I Don’t Need To Go To Paris

I can stay right here,
no passport, no visa
no access to that fairytale
land of opportunity and liberty

I don’t need to go to Paris
to find those willing
to gun me down, blow me up,
kill me in the name
of their bloodthirsty god
called gender.

Those terrorists
walk the streets
of my world behind
white faces, middle class manners
and smirks to rival the Riddler’s.

Paris comes to me
everyday.

The Truth About Transgender Suicide | Brynn Tannehill

“Suicidal behaviors in LGBT populations appear to be related to “minority stress”, which stems from the cultural and social prejudice attached to minority sexual orientation and gender identity.

“This stress includes individual experiences of prejudice or discrimination, such as family rejection, harassment, bullying, violence, and victimization. Increasingly recognized as an aspect of minority stress is “institutional discrimination” resulting from laws and public policies that create inequities or omit LGBT people from benefits and protections afforded others.

“Individual and institutional discrimination have been found to be associated with social isolation, low self-esteem, negative sexual/gender identity, and depression, anxiety, and other mental disorders.

“These negative outcomes, rather than minority sexual orientation or gender identity per se, appear to be the key risk factors for LGBT suicidal ideation and behavior.”

Source: The Truth About Transgender Suicide | Brynn Tannehill

This.

I am sharing this truly scintillating essay, and the pull quote above is the core for me.

I just wanna say that I was raised white, though thru my father there is a truly multi-cultural heritage biologically and racially…but I was…raised white. Fortunately for me, I was never inculcated with racist bull shit, to the point that in college in the 80s I had a dear friend literally shock me when he told me I was the least racist person he had ever met…and yes, I did hear and note his use of the word “least”…which said volumes to me but in a language that I could not decipher or understand.

Well…since coming to terms with myself and understanding my gender journey, my life has changed in shattering ways, stunning and transcendent ways…but most importantly of all I was delivered from the ocean at last…

and became aware of so much that I never knew, could never see, even as a fish in the sea has no clue that it is in the sea.

I understand the comment of my friend now…”least racist”.

I wish I had the words and ways to let my friends, acquaintances and loved ones who are subject to that which they are subject to for the absolute worst and most insignificant of reasons KNOW that I get it now…

Oh, I will NEVER get it for the reason that they are made subject, anymore than any cis-gender person will ever “get it” in any way other than developing a deep and sincere sympathy and resolute commitment to love and live that love…

But I do get it now, the persecution, the othering, the abuse, the hatred and the fucking demonic unreasoning irrational stupidity of those besotted and drunk on the luck of the draw and the fate of biology.

My friends, and you know who you are…this post is for you…may I always find the joy I have found in solidarity with you and the love of your deep suns of being that shine undefeated and undefeatable! May I always have the heart, the eyes to see and to be inspired time and again with your indomitable spirit, will, but most of all your LOVE which just fucking never quits, CAN never quit.

You have no idea, the moments you have dragged me thru…you bearing the hate directed at you due to skin and me bearing the hate directed at me due to a variation on skin but essentially a common thing we walk in…times I was on the way out, and I would read sumfin, hear sumfin, think of sumfin…and be inspired and lifted up in your heart of hearts.

Now? I can at least have the means to find the remaining privilege I have and divest myself of it intentionally…it doesn’t always go, it is stuck to my skin color…but at last it is not stuck to me.

I regret only that it took as long as it did for my understanding and seeing eyes to catch up to what my heart must have known for my friend to tell me what he told me. We intersect…and for the rest of my days on earth I am expanding that intersection with every ounce of love, faith, hope, grace and mercy that is mine.

To the rest of my friends: please take it in faith that your privilege is there, is stuck to you, and is a legacy that you can use if you will but set your heart in a frame of humility and ask that your eyes be opened…hopefully you will gain insight without experiencing it being ripped away…but if that is what it takes, it is better that this occur rather than go thru your life blind while thinking you see.tumblr_lh6nzks1YS1qgnixvo1_1280

Between Me And The Fire

there is always something
some thing that stands
between me and the fire
and casts a shadow that lies
on my face, a caul, a veiltumblr_mdicq83JjD1qfllfmo1_500it’s been called mask
and I bat at it, swat at it
the ninja master of
when you walk face-first
into spiderwebs
you never saw

but flail to no avail
to claw away this veil
(the caul)

me and my desire
(the fire)
and the thing
(whatever fits)
between me and the fire
tumblr_nuoplsUK3F1tijmqfo1_500

me and body
me and love
me and longing

i cannot get to it
(the fire)
so i can dive into it
(and burn and burn and)

so instead i move sideways
around the thing and to the water
that waits for me placid, peaceful
yielding inviting thirsty
for metumblr_nvi0baXuRN1trdezwo1_400it will drink of me
it will be one with me
it will give me itself for my body
it will marry me
(not just the idea of me)

and the flowers will sing
(they float)
and my dress shall dissolve
and my veil shall away

so that my breath
and my body
and the water
at last
become
one

tumblr_nov8utHEU81r4dhceo1_1280

 Kintsukuroi

time is the greatest distance
between two distant places…

me then.  me now.

