In light of last week’s Transgender Day of Visibility events, I wanted to shed some light on some of the common myths, assumptions, and otherwise bullshit statements that I’ve heard recently.
Each of these 10 statements was inspired by true comments/questions I have heard and this is my attempt to help fix that, one little blog post at a time.
- Gender identity is different than sexual orientation. Who I am has nothing to do with who I want to sleep with. Being trans doesn’t make someone gay any more than being tall makes you a lesbian.
- Stop using and asking about deadnames. I don’t think ignorance is an excuse for this one. Frankly, I’d be much less agitated if you asked me to give you my blood type or first born child.
- Trannie. …Just don’t be a jackass. K?
- Surgery is not required to transition. People often associate ‘transitioning’ and ‘being trans’ with having a surgery. While a lot of us do elect to have some sort of surgery done, there are plenty of people who haven’t gotten to that point, or elect not to at all, and they’re just as valid as the rest of us. It’s not necessarily a package deal.
- Not all transgender individuals elect to use HRT (Hormone Replacement Therapy). Again, not all transgender individuals want the same results, and not everyone elects to use testosterone/estrogen. It’s important to realize and respect that everyone’s journey is their own, and to respect that.
- Gender is not black and white. Not all transgender individuals aim to fit into the gender binary. Gender is more complex than ‘male’ and ‘female’ and the world is starting to notice this. Not everyone wants to ‘pass’ and fit into typical gender roles – and that’s okay. So deal with it.
- Transgender women of color need our help. Transgender women of color face the highest rate of discrimination, violence and murder among the community – by far. At least 8 reported TWOC have been murdered so far in 2017. While I appreciate you reading my blog, you need to understand that being white gives me privilege. We’re not fighting for me – I’m fine, I can survive. We’re fighting for them. I encourage you to at least go check out and follow the TWOC Collective on Facebook.
- What’s in my pants is absolutely none of your business unless we are going to sleep together. Does this really need an explanation?
- Bathroom laws pose a serious threat. Both to the trans community, and society as a whole. Guess what? We’ve been peeing wherever we want to this whole time and no one has gotten hurt. Now, thanks to jackasses instilling fear tactics to generate a following, we are placing bounties on the heads of transgender people, and putting cis people in danger as well.
- We are not mentally ill and we don’t need to be cured. This one isn’t worth an explanation either, but I included it to remind you that there are still plenty of people out there who truly and honestly believe this.
Allies & the larger community, please educate yourself and share our voices.