[SAFESPACE] LGBTIQQA Thread - Queer Support!

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Re: [SAFESPACE] LGBTIQQ Thread - Queer Support!

Postby Jessica » Mon Jan 11, 2010 2:09 pm UTC

*hug for crickets* I'm not sure, but maybe my girlfriend can help you?

Also: I'm not sure if the numbers are as different between trans men and trans women anymore. I know they used to be but, I remember hearing something about the numbers becoming closer over the past 10 (or 5) years.
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Re: [SAFESPACE] LGBTIQQ Thread - Queer Support!

Postby Wyvern » Mon Jan 11, 2010 3:20 pm UTC

[Trigger Warning]
Spoiler:
I don't know how many of the thread's denizens frequent the blog Questioning Transphobia, but a recent post over there just hit home. So much that I'm crying and shaking and trying very hard not to vomit.

Just.... what the hell? Given that bit of power, her own family goes and tries to erase the best four years of her life, to erase her. just like that. What a fucking nightmare. I can't imagine anything more hellish.

The scary thing is that it isn't much of a stretch to see this happening to myself. Hell, This has already happened to a lesser extent to someone I know - stuck in a hospital with nurses and doctors and everything calling him the wrong name and using wrong pronouns.... and he was up and awake and talking to them even! ugh.... It's awful to even think about.

I just needed to be able to talk about this, Sorry if I've upset anyone. :(

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Re: [SAFESPACE] LGBTIQQ Thread - Queer Support!

Postby Jessica » Mon Jan 11, 2010 5:30 pm UTC

That makes me want to cry. It makes me angry. It makes me frustrated and disgusted.
And it makes me want to reproduce the article for those who may not be able to see it.
Spoiler:
is a dream a lie if it don’t come true / or is it something worse wrote:My dears, you know who I am. Let’s dispense with the formalities.

I want you to promise me something.

First, I’d like to explain why. As per often, I’m going to give you a trigger warning first–I’m not sure what to call it except that this will be upsetting, so take care of yourselves. I am not, I stress, kidding. It has taken me weeks to get this written because my flesh keeps crawling off and, the first few times I tried, I found myself completely inarticulate. If you know me in person–especially if you’re close to the woman in this story–please just…consider not reading at all, because you don’t need to be any more upset.

Five years ago, I met a younger trans woman, not out yet, just coming to terms with herself, and I decided to be our college’s welcoming committee. I took her aside, offered resources and community connections, and otherwise let her know I would be around if she ever needed anything, even just to talk things out with someone who might understand. She was skinny, awkward, tentative, and sweet, and I wanted very much to give her a helping hand I’d lacked at her age, but in the end, she had more clarity about herself than I had. She pulled herself together, let the important people in her life know, and moved forward more decisively than I would have dreamed at eighteen. She had good friends, her family was confused but adjusting, and I knew she would be fine.

Let’s call her Melissa–not because I want to take away another woman’s name, but for the sake of her privacy and that of her loved ones.

Melissa and I never managed to be close, in the end; we had nothing much in common beyond being young trans women at the same school, and even less once we graduated. She was an irreligious libertarian, and I was a socialist looking at seminary; she struggled with the concept of empathy, with which I was overburdened. She was confused as to why I had reached out, presuming to help, and only came to me every few months, when she needed advice on where to find a decent doctor, where to get affordable hormone prescriptions, how to go about the process of legal name change. I offered the information as best I could, and she took it and didn’t really ever say thank you, and that was okay. We were just different people, getting needs met, and we were not the kind of friends I would have liked to be. Her family came around. She had good, caring friends around her, a job, a safe place to live, and she didn’t need anything from me, which was the best possible outcome. She was dating and working out and doing her legal paperwork and she was going to be okay.

A little while ago, Melissa was crossing the street in front of her apartment with her roommate, bringing home groceries late at night from the store right across the way. They were struck by a car in the crosswalk in what appears to have been an innocent, freak accident. Melissa’s roommate was killed instantly. She, because there was an ambulance less than a block away at the time, made it to the hospital with a shattered leg, head injuries, and Gods know what else, comatose.

I didn’t know, when I heard Melissa’s roommate was killed on the morning news, because the news said she’d been with a man, and my first thought was oh, God, is Melissa okay, does she know what happened, she must be so worried. I left a couple of voice messages, but couldn’t get through, and it was only once I saw a report with Melissa’s old name on it that it hit me: there was not a man hit in that accident. She was comatose, with friends there, and family on the way. The prognosis was very, very bad, like “we don’t think she’ll make it till morning” bad.

She made it till morning. And the next night. And the next. We all started passing around updates of how she was doing and taking time to mourn the schoolmate who hadn’t made it. Family arrived, connected with each other, and everyone took a few deep breaths. Melissa started improving, against expectations–eyes opening, snapping fingers when asked, responding in small ways to the people present though she was semiconscious at best and could not move. They made plans to fix her leg and skull and there was talk of moving her to a specialist facility closer to home, one with real support for people recovering from comas, and against all odds she was fighting. It should have been no surprise: she was always a fighter. She was going to be okay.

I didn’t visit. I’m not proud of it, but I was overwhelmed, and was never close to her. I trusted people she would have really wanted there to tell me how she was doing. I went to work, went about my business, went to my comfortable bed in my warm safe home, and she was moved to a newer, better facility that was going to bring her back from the brink of oblivion, and it was all going to be okay. I told myself that over and over, and did my best to ignore the awful, awful feeling in the pit of my stomach. I’d been trying to keep an eye on the future happiness of this woman since she was a teenager. I’d fancied myself some kind of distant big sister, or fairy godmother, or something else nonsensical. I’d thought for some reason that somehow, in this world of all worlds, she’d be okay.

The message came through from her family once she was far away: they were changing up some of the treatment protocols, for Melissa’s sake. It was going to be confusing for her new caregivers to deal with a woman’s name and pronouns while they had to take care of a “male body,” see. This supposedly male body had been on hormones for years. This male body was one with obvious hips and breasts, with no facial hair, with hair past the shoulders before they shaved it all off, with the effects of years of toning and athleticism and medical care shaping it into one that nobody on the street assumed was anything but a cis woman’s. But there was a penis, and that was enough. Enough to override everything else about the last four years of her life. Obviously.

