Category Archive: queer

Pick a side, and other bisexual misunderstandings

I started identifying as bisexual at 18 because I realised those butterflies weren’t from me just really wanting to be friends with that girl in my class. Since I was in a monogamous heterosexual relationship at the time, and would be for another 2 years, it didn’t prompt much external change, other than a pronoun …

Fatness is not bravery: On queer affirmation and fuckability

I never dated in high school and I didn’t at University, either. I was unhappy with my weight, awkward, painfully shy and self-sabotaging, which is something I’ve always wanted to address. I’d never realised that sexuality is a spectrum and that you could identify as anything but straight or gay. Is it any wonder I …

Buddhism, diaspora and the challenge of faith in queer communities

Late last year, I attended a forum on queerness and faith. The event was supposed to be multi-faith, but five Christian chaplains came and no other faith groups were represented at all. Even when I talk about Buddhism, which is my own faith, Christianity is always the elephant in the room. As much as we …

Face to face with my queer hero, Carlos Celdran

“Cruel mothers are still mothers… are humans. Who sometimes give birth to their pain. Instead of children.” Nayyirah Waheed wrote these verses in a poem titled hate, and I wonder if that is what being Filipino means to me. I grew up in a three-bedroom house in an upper-middle-class suburb, with a Brother I was …

Teaching while androgynous: Broaching gender with kids vs. adults

As an androgynous-looking person, I’m misgendered every single day of my life. Bathrooms, pubs, on the bus, at airport security — you name it, I’ve been misgendered there. Tall, masculine girl or well-dressed teenage boy? No one knows, but they sure want to find out. Perhaps I make things harder for myself by working as …

Call out culture’s generation gap: Tumblr, queer theory, and lateral violence

Recent reports label millennials the “gayest generation ever”. I didn’t doubt it for a second. We are producing some of the most diverse, well-rounded representations of queer folk, and these depictions are reaching the mainstream in some of the largest quantities in history. We are overwhelmingly out and, by and large, society in most of …

Non-hierarchical polyamory: Stepping off the relationship escalator

In June 2015, when same sex marriage was made legal in all US states, it was a turning point in the international fight for rights and recognition of queer relationships – indeed, my fiancee and I found our fervour for such structure doubled in the hope that it was closer than ever to being possible …

Gay shame: Orlando and the Muslim community’s response to tragedy

Exactly one week after the Pulse nightclub shooting, my cousin Tariq and I drive into downtown Orlando for a drink. I’ve just flown into Florida for a writing workshop, and my Dad reached out to his old friend Tariq to show me around in the meantime. In Afghan culture, we refer to people like Tariq …

Extracting queerness from a narrative of suffering

I will confess that when I transitioned, I struggled to come to terms with my burgeoning privileges. Growing up as an awkward, gangly, heavyset girl in the 90s, I was aware of my place as ‘other’. At primary school I gravitated towards friends who were the odd-ones out. At high school the rift between myself …

Whose side?: Sexual violence in queer communities

Content warning: This article discusses sexual violence and assault, as well as suicidal ideation and eating disorders. We have a problem in our communities, and you need to do something. Most of the sexual assault and violence I have faced as an adult is from queers. And it has mostly been met with disbelief or …

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The Australian journal of sexual diversity.