On what we are not
I am a trans woman.
I am not a man. I was not a boy. Those are things you thought of me, that you think you were right about, not truths or facts that you can attest. WHen you say those things about me, it is you who are lying.
I am not a mistake. God did not make a mistake in making me. God did not make me this way as an error, or a mistake. He made me this way because God has reasons that it is our job and task and purpose to figure out.
I am satisfied with how God made me — He made me a trans person. He gave me the challenge to grow, to be authentic, to have to resist an entire world of people trying to tell me I am something I was not because God does things like that. Who are you to question the will of God when His will is manifest in the world around you?
I am not ill, or sick. I do not have a mental illness or defect that makes a trans person. Moreso, that isn’t just a matter of belief — the consensus of the world’s leading experts makes it rather clear:
The expression of gender characteristics, including identities, that are not stereotypically associated with one’s assigned sex at birth is a common and culturally-diverse human phenomenon which should not be judged as inherently pathological or negative. The psychopathologlisation of gender characteristics and identities reinforces or can prompt stigma, making prejudice and discrimination more likely, rendering transgender and transsexual people more vulnerable to social and legal marginalisation and exclusion, and increasing risks to mental and physical well-being. WPATH urges governmental and medical professional organizations to review their policies and practices to eliminate stigma toward gender-variant people
involving, caused by, or of the nature of a physical or mental disease.
caused by or involving disease; morbid.
caused by or evidencing a mentally disturbed condition
dealing with diseases
1680s, “pertaining to disease,” formed in English from pathology.
Synonyms: morbid, diseased, sick, ill, unhealthy, aberrant, medical, medical condition
So when you say that I am sick, or diseased, or such, you are, literally, lying.
I am in my 50’s now. Would that I could be youthful once more and have a chance at carrying a child myself! I would embrace that as I embraced being a wife and a housewife and a woman and a mother and a grandmother.
Which might shock you to read. I understand that — it shocks me too! How did I become so blessed — so given to grace — that I could have such amazing children and grandchildren as those I do have?
Oh, yeah, that’s right — God did that, didn’t He?
I would not give up the children and grandchildren I have for that chance, mind you. That joy now belongs to a later generation, and there will be many later generations, just as there have been for thousands of years.
If you, like me, are of a more acknowledging outlook, you might think I should reference only trans people as we understand them today, when I reference history.
In which case I will note that we have been around for over 150 years. Known about. Studied Poked and prodded and experimented on.
The computer chip that enables you to read these words — the one on my laptop, on your computer, ipad, phone, etc — operates thanks to something called an instruction set. Without it, there would be no Apple or Microsoft or Google.
Trans woman did that.
Those x-rays you get, those amazing things that inspired doctors to come up with other tools to do the same thing, which is diagnose you, they were pioneered by a trans man.
Two things that have changed your life, personally, and you owe them to trans people. That is to just name a couple.
We, collectively, are not perverts. The vast majority of us are ashamed of our bodies because you tell us to be, and we don’t even like to be seen naked by our own selves, going to lengths to avoid it even when doing simple things like taking a shower.
Or using a toilet.
Some of us cannot put razor to skin — be it leg or arm or face — without sobbing. Others of us cannot simply get dressed without having emotional episodes of the kind that if it were your child having such, you would be heartbroken
The surgeries we go through are not extreme body modification. I know you think of them that way. I hear you say it, I read it on posts. Unless you think of hearing implants as extreme body modification. Or performing surgeries in order to prevent cancer from spreading. Or hysterectomies and such.
If you think those are all extreme body modifications, then by all means, you can keep on thinking it. Though I feel for you as a result.
It takes a doctor five to eight hours to perform just one of the procedures. To some, that might seem awful short given the nine months they have to carry a fetus.
But before that 5 to 8 hours is a lifetime of carrying around a person that just to survive in this world is often buried and hidden unless you are lucky enough to have parents who are knowledgeable and intelligent and caring enough to allow you to be yourself at a young age — and then you have to deal with questions about your future long before anyone who is not trans ever does.
Some have said we can change a sex but we can’t cure cancer? That’s a good point, since both things would save the lives of a lot of people. My husband would have been saved by a cure for cancer.
Interestingly enough, this sex change isn’t perfect, and is, at best, a stop gap. Like chemotherapy. Or Radiation. It does its best to slow what is otherwise a really messed up thing and let the person have a little more of that thing God gave them: Life.
A life with Grace. Which is why so few of you ever hear about the majority of trans people.
Many of you will mock us and laugh at us and deride us and then go home and call out or pull up or in some way try to get some sort of sexual imagery involving us. We know this because often, it is the only way a lot of us can ever make a living — and boy, do ya’ll pay well for it.
But most of us never have a thing to do with that. Like me, we just live our daily lives. Sometimes those lives play out on a larger scale — Caitlin comes to mind here.
Far, far more than that never even get noticed by you.
We have been using restrooms for a hundred and fifty years and never had a problem. Except for people who say things like we shouldn’t change what God gave us, even though God is the one who made us to change.
We are harbingers. In many other cultures throughout history and place, we have been priests and revered figures — because, trust me, being yourself when you have people trying to stop you from going potty and saying they will shoot you takes a lot of courage and strength and fortitude.
The word professionals in the social sciences — such as myself — use is Resilience. The ability to recover from something and keep going. Perhaps you can think of a few times when people have talked to you, in your life, about that.
That stick to it stuff. That perseverance. That outright stubborn refusal.
Like that group of men who started a nation called the United States today.
A nation founded on the idea that all of us have something to give to everyone else, and that as a result, none of us should be denied our pursuit of happiness, our chance to build and live a great life.
I know you don’t understand what it means to be trans. If you ever want someone to teach you, let me know, and I will come and do my best.
But I can say that I am not wrong. That I am not broken. That I am not trapped or that I think there is something wrong with me, that I am not mentally ill to be trans, that I am not those things you fear.
I am, in the end, just one little gal.
But I challenge your world.