So they were instructing caregivers to call her by her old name, call her “he,” because otherwise it would just be too confusing to explain. They took her off the transitioning medical regimen she’d been on and started talking about memory reconstruction. Her memory would be heavily damaged because of the injuries to her brain, they said. There would have to be a lot of recovery, and it would just be confusing to her to bring up her transitioned life. She’d been a boy with another name for eighteen years, right? Wasn’t that who she really was, at the core? Wouldn’t that be more normal to her? Wouldn’t she just be better served by rebuilding her from the ground up, from the beginning, with the memories that seemed more normal? Maybe if she recovered significantly, if she recovered enough memory and motor function and consciousness, they could start bringing up her transitioned life, but otherwise, they said, she didn’t need to be confused by all of that. The four years of life she’d found worthwhile could just be wiped away like a bad dream, treated as confusion when she woke up, if she woke up, and they could rebuild her on terms that made sense.

They had ultimate power over her–her body, her brain, everything. She was disabled, and couldn’t speak for herself, and couldn’t express her own preferences, and they were next of kin, and they knew best, and the authority for medical decisions was in their hands. They loved her more than anyone, and had her best interests in mind, and were just looking to her recovery, just listening to the doctors.

And if she woke up as from a deep sleep, she’d wake up into a world where her best friend was dead, where her body had been forcibly edited back to its pre-transition state and given a few more years of the influence of testosterone to boot, where her memory and self were hazy and confusing and nobody was calling her by the right name and pronouns, they were in fact pretending four years of her life, the four years she finally got to be honest and true to herself, those had never happened, and shh, she’s just confused, shhhh, calm down, let’s work on fixing your memory some more.

If she was–as many people deemed unconscious, or low-functioning, or unaware by medical professionals, as many many people with disabilities who can’t communicate the “right way” are–aware in any way of what was going on, laying there helpless and voiceless while her body and life and mind were edited and mutilated by loving people, wise professional people in complete control…I actually can’t finish that sentence, because I am shuddering too hard, because I have a hard time imagining a real scenario closer to Hell.

This is not an unusual scenario. It happens all the time, and in worse, far worse, forms. This is still practically standard in the history of how people with disabilities are get violated, and the intersection with trans status only magnifies it. If I got into a car accident tomorrow and fell into a coma, it could happen to me–I can’t marry legally, and my parents who are not part of my life could walk into the hospital and have my partner removed and do pretty much whatever they please with me, a possibility that gives me dry-heaving panic attacks. There is pretty much nothing I can do for Melissa, except what she is doing for herself: since the beginning of the new treatment regimen, all of her improbable recovery has disappeared, and the doctors are at a loss to explain why she is slipping away again, withdrawing further away than before, and won’t come back when they call what they think is her name. They are now bracing for what has become the inevitable.

What I am doing is this: learning the law. I went to a sympathetic lawyer to make sure I would get what I was working on absolutely airtight. I discussed all this with my partner, with close friends and chosen family, and I am having legal documents drawn up to make sure that the people making decisions for me if I cannot are people I trust completely to make the decisions I would want made. I can’t afford it, but I’m making time and budget for it, because the alternative is no longer unthinkable; it’s right there, staring me in the face. I am having those conversations and I am getting them down in writing, notarized, filed, and copied, and I am going to carry a copy everywhere, and so is my partner, so this never, ever happens to me. And I am spreading the word so it doesn’t happen to anyone else.

This is what I want you to promise–me, yourself, someone you care about. Have these conversations. Be aware of these issues and educate yourself. Learn your local laws and get legal documents drawn up. Please. If you can afford a lawyer, hire one. If you cannot, do some research online or at the library. Get this done and get it ironclad.

Do it as soon as you possibly can. I don’t care if you’re young and able-bodied and well-to-do, I don’t care about your operative status or your assumptions about the people in your life. You know what, do this if you’re cis, too. Think about this, and how it affects the trans people you know, and whether or not a twenty-three-year-old cis woman in a coma would be physically altered and have her memory edited just because her family thought she should have been a man and she couldn’t speak for herself. Recognize that, but do this for yourself, too, because anything is possible. Make this explicit. Figure out what your wishes are about your care, write them down, and share them with people you trust, and then make them official, because you cannot know what will happen tomorrow. You cannot know that you won’t be struck down at random by a sober driver in the crosswalk in front of your apartment. You just can’t.

Do this. Promise. Please.
doogly wrote:On a scale of Mr Rogers to Fascism, how mean do you think we're being?
Belial wrote:My goal is to be the best brain infection any of you have ever had.

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Re: [SAFESPACE] LGBTIQQ Thread - Queer Support!

Postby abitha » Mon Jan 11, 2010 5:46 pm UTC

poxic wrote:Transmen are less common than transwomen, which could explain part of the disparity in surgical knowledge. (Kidney transplants are generally the most successful transplant operations because they're performed most often.) There could be social factors as well, though I feel unqualified to guess at them.


I believe that there are also more technical difficulties with performing FtM surgery than MtF - i.e. it's relatively more easy to remove a penis and scrotum and construct a vagina and breasts, than it is to construct a functioning penis. That's something of an oversimplification and it's certainly not a subject i've studied in any detail, but i think that's the case anyway!

On an unrelated subject, a friend of mine posted this on facebook earlier today, and we had a bit of a discussion about it:
asexual_image.php.gif
asexual_image.php.gif (1.72 KiB) Viewed 6954 times

It's supposed to be a symbol for 'asexual', presumably created by analogy from symbols like two overlapping 'male' or 'female' circles to represent gays or lesbians. I don't think it's a very good representation for this (and i don't think my friend did either), but we couldn't think of a good way of symbolising asexuality (or bi- or pan-sexuality for that matter). One possibility might be a simple circle, or two overlapping circles, but that seems to conflate asexuality with non-genderedness. Any thoughts?

Edited to add: Just read that article you posted, wyvern. Fuck, how horrible. Here is one future doctor who will try to fight against that kind of thing, but i can't speak for my colleagues, unfortunately! :(
Last edited by abitha on Mon Jan 11, 2010 5:55 pm UTC, edited 1 time in total.

