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Author Topic: Pansexual  (Read 4780 times)

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Offline Will

Re: Pansexual
« Reply #50 on: March 29, 2011, 02:00:06 AM »
I think what you're describing isn't gender, actually, but sex.  Your sex is anatomical, your gender is mental.

I fail to see any reason to worry about what someone self-identifies as.  It doesn't affect anyone else, so why bother?

Offline Reia

Re: Pansexual
« Reply #51 on: April 04, 2011, 03:49:15 PM »
When it comes down to it, it doesn't matter how you think about yourself or how you feel, there are two genders.  Male and female.  If you feel like a guy but you're a girl, it doesn't change the fact that you have a vagina.  Again, gender can be a very complicated issue, and I understand that, but medically and anatomically, you are either a man or a woman (or both, but that's rare).

You say you support LGBT rights, but you make a blanket statement like this? I'm sorry, but I know plenty of people in the LGBT community who would be insulted by this. I can understand what you're trying to say, but you're really don't seem to understand what having/being another gender is about. There are people that identify has not having a gender. Some that identify as both. Some as something else completely.

Regardless of a person's personality or looks, they are always going to be either a man or a woman, so isn't that the same thing?

And again, no there aren't just two genders. You're really missing the point.

Overall, yes, I agree that pansexuals seem to have a superiority complex, and I just don't understand the difference between pansexual and bisexual in the sense that they're both attracted to both genders (ergo, everyone).

I'm pansexual and I don't have a superiority complex. I don't think my sexual orientation/preferences is/are better or superior to yours or anyone else's.

For me (and I'm going to emphasize the me part of this, no two people are exactly the same) being pansexual is being attracted to people regardless of gender. That doesn't mean I completely ignore their gender, however. If I meet someone and I click with them and I like who they are and find myself attracted to them great. If they end up telling me that although they look like a guy the feel as if they don't have a fixed-binary gender, great. Or that they know they are really a girl, great. I'll still be attracted to them. I'll be attracted to their personality, their male-but-should-be-female-body, the fact that they like to stay up late watching black and white movies just like me, the awesome color of their eyes, etc.

Offline Star Safyre

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Re: Pansexual
« Reply #52 on: April 05, 2011, 03:12:34 PM »
I'm bisexual, and I questioned whether I was pansexual.  Ultimately it came down to one question for me: am I attracted to femininity/masculinity or am I attracted to a person regardless of any gender related traits?

My answer was that, regardless of a person's self-identified gender, I either found them attractive for their feminine features or their masculine features.  I like feminine women and masculine men.  I find women and transpersons attractive for masculinity, and I find men and transpersons attractive for their femininity.  Regardless of gender, my instincts of attraction seemed to naturally view beautiful people all genders as being attractive in a feminine or masculine way.  I'm yet to encounter someone I found attractive that my mind did not peg as beautiful as feminine or beautiful as masculine.

I acknowledge and admire people who live outside gender binary, but I know my own sense of attraction is very much binary in nature.  Now these attractions are unattached to a person's gender or sex, and I have no issues at all when their identified gender or sex do not match the either feminine or masculine traits I enjoy about them.  While there is a detachment for me between physical sex, mental gender, and the masculine or feminine traits I find attractive, I do not think I am entirely gender-blind when it comes to attraction.  I don't place any moral or ethical value on this; I merely recognize it as part of my own sexuality.

Offline NoelleTopic starter

Re: Pansexual
« Reply #53 on: April 05, 2011, 04:53:34 PM »
That's an interesting description, Star. There are a lot of gender stereotypes that could stand to be broken, but essentially, there are certain traits (at least physically) that are considered quintessentially masculine or feminine. It's a weird angle to speak from, but as an artist, they are distinctions that are taught in figure drawing in order to portray someone as more masculine or feminine. More pronounced jawlines, broader foreheads, pronounced noses...these are things that are more masculine. This isn't to say that women can't have some of these features and it does not make them less of a woman because of it, but we do make associations based on an average.

I recognize that there is a broad spectrum of gender identities, but I think you worded it exactly like I was trying to get at for myself -- I'm attracted to the masculine or the feminine; androgyny does not appeal to me for this reason, and I often find that I am not particularly attracted to butch women, either, or effeminate men.

I think a lot of people become confused, as Squidsyd's response shows, between gender and sex, and that can make the topic of pansexuality seem all the more confusing.

