By Guest Blogger, RadDyke
Well…I know I’ve been disappeared. My computer got a virus, and then I was back at Cowgirl’s (the land of no internet) for a few weeks. But I’m back online now…and back to writing. Before I start a 30 day blog challenge over at my blog (and for me, that will be quite a challenge), I wanted to put pen to paper (uh…fingers to keyboard) over here a bit.
So today, I want to talk to you about those in the community who don’t identify, and having relationships with them. This does stem from a personal part of my life, but it’s something people ask me about all the time, so I wanted to write about it. A long time ago, I wrote about it over on my blog, but a year or two later into my relationship with Cowgirl, I think it’s time to re-examine it. I’m going to write about our personal identities, not because I feel like they’re important for you knowing me, but because I’d really rather talk about someone I know (us), than try to speculate about the identity politics of strangers. I do identify as queer, or a dyke, or really however you want to label me. For me, words are words. That’s really all they are. My identity is fairly fluid, but I don’t mind labels, even if they don’t fit me right at that time. Cowgirl, on the other hand, is adamant about not being labeled. As anything. Ever.
It’s especially true in relation to sexuality. No, she’s not queer. She’s certainly not gay. And bisexual isn’t right either. She runs away from all of those labels because they’re just words…they don’t sum up a person in a situation and take into account everything that goes with the individuality of human existence. So the question is…are people who don’t label still a part of the “community”? I’ve gotten very mixed reactions from queer people. Some say “of course, she’s dating you, that makes her queer, even if she doesn’t identify as such”. And some say “well, she doesn’t embrace the label, so she isn’t one of us”. Now mind you, she doesn’t give a flying fuck either way, nor does she really care that people aren’t sure whether or not she should be allowed into the “gay community”. But it’s something interesting to think about.
What defines someone who is considered gay (or queer)? Do you have to fuck people of the same gender? Have desires for people of the same gender (or of queer genders)? Identify as queer? Why are some of us so easily accepted into this invisible “community” while others are completely excluded? My partner is not queer. She’s not gay, she’s not bi. Should she be considered queer only when she’s out with me? Not even then? Do you even follow what I’m saying???
Is identity relational? Is she queer by proxy? Because I’m an out dyke and she is my partner, is she automatically queer? If you say yes, where does that leave identity? Is she still queer if she says “fuck no, I don’t want to be labeled”? When, if ever, do you disregard identity for this imaginary community that seems to be such an exclusive club?
Where does this even leave me? A queer woman with a female bodied, female identified partner, yes. But am I in a gay relationship if my partner isn’t gay? A queer relationship if I’m the only queer one? It’s not an issue I’m working through anymore, really. I’ve accepted that I’m the queer one in a fluid, ambiguously defined relationship. But other members of the community seem to have a really hard time with it. “How is she not gay or bi? She’s dating a woman isn’t she?” My opinion on the matter is that you don’t have to define if you don’t want to. Your relationship doesn’t define you. Who you fuck doesn’t define you. Only you can define who you are. And the rest of the “community” better respect that.