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katblaque:

So, because of my selifies and my recent illustration of MotherlyMarq i’ve gotten a ton of new followers. I’ve been doing this thing where I follow back pretty much everyone that follows me. A lot of these blogs were feminist in nature but I had no idea that there were some of the people i followed (who followed me generally after reblogging or liking said posts)  were TERFs (Transgender Exclusionary Radical Feminists).

Now, i just wanted to make something clear because I know that I don’t necessarily broadcast this as loudly as I”m sure a lot of people would like for me to :

I AM A TRANS WOMAN.

The fact that you liked a post of mine or you read something I posted and thought i was truthful should tell you something about not only my feminism, but my experiences in life as a woman, specifically, a black woman. While there is a large part of me that understands some of the criticisms TERFs have of trans people, I also feel really quite silly when people challenge, deny or question my lived experiences as a woman in this world. Yes, there’s something to be said about socialization. Yes there’s something to be said about aspects of womenhood I’ll never experience but none of this, I repeat none of this, actually changes the minds of the racists and sexists who dismiss me because of my gender and feel entitled to my body because of my race. My socialization or my chromosomes don’t pop up when i need them when i’m applying to a job and I can’t just pull my male privilege card whenever i want to because of my birth.

When I leave this house I have men constantly telling to smile, yelling “hey sexy lady” and white men who corner me and proposition me for s ex because they’ve never had any of that “chocolate” or “ebony” before and they heard we’re the best. I’m still made to feel that my hair texture is invalid because of Eurocentric standards. I’m still going to face society valuing me less because I’m a woman of size and constantly told that I’m fat and worthless because I’m not the prefect thin silhouette of the idealized (European) woman. These are realities for me as a trans woman and they will persist whether or not you want to acknowledge or accept me into your club. These will still be real issues for me and that’s that.

Hi Kat! I’m not sure who this is directed at - though I get called a TERF on here somewhat regularly (even though I am also a trans woman, like you). I reblog and like your posts fairly often, and I am followed by a number of radical feminists - so maybe I had something to do with this? Just musing.

The reason I like your blog is that you are really open and honest about the practical parts of your life as a trans woman, a black woman, and a “woman of size” (as you say ;) ). I think all of us as trans women need more real talk, less “I identify therefore I am” fantasy! That’s the part of your blog I love. I also agree that some radical feminist analysis of gender is too simplifying and fails to capture the reality of trans women, especially the lives of trans women who pass as female (since that makes a big difference in the kind of things we face in our lives day-to-day). So I would actually really like this entire post, except for the use of the slur TERF. :(

I really really wish you wouldn’t use the word “TERF”! There are no feminist women who “identify” as TERFs - this is a term made up by really over-the-top male rage trans activists (like Christan Williams) to slur women. And if you don’t think it’s a slur: p lease look at the way it is used every single day on tumblr. Ms Hell Bedlam kindly assembled a whole bunch of tumblr posts and tweets that use TERF as a slur, combined with death threats. Is this really the kind of talk you want to associate with, or support?

I know that radical feminist discourse feels threatening to trans women - it can be really difficult to accept the fact that we are male-sexed, even if we live as women. But reality also has the right to be correct. I know that you want to “support trans women” with your writing - as do I, by the way - but that doesn’t mean you have to deny that any trans woman ever had male privilege, even if you don’t personally experience any right now. A lot of trans women (the majority?) live as gender-conforming men into their 50’s before they transition: they definitely experienced male privilege! And let’s be real: there are a lot of “trans women” who are pretty indistinguishable from men. (Seriously, watch that video, and let me know if you really feel like that person is your “sister”? Fuck.)

As someone who is generally perceived to be female (like you are), I’m siding with other people perceived t o be female (ie FEMALES, and some trans women) over males who make death threats to women, whether or not those males are trans. Male violence is epidemic, and I am not going to support it!

This doesn’t mean I don’t support trans women who don’t pass - I do! (Except when they say they’re female - none of us are female.) And I have had all kinds of trans woman friends. But when a trans woman looks and acts like a man, it doesn’t magically change reality just because she says “I’m a lady”.

Again, I love your blog, and I hope you have the clarity of vision and strength of will to buck the mainstream of trans activism on this, and stop using the slur TERF. If intersectionality means anything, it means recognizing male-pattern violence against females for what it is.

Best wishes.

(via katblaque)

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(via sometranslady-deactivated201610)

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asked: Non-trans WoC here. First, I love your blog. Second, as for the 'Cotton Ceiling' thing, I can sympathize with transwomen. We black women get knocks to our 'woman-hood' all the damn time from every direction. But black people don't have the luxury of throwing tantrums over non-black people refusing to have sex with us. Does it hurt? Sure it does. But getting hung up over the few that won't be with us makes us overlook the many who will.

