Showing posts with label gender queer. Show all posts
Showing posts with label gender queer. Show all posts

Sunday, January 29, 2023

One Trans Girl to go Please

Photo from the Jessie Hart
Archive

Going out to be alone was one of my favorite phrases when I first started to explore a brave new world as a transgender woman. Another look at it would mean I was desperately lonely and just needed a release from being at home all alone. Along the way, I had discovered several venues I could go to without the chance of being harassed.  Outside of one notable exception, I was usually left to my own without any bother. Since I normally consumed quite a bit of beer, having a women's restroom pass was important. In several venues, I did experience push back from the management due primarily to complaints from other customers. I became so good of a regular at one place, after I was asked to leave one night by a manager, the crew found me at a nearby venue and asked me to come back. That was the infamous evening when a group of drunks kept playing "Dude Looks Like a Lady" on the juke box. Even then I was determined I would attempt to ride out the hassles until I was asked to leave. I got my revenge later when I found the manager who asked me to leave was fired for drug abuse. 

As I began to go out in the public's eye more and more, I did realize I was under some sort of threat being a single woman at a bar. As I continued to try to present as an attractive woman I found I had a couple things going for me. First, I discovered I was watched over by several of the bartenders I visited on a regular basis. When I was approached by the occasional drunk guy, the bartenders would warn me with a glance and kept him moving.  Another trick I learned was always using my cell phone as a crutch. I would act like I was texting someone else and expecting another visitor. That way I could explain to unwanted visitors I wasn't going to be alone much longer. 

Finally, "One trans girl to go" began to change. In a moment of brilliance, one of my bar tender friends set me up to meet her single mother who identified as a lesbian. Then, not too long after that I happened to be sitting alone one night when another woman slid a message down the bar to me. Not to let a golden opportunity go by, I quickly responded by introducing myself. It turned out she also identified as a lesbian and before long the three of us bonded over several mutual interests such as sports and drinking. For all intents and purposes from then on one transgender girl disappeared into a much needed small group of three. I learned so much from them I can't begin to list them all. All of a sudden I was even being invited to lesbian mixers which even led to one evening I was asked to approach another participant for a date...for my friend. I was a failure, because my friend didn't get her date but I tried. 

Also, as you may recall from a previous post, it was about this time when I met another circle of women who I called my second circle. It was through this circle I met Liz approximately twelve years ago. Our first date was a drag show and after being together for eleven years we decided to get married last October. Even though it's been years since my "One transgender girl", I still and probably always will remember all the intensely lonely days I had to go through. I even tried on line dating. Which predictably went badly in so many ways. I encountered my share of crazies before I ran into Liz who lived relatively close to me in Cincinnati, Ohio. We began to correspond more and more on line before I had the courage build up to let her hear my voice. She wasn't scared off and the rest as they say was history.    

Tuesday, January 3, 2023

Home to see The Parents

From the Jessie Hart
Archives

Way back when I was seriously considering dating men as I gender transitioned into a transgender woman, I was stood up (or gaslighted) by approximately half of the men who told me they were going to meet me. One of my requirements was we meet in a public setting of my choosing, which could have been pat of the problem. Who knows, maybe they really did come and secretly took a look at me and were scared off. I always thought the least they could have done was tell me. 

All of this time of being disappointed led me to wonder if the men in question were too afraid to be seen with me in public, what would happen if the relationship became serious enough that I was invited home with them to meet their family or even parents. It turned out I never had to face that terrifying  possibility because I never met and became that serious with a man at all. However, I did meet several women who embraced me for what I was and invited me to family functions. It turned out the transgender attracted men I met were just interested in me as some sort of a fetish object. They probably found out I could not compare to the transgender porn models they were watching who were impossibly beautiful. Before you think I am stereotyping all trans attracted men with a broad stroke, I did meet a couple of men I enjoyed my time with who weren't afraid to meet me in a public place and treat me as a woman. Plus there were a couple men I became friends with and often wondered what would have happened if they had not moved out of town.

Regardless, it was always my cis women friends who took me in and treated me as my authentic self. Often I was terrified and excited when women like Kim insisted I join her and her immediate family for a Monday Night NFL football game. I was so nervous I was sure every camera in the stadium was looking at me. It was one terrific learning experience. Then there was my wife Liz. 

