We’re giving this whole “allowing comments” thing a try for the first time ever! So, go nuts! We’ll see how it goes and try to answer back as much as we can!
I’m really glad you posted this, because when I first mentioned to my family (Who pride themselves in being open-minded and strongly support LGBT people) that I didn’t particularly feel female (my sex) OR male, they kind of rolled their eyes, and when I mentioned that I’m NOT attracted to females they flat out laughed at me.
They didn’t understand that gender identity and sexuality are different, and I think that they thought that I was just being rebellious, or trying to stand out.
When I found this comic, I was just so relieved because for a long time I thought I might just be crazy…
So, thank you.
I kind of feel the same way. While my mother and sister are far more accepting of LGBT matters than my father (who I consider a closeted homophobe), I still feel like they are trying to hide their snickers whenever I bring up my gender identity which I’m still in the process of figuring out.
you, your wife and cats are really awesome.
thats about all i have to say.
also i like batman.
Ok, this was really good to read, and its kinda freaking me out. So, Ive never felt tied to my sex, and though Ive wanted to be female Im not unhappy with my body, or the sex I have with it. So maybe im agendered, I cenrtainly want to be able to identify that way, but how do you rationalize that with my identity so far? How should I move forward when there’s no one I know who has experienced anything like this (as far as I know)? Im not even sure if this is something born out of the rejection of the male ideal, a mold I never even came close to fitting in to, or if I’m actually agendered. The ambiguous nature of this whole is kinda throwing me into a whole different kind of identity crisis… how did you deal with this?
Well, just found out about your site and have read everything up till now and enjoyed everything so far, so I came here to say that I appreciate your work ,and honestly Never once cared what gender were or how you identify yourself, you could identify as a cat/wookie hybrid as long as you are happy with it, all is good.
Hello. I also identify as agender/neutrois, and I’m glad you made this comic. I especially identify with the life timeline, as it’s pretty much exactly what I went through too. (Except substitute “batman” and “ghostbusters” with “dinosaurs” and “pokemon”)
I’m glad it resonated! And don’t worry, I don’t hold a grudge against Dinosaur/Pokemon traitors.
how exactly did you realize you were agender?
I’m on the fence of the whole thing, cause i just think of gender as a thing and never really fit either role? but i still know almost nothing on the subject. I think female cause my parts but Constantly flip flop on traditional gender rolls. I don’t know if this makes any sense. sorry! but I’m just kind of confused s’all.
the idea of gender roles are a sort of related (by persception and discussion) but different topic. they are solely based on your sex defining your personality which is false. you can break gender roles without being agender, but its cool if you still are.
“gender rolls”, nah, I’ll go for cinnamon rolls instead. (Yey for “allowing comments”, found your comics not long ago, and read them all in a few sittings).
Same here! I’m glad that someone with more of a readership than me was able to talk about this in a comics-oriented platform.
Your comics are lovely and so is your family yay for comments!
Just one quibble, and I’m sorry for nitpicking: http://grammarist.com/usage/one-in-the-same/
That triggered my “Wha?” response too. I assumed it was a typo, but I see from your link that it’s more widespread than that!
Fist of all this is now my most favorite comic on the site. And secondly I really do admire how open and expressive both you and your girlfriend are. I’ve been an open bisexual person for the past three years and if it wasn’t for this comic I would most likely still dislike myself. You’ve pointed out to me and many others just how important and non-important labeling people really is. I mainly say this because many people do ask me what do I consider myself and who do I consider myself to be with and to be honest, I don’t care who I’m with. Just as long as I and my partner are happy. Sorry for the super long comment
I’ve been reading the comic for quite a while and I find it funny, insightful, and enjoyable. It doesn’t matter what your gender(s) are so long as you’re happy with yourself.
Hopefully everyone will be respectful — to put down someone because of their gender (or lack thereof) is so ridiculous. I sincerely hope that humanity is moving past that, though I suspect we’re still at the “in progress” part of that…
From now on, I’m putting “an angry weasel” down as my gender on forms and such.
ALL MY YES. Seriously, now I don’t have to find the words to explain my agenderedness.
I know this will sound rude and disrespectful, but I do hope it’s not taken as such. I like your comics and would not want to offend.
But… I am somewhat confused as to how someone’s gender/sex/sexuality-identity is supposed to make a difference in how you interact with them? I’m talking with them, not their genitals. If I like someone, again, I like them not their genitals. Which I’m sure can be quite lovely, but I’m also sure they shouldn’t carry the whole package and it shouldn’t be expected of them. There’d be structural and maneuverability issues for starters.
I do realize it’s selfish of me not to care about what someone has in their (possibly proverbial) pants and what they think about that. I would try to change myself, but at the moment I’m struggling to understand why I should.
Also, I do realise this was probably made to answer any ambiguity issues that have risen among readership. And that I probably had some sort of point I was trying to make, but lost it during edits.
As mentioned in the comics, genitals ≠ gender, and I think you’ve confused the two. Your interactions with other people may not matter much to you, but if it’s a particularly important topic to the other person, they could be very hurt by having their identity brushed aside. No, you’re not speaking to or thinking of their genitals, but that’s not the point. You’re speaking to a person who identifies a certain way and wishes to be respected for it — no more than you willfully ignore their nationality, race, sexuality, or beliefs. For example, you wouldn’t keep calling someone who was Japanese “Chinese,” just because YOU didn’t personally understand the differences (not saying you don’t in that case, just as an example).
And this is what we meant in the last segment of the comic: one doesn’t need to UNDERSTAND something to RESPECT it. It’s just common courtesy to address someone as they request to be, especially if your only gripe with the distinction is that you don’t completely get it, not that it’s some real inconvenience.
But no, you didn’t offend me at all. I actually like to answer questions like this because a big part of advocacy is to talk to people on a more personal level, especially if we don’t see eye-to-eye. I’m glad that the whole genital-situation of a person isn’t vital to your liking them or not. In a sense, that’s part of the point: genitals don’t necessarily make a person, people are just people, with complex and unique identities that are comprised of a lot of psychological and physical factors. The least we can do is respect their choices, even those that have to do with their physical vs. non-physical beings. <3
As I said, I did have a point at one time; before I edited myself into a point where I probably confused even myself..
My reference to genitals was not meant as a reference to specific set of innies or outies. Just a generalisation or a simplification of the whole gender-rainbow of shades. If it came out as such, I apologise. I probably thought “I’m talking to you, not your gender-identity” sounded even sillier than what I ended up with. I see now I should not have referred to them at all.
Also, it’s not that I don’t understand why some people identify some way and others differently. My confusion is more about how it is any business of mine to such an extent that someone would need to defend their identity. Partly I suspect my failure stems from the fact that my native language does not have masculine or feminine pronouns. So to me the necessity of using a specific singular pronoun is slightly odd in itself.
What I’m really trying to direct my confusion at isn’t really you, or your identity. It’s more at the black speech-bubbles who’ve made enough of a fuss to elicit this comic. They’ve looked at something, wondered what it was, got a reply and then went “no, it can’t be C. It has to either A or B, or I can’t enjoy this piece of art any more.”.
To me it sounds like someone watching a horse-race (I do apologise comparing you to a horse, btw.), seen one horse win, then decided it doesn’t count because the horse doesn’t have a black or a white coat, but brown. And then go on demanding the horse be dyed one or the other. The colour of the horse is a part of the whole, but it isn’t what the horse *is*. It might have had an effect on why it won the race, Maybe someone liked it more because of it and therefore trained it better, but it isn’t the beginning and the end of it.
It’s just… I don’t see how one part of a whole makes any bigger difference than any other unless the topic is that part in particular. I would imagine how someone was raised, and their life-experiences in general would have just as much to do with who someone is.
On another topic; isn’t gender-identity more of a fact (the fact in question might fluctuate along a spectrum over time, but would remain *a* fact) than an opinion? Sounds silly to “respect” a rose because it has green leaves or red petals. I’d respect it for surviving in an environment where red-petals might attract undue attention, but then I’d respect the resilience, not the colour.
I might not understand why the petals are red, but I would accept the fact that they are red as given.
But then again, I am a tired old fool who never knows what he’s talking about.
I think that you understand this already. That’s why you are so confused. If your behavior is the way you described here, then you have nothing else to do. The idea was to teach other people to think like you do right now. Bye.-
I think what you’re referring to is the Aristotelian concept of “substance” versus “accident”.
Take a sheep, for example. If someone asked you to define a what a sheep is you might use words like fluffy, woolly, gambolly, etc. Yet a sheep is neither fluffy nor woolly after being sheared, so is it still a sheep? Undoubtedly. These traits are what Aristotle called “accidents”. A sheep’s innate sheepiness (what it *is*) is called its “substance”.
What you’ve hit on is at the core of human confusion regarding sex and gender. We are raised to think using gender terms and the gender binary, and that largely dominates how we relate to other people. Some cultures have a more enforced binary (like conjugating verbs, for example), so you are *required* to think in that binary in order to communicate effectively.
Anyway, I think you’re right (if I understand you correctly). Gender and sex are merely accidents; put another way, *you* are more than the sum total of your genitalia or gender identity/presentation. Your substance is the unique *you*. You want to address the substance in a society that only recognized accidents.
You just blew my mind up O.o We are talking major mushroom cloud here! ty!
I’m not sure I’d fit in completely as agendered (I haven’t quite landed on a term that I completely gel with yet), but this really struck home with me in a big way. Thank you for posting it. It was a day where it was needed.
Did you look into the terms genderqueer, genderfluid, and/or bigender? I’m sure there are other terms for people outside of the genderbinary, but these, along with agender, seem to be the most used and as far as I can tell, seem to cover most variations. (I’d say all, but I’m probably wrong about that.)
If I’m understanding correctly (which is a pretty big if) genderqueer just sorta rolls up everything that ain’t “male” or “female” and all the other genders are more focused versions of it.
Something I’ve come to learn (through a slightly different journey) is that names don’t always fit. Just work out who you are in as many words as it takes.
Beautifully done. Minor note – you probably mean synonyms where you say similes.
And your title is perfectly assonant – vowels all count the same for alliterative/assonant poetry, so you’re good there.
I don’t think everyone’s being ignorant by assuming you should identify with some group or other. Stereotypes, while sometimes offensive, can also be useful. By putting yourself in a category (or outside of a category), you provide a definition to the world about how you’d like to be seen.
A good example is sexuality – you can identify as any number of sexualities, from straight to gay, bisexual, pansexual, asexual, and so on (and each of those says something about you, because the way you identify and the way you present yourself matter to society)… but if you look at it another way, you can identify differently while retaining who you are. For instance, asexual really refers more to sex drive than preference – so even an asexual could be straight or gay; it just wouldn’t matter much to them. Pansexuals and some of the other sexualities out there are basing their sexual preferences on something other than sexual organs/gender/etc, but really it’s just a variation of bisexual. If you identify as pansexual, you’re making it clear that you don’t want to fit in the neat & tidy sexuality box… but the box is big, and there’s room for everyone It’s accurate to say someone likes both males and females, if it doesn’t matter to them whether someone is male or female.
That’s how I make my little world work, and I’m not hurting anyone by categorizing them. Those categories aren’t dictating how much I like them or how well I treat them; they just help me store information in my head so I can remember their interests, beliefs, and so on.
Anyway, I think everyone should identify however they like, and it’s definitely not okay to hate someone for making choices that don’t affect you. But, someone who’s just trying to categorize you isn’t necessarily being hateful or even ignorant. We all try and fit things and people into our world-views in some way or other. They might even be trying to figure out if you’re a potential love interest for them!
I don’t really agree with you about stereotypes at all — I think they’re all pretty harmful, even the positive ones. “Lesbians 101″ was pretty much our way of saying that stereotypes aren’t cool and shouldn’t be brought up as much as they are in society — because people are just people, and there’s enough variation to make even the smallest group a diverse and interesting one, free from the common tropes.
As for the rest of your reply, I sort of understand where you’re coming from and I agree you should treat people with respect no matter what. However, willfully ignoring their preferences in relation to gender and/or sexuality labels is pretty hurtful and substituting your own won’t go over well for anyone. For example, a close friend of mine is female, even though she was AMAB (which I even hesitate to mention, but for the purpose of this discussion, she’s given me permission to), and I would never dream of “categorizing” her as anything but a woman/female.
So, in that same vein, since I don’t label my sexuality, someone trying to categorize my sexuality as “lesbian” or “bi” or “pan” etc., would be equally hurtful, especially since I’m married, so my “potential mate status” as a monogamous person is nil. Equally, someone trying to categorize me as *just a woman* when I’m not is willfully not respecting me.
It all boils down to this: Don’t label other people. Label yourself (or don’t) all you want, and be sure to tell people your labels if they matter to you. Respect everyone’s labels, and if you refer to them as other than their specific labels or non-labels, then it isn’t respect.
Not everyone has to fit into a world view or be categorized — people are complicated, and it’s okay for them to have very complex selves.
(admin already replied and as this is about them, their word is final, but I’d just like to add my two cents).
I think, if categorizing people is important to you, you should allow for extra space in your mental categorizing room to fit as many boxes as needed in there. As you said (or as I understood), there’s nothing inherently wrong with trying to understand people by applying mental labels to them, but one should always use the labels they give for one to use.
I mean, you may need to fit people into your worldview and that’s fine, but they don’t need to fit in your worldview, only in theirs. And if you refuse to identify them by the labels they want you to use, I don’t think they’ll want to be part of your worldview very much. So try to know the people you meet before you fit them into a box that may not be in agreement with their wishes, and if it’s needed, make a new box
I would just like to point out a minor correction in your description of asexuality. As an ace myself, I am neither straight nor gay, I am simply not attracted to people, yet I do have a sex drive. Asexuality is simply a lack of sexual attraction to people, it does not have to do with sex drive or libido in any way. There are actually a large number of asexuals who masturbate or have sex but are still asexual because they are not sexually attracted to any gender. I hope that helped clear something up, because I prefer for my orientation to be accurately represented. I do appreciate the fact that you are aware of it and tried to include it however, I hope you realize I was not trying to be rude in any way.
Gender: who da hell cares? Doesn’t matter, you and your wife are adorbs!
I’m not sure I’ve ever cracked up so hard as when I read the whole thing over using “an angry weasel.” That is actually brilliant.
Definitely. My favourite part was “What do you mean you “Lack an angry weasel”? You’ve got something down there!
“Present: accepted that neither angry weasel fit me”
Just found these comics today and read through all of them. (Thanks Imgur!)
I am glad the comments are open so I can tell you how awesome I think you are, and how much I enjoy your comics. And now I have done that. And now I am done.
Why, thank you! I’m glad you got here safely!
I love your comic, so I am glad that you have the comments open so I can let you know how cool it is.
Plus your family was too cute.
Keep up the great work
So much respect for you as always, Stiffler. I wish more people used this train of thought when dealing with people in general. But especially as a transguy, myself, to quote Rodney Dangerfield, “I don’t get no respect!” Granted it’s all good with most friends and loved ones, but the general public has no qualms when it comes to getting in your face and telling you what’s on their minds as to how to live your life. I’m sure you know this all too well.
