The Best People To Be The Best Person With

, , , , , | Hopeless | September 10, 2017

My friend of 13 years was getting married. A few months before his wedding I came out as non-binary. I was my friend’s “best person,” and, knowing that weddings are very gendered, I told him and his fiancée that it was okay, I could still act “like a girl” for his events and their big day, and be referred to as such.

They said that it may not be necessary to do that, and they would do what they could so everyone, including me, would be happy and have a good time.

First, my friend asked which party I wanted to attend: the bachelor or bachelorette. He also listed me in the program and referred to me by the gender-neutral “best person” honorific, and his fiancée sent the tuxedo rental place information so they could get me a custom suit.

Finally, I sat down at the wedding dinner and saw that my place card said, “Mx.,” a neutral alternative to “Mr”. or “Ms.”!

I am still not out to everyone, due to family and work concerns, so being recognized in these ways, especially on their day, nearly made me cry.

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  • Morgan Blackthorne

    Awesome work on their part! From one Mx to another.

  • Blake Barrett

    What the h311 is non-binary?

    • Michael Chandra

      Google is your friend.

    • tater thots

      copy-paste that into google, and you’ll get your answer!

      • Blake Barrett

        There’s only 2 genders. Doesn’t matter if one day you feel like being one gender, but on a different day you feel like being another. That’s still binary.

        • tater thots

          and your proof is where? why do people have to be boxed in to the western definition of gender, where plenty of cultures from around the world recognize more?

          • Percy P. Plushie

            @tator thots, what I’m still trying to work out is why anyone should be bothered, let alone actively hostile, about the ways in which other people experience and express gender. People must realize the gender identity of others need not affect them; if no one is getting hurt, leave them alone.

            This debate about the term “binary” is getting somewhat pedantic, but it’s worth noting that there are other terms some people find more descriptive: genderqueer, gender fluid, pangender, and on and on. Maybe saying that one has a “non-dualistic” gender identity would be more technically correct?

            EDIT: To address the OP (because not doing so sort of feels like talking about someone as if they’re not in the room…), what a wonderful experience! Congrats and best of luck in your journey!

          • tater thots

            and im trying to work out what that has anything to do with this. if im acting ‘hostile’ then is Blake some sort of saint? why do i have to sit here & do nothing while some people force their beliefs onto others? why cant they be open minded & not berate people of different identities? i may be cis, but i gotta deal with this sh*t because of my race & religion & sexuality & so much other crap, i will NOT let this kind of negative biases be tolerated any longer. idc if they wanted to be the most proper person in the world, if they refuse to allow for other people to be happy and safe in their own identities, i WILL call them out

          • Percy P. Plushie

            Tator thots, my apologies. I was using “you” rhetorically, not referring to you personally. I probably shouldn’t have done that. My point is actually referring to Blake’s comments. I’m sympathetic to your views; Blake is the one being overly vocal in a negative light about other people’s gender experiences. He was being pedantic about the word “binary”. My intention was to chime in with support for your sentiments, as my other comments hopefully make clear I’m on the non-binary person’s side. On the LGBTI+ scale, I would rate a B. Also, happen to be interested in eclectic paganism with elements of Hindu and Buddhist spirituality. I know from experience feelings of not fitting in or being considered normal.

            Again, I’m sorry for the misunderstanding and that my meaning was not as clear from context as I believed.

            EDIT: … And, just noticed my first comment on this thread was flagged for some bizarre reason by the “moderators”, probably making everything I posted thereafter less understandable. *sigh* All I gave was a quick definition of non-binary, some related terms, and a suggestion to google for more info. Not sure what naughty word (it thinks)I said.

          • K’Zad Bhat

            I’m wondering how many people would have issues with gender if everyone didn’t make a gender issue out of things that really have nothing to do with gender, like clothes and toys. As far as I’ve seen the people who “make things confusing” are pretty confused themselves because they like things not associated with their gender, even though that gender association is entirely artificial.

          • Nerdman51

            Um, proof is between our legs

        • Ry / Bread

          why tho. literally, why? if your answer is genitals – there are intersex people with hundreds of different genital ‘mutations’. if your answer is chromosomes, again, there are dozens of different chromosome combinations, such as xxxx and xxy. if your answer is ‘because thats how it always is’, there are multiple different cultures that have always had non-binary/third genders, like native american two-spirit. did i miss anything? -signed, a very real non binary person

          • Blake Barrett

            Let me ask you this. Are genital mutations or an extra chromosome the standard?

