Lauren works as a case manager at a social service agency. She notes:
“Transgender is a big word towering over the various groups of transsexuals, cross-dressers, bois, drag kings and queens, genderqueer and many other tribes. From my own experience, I cannot speak for this vast multitude. I will speak of my experience as a post-transsexual woman.”
For those readers who are not familiar, ♂ is typically the symbol used for “male” sex, and ♀ used for “female” sex. Lauren adds: “I think we need more words for gender than just Male, Female, and Intersex.”
And now… Lauren’s amazing story:
On the Corner of T Street and Avenue B
It’s interesting being a member of two of the least understood letters in the alphabet soup community. I know of a couple who identify as pansexual and trans. One is ♂ to ♀and the other is ♀ to ♂. They have been asked “Why transition when you two can have sex anyway?”.
I have been asked “Why transition, you have sex with both men and women anyway?”. I am bisexual, and ♂ to ♀.
I did not have “gender reassignment surgery”. My gender cannot be changed. I had “sex reassignment surgery”. Biological sex can be changed. Let’s be clear about this: I have had sexual intercourse with both women and men as a male-bodied person. I have had sex with both women and men as a female-bodied person. But I always felt myself to be female, no matter what equipment I had. So why transition?
Because my gender was always female, even before my sex was female. I looked like a scary dangerous guy, but there was a very frightened little girl at the controls. I can only live in the world as a female person, and I had a great deal of physical dysphoria. Thus a physical change was necessary.
Because I stand on the corner of these two streets, I have been called many things. I am NOT “a very gay man who became a woman to have sex with men”. I am NOT “a suppressed lesbian”. I am NOT “confused”. I am NOT “a bi-curious woman”. I am NOT “a straight woman” as some in the trans community would like me to be (I’m currently dating a man who is also bi). I was born with a definite orientation, and that orientation IS bisexual.
I AM a bisexual woman.
It seems that there are still some on T street who would prefer that post-trans women marry men to show the world how “normal” we are. Are my boyfriend and I a straight couple? No, we are not. (Call me “normal” and you have insulted me.)
There are also some on Avenue B who don’t get the distinction between sex and gender. Female-bodied people can be men sometimes and male-bodied people can be women sometimes. Some of us take steps to correct the incongruity, spending a lot of money and emotional capital to do so. There are those who can live with a social transition, without undergoing physical transformation, and I accept that. But some unfortunate women cannot afford to correct their anatomy and some unfortunate men cannot afford to correct their anatomy, while their brains still contain the body-map of their gender, not their current sex. This leads to a physical dysphoria, which needs a physical solution.
I could blather on about the density of neurons in the BSTc section of the brain, but this is not a neurology lesson.
Standing on this corner, I seem to have a chance to educate people about two of those scary letters. Standing on this corner, I see the world from a very unique perspective. Standing on this corner, I also have a chance to be marginalized by both communities. Standing on this corner, some people see me as a dangerous monster. Standing on this corner, if certain people knew what I am, they would kill me.
Standing on this corner, I have a chance to show the world that these two letters cover some wonderful and loving people.