First, thanks!

Second, yes I get where you’re coming from. I know from experience, it is very uncomfortable to feel in-between sexes, or to feel like the only people who are attracted to you are attracted to aspects of yourself that you feel bad about. But I think you also clearly articulated the difference, which is that instead of just accepting that not everyone is into trans people, trans women in particular have made sexual “rights” a major part of our political platform. It’s incredibly self-centered.

Thanks for the note!

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redressalert:

Duchesne County woman pleads guilty to child sex abuse committed while she was a man

I am horrified by this man’s crimes and I have a serious prob lem with the language here.

Not only is it a dangerous erasure of male violence to call this person a woman at all, but “a woman who was living as a man” is the furthest thing. “A woman living as a man” is how some might describe me when I was transitioning. “A woman living as a man” is a passing woman. This is not a woman who was “living as a man." This is a man who wants to "live as a woman,” whatever that means in his twisted, sexual-violator schema.

He has at least three victims, one of whom was a 5-year-old girl at the time he attacked her. They know what he is.

If it weren’t for the kind of Stockholm Syndrome present in some victimized women who continue to defend their attackers’ precious “identities,” I would say that the victims of sexual violator “transwomen” should be the gold standard for gatekeeping their attackers&rsqu o; “treatment” options. Forget the HBSOC, forget convincing a “gender therapist.” The little girl you molested knows exactly what you are.

(Source: , via redressalert)

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redressalert:

redressalert:

“You walked alone, full of laughter, you bathed bare-bellied. You say you have lost all recollection of it, remember … You say there are no words to describe this time, you say it does not exist. But remember. Make an effort to remember. Or, failing that, invent.”

Monique Wittig, from Les Guérillères

I’ve long harbored these suspicions that a lot of what I think of as “me” is a reaction to my conditions. As a trauma survivor, I have not only wondered at what I would be like without my damage, but have worked like hell to find out, as much as that’s possible.

 As a survivor, I am a huge success story. I was a dissociated, addicted, intimacy-avoidant self-harming agoraphobic with obsessive/compulsive behaviors and a messy interpersonal life, to put it kindly. For many years now I have been dramatically recovered—clean and sober, stopped self-harming, am able to travel widely and love hard, and am high-functioning with the exception of some anxiety.

All of the work I’ve done to get here has benefited me, of course—my life has been transformed by it. And yet, the knowledge of my own power had always remained hovering somewhere around me, nebulous, never quite touching my skin. While I had accomplished all of this healing and integration before I ever set foot at Michigan Womyn’s Music Festival, I had not glimpsed the truth of who I really am and what I am truly capable of, until I got to the Land.

I was not crushed by my anxiety at the Festival. I did not feel awkward. I knew there was nothing wrong with me. Knew this.

On the Land, the power I’ve been cultivating for so long dropped down to reside within my body for the very first time. I glowed with it. It rose off of me like electricity.

 In mensland, one of my worst anxiety triggers is public speaking. At Fest, I co-presented a workshop called Detransition Perspectives. I spoke to a larger-than-expected audience of women about some of the most intimate details of my life: words not easily spoken to the most trusted therapist, sponsor, lover, or friend. I heard myself projecting these words with casual authority to a crowd of women I’d never met before, in trust. And I could trust them. It was not that they all knew, from direct experience, what I was on about. It was that they were listening and empathizing so hard, with so much love, that their care was palpable. They were not an audience but witnesses. They spread their wings over me in she lter. They cried when I couldn’t afford to. They held space for me. They cared.

In fact, they received my trust and accorded me respect and even a kind of status for having offered it. Status does not operate in a familiar way on the Land, but apparently one way it can be attained is by offering generously and intimately of yourself. Have you ever felt that your life was being wasted, sucked out of you? Have you felt that what is yours uniquely to contribute is wasted on the world at large? That you labor too long and for no real purpose? That what is true and beautiful in you is lost on the people you’re surrounded by? At Fest, what you give is received so open-heartedly. What you are matters and is seen.

When Nedra Johnson sings in her brilliant new song, August Moon, “We know we are love,” that is not a platitude. However it may sound to cynical ears outside the Land of the Living Matriarchy, this is the fundamental truth of Michigan: nothing I had ever experienced in my life prior to the Festival prepared me for the way that I was treated there. I have never in my life been so loved, respected, appreciated, cared for, listened to, and held—as a whole, complicated, messy, difficult, jagged Self. At Michigan, for the first time, I was not indigestible. I was not a contaminant. Nobody sought to “normalize” me in any way. I was held, as-is, without judgment or expectation of change. There was no sense that I was “too much,” too intense, too dykey, too loud, too mouthy, too strange, too anything.

