Content tagged 'acceptance'
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Went to my best female friends family reunion and was a blast. Although I have known her for close to nine years have never met all the people who were there today, a rough guess of 30 family members and I left early, more were coming. I was seen (note I did not say treated) no different than any other cisgender female at the gathering. During the four hours I was there joined in to several conversations which was great as I much rather chit chat then simply sitting there only knowing her immediate family.
In my last entry I touched on having a good support system. This woman has been there for me through both surgeries. Her three children treat me like family and her husband although had issues with me in the beginning has come around to accepting me. I have to say this family truly helped me leap a few hurdles during my journey.
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I had nothing on my agenda today so off to the mall to browse around. After entering the mall through Macy's my phone rings, look down and it's my son. So I answer the phone and he says "happy father's day". We chat, here ask how things are going in Oregon (he is in California). I did the usual, everything is fine then tell him about my transition.
My expected response did not come which would be something like "why" but instead he asked questions which I answered and he seems fine with what I am doing. I told him that everyone knew except for him as I was not sure how it would be taken. At one point in the conversation I ask if it would be alright if I could come down and visit and he is fine with me coming down.
Usually are chats are about ten minutes but after getting off the phone this call was almost an hour and only part of the discussion was about me while the remainder was about what he was up to and other family members. In regards to other family members, both him and he's sister chat on average once a month and she went and visited him last summer for a week.
So I am very optimistic that I have a strong connection to both of my children now which is fantastic.
In retrospect I was not looking forward to "the" talk about me transitioning and happy it was done now this way.
UPDATE After the phone call I sent him a picture of me but did not hear back then remember him saying he was off to work after done talking. So two hours later I get a text message back in response to the picture that was all positive.
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By MonicaPz, postedToday, I came across a moving and beautiful article by a reader of Lesbian Connection . . .
"I am 64; I was born female and I have been Lesbian identified since I was 19 (soft butch). I was active in the Gay Rights and the Women's Rights movements. It is now 2015, and many things have changed."
"I am weary of the ANTI-TRANSWOMEN words I keep reading here, and I'm having a hard time with some of the more caustic comments! I have not heard anybody say whether or not these women are actually transgender or transsexual; I am assuming transgender. If they are transgender, do they identify as Lesbian? Many do. I am also disappointed by women who insist on calling transwomen "men." I don't care what chromosomes they had at birth; I care about who they are. Are you still referring to Chaz Bono as 'she'?"
"As Lesbians, we fought so hard for acceptance, and it is just inconceivable that we could be so unaccepting of another subculture whose journey is more difficult than many of ours. When I was younger, I was involved for nearly two years with a transgender woman (her physical and legal transition was complete when I met her). Because of this I had the enlightening opportunity to meet many other trans folks of both genders, and the chance to learn about and try to understand their world. I met many wonderful and sincere people, some of whom had suffered terrible abuse as transpersons. It does not matter what gender a person is born; if they do not identify with that gender, then life is a nightmare. I applaud those who have the strength and resources to make a very difficult change. Once they make it, they have every right to be seen as that gender, be it male to female, or female to male! I also happen to think that those in between have the right to be called whatever they feel identifies them."
"I feel strongly that it is time to acknowledge that the world has changed considerably since the '70s. Lesbians have NOT been erased; we have been mainstreamed! Isn't that what most of us wanted - to be treated the same as Straight folks, with the same rights and opportunities?"
"During my thirties, I pretty much lived in a Lesbian-dominated world, and I loved it. Then things started to change. I found myself with more Straight friends and working mostly with Straight people. Although I did not like the changes at first, I now realize I live in a much larger world. While I miss some things about the old days, I believe that living in this larger world is a good thing, and for my part, I am determined that it will be open to diversity, including transgender women. And I want to give my thumbs up to the readers who had the courage to give supportive comments about transwomen!"
- Margaret P.
Margaret P. writes a beautiful article about the importance of Lesbians to deal with their fear of losing their identity as they become mainstreamed rather than lashing out at another minority culture.
Couldn't agree more!
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It was a little while ago that I learnt that the little things are what make the real difference. In the end, it was the little things that ended my relationship with my sexually abusive, racist, sociopathic father. It's the little kindnesses, like when a phone operator accepted my deed poll (including a change of name and title) without a single change in tone or warmth and immediately started referring to me as 'miss'.
