trans people who tell other trans people they aren’t masculine/feminine enough
this has been buggin me
also -same goes for what my genitals are. its not “what i think i am” or “what i think they are” its what i fucking am and what they fucking are
Read if you like. I don’t care.
I have become increasingly frustrated with a book I have been reading called I Am J, written about the transgender experience. For this reason: it is obvious that this book was written by someone who has never experienced gender dysphoria. While I give kudos to the writer for the attempt, I would like to disclose what it feels like to be transgender for me. Without attention-seeking gimmicks.
To say that I am a man trapped in a woman’s body is laughable. A childish attempt to explain something so alien to most.
I do not exist.
I watch the actions of a girl named Cassie, vapidly aware that I am pulling the strings, but equally conscious that I am not in control.
That which does not exist does not speak. It does not reason. It cannot relate. It knows nothing of the views of those who had childhoods. Of those who had parents. You argue that I did indeed have parents. Oh really? Please explain that fact to them, if you believe it. They are still of the opinion that they have a daughter named Cassie who they miss very much and wish would come back.
I would like to issue an apology to these poor people, who seem very nice and very confused. Your daughter is never coming back. I stole her life, her friends, her memories. Completely an accident on my part, and I would love to rectify the situation if I could.
Please give my condolences to her disappointed relatives.
That which does not exist has no memories. Truly, I can barely report to you where I have been, but only narrate the views that other place upon her. I am sure, if she knew, she would be agast at the invasion of privacy.
I find, these days, I can attest to the fact that all emotions are a challenge to form clearly but one. Hate is my strongest element. Hate is the most powerful truth I know. Hate for a world and a people that has no place for me. Deep down, I want to watch it burn. I want to watch it burn, and when it does, I want to ask them what it feels like to lose your existence. How it feels to lose control. Oh, but they’ll never know the lack of having the experience of existence in the first place. How silly of me.
Does the tree make a sound when none are around? In the same frame, that which is not seen does not exist, that which is not spoken of is not of importance or merit.
And do also say sorry to my past significant others, who wondered why in the world I was not turned on to their satisfaction. Well, I’m sorry, but my penis took the day off, and my erection went with it. Jokes aside, the deepness of the loss of a treasured, albeit animal, part of your psych is one that cannot be described. I have heard of the mysterious “phantom penis”, and I can attest that the ability to feel that which cannot be seen is made more unbearable by the jeers of those who cannot understand.
To them, Cassie is a minority and I am an illness. What they fail to realize is that the part of Cassie that doesn’t exist is a sore, fragile core part of me. When they laugh, when they throw the “issue” away like a towel, their contempt reverberates against the core of who I am. Like a baby who never got to grow up.
But this concept is foreign. Therefore it is outrageous. It is not “like” I don’t exist. This transgender experience is so unlike anything else i have read about or heard of, though the closest may be the imaginary friend, or the toys that move when no one watches.
That is what the “minority experience” has been like for me. So I hope you damn writers out there who want to create “trans*” characters are taking notes.
Wonderful :) want this for my girls :) x
THIS is how trans* education starts. With OUR kids showing them that we are ok, we are well, we are beautiful and we are moving towards happy. Then they spread that knowledge in an organic way.
BRILLIANT & ESSENTIAL!
Now we need transmale and non binary versions to make the full set then get them published into one of those mini book box sets x
“Masho”. It’s Japanese.
It’s 4 inches long and looks pretty good. Better than Mr Limpy, and supposedly it is better.
It looks nice but.. The colors are bugging me. Why bubblegum pink? Why is the more realistic color for light skinned people?
I don’t quite get why they made it in pink though. The Limpy is supposed to be a gag toy but this is meant for trans guys; most people aren’t bubblegum pink.
Does anyone have a link to where people can look at this? It’s hella cute for a fake penis. Most packers just have a generic “dick” shape but this is actually really neat. I just feel like I’d play with it all the time |D
This piece is a response that I wrote in the days following a post that appeared here that included clothed and naked pictures of myself and other transgender people in my community without our consent as models. My intention is to share how these actions and the snowball effect that can occur on the internet as a result have directly affected me and people close to me. The issues that arise from this situation feel relevant to address by opening community dialogue and asking for accountability in a venue (the internet) that so often fosters reactionary, faceless responses to sensitive topics that affect real people’s lives.