It was not too long after we started seeing each other seriously she invited me on a family birthday party at a local steak house. It was her very conservative elderly fathers birthday and it was the first time I had ever really met him. Plus her brother was there who was not far removed from serving his third term in the Army in the Middle East. I felt I was surrounded and was very ill at ease. Somehow I made it though and even managed to enjoy part of the meal. For the rest of his life, I don't think Liz's Dad ever knew how to take me but at the least he wasn't mean to me. As far as the brother went, I barely see him and he barely talks when I do, so he is very much out of my life. 

I don't have any words of wisdom when it comes to going home with a friend to meet their family. For me. as I said, it was a terrifying experience but one I felt I had to live through to be accepted fully into the world. All part of my learning experience of what being a woman was really all about. I really appreciate those who weren't afraid to include me in their families.  Thanks all for the learning experience. I really needed someone to lean on.

Saturday, May 5, 2018

The Gender "Tipping Point" Part Two

Recently I wrote a post here in Cyrsti's Condo concerning my Gender Tipping Point. Connie wrote in and added:

"In my case, my rising femininity was more a matter of dropping the dead weight of the masculine facade I had been carrying around for so many years. I guess I'm one of those for whom being feminine has always been easier, but I began transitioning because I could no longer compartmentalize my gender expressions (masculine and feminine) in living as two separate personas. 

Interestingly, setting myself free to live authentically has led to my giving less and less thought to my gender at all. We are all really a combination of gender traits, yet the transgender person is so much more aware of her, or his, own gender than is the average cis person. My own dream is to achieve that kind of balance, unconcerned with tipping whatsoever."

Thanks for the comment! I too give less and less thought to gender as I live as me. Plus, the more I hear (primarily from the younger set) about "gender fluidity", the more I like it too. I agree we are all a mix of genders anyway.

Unfortunately, society still dictates a strict gender binary be followed in most all circumstances, as seen by the number of transgender or gender queer kids who end up estranged from their families on the street.

I think too, the amount of time I spent falling off the balance beam (or "she saw" as Connie called it), could have been spent so many other ways. I am saddened on what could have been.

Then again too, crying over "spilled make-up" is a waste of time too.

Wednesday, September 16, 2015

It's Time Trans Peeps!




U.S. Trans Survey (Closes 9/21)

***From helenboyd
If you haven't yet taken NCTE's current trans survey, get to it! It will close on Monday, 9/21, & it's important they hear all your voices.
By *all*, I mean especially those who tend not to do online surveys or who are otherwise often cut out by mainstream trans representation:
  • those who have stayed married
  • crossdressers who identify as trans*
  • genderqueer individuals
  • older trans people
  • trans people of color
Please, folks, this is your chance to get counted. If you tried before and it didn't work, do try again: they've got a fitter system in place.

Wednesday, April 24, 2013

Fun in "C-Bus"!

"C-bus" is an abbreviation used for "Columbus, Ohio" the site of the 5th annual Trans Ohio Symposium. As you probably know by now, I'm presenting a workshop on the subject of transitioning later in life.

After I saw the lineup of other presenters, not only was I humbled to be added-I was just a little scared. I've always thought though I was better in what ever I tried if I did have a touch of fear of the unknown pushing me. We will certainly find out Saturday afternoon!

Whatever I'm able to add or not add to this transgender education effort , the chance to have some fun is definitively in the mix!

Tomorrow (Thursday) is my appointment to add highlights to my hair at the salon and Friday I'm getting my ears pierced for the first time. That's all wonderful but Friday night I'm really looking forward to the Symposium's "Meet and Greet". It's in a place called "Club Diversity" downtown which is in an old Victorian house and not in a big faceless room in the hotel where the event is. BUT  I'm normally pretty shy at interacting with a group of strangers like this.  It will be interesting to see if any of the trans "big timers" attend.  Yes, I could easily be a groupie!!!! Ironically, it's my girlfriend who really wants to meet several of these peeps!

Then there is Saturday night.  My girlfriend identifies as a femme lesbian and I have very little interest in men so we are really interested in going to this:


"Fabulously Fluid!, Ohio’s only genderbent performance showcase, brings a diverse show about the fluidity of gender, with performances ranging from trans* performance, drag, burlesque, performance art, music, and dance. The show will be hosted by the fantastic drag king extraordinaire, Cool Ethan, and Midwest GenderQueer!" This doesn't seem like one of those normal you have seen it all before drag shows.