Offline Star Safyre

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Re: Pansexual
« Reply #54 on: April 05, 2011, 05:11:57 PM »
That's an interesting description, Star. There are a lot of gender stereotypes that could stand to be broken, but essentially, there are certain traits (at least physically) that are considered quintessentially masculine or feminine. It's a weird angle to speak from, but as an artist, they are distinctions that are taught in figure drawing in order to portray someone as more masculine or feminine. More pronounced jawlines, broader foreheads, pronounced noses...these are things that are more masculine. This isn't to say that women can't have some of these features and it does not make them less of a woman because of it, but we do make associations based on an average.

I appreciate the compliment, Noelle.   :-)

And I don't think an artistic viewpoint is entirely strange.  When you're trying to draw a beautiful figure, you have to be very aware of how physical anatomy translates into emotion.  Combining traits most consider masculine and feminine can have a very different effect on the viewer than exaggerated feminine or masculine traits on their own.  Art is often an attempt to manifest beauty (or lack there of), and as sexual creatures, it's my own opinion that sexual response to gender-typed shapes can be very powerful tools for the artist.

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I recognize that there is a broad spectrum of gender identities, but I think you worded it exactly like I was trying to get at for myself -- I'm attracted to the masculine or the feminine; androgyny does not appeal to me for this reason, and I often find that I am not particularly attracted to butch women, either, or effeminate men.

As we're talking about a purely physical attraction, I'll be referencing bodies here.  Bodies which are considered androgynous by most do still appeal to me, however it is because I unconsciously tease out attractive feminine or masculine features.  I've not encountered a sexually attractive image or a person who rode the line between or was so outside male and female that I did not subconsciously classify hir as either being sexy in a beautiful feminine way or in a handsome masculine way.  I don't believe I am assigning a gender to any transperson I've found attractive, merely that I either find hir handsome or beautiful.

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I think a lot of people become confused, as Squidsyd's response shows, between gender and sex, and that can make the topic of pansexuality seem all the more confusing.

It honestly took me a long time to puzzle these things out myself.  It's a very sophisticated dialogue and easy to become overly tangled in semantics, prejudice, and highly sensitive and personal opinions and responses.  I think it takes a great amount of self-awareness to really understand one's sexual desires and identification fully and also to understand the desires of others.

Offline SpiralSpider

Re: Pansexual
« Reply #55 on: April 07, 2011, 02:57:19 PM »
Hello everyone.

I haven't read all the posts yet, just the first one I'm afraid.

I thought that, since I identify as Pansexual myself, I should perhaps put my own two cents in.

I just know that I could fall in love with someone regardless of their gender, age or pretty much any other physical trait. And for me, love is necessary for sexual attraction. I'm sure that it doesn't work the same way for everyone, but I think that the way that I'm wired (mentally) in other aspects lends itself to my sexuality.

For instance, I'm the kind of person that just.. isn't ... turned on by porn. I can't look at sexual images or video of random people and become sexually aroused by it. Actually, for a good portion of my life, I actually thought there was something "wrong" with me because of that.

* It's different, though, when I'm looking at the naked body of someone I've come to care for or naughty photos/video of myself with others.

Likewise, I've never been one to enjoy a one-night-stand or anything of the like. Though, I have tried them out before. I'm also very monogamous.

It might sound odd, but I'm not attracted to a lot of sexualized body parts. Whatever's between the legs, butts or breasts just don't do it for me on their own. There are body parts that I do find attractive, though. These are eyes and hair... I will go so far to admitting I have an actual hair fetish.  I like long hair and big, emotive eyes, regardless of gender. I also tend to like androgyny, particularly with men. A very macho man is a turn off for me, but personality could make him attractive.

Another thing that I've been told is strange is that I only have eyes for the person I'm with. I love my significant others with a singular devotion. I don't look at others in a sexual way when I'm in a relationship. It's as if my ability to find others as sexually attractive just turns off. When I'm single, that isn't the case though.

And, when I'm with someone, it's as if they become the most beautiful thing in the world to me. Suddenly their genitalia is something that turns me on, as well as the rest of them for that matter. I've even come to love the hairy belly of my husband, something I had never had any desire for in the past.

