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This is kind of a negative slant on the whole "innate traits" thing, too. It's not just stuff I wish I could change about myself. There are a lot of positive things about myself that I also think are innate. Things that I would never want to change even if I could.

I ... just put something together that feels like I could get traction on this.

All the things that I've always wanted to change about myself, but couldn't. All the patterns I couldn't help but fall into, even though I knew they were "wrong" or would get me in trouble.

...those are innate, aren't they? It matches the definition of "innate" perfectly. Things I actually can't change about myself.

This is exactly why I'm jealous of otherkin. That unshakeable faith that they -are- something. They don't need to justify how they feel deep down. It's innate in a spiritual way. I have never felt that way and I have always longed to, but "because I want to" is exactly the opposite of something being innate.

Something I do always have problems with is the assumption in furry circles that I have a single character who is me. I feel a little hobbled by not having a ready answer to that. I don't have anyone who is "my OC". I have a city full of them. I can map things about myself onto dozens of different characters, so I end up feeling terminally indecisive and not really afforded the same ability to participate in things as people who can just say "this is me".

🛅, identity stuff 

ADHD, too. I can't tell if I have that or not. I sometimes show signs of it, and they're ones I recognize having followed me around all my life, but I've never been formally diagnosed with any kind of mental/emotional thing, and I think a large part of that was my parents deciding not to. That I was just the "weird smart kid" and it wasn't worth delving any deeper into _why_.

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🛅, identity stuff 

• Sexual orientation. What I know: I don't want to see exposed genitals or bare breasts. They drive me away. So I'm ace, right? But I can't tell if that behavior is innate or learned. Plus there are other things that do turn me on the same way, so does that mean I'm not?
• Autism. I have feelings and behaviors in common with that. How do I know for sure if I am or not? What even do I look for?

Let's take a concrete example. I'm not transgender myself, but a lot of my friends are, and the common thread there seems to be "the sex I feel I am inside doesn't match the one I was assigned at birth". It's innate, which makes it worth defending and makes it worth the considerable effort it takes to get the hormones and eventually the surgery and so on. If that feeling could change, then people could be argued out of being trans, and I can't see that ever being a good thing.

There are a lot of things I might be, but I have never known for sure if my experiences are enough proof. If there really are reasons to belong somewhere, innate and immutable like I've been led to believe all the important identity stuff is, then I'd like to know how to tell what those are in ways no one can gatekeep me out of.

A large part of the problem I have declaring or even feeling "yes, I really am X" for some X in the set of communities out there is that there's this fear of being made to prove myself. That someone on the inside will point out how I'm actually not X and that claiming I am is appropriative and harmful and I should never claim to be X again. Because, in a lot of cases, I don't know how to actually _prove_ I belong somewhere. It can't just be down to feelings. I feel like I need a certificate.

There we go. Recovered my account details and now I can get back to using this place. I'm not getting a lot of use out of this server, but I'd like to. It does need a fresh coat of paint, but I'm better at doing that than I was back then.

Testing this is still up, and - sure enough, it is. Good.

Dreamt last night I was in a crowded but joyous place. There was a fountain, an arcade, live music, and a bookstore that served the few college classes that were held there (in auditoriums off to the side of the main plaza, far enough away that noise wasn’t a problem). It was a bit of a maze to get around, though, and shortcutting through the restrooms or jumping down from balconies were ways I ended up getting around.

BJ boosted

Two sketches tonight - just a pair of four-armed characters in various states of relaxation. This is still very much my style, character-design-wise, and I've been trying to reassert that side of myself more strongly.

"Whalefish"? Eesh. I meant . And this time I've properly hashmarked it.

Whalefish is a pretty nice Masto client. Frankly there's something about a Linux desktop - like, properly installed on live hardware instead of running in a VM - that feels cozy to me.

There we go. A few steps into getting this whole new system set up, and it's starting to feel pretty comfortable.

I live! I have some ideas now that are going to give this account some purpose. This is called XenoChat, after all. I have a new logo for the whole Xeno project (which I'll be installing later on), and a whole fictional universe (okay, a whole fictional city; universes are big) waiting behind the doors here.

Felt like drawing Lillian again. I was watching anime at the time, though, and so the pose turned into this sort of ready-for-action thing. She's got a new jacket, but those are still the same pair of jeans she's had for decades now. They're cozy.

I ought to start using this account more. It's been sitting here untouched while Elseways is kind of on hold as a project - the intent was to build that up to something bigger, but it's been hard getting started on actual content. This is a perpetual problem of mine. I love building the engines, but I never have any fuel left over to run them.

The same adventurer as yesterday, casting a Hover spell. They're a Kinesthete, a physics-themed mage/athlete whose spells can make things lighter, heavier, faster, slower, or in this case hover. They're good at non-elemental effects and have a good balance of physical and magical power.

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The official server of the City of Elseways.