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Re: [SAFESPACE] LGBTIQQ Thread - Queer Support!

Postby Jessica » Mon Jan 11, 2010 5:53 pm UTC

yeah... that seems like a pretty bad asexual symbol...
doogly wrote:On a scale of Mr Rogers to Fascism, how mean do you think we're being?
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Re: [SAFESPACE] LGBTIQQ Thread - Queer Support!

Postby Ubik » Mon Jan 11, 2010 6:03 pm UTC

What came immediately to my mind is that maybe asexuality could be represented by two circles not touching each other, but it might give an idea of a sort of complete detachment, so it doesn't sound good. A larger circle surrounding another circle could work for pansexuality, though. It's meaning would be that there is no specific direction (or several specific directions) in which the person tends to be attracted to.

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Re: [SAFESPACE] LGBTIQQ Thread - Queer Support!

Postby Jessica » Mon Jan 11, 2010 6:07 pm UTC

I'm actually thinking that this would make a good symbol
Image
doogly wrote:On a scale of Mr Rogers to Fascism, how mean do you think we're being?
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Re: [SAFESPACE] LGBTIQQ Thread - Queer Support!

Postby Wyvern » Mon Jan 11, 2010 6:25 pm UTC

I had been under the impression that the upside down triangle was the commonly accepted asexual symbol. Here it is from the Asexual Deviants page on DA:
Spoiler:
Image

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Re: [SAFESPACE] LGBTIQQ Thread - Queer Support!

Postby abitha » Mon Jan 11, 2010 6:58 pm UTC

Yes, my friend mentioned that one - her comment on it was
It's a bit too depressingly grey and partially complete, which does rather give off all the wrong connotations. Yuck.


She also pointed out that it's organisation-specific, being the symbol of AVEN.

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Re: [SAFESPACE] LGBTIQQ Thread - Queer Support!

Postby Wyvern » Mon Jan 11, 2010 7:07 pm UTC

abitha wrote:Yes, my friend mentioned that one - her comment on it was
It's a bit too depressingly grey and partially complete, which does rather give off all the wrong connotations. Yuck.


She also pointed out that it's organisation-specific, being the symbol of AVEN.

Yeah, I agree. I can't say I like it much myself. It is pretty bland. I like it better when It's purple. (But then it's still AVEN-specific, hrrmmm....)

Now that I think about it, coming up with a symbol for any sexuality seems difficult, since there only seems to be groundwork for gender.

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Re: [SAFESPACE] LGBTIQQ Thread - Queer Support!

Postby abitha » Mon Jan 11, 2010 7:54 pm UTC

Yeah, but you can do this for gay:
GaySymbol.jpg
GaySymbol.jpg (2.37 KiB) Viewed 6894 times

and this for lesbian:
lesbian symbol.jpg
lesbian symbol.jpg (31.24 KiB) Viewed 6894 times

and (i can't find one on google image search, but) overlapping male and female circles for straight.

Doesn't work for the others though.

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Re: [SAFESPACE] LGBTIQQ Thread - Queer Support!

Postby Josephine » Mon Jan 11, 2010 8:24 pm UTC

Jessica wrote:That makes me want to cry. It makes me angry. It makes me frustrated and disgusted.
And it makes me want to reproduce the article for those who may not be able to see it.
Spoiler:
is a dream a lie if it don’t come true / or is it something worse wrote:My dears, you know who I am. Let’s dispense with the formalities.

I want you to promise me something.

First, I’d like to explain why. As per often, I’m going to give you a trigger warning first–I’m not sure what to call it except that this will be upsetting, so take care of yourselves. I am not, I stress, kidding. It has taken me weeks to get this written because my flesh keeps crawling off and, the first few times I tried, I found myself completely inarticulate. If you know me in person–especially if you’re close to the woman in this story–please just…consider not reading at all, because you don’t need to be any more upset.

Five years ago, I met a younger trans woman, not out yet, just coming to terms with herself, and I decided to be our college’s welcoming committee. I took her aside, offered resources and community connections, and otherwise let her know I would be around if she ever needed anything, even just to talk things out with someone who might understand. She was skinny, awkward, tentative, and sweet, and I wanted very much to give her a helping hand I’d lacked at her age, but in the end, she had more clarity about herself than I had. She pulled herself together, let the important people in her life know, and moved forward more decisively than I would have dreamed at eighteen. She had good friends, her family was confused but adjusting, and I knew she would be fine.

Let’s call her Melissa–not because I want to take away another woman’s name, but for the sake of her privacy and that of her loved ones.

Melissa and I never managed to be close, in the end; we had nothing much in common beyond being young trans women at the same school, and even less once we graduated. She was an irreligious libertarian, and I was a socialist looking at seminary; she struggled with the concept of empathy, with which I was overburdened. She was confused as to why I had reached out, presuming to help, and only came to me every few months, when she needed advice on where to find a decent doctor, where to get affordable hormone prescriptions, how to go about the process of legal name change. I offered the information as best I could, and she took it and didn’t really ever say thank you, and that was okay. We were just different people, getting needs met, and we were not the kind of friends I would have liked to be. Her family came around. She had good, caring friends around her, a job, a safe place to live, and she didn’t need anything from me, which was the best possible outcome. She was dating and working out and doing her legal paperwork and she was going to be okay.

A little while ago, Melissa was crossing the street in front of her apartment with her roommate, bringing home groceries late at night from the store right across the way. They were struck by a car in the crosswalk in what appears to have been an innocent, freak accident. Melissa’s roommate was killed instantly. She, because there was an ambulance less than a block away at the time, made it to the hospital with a shattered leg, head injuries, and Gods know what else, comatose.

I didn’t know, when I heard Melissa’s roommate was killed on the morning news, because the news said she’d been with a man, and my first thought was oh, God, is Melissa okay, does she know what happened, she must be so worried. I left a couple of voice messages, but couldn’t get through, and it was only once I saw a report with Melissa’s old name on it that it hit me: there was not a man hit in that accident. She was comatose, with friends there, and family on the way. The prognosis was very, very bad, like “we don’t think she’ll make it till morning” bad.

