Thursday, June 25, 2015

Annette/Ravi: Feeling Invisible

Before getting into my week, can I just say that Jordan's version of last Sunday's activity was a bit exaggerated? Not to the point where he's lying or anything, but I kind of suspect that whatever issues he has with this Tina girl going back to high school are coloring his recollection. I also think that he decided that if he was going to wind up in some sort of girls-competing-over-a-man thing, it was going to be so big that he couldn't help but be drawn into it.

Still, I have been encouraging him to enjoy the whole "being a girl" thing while he can. I've missed it, for sure, especially since being a guy is so much the default in our world that I seldom feel like I'm doing anything special.  Fun clothes/hair/perfumes are fun, after all, and it seems easier to fall into a really reserved rut as a man.   On the other hand,  Lane mentioned that most of the bloggers on this site are guys-turned-girls, but that's kind of natural - one thing I've found is that guys tend to have the life that everyone else is supposed to, and good storytelling is about overcoming challenges.  I suppose there were a few days at Ravi's job when I could have written ''today at work, I had a problem with a co-worker, and when I took it to a manager, he listened to me like I knew what I was talking about and didn't stare at my chest at all!" or ''I was walking down the street and at no point did some skeevy guy/ girl get close enough that I felt the need to cross the street."  But that would be kind of boring.

Some girls might write about that; I've been fortunate enough in my life that I didn't find it that odd; I grew up in a nice place and mostly around good people.  So it's not shocking when people treat me-as-Ravi with some sort of respect. It's just realizing later that it happens ALL THE TIME!  Maybe someday a lady who really gets angry upon realizing this will wind up staying at the Inn and contributing to the blog; I just didn't have that sort of "well, duh" thing in me when I realized it.

Similarly, I did not rush to the laptop upon realizing I could wear light-colored pants without checking the calendar.  You just don't write about not doing something.

That's not the sort of invisibility I was planning to write about; I meant being gay.

Not every gay person is invisible, but I feel like I am as Ravi. Jordan says that I don't have "the voice", and I'll take his word for it. The women I deal with don't seem to have any sixth sense that I'm out of play, and my ability to recognize other gay men and be recognized in return just doesn't seem to be there. Maybe it takes a while (and experience) to develop and my personality is straight-girl enough that I don't give the right signals.  I don't know.  I just know that about 90% of the phone numbers I've been offered at work are those of Indian women (or their daughters), and none have been from guys.

In some ways it's like the feeling of being changed by the Inn all over again - folks look at you and they can't see that there's this big, foundational part of who you are that they just assume fits into some sort of standard set of assumptions, when it really doesn't.  On the other hand, you can just say "I'm gay" and people will often at least accept it. I'm not sure where the eventually feeling like it's normal comes in.

Not that you can assume that. Ravi is starting to really be a pain in the ass, because he thinks all the sex he's having with Gary's ex-girlfriend (or would that technically be an ex-ex-girlfriend, now?) proves he was never gay, and I'm just looking at guys now because I'm still a girl inside. I kind of want that to be true, but I really don't think it works that way - who you're attracted to seems to mostly be biology, although personality gives big bumps in one direction or another.

Not that he's consistent about it. If I point out that Jordan notices guys, even if he chooses not to act on it because he doesn't want being penetrated in his head when he turns back (or because he's Jordan and generally anti-social), that doesn't mean these things apply to Ravi. And if I'm attracted to guys because of really being a girl, why do I get a lot more out of giving than receiving, so to speak? Obviously, that's his inherent masculinity doing what it can to overpower my feminine presence in his body.

It's all confused bullshit, and I feel dumb for respecting it, like I should explain everything to Kareena and then sleep with every moderately attractive man in Manhattan so that he's forced to deal with things when his back here in a month.  I know "outing" is mostly frowned upon - I've read a bit on the subject, and an awful number of people commit suicide when it happens to them, making me wake up in cold sweats about even having posted about it here - but is it right to just let Kareena go on like this thing with Ravi will ever amount to anything happy and fulfilling?

I am treating her kind of terribly right now, after all, canceling things and then heading down to a bar, trying a new micro-brew, and seeing if I can make things spark with a guy. There's this one I've met up with three times in the last week (including the initial acquaintance), and I like him - he seems to know all the local bands, makes great jokes, has been to India and knows a lot more about "my" culture than I do. I'm sort of keeping it friendly for now, because he doesn't deserve delusions of long-term commitment any more than Kareena does, though I kind of also think that maybe if I stretch things out, and present a great guy to Ravi on a silver platter, maybe he'll accept reality and try to make things work.

It's not fair to anyone. I know that. But, damn it, I'm lonely and even though I know that the most practical thing is to just keep a lid on everything until we go back to the Inn, it feels wrong! Everybody has been telling me all my life not to keep what I feel bottled up or denied, and even if it's only temporary, I feel like spending time with this guy, including time in bed, and not having an excuse not to (that anybody would believe) really sacks.

-Annette

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