Thank you! And I apologize for the general public — it can be brutal out there. I hope that one day you get all of the respect you so rightly deserve, my good man!
I’m a dude. I have dude parts. I like other dude’s dude parts. *Shrug* I’m lucky in that I never really had to deal with more than being gay, I guess. I’ve never understood the gender/sex thing too well because I’m of the opinion that… another person’s sex/gender/whatever isn’t any of my business unless it’s someone I know personally. The fact people get so worked up over it, that others feel it needs to be a thing annoys the hell outta me. Like… ugh. I just. UGH. Why can’t people just shut up for ten minutes and let others be happy?
My girlfriend just linked me to this comic, and has basically spent the last hour informing me that you are me, and she is your wife. It’s pretty fucking accurate.
I had a similar experience while reading all of the comics, except I was telling my girlfriend that I am A and she is K.
I even look like A (especially her comic self) it’s weird haha!
This place is amazing!
I just wanted to say I looove your comics! I’m a straightish female tom-boy thing my self, but your comics are pretty much universal! To me, gender is, like sexuality, on a sliding scale. You can be at one end or the other, smack in the middle, or not on it at all!
On a totally different note, I loooove your cats. I myself have two cats, a girl and a boy who are both old and going slightly senile in some ways, especially my girl. My kitty Fai, who I had to put down two weeks ago, was a very weird cat who thought he was a dog. He used to play fetch when he was a young cat. I don’t know why I’m telling you about my cats, I think it’s because I’ve been reading your comics for a long time, and you and your wife seem rather like some of my friends. Anywho, thank you for being you, and keep up the amazing work as long as you love it! <3 <3 <3
My condolences for Fai.
Something unrelated: Peter looks/sounds adorable
So I have a question I’d like to know: what’s the difference, if any, between agendered and androgynous? I probably could find the info myself somewhere online, but i’d like to hear your take on it.
In very simplistic terms: A male or a female (or even intersex people, who fucking rock) can be androgynous but not be agendered — i.e., they have a specific gender identity that is man or woman. Likewise, an agendered person doesn’t necessarily have to be completely androgynous — i.e., I present as more “masculine” of the center than I do feminine, but I lack a gender identity.
In essence, “androgynous” refers to a genderless appearance, whereas “agendered” refers to an internal orientation on (or off, to be more specific) the gender spectrum.
Ghostbusters is more important than gender at most points in anyone’s life.
Thank you for this!
Your comics and their content often help me put into perspective what I have been struggling to define for years [mostly for others who are stuck in the male-female state of mind].
Like you, I also ventured into the world of the interbutts back in the 90′s, though I ventured forth as a female rather than a male. Not so much to be the typical online creeper, but more because that’s what I am more comfortable portraying myself as :]
Anyway, thank you both! <3
I’ll start by saying I’m sorry if I offend you, I’m honestly just curious. Doesn’t it get confusing to say that you don’t identify as anything? I mean couldn’t you still say you’re a woman who doesn’t like to be defined by gender stereotypes? I just find the whole “pronouns” thing confusing in this situation I guess. More than anything I would just want to know what I should use for proper grammar.
However, good for you for not feeling that you need to stay in the drawer society wants to put you in. As a woman with what many would consider to be “un-womanly” traits, I can see how it would be nice to step back from the stereotype.
S/he is NOT a women who doesn’t conform to gender stereotypes. I am. I act in a socially defined male manner about 50% of the time. I am also firmly a woman and those are the correct pronouns to use with me. S/he is agendered. S/he is not just a women and pigeonholing him/her/etc because it’s convenient for you is not accurate.
The purpose of correct grammar is clarity, and the clarity in this case is respecting the message. Saying “they” may not be grammatically correct for the individual, but in the vernacular, it’s the surest way to avoid offense.
Hope you don’t mind me chiming in admin, I don’t know how you’d respond, this is just how I feel on the matter.
I found this very informative and interesting. I always find this comic to be funny, but often you end up teaching me something as well and I greatly appreciate it. Thank you!
Wall of text so discouraging so I only skimmed it :[ Its cool that you explained it for people who care. I still don’t get why its so hard to just accept people for being a person but some people prefer to live under a rock and that’s cool for them lol
I’m so glad you decided to enable comments now, of all times. This is the first update I’ve been here for, and I am so glad I get to tell you how much I loved reading both of your comics over the last week. You have an amazing way of making me feel like the little weird things I do aren’t so weird after all, like feeling fucking epic while walking with my headphones in. I also very much appreciate the way you are so casual with your wife’s condition. My mother is schizophrenic, and to see you so easily deal with something that I have such a hard time with really gives me hope that it won’t always be so hard, that things can be normal, even if it’s not a “normal” kind of normal. I suppose what I’m trying to say is that you seem like a really awesome person, and I’m glad you’ve decided to share that with all of us.
I identify my gender as female and my sexuality as pan-sexual. Man, woman, agendered, doesn’t matter to me. I fall in love with the person and generally don’t care about the rest. It took me years to be comfortable with myself, and still have a hard time explaining it to people. I admire what you’ve done here with this comic and am pleased you decided to allow comments! I look forward to your comics every week!Keep doing what you’re doing it’s awesome.
Why make such a big deal about gender or lack there of? It sounds more like you just don’t follow “traditional” gender roles. You are still female. Why not be proud of it, instead of trying to hide or deny it?
Because physical sex =/= gender (or lack thereof)? Also, dismissing someone’s gender identity is extremely cissexist. For many people (not necessarily Stiffler), they are not comfortable with their physical sex or gender they were assigned at birth because it does not reflect their actual identity. My body is female, I won’t deny that. My gender is NOT woman, though, and that is what matters: unless someone is trying to get into them or I am at a doctor for a sex-related thing, what is in my pants should be completely irrelevant to any conversation and interaction.
Hell, I could walk around nude and my gender still isn’t woman.
Too much Tumblr for you.
Noooo…. Y’see, being genderqueer and knowing terms like “cissexist” isn’t a phenomena that exists only on a social networking site. While I’m not even the most PC person from day-to-day, I’m happy to accept new concepts and not fault people for having ideas that conflict with my own.
I find cissexist to be made up, and hateful personally. Im a person.
“Cissexist” only means when someone is touting views that only acknowledge or respect people that identify within a binary system. That’s not to say the word never gets misused or thrown around hatefully. In fact, my wife has gotten her share of flak within the genderqueer community just because she does fit the “cis” label. Being “cis” doesn’t make anyone a bad person no more than being anywhere else on the gender spectrum does.
I think it’s just the emotional nature of the topic and some very visceral first-hand experiences because of it that causes discussions to instantly fall into offensive-defensive roles. The more people try to just TALK about it rather than drawing lines between “Us” and “Them,” the better off we’ll all be.
“Cissexist” is no more hateful than being called “sexist,” “homophobic,” etc. if you are actually being so. Implying that someone should just embrace their gender as a woman because they are female is cissexist: it is a cisgender binary oppressing a gender-variant person. Instead of getting offended when called out on being oppressive, why not learn to not be so?
Your original reply implied that a person should just be proud of their biological/assigned sex than to come up with or align themselves with other terms that better define them. It implied that agender, genderqueer, trans* people should just be proud of their sex and accept their sex even if their sex does not align with their gender identity. Comments like that hurt trans* and gender variant people and have been used to silence us. It enforces a cisgender binary on us, and has nothing to do with Tumblr (fact: I knew of cissexism well before I knew Tumblr existed).
Which “female”? The state of her genitals? Behaviour? Genetics? Personal identity? You’re oversimplifying it. She admits she has a uterus, but since no one’s ever going to see it, who cares? She identifies as agendered. She’s not hiding her female-ness or in denial about it. It’s insulting to suggest you know her better than she does.
Let me put it to you this way: what makes you so content to label yourself a man/woman? Would you be just as happy to have someone come along and insist you should be called the opposite, no qualms about their intent, no feelings of disconnection from your personal reality? As mentioned in the comic, scientists and psychologists alike can’t definitively say WHAT defines gender, even though it’s clearly there, and that’s to say nothing of philosophers, sociologists, and anthropologists taking a swing at the subject. There’s no shame in not understanding it, but there is shame in denying people simple, effortless respect.
Feeling agendered doesn’t mean I don’t acknowledge my biology or have some sort of dim view of either gender. It’s not a state of denial, it’s an acceptance of the fact that humans are complex and their intricacies are beautiful on every end of the spectrum, even if one doesn’t feel they belong on that spectrum at all. To explain what it is to lack a gender in exact terms is to understand the entire breadth of what gender is in the first place, which is a little like trying to explain what the human essence is — it may not be charted out, but you can feel it and know it’s something.
Since I’m not the only person to feel agendered or to have related to the comic above in some way, I have to think there’s something to the gender conundrum beyond simple shame or denial of stereotypes.
I don’t have a gender either. I’m not a gender, or any of the other buzzwords or jargon being made up these days. I feel it is more about you wanting to have place but still be your own special snowflake. People are making up new pronouns every week it seems.
Why am I content with being male/female? Cause I like myself how I am.
If someone insisted I was the opposite? I’d point to my organs and say “science proves you wrong.”
Disconnection from my personal reality? I don’t understand.
Sorry if I came off rude. I’m sure the Tumblr brigade will get my.
Actually, I hoped that the point made in the comic is that I DON’T care about what others think, and therefore don’t need to be qualified as normal, special, or anything else in other people’s minds. I am my own identity, regardless of anyone’s beliefs. The only reason we felt the need to create this comic in the first place was because 1. we had to spend too much time clarifying the same points over and over, and 2. there just isn’t much literature out there on being agendered and we wanted to add a contribution. A narcissistic bid for Most Special Person of the Year, it is not.
Again, I think a big part of our butting heads is the fact that gender and sex are being used to signify different concepts. From reading your comments, you seem to think of them as the same thing. And you know what? If that’s your understanding of the idea, that’s fine, it’s yours. I’m just saying that a lot of people, myself included, see them as two separate parts of what define a person, and they should be allowed to acknowledge that without being blamed of attention-getting or some other shallow motive.
Rude might not be the word for how you come off in these comments, “contentious” seems more accurate. It’s one thing to not “get” a subject and ask questions while bringing up your own views, it’s another to accuse someone of less-than-admirable motives for their life choices. I love to discuss opposing viewpoints, but please try to keep the tone less harsh.
I need a “like button” or rather an *insert standing ovation here* feature.
If you say so. I still find refering to a female (and your own wife) as ‘he’ to be rather…odd. You are female, so why not use female pronouns?
Also, no, I do not think Gender and Sex are the same thing. I don’t really believe in Gender at all. These days it is very much the “in” thing around the internet and the tumblrs to be “different”. This is why there are new words every few months to describe themselves. People making up new pronouns for themselves, or describing themselves in some kind of unique way.
It seems to be all about wanting to stand out from the crowd. Saying “See, im a little different than the others.” even though they dont make a big deal about it.
And I was right, the tumblr brigade did show up. Bet I got put on Shitredditsays too.
Saying you don’t believe in gender and pushing him to identify herself are two different things. You say science proves you wrong with genitals, but bodies don’t always match up with who we are and that is a fact. By you don’t believe in gender, you seem to be saying we should all settle for the hand we were dealt biologically. Why not err on the side of respecting others?
I’m a queer cisfemale in a monogamous relationship with a straight cismale.
You say people don’t make a big deal out of it. But…you yourself /are/ making a big deal out of it. It bothers you that people won’t just identify with their genitals, and so you’re arguing that it’s wrong for them to do so.
If it really wasn’t a big deal, and if it really didn’t matter, then you wouldn’t care.
By the way, the distinction between sex and gender wasn’t made up by people on Tumblr. It originally appeared in anthropological and sociological circles. Once you study enough of humanity, you start to realize that the binary doesn’t fit. Did you know that there are cultures that have recognized the existence of more than two genders for centuries, even millenia (e.g. India)?
I struggle with whether I perceive myself as agender or genderqueer… honestly, I hate gender roles and the construct of gender and its affects on society. That said, I fully support those who feel comfortable with having a gender and whose gender is important and intricate to their identity. I rather my gender and sex be irrelevant.
i’ve been a fan for a long time. i was the girl who messaged k a log time ago about my agendered partner and transitioning pronouns. (they are also a fan. ) i just wanted to say that i love your work and that you are beautiful and wonderful people. your work always speaks to me. you two give me the most support whenever i have trouble with my partner’s transition. i can now say that they have three of their own bras and have bought their first dress due to my support and assistance. this in addition to learning to adjust to new body changes. just…thank you both so much. so very, very, very much. you inspire me and give me strength the way few things can nowadays.
“Go back and replace every gender term with ‘an angry weasel’.”
Well that made for a thoroughly entertaining second read-through. Love your comics!
I’d just like to say, even though the comments on this particular comment are generally supportive (and you seem like the kind of person that wouldn’t be easily offened by fucknuts on the internet) those idiotic comments you quoted are laughably ignorant. To say your comics stopped being funny or they weren’t able to relate to you any more when they discovered your gender reveals so much more about those individuals’ insecurities than more generic prejudice.
I really like the way you lay out your feelings on this issue. I think you’ll agree that the concept of gender and sex is certainly much too complicated for a (relatively) short comic to fully explore but I think you did an excellent job of summarizing the concepts and very clearly expressing your personal views.
I have to say, on a personal note, it’s refreshing to see someone who doesn’t get quite so hung up on pronouns. I totally respect anybody for whom that’s an important aspect of their life but it always seemed frustratingly insignificant to me to attach such importance to grammar that was created before there was any concept of the issues people are trying to convey. I realize that it being unimportant to me doesn’t mean it has to be to everybody else but it feels to me like if somebody decided what flavor ice cream they like was a very important part of their identity and they wanted to be referred to as a rocky-road-er.
i soo feel the same way about pronouns. Being a spanish speaker, where there is no gender-neutral pronouns, it feels like they are gonna be wrong everytime you use it, and most people give soo much importance too them that its very exhausting. Even more in a multi gender and sexual society.
Thank you <3 Hopefully this will help understanding.
I like dressing cute but I don’t identify with my sex at all but haven’t really thought about it yet. I get easily irritated when people draw assumptions about who I am by the feminine/masculine things I wear, I don’t really feel like gender has anything to do with who I am. I’ve been kind of stuck in stereotypes and social paradigms, thanks for sharing.
Man, being agendered sounds nice and simple. I identify as a woman, and boy, there’s a bunch of crap that comes with that identity. But, it’s who I am. Can’t claim to be another gender and be comfortable in my own skin.
Anyway, this comic was fun and informative, but I’m looking forward to you guys bringing the funny again in your next update
You are awesome!!!!!!
Thanks for the teaching.
I really like your “informative” comics and I’m looking forward the completion of the Lesbians 101.
P.S.: don’t stop making the silly comics too, ’cause they’re also great.
I spent like half an hour explaining your comic to a friend who asked something along the lines of “Wait isn’t zer girlfriend a lesbian? Don’t agenders only get lovin’ from pansexuals like me?”
