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Transparent’s Jill Soloway has opened up about coming out as non-binary

Meka Beresford May 21, 2017

Writer/producer Jill Soloway speaks onstage during The 2017 MAKERS Conference Day 2 (Photo by Emma McIntyre/Getty Images for AOL)

Writer Jill Soloway has opened up about coming to terms with their non-binary identity.

The Transparent writer and director came out in 2015 as non-binary and queer when they announced their relationship with Eileen Myles.

Since that point, Soloway has been learning about themselves and their gender identity.

Speaking to the Guardian, they revealed that they experience a regeneration of sorts every six months as they are constantly finding their comfort in terms of presentation.

Soloway explained: “I’m changing every day, so every six months I’m like: ‘None of this stuff makes sense anymore.’ I got rid of every even slightly feminine shoe. There’s a feeling of being grown up, and moving through the world and feeling like I’m the subject instead of the object and that doesn’t really work for me if I’m feeling feminine.”

They went on to explain that they now feel “strange” being described with traditionally feminine words and terms.

“When people gender me as female, I feel strange, and if someone is like, ‘You look so pretty’ or ‘beautiful’, I feel offended. It’s like I’m succeeding at something feminine when I’m not trying, and that feels like a strange insult,” they said.

However, learning about their gender identity is much more deep rooted than clothes. Indeed, for Soloway they are also learning about how they are treated when they identify outside of a spectrum that society often pushes.

“There will always be incredibly masculine people and completely feminine people, but that has nothing to do with people’s bodies, whether they have a penis or vagina.

“Besides those two poles there’s also a place in the middle, the non-binariness, the people who don’t register as one or the other. I’m happy to speak on behalf of women and on behalf of feminism. But I notice when people see me as non-binary, I get treated more as a human being,” Soloway said.

The writer added that their identity could be further explained because they identify under the trans-umbrella, meaning that they have moved away from what they were assigned at birth.

“I identify as trans, which means that I am not seeking to synthesise my appearance with the label assigned to me at birth and instead am opting to live in a space where a label other than male or female is used to define me,” they said.

The Emmy winner went on to explain that they had not had to make a big announcement about their gender and sexuality because of the intensity that surrounds it.

“Under the transbrella, there are so many identities. I haven’t made the big ‘I’m trans’ announcement because the politics in the community are so intense.

“It’s more like I had the realisation that the word cis didn’t work for me, so first there was the ‘not-cis’ revelation, which linguistically means the same thing as trans. As I said, most people who play with gender norms like butch women don’t identify as trans so it’s a little wobbly. I think in a year or two, more people will,” they added.

More: gender, Jill Soloway, LGBT, non-binary, Trans, Transgender, Transparent, US

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