beyond the binaries

Posts tagged kate bornstein

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Growing up, I got pretty good at being boy. But boy wasn’t an identity I could live with. Boy wasn’t how I wanted to be treated, and boy was never how I wanted to act. Boy never allowed me to truly express myself. Every waking moment that I walked through the world as boy and man made me feel like a liar and a phony.

But after I went through my gender change, I found myself still living a life of working hard at being, only now I was working hard at being girl. Nothing in the paradigm of my life allowed for being neither. And the more I tried to be boy or girl, the less I seemed to measure up to either, and the less I wanted to stay alive.

It finally got to the point where it just didn’t seem worth it anymore. It came down to this: should I kill myself or should I make myself a life worth living? And it wasn’t so much the question that kept me alive or even my answer. What kept me alive was the notion that it was me who was asking the question.

Kate Bornstein in Hello Cruel World: 101 Alternatives to Suicide for Teens, Freaks and Other Outlaws (via fuckmemilo)

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Do you know how much is based on whether you’re a man or a woman? Try going as neither. Put on a mustache. Make people wonder what the fuck you are. Do that for one day. Or make it easier—ask three questions, honestly, of yourself. What is a man? What is a woman? Why do we have to be one or the other? And I think if a majority of the world asked themselves those three questions over a period of three minutes, we’d have a hell of a change on this planet. If they honestly, without fear of retribution or loss of respect, could ask themselves these questions, that would change the face of the globe.
Kate Bornstein  (via pansexualpride)

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I have this idea that every time we discover that the names we’re being called are somehow keeping us less than free, we need to come up with new names for ourselves, and that the names we give ourselves must no longer reflect a fear of being labeled outsiders, must no longer bind us to a system that would rather see us dead.
kate bornstein (via genderbound)

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Kate addressing hir class at hir 40th-year college reunion (Brown class of 1969). In which Kate says “More embarrassing than ‘I’m transsexual’ is ‘I used to be a Scientologist!’ ” and talks about hir books.

Oh, I love Kate so much!

If you’ve been having a hard time, listen to the end —after 4:50— where she summarizes her book “Hello, Cruel World”. (Hint: do anything it takes to make your life worth living. The only rule? Don’t be mean.)

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