I have to admit, I don't consider as much as I should the rapidly expanding influence of the trans male in our community. I have a lot of tunnel vision as far as the content goes here in Cyrsti's Condo but I have one trans man friend in particular who has opened my eyes to his transition.

So I'm fairly certain I will live through my presentation and do the best I can but the two "events' which are in downtown C-bus should make the whole weekend worthwhile.

Tuesday, April 2, 2013

Hey! There's More!

I watched a totally wonderful talk show this morning which hit all the right transsexual "buttons". The first couple had stayed together through SRS and wife even has a job now counseling other transgender couples and kids. The second group was a family of four who raised a transgender son the correct way...with respect and support. The third person was the famous SRS surgeon Dr. Marci Bowers (right) who is a trans woman herself. Don't get me wrong, the show left me with all the proper "warm and fuzzies". The more mainstream shows who present the transgender story in a positive light...the better off we are.

But wait! I read this post from the Bilerico Project and realized show I watched this morning had nearly become routine to me and so much was missing. Here's an excerpt from the article by Drew Cordes:


"Don't get me wrong: Part of me is thrilled that trans* people are becoming more visible and gaining social acceptance. But the picture cis people and cis media paint of us is simplistic to say the least, and my concern is that it should not be only those trans people that our empathy, and thus, our resources, are going toward. We don't want to hear about the messy cases. We're not as familiar with the stories of inner-city trans* women of color who grow up disadvantaged, below the poverty line, poorly educated, disowned by family, and turn to sex work or living on the streets to survive. We don't hear those stories over and over, but they happen over and over. And usually those stories do not conclude on a hopeful note. Anyone who's ever attended a Trans* Day of Remembrance ceremony and heard the stories of all those murdered in the past year will solemnly corroborate this fact. We don't hear about the huge chunk of the trans* population that rebels against going from one sex all the way to the other, against our notions of what male and female are in the first place. We don't hear about those for whom gender is expressed in myriad incarnations besides just the familiar two. Where are the mainstream narratives for the femme faggy trans* men, masculine stone butch trans* dykes, intersex people who don't identify as male or female, genderqueer folks who favor a slinky cocktail dress Friday night and a three-piece suit on Saturday? Many of my friends are somewhere in that short list. I'm in that list. We're out there in sizable numbers, but culturally, we are not yet allowed to exist. It would be too confusing or off-putting to readers, viewers, listeners, students, employees, audiences, etc."

None of this is ever easy for sure. I just had one of many strange ideas buzz through my noggin...are these mainstream transgender shows  the new stealth in our community?
Yeah, we know your story already and have a great life but what about all the other of us?

Read all of Drew's post here.
Also here is a link to the Jeff Probst Show I saw.


Saturday, March 16, 2013

The Transgender Binary and the Titanic

Have you heard the "agender or neutrios" words?
As so many "terms" these days it comes from younger folks who live outside of the gender binary...which also trashes  the transgender binary too.
By now you may be wondering just what the heck do I mean "transgender binary"? Simple. There is a wide wonderful world between a cross dresser and a transsexual person.  DUH! Ideally this is yet another nail in the coffin of transsexual elitists and a dim patch of light in a cross dressers dark closet. Enough of my biased theory though lets take a look at how others look at it:

First from theFrisky  : "The term genderqueer speaks to a queerness in expression that isn’t immediately visible. For example, when I walk down the street with a shaved head, breasts, and a skirt it is not easy to guess my gender: my expression doesn’t match my identity as genderqueer in a way that most people can see. Some genderqueer people use fashion to exaggerate their androgyny, while others may not “look trans” at all, or may appear to be binary transgender people (as in, a “trans man” or a “trans woman”)."

Plus:
"In a piece on NYMag.com earlier this week, The Frisky contributor Rachel Rabbit White writes about people who identify as agender or neutrois, meaning a neutral gender."

As you read any or all of this, I'm sure you will realize quickly this is written mainly by biological women. Before you revert back to a typical male based response, consider theFrisky is a feminine site and if the women are doing this...the boys are too.

My point is if you are riding the outdated "transgender binary" cruise on the "Titanic" you may want to watch for ice bergs! You never know when you may want to get off.


