taiWelcome! I’m Tai Fenix Kulystin, a somatic sexuality educator, occultist, professional harlot, and gender & relationships coach. This blog is my personal exploration of gender, sexuality, spirituality, kink, and the pitfalls of an overanalytical nature.

I identify as a queer fat genderqueer polyamorous switch and my pronouns are they/them or any neutral pronouns. I spend a lot of my time studying sacred sexuality, sacred kink, relationships, the body, queer theory, depth psychology, archetypes, mythology, erotic neurobiology, sexological bodywork, and so much more. I'm in a long-term live-in relationship with my partner Onyx, and I also have a few other relationships and lovers.
Read more about this site & me→

Archive for the ‘Sexuality’



Fun Facts About the Clitoris

Also via Feministing from right here. Most of you may know this already, but, hey, it doesn’t hurt to get good information again, right?

An Australian urologist, Dr Helen O’Connell, has revealed that the clitoris is shaped more like a mountain than a hill.
That’s right, the clitoris is a large, vast, and wonderful thing. It’s not just a bulb with a small visible nub as previously thought, it actually is pyramid-shaped and wraps around all over.

Of course, early anatomists dismissed the clitoris, which is common of female anatomy as well as anything having to do with females in the medical field. Because of this, the discovery of the expanse and wonder of the clitoris has not been medically proven before.

Some choice exerpts from the story, though I encourage you to read the entire story anyway:

“The vaginal wall is, in fact, the clitoris,” said Dr O’Connell, who is based in Melbourne. “If you lift the skin off the vagina on the side walls, you get the bulbs of the clitoris – triangular, crescental masses of erectile tissue.”

“There’s nothing quite like the shape of a clitoris,” she said… The bulk of it is shaped like a pyramid.

Its base forms the external genitalia or vulva; its triangular “walls” are wrapped around the urine-carrying tube known as the urethra and the vagina.

Also found via Feministing from right here, Betty Dodson draws and informes about the internal structure of the clitoris. It gave me a better idea than the image above did regarding the internal structure, and I think it’s definitely worth watching if you will ever interact with female anatomy.

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In Case You're Hiding Under a Rock Somewhere

You all are, no doubt, tired of hearing about same-sex marriage passing in the California supreme court by now (though who would be tired of hearing about something as wonderful of this, you say? Good question!). However, I will make this short and sweet and just want to send out happiness of all types to all those who have and will participate in the California legalization of gay marriage

Also, the country newly near and dear to my heart (remember: Master’s from there and we just went there in May for a few weeks), Norway legalized same-sex marriages. Previously, Norway had civil partnerships, but did not have the right to church weddings or to be considered as adoptive parents. There are wonderful things going on for marriage equality everywhere!

Now, personally, I think these examples of marriage equality are wonderful, and I believe that marriage is a wonderful declaration of love between two people. I always tear up at weddings, I can’t deny that. I think that any commitment ceremony is beautiful, and I think that it is wonderful that people of the same sex can now marry each other 100% legally with all the same rights and privileges as other sex marriages.

That said, I do have some problems with marriage. It is by and large a religious institution of a religion I am not associated with. I’m not against the idea of a legal contract between two (or more) consenting adults for child and/or tax purposes and things like that. However, calling it marriage (a religious term) and making it basically mandatory for other sex couples who live together for a certain amount of time (as it varies between states) is just ridiculous.

Personally, I don’t intend to get married, possibly ever, though I may be forced into one of those common law marriages at some point, or I would get married to Master if/when we move to Europe (thereby making me a citizen of Norway and making it much easier for me to move over there). Or, if we were to have children I would probably marry him, though I’m not sure that will ever happen. I just don’t believe in the institution of marriage, nor do I think it is necessary for me, except in the above mentioned circumstances.

I used to say I wouldn’t have an other sex marriage before same sex marriages were legal, and, well, that’s not completely true yet, but it’s definitely getting closer. I still wouldn’t do so until it’s legal all over the states, except for the moving to Europe scenario. My other problem with marriage is that it is confined to two people. Although I do not want marriage for myself, I would like consensual adult polyamorous marriage to be a reality, and I think it will someday, just not for quite some time.

However, legalization of same sex marriage in California is also reason number one billion six hundred fifty eight thousand and one to move to San Francisco. Just counting down until 2009, now.

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Review: Waterproof Wabbit Vibe

I just submitted my review of the Waterproof Wabbit Vibe on Eden Fantasys.

