• Member Since 10th Jul, 2011
  • offline last seen Feb 3rd, 2018

uberPhoenix


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Spike opens up to Twilight about his struggles with his gender identity.

Admitting you're not what others expect of you is difficult. Admitting you're not what you expect of yourself is even harder. And some things don't have simple answers. Spike can't figure out if his time in Ponyville has changed him, or if he was never quite what he imagined he would be in the first place.

Inspired by a comment in an article on autostraddle here: www.autostraddle.com/my-little-pony-lesbianism-is-magic-138465/

Chapters (1)
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Comments ( 85 )

I love it when stories deal with themes as deeply as this one does. Good job! :twilightsmile:

Mm. Dangerous topic - in the miinds of those not familiar with the subject and are too concerned about their own sexuality to learn - pulled off brilliantly. Well done. Excellent dialogue, spot-on characters, and the subject matter approached respectfully. Again, bravo.

:pinkiesmile:

There was parts (especially when Spike spoke with RD) when I was confused, maybe it was intended, maybe a slight mistake or maybe simply becuse I'm reading this 1 in the morning with a slight headache :twilightblush:
I might actually re-read this when I'm not so tired.

Anyways, good job on writing on a touchy subject (I'll never understand why some people have a problem with this).

Thumbed up and greatly appriciated. :heart:

I don't know how to take this... a guy doesn't have to be manly to be a guy still. He's just more sensitive and interested in more feminine things I guess. He' basically like any number of straight male fashion designers... is that how it's supposed to be taken. I just don't know...

Oh I know exactly which comment you're referring to... and I must admit, it did spark a consideration of that topic for me, too. A very well-written story on that concept, I must say. Characterisation's down to a tee, and you really picked up on how the emotions flowed with this topic. A sterling effort, all around. Kudos for tackling such a deep subject in such a thoughtful way.

this has so much potential you can just leave it where it is there needs to be more.

701772 I think so. We know he likes rarity so his straght but i think its just that he hangs around girls to much he does not know what a "guy" is i mean a guy does not have to be a prev but i think he just wonders what is what.

Whatever I like it Spikes mind is a wried place.

701837 To be fair women are pervs too, they're just better at hiding it.

701852 Yeah i know thats true. :pinkiehappy:

701772

The intent is not that Spike doesn't understand what a guy is like, or that Spike thinks guys have to be manly. As far as this story is concern, Spike discovers that he simply does not identify as a man.

This happens to a lot of people, and it's referred to as being transgendered.

I actually went back and added another paragraph to clarify Spike's stance on the matter:

"And I know that it's fine for a boy to like things like cooking and cleaning and that none of that stuff makes me any less of a man. Rainbow Dash said that there's more than one way to be a girl, and I guess that means that there's more than one way to be a boy to. But this goes beyond that. I'm not a guy who likes girly things. I actually feel more comfortable around you guys than I ever would around a bunch of colts. I see myself with you, as one of you. Maybe there's a little bit more to what Rainbow Dash said. Maybe there's not just more than one way to be a girl. Maybe, just maybe, there can be more than one way to become a girl. Or is that just stupid? I know you probably think I'm weird." My voice was slightly muffled by her coat.

For a moment, neither of us spoke. We just stayed there, me leaning into her, relying on her, completely helpless and dependent on the one pony I really truly loved, more than whatever attraction I had for Rarity. Then she spoke.

Max

I dont get it, he is gay? Or really a female? :applejackconfused:
this is so weird lolol

701945

Spike, for the purposes of this story, Spike is a biologically male dragon who does identifies as neither. He has not yet figured out what he does identify as. He is likely transgendered or genderqueer.

I suggest you research gender identities if you want more information.

umm...DAFUQ DID I JUST READ????:facehoof:

This invites the old Nature vs. Nurture question. On the one hoof, or equivalent thereof, Spike has spent almost all his life in the company of mares. Then again, Spike could have been born this way, and who would have known? And who says everypony (and Spike, during the Dragon Quest, claimed ponyhood) is either A or B?

