Today, I interviewed somebody who was not only intelligent, interesting and honest, she doesn’t identify as human but as a bear. She is part of a community of people called Otherkin who consider themselves to be non-human if not in appearance, in spirit.
When I first heard of this community, I was in all honestly completely confused and decided an interview was the right direction to go in. This interview opened my eyes and made me reconsider those around me and the world as I know it. If you are going to read this interview, read it with an open mind and remember no two lives are the same.
Can you explain a little about yourself and what you identify as?
Ok, I’m Bear, 18 years old and a proud member of the Therian community. I identify as an Ussuri Brown bear. Although born and raised in Florida, I feel as if I’m meant to be further out west.
How did you find this out about yourself? Or is it something you’ve always known?
It’s something I’ve always known. When I was 13, I had heard about Therians but I thought they were all nuts. But deep down, I knew that I was one. I went to try and see it was a phase, and on January 6th I revealed to my friend that I was a Therian. I have been in the community for a year and a half since.
So, what does being a therian involve? has ‘coming out’ for lack of a better phrase changed your life?
Being a Therian involves many things, and it varies from person to person. For me, it involves a deeper sense of self understanding, like, I know why I act and behave a certain way, or why I do particular things. Coming out isn’t necessarily one of those necessities of Therianthropy though. Some people would rather keep to themselves. Me on the other hand, I like talking to family about my personal life, so I have come out to my family and friends, and are all very accepting. It has changed my life, and has given me more freedom as to who I am, will, and can be.
What aspects of your personality do you attribute to being a Therian or does it define you as a whole? Were family and friends immediately accepting of who you are?
Being out in public, not many people would immediately call me out as different, much less a Therian, until I tell them. Then they can see all the qualities (but again it’s different for each being). Y’see, for example. Bears don’t like conflict. They will tolerate a human being around them from a distance until the human reaches their “personal bubble”. Once interfered, bears will run away usually, or attack if it senses there is a threat. This is how I am. I will tolerate other people around me until they get to close. I will shy away usually as I do not like conflict, and then if there’s a threat, I WILL not hesitate to tell them to back off. This is just one of the many things that define me as a whole. And my friends all accepted me immediately and respect my Tcherianthropy, while my parents were skeptical at first, and I would be lying if I said they didn’t think it was weird. But they still love and accept me like any parent should.
OK that actually makes a lot of sense, it’s a really good way to put it without over-complicating your words. What aspects of your life have dramatically changed? Does it affect your sexuality? Do you define as asexual or is it not related?
No aspect of my life has really dramatically changed, except for the fact that some people will not like me for who I am, and I accept that. And my sexuality is unrelated to my Therianthropy.
I think no matter what you do, you’ll always be disliked by somebody so it’s not really anything to worry about. Is there anything else you’d like to talk about?
How have you found other Therians to be? I have found within communities that I’m part of there’s always a bit of rivalry and snobbery. Do you find anything like this within the Therian community?
How I like other Therians is actually relevant to my kintype. I have a general dislike for wolves, wolf kin, wolfaboos, you name it. Of course, I have friends who are wolf Therians, but they have worked their way up there to be my friends. As for prey animals, I feel nothing towards them except for respect, as they are an animal that gives their life to provide sustenance for a whole range of species. And of course, there’s always rivalry at least somewhere. There will always be that one Therian, donned in wolfie blackheart attire and part of the whole teenage craze and fascination to be different, and, while some are truly therian, others believe that they truly have wolf blood. While I’m not condemning them, they don’t contribute much to forums (Some do), I’m wary of their antics. Look up Wolfie Blackheart and Deikitsune Wolfram Lupus. They ran a pack in San Antonio together, and even though it’s a whole lot like Therianthropy (and to them, it could be), give it another ten years to them and it will probably be a thing of the past. Not sure if this answers your question, but I feel it’s applicable.
Oh I didn’t even think of it that way. At least I admit I’m ignorant, haha. That’s really quite amazing. How do you usually spot a fake or somebody who’s just going through a phase?
People outside the community will usually not be able to tell the difference. But lets say, someone joins a forum. An intro should sound like “Hello, I am xxx, my Theriotype is a yyy and I have known this for zzz years. I am hoping to contribute blablabla to this community, and get my opinions out there.”. But a faker* to me would sound a lot [like] “Hi I’m (name relating to Theriotype 90% of the time), and I really like xxx animal! I want to make a pack and howl with people! hope I get to meet you all!”. (*This does not define all fakes and no offense is intended). You can usually tell just by their vibes. Some kin do possess an ability to detect such posers. So I suppose a lot of the time, it’s natural.
Is there anything else you’d like to mention?
I guess what I can say is, don’t make the mistake I did and put off what you feel in your gut. I felt I was a true Therian all these years but I stashed it away on the back-burner, leaving me with many questions about myself all those years.
Well, I think it’s fantastic that you are happy with who you are now and not ashamed to admit it and honestly, a lot of what you have said has made me see it very differently. Thank you so much for your time!
You’re so welcome! I’m glad you took the time to understand Therianthropy, rather than be critical about it like many others.