[In the Gender Perspectives series, I hope to curate writing by people with a wide variety of gender identities and experiences, talking about their gender, what it means to them personally, and what it means for the ways in which they move through and interact with the world. Basically, this is where I point out that I’m not the only person in the world who has complex thoughts about gender, and that there as many ways to be Trans* and/or genderqueer as there are to be cisgender (and yes, there are many different ways to be cisgender). Check out the rest of the series.]
- Sage Pantony discusses their experiences of changing privilege when going from a femme presentation to a masculine one, within their identity as a simultaneously gender-fluid/genderqueer and cisgender person.
The catcalling I used to receive from men in the streets has almost completely stopped. I didn’t expect this. In fact, I thought I would experience more sexualizing taunts and threats once I went against the norm. I’m experiencing a form of masculine privilege in that I actually feel safer when I move in public spaces now. This is interesting, as I’m pretty sure people still read me as female. Store clerks still call me “Miss” or refer to me as one of the “girls” when I’m with a group of feminine folks.
Masculinity affords certain privileges in a patriarchal culture. I believe that I’m benefiting from some of these privileges now.
- The author of “An Exacting Life”, a cisgender parent with a trans* child, contemplates her personal relationship with and experiences of gender.
I am a woman who was raised as a girl. What could be more natural?
Until I think about what a strange construct that is. I was born with certain visible body parts, and that determined how I was raised and what my future role in life would be. My culture not only supports this, but pretty much requires it. My parents carried this out unquestioningly…
- Belinda Cooper talks about being “she-zi-thee-he” genderqueer, zir intimate relationships, and dealing with the broader world.
At time you can feel like an alien not fitting into the terms and conditions of society and the humans don’t understand your language and properly never will. So you squeeze your alien self into their terms and you get used to it as it is easier, easier for your mother, father, brothers and as well as the stranger talking to you on the bus.
When they present you with a forms requesting your gender, they seem to ask a question that actually want to know. Sometimes you get lucky and there are more than two possible answers and you smile and say well done people. Other times you just feel bitter anger and frustration.
This is how ‘I’ experience life and gender.
- Sam Dylan Finch writes incredibly beautifully about dealing with his own internalized anti-trans thoughts feelings
What they don’t tell you about being transgender is that sometimes, the transphobe is you.
Those days, the only words I knew how to say were, “I’m sorry, I’m sorry, I’m sorry.”
They never tell you that being transgender can sometimes feel like a run-on string of apologies – I’m sorry for being here, I’m sorry for being this way, I’m sorry for disappointing you, I’m sorry for your expectations, and I’m sorry for mine.
- Olly from “Apparently I Don’t Exist” responds to the search term “gender fluid is utter nonsense”, which brought someone to their blog.
I don’t think they found what they were looking for.
Although privately I do agree with them; it is complete nonsense. I’m a logical creature who likes their patterns and progressions so not being able to predict where my gender identity is going to be on any given day of the week is what some people might call a nightmare. But it’s my reality.
Gender is a social construct and yet in my head I know the difference between femme days and masc days and agender days and any other kind of days. Logic tells me that the clothes I wear on my body are *my* clothes, but there are days where the thought if wearing skimpy panties rather than my pirate boxer shorts makes me want to cry.
So yeah, it is utter and complete total nonsense. But that doesn’t make it any less real.