Norms don’t function, at Michigan, the way they do in m ensland. I had assumed that at Michigan, norms might be reversed; i.e., where straight is the norm out here, lesbian would be the norm at Fest. It’s true that there are far more lesbians than straight women at Fest; it is true that this culture is lesbian-feminist by origin; but it’s not true that the norms are simply reversed. It’s not a preservation of existing power structures with a simple exchange of nouns; it’s an entirely different way of norming altogether. At Fest, the norm is multiplicity. The norm is that there are always more than two sides. The norm is that there is room for you, me, her, them, her, her, her, and her—to all be valid and real and respected. Contradiction and conflict are not a threat. There is no scarcity of legitimacy, so it’s not made into a hierarchy where you have to fight each other to win it. There is a bedrock assumption that women will not throw each other away over their differences, even when they are painful to navigate. I would say that the bonds are more familial, but I have seen the nuclear kind of family explode over far less. On a related note, it generally sucks to be the “only” of something in a group, but I actually found even this type of experience to be palpably different and less hopelessly alienating at Fest.

Another critical difference between mensland and Michfest is the music. There is a reason womyn’s music gets treated as a joke out here. Out here, music can be a lot of things: entertainment; an aesthetic badge of belonging within a subculture, where the aesthetics are supposed to convey a message about your identity; the sonic equivalent of art to match a sofa; the receptacle for your entire emotional experience which is disconnected from every other part of your life; or, rarely, something closer to religion. At Fest, that last meaning is brought into play in an expanded way, a way that is not divorced from the rest of the culture of the place, but that acts as its fully integrated, beating heart. The artists at Michigan are not “the entertainment;” they are something like Priestesses. Again, you are not engaged as a passive audience, but as witness and participant. These women are the soul of the Place, and some of its most powerful leaders. They create with each other in a way that conjures ideas of alchemy—they transmute reality. Simply, they are making magic and inviting you in. Across genre, the performers practice a deeply female art, and it is indescribable. Elemental. Outside of time, and resonant in a way that feels ancestral. This is more like what music was before it was ever recorded, before it was ever supposed to make money, before it was about ego in any way. It really doesn’t matter if you think you “like this kind of music” or not. It is holy, and it changes you. It was so transformative that I now understand “the Land” in a different aspect, m ore of a verb—it is the ground that grounds us; the place where we can finally Land—into our individual and collective bodies.

That grounding, rooted in deep self-knowledge of female realities, is born of the continuity of female knowledge and power built over the Festival’s near-40-year history. It turns out that when you stop demonizing your elder women or patronizing them as ignorant dinosaurs, and you go hang out with them in the woods instead—they show up and mentor you in ways you thought only happened for boys in novels and movies. Real mentoring. How they managed to convey what they did over the course of a measly week is beyond me—but the Old Womyn of Fest went to bat for me, showed up for me, paid a higher quality of attention than I’ve ever known, and fed me—emotionally, spiritually, conversationally, with their creative offerings, and with steak cooked rare so that I was well nourished while doing heavy warrior work. And they did this not because it’s old women’s job to be caretakers, but because they were inviting us in, with pride, to take part in what they’d built—because they know that what they have fought to make is worth passing on, and they want to invite our hands to help carry it forward into the future. I used to dream about this kind of support and offer of legacy, but I’d met enough of my former heroes to consider it a pipe dream. Come to find out, sheroes are another matter entirely. I had so much support that it was hard to absorb. I can’t overstate the impact of being surrounded by packs of wild, brilliant, gorgeous, Old women.

So much of female socialization is the kind of trauma that precludes any sense of a future. To see wild Old women in a state of matriarchal nature is a phenomenal antidote. They showed me a future worth having. They gave me so much to admire—the toughness born of their resilience; the way they’ve honed t heir skills at listening, thinking, loving, politics, life; the way they’ve deepened into themselves; the way they inhabit their bodies; their attunement to their strengths and limitations. All of it was beyond beautiful and it moved me somewhere entirely new.

When I was a teenage Leslie Feinberg fan”boy,” I read that essay she wrote about Michigan. The language about border policing and wrong bodies made me feel so afraid. I believed what everyone in that scene said about Michfest—that they’d panty-check anyone who seemed “off” or “wrong”—and if there was one thing I dead knew about myself then, it was that I was the embodiment of “off” and “wrong.”