This is a vibe I’ve had for years and which I love dearly. While it’s no Rabbit Pearl (featured on Sex and the City and the most well-known rabbit vibrator) the only major difference is the lack of pearls and spinning of the internal shaft.

The Wabbit, however, can be taken into the bath, and for those who prefer clitoral stimulation (such as me) it still has the wonderful bunny ears which have been known to get me off multiple times (read: 60+) in a day. Read my review here and check out my reviewer profile.

Sex toys - EdenFantasys adult toys store
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Review: Remote Controlled Butterfly

Just published my first review on Eden Fantasys! It’s on the Remote Controlled Butterfly which I absolutely adore.

I’ve had the toy for a while, but didn’t get to really try it out until Master and I went on our trip. I talked about it in this post (the remote to it was passed around, if you remember that?) and it was wonderful.

Read my review! My reviewer profile is up as well!

Sex toys - EdenFantasys adult toys store
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Spilling Over: A Fat, Queer Anthology

Something I’m thinking about writing a piece for, I’ll have to come up with a suitable idea first, but it would be something I could do. I don’t talk a lot about size issues in this blog, though I have been thinking about them more and more lately, and reading more fat/size-oriented blogs like Femme FATale (among others). The call for submissions was found on her blog:

Call for Submissions

Working Title: Spilling Over: A Fat, Queer Anthology
Contact: spillingover@gmail.com
Submission Deadline: December 1, 2008

Despite the attention given by queer studies to the materiality of bodies and the cultural and social inscriptions that designate them, still a dearth of both scholarship and literature exists around intersections of gender, sexuality, and fatness. As fat studies begins to emerge as a viable academic location of inquiry, questions surface as to how fat bodies, deemed “excessive” in their trespasses of size and space, create even more complex subject positions when compounded by queer desires. This proposed anthology seeks contributions addressing junctions of “fat” and “queer” in pieces that consider the representations and resistances of non-normative corporeality and also writings considering the theoretical conceptions of these intricate subjectivities. Spilling Over will reflect the notions of excess, boundaries, and containment implied by the labels “fat” and “queer” both singularly and collectively. In the form of scholarly writing and creative non-fiction pieces, essay submissions might consider (but are not limited to):

* theorizing the concept of “excess” as it pertains to fatness and queerness
* fat and queer identities; personal narratives; reclaiming “fat” and “queer”
* notions of (in)visibility, hypervisibility, and passing and/or privilege
* intersections of race, class, gender, sexuality, ethnicity, (dis)ability, age, and religion
* the economics of the obesity “epidemic” and the diet industry
* fat, queer art and performance; performativity
* pleasure, sex-positivity, eroticizing non-normative bodies
* acceptance movements, political activism, resistance
* the engagement of feminism with fatness
* global, transnational, transcultural constructions of fat, queer bodies and lives
* critical reflections of fatness and queerness in media, literature, film, music, and visual arts
* the rhetoric of fat oppression, fatphobia, homophobia, transphobia, bigotry, responding to and/or addressing hate speech

By December 1, 2008, please send your 2,000 – 6,000 word submission, along with your complete contact information and a 50-100 word biography, to spillingover@gmail.com with the subject line of “Spilling Over – Submission.” Submissions must be received in 12 point Times New Roman font and sent in via Word documents (PDFs will not be accepted). Pieces will be reviewed and decisions made by April 2009. Please note that accepted submissions will be approved on a tentative basis, pending editorial board approval once the anthology has secured a publisher.

Questions can be directed to me at spillingover@gmail.com or visit the MySpace page at www.myspace.com/spillingoveranthology

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Some days I have very little to say D/s wise, and on these days I’m quiet.

I’m working on a paper for my Queer Theory class exploring BDSM, which should be interesting. I’m having a very hard time narrowing down a concept. I’m thinking of exploring gender, using Venus in Furs and Secretary, or possibly Venus in Furs and a scene which I will describe. Another option is marriage and BDSM, I know quite a few Dommes and male subs who won’t participate in it due to the misogyny associated with it, and since it pretty much goes the opposite of their roles, similarly, in ViF Wanda asserts that she could never marry someone who was subordinate to her, if she was to marry it would be to a Dominant man. I also know many female subs who want to get married to their Dom. And then there’s me…

Other than that… marriage would be easy to do, but I’m not sure if I could write twelve pages on it, though… possibly. I may add marriage into a paper on gender, and I could add something on gender supremacy within BDSM and also some things I’ve already talked about in here.

