For as long as I can remember, I have been much more masculine than feminine. However the vast majority of my friends (and all of my close friends) are fairly feminine women. Of course I have no issue with this, but occasionally this can present issues and complications that were unforeseen to me prior to coming out. There are three main issues; misgendering, dysphoria and a lack of male friends.
Firstly, I tend to get misgendered much more often when I am with them.
I thought that the opposite would happen. I assumed that their femininity would create a contrast against my masculinity, thus amplifying my manliness. This did not happen. Evidently, people match my femininity to theirs and group us together as one unit. This also occurs when I’m with my girlfriend. I guess people see a minimum and fill in the blanks themselves, and so assume we’re a lesbian couple. There have been times where this has caused issues. Not only does this make my girlfriend uncomfortable, it makes me uncomfortable as well when I’m with her, or my friends.
I can feel more dysphoric when I’m with them
I came out fairly recently and so the people in my life are still getting used to pronouns and some are even still struggling with my name. And that is more than okay, I knew it would take time. But sometimes when the people you love the most can’t get it right, it hurts a lot more than it normally would. I really am thankful that they are all trying their best, I just wish it would take less time.
When I’m with them, both my actions and theirs result in dysphoric feelings. I see physical similarities between us and I know they treat me differently to cis-men. They share stories with me that I know they wouldn’t share with me if I were cis. And occasionally they still treat me as their ‘lesbian friend’ and so some jokes that are made are inappropriate to say the least.
I don’t have many, if any, close male friends
Masculine figures that are my own age have been rare in my life. I have older brothers and I have had a few male friends throughout my life, but always more female friends for some reason. I feel that I missed out on a ‘boy’s childhood’ and so now that I’m older, I don’t have the typical interests that men my age do, such as sports, cars and/or video games. Which isn’t necessarily a bad thing, but when all the men in my life are talking about the latest football match or the coolest cars I feel alienated and like I don’t belong with them.
All that said and done, I do genuinely love all my friends, and my girlfriend, and all the women in my life. Without them, I would not be here today and I certainly would not be who I am. Their support means the world to me. I hope that one day I find my place in the world within the category of male, but I still get to keep all my friends <3