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Pregnant Butch: Nine Long Months Spent in Drag

3.77  ·  Rating details ·  1,184 ratings  ·  171 reviews
First pregnancy can be a fraught, uncomfortable experience for any woman, but for resolutely butch lesbian Teek Thomasson, it is exceptionally challenging: Teek identifies as a masculine woman in a world bent on associating pregnancy with a cult of uber-femininity. Teek wonders, “Can butches even get pregnant?”

Of course, as she and her pragmatic femme girlfriend Vee discov
Paperback, 118 pages
Published March 18th 2014 by Soft Skull Press (first published January 1st 2014)
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 ·  1,184 ratings  ·  171 reviews

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Deborah Markus
Jul 02, 2015 rated it really liked it
I was going to write a full-on review, but then I realized 1) this book is going to be overdue at the library if I try, and I'm tired of paying late fees for books I've actually finished reading, and 2) the title pretty much says it all. If you like the sound of a graphic memoir called Pregnant Butch: Nine Long Months Spent in Drag, you'll like this book.

I will say real quick that I loved the moment when she realizes that all those things you can do during labor – standing, squatting, showering
Kaity Molé
Nov 11, 2014 rated it it was ok
This book showed a lot of promise and I enjoyed the first half until I encountered A.K.'s transphobic rant halfway through. She has no idea what she's talking about and would have done a lot better to stick to her own experiences instead of trying to devalue and mock the experiences of "those young kids and their trans*/genderqueer stuff these days". She comes off like the gross "womyn born womyn only" tribes. Go hang out at Mich Fest and lay off writing books, A.K. I don't want that transphobic ...more
Dave Schaafsma
Okay, as a straight white middle aged male, I just may not be in the target demographic for this book. Seriously, Summers seems to have, and reasonably, a GLBT audience in mind, and yet, is it interesting and useful for us to get to know what it might be for GLBT couples to raise children? I think so. This book depicts a time not so long ago, turn of this century, yet seems longer ago because of world changing GLBT events and dramatic attitude changes. Summers admits that it is now a kind of his ...more
Emma Sea
Touching and thinky. I wish I'd had this to read during my own pregnancy, back in the dark ages. Loved the art and humor.

Side Note: It still blows my mind that it costs so much (that it costs anything!) for pre-natal medical care and delivery in the U.S.
Nov 29, 2014 rated it it was ok
I loved this POV and the art is terrific. I didn't love the rad-fem transphobic weirdness in the middle. I won't ever really get that. ...more
Elizabeth A
Feb 19, 2017 rated it really liked it
I haven't had children so skipped all those books about what to expect when you're expecting, but the title of this book is what hooked me. Nine long months spent in drag? Tell me more.

This graphic memoir recounts the authors' experiences as she navigated this heavily trodden path as a not just a queer woman, but a butch one at that. There is humor and aggravations galore, but it all turns out well in the end. The art is good and I especially enjoyed the nod to Tintin. This is a fun and informa
Oct 06, 2013 rated it really liked it
I got an advanced copy of Pregnant Butch to review for The Queer Book Club of Providence. We'll definitely add it to our list.

I was not a big fan of graphic novels at first. Since we've read a few in the Club, I'm slowly beginning to enjoy the form a little more and get over my snobbiness about "comics". The story line, drawing, and what I'd call the deeper meanings of this book are all worth exploring.

The plot line is pretty simple: butch dyke decides to bear a child, and does. What happens alo
Mar 23, 2018 rated it it was ok
Shelves: comic
I was recommended this book because I was also a pregnant butch (caveat: as an enby, I use the term differently than the author). At first I enjoyed it--it aptly portrayed the relentless stress of engaging the cishet world as a pregnant queer person.