Lots of potential here. More, please.

701986 we need more chapters please
this could be a great thing
dont have to
just a request

702713

I can't make any promises about a sequel. For starters, I don't yet have an idea for the plot, and if the inspiration doesn't strike me, I can't write.

But more importantly, I have two multi-chapter stories I'm currently in the middle of writing. (A World Without Rainbows and The Most Dangerous Game.) I'm committed to both of them, and I've promised myself that I won't do any other long stories until World Without Rainbows is finished.

So, a sequel could happen someday. It's not out of the question. But for now, I have other things I need to work on.

702734 well the plot will probly be his daily life after he cane out
but i understand and i can wait as long as necessary

I was waiting for someone to do this story. Spike being transgendered makes more sense than Rainbow Dash.

I hope you'll at least do an Epilogue.

Max

I didn't wanted to sound rude, i was just confused as hell, good story tough.

Nice introspection into Spike's mind there.

Possibly every thinker worries about their own identity in society at some point. I can't imagine what it's like to be in the wrong body. But I do understand that it can be depressing and cruel when you can't/won't fit society's expectations and standards. The plight of these people must be quite depressing.

Seeing as MLP is (despite its diverse characters) very female-centric, this must be an issue for one such as Spike, who's been around females all his life. That makes this a really interesting story concept.

Just wondering if you're going to submit this to EqD.

705342

Normally I don't submit the things I write to EQD. I personally feel that EQD is supposed to be a sort of spotlight to share the best parts of the fandom, both the big stars worthy of spotlighting and the up-and-coming amateurs that have the talent and want to advertise. I feel like, in terms of skill and exposure, I'm below the former but above the latter (I've gathered some followers from the other stories I've written, and thus I no longer need EQD's advertising to attract readers. Thus, according to my opinions on how EQD should be used, I should concede the spotlight to bigger, better, more prominent works, and to people that need exposure more than I do.

However, since this story seems to be attracting a pretty positive response, and it's been hanging out in the "popular stories" sidebar just above My Little Dashie and Anthropology, I made a judgement call a few hours ago to go on ahead and submit it anyway. Since dangit, if this got enough readers to push it into the preview box, I would die of happiness.

In general, though, I would encourage people to submit other people's works to EQD, but only if the reader thinks the writer deserves it. The voice of the masses is a much better representation of a story's quality than the voice of the author.

tl;dr: I'm a hypocrite.

I'm going to stick my neck out here: I read this, I like the fic, but I'm not recommending it be posted. I'm saying this ahead of time because I don't know what the final decision will be. I just wanted to say - this is a worthy fic to read, but I wouldn't choose to post it for a number of reasons you probably won't agree as being worthwhile reasons. Namely, it's a polemic, it's not enough of a story (we're not an advocacy site), Spike is out of character and not enough of the pathos is there. I don't believe "it's a pro-LGBT fic" gets to trump that, nor (and I really wish to stress this) is it a reason not to post it. I just don't buy it. There's no feeling of heart-rending decision-making, it just... happens. "I think I'm a (opposite gender)" strikes me as something that takes more than two weeks (and a sentence to that effect) to come to a conclusion about.

So hey, here's me saying "I'm going to say no, but not because I'm an asshole", and letting you know I'm calling for a second opinion. Make it longer, make me feel that agonizing, make it heart-rending and full of the sorts of pain that such a decision comes with, make me buy the ordeal and I'll happily change my mind.

After a quick trip to Merriam Webster to figure out what "Polemic" means, I realize that you have a point.

Yeah, this story was written in a weekend. It's wasn't something I was even planning on writing until I got the idea about a day before I put pen to paper. It's not a carefully sculpted work of art, (which is interesting, considering that most of my other stories are simple fluff adventure stories, and are thus even less worthy of being considered artistic.) I submitted it because I got excited from the positive feedback, and I kind of got a big head.

