Queer

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Queer Flag

Identifying as queer means different things to different people. Below are some members of Warwick Pride explaining what it means to them.

Please note that for some ‘queer’ is still a derogatory term. Please make sure that you only use it if someone personally identifies as queer.

Lily

I identify as a lesbian woman and as a queer woman. Whilst some LGBTUA+ people use the term queer because they are attracted to more than one gender, I identify as queer for other reasons. I like how ‘queer’ can be used by anyone in the LGBT+ community regardless of their sexual orientation or gender identity. The term allows for a fluidity of sexual orientation and gender identity/presentation. I like the sense of community and connection it provides as an umbrella term. I also feel that ‘queer’ is a more political term because it is a reclaimed slur that reminds us of why LGBTUA+ spaces need to exist. From my own experience ‘queer culture’ rejects elements of racism, sexism and heteronormativity found in mainstream gay and lesbian culture.

Sam

For me, identifying as queer offers a lot more flexibility than other labels. I don’t have to specify to people how I’m “not straight”, because frankly most of the time that’s no one’s business but mine. It also has a social and political context which is important to me. Depending on the context I might also use other labels to define my orientation, and identifying as queer is great because it’s still compatible with those labels.

Alice

I personally ID as queer. I prefer it over other labels. Personally I’d define it broadly as feeling attraction to individuals, regardless of their sexuality or gender identity. I use it because I feel my own sexuality is very complex and has many contributing factors. I feel it also for many people has a political context; that they are aware and active campaigners for lgbt+ rights. I guess ‘queer culture’ also differs a bit from traditional ‘gay culture’ and ‘lesbian culture’ but that’s just in my experience.

Amy

I personally like the non-specific nature of ‘queer’ and that it means different things to different people. As someone who prefers not to label orientation and gender, I find ‘queer’ is a good way to ID as LGBTUA+ without really boxing in what I am. To me, it’s very fluid, which I dig. Where I come from, ‘queer’ is very much still used in a hostile way, mostly against gay men but also to refer to anyone who isn’t a cookie-cutter cishet. I completely respect anyone’s right to not identify or use the word queer, and its annoying that I sometimes still use the word as a sort of synonym for ‘LGBTUA+’ ’cause I see how that would be annoying if you didn’t like the word. ‘Queer’ has a lotta history behind it, but I don’t really tend to identify with it in the political sense. ‘Queer culture’ for me, is just a comfortable place to hide from LGBTUA+-phobia.