It's also the little things that keep things amazing. It's Autumn now in the UK, and that first morning where I went out to my car and could actually smell the changing season made the difference between the blossoming Summer and the long wind-down to Christmas. It's the little things like looking at my figure in the mirror and actually noticing it's now a tiny bit curvier and bustier. It's someone over the phone assuming I'm a woman, instead of the other thing.
In terms of passing for my true gender, rather than the one I ended up with, it's also the little things that make it work. For 18 months I cross-dressed, then began formally transitioning. I learnt how to be a woman in the space those 2 years, whereas most women learn it over the course of 20-ish years.
I went from laying makeup on so thick that I was going through foundation almost every month, to using only the bare minimum and still looking 15 times better. It was little tricks with my hair that stopped me looking like a man in drag to actually passing, at a distance, for a woman.
After that, it was little touches to my stance, my expression, my voice and my clothing that got me to the point where I actually pass well- even close up. It's the little touches that make it work- the broad-brush foundations of wearing a bra, a skirt and a blouse do less for the big picture than little understandings like how to smile sweetly (that last one's a puzzler when you're all hair and teeth like me!).
But it cuts both ways, the little choices other people make can affect me profoundly. The times when my mother ignores or brushes off my infrequent requests for positive affirmation - "I think I'm passing well...?" "I think I look quite good...?" "I think my extra weight makes me cuter...?" - hurt like getting a potato peeler across the palm. They're not life threatening injuries, but just feel like being punished on a small scale and wanting to know 'why?!'.
My newest battle for the little things ('new' in the sense that this battle actually started about 2 months ago and it finally ground me down to the point that I will now correct people for it) is people calling me 'mate' in conversation. See, on paper it's just a friendly (but not too friendly) term of address- particularly common in the UK. However, the problem is that in the UK 'mate' is also used most commonly to address men
My line manager calls me mate. My colleagues call me mate. A particularly unimpressed looking attendant who runs the early morning shift at my local petrol station calls me mate. People on the phone even call me mate (though, mysteriously, only when they know I am MTF).
I've started correcting them politely but firmly: "I'm not a 'mate', I'm a 'miss'".
It's hard, because I get it usually at the end of a short conversation. That means I have to re-open the dialogue in order to correct them.
First world problems blah blah blah. I know, if this is the worst thing that happens to me (and believe me, it is a damned long way off) I'll have done quite well. It just cuts, like a sheet of stiff A4 copier paper down the cuticle on a finger. Not enough to be life threatening, but enough to raise my ire when I realise there's now not a single cuticle on my manicured little hands left un-bloodied.
The worst part is the lady who works in the petrol station. She calls me 'mate' with meaning: she doesn't accept my gender and wants to make it clear she's 'on to' me. She sees through me, too sharp for such a silly tranny to pull the wool over her eyes.
I want to look her in the eyes and calmly tell her that I prefer to be called 'miss', Kaylee or by my last name. The problem is it's one little paper cut too far... I chose to not buy my petrol in the mornings any more.
I think I need to let my other cuts heal a little, first.
Kaylee is a pansexual, trans-woman. She is pre-op and has been on hormones since June 2013. She is a size 14 (and growing!) gender/sexuality/sex/size advocate. Curvy, cute, bi and proud. She is a successful technology expert in the UK, in a long-term, committed relationship with a trans-man.
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By MonicaPz, postedEveryone, and I mean everyone, no one is immune, experiences open (obvious) and closed (not so obvious) rejection in their lives, through all stages of their life, starting in the very earliest years.
The reality is that not everybody likes or loves you, but there will be some who do. The secret is to focus on those who do, and innoculate yourself from those who don't, thus removing their power to hurt you.
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One of my Facebook friends is my daughter's best friend who posted that she closed the front door and the security latch got wedged into the door preventing it from opening and asked for help. Since I knew she lived closed by I replied with "I will help if you still need assistance". She gave me her address, five minutes from my home. Went over, I knocked on the front door and she came around from the back door. When she greeted me (she had not seen me in five years) no reactions or comments on my new look as female. Looked at the front door, figured out I needed to pry the door and by thinking ahead of time brought a pry-bar with me. Took two minutes to free the door then a minute to hammer a metal strip back into place. Turned to her and said "done", she thanked me and I left.
When I returned home she had sent me a private message
You look great by the way! I suppose I figured out what your trip to California was about and wow! Congrats on looking awesome!!
I guess she then scrolled through my Facebook notes and on one wrote
You are so beautiful. Really. Just so you know.
More validation for me. Perhaps this might nudge others down their chosen path of transitioning.
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