My Prof. agreed that basically at this point the hardest part for me will be narrowing down a topic. I think I just need to choose one and run with it, but there is so much that I would like to explore. Whatever I do I’ll end up posting it here, to be sure. It’s two weeks from the end of the semester, so I may be quite absent these next two weeks.

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Try to love the questions themselves, like locked rooms and like books written in a foreign language

Do you enjoy being spanked?
I definitely do, especially long ones that start with a warming up with the hand, then move to the flogger, then to the strap, then to the cane, or some combination of such. I love being spanked by hand, and by the flogger, the strap… not so much, but when it’s in sequence and I’ve been adequately worked up, then that’s okay, but that’s the instrument which Master usually uses as punishment, too, since he knows that I hate it. Funnily enough, I love the cane. I mean, don’t get me wrong, I hate the thing sometimes, and it is also used as punishment sometimes, but I love the feeling of it versus the strap, even though it’s painful and not pleasant all the time, but often it is.
I’ve always had a thing for spanking, as well, I love the just plain dominance of it, the acquiescing, the submitting that has to occur on my part. Being taken and punished, even, although not fun, is a wonderful feeling of being owned and loved. But also just being taken and played with in the sense of knowing that he could do what he wanted to me with the aim of pain and pleasure.

Have you ever given a spanking?
I’ve spanked many times, but I wouldn’t say I’ve given a spanking. That is, I’ve done a lot of playful butt slapping with friends, and some hard playful butt slapping, but I’ve never been in the position of taking someone and spanking them in the manner I’ve described above.

Do you have tattoos?
I do. I currently have eight, and have many more planned.
Currently I have (in chronological order, from oldest to newest):
a stylized heart on my left breast, a small cancer (zodiac) symbol on my right breast with purple around it, on my right thigh bettie page by olivia “don’t tread on me” or what I call “licking the whip” she’s all in red with fishnets and heeled boots with a red crop in her hand lifted to her mouth and licking it, what I call “lovers entwined” between my breasts, a small aries (zodiac) symbol behind my left ear with red around it, elvgrin’s pinup witch on my right calf, a heart-shaped padlock on my right wrist which looks like it goes into my skin, and a key with heart-shaped handle on my left wrist (which Master has an identical tattoo of on his wrist).
Ones I have planned:
a virgo (zodiac) symbol surrounded by “silver” aka gray on my right hip-ish area; an om symbol (with purple accents) inside a red star of babalon on my left wrist (I have an icon of this in ); another rendering of bettie which is her in the middle with a leopard on one side and a snake on the other, it’s awesome, and I love it and it’s perfect! I was thinking of having it on my chest, but I’m not sure anymore, maybe my upper back; babalon riding the beast on my back or possibly thigh depending on the image I decide on; a submissive pinup (probably bound) on my left thigh mirroring my rather Domme-ish Bettie; a varga girl (not sure which) on my left calf mirroring my elvgren; backseams such as would be seen on old-type pantyhose which look like small corset lacing; a bdsm emblem somewhere perhaps made of tigerlilys (instead of roses, which is usually seen); possibly handcuffs (not sure where) with a rose peeking through them; possibly a gothic faerie; possibly many other things…

What is something you fear?
I have a few phobias, specifically bugs, I hate bugs. Currently we have bed bugs infesting our house and I have learned not to think about them as a way to survive, I had two panic attacks when we first realized we had them. It was horrible.
Another fear is pretty common, that of rejection. I think everyone has it to some extent, and some more than others. In me it’s pretty big, I don’t venture out of my social circle much, and I don’t really try to get to know new people but will generally but not specifically, if that makes sense. I also have deep wounds in that area, just in general, though I’m sure many many others do as well, but this one I’m working on as best I can.

Has your Sir changed/expanded any of your limits.. if so what? and how?
Hmm, that’s a good question. Not really, I’ve been pretty aware of what my limits are for quite some time, and we haven’t done much play with my limits, also I don’t really have many outside of general relationship ones and some of the usuals. There are many things I would do that I don’t particularly like, but I don’t consider them to be limits, and Master and I generally like a lot of the same things and dislike a lot of the same things, so it works out rather well for us. I’d like to do more play with things that could become limits, such as experimenting with different play which I never have, such as electricity, extreme humiliation and degradation (we’ve done a little, but not much), and such, but thus far we haven’t really changed or expanded any of my limits (though, I have become a little more lax on my tickling hard limit, but just for accidental tickling).

