I've been reading through some of these asks, and I've been having a few issues so I thought I'd try and ask you one, so here goes nothing!
So, Papabear, I am a young biologically female furry. Kind of odd, I'm around 14 or so and female which is... to say the least, rather uncommon in the furry fandom. My parents are very tolerant, and let me go to conventions and fursuit, and my sister does the same.
However, I've noticed that while not in fursuit people tend to be very awkward or shy around me. Is it because they don't know how to act around females or young people?? How can I present myself to show I'm not some immature child that doesn't know what she's doing?
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Thank you for waiting for my reply. Papabear got behind on mail because of his recent move. Anyway, I’d first like to say that you should count yourself very lucky for having a family that loves you for you, furry or not, and lets you fursuit and do other fun furry stuff. You are a minority in that regard, moreso even than the fact that males outnumber females in the fandom.
As for furries acting differently around you when you are out of suit than when you are fursuiting, I believe that has more to do with interacting with your fursona vs. the real you than it does with your being a 14-year-old female. I’m a 47-year-old male, and furries act very differently around me when I am not in suit than they do when I am Grubbs. So, the reason doesn’t have to do with your age and gender.
What it has to do with is fantasy versus reality. Papabear strongly believes that many furries (not by any means a majority, but a lot) feel socially awkward in normal human-to-human relationships, and so a big reason why they adopt fursonas, especially those who wear fursuits, is to form a protective shield, if you will, that makes it easier to deal with the social world around them. Why? Because when in character it is not really “them” that is interacting with the world but another personality, and so if something bad happens, it happens to that other character, not really to them. Case in point: I am very different as Grubbs than I am in my human form. I could never get on stage and perform as Kevin, but I can do so as my bear self. I don’t feel shy or awkward anymore.
The same is kind of true in reverse. Many furries who are not wearing a fursuit find it easier to deal with a fursuiter than with a real person. When dealing with someone who looks like a husky or a horse or a lion or whatever, you aren’t dealing with a human, and so the normal human conventions that make one feel awkward disappear. Take off the head, and the social norms pop right back up, and you can actually see some furries shy away on the spot.
So, Maddie, Papabear doesn’t believe this has anything to do with anyone thinking you’re an “immature child.” I think you are imposing that interpretation upon the situation yourself. No, the real answer is the comparison of social interactions between those who are wearing masks and those who are not.
Hope that answers your question.
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