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Passing As- Assumptions about people based on their behavior versus stereotypes

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"Passing as" is a term a lot of LGBT community probably has directly or indirectly encountered in our lifetime in various forms. Pride month is a celebration of LGBT community's various triumphs and also reminder of where we were. Passing was and still is for many a concept that resonates for those of us who can "pass as" non-LGBT due to our circumstances.

For definition:

https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/pass as#:~:text=1 %3A to cause people to,that once passed as science



1: to cause people to believe that one is (someone or something that one is not)
He thought he could pass as an adult.
2: to be accepted or regarded as (something)
the ancient practices that once passed as science


My first encounter with the term had nothing to do with being gay when I was only 7 years old. One of my childhood friends, who had just started elementary school with me introduced his parents. I was amazed to learn he was actually of African American descent, despite being pale-skinned (it took years for me to understand what Albino and early birth oxygen deprivation could do to melatonin affecting skin tones). He used the term passing as "white" and that's how I learned about the concept of passing as. Outside of myself and him, most of our elementary school class did not pursue college educations (a statistic that the disabled community suffer near 70-80% education drop rates beyond primary school). 

By passing as something he was not technically, he taught me the value of perception versus reality.

Objectively, a lot of people "pass as" something else for various reasons beyond social conventions or needs. Being gay and demisexual with a visual disability, I don't easily throw off the stereotypical gay vibe or check out other guys, so most people assume I am straight. Gay guys who interact with me assume I am either straight or asexual due to my lack of acknowledgment of visual cues. I don't mean to "pass as" something else, but it is just how I am biologically. Does it make life easier sometimes? Yes, but it also makes life harder as well for relationships.

I wonder if other people have similar issues or have encountered others as I have that "pass as" something else.

Passing is a social concept, not a political or debate worthy one, so I hope folks can discuss it without going into rhetoric.

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