Family / Kids / Parenting

Labels Belong On The Tags Of Camp Clothes; Identites Don’t

Meet Levi Sable, yet another of the new contributors populating VillageQ. You might know him from Queer Dads Blog: and if you don’t, you’ll want to go back there and have a look around. He’ll be posting here monthly, and we’re thrilled about it! ~ VQ Eds


I am so tired of labelling myself, even as my list of labels grows. I’m pretty sure I’m not alone—I’m guessing a lot of you readers can relate. When you’re at the top of the kyriarchy, your identity isn’t something you declare. There’s a whole load of assumptions that accompany you wherever you go—for better or worse.

Call the bank, and you can easily mention your wife or husband without hearing that awkward half-pause that means your banker’s brain cells have suddenly become lit up with rainbow pride flags, their every synapse firing. “GAY. GAY. GAAAAY.” Looking at apartments, you don’t have to shout pronouns into the phone and repeat your (male) partner’s name over and over, all while your prospective landlord asks you about your wife’s job. (Sigh.) And the stealth side of the coin isn’t great, either. Why are they at the pride parade? Perhaps one (or both!) of you are trans or bi. Or a combination. But you aren’t what they expect, and so you’re lost—or outcast.

My 4-year-old, Jetpack, has spent the last year or two letting everyone know he has two dads—sometimes appropriately, and sometimes not. He labels us so wonderfully, so carelessly, and it’s both refreshing and exhausting.

I would argue, though, that identity isn’t the same a label. Identity is amorphous. Limitless. My identity is mine, for me, not for you. And coming to grips with it—or at least, beginning to—can be one of the best things we can do for ourselves. I know it was the best thing I could do for myself.

I read straight-oriented mom blogs for a long time before Jetpack torpedoed into the world (let’s be honest, I still do. You can take my schlocky, hetero, blogs out of my cold, dead hands). When I transitioned into Jetpack’s dad, I grasped (someone desperately, I’ll admit) for similar parents to myself, with more complicated identities. I was, honestly, a little disappointed at the dearth of media out there. So myself and two other fab fellows started Queer Dads Blog—which has been great.

And now here’s VillageQ! A whole new project, morphing from an already awesome website. Encompassing identities and transcending the kind of labels that are sometimes useful and sometimes limiting. I’m excited to be a part of another step forward in community-building, sharing my life with you readers, and hearing the bits and pieces that you feel like sharing, as well! I’m Levi. I’m Jetpack’s dad, partnered to MrS, and I’m very happy to be here.

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  1. Best of all, your avatar is a capybara!!!

  2. I am so very happy that you’re here! You’ll forgive me if I label you “wonderful.”

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