Without getting too personal, I grew up with a significantly atypical female body. In my “queer” subculture, I was taught—and I believed—that I would not pass muster to enter the supposedly purist gates of the F est, on this basis. This is not to mention that with Leslie Feinberg making the critique, there was also the implication that if you didn’t comply with directives on male-defined “femininity,” you would not be welcome. I believed the lie that a gender-defined space was required for my liberation. But the fact is, where the focus is “gender” I will always be relegated to the position of human Rorschach blot. In fact, at Fest, where the boundary is sex-defined, I find the only possible space to be free of that burden.

This is the thing I have to say about what the Festival’s Intention means to me: as a female outlier living in mensland, I learned over and over that I was Wrong, and that I could not belong. Not woman enough, not man either. Because men define these things a certain way. A woman is not just an adult human female—oh no. Men have a lot more parameters than that! And it’s never enough to be a woman, you have to be the “right kind,” too. The rules for what makes you “right” enough are always changing, of course—it’s a moving goalpost on purpose to keep us all off balance, constantly checking ourselves. They are the ones running the world like a gauntlet of panty-checks and whole-body-checks, besides—let’s be clear on that. They are the ones drawing borders and policing them. They are the ones leaving so many women out in so many kinds of cold. 

At Fest, there is no wrong way to be a human female. The entire goddamn point is for as many human females to gather as possible so that we can see the richness of our diversity, all of the different ways that a woman can be. Because of this, Fest is the ultimate HAVEN for female outliers—physical outliers, “gender” outliers, dykes, and other Others—as much if not more than it’s a haven for women who fall squarely into what mensland rec ognizes as such in an uncomplicated way. 

Got a beard, a mustache? You’re not alone at Fest—lots of women will be wearing theirs openly, and plenty more will admire you—not despite it, either. Pass as male without T and without even meaning to? Welcome home; nobody will question your belonging here. To the contrary of the “panty-check” rumor, Fest is one magical place on earth where you will not have that “restroom moment” ANYWHERE. You know, the moment where some freaked out lady tells you that you’re in the wrong place and you feel you have to flash your boobs at her or talk so she hears your high voice or show her your ID so she knows you are not a man. For a detransitioned woman especially, NONE OF THE ABOVE MAY EVEN BE AVAILABLE OPTIONS ANYMORE in mensland, so it makes this Place absolutely unique in its ability to hold women of this experience. 

It is possible to transition medically to the point wher e the general world will not ever recognize you as female anymore, or at least—not easily. At Fest, you can still be seen and recognized as a woman, if you just show up. In fact, contrary to the rumors, there are really only two laws of the Land—one, nobody can drive a vehicle over 5 miles per hour; and two, nobody can question anyone else’s gender on the Land.

There is no “WHAT ARE YOU?” at Fest. Fest is The Place where your very presence answers that incessant, eternal question so you never have to.

Oh. Except for one thing: because I know that some males decide to deliberately violate the intention of the gathering, I looked with suspicion at some of the other women there. I scanned their bodies for signs of femaleness, to calm my nervous system. That is SUPREMELY messed up. That is exactly how I hoped nobody would regard me. But because some males insist on showing up at Fest in violation of the intention, they sow this seed of do ubt and fear. This hyper-vigilance that I could otherwise lay down actually went on overdrive—because if you are a male who deliberately violates female boundaries, then you are exactly who I am most afraid of, for very legitimate reason, regardless of your “gender identity.” And I say this not out of ignorance, but direct experience, including being an erstwhile member of the trans community. Sex is real and it matters; all males who violate female boundaries scare me. I will never feel safe around that behavior; I do not want to be coerced to attempt it. In that attempt I lose my very breath. In the words of poet Dionne Brand, “If I am peaceful…is not peace,/is getting used to harm.”

When I listened to Nedra Johnson sing, “First time I came to Festival, I learned I’d always been afraid/Finally laid that burden down; I could not believe the weight,” I so wanted to experience that feeling. I know how heavy this one is for me . That fear has been with me for longer than I can remember. It is older than language, in my body. But that’s not the burden I got relieved of; because I knew that there were some males present who clearly, demonstrably felt entitled to violate female boundaries. So I still carried that fear on the Land. Not as much as out here—I went for late night walks on the Land. But I didn’t go alone and I didn’t go unarmed. It made me sad that this felt necessary, but the violation itself is traumatic enough, regardless of any additional actions. That said, I took heart in knowing that I was surrounded by many women I would trust to respond appropriately if I needed help. That’s worth a lot. It is a material difference.

