November 2017
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different all the time in multiple significant ways / categories: identities, experiences, & values

icon: "distance (two hands (from a brown person and a white person) just barely apart, facing each other palm to palm)"

It can be fun to be different sometimes, in small ways. It's not fun to be different all the time in multiple significant ways. If everyone self-educated about everyone who is different from them and worked to use inclusive language, being different would just be wonderful. They don't, so it's exhausting to be different. It means that a shitton of your social interaction is fending off bad assumptions and explaining things, all the while hoping that your efforts are making an actual difference and won't have to be repeated constantly. All the while having to remind yourself that kindhearted people don't mean to act like you are inferior or unrelatable, or like you don't belong. And never being quite sure, because not all bigots are honest.

I have compiled a list of how I can be categorized. Other than being white, nondisabled, and assigned female at birth, I usually have very very little in common with people I meet.

Now keep in mind that each of these is as important to who I am as occupation or religion is to your average person. Some of them are plenty common, but not in combination with others (for instance, being white is common but being both white and dedicated to intersectional social justice is not). In almost every case, attending a meeting intended for all people of one of my identities will be alienating, because they will assume that another part of my identity does not exist. For example, being pagan-ish and agender: most people who can relate to me spiritually (by revering nature) love to gender everything, which of course feels like them shouting "get out" in my face. Or being queer and southern because wow do queers run away. Or being a relationship anarchist and NOT being allosexual.

queer / relationship anarchist / agender trans (experience self as intersex) / southern USian not intending to leave / cyber citizen / unaffiliated spirituality (eclectic pagan quaker) / fat & proud / demisexual/asexual spectrum / nudist / literal tree-hugger who believes in plant sentience & ecological justice / energy-worker / data scientist / fractal artist / color/light worshipper / photographer / maker/crafter / psychonaut / writer / erotic mirror / sci-fi/fantasy geek

growing up poor / neglectful physically & emotionally abusive parents / assigned female at birth / ADD/Autism spectrum / devoutly & independently spiritual as a child (read the bible cover-to-cover 3x) / childhood trauma (sexual abuse) / university schooling / white / non-disabled

intersectional social justice / conflict resolution early & often / curiosity & questioning / openness over comfort / vegetarian for ecological reasons / content creator* / learn-sharer** / consent advocate*** / growth-seeker^ / sharer^^ / being thorough

* (one who creates content for others to use/enjoy)
** (one who explains their learning process to others so that they can learn too)
*** (one who actively seeks to never infringe on the will of another, and to prevent such happening anywhere they can: most people would like to think of themselves as this but do not do work to be it)
^ (one who is always focused on improving, never content to be static)
^^ (one who attempts to live up to 'from each according to ability, to each according to need': anti-capitalist)

[percentages of likeness with people I know who are most like me plus examples of the average person]
People I know who are the most like me (this is my best guess):

Vola: 26 (65%)
Hannah: 24 (60%)
Topaz: 23 (58%)
Kylei: 22 (55%)
Sande: 19 (48%)
Adi: 19 (48%)
Sydney: 18 (45%)
Elizabeth: 18 (45%)
Arizona: 18 (45%)
Abby: 17 (43%)
Allison: 17 (43%)
Rachel: 17 (43%)
Firekat: 15 (38%)
Jaime: 13 (33%)
Cass: 13 (33%)
Heather: 12 (30%)

And to compare to more average people:
recent boss: 9 (23%)
coworker 1: 8 (20%)
coworker 2: 6 (15%)
parent P: 8 (20%)
parent M: 7 (18%)
sibling S: 6 (15%)
sibling B: 7 (18%)
partners' siblings:
A1: 7 (18%)
A2: 6 (15%)
B1: 4 (10%)
B2: 4 (10%)
C1: 5 (13%)

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zimtkeks ══╣╠══
Oh yes, being different and trying to interact can be so exhausting.
I'd still like to ask you a question about one of the things you listed here. I hope you don't mind; if you don't feel like explaining, I won't be offended.
What do you mean by "erotic mirror"?
belenen ══╣honesty╠══
By erotic mirror, I mean that I don't have much of an independent desire for sex or for roles in sex (except maybe a certain kind of primal). I don't daydream about particular kinds of sex or sexual play, for instance. Instead, my sexual desire comes from an interaction with a partner where they have a particular desire and my desire mirrors that: they want to submit and thus I want to make them submit, or they want to take charge and thus I want to allow them (though that is rare because I dislike how most people try to take charge). If they have no particular desire, then my desire is somewhat random and based on memory -- whatever memory I have of an occasion that was particularly emotionally intense is what I will want to do.

