My name is Ashe Haigh, and I am a gender-fucked social failure, which I have explained further in my first article which you can find here. I am a neurodivergent, transfeminine, aromantic, and queer person, and society would prefer to view my various identities as failures. Through writing and advocacy I aim to challenge those ideologies to create change. I am also an uninvited white settler living on the stolen and unceded lands of the Coast Salish people, specifically the Wyomilth, W̱SÁNEĆ and Lekwungen territories.
The term neurodivergent is to describe my experiences as someone who is on the autism spectrum. I also experience mental illness such as depression and anxiety to a heightened degree based on my experiences with exclusion and oppression, and the generalized isolation that I encounter due to my inability to communicate in social situations. I find it difficult to interact with other human beings, which can be a very isolating and lonely experience when you sincerely enjoy the presence of others. On a more academic level, the term neurodivergent is an inclusive way to describe the diversity of our minds and the infinite representations of neurocognitive experiences.
The terms transfeminine and queer describe my experiences with gender expression, identity and sexuality. Those who are transfeminine are often described as trans and gender-variant people who were coercively assigned male at birth, but identify with femininity rather than masculinity. It functions as an umbrella term that includes the experiences of various identities, such as trans women, demi-girls, and other non-binary identities. The term queer can sometimes be contentious within our communities. This is because historically it has been used as a slur towards those with seemingly different sexual experiences and gender identities. However, over time there has been an increasing movement to reclaim this word, and it has become an umbrella term to describe a plethora of identities that society would otherwise view as perverse or deviant.
I am also a student at the University of Victoria in British Columbia, Canada. I have been attending courses at this institution for about six years. During this time I have completed a Bachelor of Arts (BA) in English, and Greek and Roman Studies. Following that degree, I returned to enroll in the Gender Studies department, and I am about to graduate with a second BA in Gender Studies. In the future I hope to return and enroll in courses to achieve a Masters in Social Work (MSW). You might be wondering why I’ve decided to dedicate so much of my life to education at a post-secondary institution. The reality is that most of my first degree was done through indecisiveness. At the time I had no idea what I wanted to do with my life, or what I was passionate about. It wasn’t until after I graduated and started to more seriously explore my sexuality and gender that I would discover a passion for queer and trans advocacy. My future dream is to work with queer and trans youth in crisis situations, or to support survivors of sexual violence.
I am also very passionate about various social justice issues such as youth empowerment, anti-racism and anti-colonialism, harm reduction, queer and trans advocacy, and intersectional feminism. I want my career to center on these passions, and I want to engage in work that challenges toxic hegemonic ideals and systemic oppression. My dream is to continue working in volunteer and non-profit initiatives to support others and uphold the voices and experiences of marginalized communities.
Thanks for taking the time to read this and learn more about me!