Describe your most intense, enjoyable sexual experience:
Hmm… I’ve had a few, though most intense and most enjoyable do vary in some ways, and I tend to get mush for brains during the really good ones. I’ll list a few (in chronological order):
With my previous partner we were having phone sex at one point while I was still living at home, though I was alone in the house at the time. I was playing with a toy and we were whispering and groaning naughty nothings to each other. He counted every time I came, and we got to about 48 in that one hour and a half or so. Earlier that day we had phone sex as well and I had come about 11 times, and then twice in between with him. All in all it was around 61 times, and I say around because this wasn’t necessarily exact, but I came somewhere around there. I was very sore the next day.
On Master’s birthday, the first one we were together for, he gave me his birthday spankings and then proceeded to fuck me senseless, including making me cum until I begged him to stop. We weren’t counting that time, but it was definitely in the double-digits and probably no less than 25 or 30.
One spring break (I think it was spring break) my friend Katie and I went up to Portland and Master and I were still in a LDR at that point. He said he could fly to Portland for the night, however, and so he did. We got a hotel room at the Days Inn I believe, which had a king sized bed and a jacuzzi. We did all manner of fucking, including in the jacuzzi which had mirrors around it. He fucked me from behind and we could watch both of us while we were fucking due to the mirrors, it was wonderful. He fucked my ass that night, as well, and then woke me up the next morning with an ass-fucking. I was so sore, but it was so wonderful.
Getting the Hitachi just the other day was pretty damn intense, and the most intense I’ve had recently. It’s a different kind of orgasm than I’m used to, I haven’t used a toy in quite some time, and it was kind of akin to that first instance mentioned above, within which I came 48 times in one sitting. There were some definite orgasm crests but for the most part I was just awash in constant near-orgasm pleasure, which was almost more intense than just a short burst. I’ll write more on this later.

Whats the biggest thing you’ve ever had in your ass?
I’m not honestly sure, actually. I don’t really go for size or stretching, I enjoy to be fucked rather than plugged and I’ve never been fisted anally. Possibly my silicone dildo, as it’s longer but about the same thickness as Master’s cock. My ex (mentioned above) had a damn thick cock near the base (it was kind of triangle-y, very interesting looking) but I’m not sure how much of that actually went in, I don’t think he actually fucked my ass, though we tried, but… it was a weird situation. I’ve had lots of odd small things up my ass, but like I said, I’m more about the sensation than stretching.

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Heterosexual Guilt

I suffer from heterosexual guilt. I am currently with a man (as most/all of you know), and I feel guilty for the privilege that affords me. I desire women more, have always desired women more, but I happen to have fallen in love with a man. Deeply, passionately in love. He’s heteroflexible, basically, but not interested in the queer community, though he loves my activist side he is not an activist himself.

I feel like I’m cheating on my lesbian desires and I’m cheating and gaining privilege from being with him. I almost forget what it’s like to be with a woman. We’re poly, so I have that chance afforded to me, and happily I would take it were I to meet someone who that situation would be acceptable for, and I have little doubt that Kat and I will do things, as that situation is acceptable to her, but I want more.

In an odd way, I feel like I should be marginalized, because I’m queer and I feel I should be, because I generally prefer women.

Back to writing my paper on femme as a trans identity. It rocks, and I am going to post it once I’m done.

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The Importance of Identity Politics and How They Have Shaped the Queer Rights Movement

Ever since the academic appearance of the concept of homosexuality in 1869 homosexuals and others with non-normative sexual orientations and non-normative genders have been studied and attempted to be defined (Faderman, 41). Many different definitions and labels have been produced to appeal to different factions of non-normative sexual identities, some of which have been taken from slurs and taunts as a means to empower them that reclaim it. Identities and labels of those who claim non-normative sexual orientations help people fit in within society as well as within groups. It is nearly impossible to escape a label in this society.

Some claim, however, that labels based on gender and sexual orientation are imprisoning, and reduce people into one state of being instead of recognizing the complexities of individuals. Through exploration of labels of the past, and examining the current evolution of labels, I shall show the importance of labels within the queer rights movement. Labels, while potentially restrictive, are a necessary catalyst for the advancing of queer rights, because by defining and choosing our labels we are then able to deconstruct and, later, abolish those labels.

