[content contains brief description of my experience of femmephobic sexual assault]
Thank you for everybody who has been checking in with me to see how I am doing, speaking up about misogynistic violence in society. I am well because I am not retraumatized: I experienced gendered/racialized violence in which a man called me ‘fabulous’ and physically, non-consensually imposed himself onto me, as an act of femmephobia.
I was sexually assaulted inside a homosocial nightclub. It was an acquaintance “being friendly” with me.
My assailant made objectifying statements that made me feel were linked to femmephobia. I was called ‘fabulous’ and then assaulted.
I had to deal with my fear in his unwanted physical contact. Not having a relationship/friendship with this person at all, it wasn’t like I could feel upset by this and then feel safe enough to privately tell this person the next day when he is sober. No repoire, no established sociality. There will be no verbal or even non-verbal acknowledgement of remorse from him and I could not give him any warning or forgiveness. I was in fear not only because he was physically intimating, but also because I have experienced assault based on explicit sexual racism and femme-hatred from people who “look like him,” or more accurately speaking, who have the same privilege as him (White, ‘masculine’ and muscular) before.
My intention is not to stereotype here and, if you are reading clearly, you would know I haven’t done so. I just want to qualify my feelings of fear here: I know my dancing has violated certain commercial gay social norms and the consequences that some violent people think I should pay are informed by what my body signals in this gay culture. If my assailant had been lesser in size, I may feel a similar fear because of my understanding of how I am ‘bodied’ and how the assailant, though smaller, still holds cultural privilege for how he is differently ‘bodied.’
Anyway, we need to address rape culture as part of our culture of violence and non-consent. We need to talk about violence intersectionally, in this postcolonial society. For most of those checking in with me, I know that the issues I bring up may potentially be more draining for you because the gendered violence I take on as an ally affects you more directly, considering I may signal as femme to some but I know I always have male privilege. You will notice that I speak a bit less frequently of non-Indigenous racism, particularly covert racism against ‘East Asians’ in areas of employment and desire/dating, because I need to more self-care to speak on those issues across communities in public. I have ethno-stress in many homosocial spaces, in some feminist spaces and in the everyday mainstream. I need allyship in these areas. Thank you.