I just spent roughly 15 or 20 minutes slogging through the Internet rabbit hole of hate-mongering and vitriol. Now that I’ve climbed out of it and wiped off the slime, I wanted to assert that there is a lot of garbage online that is nothing but hate-filled bigotry. People who have no idea what they’re talking about sure love to talk about it anyway!
As a transgender person who has been aware of her feelings and identity for most of her life, I posit that transgenderism is real and that choosing to transition—thereby presenting my true identity to the world—can be and is helpful. Many haters online argue that transgender women are just men who want to be considered women, and that it’s not normal for a man to want to be a woman. These are people who clearly can’t get past labeling a person solely based on their physical appearance. We all know what kind of trouble this has gotten humanity into in the past.
Just a few months ago, an Oklahoma politician who voted for an anti-transgender bill was charged with committing crimes related to child prostitution. I find it interesting that people like that consider themselves experts on “normal.”
There are also people out there who at one point in life thought they were transgender and then regretted undergoing sexual reassignment surgery later on in life. This reality exists. Not all people who elect SRS are happy afterward. Some end up regretting this irreversible change. On the other side of the coin are countless stories of people whose lives greatly improve after SRS. Additionally, not all trans women opt for surgery of any kind—be it sexual reassignment surgery, breast augmentation, or any number of facial feminization surgeries.
Funny how almost every piece of anti-transgender rhetoric limits “transgender” to strictly male-to-female, feminine-identifying trans women. Transgender is a wide spectrum of identity types with MTF feminine trans women being just a dot along the array. We have become the face of the enemy in a fight to keep maleness and masculinity at the top of the food chain. Somehow, trans women—along with crossdressers and drag artists—threaten those men who are transphobic and/or homophobic and most likely struggle themselves with their own understandings of their masculinities and gender identities. We strike a tender nerve in the spine of classic oppositional sexism.
Anytime an opponent of something wishes to build what they believe is a strong argument, they tend to commit the same fallacy: They only site cases that support their point and discount cases that would disprove it. Unfortunately, too many people who find arguments like these online are too willing to stop reading when they find the page that supports what they believe. From there, nothing else seems to get through. Let’s not be this kind of reader. If you believe you are transgender, you need to take your pursuit of confirming or repudiating that belief seriously. This is why I cannot go out tomorrow and have sexual reassignment surgery.
I believe it’s extremely important to explore one’s identity before making decisions that may lead to irreversible changes. I only want to make those kinds of decisions when I’m as sure as I can be that those irreversible changes are best for my social, spiritual, psychological and emotional health and future. We’re not going to get anywhere if we treat this like a black and white issue. To wit, it’s wrong to think that all SRS patients will regret having surgery or all SRS patients’ psychological issues will melt away after surgery. If we could simply explain life with nothing but ones and zeroes, there would be no more use for humanity. Machines would have taken over the world by now.
For anyone who believes it’s foolish for me to want to be considered a woman, I’m sorry you feel that way. The only person who matters in that dynamic is me, and I know I’m a woman.