b. reid lewis

activist, technologist, writer

"Queer not as being about who you're having sex with (that can be a dimension of it); but queer as being about the self that is at odds with everything around it and has to invent and create and find a place to speak and to thrive and to live."
bell hooks


Introduction

This is a page of resources I've put together to help educate folks on my queer identity. If you're not sure what queer, trans, or non-binary mean, check out the definitions section before jumping to the resources.

You might also want to check out my blog posts Coming Out Queer and Coming Out a Second Time for a more personal view of my experience in those moments.

tl;dr

  • Reid is my chosen name, and if that's the name you've been given in the context of knowing me, please use it
  • words I use for myself are queer, non-binary, genderqueer, and trans - I do not like the term enby used for myself
  • my pronouns are they/them/their
  • an acceptable honorific is Mx.
  • ommer is a genderqueer term that can be used in place of aunt/uncle that I like
  • don't use gendered language for me, including honorifics, pronouns, and familial terms which connotate someone being a man or woman - this includes when speaking about me in the past, before my name and pronouns changed

Definitions

These definitions, while used by many, are specific to my identity and my experience. Not everyone will agree with these. Please respect people's own language and definitions for themselves.

queer

Queer is an umbrella term and identity that feels most comfortable to me because it acknowledges both whom I am attracted to, as well as my queer gender. It's expansive and not constraining. It communicates that I'm not part of the assumed modern societal default of being cisgender and heterosexual. While queer was once primarily used as a slur, it has been reclaimed by many in the LGBTQIAP+ community.

bisexual / pansexual

While many folks think of bisexual as being attracted to both men and women, I consider it being attracted to those of a similar gender as well as genders different from my own. Pansexual often is defined as being attracted to many or all genders. While I prefer the term queer for myself, I sometimes use bisexual or pansexual for myself as well.

non-binary

Non-binary is both an umbrella term and a gender identity, and some people see it as falling under the transgender umbrella. It can mean a lot of differrent things, including being not exclusively male or female (the gender binary), not having a gender at all, or having a gender outside of the gender binary spectrum. Folks who are non-binary may or may not consider themselves transgender. I consider myself non-binary.

genderqueer

Genderqueer is similar to non-binary in that it can be both an umbrella term and a gender identity. Generally it is used by folks in the LGBTQ+ community who feel that they have a queer experience with their gender, though the meaning can be specific to each person. While I didn't initially feel a connection with the term, I now do, and consider myself genderqueer.

transgender

Trans and cis are Latin prefixes. Generally, if you are transgender, it means you do not identify with the gender you were assigned at birth. If you are cisgender, it means you do identify with the gender you were assigned at birth. The trans/cis binary is also an imperfect framework that exists within binary colonial ideas, and is not in fact a hard and fast rule. It is a common framework, however, and can help communicate in a very basic way aspects of ones experience of gender. I consider myself transgender.

pronouns

Pronouns are words used to refer to people, such as he/him/his, she/her/her, or they/them/their. Pronouns can sometimes give you possible clues about someone's gender, but they are not the same as gender. You can be genderqueer and use he/him. You can be non-binary and use she/her. And yes, singular they is a thing and has a long history in the English language. There are also neo pronouns. I use they/them/their pronouns.

Resources

Pronouns

Gender

Books

Podcasts