She made it till morning. And the next night. And the next. We all started passing around updates of how she was doing and taking time to mourn the schoolmate who hadn’t made it. Family arrived, connected with each other, and everyone took a few deep breaths. Melissa started improving, against expectations–eyes opening, snapping fingers when asked, responding in small ways to the people present though she was semiconscious at best and could not move. They made plans to fix her leg and skull and there was talk of moving her to a specialist facility closer to home, one with real support for people recovering from comas, and against all odds she was fighting. It should have been no surprise: she was always a fighter. She was going to be okay.

I didn’t visit. I’m not proud of it, but I was overwhelmed, and was never close to her. I trusted people she would have really wanted there to tell me how she was doing. I went to work, went about my business, went to my comfortable bed in my warm safe home, and she was moved to a newer, better facility that was going to bring her back from the brink of oblivion, and it was all going to be okay. I told myself that over and over, and did my best to ignore the awful, awful feeling in the pit of my stomach. I’d been trying to keep an eye on the future happiness of this woman since she was a teenager. I’d fancied myself some kind of distant big sister, or fairy godmother, or something else nonsensical. I’d thought for some reason that somehow, in this world of all worlds, she’d be okay.

The message came through from her family once she was far away: they were changing up some of the treatment protocols, for Melissa’s sake. It was going to be confusing for her new caregivers to deal with a woman’s name and pronouns while they had to take care of a “male body,” see. This supposedly male body had been on hormones for years. This male body was one with obvious hips and breasts, with no facial hair, with hair past the shoulders before they shaved it all off, with the effects of years of toning and athleticism and medical care shaping it into one that nobody on the street assumed was anything but a cis woman’s. But there was a penis, and that was enough. Enough to override everything else about the last four years of her life. Obviously.

So they were instructing caregivers to call her by her old name, call her “he,” because otherwise it would just be too confusing to explain. They took her off the transitioning medical regimen she’d been on and started talking about memory reconstruction. Her memory would be heavily damaged because of the injuries to her brain, they said. There would have to be a lot of recovery, and it would just be confusing to her to bring up her transitioned life. She’d been a boy with another name for eighteen years, right? Wasn’t that who she really was, at the core? Wouldn’t that be more normal to her? Wouldn’t she just be better served by rebuilding her from the ground up, from the beginning, with the memories that seemed more normal? Maybe if she recovered significantly, if she recovered enough memory and motor function and consciousness, they could start bringing up her transitioned life, but otherwise, they said, she didn’t need to be confused by all of that. The four years of life she’d found worthwhile could just be wiped away like a bad dream, treated as confusion when she woke up, if she woke up, and they could rebuild her on terms that made sense.

They had ultimate power over her–her body, her brain, everything. She was disabled, and couldn’t speak for herself, and couldn’t express her own preferences, and they were next of kin, and they knew best, and the authority for medical decisions was in their hands. They loved her more than anyone, and had her best interests in mind, and were just looking to her recovery, just listening to the doctors.

And if she woke up as from a deep sleep, she’d wake up into a world where her best friend was dead, where her body had been forcibly edited back to its pre-transition state and given a few more years of the influence of testosterone to boot, where her memory and self were hazy and confusing and nobody was calling her by the right name and pronouns, they were in fact pretending four years of her life, the four years she finally got to be honest and true to herself, those had never happened, and shh, she’s just confused, shhhh, calm down, let’s work on fixing your memory some more.

If she was–as many people deemed unconscious, or low-functioning, or unaware by medical professionals, as many many people with disabilities who can’t communicate the “right way” are–aware in any way of what was going on, laying there helpless and voiceless while her body and life and mind were edited and mutilated by loving people, wise professional people in complete control…I actually can’t finish that sentence, because I am shuddering too hard, because I have a hard time imagining a real scenario closer to Hell.

This is not an unusual scenario. It happens all the time, and in worse, far worse, forms. This is still practically standard in the history of how people with disabilities are get violated, and the intersection with trans status only magnifies it. If I got into a car accident tomorrow and fell into a coma, it could happen to me–I can’t marry legally, and my parents who are not part of my life could walk into the hospital and have my partner removed and do pretty much whatever they please with me, a possibility that gives me dry-heaving panic attacks. There is pretty much nothing I can do for Melissa, except what she is doing for herself: since the beginning of the new treatment regimen, all of her improbable recovery has disappeared, and the doctors are at a loss to explain why she is slipping away again, withdrawing further away than before, and won’t come back when they call what they think is her name. They are now bracing for what has become the inevitable.

What I am doing is this: learning the law. I went to a sympathetic lawyer to make sure I would get what I was working on absolutely airtight. I discussed all this with my partner, with close friends and chosen family, and I am having legal documents drawn up to make sure that the people making decisions for me if I cannot are people I trust completely to make the decisions I would want made. I can’t afford it, but I’m making time and budget for it, because the alternative is no longer unthinkable; it’s right there, staring me in the face. I am having those conversations and I am getting them down in writing, notarized, filed, and copied, and I am going to carry a copy everywhere, and so is my partner, so this never, ever happens to me. And I am spreading the word so it doesn’t happen to anyone else.

This is what I want you to promise–me, yourself, someone you care about. Have these conversations. Be aware of these issues and educate yourself. Learn your local laws and get legal documents drawn up. Please. If you can afford a lawyer, hire one. If you cannot, do some research online or at the library. Get this done and get it ironclad.

Do it as soon as you possibly can. I don’t care if you’re young and able-bodied and well-to-do, I don’t care about your operative status or your assumptions about the people in your life. You know what, do this if you’re cis, too. Think about this, and how it affects the trans people you know, and whether or not a twenty-three-year-old cis woman in a coma would be physically altered and have her memory edited just because her family thought she should have been a man and she couldn’t speak for herself. Recognize that, but do this for yourself, too, because anything is possible. Make this explicit. Figure out what your wishes are about your care, write them down, and share them with people you trust, and then make them official, because you cannot know what will happen tomorrow. You cannot know that you won’t be struck down at random by a sober driver in the crosswalk in front of your apartment. You just can’t.

