Q&A: “…being nonbinary, does it ever get difficult to navigate different aspects of your life because of you being nonbinary?”
So I wanted to ask being nonbinary, does it ever get difficult to navigate different aspects of your life because of you being nonbinary, specifically things like dealing with career, or a hobby or a passion that you have, where it feels like you have to hide or compromise who you are in order to retain that aspect of your life. I ask because right now i’m thinking of transitioning and even though i’m financially independant it feels like my different interests are tying me down 1/2
and that in order not to loose those interests I have to compromise various aspects of me being nonbinary, like for instance I do singing and karate and it feels like if I ever wanted to start transitioning I’d have to give those things up or say that i’m binary trans in order to justify transitioning, It feels like i’m at a crossroads between nonbinary and other aspects of my life ( career, passions, e.t.c) so I was wondering how you manage to navigate being nonbinary in relation to other aspects of your life? 2/2
i’ve been at the crossroads that you speak of for years now, anon. at least in regards to moving forward with life in general, but my career also factors into that.
on one hand, in deciding to remain in Japan it feels like i’ve simultaneously and yet unwillfully decided to forgo things regarding my gender, subsequently compromising my quality of life. on the other hand, it feels like if i were to decide to move back to the US to pursue gender related things and improve my quality of life on that front, such a decision would simultaneously be borderline “career suicide” for me for various reasons… just as pursuing gender related things in Japan in my current field of work would also be borderline “career suicide”– or rather, at the very least, current-job suicide.
a no-win situation.
actually, a lot has been happening for me over the past month or so in regards to my career and things in general are incredibly turbulent right now. i hope to make a video touching on this topic this coming weekend, so i won’t go into detail about it here, but things are in the process of changing for me career and lifestyle wise. i’ve had to / am having to reassess how to navigate things on the gender and offline queer activism front in relation to my career and it’s really tough.
when it comes to hobbies / passions, i’m lucky in that gender (and sexuality) is (/are) more-or-less irrelevant to my biggest passion / hobby, ie. photography. that said, gender (among other things) does (/do) make cycling more challenging… i used to cycle with a group of cyclists and i enjoyed doing so, but it didn’t take long for the dysphoria and other shitty feelings of not being able to bind while cycling to ruin my enjoyment of that. it’s a struggle to even cycle with friends who are trans / non-binary themself because chest. ugh. even cycling alone, i still feel like i compromise my own comfort every time i step foot outside of my apartment binderless because that’s the only way i can do what i enjoy, ie. cycling. i don’t mind being condemned to cycling solo since i’m a loner anyway, but i still feel the loss of cycling with friends, of the added safety that exists when cycling in a group in traffic, etc.
you asked how i manage to navigate being non-binary in relation to other aspects of my life, but really everything i do boils down to nothing more than compromising to some extent or another; to cautiously gauging how far i could get away with pushing the envelope in regards to my own feelings, needs, etc without incurring unmanageable consequences, etc. aside from the likelihood of having to lie in order to gain access to HRT, i don’t feel like i ever have to say i’m binary trans in order to “justify transitioning”, as you put it, largely because in my case, i feel like the thing that people would see as unjustifiable would be the very act of “transitioning” in and of itself; having a binary gender wouldn’t circumnavigate that, even if it would make my gender arguably more “digestible” for others.
…i don’t know. i know that life in general is nothing but an endless series of crossroads, decisions, compromises and that that is true for anyone, but often there are scripts available or at least precedent for a lot of the crossroads that people find themselves faced with. when there is none– or at least, none in so far as you or anyone around you are aware of– all you can do is try your best, right? as hard as that is…