On my to study for just another Saturday morning in my local coffee place, I was listening to a podcast (as I am tend to do) about transgender topics, news, science, etc. On this podcast they reported that they, the world of geneticists and other since kind of people, found genetic marks that show that being transgender is as genetically linked as being red haired or tall or short. My first reaction was “Wow! That is great! I can prove once and for all that I am really who I am!” This was quickly followed by a few other thoughts that were not as joyous. The first was me wonder who these people were that I felt that I needed to prove myself and my identity too. The second was even worse. What if I get my genetics tested and found that these newly discovered markers are absent? What would that mean? Would that mean that I am not really trans? Would that mean that I am just so dude in a dress that much of the Cis world see me and my other trans siblings as already? What if I am just trying to hide for something so that is why I have decided that this is the path that I am to walk? (Oh hello existential dread! WELCOME and come sit by me!)
Well Shit! Now that I have opened this Pandora’s box of shit, lets at least try to unpack it a bit. So, what is “being trans” really? Is it something that we choose or something that we have chose for us through genetics? Is it something that can me over come or something that just needs to be processed and accepted by those who experience it? If there is a genetic component to it all, is this something that can be screened for at an early age or even in the womb? If so what dose that mean for those who “pop positive” for being trans? Will this open up a whole new world of bioengineering and gene manipulation to “correct the problem?” Is it enough to just say that you are trans because the infinite reasons you fell it without the accompany science that may now come with it?
Deep breathe in, and out! I am going to jump around a bit for this part. I will go slowly in order to not loose anyone. There is a think that is called imposter syndrome. If you have ever been in a new job, with new people or in a new situation that felt that would have no idea what is going on and if anyone else finds our how you actually are clueless at what the heck is going on, they will see you as the fraud that you feel that you are. This is a very simple explanation of the Imposter syndrome. These feeling will usually pass as you become more comfortable and accustomed to the new situations that you are in. These feelings are very common in the trans community. I know that I deal with them on not a daily basis but hourly, and often, even minuet by minute.
It is because of these feelings that the idea of being able to test our genetics for being trans both excites and terrifies me. I am constantly rattled with thoughts that I am just a fraud and not even trans (or trans enough) so much that it is often like the hum of distant highways. Anywhere in our country, save a VERY few places, there is no place you can be without hearing a high way or road. Try it sometime. Go to a place that you feel is secluded and extremely far out and jus listen. You will hear the road.
As for the screening portion of the question rant, I know that with science, it can be either used for good or evil. No matter what is done to prevent it, people will use the science to back whatever position they have. All we, as people, can do is try to work to see that the most people are protected.
So, now let us look at the biggest question of the group. What is it to be trans? What does it mean to be trans? I am sorry, my dear reader, I can not (and will not) answer that question. I know it kind of feels like a bullshit answer or response. The thing is that it is the most honest one that I can give. If you ask 100 trans people what it means to be trans you will get 101 different answers. I can tell you what it means TO ME to me trans but I will not be able to tell you what it means for a very close trans sister of mine to me trans. Sure there may be a few very roughly linked themes but never 100% the same. For me, it is finally being able to feel that I am right in my own head. It is feeling that I am coming into my own as the person I should have been and should be, even when I did not know that person even existed for the better part of 30 years. I am not the kind of trans person that knew for sure when they were 3 years old that they were trans. I just knew that I never felt that I really fit. It was not until my late teens and early 20’s that I would even think that being trans MIGHT be a thing. Back then I came across a MtF IRC (internet relay chat) channel that I started talking in and thought, “I can not be this because I am to large and would not be real woman.” So I pushed it out of my head. That is where I first got the idea that there were words that might explain these feeling I felt.
Even this response opens up other question and “truths” Like, Why should I feel like I need to fit the Western standers of (unrealistic) beauty? I could not have to. I should not have to be seen as a cis female to feel valid. I should not have to wear an hours worth of makeup to be seen as the person I know I am. I should not have to get surgery to been viewed as the person I know that I am. I should not be missgendered worse when I wear my jeans then I do when I dress high fem. Of course I should not have to do any of those things, but here in this world I kind of do. Yes is not fair. Yes it is wrong. Yes I know that I should not “have” to pass to be valid, but I know that I do. In this world we all have to live with those things that we should have to do but still do until there is a paradigm shift. People of Color should not have to worry that they will be gunned down for speeding, but they do. Woman should not have to worry that the person behind her on her walk home might attack her and killer her or worse, but she does. A child should not have to worry that they might not get to eat during a weekend because they only get food from the free lunch program at school during the week, but some still do. I am just a realist. I know that the world should change and that it is changing, albeit slowly.
So, That was 1200 words of random thought. Thank you, my amazing reader, for making it this far. On to more light hearted topics. I am going to be restarting my go-fund-me in the next few weeks. This will be open-ended and no real upper limit or goal in mind. I will be using the funds raised by it to help with costs of transition that are not covered by my medical insurance. These will include cosmetic procedures link FFS (Facial Feminization Surgery) Breast Augmentation, Body Contouring and possibly Vocal Reconstruction Surgery. I will be setting up a Google Doc that will show how every penny is spent so that you will know that I am not just taking your hard earned $$ and running. Please do not feel forced into donating if you are not able to. That is not my goal. If you are not able to help with $$$, please tell people about this blog. The more readers I have, the more people can read my ramblings and maybe feel the call to help out with their $$.
So I will say THANK YOU ALL FOR ALL THAT YOU HAVE DONE BY READING THESE POSTS!!! I love you all and will keep trying to post more often.