Sunday, September 30, 2012

No Gender At All Part Two

For those of you who have visited Cyrsti's Condo for awhile, you will know the respect I have for Sherri Lynne who is a transitioning transgender therapist who actually works with trans patients.
Her latest post actually revolves around her visit to the recent Southern Comfort Conference. As I read on though, the post actually went into a portion of the subject in my End of Men topic:

" I heard the attitude shared that many younger people at the conference philosophically don't like the idea of having a gender identity at all. They identify as gender queer or other similar labels and they would deny everyone their own right to a gender identity as male or female in a society of their own design. I find it interesting that they would segregate themselves and impose a societal code that denies others of their own gender identity. You see this theme in much of feminist academic writing and in the presentations these individuals give at workshops. They want to impose the use of new language in the use of pronouns that deny the existence of gender identity. Ironically, these folks seem to be a small proportion of those in the gender community. I can never see myself identifying as anything than "female" or "woman" and would feel oppressed by a society that denies me my own identity, much as these individuals feel oppressed by a society that expects them to have a gender identity of either male or female. I find that rather ironic that they would choose to subject others to the same oppression they seek to be freed from."

Read more from Sherri Lynne here!

Saturday, June 16, 2012

Behind Door Number 3....

I'm always flattered when somehow I trigger an intellectual response to the gender intensive lives we live.
In a second I will direct you to one such example from Sherri Lynne. 
asked her for her ideas on various life forms under the transgender umbrella.
First, a disclaimer/explanation of the evolution of this form known as Cyrsti's Transgender Condo.
Two years ago this whole exercise started as a documentation of my trip down gender lane-nothing more-nothing less. Not surprisingly, I found out a percentage of folks found my stories interesting and of course (more than a few) not so much.
As I started to be a bit of a Reader's Digest of our culture, of course I thought I would add a few of my own thoughts which pretty much brings us to where we are today. Of course I have my passions. Fortunately for all of you, I don't have the inclination or the background to embark on long in depth clinical discussions.
My goal has always been to provide a common look at our culture. Often it is not so easy. Pause for a moment and consider the problem of loosely describing a person's "genderality". Imagine adding transgender, transsexual, gender queer or cross dresser to every person's descriptor which you aren't sure of. Yet, here we are.
Now, I'm going to direct you here to Sherri Lynne for her take on the labels.
I love it when she calls me a muse instead of one that amuses!

Sunday, May 27, 2012

Just A Moment to Think

When I see all the thousands of words written on all the nuances of the transgender or transsexual or bi gender or gender queer or the gender of the earth worms in your back yard- it has occurred to me it all comes down to this video:


All of the sudden the real problem is so clear and exceeding sad.

Wednesday, April 18, 2012

Worse Than Tranny?

I so agree the use of the "T" word for a person such as me is the same as the "N" word for an African American or any other of the racial slurs.
There are other words however I see as worse. When someone calls me a  "Gurl" or "Grrl" it just drives me crazy. 
To start with both words just sound so gross.  I call them "grinder" words which roll off your tongue like a piece of gravel.
On a much deeper level the words question my true gender identification. Label me anyway you must Gender Queer, Transgendered or whatever but not Gurl, Grrl or Tranny.
I equate it to a person I ran into not so long ago that I told about the hormones I'm on and they said "Oh, you are taking this seriously!" Really? I wasn't serious before?
Thanks for reading my rant! It's nice to get it off my chest which is finally starting to mean something!

Friday, April 6, 2012

Gender Queer?

After a quarter of a million hits here (thanks to all!), it may be time to take a look at another term which I have seen a lot of but never really looked into it's real meaning.
The term is "gender queer" and here is one definition from the Urban Dictionary:

"Genderqueer is most commonly used to describe a person who feels that his/her gender identity does not fit into the socially constructed "norms" associated with his/her biological sex.
Genderqueer is an identity that falls anywhere between man/boy/male and woman/girl/female on the spectrum of gender identities."
Example: "Mary doesn't feel that s/he fits the mold of any one particular gender; therefore, Mary identifies as genderqueer".

And another:
"Any position in a wide variety of gender identities, spanning the spectrum between male and female. A person who is Genderqueer is not transgendered, though the option is open to transition. Being genderqueer has no bearing on sexual identity or orientation."
Example: "Eli might have a woman's body, but ze doesn't feel like a woman or a man. Eli is genderqueer."

At the risk of starting another worthless war on words here and launching yet another term (which is new to me at least)-I definitely will revisit the term in the future!