S.O.G.I.E

SOGIE, an abbreviation combining sexual orientation, gender identity, and gender expression, has become one of the biggest reference term to describe and explain the LGBT (or lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender) community.

Sam Killermann, an artist, author, and activist, introduced the Genderbread person as a way to teach SOGIE. The Genderbread person is a visual guide to explain the 4 components of gender: Sex, Identity, Expression, and Attraction. 

According to Killerman, SOGIE is not a one-size-fits-all, as it is constantly evolving and the nuances are influenced by upbringing, culture, social norms, and life choices. It is not a label but simply a guide that shapes a person and what that person can be.

Personally I know i am still making sense of my own SOGIE. I remember the first time I learnt I was into women πŸ˜‚πŸ˜‚ my cousins and I were watching a TV show and two women kissed and I remember feeling these knots tie up in my stomach. I was 7 years old and I wondered if I felt that way because I was a kid watching rated image or it meant something bigger. It went on for years still remembering that very scene. At 11, my cousin asked if I knew how to kiss and mocked me as I had mentioned on the first edition… we kissed that 1 time and it became something that happend a lot. We both didnt know what we were doing but it felt soooo good. Speaking of which, a friend of mine recently discussed how much a lot queer folk had their first time experiences with family members.


Anyway, this one time my grandmother caught us kissing and man did we get a beating. At this time I was like 14 and she was 16. It was hard to explain what we had but it felt so good yet so wrong. Making it worse, I had moved to another town where I got into my first actual relationship. I remember I got into a fight this one time because one of the girls at the school I was going at was telling people that I was a lesbian and God knows how much I hated the word. Most of the research I had made surrounding this word made me hate me for who I thought I was..I read articles about rapes,murders,suicides, families breaking up I knew I didnt want that for myself. The world leabian made me feel dirty and I hated admitting that I was one…the person i was with also hated labels so it had been easier for us until people outed us.

My mother was called to school and the entire issue was blown out of proportion and almost had me suspended. I can still recall the looks on their faces when they marked me with the word lesbian and to this day I still hate the fact that the meeting took place. Because it was from that meeting that I then became a target for all things bad.

When I finished my form 5,I came back to the capital city and by this time I was unapologetically lesbian and had made it a mission to learn as much as I could about being the person that i was. Around the same time, I officially came out to my family and someone had told me to tell them to take it or leave it when it comes to me. Unfortunately they chose to leave it and I was chased from home but now when I look back to all that drama I am grateful for the person I have become.

I got myself close to an LGBT+ organization and went all crazy with my learning on the subject in question. That was the first time I got introduced to the term SOGIE and I remember at some point when all this was explain I broke down into tears as so many things made so much sense for the first time.

My sexual orientation from the onset has always been GAY because I felt the world was a holistic explanation of Queer. On that day I learnt that all the gender and body dysphoria I had been struggling with was because I am was not cisgendered. I learnt the word gender non-conforming and I concluded it’s what explained me better because also my expression was in alignment with it.

Funny thing though was that I also learnt that gender isnt a close ended conversation one has with themselves. The more i sat down with Bubbly, the more I learnt what it was Bubbly wanted. 2017 I concluded that I wanted to undergo hormonal therapy after a lot of psychosocial therapy and many conversations with myself. I remember people thinking and believing that I was turning into a trans man and I had to often explain that the E in SOGIE meant expression.i wanted to Express myself the way i felt and perceived myself and I felt HRT was the way.

I was on testosterone for 4 months and the family got all dramatic about itπŸ™„πŸ™„and forced me to stop. My brother and I argued so much about it, and I tried to do it all behind his back. He found out and got mat at me, then he passed away still mad at me a couple of days later. I felt so guilty that I stopped and it’s been so heavy on my mental health hence I’ve learnt to make peace with him being gone and choose to restart it.

There is so much surrounding SOGIE I just wish people took the time to unpack it all and make sense of it because often times other people tend to impose their own beliefs on those less knowledgeable.

After all these introductions I will be talking about my day to day life and for sure this topic shall be revisited.

A big shout out to http://www.itspronouncedmetrosexual.com for the beautiful gingerbread man image.

