As someone who is and identifies as a cisgender heterosexual woman, I’m not sure if I should be writing about this. In my last post, I wrote about how some LGBT+ actors experience a double standard. Many of them often only get roles that portray an LGBT+ character, but rarely receive roles to play cisgender or heteronormative roles. I’ve been thinking about what I wrote about and it’s not that I think playing a heteronormative character should be the ultimate goal for an LGBT+ actor. I believe there is an unequal amount of opportunity in Hollywood and mainstream media. Cis actors will play trans characters and will be congratulated. Why not have a trans actor play a cisgender role? Or at least exist in heteronormative spaces.
However, what is heteronormativity and why is this the ultimate goal to assimilate to it? Heteronormativity and Queerness are social constructions. Heteronormativity assumes that heterosexuality is the default. The social norm is to get married, buy a home, and have a family. “Queerness” does not dictate sexuality or gender. LGBT+ individuals did not fall under the heteronormative umbrella, they created their own culture, queer spaces, and family. Since heteronormativity was seen as the default, LGBT+ continuously fought (and continue to fight) for their rights to be treated as equals. They should be allowed to want the same things and should have the same things as heteronormative people. However, as of right now there are 28 countries who have legalized gay marriage. For some members of the LGBT+ community have assimilated to a heteronormative culture. They’re married, they live in a home, and their own families. Maybe it is generational, but as someone who is supposed to fit under the heteronormative narrative, none of it seems appealing to me. Marriage and having a family is not something I ever envision for myself. I know the same goes for other heterosexual people. I believe that culturally we’re at a point that heteronormativity is being less idealized. The heteronormative lifestyle just feels very constricting to me. It is too structured and I think that is why I find myself moving away from it. That’s not to say it is every LGBT+ person’s goal to assimilate to a heteronormative lifestyle. I believe the goal is just for everyone to exist with each other in a way we all feel comfortable, regardless of these social constructions that were built. They still exist and will probably will always continue to exist, but as individuals were allowed to change and remove any norms that no longer seem to fit with our culture. Please feel free to leave a comment and tell me your thoughts.
*I would like to note that, I understands members of the LGBT+ community continue to face injustice, prejudice, and there is still a lot of hate that is targeted towards people simply because of how they identify or who they love.*