Sexuality and gender identification have taken a forefront in the media stronger than ever in 2015. A formerly private struggle, one that has made people question the core of who they are, has been sort of a publicity frenzy this year. From heart-wrenching stories of a young woman killing herself because she didn’t feel like she fit in (born in a physically male body), to gay marriage, ALL marriage being legal in the US, to Caitlyn Jenner. It’s hard to miss the headlines talking about how our culture is changing or should be, but with headlines, come the labels.
Straight. Bisexual. Gay. Asexual.
She. He. Her. Him. They.
With the youth of today turning more towards young celebs/musicians to help gather the strength to tell our own stories, it’s important when someone can be brave enough to fight the stereotypes and challenge gender and sexuality “norms”.
Kristen Stewart was best known for her role in Twilight and her very public romance with Robert Pattinson. The romance ended but the rumors didn’t, they were speculated to be dating into 2014. When Kristen was first photographed with a woman in 2015, she was dubbed her ‘gal pal’.
The first photos of Kristen and Alicia together showed the two holding hands, and while females do hold the hands of their friends, had she been photographed holding hands with a male, we dare say the headlines would have read differently.
2015 went on and we saw more of Kristen and Alicia together, but media outlets still didn’t get it, she was still Kristen’s close friend, gal pal, anything but girlfriend, no matter how romantic or intimate the photos looked.
It’s easy to see, through the progression of their relationship and the denial of the media, how generally wrong we can still be about a person’s sexuality, but in the grand scheme of things, why is that what should define a person anyway?
Sexuality, to me, is grey. We think you see relationships from a young age, you see what they look like, how adults interact, and you follow that pattern. Hormones kick in, you notice the opposite or the same sex and you realize then that you either fit into that picture you saw growing up, or you don’t. It should truly be that simple, but it’s not.
Every day we are bombarded with the need to define ourselves, to define who we are, what we like, who we like, and why. We are thrown into situations in our personal lives where we are ridiculed for being different, ostracized for loving “the same”, and made to feel inadequate if we don’t fit the stereotype.
We say to heck with the stereotypes.
If you love someone, if you truly find the person you’re meant to spend forever with, who cares what body their soul resides in. We could walk out my front door tomorrow and meet a girl in Barnes and Noble and fall in love, we could walk out my front door tomorrow, meet a man at Target and fall in love. Any of us could. We don’t see why the sex of who we fall in love with has such a weight on society’s perception of us. We don’t see why the gender of who you hold hands with is more important than the heart of that person and the way they treat you.
This is why celebs like Kristen Stewart and Harry Styles are so important, this is why so many young adults look up to them, respect them, and set them as our idols. They dare say that the sex of who we love isn’t important, that we don’t have to fit into this box and define ourselves. They dress the way they want, they act the way they want, and when people try to label them; they challenge it.
Kristen is on the cover of Nylon Magazine this month and her article inside is one we plan on cutting out and saving.
This is what she has to say on why she isn’t “coming out”.
“Google me, I’m not hiding. If you feel like you really want to define yourself, and you have the ability to articulate those parameters and that in itself defines you, then do it. But I am an actress, man. I live in the fucking ambiguity of this life and I love it. I don’t feel like it would be true for me to be like, ‘I’m coming out!’ No, I do a job. Until I decide that I’m starting a foundation or that I have some perspective or opinion that other people should be receiving…I don’t. I’m just a kid making movies.”
We applaud you, Kristen, for saying something we wish had been said long ago, something that has been said but not this publicly, not with such a large audience watching. Thank you for fighting back against the need for labels, thank you for talking bout how ambiguity is a wonderful space to exist in, and thank you for doing so in such an honest way.