Saturday, July 16, 2022

Is the Other Grass Greener?

As we follow our journeys to our authentic transgender selves, often we mistake the gender grass for cis-gender women to be greener. By "cis-gender" I mean humans who were born biological females. 

As transgender women we automatically believe the amount of feedback our cis gendered sisters helped them grow into the women they became. The subject came up in our household last night as my

Photo by Amy Shamblen on Unsplash

partner Liz tearfully recounted how the restrictions her Mother placed on her still effect her to this day. Examples include everything from not being allowed to wear makeup all the way to being discouraged from taking ballet lessons. The makeup effected her because her friends were allowed to wear it, the ballet because Liz was larger than many of the other dancers. All of this has influenced her life to this day. 

All of this happened when she read a post from a transgender woman friend of mine bemoaning the fact she never was able to experience the joys of girl hood. From makeup to frilly dresses. I know I feel the same way, specifically at Christmas when my girl cousins were so pretty and feminine in their dresses when I was stuck in a starched shirt and often a hated tie. Little did I know perhaps they didn't want to 

wear those dresses. 

Girls fighting with their Mom's I found was nothing new. In fact my daughter the other day pointed out how long she had to wait to have her ears pierced. She was blocked by my wife (her step Mother) at the time who was very conservative. Her views on makeup and clothes led to many fights between us and I don't think she ever approved of how I looked. Since she has since passed away, I will never find out. I can only say I did try my best to dress down on all the occasions I went out with her, except the parties in Columbus we went to when I knew I would be competing with other over dressed cross dressers or transgender women. Ironically, even she would tell me stories how she fought with her Mom on what she would be wearing to school.

As I look back, I am sure I could have benefited from makeup help from my peer group of girls if I had been fortunate enough to have gone through it. However I do know my Mom was very strong willed and would have fought me tooth and nail on my appearance. Little did she ever know in my youngest years, I did my best to copy her makeup habits and apply it to the clothes I managed to accumulate which matched what other girls my age were wearing. 

All these years later I still remember the shame I felt from just wanting so much to be a girl. It wasn't till much later when I began to live fulltime as a transgender woman did I discover the gender grass wasn't always greener. Surely I would have preferred a girl's childhood to the one I had but I am sure it all wouldn't have been sweetness and light. Plus I am certain as females grow into women they end up leading more complex and difficult lives than men.

Even though I feel the gender grass is not always greener, I wouldn't trade my journey into feminine pastures for the world. 

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