Posts Tagged ‘male to female’

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A Place to Stand?

28 March, 2013

This is difficult to say, i really don’t think there are words that accurately reflect the depth of my emotions on the subject or the pain i feel when acknowledging the issues involved. After a lot of time and consideration i have come the conclusion that i cannot participate in the trans* communities and support groups in my area because there is not a space for me. When i go, i feel i don’t really fit in or belong with members of the groups. It is not an issue of “being trans enough” (though that is a very real discrimination some trans* identified individuals face). Instead, it is an issue of whether i belong in attendance.

i had a group i attended regularly for a year and a half. There are good people in that group, but i don’t belong in their space. They are college-aged kids that are radical and experimenting and that’s not me. i felt increasing outside the acceptable attitudes of the group because i am not subversive enough. These young trans* and gender queer people call into question the ideas of a binary, cis-normative, non-kink culture through their actions, dress, and public discussion/displays of kink/sex. They are young radicals who stand against the myopic perceptions of society in a vocal, visible manner. This is good. We need groups like that. my presence in such a group, however, is inappropriate. As a woman fifteen years older than the members of the group, i am not subversive enough to be part of their community. i want to blend in, i want to go unnoticed, i want people to not question me and to not harass me. i fall into a pretty standard female role and i am okay with that; it’s who i am, but it means i don’t fit.

i attended another group on occasion. This group was the opposite of the first in both age and attitudes. It is a group of trans women in the metro area that are just trying to be themselves. i was one of the youngest members of the group, with the majority of the women being in their fifties (an age difference as great as the first group, only reversed). Most of the women in this group tend to be either post-op and stealth or pre-op and part-time. The path they walk is one of hiding and making sure that people do not under any circumstances learn who they are, ever. It is a hard road to walk, living dual lives, and keeping secrets. Ultimately, the women in this group believe every trans woman must receive surgery (not only sex affirmation surgery but also facial feminization, trachea shaves, and other “enhancements”) or she will never truly be female. i don’t fit in with these women. i do not believe every trans woman must receive surgery or she is not a woman and there were women in the group who were offended that i would not reveal if i had undergone affirmation surgery or (if i had not) if i planned on having it or any other “corrective” procedures. Though i live most of my life stealth, i reveal my history to intimate acquaintances who either should be given or would benefit from this knowledge. i walk an unusual middle ground that the others were not comfortable with; i am, ironically, too subversive for this group.

There does not seem to be a space for people like me in the community. i have not meet others who are like me and, in the end, who i am leads others to feel disappointment, discomfort, or disgust. For a community that stands outside the definitions of society, we create some very narrow definitions for our members to conform to. Not all of us can do that. Where does that leave us?

 

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Jenerated Anomaly: The Almost Person

29 December, 2011

I am nobody / who are you?     ~Emily Dickinson

I am not a person. I have not been a person for some time, if I ever was. I am human, but certainly not a person. I am an almost person. I am almost female and almost male, but not fully either. I am almost whole. I am almost normal. I am almost put together. I am almost capable. I am almost someone worthy of respect and dignity. I am almost these things and one might think I am, until you see me, really see me. Then you know. Almost.

What I am is a generated anomaly, or perhaps better phrased Jenerated anomaly. I was born into a twisted half world. Female with male anatomy. From the start I was only almost. I spent the majority of my life attempting to be a person by fitting in with my male role models. I did not do a good job of it, though some argue the imitation was perfect. Even if it was, it was still an imitation. I knew I was female, living “successfully” male and so I knew I was only almost. The only thing I had going for me is, according to others, I was an attractive male. “Why did you change?” people ask me. “Why be female when you are so good at being male?” Because, I was only almost male. I was only male by accident of anatomy and a dangerous over exposure to testosterone. It was all fake. I knew it and it killed me.

Now I am a “trans woman,” an almost woman. Just as I had spent three and half decades denying my female nature, I am now dealing with aspects of self brought about by too many years of too much testosterone and inappropriate socialization. My body has taken on too many male qualities for me to ever be accepted as female by people. I am almost. I look in the mirror and I feel the generated quality of my existence. I see the past scrambling to get free, to reassert, to make me hate myself again. To drag me back down into an almost nature that will kill me. It is called dysphoria. To know that my self and elements of my physicality do not, cannot align. To be condemned from birth to suffer extreme cognitive dissonance for my entire life, to the point where looking in mirrors or seeing my photo causes a painful dissonance that can leave me a trembling mass of almost-ness.