On What “feels like a woman” means
Regarding why trans people say things like:
- I have always felt like a woman
- I have always felt like a man
- I have always felt like I am not a woman or a man
- I have always felt like a woman and a man
or similar expressions of such, what they are trying to express in colloquial and layman’s terms is the concepts of sex identity and gender identity.
Now that is Two (2) concepts, each distinct, heavily conflated, because in layman’s and colloquial terms, they are readily intertwined and intermingled in actual life.
Roughly translated, the whole thing means that a Trans person is aware that they are a woman, man, both, or neither, at the same core level as they are aware of themselves as a person, distinct from other people.
Some people, primarily those who are ignorant and misinformed of what these concepts are, or who apply their own prejudice towards trans people and thereby discount 60+ years of proven science, would prefer to argue that what this is suggesting is that there is a “brain sex” — and yet, that’s not what this is describing.
It is describing a sense of self-awareness — which, while decidedly part of the brain’s physiology, is really part of the existential notion that one exists, and therefore is not part of that argument, nor even related directly to biological systems.
This is important to note, because what it means is that when someone talks to or about a trans person about this and says things like “do you mean it is about clothing, or about sexual intercourse, or about physiological process or genitals” or similar stuff, they are being fundamentally dishonest and deceitful, and displaying their ignorance and incompetence because they do not understand what the trans person is saying to them, and therefore not listening, and so are talking about something other than the actual concept being discussed.
These questions are a form of gaslighting of trans people, and seeks to corrupt and twist the words of trans people for the purpose of furthering their oppression, not proving something “true” about trans people, since they have nothing to do with the idea being expressed, which is that the trans person exists.
Furthermore, if these people do not, themselves, have the ability to say what it means to them to feel like a woman, it is incredibly difficult for them to be honestly making a judgement about someone else’s understanding of themselves.
This is like looking at a person and telling them they are actually a dog, and they know they are a dog, but not willing to admit it. Seems pretty nasty, doesn’t it?
Trans people are not immune to this – and indeed, often when pushed, trans people will resort to all manner of reactions and arguments and justifications for this because they often are no more knowledgeable about this than anyone else.
What that means, as well, is that this description has nothing whatsoever to do with biology, and therefore arguments about biology aren’t valid when contradicting it.
It would be akin to saying that the United States Army shouldn’t exist because of broccoli.
This all comes together in the core aspect here: like sexual orientation, this is part of what creates the sense of self in people, and it therefore is part of how they know that they exist as an individual human being, and is a part of that.
So the same question of how you know can be answered in as many different ways as there are people, and it is the still same way that those asking the question know what their social sex identity is.
This effectively makes it the trans version of the question “how do you know you are gay?”, with the same accurate answer of “I just do, because I know I exist.”
The answer may not satisfy those seeking some sort of concrete answer, but it is inevitable that they themselves will discount any answer because for them the same question remains unanswered in a way they would accept from a trans person, usually due to cis privilege.
So asking the question, especially in a venue such as Tumblr, is a form of logical fallacy and a trap, meant to defame and ridicule and provide justification for hate speech and violence against trans people.