I tweeted a little about this the other day (@eviontheinside if you’re interested), but I thought it was worth writing out.

I’m usually slow to make friends. I don’t do small talk, and I can be quite shy until I know someone. Then I warm up. I’ve been fortunate to have someone in my new office who has introduced me to a lot of people, something that has eased my transition to this new home well.

There were six of us who went out Friday night. We went to one of the two bars in the area I’ll go to (the rest have seemed a bit rough for my tastes), and we got there right after work. Many drinks went by, and eventually someone asked me just the right question to get me talking about my gender identity.

I was more candid than I would be completely sober, and it took some explaining, too. No, I don’t want to transition and I’m satisfied with my biology. It’s my expression I’m trying to take to this middle ground to even a slightly feminine place. No, I’m not sexually interested in men. No, I’m not bi. No, my gender and expression and identity do not change these facts.

After the initial parts of the inquisition, things got a bit more relaxed. At least two of the women of the group are bi, and one commented that I was basically every bi girl’s dream. That at least made me feel good.

Eventually most people filtered out. I stayed with one of the women in our group, wanting to make sure she got home alright. Plus, she’s pretty cool and I enjoy talking with her. We went through a bit more info, as she seemingly wanted to just know more about all of this.

This is kind of big for me because this is still not in town in which I feel safe. I do keep my gender expression in check because of it. I haven’t painted my fingernails since I’ve gotten here (which annoys me), and the overall macho feel of the area doesn’t make me worried about words and taunts. Rather, I’m more worried of getting the crap kicked out of me because reasons. It’s a conservative place, and 20-something men tend to be the defenders of social norms. There are many here. And they’re well paid.

A good thing I’m making friends who kind of get it, then.