10:58 am - 04/21/2014

MMMMonday! Personal assumptions.

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Today, in the spirit of (and inspired by) Shakesville's questions of the day: What are some erroneous assumptions people make about you? Why do you think the assumptions are made? Do they bother you? Are those assumptions ever an asset? We'd just like to get some discussion going in comments, so if you're moved to, hop on in!
joshuaorrizonte 21st-Apr-2014 11:36 pm (UTC)
1. That I identify female. Not much to be done about that, as I present very strongly as female even when I'm actively trying not to (I'm FtM trans), but it bugs the shit out of me. There is nothing wrong with being a woman, but that is when you actually are one. Part of the reason I enjoy online interactions so much is that people cannot see the shape of my body - I can present and be read as male, and relatively few people will question it (or tell me to "keep it in the bedroom" which is so much absurd that I don't even know where to begin...)

2. That I'm a teenager because of my acne. Yes I'm aware that my acne is something that people usually grow out of by their mid-twenties. I'm reaching my mid-thirties and I still haven't grown out of it. It's safe to say that I won't, and you can stop commenting on it now.

3. That I'm immature because my secondary hobby is video games. My writing is soundly ignored by these same people who assume that I've got the mind of a ten-year-old (although this works out to my benefit sometimes... for example, the bar at work is set to "idiot" for me by my supervisor, which is massively insulting since I work circles around her - and I'm not exaggerating - but it also means that she's almost constantly "impressed" and when I'm having a Bad Chronic Illness day, I can slow down and I won't be grilled about why).

4. Conversely, and very oddly, that because I show a high level of competence at work, it means that I'm "good at" (insert basic subject here). Example: Math. I work with a lot of numbers and I do it well but don't ask me to do anything mathematical with them without a calculator if I can't count on my fingers. I will trip all over myself if I try. (Also, I'm still trying to "train" my husband not to ask me how to spell words out loud. I cannot do it. I haven't had to use spellcheck once in this comment but if you were to ask me to spell, say "Conversely" out loud, my response would be "No". He's not the only one who does this and I'm starting to wonder if it's just me who has good language skills but can't spell verbally for shit...?)

5. That I'm faking my chronic illnesses and/or can feel better if I just eat better/exercise more/change my perspective. This particular assumption made by people is particularly hurtful and an absolute minefield to try to navigate, so unless anyone wants an explanation about this one, I'll refrain. Suffice it to say that it never works out to my benefit.

Wow, this got rambly. :(
okamikaze 22nd-Apr-2014 12:52 am (UTC)
OT but I've received a perfect or near-perfect score on all standard tests I've ever taken and never use spellcheck, but can't spell for shit out loud. I've always thought it was due to the fact that English isn't my first language, and that in my native language there's no such thing as spelling something out loud. Lol

Edited because I fail on my phone.

Edited at 2014-04-22 12:52 am (UTC)
nightengalesknd 22nd-Apr-2014 12:59 am (UTC)
I have quite strong verbal skills and can't spell, verbally or otherwise.

I used to get angry at people who said "people who read a lot are good spellers. I felt as though the comment implied that my poor spelling was a criticism of my not reading enough, and I wasn't sure how I was supposed to read more - I already read in the car, at the dinner table, in bed and under my desk at school. . .

In my case, I think it's related to my strong verbal skills and weak visual-processing skills. When I read, I hear the words said aloud in my head. I look at them - I mean, I KNOW I have to look at the words to read them - but I don't really notice the letters as individual units, or even words as individual units. To learn to spell a word, I have to make a concerted effort to verbalize the letters in order or memorize a reason why they are in that order.
lanalucy 22nd-Apr-2014 01:42 am (UTC)
I'm sorry you struggle with the first one. It's a tough thing, not to be accepted for what you are. You already know that.

#5. Yes. "It's all in your head." Of course it is, you prat. Thank you for your condescension and dismissal of my daily struggle.

Aimed at other people, not at you you, which hopefully you understood.

The spelling thing - my mother and I talked about this several times, and the reason we spell well, either in written or verbal communication, is because the words are pictures in our heads. When asked to spell, I access the file, so to speak, and get an actual flash of the word. I am a visual person, with both words and numbers. Other people don't have these, I don't know, Rolodex-type files in their heads? There are a few exceptions, but I can pretty much spell anything I've seen at least once, though I have to close my eyes sometimes to see the picture. The human brain is weird.
nightchild01 22nd-Apr-2014 04:11 am (UTC)
I get you on issue one. I'm short, hourglass shaped, FAAB, and have long hair (though I still got read as feminine when I had a "boy cut" so eh). Wearing masculine clothes doesn't help. Not sure if binding my chest would, either. It's so frustrating.
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