When the term “homosexual” was first defined it was labeled both as a gender deviance or a sexual partner preference deviance, depending on the sexologist doing the labeling. In 1897 the label of sexual inversion was given to homosexuals by Havlock Ellis, with which he categorized homosexuals into several different and distinct categories. Ellis was ahead of his time in several ways: he was the first to attempt to categorize homosexuals into distinct classifications, and the first to talk of homosexuality as a permanent identity, which was not widely accepted until the 1920s (Ellis, 122).

“Homosexual” is seen as a clinical term, first used by scientists and psychologists, and while it has been used widely since its inception, the term was put onto those who were deemed homosexuals, not chosen by homosexuals for themselves. Pejorative terms such as fairy, fag, queer, and dyke also have questionable beginnings and lineage. Though, often the people on whom those terms were being applied chose to turn around and embrace them, disempowering their impact by wearing them proudly like a badge.

Before 1973 homosexuality was considered a psychological disorder by the American Psychological Association (APA) and was included in their Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of mental disorders (DSM) (D’Emilio 13). In 1973 it was removed from the DSM but was replaced by ego-dystonic homosexuality in 1980. Ego-dystonic homosexuality was not simply characterized by having homosexual desires, but by having unwanted homosexual desires, which were interfering with the normal heterosexual desires you were “supposed” to be having. This newer disorder of ego-dystonic homosexuality was later taken out of the DSM in 1986, and no disorders regarding homosexuality remain in the DSM today (Herek). The terms gay and lesbian have more personal resonance within the queer movement than the term homosexual because they were not developed within an academic rhetoric and are not associated with the “pathological” disorder of homosexuality.

‘Gay’ and ‘lesbian’ have no specific date of origin, but did not come into common mainstream usage until around the 1970s and the beginning of the queer rights movement (then the gay rights movement), though they had been around for many years before that. The labels for deviant sexual orientations throughout the years since the beginning of the modern gay movement have changed significantly. Starting out simply gay and lesbian, becoming broader and more inclusive with lesbian, gay, and bisexual, then gender was added into the mix with lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender, and then come the micro labels which are in common usage today: lesbian, gay, bisexual, omnisexual, pansexual, sapiosexual, transgender, transsexual, transvestite, cross-dresser, cisgender, genderqueer, gender bender, asexual, ally, queer, intersexed, intergendered, questioning, unsure, same gender loving, men who have sex with men, women who have sex with women, two-spirited, etc. The semantics of the movement are slowly moving toward using a catch-all umbrella term—queer—to encompass all of these terms and more. This progression is extremely important, in relationship to the progression of the queer movement.

Micro-identities, for the purpose of this paper, are more defined and specific, and relate to a larger, more well-known or mainstream identity. Dyke, butch, and femme are all micro-identities of lesbian identity just as fag, queen, and macho are all micro-identities of gay identity. Micro-identities have been a part of queer identities since the early 20th century when identities regarding sexual orientation became commonplace. There have always been different terms (Ellis, 22; Faderman, 59). Today individuals within the queer movement are choosing and creating micro-identities which define their own distinctive selves. People are coming up with relatively new terms such as “sapiosexual” or simply stringing a number of micro-identities together to create one identity such as “bio-female omnisexual genderqueer femme drag queen,” instead of simply choosing broad identities such as gay, lesbian, or bisexual.

While identifying with a term can help to claim a part of the self, such terms can also become stifling and limiting in their definitions. The more defined and specific the label is the more restricting and imposing the label becomes. Once one claims an identity they are then often seen as only having that identity, and not given room to maneuver within or outside of it. Should someone claim a micro-identity which is slightly difficult to outwardly express, such as the example above, they are often put into categories by those who observe them which do not fit their own self-identity. By only being seen as one of potentially multiple identities a person is only seen as a fraction of themselves, or by not having their identity recognized by others, that person may be seen as someone they are not. In this society and many others there are very strict ideas of how a person is supposed to look or behave depending on their culturally perceived identity, which is extremely limiting both for people who do and do not fit into their perceived identity (Third World Gay Revolution and Gay Liberation Front 297).