I had to spend quite awhile explaining how fluid sexuality, love, and attraction are, while also explaining how there is no set way to do anything. Also how it is completely you guys business.
I love both of your comics! Thank you for this lovely one explaining agender, I am finding it very helpful and Im sure some of my friends will too.
I have to admit, I’ve been anxiously awaiting this comic. I’ve been a big fan since the start, and as someone who has struggled with their gender/sexual identity, I really relate to this.
Thank you for sharing and creating more awareness of these issues.
You guys are totally awesome and I absolutely love this comic! You guys actually made my boyfriend and I our 1st year anniversary gift (the one with the 2 goats), I cried like a baby when I got it (I be the girlfriend lol). You guys are awesome!
Hi! I love your comic, and I am soo happy that I found it! I love the dialogue, the artwork, and I am so pleased to see you clarify sex, gender, and being agendered! Generally, I do my best to explain this stuff to my friends when it comes up to conversation, but you explained it so well, I shared it on my facebook! (Which is super exciting because for the friends it has never come up in conversation with, if they look on my wall, they can get info on it now! :D).
Thank you, you two, for being awesome!
I think you just became my personal hero. Or at least you WOULD have, if you weren’t already! Chaos Life is like you: composed of pure awesome. Your spouse is one lucky lady. (^_^)
I haven’t read all of the other comments so far because there are a lot. But now I am seriously reconsidering my whole fucking life. I’m technically a woman, married to an amazing husband. I don’t feel like a girl though. I never have. You’ve seriously fucking blown my mind here. Now I have to read about stuff online and talk to my husband. This has been a crazy revelation. THANK YOU.
Happily sent your Feminine Wiles comic to my big sister! c:
She’s always told me to be whatever makes me most comfortable. I’m androgynous leaning in one direction while my gender identity leans the other way.
Thank you for posting this. I often forget how most people view us. Sometimes we politely need to pop up and say that we are around. ^-^
I love you guys’ webcomic I have been reading it for a while and love every page! Although this page for some reason isn’t showing up ):
What pronoun does your wife use when you come up in conversation or she’s telling a story about you? Despite your assurances that either is fine, if I were to meet you in person, I would take cues from those closest to you. In a sense, whatever your wife says, goes.
(K here) I feel powerful being the boss of my spouse. To answer your question: I write more than I talk, and then I tend to use s/he, they, Stiffler, A., etc. Likewise in casual conversation, I refer to Stiffler as my spouse and I switch between he and she. If we’re among friends, I prefer to use “he” “Stiffler” or “they”. If we’re among family, I use “she” “Annie” and “they” because that’s what the family members are accustomed to hearing and since my spouse doesn’t give a shit, I’d rather make both parties comfortable. I don’t use “ze” “zey” “zhir”, etc. because A. doesn’t like them, but if they were what anyone else preferred, I’d definitely make an effort to use what pronouns they felt comfortable with. It’s actually pretty easy to switch up pronouns once you get used to it — just in the same way I’ve always said “You’re so handsome” or “You’re so beautiful” — arguably usually used for one or the other gender, but it’s becoming more commonplace to refer to women as handsome and men as beautiful as it is, so gender really doesn’t even factor into it that way. In the same way, I’ve just become accustomed to recently switching up between she/he because I don’t think of them as either gender any more when in reference to my spouse, but more of a conversation indicator that I’m talking about him. I’ve rambled. Anyway. It doesn’t matter one bit to Stiffler, s/he’s an asshole that just likes to be brought up in conversation, whatever pronouns you use or don’t use.
I am so glad I watch this comic, I recently, (like honestly 5 days before you posted this), came to the conclusion that neither gender fit me. I did not know how to describe it in any way that made people understand and lots of people couldn’t get it from the way I tried to tell them.
Your comic was a real eye opener for me on how to describe it, and well I’d like to thank you. Thank you for making this wonderful description and helping me explain to not only my friends, but myself as well. You gave me a proper description to go on instead of just a feeling.
OK, as a preface, I personally wonder if the comments area was created JUST for this comic. It seems appropriate…but then again, I suppose it might just be so you don’t have to get so many Emails from us.
Personally, I don’t see what all the commotion is about. Gender might be an important personal understanding, but MY gender should never need to relate to YOU or vice versa unless we were very personally involved. Otherwise…well, whose business is it? I don’t care about someone’s sexuality or gender. It has nothing to do with how you should treat that person. Their sex isn’t important either. It all comes down to Being A Good Person To Other People.
And why not, let’s take it further! Ever watch Star Trek? Other species might not have sexes or what we call genders, but would it matter? It sounds a little ridiculous to SAY, but I’d have to say that I’m a sentient-ist. If you have intellect (and prove it), I will try to respect you. Doesn’t that make more sense than someone’s sex or gender or race or even species?
…speaking of, since it involves a demonstration of Intellect, that means I can still hate the Tea Party.
1. That time Riker fell in love with a member of the third gender from a trinary system
2. Dwarves in Terry Pratchett are all referred to as “he” and dwarf courtship is largely trying to discretely ascertain what giblet they’re packing.
I love reading your comics! They helps me personally understand my little sister better to have it explained this way, and it gives me a little more of an idea where she’s coming from (but as you’ve said everyone is different so I’m still a little in the dark). I hope that as she grows up and matures that she is as confident about herself as you seem to be.
I just wanted to say… nice comics.
Also, I don’t give a fuck about your sexuality/gender/sex/blah-de-fucking-blah.
What’s with all these people busy being “I’m X and you’re Y therefore AIHDFKFHUJDHFSFJADFAJSDKFJASDFKJASDJFHASDFHKASDFJASDFHDFHASDGBFAJSDHASDJFHASDFASDKFAJSDUHFAHSKEJFASJU”?
Hi. I’m Serj. I like alcohol, boobies, Big Gay Dan’l, and making random shit. I don’t care.
I really enjoy your comics and they are very funny (and when they aren’t they are nice and insightful). Honestly I didn’t really know what the term agender meant, I assumed it was the same as being androgynous (in appearance), so this was very enlightening. Props for being so relaxed about all of the flack you get for not identifying with a specific gender.
Hey! Great to see you guys are allowing comments, I love this comic but I resent your implication that Ghostbusters are not still the most important. Also, what version of batman do you like best? My favorite will always be the one from the 1990′s animated series.
This is really interesting and hits closer to home with me in a few parts than i would have thought. The biggest one being online avatars. Though I am male and straight I tend to use female avatars.
Pretty much the exact think you described with coming one with your gender happened to me in second live. Coming out with it, loosing most of my friends, and then living with it out. I have been under a female avatar there for years and it has little to do with my sexuality or physical sex, but more that I just feel more comfortable with the female AV. I have tried male avatars there and they never really felt like me.
So you gave me something to think about, though my sex and sexuality is of a man my gender may be more nebulous.
This comic was fantastic. I honestly thought you were male. Regardless, it doesn’t matter to me. I enjoy your content. I enjoy how you write about your cats and your relationship with your wife.
It’s the relationship that I can relate to. It doesn’t matter whatever you are.
Keep up with your comics. I always enjoy seeing an update on my reader feed of your comics.
I love you and your wife and both comics and this strip in particular /so much/. I mentioned in a reply to someone else, but you and K have a LOT in common with my girlfriend and I, haha! I’m convinced that you two are slightly older versions of us.
Keep up the brilliant work.
This might be a useless info, but here in Finland we have the pronoun “hän” for “he” and “she” so it’s gender neutral. I’ve always liked that and it was a shock to me to learn that the gender must be emphasized in English language. Feel free to use the pronoun “hän” of yourself, it’s both gender neutral and super hipster in USA
You are great
I’m a fan of your comics and the message you send.
I for myself am a pansexuel (biological) guy, who prefers woman because of their character. And I identify myself as agendered, but my apperance is labeld as straight male. So mostly I don’t get offended, but still feel kinda missunderstood. And I start to question myself, if after all I am a straight male (in terms of sex and gender).
I know, it’s somehow the reverse of the typical questioning of sexuality/gender, but I still hope to be taken seriously and that you (or somebody else) may even give me advice.
Sorry for my bad english, I’m german/polish
And once again: You are great!
I’ve always wondered why we bother with these sorts of discussions in the first place?… A&K, I am REALLY sorry this turned out to be so long but I am not known for my brevity. Thank you for the comics. I love them – all of them. (TL;DR at bottom)
Some good points were brought up earlier about how we place people into stereotypical categories because it allows us to better process their motives, reasoning, future actions, and makes them safe/predictable/understandable to us. Everyone demonizes this sort of categorical structuring we do on a daily basis because it “oversimplifies people”, but I believe it is that we are woefully ill-equipped to understand every individual we meet on a case-by-case basis… and that this sort of evaluative tool is a social necessity.
Think of it like this: The categorical structuring we perform is normally quite effective at allowing us to “sum up” a person; people who fall significantly enough outside of these boxes are less the norm and more the exception. It would make sense that social evolution would progress more towards those functions that allow us to evaluate MOST others at the expense of a few remaining outside of our typical evaluations.
And to be completely fair, our categorization is limited to both language, and our abilities to distinguish and track exceptional traits within the categories. You can label every goldfish as a goldfish even if one of them has black scales simply because it is not hard to mark/remember a single, overt difference. Keeping track of MANY exemptions (like trying to keep track of a broad spectrum of fin size, speed, dorsal to fin ratio, etc.) is extremely difficult. We are only barely capable of these things.
It would seem then that to do away with these structures entirely would perhaps give those capable of it, the ability to recognize the motives of ALL others rather than most. This is obviously desirable, but here is the catch: Do you really believe that critical evaluation (at least facially so) of every person you ever meet is a truly realistic expectation to hold for the majority of the human population? Frankly, I have little to no confidence that the majority of people are capable of such a feat, and claim that those who do believe so are disillusioned as to the mental capacity of your average human being.
Is the system we have perfect? Obviously not. I don’t dispute that the normative: “We should do it this way if we want to include ALL people” is the correct moral assessment to make – and yet I see it as extremely useful and more practical than these forced-inclusion spectra (or even forced-exclusion/label-resistant types) that prevent categorization. Furthermore I would posit that actions to dissolve this process are unwise and detrimental to our ability to socially interact on large scales.
TL;DR … Basically I agree that the breadth of human individuality is varied on an astronomical scale and that proper evaluation of people is absolutely desirable, however I feel that it is an unrealistic expectation to ever “do away with” the categorizing and initial-stereotyping of people. It doesn’t make me respect people any less for wanting to differentiate themselves… in the end all I really mean to say is “You’re dreaming if you think most people will be willing or capable of understanding and accepting your terms. In a perfect world it would be nice… if only”.
I appreciate the well-thought out response.
I never said we should do away with categories or how we choose to remember folks, just that if someone says “This is my identity” the nice thing to do is to just say “Cool, man.” Treating someone with respect doesn’t require your understanding or your acceptance, it just requires a basic mental facility of remembering a simple thing like a name, nationality, sexual orientation or gender. That isn’t too difficult for most people I’ve come across — in fact, they seem to remember all of those things perfectly well and then some. If they’re categorizing me in their heads as “such-and-such” and they make no mention of it, I don’t really care — it’s in their heads, and they probably don’t know I refer to them as “That person with the weird nose thing” in my mental recesses when I try to remember how to draw their face.
There seems to be an interesting thing happening where people read my comic dialogue as being exclusionary in some way, either by wanting to do away with a system (like gender) or claiming to be the only voice on the subject. In reality, neither of those things happened and I don’t claim or want either of them (my wife loves her gender, as do many of my friends, and I wouldn’t tell them to do otherwise). But it’s still my comic — about me — and is not meant to be a commentary on how the world works, only that everyone deserves the same level of respect as everyone else — and that includes respecting their identities, regardless of whether you or anyone else believes they have any basis in social norms. Social norms are pretty outdated and have a way of changing as it is: i.e., same-sex marriage is more widely accepted now than it was 50 years ago, transgenders are no longer classified as mentally ill and the mentally ill aren’t poked with sticks by ladies and gents of leisure. Of course the human race will always have the ingrained instinct to make snap judgements and generalize, but that doesn’t mean we aren’t clever enough to self-correct and accept that there can be more than two ice cream flavors.
You’re right, you didn’t say we should. My apologies, I just got so caught up in the comments that I started responding to those instead of directly your your viewpoint. I completely agree that people should learn to accept identity unconditionally I suppose I was merely reflecting that instituting identity-spectra as a societal norm would require a HUGE change in language and psychological/scientific definitions of things – so huge a change that I fear we aren’t capable of it. Obviously I wish it were the case that we could identify people individually in an outward manner, but I agree wholeheartedly with your viewpoint: It is better that we accept others’ identity AND the following confusion (by not being able to fully label them) rather than reject it for the sake of our own comfort.
In short, I truly believe that “a little bit of mental confusion is a small price to pay for the comfort of others in their own skin”
If I missed your point again I’m truly sorry. I have this problem with reading comprehension…
Sorry I couldn’t find an EDIT button so I’ll just tack this on really quick: I want to amend one statement: I do believe we should be able to accept people for who they are, BUT people should also not get offended by those who “jump to conclusions” and need to understand that it is merely their coping mechanism, and that it may be unreasonable to ask any more of them otherwise. In other words:
“Judge not, lest ye be judged – BOTH of you tards!” ~ Sun Tzu (or was it Abraham Lincoln? Bah!)
The correct term is Understanding People Well-ology. Just thought I’d mention that.
Thanks for the free and awesome comics!
My “boyfriend” (male) identifies as a woman and I (female) am agendered. A lot of people think of us as a normal heterosexual couple, which is kind of silly to those who know us more closely. I think a lot of people don’t want to worry about gender because they don’t want to deal with another layer of political correctness, which is absolutely ridiculous in my opinion. If you’re going to get to know someone, shouldn’t you learn all of them?
Anyway, awesome comic. I loved the angry weasels.
When I first started reading, I thought you were male, based on how you were represented. I only figured it out when I got to one where you did a childhood flashback-type deal, and you were a little girl. My only reaction at that point was initial confusion, and eventual, “Ah, okay.” Your shit’s still hilarious and I love you either way. Sexuality and gender mean very little to me, actually.
Keep up the good work, much love.
That’s kind of how I feel most of the time. I’m just glad I figured it out before the “trying to be more girly” bit
Sorry but I don’t understand your position at all. I think you are confusing the concepts of “male and “female” with their idea in your society. The “gender” thing is absurd, at least how it’s presented here. Maybe it’s just the meaning that it has in the english language, but it doesn’t makes any sense. After you said: ” I don’t view myself either a man or a woman”, for example, you have drawn in the “different ages” portraits of yourself the fact that when you were 20 you tried to be more “girly”, but that is not a “woman” (or a “female human”, if you prefer) prerogative (using “feminine dresses” or makeup or things like that) it’s just what people (in our societies, and not everyone) thinks women have do to.