Xoxo Bubbly ♀

NOT A SUICIDE NOTE

If you are reading this
It’s either I want to die
But I cant coz I am afraid of those I’ll leave behind
Or I am dead
I doubt the latter though
For I havent it in me
To end it

They told me that time makes it all better
That eventually I’ll become numb
That it will hurt less
But how then do I keep falling back
And back

This hole I’ve dug myself
Keeps widening
And the voices from inside it
Keep telling me that it’s ok
To let go
To finally be free

I constantly need to remind myself
That I need to breathe
That I need to stay away
Long enough
To leave and not leave scars
To go and not leave wounds
But the process is prolonged

I cant
I dont want this
This life
These clothes
This place
This body
I don’t want it all
But who then do I tell
When each time I try to scream
I’m forced to pop pills to numb it all
But numbing doesn’t erase
It’s a temporary pain relief solution

If I died on the other hand
It would be a permanent pain relief solution
But I cant die
This vow of immortality I swore
Just so I wont break hearts
Is breaking my own
I’m in shreds
And nobody seems to notice

This is not a suicide note
I’m merely putting my thoughts on paper
To remind myself that I long died
This vessel I call a body is getting exhausted from carrying my corpse
But I just have to hold on
Not for me
It’s never for me

=Bubbly k♀

MY MENTAL HEALTH

It’s me again,I did promise to come back and talk about all the other crazy things Bubbly. So here I am. But before I go on,I need it to be known that I write these to help the next person who may be going through what I went through know that they are not alone. I do not in anyway want anyone to feel sorry for me because I am genuinely learning how to do all of this myself. Now,moving on.

DEPRESSION

The first time I walked into a psychologist room was at 14 after the rape. Disclaimer: I am afraid to get into details about the rape because I cannot talk about it and not dream about it. It’s a tedious and annoying thing really. Anyway, my concentration had declined and school was getting affected. Trust me,everyone who knows Bubbly knows that whichever space they inhibit, its very much noticeable. At this time,I was a loner and wanted nothing to do with anyone because as fucked up as it is;I saw the perpetrator on a daily basis and it tore my entire being apart.

I dont even remember how or why I thought of cutting coz much as I try to remember, I dont think I had any knowledge of what self-harm was/is but that was the first time I slit my wrists. I can still remember how I felt at that exact moment. My throat was tight, I couldn’t breathe and I started punching walls and breaking things. The pain I felt inside of me was overwhelming me and al I knew was I wanted out. One of the things I had been breaking proved to be sharp so I pretty much blacked out after I held it in my hand. I recall I could breathe, looking at that blood drip it felt as if the pain left and oozed out with it. That momentary relief was what I needed.

However,the emotional abuse from home didnt make it any better so it drove me off the edge. I over dozed and found myself at the hospital. That’s when they told me I may be suffering from depression and they all wanted to find my triggers and what could be why we were in that position. I wailed because I didnt know how or where to start. How on earth was I supposed to tell a stranger that my mothers boyfriend who taught at my school raped me and he is still walking?

ANXIETY

For the longest i tried to make sense of my life and it was all just surreal. All my responses were forever in defense mode and this brought in the anxiety because sweetheart, the trust issues I had for this world kept increasing. To this day I dont even trust myself because yes,forgiving myself seems to be a futile process.

BIPOLAR

I kept trying to tell myself that I am not at myself to have been diagnosed with bipolar because they honestly drove me off the edge. So when the doctor told me about my anger problems and how they making me all bipolar’ish,I smiled and said to him “I heard bipolar people have the strength of 7 men, atleast now I can always fight him off if he tried to do it again”. I hysterically laughed after saying that coz I wanted,no I needed my sick humor to come to my rescue but look at me now.

PERSONALITY DISORDER

This one is a new one.Learnt about it late last year when I got booked into a psychiatric hospital because yes breathing gets harder on most days than others. I think I should make a quick note that I cant help but feel like this one is a misdiagnosis because it came just after I told my psychologist that I want a gender reassignment everything. He said, “perhaps you want to change this body because so much has happened to it” and honestly that statement carried so much even if I didn’t want to admit it. (Gender talks in the next post,I promise).