But then there came the transphobic panels, contained largely in the section titled "And More Tests," starting on page 53. She says that going through childbirth made her a less insecure butch, but I look at these panels and it's clear she needs to
Apr 25, 2014 rated it it was amazing
Gender is hard.
Feb 21, 2017 rated it liked it
I will say that I did enjoy this book, but hearing her snide remarks (or maybe I'm just being paranoid) about genderqueer and trans* folks put me off a little bit. It makes it hard for me to be sympathetic with "the woes of being butch and pregnant" when you can't even have the same empathy for your other queer trans* peers.

Other than that though, I found this book to be enjoyable, and even a bit informative.
Hannah Garden
Oh man I totally read this in December 2017 and had ZERO memory of it! I get mad at Oriana for wielding this as a sword against books because as much as is different between what we like and don't like one thing is for certain: we will forget the shit out of EVERYTHING, loved or despised.

Anyway yeah so when it came up we were gonna do it in book club I saw that I hadn't starred or reviewed it which is something I do sometimes if I am mad at something but don't feel like it would be OK to tell th
Stewart Tame
Aug 11, 2016 rated it really liked it
A.K. Summers, a dyed-in-the-wool butch lesbian and her partner (same sex marriage wasn't legal at the time) decide to have a baby. This is an autobiographical comic book doing what autobiographical comic books do best. Summers has an engaging, earnest style--it reminds me somewhat of a cross between Justin Green and Spain Rodriguez--and brings a wealth of detail to bear in her quest to convey her experiences. She also likes drawing herself as Tintin. There are ups and downs, some of them familia ...more
I really liked the way she posed this story as a place in time. It takes place in the early 2000s, and things have changed since then.

As an episodic depiction of butch pregnancy, it works well. It doesn't go into any detail about the decision to get pregnant in the first place, the relationship with her partner, or many other voyeuristic elements, but it does a good job of doing what it sets out to do (and adds to my decision not to procreate in the process).

I really appreciated page 16, where
Kate Stericker
For the most part, this is a cute and insightful graphic memoir about pregnancy and queer identity during the early 2000s. However, as other have mentioned, the four-page comic towards the middle of the book titled "And More Tests" presents an extremely insensitive take on trans and genderqueer issues. This episode provides no justification for its dismissive claims and makes it difficult to enjoy the rest of the book in an uncomplicated way. ...more
Apr 29, 2019 rated it liked it
This was definitely more interesting than Kid Gloves, which my book club also read last month in a harrowing pregnancy double-feature. (I say harrowing because I don't like babies and am squicked out by pregnancy and have troublingly un-feminine views on the pursuit of parenthood.) This was more interesting to me than that because it had the added dimension of identity and sexuality. I was shocked to learn, for example, that A.K. actually presented as more manly in the first part of her pregnanc ...more
Lacey Louwagie
Memoir graphic novels are my favorite of the genre, and I loved that this one addressed such a unique, underrepresented subject matter. Through it, Summers explores the shift or challenge to her identity that she experienced when she decided to get pregnant as a butch lesbian, and was confronted with the extreme "feminization" of all things pregnancy. She refused to wear traditional maternity clothes and found, surprisingly, that being "bigger" because of pregnancy actually allowed her in some i ...more
Skye Kilaen
May 30, 2015 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: 0-graphic-novels
When self-proclaimed butch dyke Teek and her partner Vee decide it's baby-having time, they have NO idea what they're in for. The usual pregnant-woman physical complaints, plus a whole different level of identity issues for Teek. I laughed at the comment in the Acknowledgements that "straight women want to read something other than dreck about pregnancy too." While I'm not straight, I completely agree that even gals who have babies in the most traditional way don't necessarily want sunshine and ...more
Apr 09, 2014 rated it it was amazing
I fucking loved this book, more than all the hetero memoirs of pregnancy I've ever read. I'm pretty far from butch but the queer pregnant experience is so very. This meant a lot to me.