Just to make an example, 100 years ago people thought women had to wear only skirts, but now they use jeans, and nobody has a problem with that. That means they identifies themselves as men, or that they can not be considered women anymore? No, they just don’t think that “being a woman” it’s equal to “wearing a skirt”. The opposite example can be made with men and kilts. The fact that in Scotland men wore kilts (that are,after all, skirts) made them “not men”? No, even if for some cultures men had to wear just trousers.
(by the way, funny thing: the celtic and in general nordic peoples were the ones to wear trousers to adapt to the cold climate in opposition with romans and such, and now their descendants wear kilts)
If some idiot writes “draw yourself more “girly”. Some boobs or eylashes, at least!” it’s not because he wants for you to resemble a woman, what he wants it’s for you to resemble his image of a woman, how he think a woman must be or behave. I just find absurd that from saying “I am not how you want me to be just because I am a woman” people arrived to say “I’m not a woman” and started to make confusion with things like pronouns (that were and are used referring to what you call “sex”). Just, why?
Btw, sorry for my english.
It’s odd to me that you’ve chosen to not pay attention to what I did write, but instead project your own views on one simple drawing, with a rather concise description and no elaboration from myself at all.
I’m aware that not all societies think like American societies. I’m also aware of societies where the women’s roles are primarily reversed with men, and their rights, freedoms and lineages are more important than men’s. I am not confusing “western gender roles” with gender. Indeed, Lesson 2 of our comic Lesbians 101, we address how gender roles have very little to do with actual gender these days.
If you were to pay attention to what I actually wrote rather than what I did not, you would see that I said:
- Gender is something ingrained in your personal identity. It’s how you see yourself.
- Psychologists and Scientistss have conflicting theories on what defines gender to this day.
- The concept of gender is a lot more personal than biological sex.
And to be fair to the drawing, it was the only one where I was wearing a dress — but that was more of a stylistic choice to simplify the perceived switch than a commentary on gender roles. Indeed, I’ve always worn dresses and skirts — and I continue to do so. They’re pretty goddamn comfortable, especially in the summer.
I assure you, transgender people like myself do exist in the world, regardless of their biological sex — which is an entirely different subject and a different thing. Some of my best friends are transgender and I would never question the identity they have for themselves, instead I choose to learn about it and embrace it. It’s a good way to propel the human race forward to learn about each other, our feelings and our comfort in our own identities – whether they happen to line up with yours or not. It’s a great way to make new friends and expand your mind.
Also, you English isn’t terrible, don’t worry!
Ok. I read what you wrote, my reference to the image derived from the reason for which it was placed there. You were talking about some “phases” of your life and about how you were in differentes ages. You wrote that: “Tried to be more “girly”. Felt more uncomfortable than ever before” and then put an image to express the concept. It’s not the dress that counts for me, it’s the idea of “girly”.
The point is: if gender does not refer to “gender roles”, what does it mean? Like you wrote in your lesson 2 (i read that before too) old gender roles are not valid anymore, so what it would mean “man” and “woman” outside of “male human being” and “female human being”?
“Gender is something ingrained in your personal identity. It’s how you see yourself”
Ok, but in reference to what? How I see myself could mean also “I see myself as a good person” or things like that, if someone identifies as a man, what he\she means with “man”?
I’m not saying that people like you doesn’t exist (where do you took that idea from?), I know that you exist and I think you are perfectly fine like that, my discussion is just about the definition you give of yourself, and the idea of “gender” being a separated thing from what you call “sex”. I’m not discussing what you wrote because your identity is not “lined up” with mine, you just talked about some concept that seemed unclear and contradictory to me, and I expressed my opinion and my doubts.
Gender Identity is different than Gender Roles. You can read several articles about it online and what several different scientists, sociologists and psychologists have to say on the subject. My comic was meant to be a concise take on myself, not a diatribe on gender identity itself. Gender identity is very real, and it is not just a construct stereotypes created by various societies. This is why when someone is intersex or transgender they usually gravitate to one gender identity or the other (or neither, or both, etc.), regardless of what gender they were raised as. As another example, my wife identifies very strongly as a woman but I would never say that she behaved purely in feminine stereotypes and gender roles.
Basically, what I am trying to say is that you’re asking me, personally, to define a nebulous subject that countless people have studied for decades and still can’t come up with a clear answer to. It’s the same with sexuality — no one knows exactly why some people are gay, straight, bisexual, etc., but that doesn’t make it any less of an identity or allow some to label it a “choice” — it just is. I don’t adhere to any particular gender roles and I identify as agendered. Another person who doesn’t adhere to any gender roles might identify as a man/woman or as genderqueer. Is there some defining trait between us that pertains to our particular identities? No. No more than you can argue the same for sexuality. And that’s simply because gender roles do not make the gender. I’m sorry there isn’t a clearer answer on the subject, like I said — it’s a nebulous concept that has a lot to do with brains, not bodies.
I just wanted to say I think you’re awesome.
I’m female, both genitally and in how I identify, but that doesn’t mean I dress girly. I wear Batman shirts and watch Transformers with my brothers and laugh at my baby sister playing with My Little Pony. I’m a girl, I just like “stereotypically male” things.
I have friends who are biologically female but identify as male and friends who… I’ve never seen them go to a public bathroom so I don’t know what they are biologically, and they don’t give a Magicarp how they identify. I know a transgender F to M.
Gender isn’t strictly a binary. I’m a 0, my boyfriend is a 1 and a few of our friends are more like a 42 or a 68 or a 0.999999 or a 0.5
It’s not anyone else’s business how you feel. I feel female, but I’m not going to press that on others. They can feel however they want. Just give me a head’s up if you don’t want me to just guess a pronoun.
Ghostbuster ARE totally more important… I used to like Venkman more, but as I grew up I liked Egon more.
Talk fungus to me baby.
I really respect you, and admire you as an artist.
Over all I feel I can relate to you in this agender sense, considering I am the same way. Can’t wait for more art
♥ this. I’m going to use this to explain it to some friends.
Long time reader and first time commenter here. I just wanted to send you a huge thank you for making a comic about the agender gender identity! I’ve never been certain what my gender is – I was raised and socialized as a girl/woman, but in my heart I feel neither male nor female. After researching non-binary gender identities, I believe agender fits me best. However, since I tend to dress femininely, don’t mind being referred to by female pronouns and experience only limited body dysphoria, I’m hesitant about openly identifying as agender to most people (even though I realize clothing/appearance/the presence or absence of body dysphoria has no bearing on gender identity).
Anyway, thanks again for sharing your story and taking the time to educate people. Reading about the thoughts and experiences of other agender people makes me feel all warm and fuzzy and just a little less alone in life. <3
I love your cats, comics, and how you teach through your art. You are a fantastical person.
As a young person who isn’t really sure about a lot of things, could you explain in more detail how you figured out that you were agender? I know for a fact that I’m asexual, but am less sure on other areas. I’ve never particularly felt that I was either gender or the other, but then I’ve never really felt that I wasn’t either.
It’s interesting how you put both sex in gender in the same ball… I never imagined it that way. I see it more like in the second picture, with sex and gender apart, with little or nothing to do with each other. If you don’t mind, can I show this to my sister when I come out? I’m trigender, not agender, but it still works to explain most of how I feel.
to be honest with you I kind of like your comics better knowing your willing to put such intimate details about yourself on the internet, its very bold.
I remember when I first learned that you two were lesbians. Nothing changed for more other than correcting an incorrect assumption I had made. Keep making awesome comics. ^_^
I really loved this one. Never thought the feeling of being a robot could be something related to be agender in some way. That could explain some things in my case. Anyway, it’s really nice to read this kind of things, and I wanted to let you know I love this comic, and mainly its main char. You will never find a comic or a good story about superheroes and so on with an agender char. So, I like when this happens. Thank you for your works. It’s really good. (and im sorry about my english… im not good enough writing it).
Excuse me, but could I translate this into Spanish?
Sure thing, we’d appreciate the effort! Our only requirements are that the translated work isn’t used for profit and is accompanied by a source link back to the original site.
Resume: I’m like tweety from Warner Bros… witch is fucking awesome!
I just wanted to take this opportunity to say how awesome you, your wife, and your cats are. Your comics always make me laugh after a long day and sometimes they make me reflectively pause as well – a great and gentle reminder that the world is far more complex than the little boxes and labels would have us believe – and all the more beautiful for it.
I have a HUGE problem with all this. The asterisk is typically used to relay the reader from the text to a side text, but it came from nor went to NOWHERE and I am THOROUGHLY displeased with that. This has made me the following: ANGERED, sad, disappointed, and oddly aroused for your lack of orthodoxy. Please do not let this happen again or I will have to stop reading this, stop respecting your cats, and bomb the French embassy.
Excuse me, I had some troubles about a sentence in the comic. “or when my body fucks off another egg,” what it does really mean? I didn’t know if that meant you get ill because you ate a bad egg, or it is related with the ovules :/ sorry. The detail/slang killed me.
It’s relating to menstruation.
As a biologist, it bothers me when people use the term “gender” because in my line of work, we use it to mean sex, which was the original meaning. I prefer to use “gender identity” when speaking about one’s non-biological feelings of sex. I guess gender is just short for gender identity nowadays, but it still bothers me. I’ll always feel that gender =/= gender identity.
I have friends that are biologists and it sometimes confuses them when older textbooks refer to gender as sex, but for the most part, they’re perfectly happy to distinguish the two. The original form of gender actually meant social roles or was used in mathematics, it wasn’t until recently that it came to be referred to as sex at all. Words change and evolve, and all we can really do is evolve with them. In Canada, for instance, there is a lot of paperwork that distinguishes sex from gender to better protect trans* people. There are college courses on gender studies, and different ones on sexology, which don’t confuse the one for the other with biological anatomy. It really depends on which area, updated texts or people you’re listening to, but I can respect your ire over the situation. It doesn’t mean the word is completely baseless as meaning gender identity and not biological sex, but I definitely understand your situation when in the last 30 years there’s been so much confusion in the English language over the two words.
done! right now i’m having problems to upload it, i will try it tomorrow. Then I will give you the link so you can check whatever you want to check and tell me if you don’t like it. I’m not good with GIMP and those kind of software, so the style is sort of plain… anyway, if you feel bad about that, and you want to improve it, i can give you the image with the layouts and then you can change and put them in the place you like more :P. (you have my mail in this form anyway)
see you later, then.
I’m really glad you made this comic because, though I ID as Genderqueer, I get a lot of the same flack. Like “How do you feel like both? Or more of one one day. and another the next?” We should just accept that gender is just a fluid as anything else because people are fluid. Again, thank you so much for making this comic!!
I know several of my friends have interesting approaches to gender identity. However, this is one I actually had not considered, though it does make sense. You don’t identify as androgynous, you identify as agendered. It’s an interesting distinction. “I don’t feel like a midway point between masculine and feminine, I feel like I’m not on the scale at all.”
It’s like… I knew the difference between im/moral and amoral, between hetero/homo/bisexual and asexual, I just never considered the difference between trans/andro/cisgendered and agendered.
Thanks for introducing me to a new concept, again showing that my own internal definitions will never be all-inclusive.
Thank you for posting this. I grew up in a sheltered environment and am trying to learn more about other people and their identities, lifestyles, etc. This was super informative!
Glad to see this explained in detail for those who don’t know. I was a tad confused in the beginning, with looking like a man, but talking about lesbian slurs, but that really doesn’t change my opinion of you. I enjoy your work, love your cats. Just thought I should say. Keep up the great work ‘you fucking asshole’! XD
This comic is really cool! My girlfriend and I identify as women, but I am attracted to both sexes, while my girlfriend is attracted to women. It’s interesting to read about your personal insight into a-gender and how it feels to you. Since neither my girlfriend or I have experience with this, I loved reading your point of view!
He, pretty cool summary!! And you look cute a a emo girl/boy/whatever! Sweeet!
At the moment im totally confused about my own sexuality, so its kinda good to read something who is also queer!
I never really knew how I identified or what to call myself in particular, but this resonates with me quite a bit. Like, this fits me to a T (even the part about creating a male alias on the internet). I don’t consider myself particular feminine or masculine, and my look is *just* neutral enough to make me appear rather androgynous – and that’s what makes me happy and feel most confident.
I frickin’ love you and your agendered self! When I first read your comics I knew you weren’t a man in sex, and that made it all the better. I relate to you in a lot of ways, even appearance, aha. And you’re just, really cool.
Oh! I can identify, the first time I joined chats I use the name Meriadoc, because I loved the name and I was crazy about LoTR. At that moment I was conflicted about my sexual identity and I felt pretty much asexual. I had some very interesting conversation with people until they realized I am a girl and then many became creeps It was really disappointing
Although I identify myself as a bisexual female I know only one person does not laugh about this. (I know few people who consider bisexuality as a possibility at all) And at this moment in my life I’m quite happy about having his support and I dont think much about the rest. Thank you for posting this!
ahhh this comic was great! i think i understand this gender identification a bit better now. thank you <3
I cannot see this comic… Anyone else have that issue?
Ahhh!! It’s really comforting and reassuring to know there are other people who see their own gender identity in the same way I see mine, and an artist I already looked up to, no less. Thank you for taking the time to draw this!
I am male but I still relate 100% to your comics. So yeah, argument extremely fucking valid on this one. For a second there I actually thought someone I knew or something was making a comic about me and my girlfriend. But then I think I hadn’t slept in 26 hours at that point.
Summary: You are good at the thing. I like how you are good at the thing. Keep being good at the thing.
I am a queer person in my Physics department. I’ve had to explain to quite a lot of people what that -really- means for me and what it could mean for other people. This comic captures so much of the language I’ve tried to express. Thank you for your charismatic writing, your beautiful art, and your fantastic self!
I think, i’ll just do the best and most UNconstructive comment : Potato.
Well…I am FtM transgender and, although I don’t understand your specific identity query, I do know what it’s like not to really identify with either gender. For a long time I felt I didn’t fit in with male or female perspectives but I think I have found myself in the whole of what it means to find yourself. Glad you posted this.
It does kinda feel like being a robot… (well, to me). But yeah, great read!
“weird, meat-covered robot” – probably the single best way to describe how i feel about myself. this concept is new to me, but ‘being a girl’ has always been this thing i didn’t identify with much or care much about. nice to know i’m not as weird as i thought i was.
This was very educational. And as a manly man who identifies as a male and has recently made friends who are of previously unknown to me genders, this helps a lot
Thank you for explaining it in such a way that even ignorants like me can understand it ^_^
I’m getting mind-fucked here trying to figure out my own gender.
My sex is that of a male, by my sex, I see myself as a male. Do I feel like a male, though? Not per se. Do I feel like a female? Not per se either.
Yet it’s rather conflicting in my head, as when I look at how I’d like to be, physically, I’m obviously male. But do I find my personality or my behavior male or female? Not per se either. Even when looking at gender roles. When not looking at gender roles I don’t think anyone can even define themselves as a specific gender, apart going on for your sex.
But I like to have the sex male, and am happy I have that sex, yet I find it hard and conflicting to find myself male gendered by my sex.
You mind fucked me!