          • Samantha Phastine

            ‘Standard’ is relative.

          • Blake Barrett

            Let me put this another way. It’s a deviation from what is most common.

          • Percy P. Plushie

            Okay, but does that matter? Particularly in this context. People who are gender “non-conforming” or non-heterosexual are likely quite aware of their being different from what is expected and, in some cases, accepted. I just don’t see a reason to further point that out.

          • Ry / Bread

            So??? Technically, what’s ‘most common’ in terms of race is a Chinese person. Judging from your picture, you’re a deviation from this norm. Does that invalidate your race?
            I literally don’t understand your case here. There’s nothing wrong with being different.

          • Blake Barrett

            When two Chinese parents have kids, we kinda expect the kids to be
            Chinese. No surprises there. When two parents have kids, we expect
            them to contribute 1 chromosome each. Anything more than that is an
            anomaly. So yes, when we start talking about people with 3 chromosomes, that’s a rare case and it should not be used as an argument for all trans people.

          • Ry / Bread

            Jeez are you listening to anything I say? Those are examples, because you didn’t seem to understand that sometimes – People. Just. Are. Nonbinary. Stop being wilfully ignorant and transphobic

          • Blake Barrett

            So are you telling me that despite chromosomes and obvious evidence to the contrary sitting right there between their legs, that people identify as the opposite gender anyways?

          • Ry / Bread

            Jesus Christ you really are an idiot. Gender has nothing to do with your genitals and chromosomes, that’s WHY I gave you those examples. Just piss off if you’re gonna be such a dickhead about other people’s lives

          • Percy P. Plushie

            @Ry, Exactly!

            For anyone who may be reading, your expectations are not particularly relevant to how other people choose to live or experience life. There’s plenty we don’t fully understand, especially when it comes to the human brain. The default position here shouldn’t be hostility toward someone else’s earnestly expressed experience.

          • LordViking

            Your sǝx is what you have between your legs and for like 98-99% of humans this is either male or female.
            Gender is a social construct and while for most this translates from male/female to man/woman that is not always the case and has more to do with the way society views masculine and feminine traits and how these are applied to a person. This can lead to someone being born with the male sǝx, but identifying strongly with feminine traits and thus not viewing themselves as a man.

            Or to put it more simple:
            https://uploads.disquscdn.com/images/db81186ddc1c6936808e308a3c7e41ca76c761c4a91c5c2aae6bcadf4a1d5fdd.jpg

          • AshleyTurner

            Hate to burst your bubble, but séx is not what’s between your legs, and by saying so, you are high-key misgendering many trans people and should really reconsider your approach.

          • LordViking

            By using the words of the one I replied to I realize I wasn’t expressing myself as clear as I wanted. It was not my intend to offend or exclude anyone.

            I was saying that séx and gender are not the same thing.
            Most people are born either one séx or the other, this is defined by their biological make-up and it is their assigned séx. We are, as far as I know, not so far yet we can change our very DNA to make this different before or after birth.

            What one later in life identifies as is one’s gender. What one currently has between their legs, naturally or surgically, is not a reflection of one’s preferred gender.

          • AshleyTurner

            Séx and gender are both social constructs, and our biological makeup only affects our Assigned gender.
            For example, a Trans woman’s séx is Female, regardless of what the doctors would have assigned her as, since she is a woman.
            Adding “Biological” before misgendering someone is still misgendering and I’d really appreciate it if you did not, thank you.

          • Serabeth

            I would agree with you that many of the characteristics, mannerisms, likes/dislikes, and other personality traits typically attributed to one gender or the other are largely learned and specific to culture and tradition. That being said, I think in general, it’s better if we as a society teach people that it’s okay for them to have personality traits etc attributed to the opposite gender than what they were born as, and it’s also okay to not feel strongly like one or the other set of characteristics describes you very well.

            But to say they are another gender completely or that they are neither gender seems counterproductive to teaching people to accept themselves as who they are, which would include being okay with acting and feeling more feminine while still acknowledging that they are a male.

            I just feel like all this transgender stuff may be harmful to a person’s self esteem, because they often use surgery and drugs to transform their body into a shape they’d prefer.

            Most people generally would agree it’s not healthy, as an example, for a woman to get multiple surgeries to chase the look she wants: multiple breast augmentations, face lifts, liposuction, tummy tucks, butt implants, lip inserts, Botox, etc. Or as another example, we usually say it is unhealthy for a man to pump himself up with steroids to add muscle mass.