Do this. Promise. Please.


This is nauseating. Fuck.

EDIT: I think the symbol Jessica put up works well. If you do any kind of combination of m/f, you get bi/pansexual. You need something neutral.
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Re: [SAFESPACE] LGBTIQQ Thread - Queer Support!

Postby crickets » Mon Jan 11, 2010 10:09 pm UTC

Jessica wrote:*hug for crickets* I'm not sure, but maybe my girlfriend can help you?


Thanks, Jessica.

I'm just... i feel like i'm a really awkward place because of... a lot of things. It's sort of a strange combination of our ages, how close we've gotten in such a small time, and the fact that there was really no big revelation in learning that the boy i though was /so pretty/ for so long was actually a girl. I just sort of went OH! That makes SO MUCH MORE SENSE now!!
But, as a couple, we face some unique challenges, and there isn't anyone i know who i can talk to. Any support information online is all like... how to cope with learning your boyfriend/girlfriend/husband/wife is transgendered. And i'm not having that problem. But there's medication and side effects and blood tests and stuff and while i knew it was coming and am prepared to deal with it, sometimes i just wish there was list of "oh hey, if this starts to happen, try doing this". We're in a good relationship, we communicate and we support each other, and i love that. There's just... no new information out there for me, and i need something to go on.
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Re: [SAFESPACE] LGBTIQQ Thread - Queer Support!

Postby DJorgensen » Mon Jan 11, 2010 10:18 pm UTC

Jessica wrote:I'm actually thinking that this would make a good symbol

Unfortunately, that reminds me of a target.

Anyway, I need to get this rant off of my chest, as it's been something that has been bothering me for a long while, sadly:
Spoiler:
As time passes, I really feel like I have nothing in common with trans folk. On many levels it bothers me because while I may indeed be trans, I feel misrepresented for who I am by the community itself, and feel that I misrepresent the community by being me. The reality is, I don't have much of anything worthwhile complaining about and I have a hard time talking to or giving support to trans people. I always feel like they are just complaining about how life is so hard to them and everyone hates them and it is all unfair because they are trans. In my experience, yes, life is unfair - but it is unfair to everyone regardless of what they are. I am well aware that not everyone does complain, yet it's the loudest voices that get heard, and typically the loudest voices are the ones that complain the most.

I really feel that if you make a big deal about being trans, then chances are people are going to make a big deal about it back. I really have little to say about it other than, hey, yes, I was born a dude, I guess - and little else is ever really discussed. As it is, I am simply me. It doesn't matter what someone else has to say about it, I really have difficulty putting forth effort enough to care.


Anyway, that's how it goes for me, and why I really think that trans people just generally do not like me. Because if something bad does happen to someone I know because of someone else's stupidity, sure, I'll stand up for them, but they don't need to be trans for me to do that, and I am not going to make a big deal out of the fact that they are part of some minority that gets mistreated. To me, it's just them being who they are.
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Re: [SAFESPACE] LGBTIQQ Thread - Queer Support!

Postby Van » Mon Jan 11, 2010 11:01 pm UTC

I must be 12, because my first thoughts for the proposed symbols were genitals. both of them.

DJ, I kinda totally hear that. I'm always hearing about how hard being trans is and this and that, and well.. I can't really say I've experienced it. Maybe I'm just lucky or something. I'll also admit I've got a pretty horrible case of rose colored glasses, and it'd take something bad for me to really feel negative about it, but the absolute worst reaction I've ever faced in my transition was a guy staring. That's it.

I drop in at the local support group, and usually end up feeling guilty, because it seems like everyone else is having a hard time with something or another, and I'm really not. Sure, things aren't going exactly the way I'd like, much less perfectly, but there's no point in letting the little things get to me, is my way of looking at it.

edit: I decided I wasn't done.

I also feel bad because I want to make things better, I feel like I'm in a position to finally make a difference in the world, albeit a minor one, but all I really want to do is blend in and be absolutely boring and normal, or at least as close as I can get. I don't think I have the inner strength/self confidence/whatever it is that makes someone capable of being an activist.
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Re: [SAFESPACE] LGBTIQQ Thread - Queer Support!

Postby Esperite » Tue Jan 12, 2010 2:46 am UTC

DJorgensen wrote:
Jessica wrote:I'm actually thinking that this would make a good symbol

Unfortunately, that reminds me of a target.

Anyway, I need to get this rant off of my chest, as it's been something that has been bothering me for a long while, sadly:
Spoiler:
As time passes, I really feel like I have nothing in common with trans folk. On many levels it bothers me because while I may indeed be trans, I feel misrepresented for who I am by the community itself, and feel that I misrepresent the community by being me. The reality is, I don't have much of anything worthwhile complaining about and I have a hard time talking to or giving support to trans people. I always feel like they are just complaining about how life is so hard to them and everyone hates them and it is all unfair because they are trans. In my experience, yes, life is unfair - but it is unfair to everyone regardless of what they are. I am well aware that not everyone does complain, yet it's the loudest voices that get heard, and typically the loudest voices are the ones that complain the most.

I really feel that if you make a big deal about being trans, then chances are people are going to make a big deal about it back. I really have little to say about it other than, hey, yes, I was born a dude, I guess - and little else is ever really discussed. As it is, I am simply me. It doesn't matter what someone else has to say about it, I really have difficulty putting forth effort enough to care.


Anyway, that's how it goes for me, and why I really think that trans people just generally do not like me. Because if something bad does happen to someone I know because of someone else's stupidity, sure, I'll stand up for them, but they don't need to be trans for me to do that, and I am not going to make a big deal out of the fact that they are part of some minority that gets mistreated. To me, it's just them being who they are.


*hug* I've always liked your input, and don't worry, you're not alone in your good fortunes =). As much as I've written here, I can't say being transexual has ever made me unhappy. I've gotten frustrated, but even that hasn't been a big deal, it's more akin to nagging. All my close friends are open-minded and tolerant people, my family is very tolerant, the one person I've talked to has been overwhelmingly (to the point of being anticlimactic) supportive, and overall, life is good. My most pressing matter is whether to get a trangender counselor or go to a gender clinic, which isn't a very stressful choice for me.