I think you are awesome, and your comics too. Are you happy? Yes? so that’s the only matters.
A big hug from a fan from Uruguay. (a pretty funny name for a country to speak in english) xD
Hi, there is something I’d like to ask you. Not because I don’t respect your choices, but because I’m such a curious tactless asshole (and you started talking about this;))
The way I see it, sex is, just like you said, biology. Like the color of my eyes, and I don’t feel the need to identify myself by none of this. So, when I say I’m female, it’s just my body I’m talking about, like saying my eyes are brown. It doesn’t have anything to do with who I am. So, why bother?
And honestly, I think that’s great for you! For a lot of people, their sex and gender are synonymous in their mind and those elements mean absolutely nothing beyond their physical parts. But there is a significant number of people out there who either find their biological sex problematic, have some form of body dysphoria, or simply don’t feel adequately summed up by that aspect of themselves — even if there aren’t particular roles or traits tied to those things, there’s still a very definite, separate element to their identity, and that’s where “gender” factors in.
To put it in more familiar territory, would you ask a trans* man, “why bother?” It’s not so hard to accept the idea that someone can be something other than their assigned birth gender, but it seems to be when someone says, “I don’t feel like anything,” that creates this conundrum. Much like bisexuals have/had a difficult time being accepted because they are simply attracted to both genders, it seems agenders have a difficult time being understood because they should “just fit into one box or another.” [Obviously not your words, just echoing a recurring sentiment we often hear.]
I hope that clears some things up for you! And even if it hasn’t, I hope you can at least appreciate that, even though gender might not be important in your life, for others it’s a very important thing. Humans are amazingly complex creatures, and having different priorities is just one of our many neat traits.
Actually, yes, I would ask a trans the exactly same questionXD But I was just being curious, thank you for the patience.
Thanks for making a comic and posting it on the Interwebs.
thank you so much for this lovely and educational comic.
I’m glad I found this page, thank you for putting it out here. It’s given me things to think about.. At the moment I’ve not mentioned my feelings to anyone, because before finding this page I didn’t really know what words begin to explain them.
I’m only 25 but whenever I dress/act female it feels incredibly unnatural. It always has. I like that it sometimes pleases those that love me. But (to risk offending other folks through a terrible simile), I feel like a man in bad drag. 99% of the time I forget what shape my body is, or feels like, apart from that part of the month when I can’t.
I love folks dependant on who they are, and not their gender. I also don’t find people or their bodies sexy, which is hard to explain to my partner without offending or feeling I’m undermining him (“I love you, but not because you’re a man.”? I can’t even begin).
Here’s to the future and working on this particular riddle. Maybe I’ll never work it out, but it’s encouraging to know there are really people out there who understand.
In the space of…what, two years, I’ve basically gone from not knowing anything whatsoever about other sexualities to knowing several people in each named aspect as well as asexual, vaguely sexual, and several people who have described themselves, in their own words, as “f**k knows”. That said, I was completely unaware of the agender term, nor any of the terms that the other commenters have mentioned, so it’s good for me to know another area of the human existence.
As for labelling people…well I’ve never been one to offend, but lately various experiences tell me that there are absolutely no terms past, present or future that can be used to describe certain situations, and as such I’ve pretty much given up labelling anything or anyone definitively. My general rule is, if someone doesn’t offend me, I should be doing my utmost to do likewise, and beyond that I frankly don’t give a toss how they live their life because it’s none of my business. But that’s just me.
Anyway, thanks for the information, knowledge of the world is always a welcome thing!
P.S. I know all about the internet persona thing. Out of preference I usually play female characters on computer games; for three years I roleplayed a female on WoW, not a single person realised and when all was revealed, they were surprised for about five minutes then didn’t care in the slightest. Just an example of how some of the internet can be awesome, even if many aren’t.
As a Male who Identifies as Male even I appreciate this comic. I hate dealing with people who are ignorant and even though I’ve never dealt with people on this topic and its doubtful I will, I still like to be informed on such topics. I love the way you explained it using the little balls to represent “sex”, “gender’”, and “sexuality.” I’ve loved your comics since I found them on reddit and have read them all. I actually identify with you more than you might expect, and I really respect you for being able to be who you are. I even love the serious comics just as much as the humorous ones because they teach me things. Thank you for everything you do, I appreciate you.
I love how you talk about sex and sexuality so personally. I’ve struggled a lot with my persona; gender identity and just decided to give up and go with what everyone assumes and wear mens clothes a lot. But every time someone comes out with their neither female nor male self I get hope that I can be open about myself someday.
So I am curious (though I don’t know if you still read comments on older comics) why do you identify as a lesbian if you don’t identify as a woman? I always thought the two were mutually exclusive.
A.’s Wife Here: I usually reply to most comments, so I’ll answer this one for you!
My spouse doesn’t actually identify as a lesbian — that was covered recently in Lesbians 101 under the “About” page. S/he usually identifies as “K-Sexual”, in a half-joking reference to the fact that s/he only wants to have sex with me and doesn’t usually find other people attractive in that way. I identify as a lesbian myself because I’m primarily attracted to women, and I don’t think my identity changes because my spouse has no gender. I guess s/he’s like one big sex toy for me, if you want to see it that way. (As a side note, s/he also doesn’t mind when people refer to us as “lesbians” because it’s just easier for people to remember and less of a hassle to correct them and have to explain the ins and outs every single time. A.’s laid back like that.)
i liked this question, and even more so ur answer. love and sex are 2 very separate things in my eyes. as i’m pretty sure this’ll never be seen by anyone i know IRL i’m comfortable admitting to u guys that although i’m straight as an arrow, i’m secretly in love with one of my best friends whose a man. it’s not sexual to me, it’s purely emotional. i don’t wanna suck his dick, but sometimes i just wish he’d hold me in his arms all night.
i mean i’ve contemplated the idea of sexual modification (a fair amount actually) and who knows if i ever have the funds for it, maybe i will. i dunno, i don’t think i can ever really know until the opportunity presents itself. but if i ever did i know for a fact that the first person i’d go see after i healed up would be him and i would jump his bones before he could even finish his sentence. i’m not into men, it’s JUST HIM. and the only thing stopping me from having a vaguely homosexual relationship with him, is i guess because i know he would reciprocate my feelings any further than our current friendship as he’s tried having sex with a man once in the past (he had a gay friend back in high school who was willing to help him test the boundaries of his sexuality) but if i did someday decide to become a woman (sexually) that i then could give him what he wants and like i said, i’d be all over him in a instant, but i’d still be very much attracted to women over men. over time (with his help) i’d probably become more open to the idea of sex with men, but mostly i’d still be down for chicks; tits are just so soft, even straight women and gay men love.
anyway, thank you to anyone who stopped to read this, and thank you to all of you here on this site i found about an hour ago, for allowing my the anonymity to speak openly about things that are important to me. although i trust my friends a lot and feel very comfortable around them with most things, there’s still some stuff i can’t talk to them as easily about, especially since it’s my best friend’s brother, so he might find that awkward. so again, thx
After reading this I now how a deeper perspective of being gender-less and I must say you have put a whole new insight of what I am to myself into my mind. I’ve been fighting with pronouns and other labels as some would put it for a long time. I’ve called myself everything from normal to asexual but im positive this brings a better perspective to how I really feel. I think you just opened up the door to my better tomorrow. Thank you so much for this comic!
A friend of mine sent me this link, and then asked me about my experience. He felt it opened his eyes and he came to me because I’m currently figuring out my own gender and see myself as more of a blank slate that I can dress up or down whenever I want. After reading this I might be closer to agendered than anything else. Of course, I had to get a mastectomy to be able to do that, but I stopped there because I wasn’t sure I wanted to transition the rest of the way. I’m really glad he sent me this, it’s nice to see someone putting effort into helping others explain the concept. I’m also glad because it helped me to understand that maybe I could chill here in this identity for a while to see if it suits me, since I’m choosing not to move forward with testosterone or SRS any time soon. You may have just helped me find a comfortable spot. I am going to save this forever and take a look at the rest of your comic. Thanks again for your courage in explaining this.
Just got dropped here by reddit, I’ve always enjoyed your comics when I’ve come across them – And today I even learned something from one of them, I never knew being “agendered” was a thing, but it makes sense when I think about it. I guess I’m just trying to say thank you for your comics and for broadening my horizon
I identify as the same…I use the name Alex….and I talk about Batman for too much to be healthy.
Glad to know there are more ‘Alexs’ out there.
ohhh, back to the softer chin lines versus the harsh ‘block’ style you had. much preferred! In other news, I could care less about your private life. who you sleep with, why and all the junk is none of my business. if you’re happy, then I really could give a shit
K Here: Good news, everyone! We don’t create these comics for one particular person, it’s for everyone! By the overwhelming number of comments that have been particularly touched by this subject, I’d say it was meaningful to other people who read it. I’m glad gender doesn’t matter much for you, but for a lot of other people, it really does and it makes a difference to address it publicly for those that do care — for those that don’t, they can skip over it. For future reference, saying “I accept you no matter what” and “I can’t give a shit about you” come across as very different statements, even if you mean it in the same way.
Alright, since people are having civilized conversation here I want to try to add in with my thoughts on the matter. I dig the idea that one gets to define themselves according to *who* one is as a individual. What I don’t get is why one would want to say that they belong in male or female when it comes to gender roles. I, personally, would very much prefer to see such concepts destroyed, as they box in the population of our planet to much.
Some things are facts, like who we are physically, but who we are as people, and what can be expected of us should be for the person to decide. I guess what I am trying to say is that I don’t dislike the concepts of male or female as gender roles but I believe that their widespread application on people whether they themselves have specifically said they want to adhere to either group can be very harmful.
Either way, I define, and probably would be defined as male; both in gender and genitals. I don’t particularly like that definition and in some ways I deviate from it, this leads to other people thinking that I’m one thing or the other (often homosexual) and I find it annoying when these assumptions are made. My point would be that I think I get where you are coming from and I agree, these bloody definitions can oh so annoying when things start to get personal.
Thanks for being open, I think it is good to be able to talk about these things, both for the person sharing and those reading ^^
K Here: Since it’s been hashed over in the comments several times by now, I will simply say: Gender Roles ≠ Gender Identity. For some people, their personal gender (of man or woman, especially for trans individuals) is very important, and has absolutely 0 to do with this society’s perceived gender roles for either of those genders. Gender identity is very different from gender roles, and the comic doesn’t cover or acknowledge gender roles in the least, just gender identity, or rather, a lack thereof. Hope that helps clear some things up.
Thanks for this post! I (‘m blessed to) know folks all over the sexuality and gender spectrums (spectri? spectra?), and agender folks seem to both take the most flak, and be the hardest concept/presentation/existence for others to grok. I love the comics, your artwork, the writing, and am grateful for this window on your lives. I was in Columbus just this past weekend (timing!). If you folks find yourselves in Connecticut, please give a shout! Know you’ve got at least one fan who’d be thrilled to meet you in person and say “thank you!” and “keep up the good work!”
I love the hell out of your comics and it bothers me that anyone loses respect or enjoyment from someone once they know that they are female, lesbian a-gender what-have-you. For me and for this comic it got many times better but I guess that’s because I’m on the other side of the coin that I just described. These comics are some of the highlights of my week so I do enjoy them when they do come out. Quirky, cute, funny and always interesting.
As the last thing before I finish up here I think part of the problem with gender and sex organ is the tight coupling (no sexual pun intended for once) between the two. I think it’s difficult for people to grasp the concept that the two aren’t a 1:1 relationship. This is because of the strict gender roles that we still have but are slowly moving away from. Vagina means woman and vice versa.
Thanks for the comic. It was enlightening.
I really really love your comic, it’s so brilliant! And your drawing style is nice
By the way, I can reflect myself so much on you and your personallity Anna, even though I’m a boy/tiger/thingie.. although I’m a bit more feminine than you
Also I love your cats and their personalities :3 They are great! I actually had a big male cat who was a lot like Peter and also banged his head into all things he wanted and so on xD Stupid in a funny and adorable/sweet way :3
Kind Regards and hugs
I was just introduced to your comic today (kama sutra pt. 2) and I think it’s great! But were you kidding about vaccines causing autism? That has a lot more impact on what I’d think of you than your gender.
Is Pluto a planet? No. Read the vaccines causing autism the same way, and you’ll see my sarcasm and anguish at the general public being reluctant to accept new ideas smeared all over the statement.
Or, in simpler terms, no, vaccines do not cause autism — and anyone who thinks so is very silly indeed.
I wanted to write negative comment about it but seeing how much people support you I will shut up.
Heh. This… encapsulates a lot of issues I’ve had in my life. I also don’t identify as either gender, personally… but whereas you identify as agendered, I identify as both. I’ve always been pretty open in considering being physically male or female, and once you find one picture suggesting the idea of being both at once, well… yeah. So I self-identify as a hermaphrodite. I may (usually) fit more comfortably into masculine gender roles, but I don’t identify as purely male, nor purely female. I’m something else. Something that isn’t either and yet is both at once.
Hooray for being a fellow member of the odd parts of the gender continuum.
As an asexual man, I totally get that. I didn’t even care if you’re a man or woman.. You’re a person, and that’s what makes you great.
This answers a lot of the questions I had. It’s an interesting position to be in, and one I’m not very familiar with… so consider me educated.
If it means anything, my opinion of you isn’t shattered or anything. Your comics are awesome, and they have a lot of personality showing through them.
I can imagine how difficult it is, though– especially with the huge controversy of gay rights and gender identities these days. Everyone is looking to make sides, set divisions, and condemn others.
Yeah, I have religious views, and morally disagree with certain standpoints, but that doesn’t give me a right to be an indecent person to others.
I started as a fan of your comics because they’re simply hilarious. These days, while they haven’t lost touch with comedy, I see that there is a deeper side to it.
Keep it up.
Personally, now am even more confused on the concepts of genders, but I got a saying, if ya don’t understand something, don’t hate on it, don’t treat it awkwardly, just treat it as if it was not even a factor,
I just wanted to say that I only recently discovered your page after my fiancée tagged me in a repost of The Karma Sutra of Sleeping for Couples 2 she found on cheezburger. I loved the artistic style & sense of humour (her new nickname is my little hair monster) so I went looking for the source of this amazing work. I’m really glad I did now because I went back & read all the entries from the beginning up to this point. There were so many things I could relate to like the pop culture & gamer references, the Christmas star/pentagram anecdote & the general wit. Most of all Strings really struck a chord (sorry) with me. Not just because I play a bit of guitar myself but because I recently gave my niece one of my most treasured electric guitars for her 17th Birthday, passing the torch as it were. As a result it did have me in tears at the end.
At any rate I just wanted to write to say thank you for writing this particular one as I wasn’t sure what gender distinction if any to use for you, not that it matters as such to me but purely out of respect. I found it particularly interesting coming from your perspective as I’d only been aware of agender through Neil Gaiman’s Sandman comics & spin-off’s.
Thank you again for creating a comic that is consistently funny, occasionally sad & often thought provoking.
