we were having a blast. And doesn’t the Sky Tower truly look terrific!

**

Come visit again soon, lovely Delilah :)

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Gender Non-Binary

Posted on | January 10, 2014 | 4 Comments

I’m in love with someone who doesn’t fit the so-called gender binary. I’m in love with someone who has breasts and a penis, wears their hair long and occasionally sports a goatee, who prefers to be in skirts but pairs them with stompy boots. Are they simply a woman? No. Are they simply a man? No. Am I attracted to them? Absolutely.

Gender is not a binary – even though media and social perceptions reinforce it every day.

It’s very easy to not question gender. Everywhere you look you see the same two choices: male and female. Birthday cards are for boys and girls, surveys ask if you’re M or F, public bathrooms very nearly always only give you only two choices, and it’s assumed that you’re attracted either to men or to women (or that if you’re attracted to both, that you’re bisexual. Pansexual as a concept? Fuhgeddaboudit).

Why do we insist on the either-or? There’s a whole galaxy of genders, with feminine and masculine being just two choices out of many.

Let’s backtrack a bit. You’re born with certain characteristics that are regarded as sexual. These are certain physical and physiological patterns which are influenced by genetics (including chromosomes) and hormones in a variety of ways. However, Western society chooses to define ‘sex’ based simply on one’s genitalia or one’s X/Y chromosome combination. Even so, this still doesn’t create a binary, because there are male, female, and intersex (intersex makes up approximately 1% of all births).

Now gender is not the same as sex. The experiences of many SGD people is that for them gender, their personal sense of gender, and the perceptions that other people have of their gender illustrate that the whole thing is much more complicated that it’s often been assumed to be.

My gender identity is pretty simple. I was born with female sex characteristics, and I regard my gender as cis-female. While I don’t wear make-up, rarely wear heels, and never hide the hair in my armpits, I comfortably consider myself a woman. While I spend a lot of time fighting the media perception of what it is to be feminine, female fits my sense of self.

My beloved’s gender identity is more complex. Ey ascribes to the gender non-binary, being strongly drawn to both male and female characteristics in emself. But how ey and eir partners views em does not mean that the general public gets it. Often they feel the need to take obvious characteristics (like that goatee) and use it to determine the gender of the person they’re looking at. You have a beard? You must be male.

Way to be challenging, society. Who says you get to determine someone else’s gender – or their gender identity – for them? What gives you the right?

One way of combating this insistence on the binary is to use gender-neutral pronouns (ey, em, eir are the preference for my beloved) rather than him/her, he/she. And its not the easiest thing, getting the hang of them. While I regularly get it wrong and have to correct myself, I am trying. And after 30+ years of only having ‘he’ and ‘she’ to deal with, adding a ‘ey’ into the mix can take some work. It’s totally worth it, though.

In a galaxy of genders there are many, many options. I know my choice. I know eirs. Do you know yours?

Originally written for express magazine online in May 2011, after considerable discussion with and assistance from m’Lady Tethys. The article above is a slightly revised version for 2014.

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