Non-binary not cross dressing

Non-binary not cross dressing

hello friend

Hello. My name is Pete Carr. I am a writer and photographer identifying as non-binary and diagnosed as autistic. I likely have ADHD too.

This weekly newsletter looks at non-binary autistic life discussing topics of mental health, acceptance, and identity. I rarely have answers but often have thoughts. Being open this way helps us to connect and better understand each other. 🖖

If you would like to send feedback simply reply to this email and I’ll get it.

hello camera

This week’s photos are from the a wander along Aberdyfi beach as the tide goes out and the wind howls.

You can get prints of the photos in this weeks newsletter on my print store or you can tip me on Ko-Fi so I can buy film for my camera.

Non-binary not cross dressing

If you thought trying to make people understand autism was hard try wearing clothes from a department that isn’t your assigned gender at birth. I feel like most people see me in a skirt and they see a man wearing women’s clothes. “How odd.” That’s not me though. I’m not a man wearing women’s clothes. I’m a non-binary person wearing my clothes. Remove the clothes and I’m still non-binary, only naked and a little cold.

I was chatting with someone recently and I got the impression they saw me this way. “So when are you going to go full Greyson Perry?” I should have asked what they meant by that but it was a light hearted chat and I didn’t want to be too confrontational. So I don’t know if they meant go full on flamboyant outfits or alter-ego cross dressing. While I’m interested in pushing myself clothes wise Greyson’s style isn’t mine. I prefer colour punk goth styles in whatever form catches my eye. I am not looking to create an alter-ego or engage in cross dressing.

Why is this important? I’m passionate about challenging the gender binary and messing with the idea of “normal”. Society changes its ideas on a whim and yet people are so protective of these transient ideas. A couple of hundred years ago boys wore pink and girls were blue. Today it’s reversed and tomorrow it won’t matter. I dislike systems of control.

Did you know that women’s shirt buttons are on a different side to men’s? They are and all because women had servants to dress them so they needed to be easy to button up. They’re still this way today. It’s stupid. I bought a shirt dress and the buttons are on the other side to my other shirts. Why are we still doing these things? Oh and don’t get me started on pockets. Systems of control. Go to hell.

Being non-binary, for me, is not just about wearing different clothes. It’s a word that currently describes how I identify. Maybe the language will change as I get older. Maybe it will become more defined and nuanced or maybe I will come to understand new things about my identity.

I don’t think I ever understood what it was to be a man and I’m happy to box all those ideas up and pop them in the recycling. I’m happy with my gender identity being based on my lived experience rather than my assigned gender at birth. Clothes are an expression of this but they are not all there is to it. I’m not cross dressing. I’m non-binary. He/they with emphasis on the they. Possibly even just they/them. It’s… complicated.

Non-binary person sat on rocks wearing yellow tights, black skirt, black denim jacket, black t-shirt with a lighthouse behind them.

Close up of sand dunes on the beach.

hello world

The wind is blowing sand along the beach on a cloudy day. There are buildings on the horizon and a mountain behind.

helloooo nurse

Toxic positivity is bad. Yay for sarcasm.

I am allowed to say no to others and yes to myself. “Yes they are all my doughnuts. No you can’t have one.”

Break waves crashing onto the beach as the tide goes out on a mostly overcast day.

Weekly email features Captains Log, fascinating links and more photos