The sexual orientation identities of gay and lesbian are often tangled with a gender stereotype, and there is no way to untangle them (Third World Gay Revolution and Gay Liberation Front 297). The gender identification which is stereotypically related to gays or lesbians is often that of the culturally “wrong” or “incorrect” gender, that is, masculine females for lesbians and feminine males for gay men. With the assumption of the socially correct gender comes the assumption of the socially correct sexual orientation, that is, a “real” masculine male must only be attracted to a “real” feminine female, and visa versa. When the sexual orientation is non-normative, the gender assumption is as well. However, “gender identity, being entirely artificial, has little to do with sexual orientation, this is another way gay oppression is used to keep people in line” (297). While gender deviance and non-normative sexual orientations can be linked in many people, there are also many people who have the socially correct gender presentation while still having a non-normative sexual orientation.

Foucault and other post-modernists claim that through the construction of these identities we are taught ways in which to not only police others to see if they fit into these categories, but also to police ourselves. We must consider, at every moment, what sort of presentation we are giving, if our body and mannerisms are aligning with our supposed gender or not. Because of this self-policing and the sense of permanent visibility of our selves to ourselves, to others, and to society, conformity, and specifically in this case gender conformity, is possible and also encouraged (Wilchins, 69).

Through this idea of self policing we are also able to see how gender roles and identities are socially constructed. Without the constant pressure of society to conform into these gender roles, we would all simply do as we chose. According to Foucault, there was a shift around the historical period of the Enlightenment which moved the ideas of purity and decency from simply decency of acts to decency of thoughts and desires as well, even if they were never acted upon. Since then this has permeated society, we are taught that even our thoughts must be controlled and proper, and this includes our ideas about hetero- and homosexuality as well as what gender we must express and when and where it is acceptable to act in certain ways. This idea of self-policing extends identities which are non-normative, any identity which has a stereotype associated with it, including gay, lesbian, bisexual, transgender, and so on, is subject to self-policing. This is another reason for the expansion into micro identities, especially those which are not widely known or not stereotyped. Without a stereotype that we must fall into we are free to act as we choose.

What the queer rights movement is expanding toward currently is back to a generalizing term that can encompass all gender deviance and sexual orientations while still encouraging individualistic micro identities. It is the youth within the movement who are embracing the term “queer” and working toward the very post-modern idea of abolishing labels. The ideas behind the queer rights movement are becoming more post-modern in theory and activist practice. Breaking down of all the micro-labels into one overarching label of “queer” or simply saying “don’t label me,” which is another strong movement within queer youth, are both ways which the youth of today are deconstructing the idea of labels, and getting to a point of potential abolishment.

When either sexual orientation or gender identity are non-normative, the expression of these non-normative identities works on breaking down the assumed gender roles and assumed heteronormativity of our society. This is accomplished through simply the ability to have a gender identity or sexual orientation which is out of the norm and thus subversive. This confronts other’s mainstream ideas about sexuality and sexual orientation. In this way, the production of micro-identities and labeling down to a fine very specific and individualistic detail allows for not only a wider array of people to consider themselves part of this deviant sexual culture but also for a broader idea of those within the queer culture and queer rights movement. Getting down to these almost nit picky identities and dividing the community into these micro-identities allows for the community to solidify across identities and to form a major movement in which everyone is represented.

Just as in order for someone to come up with the idea of post-modernism society first had to have modernism, in order to work toward abolishing labels in the context of gender and sexual orientation identities we have to define those labels within the queer community. “As Judy Grahn said, “If anyone were allowed to fall in love with anyone, the word ‘homosexual’ wouldn’t be needed”” (Third World Gay Revolution and Gay Liberation Front 289). And so, to work towards that ideal future where these labels and terms for “alternative” and “deviant” sexual orientations are not needed, we first had to go through the process of finding those labels and painstakingly dividing ourselves into neat little categories before we are able to tear down those ideas and live without inequalities. There is a long road to go before all deviant sexual orientations and gender identities find themselves accepted by the mainstream, but labeling and deconstruction are both working toward that, just as the queer rights movement is as a whole.

Works Cited
D’emilio, John. “After Stonewall.” Queer Cultures. Ed. Deborah Carlin and Jennifer Digrazia. Upper Saddle River, New Jersey: Prentice Hall, 2004. 3-37.
Ellis, Havelock. “A More or Less Distinct Trace of Masculinity.” Engendering America: a Documentary History, 1865 to the Present. Comp. Muncy Robin and Michel Sonya. McGraw-Hill College, 1999. 122-125.
Faderman, Lillian. Odd Girls and Twilight Lovers: a History of Lesbian Life in Twentieth-Century America. New York: Penguin, 1991.
Third World Gay Revolution and Gay Liberation Front. “The Imprisoning and Artificial Labels of Gay, Straight, and Bi.” Engendering America: a Documentary History, 1865 to the Present. Comp. Muncy Robin and Michel Sonya. McGraw-Hill College, 1999. 296-298.
Wilchins, Riki. Queer Theory, Gender Theory. Los Angeles: Alyson Books, 2004.