The book is funny, well-paced and interesting. It's introspective but never irritating. I loved it.
My review is up on as of 4/01/14:
Jan 19, 2016 rated it did not like it
I was torn between a 2 star and the final 1 star on rating this. The humor was so bad and the artwork too. This was such a struggle to finish, and yes it was another goodreads recommendation.
Kris Dersch
Having read both this book and its goodreads reviews, I worried that I couldn't like it as much as I do and that there are issues going on with this book that I as someone who isn't a member of the LGBTQ community can't understand. Here's where I landed:
When a memoir comes from a person who is not part of the majority, we expect it to speak for everyone in that group and get unreasonably mad at it when it doesn't.
A pregnant straight woman would not have the same expectations on her memoir. She c
Jan 26, 2021 rated it it was ok
Weird transphobic dip in the middle couched in being an "old curmudgeon butch" and especially sad because so much conversation about identity/gender perception ("butchness") and what amounts to some bit of dysphoria makes it seem this person has internalized transphobia - bummer all around! Some beautiful nuggets of insight into pregnancy otherwise. ...more
Rebecca Kiefer
Instead of a memoir about the less common experience of being butch and pregnant, this was a memoir of being miserable and pregnant, while just so happening to be butch. Summers’s complaints rarely venture into the challenges of gender nonconformity and are generally things any pregnant person would complain about. I really feel for her partner - Summers insists on using her egg in the pregnancy because of her complicated feelings around her own adoption and then constantly dumps on her partner ...more
Bonnie Tesch
Feb 03, 2015 rated it really liked it
Shelves: lgbtq, feminist, pregnancy
This book was hilarious. As a word of caution, it's also super potty-mouthed. Even though it is not 2003, I don't live in NYC, and I am neither lesbian nor masculine, I felt like I identified well with the narrator. In fact, I felt like I identified much better with her and this book then with a lot of the more common pregnancy materials (cough cough What to Expect cough cough). There is a lot of focus on what pregnancy does to your self-image--not in a positive or negative way, but how it chang ...more
Apr 17, 2014 rated it it was amazing
I honestly wish I had given every book on here FOUR stars, so I could give THIS ONE five! It's my new favorite book. From the Tintin nods to the deep investigation of identity, presentation, gender and sexuality from the 70s until today. And lots of important birthing information, as well. And OMG the panels on the pain. Oh, honey. ...more
Courtney Moss
Apr 06, 2019 rated it did not like it
I was really excited to read this because it's an important perspective (most pregnancy books are heterocentric), but then I got to the "And More Tests" section where she goes onto an unfortunate tangent about transgender people. I wanted to give her the benefit of the doubt here, hope she came around on the topic, but ultimately it is what is - transphobic. Huge bummer. ...more
Nay Keppler
Jan 06, 2018 rated it really liked it
Pretty funny. Answers a lot of questions I didn’t even realize I had about what the experience would be like. My only complaint was the hardass midwife being nicknamed “librarian.” Come on, AK, know your audience.
This was funny and insightful, even though I didn't feel particularly attached to the art style. ...more
Stacey Kay
Jul 29, 2020 rated it really liked it
Shelves: 2020
I really appreciated this graphic novel. I don’t have a body that would be conducive to a safe* pregnancy, but even if that weren’t an issue I’ve never felt like I’d want to go through the process. I’ve always felt alienated from most ~women’s content~ because I haven’t ever seen a disabled body like mine portrayed in any of the typical scenarios other women see depicted.

After reading this, I actually appreciate the idea of being pregnant more. Pregnancy is rarely described or discussed in ways
Jan 25, 2021 added it
Shelves: own, my-queer-library
this was a funny and thought-provoking read with a wonderful illustration style. it felt like a story about a very specific time (2004-05), but also a lot of the author's experience is definitely still relevant today. so it was interesting to read about the author's life in the early 2000s and how things have changed and not changed since then.
as other reviewers mentioned, there is some transphobic stuff in the middle of the book which is unfortunate. in the intro of the 2013 edition, the author
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A.K. Summers is the creator of the comic zine Negativa, and the animated shorts Topless Dickless Clueless and World Without Femmes. She is a graduate of Oberlin College and the School of the Art Institute of Chicago. Summers lives with her partner and son in Providence, Rhode Island. Pregnant Butch is her first graphic novel. ...more

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