Thank you for continuing to keep the wheels in my brain turning and reminding me to think about things from other perspectives. I am at the beginning of a journey to find and love myself, and it’s hard. When I feel utterly defeated your comics cheer me up. I am not facing a struggle like many who don’t fit into standard labels do – being a white straight ciswoman commands a lot of social privilege – but I wanted you to know that your confidence gives me confidence. You are a beautiful person and I admire what part of you I can observe over the Internet. Keep drawing, keep teaching. You make a positive difference.
I’m glad you drew/wrote this so we could learn more about you and your life aside from the humorous side the comics show. I’m male, I have a girlfriend and I have straight friends, gay friends, bisexual friends and transexual friends. I don’t judge people on what they identify themselves as, I only care about them being happy with their lives. This is the point of life, finding our happiness and legacy. I am just happy to see that you love the life you’re living with your wife and cats, your family. Ignorant people need to see that, this isn’t the 70s anymore, time to grow up. Either way I hope your future is as bright as the present.
I totally agree with you. Your gender (anyone’s) is completely determined by you and your own self perception. I think your comics are hilarious (I am especially amused by the ones about your wife’s schizophrenia because I know people with the disorder), but that has absolutely nothing to do with what gender you identify with. Knowing that you think of yourself as gender neutral is nothing more to me than information.
really interesting to read! i must admit that i also was wondering abour been a male or a female, but that`s not really important, the really important thing is that the comic is about to human beings who love each other.
i actually past for phase in my life when i struggled with the idea, i have never felt female, but i reaaaaaaaally love male anatomy. and sometimes i felt atraccted to other females, but i dont think i can love one back, too… histerical.
anyway, just wanted to say that your comic just help me remember that the only imortant opinion is the one abour yourself, and maybe from the one you truly love. :3
I’m a guy and identify as ‘straight,’ yet I can identify with you more than many guys I know.
I was directed here after writing a facebook rant on the politics of being an androgyne (I identify as 50/50 male/female) – answering questions, dealing with pronoun snafus, people confusing it with being FtM, etc.
This was brilliantly drawn & written, and much of it incredibly relate-able (even if our identities differ). Thank you for this.
For people who hating or refusing to try and understand it – well, it reflects on them more than it does you. This isn’t rocket science, and some people would rather put their hands over their ears and go, “LA LA LA,” than open their minds to a new perspective.
What really bothers me is that i can’t see you on street and say “waddup mah’ nigga” Principally because you’re not black…
“What do you mean “lack an angry weasel.” You’ve got to have something down there!” Well of course, only agendered women lack the vaginal anti-rape weasel
Also, if you happen to get around to reading this comment, I’m curious: as you lack a gender identity and are neutral or whatever, are you homosexual or bisexual?
Also, I hope you provided an actual answer to those inquiring about your gender.
“are you a man or a woman?”
“accctually, I’m neither.”
that might engender someone to actually refer to you as “that fucking asshole.”
sigh… I should hope I’m not being too eccentric. Though I don’t particularly care if I’m judged by random people on the internet and trust that my oddities shant be judged by the agendered woman (oxymoron, but oh well).
Anyway I enjoy chaoslife and the demonic comics that suddenly turn into hard-core pornography (I once clicked on the link and the latest comic happened to be the one with vaginal penetration, yet I still read the rest of it, don’t you worry).
“I’m curious: as you lack a gender identity and are neutral or whatever, are you homosexual or bisexual?”
Well like that fucking asshole said, gender identity and sexual orientation are separate. So I’m not sure why being agender is prompting you to ask about their sexual orientation.
Would you define homosexual as being attracted to your sex, or your gender?
Perhaps some day our society won’t be so hung up on whether the plumbing matches the presentation. It would be nice if English had a gender-neutral pronoun for people. In the meantime, kudos to you for having the confidence to be true to yourself and thank you for putting this in such a way that those of us with firm gender identities can understand it.
When I first read your comic I never actually stopped to figure out if your persona was male or female though it did get specified with context as I went on. I am glad that you and your wife are comfortable as yourselves regardless of labels or identifiers and I hope that you continue to maintain your identities regardless of social expectations.
Keep up the good work with your comic as well as the awareness that you help to raise.
Dude If I ever meet you I’m buying you some coffee
Hi, I just stumbled on this page, so, I don’t know you or your comic very well at all. I just wanted to comment because I read this whole page and I’m still very confused. I don’t actually understand how people either associate with a gender or not. Do female gender people wake up every morning and look in the mirror and say “I feel girly today, again” and male gender people wake up and say to themselves, “I feel boyish today, again.” while agendered people do neither? I usually don’t think about this sort of thing but now I just feel like I missed something. I understand if you don’t get back to me cause I know this is probably a dumb question, but I’m serious so if you could find it in your heart please let me know!
I’ve actually just found your site today and actually I was halfway through your posted works here before I even realized that you were female (perhaps I’m just unobservant) in truth I thought the very fact that your sex/gender/relationship was not ‘normal’ but you don’t belt it out all over the comic was a reason to love the work all the more. As you said, it makes next to no difference in your day to day life, so why should you have to change the way you draw/think of yourself in your works?
Also, the hourly comic day bit about your hair? Not alarming, totally awesome hair.
*thumbs up* Good job.
I know it’s way late but I just found this comic and this kind of opened my eyes to myself. I’ve never really fit in because I’ve never been attracted to people by their looks and I’ve never been comfortable with myself. I am usually more attracted to guys but I myself dislike being a woman. Would that be considered agender or am I just a tomboy? If I am agender, how would I come out to my family, friends, and boyfriend? I’m not scared of what people would think of me, I’m scared of losing them because I “changed” and they don’t know how to react.
P.S. Why do you draw yourself without boobs? Not trying to be offensive or creepy or anything, just curious.
I’d like to fill in for them, if I could. I’m not an authority or anything, but I’ve handled my own gender identity issues before and I’d just like to say a few things.
1. Gender, sex, and sexual orientation are not very related, if they’re related at all. It doesn’t matter if you’re biologically male or female, or if you’re attracted to guys, girls, neither, both, or only a singular Filipino you met on your spring break three years ago: if you identify as a female, your gender is female. If you identify as a male, your gender is male. Seeing as you don’t sound like you identify as female, I’d like to ask, are you more comfortable with the idea of being a male? If so, then you’re not agender /or/ a tomboy. You’re a male. If you don’t identify as /either/ gender, you’re agender. Not a tomboy, or a woman, but agender.
2. It’s hard to come out to people you’ve grown up with who know you in one particular way. Nobody can tell you when the right time is. If you feel like you have to come out, then come out. If you’re not ready yet, then you’re not ready yet. That’s all there is to it.
It is very possible for you to be a male-gendered female-sexed individual who just happens to want to be with guys. If that’s who you are, then that’s who you are, and more power to you.
And for the record, she/he/Captain Agender up there doesn’t draw themselves with boobs because in real life, apparently, they’re rather flat-chested anyways. If I find the link to where they discuss this I’ll reply again to say where.
Al thought i am straight i can understand that is isn’t always that easy…
And i think many people already told you this…. keep up the good work! And ignore some people who only talk with their mouth and not with their feelings and brain!
Hi! I’m late to the party, but I’ve been a reader for a while and I wanted to say… thanks. For my part, I never really cared in that what you identify with isn’t as important as you being a smart, funny, good person. But I am always interested in learning more about people and understanding them, so thank you. Especially for the pronoun stuff because as a straight girl none of this is familiar to me and I always worry about hurting, offending, or otherwise upsetting someone. So this is informative for me if not something you ever needed to do for me as a reader. Thanks for all the free, awesome comics and all the best to you and your wife.
THANKS A LOT!!!!
I was freaking out
I’m italian an i found this comic a few days ago, and love it, but i was really confused because this is not my birth languages and i started to think that i was like you lovely red cat a littel confused!!
Now that all is clear… i keep on reading with a big happy smile !!!
me and my boyfriend joke that he is a lesbian and Im a gay guy on the inside and I think thats actually pretty true of us XD Ive always felt like I wasnt a girl and my boyfriend does lots of multitasking emotionalness, but its whatever I dont think a definition of what anyone’s gender is exists they just are who they are and same goes for sexuality that just is what it is as well cause there is just no explaining that sometimes!
Thanks for this, it made me feel that maybe my own gender confusion isn’t something to worry about and that internal debate was something I could admit to my family and friends without Armageddon getting a kick-start. I’m young, I can afford some confusion and self discovery.
In the meantime, watching my boyfriend use this to explain that my gender and my biological sex are not dependent on each other to his father was priceless and I regret not having a camera on hand.
Wow, a lot of discussion on this.
Thanks for the explanation. I usually call myself transgender. I used to cross dress as a male. But my body was never helpful in this. I have very prominent breasts. Eventually I became more comfortable with being feminine. But I don’t make a big deal about it. I don’t wear makeup or high heels, and I have short hair. I just dress in a way that makes me comfortable. Which tends to be bright colors and loose flowing shirts, with pants. I identified as lesbian for a while but I’m more into men now, not that it matters since I’m single.
The most interesting thing about your story, for me, is that you called yourself Alex. That is the name I used when I was cross dressing. Huh.
At first I thought I wouldn’t care. Then I noticed, that I actually do and that my view of you as a person change a little.
But in the end I find this incredibly hot. And _c_o_o_l_ (probably need more ‘o’s on that one).
But honestly, such a thing wouldn’t probably change the way I treat a person. May be holding a door?
A very interesting opining on its own. Made me thinking, thank you for that.
i kinda know how you feel. as myself being a transgender male, but i guess its different knowing i am the opposite gender regardless of my body.
I could not agree with you more. Gender is for each person to decide on its own and who cares what dangles or does not dangle between your legs. You are who you are and it is your decision, based on your experience and your feelings. Other can got eat a rock or something if they have problem with that.
P.S. Pluto is and will be a planet
what if you feel that your a wolf trapped in a person’s body?
OH MY GOD THANK YOU UGGUUUUU~ I was originally going to write you a thank you email but i figured if the comments were opened it was because you didn’t want a flood of emails and i’m sure my comment will be lost in the sea of comments and yes this is a really long run-on sentence but i’m excited and happy and had to say thank you thank you thank you
I’ve been active in queer communities in a while and although i see plenty of transgender/genderqueer discussion within the community and quite a bit in my own personal sphere, i hardly see the specific agender subset discussion in EITHER. It’s always, like, a small inclusion in a large infographic, or an honorary mention. It’s just SO refreshing to see some visibility. Visibility is so important. AND it’s presented in an amazingly, well-done, nothing-left-out, super considerate way. Andandandand ugh, i just, couldn’t even ask for more right now. So one last time, thank you for creating this and thank you for speaking out. <3
I will now refer to you as person
Ah, so there’s no umbrella for the pronouns, and we (people who wish to refer to said agendered person in conversation) just have to Ask? That clears up what I’ve been wondering, thanks.
On the subject, maybe a new pronoun is in order… Thee, Ye, Xe, Zhe, idk what.
What do you think?
Congratulations on explaining what is obviously a sensitive subject. Now: MORE CATS, less sex. Rah RAh RAH
Thanks so much for posting this. I love this comic and I think it’s fantastic and brave that you confront issues like this head on. Please continue being awesome!
Thank you! This describes me almost perfectly. Now when people online want to be ass hats about it, I’ll just link ‘em here. Much less troublesome/repetitive/obnoxious. :3
nah i totally feel ur point of view on the subject. some friends of mine and i had a conversation a few months ago about sexual identity (it came up in 1 of them’s psychology class) and being that they’re kin to me (family is more than blood in my opinion) i was comfortable enough to tell them that honestly i feel i identify more as a women than a man. it’s probably about 60:40 (F:M). i like to think i have the best of both worlds. i lack the uber machoism stereo-typically associated with guys, but still have their general douchebagery. and i have a much more feminine way of going about my intimate relationships, but i don’t that irrationality that women stereo-typically get when they’re upset. i specified “stereo-typically” for the reason that i think those are more a product of our society and the people we grow up around, and learn our ideas of gender from. i could delve deeper into how i feel i have bits of both genders, but it’d take too long and i’ve typed enough alrdy. so to conclude, although i’m not only okay with it, but preffer to be spoken of with male pronouns, i think of myself more like a chillaxed tom-boy than a guy most of the time. just thought i’d show u a lil’ support since this is a topic i’ve thought about a lot, and i feel it doesn’t get addressed enough, even with how open our society “appears” to be.
Comics like this and “What’s Normal Anyways” are the best. When I’m having bad days it’s nice to come online, catch up, and be reminded that I’m not completely alone. Keep it up, you guys are awesome. ^.^
I started reading your comics while I was in the hospital after I tried to kill myself. I was actually thinking about trying again but then my friend sent me an e-mail with a bunch of links to web comics yours being the first. I’ve been struggling with gender and sexual identity for a while now. you guys inspired me to not give up hope and that it’s okay to be anything you want no matter what other people say.
I’ve been backtracking through the archives, and decided to drop my two cents here. Why? It’s the Internet! Everyone gets a say, no matter how stupid or contrived their point is!
I’ve always been the “man in the shadows”, as it were. Silently gathering informationon huma I simply don’t understand. As such, I’ve rubbed shoulders with every major subgroup there is, and very few people explain their perspective as you have (by the by, you have no idea how damned weird people can get), and it’s refreshing to gain insight without prying. Now, while I’m admittedly grating (basically, once I’m mad, everyone around me will suffer, I guarantee it), I try to be a generally okay person. But it is insane to attempt to not trod on people without having any idea as to their bits of weirdness.
If you could understand that, then you know that it is my intention to thank you. Now, I will fuck up far less around the agendered. Piece of humanity number 9 of 700, 812, 032 (and rising) is filed away.
I am a guy genetically. I’ve always used bisexuality straight. It was easier for others to understand.
I never knew that there were other people like me.
I usually go by the term ‘Genderqueer’, and when I saw this I nearly cried.
I’m not alone finally. It makes me love these great comics even more!
I really appreciate this post, and your comics in general. It’s nice to have something with this much popularity be accepted. It’s something that a lot of people struggle with, myself included, and it’s just nice to see a positive reaction to it for once.
Bet this has been said but I think the gender-neutral ‘xe’ pronoun set might be suitable.
I personally don’t like labels in general, and tend to use whatever gets me out of the conversation with the least amount of dealing with people. Most of my friends see me as a bisexual man, because that’s easier to explain than “omnisexual agender”.(Some even assume I’m hetero.) I just think what’s between a person’s legs is a very small part of the person, and that includes myself.
That said, I simply cannot understand all these people who have turned their backs on you. Most guys I know, if they had an awesome intelligent fun friend and they later found out the friend was biologically female, they’d think “Cool!”…perhaps followed by “Should I hit on her?” I don’t know any guys who would think “WOAH! She was a girl!? I HATE HER NOW.” Maybe a couple of girls I know…but that’s rare as well.
Okay I’m really confused now…
It seems like nowadays there’s so much discrepancy over everything… Nobody can be who you are, without someone questioning it…. I’m starting to not even know who I am anymore. There’s so many terms and everything and things just keep getting more muddled.
