Being out in social situations and meeting new people is a trip and a half. I am noticing some things that I never before experienced. In particular, men and women are both treating me differently, in general. This also goes for people who have known me since before I began transition.
It is easier to put my finger on these differences than it is to identify what is causing them. The primary suspects, 1: I am very self-conscious and socially awkward when meeting new people since I began public transition, 2: Many people just can’t wrap their heads around the whole trans thing, 3: Women respond differently to men, and by transitioning, I have become much more approachable by other women, 4: Men can feel like their masculinity is being threatened by simply being seen associating with me. 5: I am transitioning.
In some ways, I am being ushered out of the Men’s Club and put en queue for The Women’s Club. Yay. I guess.
I anticipate things will normalize eventually, as I become secure in my own skin. Much of what I perceive could be completely due to my new, bashful behavior which I do hope to quell before it becomes a pattern. And yet that behavior is far less abrupt and aggressive as my prior behavior patterns. Part of it may be who I truly am. Perhaps being an exhibitionistic extrovert was just me trying a bit too hard to pass as male.
This all is a big mind fuck.
All I know is I am acting differently in social situations. Not trying to be particularly feminine, perhaps a little. Wearing a wig, makeup, a bra and a dress can help do that too. And yet I am FAR from comfortable in my own skin. Also, I am far from comfortable in some feminine attire. Torture devices, some of these things, I tell you.
Striking a conversation with a straight male is TOUGH. I do not have that magnetic allure they associate with females, and again, my transition can threaten even the most innocent of men’s masculinity. It may have something to do with the whole cock and balls eventually getting, “Chopped off” thing that makes most men uncomfortable… but I just don’t quite know what it is…
Then there are the women. Thank God for women! I wouldn’t say they all welcome me with open arms, but I neither threaten their masculinity nor their femininity. Being seen with me is a good thing. I make a great fashion accessory. “Hey, look at Linda and her adorable trans* person!”
There are jerks. The people who can not hide their disgust. Males and females both can fall into this category. Watching a person’s face turn from indifferent to disgust once they realize I am trans is disconcerting and awful. I do believe the stats. violence rates towards trans folk are high. People can now judge me with a glance like they think they have known me my entire life. That will take some getting used to, and also helps me understand why so many trans people opt for plastic surgery. Blending in is often enough, for our own protection and peace of mind.
There are people who pity me. That takes getting used to as well. “Oh! That poor trans person needs my help.” Sadly I do. So, I will accept the pity.
There are plenty of people who are quite amused by my very presence. This is kinda’ cool, kinda’ not so cool. I do not transition for the amusement of others. I act, write and sing for the amusement of others… whatever…
Some people seem to hate me for transitioning not because they hate trans folk but because it impacts my wife. I can respect that. I wish it didn’t, but it does. I have not chained her to me. So far, she remains by my side. It is her stubborn choice and I know it was not the easy choice.
There has been a surprising lack of negativity directed towards my trans nature, but there is some. People, for the most part, continue to treat me as a respected human, and they still value my thoughts and feelings, something I have been told many times would not be the case. Being trans and out in social situations changes everything, but I imagine so would passing as female. I have been treated as a male for 37 years, and contrary to what you may have heard, even ignoring the fact I am trans and never particularly enjoyed being male, it is not always that great. Some things come easier for men socially, and some things are much harder. The repression of emotion that is expected from men is damn near fatal, and when those emotions come to surface they can erupt in a violent rage. I would not doubt that has something to do with the reduced life expectancy in men.
I know this post is not my best. It is a bit generalized, and many of these patterns I have started to detect are unconfirmed. I just figured I would write something to get the wheels turning once again. I have not blogged in a while. I needed to get back on the horse.