More good news: I've been doing more drawing, and recently I've tried to start making a comic/manga. I have a good bunch of panels done, which I will probably post on my deviant art (link in sig) at some point. My main character is a crossdressing male who is attracted to guys (I haven't decided the exact sexuality though), and it's cool seeing how my friends react to it =). They are high school boys (mostly), so I give them some slack, but their reactions were pretty good, and it opens conversation to educate them about TG stuff (so I can sneak it in there without suspicion ;] ) I'm surprised that they didn't ask me why I chose that plot, but I'm not complaining (that conversation could get awkward.)

The only bad thing I can really think of is that I'm aggravated by how unmotivated I am. I have such a hard time starting things, and while I really would like to buckle down and decide what type of counselor to get, and focus on that stuff, there's always that little voice in my head that goes "Or you could do it later." It's more of a general rant/problem, but it mainly affects my steps along the transexual path.

Edit: I was used to your old avatar, now you changed it =/. Oh well, this one is good too, and I remembered your name =).
Edit 2: That is for both Van and Djorgeson (did I spell it right?)
Edit 3: Argh, I was right the first time. DJorgenson
4: DJorgensen. Now I have it.
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Re: [SAFESPACE] LGBTIQQ Thread - Queer Support!

Postby Zohar » Tue Jan 12, 2010 6:18 am UTC

The insurance company that used to cover the kids coming to our gay youth organization has decided to discontinue our policy (the instructors still get coverage from Tel Aviv municipal something-or-other, even if they're not in Tel Aviv). They say we're a high risk factor, probably following the murders in August in a gay youth club (which has nothing to do with our organization and whose whereabouts are publicly known, as opposed to the location of the groups we're instructing). Two other companies have refused coverage for the same reason (they don't publicly state that's the reason, they just say "high-risk". We have coverage until the end of the week and if we don't find a replacement, no groups will be allowed to meet. That's hundreds of kids not having a place to go to. And that sucks a lot.
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Re: [SAFESPACE] LGBTIQQ Thread - Queer Support!

Postby Esperite » Wed Jan 13, 2010 2:28 am UTC

=(. I hate stuff like that. It's rediculous, and I can't believe someone would discriminate so openly and make life harder for so many people. Sometimes I just really can't understand how other people think.

I went shopping today with my mom! It was the most awkward experience of my life, but it was also awesome! I got a bunch of things I wanted, learned a bit about feminine fasion, and I'm feeling alot less awkward talking to her about my transexuality now. I'm a bit dissapointed that the knee-high socks I got weren't entirely opaque, but they are still nice =).

I've also decided that I'll probably go to the gender clinic instead of finding a single counselor for this unless I get new information that sways my decision. Life is good =]. People can suck =[.
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Re: [SAFESPACE] LGBTIQQ Thread - Queer Support!

Postby Wyvern » Wed Jan 13, 2010 3:00 am UTC

That really sucks Zohar, I hope you can find a company to cover for you in time.

DJ and Van: You sound pretty lucky, which is something to celebrate! I think it speaks wonders that neither of you have gotten altogether much crap. It gives me some small hope for society as a whole, at least. (Really, you don't have to feel bad about not getting crap, that's a good thing.)


I, myself am getting sick of this other name that everyone has known me by so far. I let out a little sigh of disgust every time I see or hear it. It's aggravating. I want to change it. I want to go out and buy new clothes, and be rid of the old ones. I only have a little bit of work at the moment, but I'm looking for more. I want to go into girl mode as soon as I possibly can. I've wallowed in this depressed limbo for long enough, I want to make changes now.

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Re: [SAFESPACE] LGBTIQQ Thread - Queer Support!

Postby Lumpy » Wed Jan 13, 2010 3:02 am UTC

The first time I went shopping in the women's department, I was really nervous and shuffled about in a shoe aisle for a few hours. I pulled off the racks the first things I saw that caught my eye: a green holiday sweater with a wreath with cardinals sitting on it, and a black velour skirt. It turned out the skirt was nearly ankle-length and didn't really look right for my age, but the experience of having bought it was worth the price anyway.

I got my voice in the ~210 Hz area the day before yesterday, after building up muscle strength in my larynx for the past few months. When I read that a good idea would be to lower it as low as I could from that without breaking it, I started switching back and forth over and over. It was like my voice went up from the bottom of one of the pipes in an upside down Y, and after a few months of practicing in the top part, dropped down into the other pipe. It sounded kind of feminine even when at a low pitch.

In terms of cartoon characters, my voice has been accidentally touched on that of a munchkin, chipmunk, Minnie Mouse, old witch, old man, old woman, a robot, a 60 year old diner waitress that smokes 30 packs a day... I'm glad to finally get it to something that sounds like it should.

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Re: [SAFESPACE] LGBTIQQ Thread - Queer Support!

Postby DJorgensen » Fri Jan 15, 2010 10:35 am UTC

Okay, let my get this straight. I've not evaded anything, my fortunes are not really great. In the past year, my family disowned me telling me it'd be easier if I were dead, I lost the best job I ever had on account of an excuse that had direct holes in it, and I've had a year of relationship matters to resolve (well sort of resolve). As it is, for the past year I've really done nothing to advance my career and only indebted myself further financially.

While I could blame each and every event on being transgendered, how can I really prove and justify that? These sort of things can happen to anyone regardless of who they are. And does putting the blame on something solve anything? Personally I don't feel it does (it can garner sympathy, but I'm too fiercely independent to enjoy sympathy). I just looked at the situation, saw there was nothing that I could do right now, and moved on. Only in the past few months have I really been on my feet again hoping to get a job and go somewhere.
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Re: [SAFESPACE] LGBTIQQ Thread - Queer Support!

Postby Esperite » Fri Jan 15, 2010 8:15 pm UTC

*hugs* It's good that you're able to move on even if crap happens. I hope you manage to get a good job easily =).