BATTLING MY MENTAL HEALTH PROBLEMS

Sometimes I feel like maybe I whine too much that’s why I choose to keep quiet.i would be there,in the middle of the night crying my eyeballs out and I wouldnt even know why I would be crying. But i cry, A LOT. Until there isnt enough water in my body to let the tears flow. It sucks honestly, fighting this battle i cant seem to win because Some days are normal and some are excruciatingly painful and all I can do is stay in bed all day. Do nothing. stare into the abyss and think and think and think coz I cant sleep.day or night, i cannot fathom the strength to sleep.so instead I think,think myself into a much deeper hole and have no choice but sit in it coz nobody knows shit that goes on in my mind. There have been weeks I stayed without food.id know I am kinda hungry but day it day out I didnt have the strength to lift my head from my pillow and allow food into my system.when those who see try force me to eat,I end of vomiting.these weeks where I dont eat,or get out of bed.i havent in me the strength to even do a small thing like bathing. I know people may think I’m being pathetic but had anyone ever have their body disobey them like mine disobeys me?I swear I’d know I probably stink,my nails in dirt from all the hair I pluck out my sculp,my teeth probably yellow coz I just stay in bed,cry,scream have conversations with myself.i just stay there.numb. doctors recommended pills and sometimes they work,while sometimes they dont.like recently…I woke up feeling so low I took my everyday dose,I waited,and waited,and waited.until I took another dose because I couldn’t stop thinking about how much I didn’t want to exist, I couldn’t get this hurt out of my system,I couldn’t breathe.i just sat there.and cried.for things that made sense and those that didnt,I cried and I called out to the world to be a bit lenient on me. Battling mental health illnesses is an exhausting thing,I just hope someday I will finally master my own mind to control it instead of the other way around.

“Breathe, you’re not drowning”

QUEER QUOTES

Introduction
My names are Kutlwano Pleasure Selaledi but I never even know these names because everyone calls me Bubbly. Grew up in the outskirts of Gaborone in a village called Gabane but also a very rural area called Marapong in the North West part of Botswana.

BECOMING ME
The first time I learnt about who Bubbly was/is was at the age of 7. Yeah,the first time i saw women kissing and as a kid that age i remember hiding behind a pillow because,my that was the most awkward but adrenalizing moment of my life. My cousins and I spoke about it and as we called it, “dilo tse dimaswe” done by women was the worst. I kept mum for the longest as I heard my cousins ridicule those women and somehow I felt an ache in my heart. It felt as if they were attacking me personally but at 7 I knew nothing.

GROWING UP
I knew I was different from all of my cousins and I just didnt know how to explain it. My other cousin at 10 asked me if I knew how to kiss;and I said i knew because these girl was well versed in that department. She mocked me and I was adamant in proving to her that I know how to kiss. My perky ten years old lips reached for hers and like riding a bicycle our lips danced. The butterflies I felt in my tummy dont even come close to explaining what I felt but I had to lie and said it was just a basic kiss. For the next 3 years, my cousin and I would occasionally rendezvous and Lord knows we moved from just kissing to you know what and at some point my grandmother almost caught us.

By the age of 13 I had discovered the word lesbian and I wanted nothing to do with it because the little research I did proved to me that homosexuality was a sin and all the consequences that came with claiming the label were frightening. I know, there were positive sides but my mind wouldnt let me look at that.

At some point I almost got suspended for “dating” because the sexuality crises had me convinced that dating a boy would somewhat make me straight. At 14 i was unfortunately raped but this is not the time for the story (there will be an entire chapter on it,trust me) and apparently that was an act of correction by someone who has heard I may be playing for the same team.. So that lead to PTSD,anxiety and other mental health illnesses (story for another day).

Honestly we need more than one post to get to know me so tune in and we unravel the story of me. Hope you enjoy it because I am also still writing it and trying to understand it all.

Xoxo Bubbly

HELLO WORLD

Hello world. i honestly do not know what i am doing but i know i had to start one of these. There are so many things to talk about and i just thought, “hey, what a better way than to start a blog?” So here i am. nervous as fuck that i am literally about to regularly pour my heart and soul for the entire world to see. But i guess its worth it at the end of the day coz who knows, i might just help somebody out there. a lot is going on in my life right now but i hope i can finally catch you guys up.

Lets do this.

Love, Bubbly