What I don’t get is this… I know I’m a female, I’m straight, I don’t have an issue with my body or who I am… but I also don’t give two shits if someone mistakes me for a guy. I’ve never been girly, I never do anything with my hair, I wear minimal makeup if any at all, and my wardrobe consists of jeans, a t-shirt, and a jacket.
I’ve been mistaken for a guy plenty of times (especially when I wore tripp pants) but it never bothered me. If someone referred to me as “he” or “him” or “that guy” I rarely if ever bothered to correct them.
So I don’t get it. Does that make me agender, or just some laidback person that doesn’t give a shit?
Let me start with saying that your identity is your own and that you are autonomous in the process of establishing it.
However I just don’t get why you don’t reject identifying in gender terms altogether.
You said it yourself. The concept of gender is a very broad thing and not clearly defined, yet it supposedly is narrow enough for you to state yourself as agendered because you do not identify with it. If the arbitrarily, socially constructed ideas of a gender that implicitly reside within society do not fit you, why choose a third option ?
Why not say: My sex is not integral to my personality. Why not say: my penis isn’t Bell curved to every biological generalization or having vagina is no indication for a personality trait.
If we still continue to identify ( or don’t) with our associations of a sex, we keep employing a system that is both vague and arbitrary. “I feel male or female” means so very little because everyone has different associations of them. Sometimes it sounds as basing an identity on a hair colour to me, because it in itself has so little effect on personality. ( assigned gender roles are of course huge influences, but again arbitrarily assigned by people to a gender and not the result of the sex in itself)
Personally I can say I am a man, because it means nothing more than having a penis to me. I attribute nothing more to it than that. All my traits I call not male, but Sonny.
With these two cents of mine, I also leave you my compliments for your artwork and my kindest regards
First of all, thank you for the kind words!
Secondly, I think, by your particular wording, you don’t mentally separate the terms of “gender” and “sex,” and only regard physical traits as the defining factor in either scenario. While that might be one way to look at things, it’s certainly not the only way, nor is it necessarily how most people see things, for better or worse. As I’ve mentioned before, “sex” is a person’s biology and physical make-up, and “gender” is a mix of biology, psychology, and society — a distinction even the World Health Organization endorses. So, while I can say that my biology is definitely female and I don’t intend to alter it, I can still paint my gender as a big grey area with no worry of feeling disingenuous to scientific reasoning.
Psychology and societal expectations still play an enormous part in day-to-day life, and it would be naive at best to say that gender doesn’t matter in the big picture. That isn’t to say I approve of how much gender matters or the differences/traits ascribed to each one, but that’s just how the world works for now. I would feel more disingenuous to say, “yes, I’m definitely a woman/man,” even if that would be easier to understand for others. For most people, their gender feels “right” to them, there’s no question or hesitation, and that’s just not the case for me. It never has been.
Because we made a comic on the topic, people sometimes come away with the impression that this is a big part of my personality; it isn’t. I probably think about gender just about as often as the average person, which is pretty much never. It doesn’t really enter into my behavior, clothing, conversations, etc., it’s just as inconsequential as having blue eyes to me. That also means I don’t have a revelatory answer to “why not just be a woman/man?” other than “because I’m just not.” It’s as normal and natural a part of my life as being a man is to you.
To put it another way: other than physical traits, can you adequately describe what defines a woman without using stereotypes, generalizations, and/or gender roles? Even if the answer is “no,” would you still feel weird about someone labeling you a woman?
Thank you for replying to me !
After reading your clear and well structured response, I realized that I disagree with you on very little.
I have the luxury to live in a society ( or atleast in a part thereof ) where gender is not forced to play a big in my life and to say that we can all just disregard them is ofcourse a little bit to naive. We cannot escape the cages we do not perceive. I wouldn,t know how deeply those chains leave imprints on a person, so I wholeheartedly agree with everyone who wishes to escape them. But I do wonder if it could be different.
To answer your question: I can not define a woman without the use of physical traits (internaly and externaly) because that is the only way I define sex. Gender is naturally a very different thing and also the central aspect of my point. A biological male can be made to feel fitting to a male, female or agendered through different social channels within a community and a female vice versa resulting in a very personal experience. But these social constructs are all not justified. They are generalizations, based on archaic implicities or stereotypes. So when we are influenced to feel different from our sex on unjustified reasons, should we continue these feelings or reject them ?
For example, sometimes strangers address me as ma’m when I am a little obscured from view due to my hair and mannerism. They then get a better look of me and apologize and certainly i feel a bit weird that it wasn’t clear. Then I understand that they applied a generalisation because they only had the hair to base themselves on. Perhaps I would’ve done the same thing, would I’ve been them. So when people assume that I am female because they had no conclusive evidence for my sex, I reject the feeling of not feeling male. When people out of spite or jest call me female or feminine, I also reject the feeling of not feeling male, because this time they are not justified for not calling me a man when I do not display ‘average man behaviour”
I have no reason to submit to that feeling when my behaviour is always compatible with my sex.
It is again in privilege that i can reject such inherent concepts and can only be humbled by the struggle of other people with these issues in less accepting places. But I do think that we musn’t let other people or society in general, let ourselves be made to feel disenfranchised towards our sex. That it hard and difficult, almost impossible sometimes, but in the end because I reject the ‘socially constructed’ male
I know that somewhere at the end on the slope of a Bell curve, being male and my personality are natural and compatible.
Again, I might seem more dissent from your message, but I hold your sincere discussion of this personal issue in the highest regards.
Thank you. For all these comics, they’re awesome and my girlfriend and I spent a fair bit of the evening devouring them. <3
Heh. Crotch giblets.
And by way of an intelligent comment, let me say that I’d like to live in a world where everyone got to decide who they are in whatever sense you can come up with.
I’d like to, bit I don’t. Yet. Hope springs eternal.
*but. Sigh. Exit intelligent comment, shamed by fat fingers.
You put into words how I feel about myself with this comic. I’m a female by birth and am currently trying out feminine styles for the first time (and honestly struggling with it. I’m partially wondering if I am doing that because I have a boyfriend whose family hates me because I’m a female with short brown hair and I dress very androgynously). But this is the first thing that I found that really resonates with me regarding my own identity. And for that, I thank you. For the last few months, I thought I fit under bi-gendered but this makes more sense to me.
Haha, I love your (rant) at the beginning. It brightened my day to see this comic. Rock your gender on.
It was just a few minutes ago that i first came across the word ‘agender’ and was confused. A quick Google search brought me to your comic page.
Shows how truly sheltered I am. Pretty pathetic.
Anyway… thank you for showing and taking the time to explain.to those of us who are only just now learning and trying to understand. I personally like to THINK of myself as someone who’s open-minded, but as this showed me, there’s still a lot I don’t know or understand. But I am willing to make the effort to try.
Will now go read your comics. Many Blessings.
As someone who also identifies as agender, but doesn’t mind which pronouns get tossed they’re way, i really REALLY enjoyed this comic. I’m backreading through everything now, and it’s amazing. I actually started reading this with the very narrow heteronormative view that you were a hetero couple!!! it wasn’t until I spied the lesbians 101 link in the bottom corner that I clued it.
and now i am spamming a storm on twitter about how much i’m into this. so, so into this.
I love the images of your “angsty and confused ” phases. A lot of people, like yourself, are confident and comfortable in their gender and/or sexual identity to the point where its only important to talk about when others question it. This makes me feel like it shouldn’t be a topic at the forefront of my brainspace. Being reminded that it wasn’t always like that for you makes me feel like its okay to be going through this.
Also your webcomic in general is totally badass, as I’m sure you know.
Glad you posted it. Some recent studies on the subject said there were over 60 (can’t remember the exact number) actual genders, since we can have more or less of each part inside of us. It’s just that, for you, you stand in the exact middle, wich is fine for me.
As for myself, I just got a little bit more of the girl part, but I still have some hard time defining by those standards, most often. I totally know what you mean, I reckon.
I have one thing to correct you about, well, less to correct, since it wasn’t wrong, you just omitted to mention it.
That one thing is that Ghostbusters is still more important.
Also, Hi, just found the comic, did not immediately realize you/ your character was a biological woman at first. But also did not matter a whit once I did realize.
Your an Alex?! I’m an Alex!
Damn, I think I understood most of it.. that’s a first. And it happens unexpectedly.
In my home country all debates or explanation attempt concerning the gender immediatly becomes a fight or a rant, and I end up leaving before the end. I am very pleased by the neutrality and the clarity of your explanation, and I think I will start investigating the english speaking web for more answers.
I am very glad I ran into your comic. I feel educated. Thank you.
I’m your follower such a long time but i never had the courage to write.. my english is shitty, so maybe i can not say what i wanna say. Now i’m a little bit ill, just reading again your archive and thought that this time i can make it and write.. it dosen’t matter if u read it or not, i just wanna do it.
From the biological perspective: i’m a girl.
When i was little i thought that i’m a lesbian.. girl’s in my eyes were little beautiful creatures who needed to be protected from boys. They_were_creatures. And boys too. They were creatures too. And I? I was something. In that days i was not Me, i was just something.
When i was with my first boy it was like a miracle. He was a little bit girly and if i wanted to switch, he became every time manly. I felt like i’m in safe.. i can be myself. I was whole.
After we broke the feelings stayed – i felt like a robot, i liked boys and girls in the same time, in the same way. They stayed creatures, but this time they all were alike. Beautiful creatures. And I was Me. Nothing more, nothing less. Everything was in the right place.
After this bit by bit i fell really deep in love with a guy. I was happy but it was a little uncomfortable. He said that he knows that i can be more like a woman.. and i tried to be, and yes, it worked. But more i was like his idol i was more.. less? In the end I was not Me.. just an empty pretty face. He left me behind. In this time my best friends were gone too. I was there with many feelings, with many thoughts. I couldn’t tell “what” I was. Before this it was never a big deal for me having big boobs or little, being fat or thin. Whatever. But that time i really felt disgusted for my body.. i watched it with a critical eye. I was sad. I was angry. Someone changed me and left me behind with this new Me, who was not Me and I didn’t knew what to do with “it”.
Nowdays i’m not sure what am I, but i feel ok again, so it dosen’t really matter for me.
I like your comics beacuse in your stories the everydays with your wife is the same peace and happyness what i felt one day.. and what i wanna feel one day again:) u 2 are really lucky!
So: thank u for making this awesome work, stay cool and keep going!
With luv: Kriszti
So if you don’t care what gender you are referred to, why do you go out of your way to point out you are ungendered? Given that gender is just a convenient way to facilitate various societal interactions, why do you seek to slow them all down instead of just picking a gender that doesn’t require special explanation. In many states you cannot legally use the men’s bathroom; at the hospital, you better check the female box or you’re going to get the initial wrong drugs in an emergency; if you don’t identify as female to security you will likely cause surprise and make the frisker uncomfortable and possibly get them in trouble. “Female” today has the widest range ever of possible behavior types.
So, since *you* “don’t care”, just identify as female as the most functional answer and move along. You’re slowing down the line.
I can tell your reading comprehension is a little low, considering the majority of your questions were answered in the comic, and even those that weren’t have been subsequently answered throughout the comments section. Furthermore, you’ve managed to completely confuse the difference between “gender” and “sex,” which was something we covered in the very top of the comic, with large, colorful diagrams. I’m sorry I can’t make this easier for you, but perhaps if you spent more time reading and less time watching what I can only assume is Barney and Friends, you’d suss out things more easily for yourself.
Hey man, don’t diss Barney! Barney taught me a lot! (Like fearing the color purple, damned creepy dinosaur.)
As a 47 year old man It doesn’t matter to me weather you are male or female. I think of of you as a talented and funny writer and illustrator. I learned more about Agendered in the the last 15 minutes reading this comic. Keep writing , loving your wife and trying to educate old dudes like me. Danny
I don’t know if you read these anymore but I wanted to say thanks for making this, it helped me understand a lot about some of my friends and myself.
It’s a confusing time in my life, I’m growing into an adult and more or less am just now discovering so many things about the world and myself. To most people I’m considered extremely odd since I’ve never really differentiated in my mind between the genders, and being sexually a male it’s earned me a lot of flack in the area I live in.
But I never questioned it. I wrote myself off as asexual and generally withdrew inwardly into myself till I met a person online about a year ago. Sexually they were born a man and always felt like they should have been a woman, and while if I understand well this is different then being agendered it still made me question myself since I never viewed her as male or female, just who she was.
I honestly haven’t been sure what to think of myself since then. I’ve spent the better part of a year very insecure of myself in this way. And then I found this today. I don’t understand how it applies to me yet, but it feels right, if that makes sense…
Thank you for making this. I’ve been given a lot to think about now, a lot I can start to understand about myself.
Your point got me thinking. There are also a lot of people in the world whose gender is part of their personality, in how they act, talk and even walk. They want to identify themselfes as what their sex is. That can also be seen in transgender people.Their gender is important for them, but that doesn’t has to be the norm. I think the main problem people have with agender and asexuality is that they don’t understand the concept of it, when you can talk about it as an ‘concept’ in itself, because they can’t rely to it. Either gender and sex are important for them. In social interaction and … flirting, whatever. For them it is ‘you choose to be something’, how you identify yourself in society. Where we come up with the main problem of every possible thinking haha. Joke. But growing up with a gender- and sexorientated environment, and live by that, for example how you dress and how you interact, there is also a concept built up with that. There is a he and a she, some ‘choose’ to be gay, some choose to be another sex, thus they identify a gender with it. That’s not the concept of agenderness, and that’s what most don’t understand, but it’s important to make them understand, through comics like this. If they don’t understand that’s not your problem, because trying to explain is all that can be done.
(Probably I floundered at some point, but what I wanted to say came through, I hope. :D)
Wish you a good day. Bye.
I stumbled my way here and am so glad I did. Thanks for sharing your perspective! The cartoon look combined with the smart and clear discussion is tops in my book
This opened my eyes so much. This one little comic helped shed a light on things and helped me figure out a lot of stuff. Thank you so much!
I just wanted to tell you this whole “agender” thing is a big relief to me.
I mean I always felt like being considered a woman was kind of a burden (a woman must be this and this, must do that and that… “try to act more girly”, “you should wear dresses”, “why don’t your wear make-up?”..), but at the same time i could not identify myself as a man (I was a tomboy when I was a child and there was a time I actually wanted to be a boy… )
After reading your description of “Agender” I can connect…I’ve always been kind of conflicted about the gender thing and I’m still in the process of trying to figure that out (I still don’t know if I’m just being feminist or actually feel like an a-gender person…)… Even years after I’m trying to find an answer, and exactly because I’ve always been told there were only two choices: you can either be a girl or a boy and not both! But how can you feel comfortable in your own body and mind when you’re forced to pick a side when neither of them feel “right”?
Anyways so many things just to say : thank you to give your testimony and experience on the “Agender” thing. I think I’m certainly not the only one to say that your feedbacks can give lots of comfort and help people understand and slowly enter the process of accepting who they are.
