01 April 2008

Trans thoughts

Lately I've been thinking a lot about transgender-related issues. Transgender people and their struggles are an aspect of sexuality that is often marginalized and ridiculed even in the GLBT community. It is hard to imagine how hard it would be to grow up feeling as if you were born in the wrong sexed body. It makes me sad that people have to struggle with that, and that even if they choose to change their physical appearance to reflect how they feel inside they are then ostracized for being weird or freakish. That's a level of struggle and pain I wouldn't wish on anyone.

In the news lately: a transman is pregnant. This is really not that difficult to understand. Biological woman has chest reconstruction surgery and starts taking testosterone to make her (now his) physical appearance match his gender. Happy married couple decides to have a baby, but his wife had a hysterectomy years ago. He steps up to the plate, stops taking testosterone injections, and conceives. I say "great! A loved and wanted child being brought into a loving, caring household!" Unfortunately not much of society feels the same way I do. He has even had problems getting prenatal care from area doctors. Funny, I thought doctors were supposed to, above all else, "first do no harm". Hrmm. I wish the best for them in their pregnancy and beyond. (Sidenote: Thomas Beattie will be interviewed on Oprah this Thursday. So if you have a TV and are interested, tune in!)

Something else to think about: as a cisgendered person (that is, a person whose gender matches their biological sex), I have privileges. Privileges I don't often think about, but are inherent in our heterosexual, cisgendered dominant culture. Here's a good checklist of non-trans privileges in everyday life. Take a look.

3 comments:

Amy said...

I caught the end of Boys Don't Cry on the movie channel one time and COMPLETELY forgot that Hillary Swank was playing the character. I remember crying and then thinking," what did he ever do to you, except make you feel uncomfortable in your own skin?" That's one of many things I LOVE about hanging out with you guys, because you guys open us up to new and different things that make me REALLY THINK about why my opinion is the way it is? And the answer usually ends up being "Because that's what I was programmed to think." And you always say that you are bad influences on us, I think you guys have been one of the best influences on us, thanks!! By the way, Aaron LOVED, AND I MEAN LOVED climbing with Josh. HE'S ADDICTED, YAHHHHHH!!

Mama bee said...

Thanks, Amy. I'm glad we can push you a little and make you think about things you otherwise wouldn't. I think we can all use a little nudge out of our comfort zones now and then. :-)

Lindsey said...

I can hook you up with an Oprah viewing if you want to see it. Comes on at 4:00, I might check it out...unless of course I'm out pushing a swing.