On transitioning

August 8, 2009 at 8:50 pm 1 comment

The following is an excerpt from my journal oh, about 3 years ago, when I was still fairly early into my physical transformation from woman into man. I’m not quite as angry anymore — maybe that’s the benefit of time and aging: you mellow out. It’s curious, revisiting my own psychological trajectory. And listen, I like (some) doctors; I really do. Without them I would not have been offered a second lease on life. I like (some) people too. Sure, some are ignorant, but hey, so am I, about some things. What follows is a snapshot into my emotional past, nothing more, nothing less:

How I hate doctors. Irrational, you say? Maybe. Their smug I-know-what’s-wrong-with you-so-why-don’t-you-listen-to-me attitude. Their need to judge what they don’t understand. In that, unfortunately, they’re no different from anyone else. Only, they hold power over the well-being of your body. Screw that. My grandfather died from kidney stones. Didn’t want to go see a doctor. And he was a doctor himself. I come by my distrust honestly.

So tired of having to feel ashamed for what’s not between my legs. So tired of feeling ashamed in general, for being different. So I’m a guy in girl’s body. Well, not a guy exactly, a something, an it. Does that make me less of a person? Does that give people the right to decide what’s right for me, what’s wrong with me? And when I don’t feel ashamed, there will be someone who will feel ashamed for me, anticipating what they think I should feel. Why? Why should I be ashamed of not being like everyone else? Who gives them the right to judge me?

I can see it in their eyes, they’re thinking: you should be thoroughly ashamed of yourself. Ashamed of yourself? There’s nothing wrong with me. What’s wrong is everybody telling me that there’s something wrong with me. What if people said: hey, you have a woman’s body but clearly you are a guy, so please, go ahead, live a guy’s life? But instead they say: you think you’re a guy, do you? Hmmm, well we don’t believe you. If it’s true, then we have to see how committed you are. The only way we’ll recognize you as one is if you let us cut off your breasts and slice and dice a dick for you. Or at the very least get rid of those pesky eggs. You won’t be needing those. We need to see you suffer before we give you our societal stamp of approval. You let us do these things to you and we’ll let you wear an M on your citizenship card, on your driver’s license, and in your passport. Until then? Suffer! It’s the only way we’ll know that you’re the real deal. Not sure you want an M? But you don’t want an F? Well those are your only two choices so make up your mind. We have no time for grey areas. Bloody doctors. Bloody politicians. Bloody people.

I don’t want to hate my body. But everywhere I turn I see images of what a woman is, what a guy should be. No room for us in-betweeners. What do you want? For us to fall between the cracks? Disappear? Why are you so afraid of what you don’t understand? Is it because you don’t want to take a long, hard look at yourselves? Examine the fragility of your own identity?

Then you get the people who say: why do you have to talk about it? Why do you have to flaunt your difference in public like those pesky gays with their parades. Why should we not flaunt it? Why should only you have the right to embrace your freedom of expression?

I won’t listen to you anymore. You make me sick with your ignorance.


Entry filed under: Gender, Transgender.

my life in South Africa Bloody good, truly

1 Comment Add your own

  • 1. Ek  |  August 20, 2009 at 1:16 pm

    wonder of jy ook my antwoord op jou ooit weer gelees het…?


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