Minneapolis punks jimmy and bryan answer Razorcake readers’ concerns in Dear ACABby, an advice column for the rest of us. In this debut column, they wonder whether you can like boys too much for your own good and try to figure out what to do with the quintessential post-breakup impulse purchase. If you’d like them to tackle your question, you can email them at [email protected] and they’ll get back to you here at razorcake.org.
I am a non-binary femme who almost exclusively dates cis-men. Is this problematic? How can one subvert the gender binary in their personal identity only to reinforce it in their sexual preference?
—Boy Crazy Enby
Hi there BCE,
First of all, your desires do not exist to be politicized. You’re not “problematic” for being a person with a body with needs and desires just like anyone else. That said, I’ve been right there with you—as a trans man who mostly dates cis men (jimmy here), I’ve definitely caught myself wondering if there’s not something problematic lurking behind a crush. It’s healthy to examine your desires probably just as much so as it is to let them be.
When I get into this question in my own life, I try to ask myself a couple of questions: First, what attracts me to this person? What does my attraction to this person validate in me (for instance, when a gay/queer man is attracted to me, it validates my own identity as a gay man)? What doesn’t it validate in me?
Keeping in touch with yourself is about half the battle of having healthy relationships.
Basically, what makes this attraction feel good or bad? And the big one: Am I just worried about this because I think I should be worried about it? These are not just questions to ask when you’re worried about what kind of people you like, but in general it’s good to check in with yourself about this kind of thing—keeping in touch with yourself is about half the battle of having healthy relationships (crushes, flings, entanglements, etc).
It is important to remember, too, that real life doesn’t shake out along clean-cut, identitarian lines. Just because you’re mostly attracted to cis men now, doesn’t mean you always will be, and it certainly doesn’t mean anything about how “good” or “subversive” of a queer person you are.
In that vein, identity cannot stand in for action. Instead of focusing on the way your personal, specific, current sexual preference might or might not be subversive—you know, there will be straight people after the rev—worry about dismantling harmful effects of heteronormativity in yourself and around you. And, having healthy, meaningful relationships is more important than being the most radical queer in the room. Basically, don’t over think what feels good. At the end of the day, shame plays too big a role in our romantic relationships already. We hope you can give yourself a break on this one!
jimmy & bryan
What is the best way to rehome a turtle?
Oof. Maybe loving your new scaly friend will help empower you to open your heart again and move on. If not, there’s always Craigslist…
Real talk though, take good care of that turtle while you have it, absolutely don’t flush it down the toilet, and don’t forget there’s probably a shelter in your area that will take it if you can’t find a suitable place to rehome.
Take good care of that broken heart too,
jimmy & bryan
jimmy & bryan are two Minneapolis punks trying to figure out how to stick together in the long Minnesota winter. You can send them your advice inquiries at [email protected] and they’ll get back to you as soon as possible.