I don't think that the way I am is any better or worse than the norm. It takes all kinds to make the world run. However, it does make me sad when I'm with a very straight man and he says if he woke up one day and I suddenly had a penis, he wouldn't want to be with me any more. That makes me feel like the love he has for me might not be on the same level of what I have for him because I would still love him if he were suddenly female. But, I'll admit that it's hard to wrap my head around another person's sexuality some times.

I hope that I made enough sense for everyone to understand me, as different as we might be. ^.^'

Offline NoelleTopic starter

Re: Pansexual
« Reply #56 on: April 07, 2011, 05:00:38 PM »
Thanks for putting in your perspective, Chaznia...in the midst of speculation from everybody else, it's nice to have a first-hand account.

I just know that I could fall in love with someone regardless of their gender, age or pretty much any other physical trait. And for me, love is necessary for sexual attraction. I'm sure that it doesn't work the same way for everyone, but I think that the way that I'm wired (mentally) in other aspects lends itself to my sexuality.

Here's where I have to question your criteria. There are heterosexuals that can easily claim the same thing because age, hair color, shoe size, etc., all have little relevance when referencing the sex/gender you're sexually attracted to. I don't see how this lends itself to your sexuality any more than it would for anybody of any other sexuality just as I'm sure that there are pansexuals who may be indiscriminate in terms of gender, but do have preferences on age or hair or style of dress or what-have-you. The fact that you require a feeling of love before sexual attraction is also seemingly irrelevant; that's a trait you share with a pretty significant population, I'd say -- certainly the storybook idea of falling in love before you have sex with someone is one portrayed in just about every romantic movie out there.

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For instance, I'm the kind of person that just.. isn't ... turned on by porn. I can't look at sexual images or video of random people and become sexually aroused by it. Actually, for a good portion of my life, I actually thought there was something "wrong" with me because of that.

* It's different, though, when I'm looking at the naked body of someone I've come to care for or naughty photos/video of myself with others.

Likewise, I've never been one to enjoy a one-night-stand or anything of the like. Though, I have tried them out before. I'm also very monogamous.

Again, is any of this really unique to pansexuality or are they just aspects of personal taste within a broader realm of sexuality?

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Another thing that I've been told is strange is that I only have eyes for the person I'm with. I love my significant others with a singular devotion. I don't look at others in a sexual way when I'm in a relationship. It's as if my ability to find others as sexually attractive just turns off. When I'm single, that isn't the case though.

Hardly uncommon; this is the exact setup most typical partners want -- there's the prevalent stereotype that no woman ever wants her boyfriend/husband/etc looking at other women because of jealousy and it's also a trait common of other sexualities, as well.

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I don't think that the way I am is any better or worse than the norm. It takes all kinds to make the world run. However, it does make me sad when I'm with a very straight man and he says if he woke up one day and I suddenly had a penis, he wouldn't want to be with me any more. That makes me feel like the love he has for me might not be on the same level of what I have for him because I would still love him if he were suddenly female. But, I'll admit that it's hard to wrap my head around another person's sexuality some times.

Here's the thing, though. Your husband is (presumably, if he doesn't like the cock :P) heterosexual and by placing your love on a higher pedestal than his simply because you're indifferent towards genitalia in terms of sexual attraction, that is the kind of attitude I think many find baffling about pansexuality. I don't think he means he wouldn't love you as in he wouldn't love your personality and the person he's come to know, but it's a lie to say that physical and sexual attraction are insignificant to a lot of people. You can't fault people or suddenly consider their love for you inferior because they have a certain sexual preference just as you do. If you're not turned on by the thought of another penis, then is it really fair to hold that over them, if even silently? If you had been a man from the start, I'm sure you and your husband would have become great friends, but it never would have evolved into a marriage. It's not that he wouldn't love you, but he would love you a different way because sex is a part of your relationship and you being a man would be incompatible with that.

But to bring this back around, I do understand what you're saying when you describe your preferences and it seems pretty consistent with other accounts in this thread and it makes sense. I'm just not sure that the things you're attributing to contributing to your sexuality are really a legitimate means to separate pansexuality from any other orientation given it seems more like personal taste and nuance than it is any kind of inherent characteristic of that particular sexuality.

Offline SpiralSpider

Re: Pansexual
« Reply #57 on: April 08, 2011, 09:54:11 PM »
I don't think any one sexual "quirk"? that I have is restricted to any particular sexuality. Whether it's the "story book romance" as you put it or needing to care about someone before I find them attractive. I think that it's just the overall spread of people that I'm open toward possibly being with that puts the "pan" in my sexual. It's all of the things that come together.

