Wednesday, August 14, 2013

What I Mean & Why, Part 2a (Neuro, lead-in) by Ib Grace

Thanks to Cassandra on Twitter, I have this graphic to show some of the ace style ways of being queer in more detail, relating them to the Asexual Spectrum:

Huffington Post via AVENwiki, which I got via @CassandraB on Twitter.

But you can also note when looking at this that while the disclaimer says not all asexuals will identify with it, it also does include in the dotted lines, all sorts of people such as a sexual aromantic person, whom I would guess goes in for one night stands, unspecified gender attraction.  I have always liked the idea of homoromantic, thinking that my romantic love was more important than sex. I like chivalry.  I'm glad people started really using this concept and making it a Thing.  Not that I am not sex positive.

But another thing. Just because I am sex positive does not mean I think I am the sex police, and being sex positive does not mean I get to say everyone wants to have sex because that is part of the human condition.  What do I know about the human condition? I know about my own, and those of the people I listen to. So I should listen. That is my point here.  People have their own humanities and human conditions and ways to selve.

Here is another graphic provided to me by Corbett O'Toole which is inclusive of different divergences:
by Marillyn Anjos Agnoletto for AVEN
This one is more indicative of the ways people I know talk about asexuality, and includes fetishes, porn and self-love, as well as poly and pan, which reject gender binaries, going into more detail on that.

What are not on these particular graphics are ways to be trans*

Trans* is a way to be Queer.  I don't have a graphic of this, but please feel free to send them in, or better yet, Trans* folk, be a guest writer for this blog!

Trans* people can have any orientation there is.  So can genderqueer.  So here is my point and why I am still talking about queerness per se in the lead-up to how I am talking about the Neuro part of NeuroQueer:

The flagship way of being queer or sort of the inaugural way, or posterchild way, or whatever you want to call it, is to be gay or lesbian, and I am this, which gives me privilege of a relative sort.  It gives me the kind of privilege to where I could have chosen (if I were that kind of unfortunate person) to be one of these unctuous HRC slimeballs who thought it necessary to throw everyone else under the bus to assimilate, as if we never learned anything from Harvey Milk, may he rest in peace, even knowing this was done, may we reverse it and learn from it and stop doing this wrongness.

Because I will never use my privilege to be like that, and if I see my friends accidentally doing it, I will say, hey friends, you are accidentally doing a thing that is probably not what you meant to be doing, because this is what it is.  If you are at the top of the everloving ladder you do not kick that ladder down, you gather the people like you who have the muscle and luck that is relative privilege and you cement that ladder there, fortify it with some rebar, get the architects in and make it wider, that's what you do. You make it permanent, a fixture, safer and bigger.  With handlebars.  You draw plans for the elevator right away, a big giant elevator that creates jobs and leaves behind nobody.  That is what you do.

The Neurodiversity movement was invented because of Autistics, and the inaugural flagship posterchild whatever way of being neurodivergent is by being Autistic.  I am Autistic.  So get ready because I am going to go into more detailed detail about ways of being Neurodivergent historically and with a wide range, and I'm going to say why this is important, and I'm going to talk about coalition and handlebars and elevators and the whole lot of it, with a fiery passion.  You may be surprised by who counts as neurominorities according to me, and what I think follows from that but I'm nothing if not willing to explain myself and take my lumps and try again if my explanation isn't good enough.

Thanks for listening,


  1. I can't wait to hear about the coalition and handlebars and elevators!! Reading every word and hanging on ...

    1. It suddenly occurs to me that handlebars and handrails are not the same thing. I am just transportation-happy. Hehe.

  2. you are talking about me too! can't wait to read more and learn more about my relatively new realization and its importance to my identity.

    1. When you twirled and spun with me in the middle of the lobby in the hotel you have no idea how incredibly important that was to my continuing ever-growing joy in my own identity. I love you and am so glad you are here!

  3. One thing I've never understood is what the difference between romantic attraction (non-sexual) and friendship attraction is. I always thought "romantic" included sexual attraction, but obviously I've been misunderstanding this. (And I've given it *years* of thought, it isn't a new "I don't get it" because of the infographics...) Any thoughts?

    1. In many of the codes of Chivalry, romance was never ideally consummated even, and romantic love was separated from marital love. But more recently the love that can be consummated sexually and that which is romantic were merged socially. For some people, and some friendships, I am sure the experience of friendship is that intense and loving that it might be described as romantic, and thus confusion could ensue. For others the distinction would be easy to make in the friend-acquaintance continuum. I think this is a very personal area of life and drawing lines in it is for the people involved in each relation and only for them.

      There was once a person who said to me that they would still be OK with being in love with another someone and marrying them monogamously forever even if it turned out the person was totally asexual. To me this is a good indicator that the speaker has a fully romantic feeling for their beloved which would be separable from their other friendship feelings that this same speaker might have for say, me, the person being spoken to, a trusted friend but not someone with whom they are in love. Does this make sense? It is me guessing, let me hasten to add, because I am not the speaker, who is the only person I consider adequately qualified to make the distinction for real.

    2. Just speaking for myself there are things I will do with my partner that aren't sexual that I wont do with friends. A lot of that just involves committing to building a life together. It's hard to explain but I can tell that even though I love my best friend completely it's not romantic. I think the line is different for everyone.

      This has a lot of kinds of attractions broken down:

    3. Thanks for coming on here Cassandra! W00t! Feel free to write a guest column... hintity hint...

  4. I see your point (rather; I believe I do).

    As for those being "thrown under the bus for assimilation"; I think a hierarchy is followed with some more valued at other's expense with autistic advocacy. I've heard it suggested that the ones represented in the protest for "Nothing about us without us" are the best and brightest advocates. I wouldn't describe it in the same way. That description honors a value system which needs challenging.

    I believe though that much, if not most, of what motivates the unfair discrimination, elitism, and bigotry in the society being challenged is echoed in the very advocacy movements presenting the challenge. I haven't witnessed any such movements, which I consider operating with much more inclusive and fairer standards. Based on my experience, I would include the Neurodiversity or Autistic movement as one that operates this way.

    I understand how Autistics (capitol A) have the privilege you refer to. The majority aren't involved in any movement, and much that's promoted isn't welcoming. Most are autistics (without the capitol A) and could benefit from a movement but not much can be gained from one that supports the society's exclusive ideals which need challenging.

    1. I think we are of a very similar mind, Ed. Which is a compliment to me. I hope you like the other stuff I have to say about it too when I get more of my other work done and get a chance :)

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