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The question of bisexuality comes back to the question of sexuality in general, and if queer sexualities are made or innate or a third option. In the study of male arousal the conclusion was that, by genital arousal alone, there is no such thing as bisexuality. This also brings up the question of what constitutes a sexual orientation. Are bisexuals people who are only physically aroused by one body type but who are mentally aroused or desirous or emotionally bonded to other body types, or who are indiscriminatory as to the type of body their lover has. If we can learn to be attracted to different body types for whatever reason, doesn’t that mean that everyone could be bisexual? Is it just mental blocks which keep people from being bisexual?

The issues around the term and existence of bisexuality as outlined in (Con)tested Identities are ones which I have muddled around in my brain for quite some time. I am currently with a male partner, though, over the last ten years or so (ever since I had a conscious thought about sexual orientation) I have identified as anywhere from lesbian to bisexual. At the same time, I wouldn’t ascribe to him strictly a masculine gender. A further question: how does gender play into sexual orientation? Is it all about bodies? What about a bisexual who only likes the masculine gender, regardless of body? Would ze be bisexual but monogendered? Do we really need to dig that far into it anyway?

How does bisexual sexual orientation change dependent on the relationship the person is in at the time? I happen to have a female (sort of) lover as well, does that mean that I am a “real” bisexual while others may not be because they practice monogamy? I noticed how this isn’t exactly addressed, though the ideas of promiscuity and fidelity are. Does it make a difference that my partner is also bisexual? Does it matter?

I too have felt distanced from the queer community when I mention I have a male partner, though I don’t openly admit to my polyamory. I use the term partner freely but have caught myself saying “boyfriend” at work instead and realize my aims at using the term, the ability I have to use heteronormative terms to quell the question that my using partner arises. Is this wrong of me? I am invoking heterosexual privilege because I can. I am acting like the bisexual threat to queerness perhaps.

From (Con)tested Identities: “dissatisfaction with existing labels results in the development and exploration of the utility of alternative labels, for example… “pansexual,” “polyamorous” and “polysexual.” A number of other participants also discuss variously using alternate terms like “hetero-flexible,” “gender freak” and “gender non-specific.” This made me think of a couple things, to be explored. The last town I lived in, alternate terms such as pansexual or multisexual were well known in the queer community, however, when I moved here I’ve been asked what I mean when I say pansexual or multisexual or (my personal favorite and invention) intellisexual (which I generally explain before I even have the chance to be asked—attracted to minds not bodies), I was also told “I’ve only heard one other person use that term.” This may just be because that was Southern Oregon (Ashland) and this is Utah, and I think that plays a large part in it, but even in the queer community it is unknown, and this makes me wonder.

Where and how do these ideas travel? Are they simply word of mouth, are they by academic literature such as we are reading? Are they through taking queer oriented classes and questioning? How does the queer community thrive? How are do discursive identities spread?

Also the quote: “And, the irony is that in a second I would bring my girlfriend to, you know, straight events and it’s like, you know, this is, this is my girlfriend, deal with it. Like I’m so ready to do that. But so not ready to like bring a man to a gay function and say this is my boyfriend, deal with it. (PI6)” From what I’ve revealed I would assume it’s obvious where this hits home for me. For the first time in my life, really, I am in a solid relationship with a male which is the longest of my life, and I am also feeling uncomfortable in queer situations. For the first year after I moved here I was rather avoidant of getting into queer situations (bad term), and still rather am. I was the president of the student union at my previous university and the founder of the GSA at my high school, and yet now I’m worried to attend queer events?

Is this simply something in me now? I think part of it is. I feel ashamed that I’m with a male, yet claim intellisexuality or multisexuality or queerness in general. My lesbian butch dyke sister calls herself queer, can I claim the same identity, or is that blasphemous? I really do feel that I am in the middle, unsure of what I can and cannot claim, though knowing that I don’t want to claim heterosexuality, though I jokingly will say that I’m “half heterosexual.”

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