I agree with everything you said. I shouldn't rush things like I so often to.

Also, based on the way you're wording this, I'm assuming you're my prereader. Thanks for the open communication. I think that's awesome.

706178 So will there be more of this story

706493

Perhaps eventually. Or perhaps I'll rework what I have. I agree that the story could use some more work.

However, it's low on my list of priorities. I need to get the next chapter of World Without Rainbows out, and then maybe we'll see.

706178 yes, and it looks like it didn't get posted. Sorry about that. The real clincher was that your story is too light to buy your version of Spike. If you do rework this, you should really sell what it means to go through that sort of gender identity crisis, because in the show Spike is very vocally against "all that sort of fru-fru stuff" despite his being glad about the ticket, and despite his being teased in the dragon quest episode (it was more of a foil for how dragons really were, and for humour). The sentence about two weeks just didn't cut it for me. I know a few TG people, and from what they say it was years of agonizing before they even attempted to find alternatives. Granted, showing that is nigh impossible in a story, but you can do more. You should, if you feel drawn to, and you can of course resubmit.

708690

Thank you. I know that some people complain about the prereaders, but you have been very helpful. I'm beginning to wonder if those people just don't like constructive criticism. I'm sure you have some horror stories from your work.

In the end, I violated my "don't submit your own works rule," but was met with helpful criticism, advice, and steps in the right direction. I regret nothing.

I do realize that I downplayed the tragedy of the situation, but this is ponies. Try as I might, I don't think I have the willpower to make these ponies suffer.

tl;dr: Thank you, midnightshadow. You take time to help EQD and help other people with their stories, and that makes you one froody dude. Keep being awesome.

708741 Mostly, people do not take kindly to having their special snowflakes criticized. We make mistakes, we're human (or ponies:pinkiehappy:) and we don't always make "the right" decision, but we try. It's why I started the training grounds and the pre-reader thread on /fic/ on ponychan. Horror stories? Yeah, there are a few memorable ones.

You should always submit your own work, please do not be put off. Do you need EqD? No, not as an ego-boost. You can write, you just didn't this time take your own work seriously enough. I know this is ponies, but when you write serious stuff, be serious. I totally agree, being "mean" to these cuddly ponies is extremely difficult.

Well, I've got to admit this is quite a unusual (and perhaps touchy) subject for a fanfiction. So massive credit to you on that.

I think you handled the subject way better than I expected. It still seems like this "version" of Spike pretty much comes out of nowhere. An greater insight of the reasoning that leads this Spike to the conclusion that (s)he doesn't identify as male would have been both interesting to read, and made everything more believable.

One little thing I thought was strange, also, was that even though you make him say/think that he still isn't sure if he identifies as female or not, the characters (including Spike) are quick to call "her" a "filly", etc. It kind of contradicts the whole "gender doesn't work in a binary way" thing.

Gender identity issues are neither something that I find relatable nor offensive, so I can't say this fic hit me in a particularly significant way, but I do appreciate a good old "secret to reveal" scenario.

Oh also, nice characterization, for the reactions to Spike's confession. Particularly loved the "Can't say I understand, but there's a lot of things I don't understand" line from Applejack, for some reason.

So anyway, nice original idea and pretty good execution, apart from what I pointed out.

All I can say is brilliant; simply brilliant. If I'm honest, I wish I had a fraction of that little lizard's bravery and resolve. Bravo, Sir! Bravo!

If I was Spike, I would have grit my teeth a tiny bit with those responses (subtly off in the way that better responses tend to be from my experience; so I guess their responses were very plausible) but then again, when one is expecting the worst, its hard to notice a few blemishes when it turns out well. So it was quite realistic in this respect.

Overall, what is presently here in the story so far is a good base and part of the house. Like many have said, Spike's feelings and thought processes could be extended a bit and connect to their (singular they is my favorite) past experiences some to finish or round it off. Midnightshadow mentioned the Gala ticket and Spike being vocal against "fru-fru stuff." These among other things could actually be some of these connections to Spike's past if played right. There are a plethora of ways to do it if you feel so inclined.

