open letter to transphobic cis people

angry/transphobic binary cis people,

if you know non-binary trans people exist, you may think we are weird/gross/delusional.  you may think that non-binary trans people are unnatural– constructed/synthesized/wrong.  you probably can’t imagine being trans, can’t imagine feeling that your body doesn’t always belong to you.  you probably don’t know what it’s like to experience something like motion sickness because too many people think you’re something you’re not.  maybe you’ve never attempted/considered suicide because you knew that you couldn’t do it anymore– the lies were chewing you up with their yellow teeth while the people around you smiled whitely.

know what?  i can’t imagine being a binary cis person; i’ve never been a binary cis person.  i don’t know what it’s like to have my gender appear on my passport/my birth certificate/application forms.  i’ve never seen a movie featuring characters of my (non-binary) gender.  there are no bathrooms/change rooms for people of my gender and i can’t imagine knowing what bathroom/change room to choose.  i don’t know what it would be like to be proud of my assumed reproductive capabilities instead of being revolted by them.

i can’t imagine being you, but i believe that you are fucking real.  seriously.  i believe that you are who and what you say you are– i have nothing to go on but your word and i might as well take it.  i believe that you, like me, sleep/love/fail/fuck/shit/eat/strive/change/win/die and that you deserve respect.

i also know that i am fucking real and that transness feels pretty natural to me.  my word is all you have to go on; why not just take it?  whose word would you take instead?

if you have anything to say about this, write me a letter.  i want to know you with all my bones.

sincerely, mx. punk

*   *   *

k, you can tell me what you think even if you aren’t an angry, transphobic cis person.  i think cis people probably DO experience a lot of the same things (non-binary and binary) trans people experience– tell me about it.  let’s confabulate, peoples.

5 responses to “open letter to transphobic cis people

  1. As it happens, I was just having a nice conversation earlier today with a basically nice cis person when BOOM! – their transphobia came out in a little anecdote about their mistaking a transwoman for a “real” woman. My first reaction was outrage – but then I realized that I too was once sadly ignorant like them, and only journeying through life and learning has changed my awareness. Unfortunately, unlike you, MxPunk, I haven’t always been clear about who I am and what it means. It’s taken me a while to sort it all out, and i’m still on the road. I admire the fact that you are so solid in that knowledge, and always have been. But I guess one thing having struggled with this over the years has given me, is the ability to empathize even with the phobic, ignorant folks of the world. I make no excuse for hatefulness or bashing, but I sincerely believe some people can learn, grow and change, with our help.

    With the person in question, I took the opportunity to give them a little trans lesson. They honestly didn’t know the difference between a transgendered person and a cross-dresser, so I started there. It may still be a long road for this person to actually learn to respect people so different from them, but I hope through knowing me they will make progress down that road. I didn’t explain to them that I was genderqueer (yet); that’s definitely a 301 or 401 subject, and they’re just starting 101. But they at least acknowledged that they didn’t grow up knowing anything about trans people or even gay people in their backwater town. And acknowledging your ignorance is a good place to start.

  2. that’s awesome! i think one of the best things we can do is try to educate people; if we at least point them in the right direction, maybe they’ll continue learning on their own, right? there is no excuse for ignorance, but there IS an easy fix for it.

    i try to be open– but i DO end up in situations where, for whatever reason, i feel that it’s inappropriate to come out. or i just get shy– it happens. i keep working on it, though! :)

    rock on!

  3. I have the same hesitations – it’s a real vulnerability and a trust to reveal who you are in this culture, especially for folks like us. It’s a very real possibility that our life could literally depend on it.

    Keep doing what you do, my friend; we’ll see the revolution come yet. :)

  4. That letter really hits the meat of the problem. And that is that we’re expected to take them at what they say about who and what they are, but because we are less “real” or “valid” they refuse to take us at our word. It’s really a biased load of nonsense, but I digress. What is funny about it, is that our genders are often far deeper and more validated than theirs, which usually hinges only on a false and manufactured cultural pretext. It’s why they get so confused/angry/irritated when others definitions/presentations of gender inadvertently invade their own. We non-binaries shake the very ground the walk on (which is unstable to begin with), and make their heads spin like a few to many bottles of rum.

    Hopefully your letter will help at least a few hapless fools shed their ignorance and find their sea-legs on this rocking ocean of gender. The boat always sways but up is always up, and down is always down. The sea makes everyone sick the first time they go on a long journey… just don’t forget to throw out a live preserver every once in a while. :3 Mew.

    By the way, I loves your blogs as always and the make me go mew, which is a good thing :3.

  5. Viva La Tranarchy! VIVA!

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