            While we generally also support people’s rights to do with their own bodies as they please, it would be nice if more focus could be spent on therapy to help these individuals feel more positive about themselves and comfortable in the bodies they were born with.

          • Michael Chandra

            Treating transgender people and enby people as mentally ill is disgusting.

          • Celoptra

            so why do some WOMEN end up with both gender’s birth-making parts?

          • AshleyTurner

            Blake, parents contribute 23 chromosomes each.

          • Kali Ravel

            ‘Anamoly’ don’t mean ‘doesn’t exist’. Not many people are called Blake, and yet you’re still here.

            When you ask “what gender are you?” the answer depends on why you’re asking. You might want to know “where should we put the metal sheet for the x-ray?” or “could you be pregnant?” or “do you have a prostate we should check for cancer?”. Or, you might mean “do you want a car or a barbie in your happy meal?”, or “what set of pronouns should I use for you?”. The answers to those questions may or may not be related, but they don’t have to be, and science and medicine really don’t give a damn about the answers to the questions they’re not currently asking. If I’m taking a blood test, I want to know what hormone level to expect to find, so I have a range for ‘normal’. That has nothing to do with what title I should use for that person.

            Why do you keep insisting that someone has to pick one box and then select everything about their gender identity from it, for ever and ever? Even biologically, those anomalies we talked about, like Klinefelter or Turners or hermaphrodism exist, so if chromosomes and genitals can’t always agree why on earth would titles and pronouns also have to match?

        • Kali Ravel

          Science disagrees, but thanks for playing.

        • DannyZebra

          History disagrees with you. Since a large number of other cultures have a history of non-binary identities, why assume that your cultural history is the only one that’s right?

        • Luke Green

          Ya see, Non-Binary/Gender Neutral isn’t a gender. It’s the lack of gender in an individual. If you’re gonna use: “Well, chromosomes and g*nitals”, remember that’s to do with s*x. Hence why they’re called S*x Chromosomes. S*x is different to gender.

        • beacon80

          What you are describing is called “gender fluid.” Nonbinary is when someone does not associate with either gender.

          The insistence on the binary has always confused me. If there are people identify outside that binary, then there must be elements outside that binary. Insisting to a nonbinary that no one can identify as anything beyond male and female is like yelling at a banana that no fruit can be yellow.

          And yes, nonbinary people are an anomaly. So what? Depending on your definitions, everybody in the LGBTQ community is an anomaly. That doesn’t mean they don’t exist.

        • An Oni Mouse

          What’s it matter what other people want to call themselves? What does it cost you to live and let live?

  • HeadlessGhostOfAbrahamLincoln

    Way to make your friends wedding all about you.

    /sarcasm

    Great friends. Keep them around.

  • Eilonwy_has_an_aardvark

    That’s adorable. Your friends “get” that a wedding is a gathering of real people they care about, not a pageant with rigid parts. I hope they enjoy many happy years together, and that you OP enjoy many happy years being yourself in whatever way suits you.

  • Ry / Bread

    This is lovely! I’m nb and use mx too, it’s always so great to see other people being accomodating and wonderful for their friends <3

  • cylon_toast

    From one non-binary to another, that’s awesome! =D

  • Ziaheart

    At first I thought your 13 year old friend was getting married and was concerned. Time for bed.

  • Tyler T

    That reminds me: Sure, there can be as many genders as one can make up, as identity is only loosely tied to the physical form… But why create complications out of that? Language, politics, bureaucracy… Information management is messed up as it is, and needs a serious cleaning.

  • Serabeth

    How do you pronounce mx?

    • Moo

      From what a nb friend told me, they say it like “Mix.”

  • Crystalzoner

    So many people argue about this stuff… I see no point to it. They’re not hurting anyone with how they feel so why shouldn’t they be allowed to identify how they like? Some people need to learn the value of an open mind.

    BTW, I’m glad that your friend and their partner accepted your preference without question OP.

  • That is awesome. I hope they stay in your life for a long time. Everyone needs supportive friends like that.

  • Tatjana Peskir

    some people dont like accountants, some dont like fat women, some dont get why anyone would do any wintersports when its so cold. not GETTING something and not LIKING something is not judging. I find, for my taste, people with gender issues to be flakey. while that is sort of a prejudice, reasonable prejudices where you dont hit people because they are different but simply avoid them because you find them likely uninteresting, is what makes social interaction possible. so when I read this story I roll my eyes, because thats my opinion on this, and what I am trying to say is – its a valid one.