About six years ago, I was one of a number of transgender folks in my town who modeled, clothed and naked, for a photo shoot that my friend was doing for a class project in art school. The artist communicated to us that these photos were explicitly only for use in this school project. A few years ago this friend showed this series of photos to a cisgender gay male friend who felt really moved by them. This friend asked for digital copies and promised they would only be for personal viewing. Somehow a miscommunication happened and he misunderstood the private and confidential nature of this photo series.
Last week, the friend who had been gifted these photos for private viewing posted about six or seven of the images on his tumblr account, claiming that he thought only close friends would be able to view them. They were, in fact, publicly viewable and within 48 hours the series had “gone viral”, accumulating thousands of hits, being reposted on various trans websites and personal blogs, gathering litanies of comments on each picture.
A couple days ago, my friend who did the original project contacted me to let me know that this had happened. She said that she planned to talk to each of the models to let them know that their images were now irretractably all over the internet. My initial reaction was one of patience; I asked her how she was feeling about the situation. I told her that there are already pornographic images of me online to which I consented and was paid for, so I was more concerned for the safety and feelings of some of the other models who are less “out” or public about their trans identities.
Several folks in our community, some of whom were in the series and some of whom were not, were pretty upset that these images had been publicly posted without the models’ consent. Several people brought their concerns to the photographer’s attention. A series of conversations happened with a number of different people before she seemed to gain an understanding of the importance of taking these images down from the original posting, even if they were indeed dispersed all over the web by now. She did contact the original poster, her friend, a few days ago and he has taken the original posting down. His partner offered a public apology on his behalf. My friend who took the pictures and the person who was responsible for posting them issued private apoloies to the models who were involved about a week after the original posting. No public apology or attempt to open dialogue within the communities that have been affected by these actions has been provided by either party to the best of my knowledge.
What do our bodies mean as trans people when they become a part of art? When our images are released into the world as a tool for someone else’s educational or artistic campaign without our consent, what does that imply about our humanness? Are our bodies merely a means to educate non-trans people about our existence? Would the reaction be different if the same thing had happened between a cisgender male photographer and female models who had not consented to have their images released beyond a specific context? How can we, as communities working toward a culture of consent, create productive and compassionate dialogue around these issues?
Puzzling over the relationship of my naked trans body and the public and the choices I’ve made to reveal myself, a realization has surfaced for me…seeing those images posted online with lines and lines of comments beneath them, most of them objectifying me to a sexual object or a specimen of scientific curiosity, leaves me feeling like I did doing sex work. I have been in the back a room full of queers viewing a porn I was in, on a big screen, and hearing the comments fly about my body, my sexuality, my gender. First introductions have happened in which a spark of recognition in someone’s eye has been followed by, “Ohhhh…I know where I know you from! You were in that super hot queer porn!” For me, part of the transaction of sex work is acknowledging that we live in a system that values the objectification of bodies and sexual acts and I am making an agreement to be a part of that interaction because I am gaining something that makes it worth it for me (i.e. money, visibility, self-affirmation for my identity or desirability, etc.) The difference this time is, I didn’t get paid for this work. And no one asked me if I was willing to enter into this agreement.
I chose to be on screen in queer porn because at the time I believed the low pay was balanced by the need for positive, sexy portrayals of transguys to help show the world that 1) we exist 2) we have all different kinds of sexualities and 3) we’re actually really attractive in whatever bodies we find ourselves in, should we choose to alter them or not. I’m not sure that I would make the same choices in the current context of my own life and the trans and queer movements at large, but I don’t regret what made a whole lot of sense to me at the time. Making those films and images felt like a radical act because I was choosing to share my body and my sexuality to the camera in a way I believed would create change in the world.