I've been criticized for "only having eyes" for the person I'm with (and, more importantly, expecting them to do the same) on the grounds that it goes against human nature. That's the reason why I brought it up in this thread and also because I wanted to give an overall picture of the kind of person I am because everything is interconnected.

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Here's the thing, though. Your husband is (presumably, if he doesn't like the cock :P) heterosexual and by placing your love on a higher pedestal than his simply because you're indifferent towards genitalia in terms of sexual attraction, that is the kind of attitude I think many find baffling about pansexuality. I don't think he means he wouldn't love you as in he wouldn't love your personality and the person he's come to know, but it's a lie to say that physical and sexual attraction are insignificant to a lot of people. You can't fault people or suddenly consider their love for you inferior because they have a certain sexual preference just as you do. If you're not turned on by the thought of another penis, then is it really fair to hold that over them, if even silently? If you had been a man from the start, I'm sure you and your husband would have become great friends, but it never would have evolved into a marriage. It's not that he wouldn't love you, but he would love you a different way because sex is a part of your relationship and you being a man would be incompatible with that.

But to bring this back around, I do understand what you're saying when you describe your preferences and it seems pretty consistent with other accounts in this thread and it makes sense. I'm just not sure that the things you're attributing to contributing to your sexuality are really a legitimate means to separate pansexuality from any other orientation given it seems more like personal taste and nuance than it is any kind of inherent characteristic of that particular sexuality.

Like I said, I try not to hold stuff like that against my partners because it's really difficult to put myself in their shoes. I know that some of my ex's are very strict in only being attracted to traditionally feminine characteristics, but it's really hard for me to relate because I just don't think the same way. I try to be compromising, but when you have the idea that someone is your one true love always and forever, I expect that when they say it back that they mean it. I'd stay with someone through thick or thin if I loved them. Through loss of limb or ability. I'm sorry if that sounds haughty. I try to be understanding but sometimes the other's viewpoint is so tight that I wonder why or how that is so.

In the end, it's a rather small point. The fact of the matter is that I have a woman's body and I identify as female. I have no plans to change that so if they fell in love with me as I am then I am grateful for that. And I do agree that when someone signs up for a relationship, if something significantly changes they should have every right to dissolve the relationship if they're no longer fulfilled and no common ground can be reached. The issue I have is with trying to understand why physical sex is an issue in those cases. I'd have to accept it, but I'd be pretty heartbroken and feel all that love (as the sex is a part of the love, in my book) was a lie.

The situation I brought up was of some experiences I had in the past. My husband is actually a lot more open-minded about sexuality. He identifies as straight but said he would still stay with me if that sort of hypothetical situation ever happened.

If I ever came across a better term, I would adopt it. I don't use bisexual anymore - though I used to. I found the bi term to be kind of constricting and I also didn't like how people assumed that "If you like both boys and girls, why don't you date both at the same time? I thought that's what bisexual means!" Though I know that was their misconception and wasn't the term's fault. -.-' I don't like the binary system. Yes, the great majority of people in the world are either fully male or fully female, biologically. However.... beyond just "gender identity" there are the intersexed. I have a good friend who is an intersexed "true hermaphrodite" and is happy staying that way. I know that a lot of intersexed individuals identify as male or female, but Jil is living proof that not all do and I don't think that it's right to force them to fit into any mold out of convenience.

Offline Will

Re: Pansexual
« Reply #58 on: April 08, 2011, 10:48:36 PM »
For many people, physical sex is as much a priority in a relationship as... well, as anything.  It's understandable that it isn't for some people; it doesn't make those people any better or worse, or any more "true" in their love.  Connecting on a physical level doesn't have to be less important than a mental or emotional one.  Why?  I imagine because it's a hardwired instinctual desire.

Honestly, it does sound haughty.  We all have needs in a relationship.  Those needs change from person to person, and a person can and will change over the course of their lifetime.  Just because two people fulfill each other one day doesn't mean they will always.  Perhaps, then, it's a bit reckless to say "one true love forever," but just because a person stops fulfilling you doesn't mean you don't love them anymore.  It is possible to break up with someone and still love them, you know.  Again, people change.
« Last Edit: April 08, 2011, 10:51:03 PM by Will »