I learned that my mom called the gender clinic planning to arrange an appointment (it was just a message though) and while it seems like I should be annoyed that she didn't plan this with me, I'm actually glad because I have such a harder time motivating myself to move forward that it's nice to have a little push =). Part of my lack of motivation probably comes from my worries. I'm worried about alot of things after I go to counseling; I'm worried that I could have a disheartening experience, I'm worried that I'll be wrong and have to deal with the awkward fallout, I'm worried that people won't be ready to accept me. Mostly I'm worried that I'm wrong. It just plays on my doubts and fears. I don't like being wrong, thinking about transition and being a girl makes me happy, I have a strong aversion to awkwardness, and it's just hard to deal with. I'm trying to reassure myself, but it's hard. It's not like this worry is crippling my day to day life, but it makes it so much harder to move forward, because moving forward is uncertain, but today is something I know. =/
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Re: [SAFESPACE] LGBTIQQ Thread - Queer Support!

Postby Van » Sat Jan 16, 2010 1:14 pm UTC

Van wrote:I ... usually end up feeling guilty

Every couple weeks, I'll be reading some forum that I lurk in and think "This is a good community to be involved with, and I like their discussions, I should join in the conversation!". I don't think I've ever made it more than a day before realizing, yet again, it was a mistake.
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Re: [SAFESPACE] LGBTIQQ Thread - Queer Support!

Postby Jessica » Mon Jan 18, 2010 2:27 pm UTC

I'm back at work.

I hurt. Not a lot, but enough. Sort of a dull ache that makes me tired.

But! I have my breasts. and looking at myself in the mirror makes me feel... right. It's kind of weird. And they don't quite look natural yet (being swollen and bruised) but... they're mine. and they're real.

Yay! Ow >.< Yay!
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Re: [SAFESPACE] LGBTIQQ Thread - Queer Support!

Postby Chai Kovsky » Mon Jan 18, 2010 5:07 pm UTC

Congratulations, love! I'm sure they're absolutely beautiful. I'm so happy for you!
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Re: [SAFESPACE] LGBTIQQ Thread - Queer Support!

Postby Lumpy » Mon Jan 18, 2010 11:31 pm UTC

Congratulations, Jessica. I hope you recover soon.

Right now my family may not be able to pay the rent by the end of the month, so I've been looking for a job. I also need $650 for textbooks. My Pell grant isn't arriving until early February because it turns out my college needs to verify my attendance. My sister loaned a little, but I think things could be in dire straits soon. I guess the upside is that at least I have my hormones.

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Re: [SAFESPACE] LGBTIQQ Thread - Queer Support!

Postby Sourire » Tue Jan 19, 2010 12:53 am UTC

Lumpy wrote:Right now my family may not be able to pay the rent by the end of the month, so I've been looking for a job. I also need $650 for textbooks. My Pell grant isn't arriving until early February because it turns out my college needs to verify my attendance. My sister loaned a little, but I think things could be in dire straits soon. I guess the upside is that at least I have my hormones.

If your university works like mine (and it very well may not), you may be able to postpone buying the books for a few weeks of the semester. Between finding people to work with and online resources, I'd think it's doable in the short-term.

And yay having your hormones. :)
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Re: [SAFESPACE] LGBTIQQ Thread - Queer Support!

Postby videogamesizzle » Tue Jan 19, 2010 1:56 am UTC

*high-fives Jessica*

My friend still hasn't given me his little questionnaire yet, even though he's mentioned the fact that he hasn't given it to me multiple times. The longer I don't have them, the more I start to reconsider the consequences of telling him, and if I keep doing that, I'll never tell anyone.
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Re: [SAFESPACE] LGBTIQQ Thread - Queer Support!

Postby SurgicalSteel » Tue Jan 19, 2010 4:24 pm UTC

Quick question, and I figure I'd be most likely to get a good answer here. I have made a statement in a paper I am writing that gender roles are gradually ebbing and disappearing or at least being challenged in much of developed western society and I need to find a source to support it. All I can find is a couple sentences in the wikipedia article on gender roles:
"According to sociology research, traditional feminine gender roles have become less relevant and hollower in Western societies since industrialization started. For example, the cliché that women do not follow a career is obsolete in many Western societies."
But wikipedia is not a citable source. I am also unable to find a source stating the opposite. If anyone could point me in the right direction to a reliable source for either conclusion that'd be great. Thanks.
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Re: [SAFESPACE] LGBTIQQ Thread - Queer Support!

Postby Jessica » Tue Jan 19, 2010 4:32 pm UTC

If you're reading a wikiarticle, usually they have other links, or sources that they're citing. Follow those to get secondary sources, which you can usually follow to get primary sources.
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Re: [SAFESPACE] LGBTIQQ Thread - Queer Support!

Postby CueBall » Tue Jan 19, 2010 4:36 pm UTC

Jessica wrote:If you're reading a wikiarticle, usually they have other links, or sources that they're citing. Follow those to get secondary sources, which you can usually follow to get primary sources.


I tried that, the citations are mostly papers, and thus hard to follow online.
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Re: [SAFESPACE] LGBTIQQ Thread - Queer Support!

Postby SurgicalSteel » Tue Jan 19, 2010 4:38 pm UTC

Not to mention that there is no citation for those two sentences, which would just be too easy. Also what CueBall said.
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Anchorman screams that he's seen a monster (mayday)
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Re: [SAFESPACE] LGBTIQQ Thread - Queer Support!

Postby doogly » Tue Jan 19, 2010 4:42 pm UTC

SurgicalSteel wrote:Quick question, and I figure I'd be most likely to get a good answer here. I have made a statement in a paper I am writing that gender roles are gradually ebbing and disappearing or at least being challenged in much of developed western society and I need to find a source to support it. All I can find is a couple sentences in the wikipedia article on gender roles:
"According to sociology research, traditional feminine gender roles have become less relevant and hollower in Western societies since industrialization started. For example, the cliché that women do not follow a career is obsolete in many Western societies."
But wikipedia is not a citable source. I am also unable to find a source stating the opposite. If anyone could point me in the right direction to a reliable source for either conclusion that'd be great. Thanks.


But the opposite is false; they absolutely have been ebbing away. To what extent? Enough? To much? You might get a diversity of opinions on this, but there is no credible argument to make that gender roles are just as powerful as they were pre-industrialisation. You can probably search your library's catalog for the topic 'gender' and get more relevant results than you know what to do with. Then you can get a book.