And I did get to put something very heavy down on that Land. The burden I got relieved of was shame about my body. So when I sing along to Nedra’s song in my T-scarred voice, I sing, “First time I came to Festival, I lear ned I’d always been ashamed.” I hope Nedra doesn’t mind the liberty I take with her lyric. I truly could not believe the weight of the shame I let go of There.

Being atypical, I really did not believe I belonged in the category of “female.” I grew up thinking I was a monster. It is really hard for me to talk about my body anyway, but when males, on the basis of their trans identities, claim to have been female from birth; when they talk about their bodies as outlier female bodies (for example, when they say their dicks are “just very large clits,” or when they say, “I am just a DIFFERENT KIND of female with a different KIND of female body,”), it actually becomes impossible for me to name my reality at all. They are using the only words I can use to explain my experience, and they are using them to mean the exact opposite of what I need them to mean, in order for me to be sayable, to even be thinkable. What they reser ve for metaphor makes my literal naming incomprehensible. Regardless of “gender identity,” what they actually are is male; what I actually am is female. To deny this only makes any redress of our actual, specific grievances, impossible. And the distinction matters to me in large part because it was so brutally difficult for me to get to the point where I could know that I am female—that my differences may sometimes put me at a margin, but that I still belong in this word. That I am just as much a standard as any other female, in my way. I have known this intellectually but it is different to be at Michigan, mirrored by many other Selves who teach you by their Being. Now that I finally know this, not only in my mind but from within all the borders of my own body, I want to scream, “You cannot stand in the exact spot I am standing in without standing on me.

On the internet I don’t bother too much with this be cause I can’t prove I’m an atypical female rather than a male telling tall tales; on the Land it was different. Women saw me; they recognized me and they understood that what I said was true. They knew it was truth because truth Lands differently than bullshit. They heard my story and they knew I was talking about another variety of female socialization, not male projections, stories, lies, or narratives of any kind. There is a difference. The conflation of male trans experiences with the experiences of female outliers and with intersex people is erasure by appropriation. Many males with trans identities use intersex as a talking point for why they belong on the Land, but it really has jack-all to do with their argument and I suspect they know it. Women with AIS or CAH (for example) haven’t been protesting for inclusion on that basis; such a protest would be incomprehensible, because these experiences are already inherently part and parcel of the Intent ion. The boundaries of Fest are not identity-based, but about material, sex-based reality; providing haven and healing on that basis. Understanding women with intersex traits/conditions/DSDs as belonging There—if they themselves see it that way—is a given. Like I said, if anything, atypical and outlier women of all kinds have an even greater degree of haven.

So—outside of the mistrust and suspicion that is sown by males who deliberately violate the female boundaries set by Fest, there is no WHAT ARE YOU on the Land. What you are is a womon, and a sister, and the daughter of this Place. I say daughter because this Place acts like every idea you never let yourself have about a real Mother Goddess; every idea you never let yourself have because you needed Her too much to let yourself feel that when you didn’t believe that need could ever be met in this life.

You know that old therapy joke, If it’s not one thing, it’s your mothe r? You know how the national pastime of the USA is mother-blaming? You know how you have this well of bottomless need that you want to put on your mom even though she’s just one person doing the very best she can and it’s never going to be good enough? You know the old saw about it taking a village to raise a child? 

Can you imagine being held in the kind of security that comes from being mothered by something outside of the bounds of time and space that constrained your human mother? Can you imagine being mothered by something that isn’t passing on patriarchal damage along with life-giving milk? Can you imagine being mothered by something that doesn’t require you to cut off pieces of yourself in order to receive the care you need?

I don’t have to imagine this anymore; I have known it. And because of this I can start to glimpse for the first time, flashes of an answer to questions like, “Who would I be if I had been raised with perfect love and support?” “Who would I be if I had not been harmed and twisted?” “Who would I be if I had never been measured against a toxic standard?” “Who would I be if I had not grown up fearing rape?” “Who would I be if I had not had to spend so many years on simply trying to survive, heal, and recover?” Those questions start to get a lot less rhetorical, in light of Fest. The nourishment seems to be unbound by space/time limitations—it seems to reach back to all of my past selves who most need to be fed.

What I am left with is this bitter question: “Who would I be if I had not been lied to and kept from this Place for all these years?”

I believe I would be speaking and singing in a voice nobody will ever hear again, a voice I altered with testosterone instead. I believe my body would be more typical for my chronological age, and not frequently disabled by chronic pain. I believe I would have ha d the chance to manage and learn the logic of the odd hormonal balance I carried before I disrupted and obscured it by adding T. I believe I would speak from the position of having recovered my sense of bodily integrity, instead of living with the knowledge that I colluded in my own erasure by medical “normalizing.” I believe I would be a hell of a lot less alone.

