Saturday, January 2, 2021

A Caricature?

 From disabled transgender poet Torrin A Greathouse:

"If we're not feminine enough, that is a failure. But if trans women are too feminine, that is also seen as a flaw. It is seen as a caricature of womanhood."

Where does that statement leave you? For me, it brings back memories of obsessing over every aspect of my feminine presentation. In fact, I have often written about the differences between my early posts here in Cyrsti's Condo as compared to my current offerings. Nearly all of the decade old posts have a definite  bias on every aspect of what I was wearing.  Perhaps I was presenting as too feminine and maybe I was a caricature myself. 

Of course time changes all of us and I was changed by the cis women I interacted with.  They brought a different feel to their femininity and one I happened to identify with.  All of a sudden finding exactly the correct accessory to wear when I met them wasn't the priority, communicating with them and the world became a real goal. I guess you could call it acceptance over accessories. Through it all, I was able to observe how they interacted with the world and my small tight-knit circle of friends ushered in my unique personal womanhood. 

In other words, I was able to escape the "caricature" mold Greathouse writes about by capturing what being a woman meant to me. Obviously there were surprises along the way. 

Overall though, I changed and was able to finally thrive. In no small deal thanks to all of them. 

They showed me the way out of the clothes into the real world and gave me confidence to live the life I had always dreamed of living. 

If you would want to read more of the "NPR" post with Torrin Greathouse, follow the link above. 


  1. I've long held the theory that many trans women express their femininity, at least early on in their trans lives, based on what the male side of themselves find attractive. I'm not referring to autogynephilia, as this attraction is not necessarily sexual in nature. It may have something to do with separating one's female self from the male self, as well. That is, just as a trans woman may overcompensate to affect a more masculine facade while living in male-mode, she may overcompensate in her (idea of) femininity when in female-mode. That's may seem like bouncing from one caricature to the other, and, for me, was just not sustainable.

  2. I believe we go through a concentrated growing up process, those of us who transition later in life miss out on a female adolescence, we don't have benefit of either contemporaries or older women teaching us how to be women. we could observe from outside, we could watch but were never part of the sisterhood. In consequence we had a steep learning curve, I know I personally made many a teenage mistake, inappropriate hemlines, poor makeup, inappropriate personal interactions, all girls do the difference is I had to make these learning mistakes in my 50s! It can be a little embarrassing looking back on my early blog posts, the emphasis on clothes and makeup, all the photos but it is part of my process, part of my growing up, part of my history.