Also, are you connecting from home? If you connect from a university computer, it might have access to the papers.
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Re: [SAFESPACE] LGBTIQQ Thread - Queer Support!

Postby Jessica » Tue Jan 19, 2010 4:43 pm UTC

If they're academic papers, you can use google scholar to try searching for the name of the article. that will often give you an abstract. Or if you're doing an actual school essay (say for university...), they may have more access through their own library system which you can look up.

If it's news papers, often they are online, even if they're not linked. You can often search for that again.

Another good place is the discussion, where they sometimes have more links as well, which haven't made to the front page yet.

If you want other resources, other than wiki, I would suggest some feminist websites, or writings. They can give you some 101 knowledge, and often have "read more" kind of links to give you more info.

(I know I'm not doing it myself, I just don't have the links offhand).

Edit: And yeah, some of it isn't sourced, but you can still check out the other links or sources anyway, as they might have some info you need.
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Re: [SAFESPACE] LGBTIQQ Thread - Queer Support!

Postby Teapot » Tue Jan 19, 2010 6:17 pm UTC

A bit late, but congrats, Jessica :)

Spoilered for pointless worrying and for being off the current topic.

Spoiler:
Tonight I am going out with my binder on and guys clothes on. I thought I would be less worried seeing as I've done it a fair few times now but this is the first time I'm going to do it in front of uni friends. Not my main group of friends, but the group who like going to gay bars and things (which is my favourite night time activity) so they're still pretty important to me. They don't know me all that well yet, though. And I haven't said anything about this to them before so I'm worried that they'll think I'm weird and they won't want me to tag along with them or something and I'll end up on my own for the night with a few less friends. I was hoping they would show up at the trans/intersex night our lgbt group had last semester (where there was a presentation on trans/intersex issues and people were encouraged to ask questions in a friendly environment) because that would give me at least some idea on their feelings, but they missed that night so that makes me worry more. I think I am probably worrying far too much but I can't seem to stop myself.
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Re: [SAFESPACE] LGBTIQQ Thread - Queer Support!

Postby SurgicalSteel » Tue Jan 19, 2010 8:04 pm UTC

Thanks for the advice Jessica and doogly. I'll see if I can find something via those channels.
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Re: [SAFESPACE] LGBTIQQ Thread - Queer Support!

Postby Teapot » Tue Jan 19, 2010 9:46 pm UTC

I am back early from my night out (the murder mystery thing kind of sucks when the first person pretty much tells you who did it). Spoilered for drunken rambling, most likely.
Spoiler:
I got there and we weren't even 5 minutes into the night when somebody made a joke about "Oh I wish I was a woman" "Well unless you secretly have a penis, you are" and that kind of made me think "it was a really stupid idea to wear my binder today". So I dealt with it in a completely rational way (hahaha). I kept my hoodie on (it's a guys medium size and therefore swamps me and makes sure I have no shape whether I'm wearing my binder or not) and drank twice as much as everybody else did (because alcohol totally makes things better, obviously). Then I just left when everybody else did (which was before the night ended because the murder mystery sucked and everyone else has classes tomorrow morning so they don't want to stay out too late) and felt stupid. Nobody even got to see my batman t shirt and that makes me kind of sad. Also as a result of drinking much more than normal I am now ever so slightly tipsy so I apologise if none of that makes any sense (I love the dictionary thing for firefox - at least I won't spell things so wrong as a result of the alcohol).
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"I'm sorry, sir, it's LNWL. There's nothing we can do".

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dragon
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Re: [SAFESPACE] LGBTIQQ Thread - Queer Support!

Postby dragon » Fri Jan 22, 2010 7:02 am UTC

Hugs and commiserations, Teapot.

I'm hopeful that this group could still be supportive for you eventually. That could be a thoughtless statement by someone not used to thinking about gender identities. It doesn't make their comment any less hurtful, but someone saying terrible things out of ignorance at least has the potential to be a supporting friend if they manage to learn.

(In no way saying that it's your duty to teach them. Just reminded of my own past stupidities with their 'joke'.)
Context? What context?
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Re: [SAFESPACE] LGBTIQQ Thread - Queer Support!

Postby Sourire » Sun Jan 24, 2010 6:49 am UTC

So my university today sponsored an LGBT alumni event (the first of its kind here). While I wasn't quite sure what to expect, it was actually really nice to speak to a few people who graduated years ago to gain some perspective as to how things have changed. I daresay it may have inspired some optimism.
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Re: [SAFESPACE] LGBTIQQ Thread - Queer Support!

Postby crickets » Sun Jan 24, 2010 7:48 am UTC

SurgicalSteel wrote:Thanks for the advice Jessica and doogly. I'll see if I can find something via those channels.


Librarian Spoiler Re: Academic Papers
Spoiler:
If this is for university, please regard the following.

Do not start with a presupposition about what the outcome of your paper will say. Go to your university's library website and use thier online journal databases to find appropriate sources. It is okay to select sources which support your hypothesis, but be prepared to read through many, many papers. Try to find a unifying thought within those papers to base your thesis. Also, please use your library, librarians are there to help.

Using sociology-based databases is a good place to start, and there is a Journal of Gender Studies out there (i checked.... nerdgasm). You need to be more specific in your search terms; try boolean combining Gender AND Roles AND equality for better search results. It's also a good idea to specifiy the region in which your research is applicable, otherwise you may become bogged down with papers about women in developing countries when really you're looking for women in the US. Presupposing you're looking for papers regarding standard gender roles and their prevelance, and not the issue of transgender roles or sexuality, as that requires a whole other search paradigm.

Also: Do NOT use any website without first verifying its authenticity and the credibility of the author. .org and .edu websites are significantly more reliable than .coms. Any website that shows and obvious bias is probably not something to use in a research based paper, but provided it's authors are people signifcant education in their field, they could be useful for an opinion based paper. Ensure you are clear on what the expectations are.

Provided this is a school related paper. If not, please disregard this.


End librarian.

Sorry... i'm sort of obligated to do this. DAMN YOU EDUMACATION.

I'm going to shut up... now.
Okay.
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