What a boring life!

When a guy in India decided this world wasn’t worth it, and yet, committing suicide would have been against his convictions by being too final, he decided to sue his own parents: they had conceived him in an irresponsible fit of passion without ever asking him whether he wanted to be born or not.

The guy’s mom said she and her husband were guilty as charged. They never thought that their offspring (gender unknown yet) would be so keen on defending her or his rights. But, she added, she wonders who’s going to pay the damages should they lose the case.

And no, this wasn’t an April Fools’ joke.

And neither is LVRSNFRNDS. This is not a word picked from some exotic language. This is a down-to-earth abbreviation for lovers and friends.

Sophie Mona Pagés, founder of LVRSNFRNDS, describes herself as she/they, another of those esoteric expressions, so up-to-date these days.

If you don’t know what she/they means, you’re uncool, definitely not with the times, perfectly not in, and you should thank Ms. Pagés for her contribution to humanity: she put together an explanatory list of the terms used among the variety of genders. These seem to be so overwhelming that many universities have found it necessary to form gender studies departments.

To the basics

Anatomically, gender consists of genitals, chromosomes, hormones, pubic hair and other such parts, Ms. Pagés opens her tour of elucidation.

Then, she delves right into the matter at hand: “You may have encountered terms such as AFAB (Assigned Female At Birth) or AMAB (Assigned Male At Birth). That’s what it’s all about.”

About what?

Neither of these has the option of selecting their gender, not during their childhood, not when their reach puberty or adulthood, even.

Never mind having a say in selecting any while in one’s mother’s womb.

Cisgender

Jackie Golob, with all of four years’ worth of practice in Minneapolis since graduating from St. Cloud State University in 2018, offers this almost perfect textbook definition: “When a physician identifies a new-born as a girl, based on her genitals, and the person identifies with this assignment, she is called a cisgender.

Going with the times, people in this group like to call themselves using the abbreviation “cis.”

This kind of explanation goes a long ways to explain the name of Ms. Golob’s website: Shameless Therapy. She identifies as she/her/hers, whatever THAT is supposed to mean.

Transgender

Ms. Pagés to the rescue: these people are the opposite of the preceding case. Their gender differs from the anatomy of their genitals. They can be trans-male, trans-female, or non-binary persons.

Non- HUH?

These do not identify as either men or women, Ms. Pagés explains, adding a word of caution: they shouldn’t be described or addressed as trans or transgender. They [prefer transperson, or transgender person or, specifically, trans male or trans female.

Cishet

This term must have been invented by gender studies academics: it repeats the basics of another term, throwing a few more specific characteristics in.

Judge for yourselves: the term describes people whose gender identity is the same as their anatomy (cisgender, remember?), and who are sexually attracted to people of opposite gender.

A typical example: a person born with a vagina identifies as a woman and looks for men in her romantic life.

Non-binary persons

All you have to do qualify is to refuse to identify as either male or female. You can say you’re both, or neither, something completely different from both established basic genders.

Intersex

A person born with some kind of a combination of both genders (genitals, hormones, chromosomes) or a genital variation that differs from all biological genders.

This is described as a natural variant in human anatomy and there’s nothing wrong with it. In fact, two people out of a hundred can apply.

Genderqueer

A perfectly flexible gender: people identify as neither male nor female, or they identify as both male and female, or a combination of both of these genders. Experts say genderqueer and non-binary can be used as synonyms. Besides, genderqueer often carries political undertones, such as the third gender.

Genderfluid

Another proof that says life’s a change and change is life. Your sexual orientation and preferences can be changing, and so can your gender. You can feel masculine today and feminine tomorrow. One of the expressions used here is Genderbread Person.

Gender Nonconforming

Another sign of times have gone crazy. In exuberant attempts to look original, people like this ignore norms prevalent in their culture. For example, an AMAB (see above) with nails painted pink. First of all, you want to attract attention by not conforming: painted nails have been a typical sign of femininity in your culture, or just don’t know what to do: you’re so bloody bored.

Gender expansive

The LGBTQIA (or LGBTQIA+) community use this description to replace the Gender Nonconforming original. The acronym means Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender, Transsexual, Two-spirit, Queer, Questioning, Intersex, Asexual, Ally, A-gender, Bi-gender, Gender Queer, Pansexual, Pangender, and Gender Variant. With time, it can develop into something even more encompassing. That’s what the + sign is for.

Agender

Life must be exciting for this group. They don’t identify with any gender on the list, feeling neither male nor female. That’s where the “they/them” denominator comes from.

Some attach gender freedom to this designation, others say it signifies a genderless emptiness

Gendervoid

Similar to agender, except: people in this group don’t feel anything whatsoever about gender identity. Members of this group don’t experience any gender attachments and, they say, they are unable to, anyway. They define this state by saying that biological sex is a physical matter, while gender is all about feeling.

Back to school

You can learn all of this (and more) from so many websites your head will start turning as if in the feeling of weightlessness while flying to the moon.

Here’s where they will all agree:

  • theirs a safe space for self-growth for individuals by individuals with a queer and intersectional approach to life: everything lives on a spectrum and should be questioned, everyone brings something to the table, especially when there is something about them that breaks with “the norm”
  • theirs is a community-powered self-care. LVRSNFRNDS, for example, identifies itself as a space for self-discovery where people make friends. It focuses on conversations where people share both their highs and lows, where they connect on a deeper level.
  • theirs is a private and mission-driven network with a focus on quality rather than quantity of connections, and without pressure to pretend and perform.

That none of these sites explain the roots and origins of behaviours that border on the unusual, to put it mildly, and that their conversation doesn’t seem to contribute an iota to human progress sounds irrelevant. Judging by their literature, anyway.

So much scientifically-looking gibberish in just three paragraphs! Of course, for those who manage to hop on the gravy train of gender studies, the prebends can be endless. Especially if would-be gender academics manage to insinuate themselves all the way to tenure.

So long as they are different, it’s all that matters. Whether they add anything to humanity matters not.

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