It is not possible to really know how to love yourself with abandon and without condition—until you have been loved that way first. And I have been loved that way—courageously, with the imperfect but divinely-inflected human love of the womyn of Fest, but also—perfectly, by the Fest Herself. She is more than the sum of Her parts.

I was not a “woo” person before this experience. I thought it was creepy that people capitalized “the Land.” I thought it was weird that people talked about Fest with female pronouns like a person. I thought it was all kind o f corny and embarrassing. But this isn’t any sexy pagan/martyr mommy/flowy robes/demure white lady/Giving Tree/”holy tit”/pushover/has-a- male-consort Goddess I ever heard of before. This is the Lioness who eats the faces of her enemies; this is the All for whom we are never too much; this is the butch Goddess who only consorts with Us; the dyke Goddess who knows and needs our hearts; this is the best of us all, made electric by connection; the incredible gift woven of so many women’s lives; this is, as Staceyann Chin put it, “our collective cunt.”

This is finally Landing at Home, in Family, Tribe, Belonging, Self, Wholeness, Integrity, Truth and Trust. I don’t care if I sound like Dr. Bronner. This is real. 

And I don’t care which dumb Gay, Inc. or sham “lesbian” organization (*cough* NCLR) tries to make it “wrong.” I need Her. We need Her. And She will go on, powered by Us.

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Anonymous asked: I was trying to ask if you would have considered that to be changing your sex.

If I could get an operation that allowed me to get pregnant, I would be psyched because then my bf and I could just pump out some kids, and it would save me a lot of heartache/headache/money etc over adoption. (Assuming this uterus operation wasn’t insanely expensive, which of course it would be.)

In a practical sense, that would make my life easier. But tbh I still don’t think I would have really changed sex, because I’m pretty sure my relationship with my body would be seriously different from basically any other woman ever, since I spent 30+ years not worrying about being raped and 40+ years not worrying about accidental pregnancy.

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Anonymous asked: And how do feminists you know/have relationships with feel about calling yourself a feminist?

All of my irl feminist friends, including radical feminist friends, are fine with that. If they weren’t, I would rethink it. (And I want to be clear: this includes radical feminist friends who are heavily involved in female-only spaces, where I would definitely not be welcome.) Other radical feminists who I am not friends with might be upset about it. That’s something I live with.

I don’t want to do anything that harms women but as I said I think that not publicly identifying as a feminist in my day-to-day life would be more harmful to women-as-a-class than referring to myself as feminist, even though I am male. I would be happy to have this convo irl, but not necessarily on the internet in relation to my anonymous blog, if that makes sense. Life is complicated.

I will say that sometimes I want to write “Male feminists lol” on my blog, and then I don’t write that for obvious reasons. Except, again, life is complicated.

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Anonymous asked: Hi, I'm a mtf and my experience is very unusual but I'll cut to the chase. I've been on HRT for a very long time because it alleviates some of the pain but I haven't transitioned because I'm certain that I would never pass. My dysphoria only gets stronger with time but I feel stuck, I want to transition but I'm afraid that I wouldn't feel any better about myself and my body, with the added benefit of being ostracized for being visibly trans. Can you offer any advice?

Hi anon, thanks for writing.

I think it is really normal and healthy that you are considering how passing or not passing would impact your life, if you decided to transition. This is a reality that all transitioning trans women have to deal with. It has the potential to be really upsetting if your transition doesn’t meet your expectations, or if you begin to face undue amounts of harassment.

However, you may want to examine those two things car efully. What are your expectations in transition? If you don’t think you’ll be able to pass, then you will probably never blend in/be able to go stealth. However, there is a whole range of experiences of trans women who even though they are visibly trans, are accepted by other people as being sincere in their wish to live socially as women. I’ve known plenty of trans women who didn’t pass but also didn’t seem to have that many problems day-to-day - strangers would sort of note “Oh, she’s different”, and usually kind of leave it at that.

You may also want to think about how likely you are to face threats and harassment. Trans activist like Parker Molloy, Julia Serrano, and Janet Mock LOVE to overstate the amount of grief they get, because they think that being a victim “validates their womanhood”. (Remember: Janet Mock said that when she was sexually molested as a child, she was being “treated like a girl”. F ucking yikes!) The reality is that if you are white, college educated, and have a modicum of social skills, you are probably not going to have that hard of a time. Likewise, when I was younger I had a lot of black trans girl friends who were pretty well-known around their neighborhoods as being trans and also didn’t have that many problems (in their own neighborhoods anyway - dealing with white cops and white johns was a different story).