Keep going! I love your blog and your comics!
This was very eye opening to me about an aspect of personal identification I rarely thought about. It may have helped me with some things about myself too, but only time will tell. Also Crotch Giblets…
I found that reading about and ‘getting’ how Buddhists meditate and come closer to their Nirvana really helped me stop caring about gender. Exactly as you said above: my body exists and it has components and I couldn’t really care otherwise. If I were required to put myself on a spectrum I’d just stand there with the pin wavering from end to end because I’ve managed to not care about gender for so long that I would keep weighing up different parts of my brain and maybe they’d lean one way, maybe the other, but I’d never be able to nail it down because I’ve just never cared enough to do so.
(actualy, that’s a minor lie, between the ages of 7 and 9 i was bullied enough that I pretended to like a football team so that the mental impression would match the body a little more closely and i might not get bullied so much and it sort of worked until i realised just how hard I really didn’t care)
(ANYWAY. tl;dr: check out buddhism and the concept of nirvana (and more importantly the idea of never getting too attached to anything) I sure as heck never became buddhist and I’m not telling anyone else to either, but it gave me a good insight into what was then an entirely new state of mind and everything clicked into place quite nicely after that)
This helped me a helluva lot with my identity, thankyou so much!
I love this post so very much. It’s great to see someone who realizes that someones sex organs have so little to do with personality and relationships. You did a fantastic job at explaining! Thank you for this post.
In all honesty; this confused me to no end. I tried to read through it all (sssllloooowwwly) and even tried to check it out on the net. The closest explanation that i can understand is that (and correct me if i’m going the wrong way) this is some kind of psychological opinion as to how you see yourself.
I hope this doesn’t sound too selfish of me, but as far as i’m concerned, you have artistic talent and as long as you continue to use and share that talent, then that’s just fine! Who cares about the rest?
I’ve commented on this before, but I wanted to thank you for this indepth look into the relatively complex topic of gender mechanics, especially because it’s simple enough for most people to get. I have pulled this specific comic out a number of times, most recently when one of my friends came out as agendered, and a number of other friends began to react, well, negatively. I just wanted to thank you, and voice my love for you, your wife, our work, and everything you do. Keep it up, and stay well!
Thank you so much for this! I also identify as agender and it is sometimes so much easier to send someone here to read about instead of having to explain it over and over again. Props to you.
Huh, so there was a term like that. Should have guessed.
Though I personally feel the idea of identifying your gender is kind of stupid from the get-go. I mean, as this is a psychological construct, it feels like trying to use a D&D alignment IRL.
I love it. We need more people to be comfortable with themselves. As a bisexual man who has so far related to your personality in every way so far, I relate to this as well. Love your comics.
Wow. I’m agendered! Educated as a male, but i do’t feel to belong to a gender or another. And who cares? I’m fine with myself.
Thank you for the educomic, love your style!
I love you both !!! I also identify as agender and hope to find myself a wife one day !!! Totally can identify with ChaosLife as something I really hope to see in the near future !!! Thank you for all your wonderful drawings !!!
Nobody’s ever going to make it down here. Oh well.
I’ll let ya know right now, the very first comic I saw of yours, I knew you were… Well, both a chick, and not. Being a Technomancer (Technopagan, one whose soul is literally connected to the internet; thonk of it as spiritual Wi-Fi), I *felt* your agenderedness….ess. I understood right away, probably more accurately than most people, exactly what the fucking shit was going on.
It’s a calming feeling, reading your comics and feeling your sense of personal peace with yourself. More often than not, the digital media I’m bombarded with leaves me withered and desheveled, finding any excuse to leave the internet so the interfering internet emotions don’t fuck me up too terribly. This is not only a pleasant break from the nets, but charming, motherfucking hilarious, and entertaining, right from the first comic aaaaaall the way back there.
Please don’t stop. :3
It took me a while to understand that there is no real correlation between gender, sexuality and sex.
My partner helped me get my head round it and now I see that what you are is irrelevant, it’s who you are that matters.
So, I’m really glad I found this and will now have to go read the other comics. I’m still trying to figure out what exactly my gender identity is, but recently I’ve kind of been leaning towards genderfluid and spending a majority of my time as agender/genderless. I’m still trying to figure out if there’s a difference between those last two.
I’d like to describe my gender, but to be honest, I’ve tried a lot, and it always ends up as a multi-page rant that never seems to clarify anything. For the most part, I’d say I feel pretty much how you described, except for about 75% of the time instead of all the time, and with the addition of some dysphoria. Though most of the time I could agree with the sentiment of feeling like a robot, when it comes to genitals, I still get the usual dysphoria, except I have no clue what I would rather have, seeing as there’s not really a genderless set here.
How do I know if I identify outside the binary? I am in a female body married to a straight man; however, I have almost nothing in common with other women except for the monthly visitor. Sometimes I like to dress up (but usually just in a nice top and black dress shoes…NEVER heels), and I never wear makeup. I hate shopping for clothes. I obviously don’t fit in with society’s definition of female… Can I still identify as a woman? Not sure. ..I definitely don’t feel like a man.
EEEK!!!! I LOVE IT!!! This reminds me so much of me and my wife! She’s going through the girly thing again, but she me to use female pronouns for now! We both had a good laugh, but it’s so true. I love Chaoslife!! Write more!!! Me and her need more things to laugh about so we can spend less time frowning.
Hiya! I am so thankful to the friend that introduced me to your site.
I will now just show this page to anyone that has questions about gender and especially the people I have encountered that have an issue understanding the difference between gender and sexuality.
Your way of explaining things is so simple, logical and hilarious. Thank you so much for sharing so much of yourselves in such a public forum – it really is making the world a better place by educating and giving the gift of laughter.
Cheers to you! xxx
Hi there, lovely lot! I’ve just discovered your comics and I love them. I’m personally (as a friend of mine says) “heteronormative”: cis, hetero, monogamous,… the whole pack. But thanks to some of my friends I’ve learned that there’s a whole different world out there no one had told me about. And I’m glad there are sites like this one where ignorant people like me can learn all the other possibilities that exist. So keep it up!
P.S. I love your cats pretty much. :__)
This makes me really happy. I’ve identified with the same thing for awhile. I am both and I am neither. I love my body the way it is. In my third year of college I tried to slowly introduce the idea of it to people and honestly it caused more headache for everyone. No matter what I said people just couldn’t seem to wrap they’re heads around it. Even my closest friend, doesn’t understand how that doesn’t make me gay. I like men, it has nothing to do with my gender.
Annnyway, tangents. Your comics are awesome please do carry on being so.
I just want to make one comment about Jung… Jung did have a lot to say about rigid gender roles. He was reporting what he observed. But he never implied that we have to stick to them. He supported the idea of “individualization” — the process of becoming yourself — as the goal, and, essentially, abandoning rigid roles that don’t suit. I think he would have been fascinated by agender and would want to explore it and the people who live it.
I agree completely, I think Jung would have been all over different identities.
I absolutely love this. I just have one question that i ask my friends at some point in their lives weather they identify or not: What public restroom do you use? (The only reason I ask is so I know who will understand me when i start ranting about filthy ladies rooms)
The one with the shortest line.
Haha!!! Thats was the best answer I have ever read in my entire life! I wonder if that could be made an international thing…? Unisex restrooms with multiple stalls all over the place!!! Although… what about all the haters and potential weirdo’s? I could really care less and I’m a little Catholic girl. Just as long as I don’t have to beat the crap out of some person with my pants down, it’s all good.
Its pretty sad that people don’t respect others. Im Catholic, and Im not supposed to agree with about 99% of this stuff, but agreeing and respecting are two totally different things. Ignorant and immature people are what ruin things. To be honest, I really don’t mind people having so many different versions of sex and gender (whatever people feel comfortable with). If humans can be born intersex, I think humans can be born with same sex attractions or both. NEEERRRRR!!!! So many different things to consider!!! Idk. I just want people to live happily, and not kill each other mentally, emotionally, physically, and spiritually.
All the love to y’all from a little Catholic girl!!!! I apologize for all of those people who consider themselves Catholic, but don’t really act like one. I think they mean well, but are just too stupid or are ignorant to the actual teachings of the Church and against basic and universal laws of morality. … Meh, just a pile of turds. Hopefully one day they will learn to play nice.
I know you’ve probably heard this a lot, but thank you. This really helped me understand the concepts behind agender self-identification much better than I did before. I know someone who does not identify with either gender, and I never minded or anything– I was simply curious about it, but not sure what to ask or even what I was “allowed” to ask, for fear of being impolite or imposing cis-female ignorance on my friend. I get it now, so thank you.
im sorry to hear that people get…upset, about you being agendered. i dont see why it matters, i came here to read funny comics and im getting just that. please keep up the fantastic work!
a zillion people have commented on this, but I still had to say something. I’m going to be 51 in January. I’ve never heard of agendered until a couple of weeks ago. This page REALLY helped me!!!! I’ve been struggling with not fitting in to either gender my whole life. You’ve shed light in an easy to read way, and that helped lift a burden from me. THANKS
Bah, I don’t care what your genders or gender identities are. You and your wife are absolutely adorable, and so is your comic.
While I’ve been reading this comic I always thought of you as a boy. And I was a little surprised when you said you are a agendered. But I’m approving this, lots of my friends are lesbian, gay and so on. And A while back i had trouble finding out who I really was and what gender I thought I was most comfy with. And I fought long and hard and actually figured out that I don’t care, and that people just have to accept who and what I am. I was also regretting some choices I made back then, and honestly… I still do. But so what? I mean, that’s what made the person I am today, and I like who I am today. Some people judges other people too much for who they are and whenever its a female or a male.
I am a female-feeling woman but totally get your point. I never actually understood why people connected biology, sex and sex life so much since two of those are more of a personality thing. Since you also can be sensitive or not, or be more active or lazy just as a person I think it’s pretty much what a person just feels. Why should one person not feel as none of the two (which are too less) given opportunities of what defines gender nowadays?
Thanks for that great comic
Just found your stuff and all I can say – GREAT (also your lesbian 101)!
I’m a bisexual cisgender man and I have many friends with all kinds of genders (cis, trans, agender etc.) and sexes – within “our circle” of friends this never had been even a topic to talk about. It’s just natural for us to accept each other the way they are.
But sometimes it is so hard to explain heterosexual cisgender people these concepts – your comics are really helpful!
That was a lot of words.
I left a reply, I dont know what to say. I wish I was a rock I guess. Rockman. Constantly stoned. Idk. Genders are stupid. But then again, humans are dumb. So…. oh well? I dont know. Keep up the…. uhh…. metnaður. There’s a word for you.
Wow, I love finding a new source of awesomesauce! This is really great, and timely. Thanks so much for producing this.
I hope it’s okay to just add a few 0,01 €
I read quite some of the comics without getting aware of your gender identity.
Got some glimpses. Frankly, Lesbians 101 confused me a little …
Anyway, I’m fine with that.
I guess it’s pretty close to how real-life would be okay.
Thanks for sharing and all the comics!
I read all your comics since yesterday and I just wanted to let you know that I really enjoy your writing and drawing. Both of you deserve a medal for helping people open their minds and understand issues that the society chooses to hide under the carpet.
I can “label” myself as a heterosexual female and I have never questioned my gender, sex or sexuality. Of course, the others did that for me. In my teens I dressed as a boy cause I felt more comfortable. I had short hair. I liked other kind of music than the sugary pop that my classmates enjoyed. All the above combined with the fact that I didn’t have a boyfriend at that time resulted to the lesbian label,… that lasted all the way through the university. This made me look a bit into things that, well, didn’t matter to me personally since i knew I was a girl who liked boys, but I had to know. It was not exactly something that is taught in school.
I guess I want to say that even if I had a tiny share, I cannot imagine what amount of psychological pressure you must endure just to show to the others the obvious: that you deserve respect, love and marriage!
Since I moved abroad I have been taking yoga classes in a bar that is known for its LGBT public. As much as I wanted to consider myself as open-minded, I realised I was feeling a bit uncomfortable around homosexual women. I guess I was feeling exposed because I was receiving some “male” vibes during a “female” fitness class. I felt guilty and ashamed for that matter and I talked about it with a friend of mine, who is really more at ease than me, only to realise that I was somewhat afraid of something I had not actually encountered until that moment. I had never known or had any friends that would admit they have a different sexual orientation or that they are agender. I didn’t know. I didn’t care maybe. I am trying though. Your writing helped me see the things from your perspective. I wanted to say that your comic is a social message to any gender out there. Thank you!
I apologise for this long text/confession, I hope I didn’t make a lot of mistakes in writing this.
PS. I think you make a lovely couple and I really like Konstantin and Peter! You are a true family! Keep up!
> It doesn’t help that in the English language, they are essentially similes to one another.
It’s not so bad. In the Russian language, they are literally the same word. Historically and linguistically, in our culture sex defines gender and vice versa. And by today’s standards, that’s rather sad.
I didn’t even realize there was a difference before I encountered these two words while studying English.
WOOOO!!!! Awesome. I appreciate the info. Really cool.
Great thing, thanks lots!
Back in 1970 I was born as a boy. I grew up doing some “manly” things like engineering while others like watching sports are so boring. I find it particularly silly that some think they have to “prove their manliness” as if it was a specific quality and being “not manly” is bad. I look like a man, I have a beard because it’s more practical and feels better. All sex specific organs healthy and working. Anyone I know would call me a man.
I’m asexual – not erotically drawn to males, females or anything. I dislike “traditional gender roles” and really think there are more important questions in life than whatever boring gender you belong to. I’m for total equality of males, females and whatever there is in all aspects of life. I treat my male and female friends the same. Even those who were born one gender and now define themselves as another (incidentally I have both males ex females and females ex males among my friends).
So while I’m a man by many definitions, it’s unimportant to me. I could as well be something else, it wouldn’t be much of a difference. Ok, I have no idea what it feels like to have a period: no man has. I will never know what it’s like to give birth (and it’s unlikely I’ll ever be anyone’s father either). I’m ok with what I am and at the same time it’s unimportant.
(So why am I reading this and writing a lengthy comment? Because, somehow, it strikes exactly what I’m thinking … Same as when I discovered the advantages of being introvert.)
And I’m barefoot at least as often as the main characters of your comic. Hehe.
Some of those comments made are just awful, I hope you know not all of us think that way! I admit I was a bit curious about your gender and/or sex, but it doesn’t change how much I love your comics!
“What do you mean you ‘lack gender’? You have something down there!”
“What do you mean you ‘lack an angry weasel’? You have something down there!”
I just found this site and love it, this post in particular. I’ve been thinking about gender categories and characteristics of masculinity and femininity and how in society we’re expected to fit one or the other. Thank you for sharing your perspective and with comics! which just makes it even more awesome.
It’s interesting to read this, because while I’ve encountered the term before, I’d never even remotely knew someone who identified as agender. I knew a lot of people of other sexualities and one person who was trans, but not agender. Oddly enough when I read this comic your gender doesn’t even occur to me. I’ve been told I can be a bit blind though.
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