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Author Topic: What if Your Kids...  (Read 22183 times)
mandrina
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« Reply #90: November 19, 2010, 09:52:35 am »

It's not really 'so they will have a bigger voice', it's a result of history.  As I understand it, some of the seminal figures in the gay rights movement - such as the people involved in Stonewall - were trans women.  Back when both groups were heavily stigmatised, the borders between them were a lot less clear, and while a lot of, say, drag queens were gay men, a lot of them were also trans women trying to make the best life for themselves that they could at the time.

As gayness got more "normal" and transness remained extremely marginalised, there has been a certain amount of, hrrr, social purification in the movement.  A certain subset of gay rights activists treat trans people as interlopers trying to hitchhike on the movement, rather than there from the beginning, and people believe them, because there's been this systematic cleansing and de-transing of the social history.  The ones that don't come out and say that they're a cis gay movement (the ones that do are often strictly a gay movement, and are dubious about bisexuals as well; the ones I know about are also gay men, and do not really include lesbians either) often sort of forget to consider trans folks.  As a result of this, a lot of trans people are trying to figure out how to do advocacy that doesn't depend on the historical ties with the queer community.

This connection persists because it's still a lot easier to come out as gay than it is to come out as trans, so a lot of straight or bi trans folk start out in the queer community prior to transition.  And what to do with those people after transition is one of the major screaming fits that I've observed - consider the Michigan Women's Folk Festival, which has a supposedly "women-only" policy that allows trans men in and bars trans women from attendance.

Of course, queer trans folks (like my sister) are completely screwed over by this situation.  THe fundie gay groups don't want her because she's trans; if they respect the trans-ness, well, she's married to a woman, and out of the scope of the consideration the cis gay guys want to give the universe; if they don't respect the trans-ness, well, she's married to a woman, so she's straight and should go away.

I'm going to ask a dumb quesiton here, so I can parse everything correctly. 

a transwoman is one who started out identified male but selfidentifies female and at least dresses that way, if not yet having done the rest of the work to become physically female.

A transmale is one who started out identified female, but who selfidentifies male and at least dresses that way, if not yet having done the rest of the work to become physically male.

So your sister started out life identified by the world as your brother, but self identifies female, has done the trans bit, and happens to be gay by selfidentification as well
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Darkhawk
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« Reply #91: November 19, 2010, 10:39:15 am »

a transwoman is one who started out identified male but selfidentifies female and at least dresses that way, if not yet having done the rest of the work to become physically female.

A trans woman, yes.  It's an adjective.  (I mean, I'm not a paganwoman.)  How actively a trans woman will go to effort to, say, wear specifically feminized clothing varies a lot, and in the past a trans woman would have to present as femme (and straight!) in order to get access to medical assistance with her transition.

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So your sister started out life identified by the world as your brother, but self identifies female, has done the trans bit, and happens to be gay by selfidentification as well

Actually, she wasn't my sister back then, we're not biologically related - we adopted each other a few years ago.  But yes: she was assumed to be male at birth, went through a hell of a lot of crap, and now is successfully perceived as female by most people.  Her wife is also female. Wink  (I was at their wedding this summer.)

Interestingly on a mysticism front, her mother was so convinced she was having a daughter that they didn't pick out a male name.
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catherine
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« Reply #92: November 19, 2010, 10:45:10 am »


Not a direct response to you, Darkhawk, but your statement... sort of... fits with something I've often wondered about. So, I'm hanging my post here.

If my son had turned out to be gay, I would have been perfectly fine with it. If he had turned out to be trans, I think we would have had a long road ahead of us, but I would have supported his choice and loved him just the same. However, my gay dads would have had fits! I know this, because we talked about it. They would have had a really difficult time accepting it if he were gay, though I think they would have eventually. But Transgendered? No way. They always said that being gay was a really hard life that they wouldn't wish on their kids or grand kids, but that being trans was somehow some kind of psychological illness or something. They also didn't like men who were more effeminate, they called them "little ladies". I used to argue with them about these sorts of things all the time.

Don't get me wrong. They would have never said these things outside of their own home, or to anyone who would be hurt by it. It's just how they felt, personally.

My dad is 70 years old and he's mellowed quite a bit since my step dad died. He's much more "out" now than he ever was, but he still has issues with certain things. So I wonder, is this kind of bigotry a generational thing?

Any thoughts?
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Mandi
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« Reply #93: November 19, 2010, 09:34:36 pm »


What is making you twitch about the lack of "separating out based on whether one is dealing with an orientation issue (GLB) or an identity issue (transgender)"?

Is it that it seems that people are lumping two different issues together, when they shouldn't be?  Or that people are focusing on one issue and ignoring the other?  Or something else?


Because change is hard.  Bringing new rules based upon a persons self definition - how you want to be interacted with and treated, is hard ground to break.  Finding those boundaries and hammering out how the relationship between you and a child who has found the current arrangement as stood till now is not satisfactory needs to be tailored can seem like a hurdle to jump and as a parent you sort of go oh man.  Do we have to?
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I'm gonna tell my son to join a circus so that death is cheap
And games are just another way of life
And I'm gonna tell my son to be a prophet of mistakes
Because for every truth there are half a million lies
And I'm gonna lock my son up in a tower
Till he learns to let his hair down far enough to climb outside.
-LIz Pahir
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« Reply #94: November 19, 2010, 10:01:58 pm »

Because change is hard.  Bringing new rules based upon a persons self definition - how you want to be interacted with and treated, is hard ground to break.  Finding those boundaries and hammering out how the relationship between you and a child who has found the current arrangement as stood till now is not satisfactory needs to be tailored can seem like a hurdle to jump and as a parent you sort of go oh man.  Do we have to?

I'm not sure I understand your response.

I was asking what part of the thread and its posts was disturbing Sunflower.

You seem to be addressing the discomfort a parent might feel when learning his/her child is gay or trans.  Or am I misunderstanding your post?

~ Aster
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Mandi
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« Reply #95: November 22, 2010, 09:54:08 pm »

I'm not sure I understand your response.



You seem to be addressing the discomfort a parent might feel when learning his/her child is gay or trans.  Or am I misunderstanding your post?

~ Aster

When addressing orientation, versus identity;  I left out the not Sunflower part, but what would be a challenge for me would be needing to change how I interacted with my child as they went through the process of integrating the changes in their identity.  It would be horribly uncomfortable having to go through feeling out a new system where the previous modes of interaction based upon the identities of the persons involved no longer fit.

It would be equally challenging to have your kid declare themselves strict veggie or Kosher and hammering out how much accommodation they desired *for me* but again, that was a knee jerk moment of going ohhh man, you weren't hard enough to parent before!
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I'm gonna tell my son to join a circus so that death is cheap
And games are just another way of life
And I'm gonna tell my son to be a prophet of mistakes
Because for every truth there are half a million lies
And I'm gonna lock my son up in a tower
Till he learns to let his hair down far enough to climb outside.
-LIz Pahir

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