Finally, you may want to think about expanding your gender presentation, rather than “transitioning” as if it is binary. The most important thing is to find a way of expressing yourself that feels comfortable and that helps you to be better socially integrated and more effective in life.

Good luck!

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Anonymous asked: Hi Snowflake. I was wondering if ftm trans men were welcome to participate in New Narratives or if it's a trans woman only space? Either way, I wanted you to know I support the work you do. You're one of my role models. Thank you for everything!

Hi anon, thanks for your sweet note!

We wanted New Narratives to be a trans-woman only event (or hopefully series of events…), specifically because we felt like our house was super dirty and we needed to clean up our dirty laundry. And, knowing the fragility of male egos, it might be hard to do that in a mixed-sex setting! ;)

Personally, I would love it if there were more gender-critical discussion groups that were mixed sex. As different as the experiences of female and male trans people are, my discussions with ftm and female detransitioner friends have been HUGELY helpful in understanding my own life - both in terms of illuminating common experiences, and helpin g to understand how profound some of our differences are.

best wishes!

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Anonymous asked: I don't know if I'm missing something where it's a term used when arguing about this stuff, but the "100% male rationalist idiocy" line stood out to me. Are they claiming that your position is rational, and also that only men can be rational, and therefore you're not a woman and also wrong about the thing you're being rational about?

zjemptv:

I’ve encountered this before, from someone who was unable to provide any evidence that cis women were in actual danger due to trans women in restrooms. When I pointed out that their concerns appeared to be completely baseless and thus irrelevant to policy, they then proposed a process of “building consensus” - which they told me was “often found in groups run by women”, in which “people with concerns shar e them and solutions are found that everybody can live with”. In other words, it’s an arena of pure opinion where facts have no power to invalidate any “concern”.

Such notions of “building consensus” and “male rationalist idiocy” accomplish two things:

1. Reinforcing gender essentialism and sexism by claiming that men and women are inherently predisposed to, and more skilled at, different kinds of cognition and behavior - ‘men think like this, women think like that’.

2. Reinforcing misogyny by implying that women are averse to rationality, dismissive of reality, and interested solely in their own free-floating opinions.

None of this seems particularly radical, or feminist. It’s just repackaged patriarchy.

Zinnia, you are so much stupider than you think you are, I honestly sometimes feel sorry for you.

It is a FACT that males (including trans women) commit violent crime at statistically significantly higher rates than females - including trans men. Over the last week on tumblr, we all saw Sylvia Rivera Law Project get in hot water for defending a trans woman who shoved a raped, murdered thirteen year old girl into a diaper box and then set it on fire. Actually, pretty sure you were defending this same sick fuck in your original asinine Hitler post!

However, you don’t like it that women don’t think your dick is female, so you ignore the FACT of male violence, and the FACT that you creep a lot of women out with your endless selfie ass pics that you jerk off to, so you instead adopt a “rationalist” mindset. If you weren’t such an insufferable asshole, it would be super funny - because all your “rational” opinions are based on a highly edited version of reality, which always centers you and your wants and desires.

So let me break it down for you and your anon: as far as I can tell, “rationalism” on the internet means a dude endlessly mansplaining, who thinks he has all the facts but is actually hilariously out of touch. And yes, this tends to be a male thing - because women tend to listen to each other, and trust what other women say. That’s kind of what the “building concensus” thing means - though I can’t imagine you’d know that, because if I had to wager I’d say you’ve never hung out in a group of women where you weren’t the focus. Probably, because you’re incapable o f listening to women. (Maybe you’ll listen to me, since I’m a trans woman, but I doubt it.)

Anyway, go ahead and say it’s “patriarchy” when people point out that you are a gender-conforming male with a sexual fetish, who thinks and behaves like any other gender-conforming male with zero empathy. (Which is exactly what you are, except for the hormones.) And by all means, keep complaining about “silly women” and their consensus, like the nice guy you are. (btw - why don’t you wear a fedora in your videos?) To be honest, everyone with half a brain is laughing at you.

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collaterlysisters:

kyriarchy:

appropriately-inappropriate:

hexualsealing:

of course the terfs have capitalised on the monetizeyourcat thing. of course they use it as evidence that if you are a “tumblr sj genderspecial male” you are probably an abuser, a coward and a hypocrite. i hate terfs so fucking much

Well, this isn’t the first time th e gender…

I don’t know who the fuck those people are or what they have to do with “our lot”, and it’s not really relevant to issue here, which is that radical feminists, yourself included note, are exploiting trans victims of sexual abuse in order to attack them for being trans. this is textbook victim blaming but you’ve got your head rammed too far up your ideology to recognize it.

as I now have the unenviable distinction of having known two trans women with a history of sexual predation I can note that both favored other trans women as marks

presumably due to shared culture and intimate knowledge of our vulnerable, unprotected status

the trans community thanks the cracked-out cat ladies of feminism for their heartfelt concern for victims of intra-community violence. We are pleased with your totally genuine concern, which can’t possibly be an exercise in distasteful straw-grabbing by people who to this day can’t name a single documented incident of Bathroom Peril. Have a wonderful day.