And create change it has. All of this work we have been doing over the years has shifted our culture. I am often bemused at feeling already, at the ripe young age of 31, like a trans elder in my community. (I came out as trans fourteen years ago.) There has been a burgeoning, a flood of information shared, through films, porn, blogs, websites, performance art, writing and protest over the last decade and a half that has facilitated a massive cultural shift in the U.S. and elsewhere. Now within the relative safety of many urban areas, we can find hoards of young trans folks enthusiastic about their transition options (or opting out), seeing reflections of ourselves (positive and negative) in various forms of media, finding online or urban support groups, even dating websites that accommodate our gender diversity. I am deeply grateful to all of my gender-bending elders and ancestors who made it possible for us to do the work we have needed to do, and I am proud to be part of creating space for the deluge of awareness and comfortability that has coalesced.
But I realize in this moment how very far we have yet to go. Because I am still being viewed as an object. My image and my existence cannot be used as a consciousness-raising tool for anyone else’s agenda without my consent. And this isn’t just about interactions with trans people, or women, or people of color, or indigenous people, or differently-abled folks, or fat folks or any of our relations with four legs or fins or wings. It’s about all of us. It’s about our relationships. It’s about comprehending that we are inextricably tied to each other and even if we believe that our intentions are noble, our actions ripple out from us and affect the world in ways that we couldn’t possibly imagine. We are constantly creating and re-creating the fabric of our lives and our culture, I have witnessed this already in my short lifetime. This is a call for deep accountability for our actions. We are powerful beyond our dreams. Let’s take care with each other, because it’s up to us to turn this world around from the power-hungry angry machine that is eating up our lives and our families and the earth. We are all subjects here, we are all related. Let’s start acting like it.
NAKED ZEPH UNDER THE CUT.
You have been warned.
Also, this is kind of some heavy shit.
I’m coming out.
And, like, stepping waaaaaaaay out of my comfort zone.
So, please be kind.
Wow, that’s a very inspirational story. We have a lot of the same experiences, as guys in our situation tend to, though I’m ashamed to say I was usually the manipulative and abusive one in relationships (be it friendship or romantic). I actually just broke off a friendship with someone I really loved a few days ago because we weren’t able to move past how I treated them a few months ago. It went really well, but I still feel horrible for how I acted during the worst of my mental illness this year.
And yeah, I totally hear you on the dermatilomania (that’s the name for it, BTW. It’s a common thing). I used to have trichotilomania when I was really little, and even though I had half a head of hair, I couldn’t stop, and I would go up to my mother screaming and crying because I couldn’t stop and I hated it. I had to wear a stupid bandana so people at the store didn’t think I had cancer and look at my mum and I with pity. My trich habit got me falsely diagnosed with OCD, but that ended up not being such a bad thing. With skin picking, people often just bother healthy skin until it makes a new mark. I have pretty bad acne on my back, but that’s more because I sleep in the same shirt I wore during the day and don’t wash my sheets as much as I should >.<;; (Pyro is gross, just so you guys know!)
I like how you didn’t add in something about loving your body, because so many guys think they HAVE to love their body or something if they want to be happy. But no, you don’t. Accepting your body is enough, and when you get to a point where you can do that, everything will get easier.
As far as your struggles go, take it a day, or even an hour, at a time. Don’t quit picking; just quit picking for an hour. And then repeat that - “I’m just doing this for an hour” - the next hour. You don’t need to deal with and fight and overcome this loathing of your body your whole life - just do it for today. And when you get up tomorrow, repeat that action for another day. It really helps to think that way.
Your happy ending is really inspirational and I’m reblogging this in hopes that some people still struggling in the early stages will find hope, too.
I always hear cis men talk about how okay they would be if they gained breasts and cis women talk about how neat it would be to have a penis.
Uh huh… I wonder if they would really think that.
Plenty of cis people want to have/would be okay with different sex organs. I know tons of women who want to have dicks. It’s perfectly valid for them to feel that way, but it’s in NO WAY an argument against trans* identities, and most people saying as much don’t consider the very permanent and scary social repercussions of having body parts that don’t match your gender identity.