701896

That addition was VERY GOOD. In addition to making the story more clear for the audience; Spike would definitely have had to think about this topic and would know they would have to talk about it to Twilight since the "maybe I am just a feminine guy" is a much easier conclusion to come about oneself than the "no, that doesn't quite fit, I'm not a guy" conclusion. So, two birds with one stone.

701772 You know, I got to agree with Cloud on this, I'm male and not gay in the least...I like cooking and cleaning (not that I have a choice) and I more into depth with how I feel about and look at women then most 'men' but I'm honestly confused on how Spike protrays himself now...is he a female? Is he a he/she? I'm so confused, sure some things can be neither but that's such things that are not in gender bound, such as Death or Fate or Karma or Destiny, ya know....I'm sorry, I can't chose if I liked this or not, and I was sort of hoping this would be a Spike/Rainbow Dash romance....anyhay, I'll wait for my answer that I'm hoping someone will give to me soon as I go look fro a Spike/Rainbow Dash fic.

767551 Basically from what I derived he's going drag queen but still likes women. Kind of like Mr. Garrison on South Park after the sex change. And I'll have that chapter of Spike and His Six Lovely Ladies out this weekend :twilightsheepish: If not I have to throw my proofreader to the wolves.

767918 Hmmm.....I think I understand a bit now, thanks Cloud and oh..... can I help you?!

767967 Nah, I just have to finish the last part of the build up and then the fun parts. I have something else to finish tonight and tomorrow and then post once that's proofread. Then Lovely Ladies get's all my writing attention for the rest of the week. Your welcome, and yea this was... strange.

768003 Very well and despise our differances in pairings, we can find some...natural ground at least, correct? I'll be reading your story Spike and his six lovely ladies, hoping it's more then just Spike/Rarity romance and having a feeling that it is. Good luck on your new story.

768017 That's the idea. I actually think people will like how I showed the emotions for Dash and Fluttershy better then how I did for A.J. and Rarity. The post is an update not a new story though.

768045 Cool, can't wait to read it, I'm also down for some Rainbow Dash/Fluttershy and I'm hoping to get into Applejack/Rarity, never read that pairing before.

768076 I can't stand that pairing. It just doesn't make any sense. Notably if you want to continue this My blog would probably be better since at this point we've spammed like 10 notifications into this authors pop up box. I hold all types of rants there.

Riz

701896

Hello..umm..I'm sorry but I don't understamd your fic. Is Spike a girl/dragoness ? :rainbowhuh:

Riz

828403


Oh..now I see....:twilightsheepish:

767551

You are absolutely right that a guy can most definitely be feminine and still be male (just as RD is masculine but still female), though there is a subtle difference between a feminine guy and an equally feminine girl (and similarly a masculine girl and an equally masculine guy) which is what Spike has been grappling with in the fic and come to the conclusion that the guy part of feminine guy is not so accurate. I will definitely say that a similar subtlety definitely kept me in denial about being a trans-girl for a very long time (I'm sort of a tomboy and tend towards the butch side of things). So yeah, the spectrum of gender expressions for different genders is very wide, so wide that there is considerable overlap.

833745 You make a very valid point, and I agree with you, I think it's bucked up how males think that if they have emotions or understand women that they are not men, it's really annoying as buck as men think they can do anythnig and shove women in a corner, as if they are only good for sex, drinking or more sex...women have emotions and thought and are very smart, I know a lot of women who can kick a dude's ass, so women should have just as much right as males....ya know?

702138
A story about gender identity.

Great fic by the way. It's interesting to know that there are authors in the fandom who think about MLP and gender identity besides the tumblrpon.

857531

There are people in the tumblrverse talking about ponies and gender identity? Where?

860539
kyronea.tumblr.com
howdoponieswork.tumblr.com
donnysboy.tumblr.com/

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