Scales of Outness

By , October 22, 2010 10:41 pm

Coming out of the closet isn't always easy...

There’s a post, Out Open, Closed, and In, at The Spectrum Cafe, that caught my attention. It’s about the spectrum of ‘outness’ trans people can choose to have: Out, Open, Blended, Closed, In, and Stealth. Dyssonance’s full definitions in her post, but briefly:

  • Out – someone who makes a point to have ‘trans’ as part of their identity
  • Open – someone who is willing to discuss their trans status, but not go out of their way to highlight it
  • Blended – “[being trans] is a non issue — something that isn’t a topic for discussion unless the discussion is specifically relating to something important for themselves”
  • Closed – “They don’t want people to know they are trans, and usually being closed is more a matter of simply not having had control and being put into a position that prevents them from being In”
  • In – “In folks are what we have long called “stealth” — but stealth carries with it connotations of hiding, of deception, of intrigue…”

It’s an interesting scale, and I’d agree more useful than simply saying someone is Out or Stealth.

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