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Posted: Briana Shewan. Positionality makes a big difference in femme identity: Please note I am a cisgender, white, thin, millenial femme from an upper-middle class background formally trained as a psychotherapist. Have you been circling around femme identity for a while without knowing if it fits?
Are you unsure if you get to call yourself femme? Femme is a beautiful, complex identity. What it looks like, means, and encompasses is different for each of us. In fact, quite the opposite is true. Femme is all about stepping outside of traditional femininity. Rather, this article is intended to broadly clarify femme identity by exploring its common themes.
May you be a baby femme in the making! Not all queer-identified femmes agree on this, but many, including myself, strongly feel that femme is a queer identity. Therefore, to be straight and call yourself femme is appropriative.
This is because to do so erases the history of femmes in queer liberation movements and its political identity as it relates to heteronormativityand perpetuates femme invisibility for those who are queer identified Barrett-Ibarria, To identify as femme while straight dismisses its historical, political, and cultural ificance.
Self-identified femmes and feminine-presenting queer women are all feminized people and, as such, experience being devalued in our patriarchal society Buchanan, That being said, not every feminine-presenting queer woman identifies as femme.
The term femme can be used loosely without understanding how someone self-identifies. There is value in both someone claiming femme identity, and not claiming it. Femmes may have any gender identity; some consider femme their gender identity, whileother femmes may have a different gender identity such as transwoman, nonbinary, cis-woman, genderfluid, agender, etc. Additionally, there are femmebois, tomboy femmes, femme daddys, femme dykes, etc. Other femmes reject these categorizations altogether. Many femmes consider their identity to be an intentional expression of their femininity as opposed to one that adheres to typical constraints of feminine performance.
Rather, femmes creatively and uniquely celebrate the parts of themselves that would otherwise be suppressed, denied, or defined for them. It often challenges larger notions that equate femininity to vulnerability and vulnerability to weakness.
Today femme is proudly an identity that is not defined in relation to anything else. Femme pushes back on misogynistic ideas that feminized people are defined through a patriarchal lens or male gaze. Femme is glorious all on its own. For many femmes, their identity encompasses more than their sexuality and gender. It is the entirety of their queerness existing in a capitalist, white supremacist society. Leah Lakshmi Piepzna-Samarasinha said:. My cane, sexy non-stiletto boots and bed life are femme now because of the labor of disability justice comrades.
One femme may be a kinky monogamous top who only dates other femmes; another may be pansexual and polyamorous. One femme may feel strongly about shaving, while another may feel strongly against it. One femme may refuse to leave the house without makeup and hair in perfect order, another may be ambivalent about glitter gasp!
As Laura Lune P. Barrett-Ibarria, S. Brabaw, K. Buchanan, B. Women and Femmes Unite!
Chung, C. Crenshaw, Kimberle. Donish, C. Femmes of Color Sound Off. Tonic, G. Urquhart, E. What Does Femme Mean Today?
I am a femme therapist and I love working long-term, relationally, and one-on-one within my queer community! Out On The Couch. Are you Femme?
Every Feminine-Presenting Queer Woman Self-identified femmes and feminine-presenting queer women are all feminized people and, as such, experience being devalued in our patriarchal society Buchanan, Queer Yes it is! An Intentional Relationship to Your Femininity Many femmes consider their identity to be an intentional expression of their femininity as opposed to one that adheres to typical constraints of feminine performance.
Its Own Identity Today femme is proudly an identity that is not defined in relation to anything else.
References Barrett-Ibarria, S. About The Author. Briana Shewan.Im not a fem but im looking for a
email: [email protected] - phone:(889) 251-5331 x 6016
Out On The Couch