The only things I really love for their own sake are biting, kissing, and energy play. Even if the other person doesn't have an active desire for these things but is like "they're okay, I like them a little" I will want to do them. Not as much, but still a little bit. Whereas with other things like genital touch or bondage, if the person feels only mild like, I won't want to do them any more. I only want to do those things if the other person is really into it.
zimtkeks ══╣╠══
Thank you!
It sounds like something that makes it a bit easier to find matching partners because you don't have to stick to only one kind of person.
belenen ══╣analytical╠══
well, it could be, but a lot of people want to interact with a role in such a way that the fact that I don't have an identity as a particular role means that they find me less appealing. It's like being pansexual -- you literally have more people you'd be interested in, but lots of them want you to only be interested in their kind. Lots of gay women will outright reject you for being pansexual. Similarly, there's a pattern of rejection for people who aren't 100% dom or sub.
zimtkeks ══╣╠══
Aw, I didn't think of that. Probably because it doesn't make sense to me. But people sometimes don't, I guess.
ragnarok_08 ══╣Madoka Magica ★ unique within itself╠══
Yes, interaction while being different are all sorts of exhausting.
belenen ══╣pensive╠══
theselivingarms ══╣╠══
I greatly admire the fact that you understand and know your identity. Many of us are still trying to find our place in the world. Your entries give me hope <3
belenen ══╣artless╠══
aw, thanks for expressing that <3
webgirluk ══╣pic#124969441╠══
I hear you on differences not being as much as a barrier if you feel at comfort with not having to educate others in understanding them. I enjoy learning about differences but I think with me I probably fear differences will matter to others, even when they don't to me. So I guess acceptance is a key thing that might over ride many differences but as well I suppose, there's differences I find hard to accept. I am not accepting over people who are overall unkind to others or whose morals vastly differ from mine but I am very accepting over people who are different to me in other ways that are just lifestyle choices that don't harm others. I've made these scoring lists over friends loosely but as well I find my scoring keeps changing as I learn more about myself and what truly does - or doesn't matter to me - in a connection. For instance, curious people who enjoy deep/general life sharing like me matters to me but someone with the same occupation as me does not matter to me much beyond it making for an interesting conversation within a lifeshare experience. Great entry :-)
belenen ══╣analytical╠══
I feel you on not accepting people who are deliberately unkind or otherwise clash with you morally. When you can't accept someone's behavior as okay (for instance because it is actually causing damage!) then you can't accept the person. I think people talk about acceptance a lot but I don't think of it as valuable to accept all people. I think it is valuable to make sure you aren't rejecting people for faulty reasons, like because society says they aren't worthy. But I think it is also valuable to be able to reject people who are causing you or your people damage.
volamonster ══╣doorway╠══
I feel like I know what you mean here, or at least my version of what you mean, because I, too, am different in numerous significant ways--as you know! And as evidenced by the percentage of likeness between us. (Which made me smile, and I do agree.) Just one more reason I wish we lived near each other. I think/feel that so often.

It's hard for me too. Connecting with others feels impossible sometimes. I know it's not, it just... feels like it.
belenen ══╣dreamy╠══
*nods lots* I wasn't actually expecting to have the most in common with you! but when I counted it up and realized, it made perfect sense to me.

I do wish we lived near each other. It is good for my being just to know that you exist *hearts*
on communication, social justice, intimacy, consent, friendship & other relationships, spirituality, gender, queerness, & dreams. Expect to find curse words, nudity, (occasionally explicit) talk of sex, and angry ranting, but NEVER slurs or sexually violent language. I use TW when I am aware of the need and on request.
Expect to find curse words, nudity, (occasionally explicit) talk of sex, and angry ranting, but NEVER slurs or sexually violent language. I use TW when I am aware of the need and on request.