Today I am grateful
for that excruciating
powerlessness I felt
over and over
again and again

as a young child
and I would just cry
and cry and just cry
and I would just try
and try and just try
to summon some presence
in the midst of such absence.

Today, I know how to
think differently, how to
give up, how to
lose hope without (how to)
losing Hope.

Then I was empty,
and full of a void
inside the abyss.

Today I am flexible
dynamic, resilient,
I am a willow
and never an oak
and my golden harps
which were hung
on my branches
forgotten and rusty
are now soft being
strummed by Hands
not yet seen playing
songs of resilience.

Today I feel grateful
for knowing incredible
unutterable sadness,
washing in ocean waves
of the world’s sorrow
and my growing awareness,
of dissolving, surrender,
of letting go over
and over again.

All my jagged pieces
pulled out and untangled
untwisted unwrapped
washed clean of the muck
so healing can commence

The astonishing village where little girls turn into boys aged 12

Source: The astonishing village where little girls turn into boys aged 12

I have never heard of this before!

But!!!

Do not miss the salient point here!!  It is NOT what is between the legs that determines gender, but what’s between the ears.

What’s the Science? | Trans-Parenting

Source: What’s the Science? | Trans-Parenting

This is a good resource page for anyone to be able to find good sources to help explain what our current technological state reveals about the physical side of gender-orientation and the reasons for this particular point on the continuum of the intersection of gender and biology.

Take a look…it will settle you if you are uncertain, and affirm you if you are already an ally.

02, 9/11/12, 2:49 PM,  8C, 5360x5432 (392+1312), 100%, Custom,  1/15 s, R49.0, G34.0, B57.0

02, 9/11/12, 2:49 PM, 8C, 5360×5432 (392+1312), 100%, Custom, 1/15 s, R49.0, G34.0, B57.0

The Crucible of Grace

If you seek to extend grace and love to cover over a multitude of sins, the worst thing you can do is undercut that extension by talking about it and pointing it out.  Right?

This weekend has been excruciating, because the long-awaited and much dreaded article outing me to the entire world was published.  And I am letting it stand uncommented on, because the person who wrote it apparently needs this as they deal, process, and move forward in becoming.tumblr_nj9hjr55am1sodq0ro1_1280But it is awful having my voice stolen from me…it is awful being portrayed as a cruel caricature of who I am and who I was…it is tragic to see the consequences of what I chose and lived twisted so tragically as life spins on by and the gravity of the Fall pulls everything to that fierce collision with nothingness…and it is heartbreaking to see the person that I literally would instantly die for, right now this moment, if it would restore them to wholeness, flail around trying to recover their bearings and watch as they grapple with emotions and choices and basically just suffer a sort of death process.

The place this article was published did not contact me (though if they had, I would have said to go ahead…my loved one needs to speak unfettered)…the things that were written, well let’s just say that one person’s account sounds right until another person in a situation gives their lived experience, and then things are usually a lot more complicated and delicate in determining “what happened”.tumblr_n892glA3he1rmz4wdo1_1280Mostly what happened?  The binary.  The binary punished me from the beginning of my life, it trapped my parents into seeing me as someone I wasn’t…it tore my soul in half and left the only option forward for me a dissociation from self and adopting performance as my currency and agency in the world…it left a bloody gaping void within me that never ever could heal, and in which the Love of God was sufficient, but only just…it led to the birth of children who deserved more and got less in spite of me trying to give them everything…

What happened was a flawed imperfect person full of hope and love and wanting only to have kids and love them and raise them up into life did her best in the skin and role of a man…and is now vilified and excoriated for this…what happened is that I was born in a time and place and culture, and practiced the things that I thought were right and true and proper, and those so at odds with what I know now, what I matured into, grew into, and yet how does that undo things that happened 30 years ago?tumblr_nrqhpzN6nu1s5u2cno1_500And what happened was so much pain in my decision to transition that an entire narrative had to shift to account for the horror and the loss of a father…and I read of things, and am painted in ways that just do not match up with what I lived, what I remember, what emails and letters say to me, what other people who knew us and were around us a lot recall…

What happened was my dysphoria and depression and despair did indeed affect my heart and soul, and that affected everyone around me, and likely was the metaphorical equivalent to belts and abuse so does it really even matter if I never did the actual things I am accused of doing?  Actually no…it doesn’t matter that I never did them, because it is clear to me that I was them…poisonous, toxic, radioactive, damned for being absent and cursed for being present and above all accountable for every last ill in those lives so precious to me.