Hey CS! I don’t really understand your blog - because you say a lot of really smart things sometimes, but then when (female) women say things that you don’t like, your comments basically read to me like “dumb bitches should shut up”. Really?

You’re a scientist, so listen to science: It’s a fact that trans women commit violent crime at the same rate as all males - which as you know, is epidemic in proportion. It’s also a fact that the list of trans woman rapists, child murderers, child porn fans, child rapists, etc etc is so long we can’t even keep an accurate list. (Here is a short one which is missing a lot of our sisters seriously fucked up dudes who I personally have ZERO in common with except for taking hormones. Do you really feel like you have something in common with them? Yikes.)

I agree that there is an epidemic of trans women who are sexual predators on other trans women - and I’m not talking about “copping a feel while I was stoned and having a bad dysphoria day”, I’m talking about sexually assaulting trans kids and teens, rape, and physical abuse.

But there is ALSO an epidemic of trans women raping and murdering women born female. Let’s be real, ok? Thanks!!

Also: there are literally 1000 trans women/cross dressers on this list who got arrested for perving on women in the women’s bathroom. So please stop saying “it never happens”, ok? Thanks!!!

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Whelp ok, so you’re hypocritical and an asshole.

Thanks for your insightful commentary!

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Anonymous asked: Do you think it would ever be possible to change your sex? I'm talking in a most likely hypothetical world. I realize most of the changes transitioning brings is aesthetic. But if we lived in a world where trans women could become pregnant, have periods, and naturally produce estrogen and trans men could produce sperm and testosterone, do you think that would count as changing your sex? Because I would.

If we lived in a world where people could change sex, then people could change sex.

How could I disagree? That’s a tautology.

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Anonymous asked: Males can't be feminists, I'm sure you realize that. Do you have anything to say about it?

I think men (meaning: males who live socially as men) can be allies to women, but not feminists. Most trans women seem to have more in common with men than with women and should not call themselves feminists. And some trans women fetishize women’s oppression and should NEVER call themselves feminists, or even allies.

I am not a radical feminist and I would never claim that label, though radical feminism (and lesbian separatism) are probably my biggest influences in terms of how I think about feminism. I do refer to myself as a feminist in my day-to-day life; if I didn’t refer to myself as a feminist, I would be really dropping the ball given that I work in a male-dominated field which is super sexist, and people usually assume I’m female. I also refer to myself as a feminist on my blog, because a lot of the issu es I write about are issues I face at the intersection of having been a gender non-conforming male who has now spent the majority of my life living as a girl/woman and generally being perceived female.

I’m not saying I’m special but on the other hand I named my blog what I named it for a reason.

Hope that answers your question?

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Anonymous asked: Based on things you reblog, it's clear that you don't even think trans women are women so what's even the point then? Why should anyone call you by female pronouns if that's how you feel? Because you tell them to?

What are you talking about? I don’t think you’ve taken the time to read many of my original posts - which I admit, I haven’t been publishing as many of recently.

I think some trans women are women. I think most trans women probably aren’t women. I acknowledge the fact that zero trans women are female. However, some trans women are assumed to be female by others - that’s how they end up being “women” in a social sense.

I haven’t told anyone to call me any pronoun in a very long time. People refer to me with female pronouns because they usually appear to think I am physically female, and because after living this way for 20+ years I have been (mostly) resoci alized as a woman. Meaning, even though I am gender non-conforming for a woman in certain ways, overall I fulfill the social role “woman”. I don’t know that I will pass for the rest of my life, and I don’t know whether I will choose to stop living stealth at some point. But this is where I’m at right now.

I contrast my own life experience with trans activist like Parker Molloy and Zinnia Jones who have meltdowns when people “misgender” them, but simultaneously deny they are male (despite routinely posting dick pics, in ZJ’s case) or that they were socialized male. Parker and Zinnia are always requesting to be referred to as female, and they will FLIP OUT if you don’t go along with them. That’s not me.

Actually, I’m fine admitting that I was socialized male! And even after the “sex change”, my underlying physiology is male. Being able to say those things doesn’t mean I hate myself: it means I am at peace with the world, and I have a grip on reality.

Best wishes, anon.

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