What not to ask?

I know for some of you there are many things you are curious about. If you know me at all you know I am very much a questioner, that isn’t changing, so I understand people being curious. On the other hand, we all need to balance curiosity with being polite and respectful.

There is a scene in one of my favorite movies (Jenny’s Wedding) that portrays this issue very well. The movie is about a young lady coming out to her conservative parents as a lesbian and getting married.

In this scene, the father who is currently having a lot of difficulty accepting his daughter infers that he wants to know how they make love. He can not fathom how lesbian sex works and that seems to frustrate him. Her response is ‘We are kind of old fashion and don’t like to talk about those kinds of things in public’ (not an exact quote).

To me, it is an amazing scene because I see both sides. The father’s confusion and desire to understand, and the daughter’s total disgust at the question. But it is a very realistic scene. For some reason, many people seem to think it is just fine to ask an LGBTQ+ person something they would never dream of asking a non-LGBTQ+ person.

But I think the reality of it isn’t that people want to know intimate personal details about an LGBTQ+ person’s life. I think most of them just want to understand a world that is quite alien and confusing to them. And for some reason, this desire to understand overshadows their common sense sometimes.

You should never ask a transgender person…

  • What kind of surgery are you going to have?
  • Are you getting your genitals changed?
  • Does this mean you’re gay?
  • and many more.

But you can ask…

  • What kind of surgeries might a transgender person have?
  • Are transgender people gay?
  • and many more.

I hope you see the difference. I am hoping to add a links page that will have answers to questions like this. Of course, you could Google any of these questions if you are really curious.

The bottom line is,
if you wouldn’t ask a given question of a non-LGBTQ+ person
it isn’t proper to ask such a question of anyone.

Next Question: What does J616 mean?