I never really understood before why God’s answer to the horror of the Fall was to come as Jesus to this world, and suffer and die…I do now though.  Because there are no words that I can say that would explain it, justify it, make it right, make it better, disappear it…all I could do would be to simply die in their place…tumblr_nu4nj5Mkg51rdq2opo1_1280…and if I could do that, I would want it to happen hidden, without anyone knowing, and the provision of that death simply being wholeness and happiness for my hearts…

I love you, hearts…I will grieve until the day grief itself is satisfied and all things are made new.  Say on.  Whatever you need, whatever you want, whatever you must.

I only ask Mama, please hold me close and sustain me in Your Love.

Posting A Very Sobering Reflection

All…this is a post from a tumblr blog I follow, not my own writing, but her concluding question echoes many things I have written about, namely that all the “Remember the Dead Trans-girls” rallies change absolutely nothing.

We don’t want to be remembered.
We want to live…be fruitful and share life.

I don’t want you to say my name when I am killed…I want to say my own name in the zest of life!  Without fear of attack, policing, othering or rejection simply for being born.

I echo Jen’s question:  since last weekend’s events, what has changed?

PS:  Language alert!  If you are offended or defiled by scatalogical language, proceed with caution!  F-bombs and other such things are in evidence!

Maybe if…

smartassjen:

Maybe….maybe if every man who has ever hired a trans escort, if every boy who has ever beat off to trans porn, if all the guys I and thousands of others have hooked up with via Craig’s List, if the millions who fetishize our bodies, who enjoy us on our knees in bathrooms, who press us against hotel windows, who lay with us in our beds, if the men who adore me and my sisters, but only behind closed doors, would STAND THE FUCK UP AND SPEAK OUT…maybe 21 year old women just enjoying an evening out with friends wouldn’t be beat to death.

Maybe if all of you who read this, our allies and friends and colleagues and family, would call out when others make jokes at our expense, even when we’re not around, if you’d tell advertisers and producers and journalists and writers and comics that you’re not okay with them making trans women nothing but the punchline of jokes or tragic tossaways, that you know us, that we’re not disposable….maybe groups of people would stop feeling so free to harass me and my sisters, maybe crowds wouldn’t just laugh when a man spits at me, or just watch when two young men chase me down the street yelling “shemale”…maybe if you ALL stood up and said enough, maybe a young woman just being herself wouldn’t be beat to death in the streets of the supposedly best place on earth to just be yourself.
Maybe if all the gay men who act as if equality means marriage, if all the white feminists who only serve those that look like them, if all the queers who drop “TWOC” like a shibboleth but don’t know or talk to or walk beside any actual trans women of color…maybe if all of you saw what was happening here and how your actions allow it, how every moment of silence, of waiting for people of color to start the conversation about race …maybe this child could have enjoyed a few more years of being beautiful among us.

A 21 year old was beat to death in our streets. It happened because she is a woman, and of color, and transgender. It happened because our men won’t admit they love us, because our friends aren’t speaking out against the thousand little dehumanizing actions of others, because our own “LGBT” community isn’t comfortable talking about race and class.

This has to change. Now.

http://www.dnainfo.com/new-york/20130822/central-harlem/transgender-woman-dies-after-savage-beating-cops-say#video_modal_13772731841756

I wrote this two years ago.

What’s changed?

small collection of trans education resources

small collection of trans education resources for cis allies who are interested

Note:  I am posting this as an fyi, and I expect that you will read this and parse it for yourself.  My posting it here is not necessarily an endorsement of any specific person/lifestyle choice, etc.

Rather, it is in the interest of educating you that there are far more variations in that gender spectrum rainbow that stretches between those 2 poles of humanity’s gender, female and male.

“Just A Word”…It Ain’t The Hokey-Pokey!

I wrote a poem recently about an experience I had…a painful one.  It was like gravity frozen and pulling me back to a place I had long left behind.

I was misgendered.

Now this, in and of itself, is not an unusual experience.  It happens fairly regularly, though not in any way frequently, and usually it happens when strangers are interacting with me and have not had a chance to really interact with me long enough to really get the flavor of who I am.  I have learned to not let it bother me, to correct the error, and then move on.tumblr_ns0hojuTZo1qas1mto7_1280This time though, it was different…vastly different.  It was from someone whom I highly esteem, and very much like…someone I am well on the way to loving.  It happened from a friend.

Now, it was clear to me that she had simply made a mistake.  Hey, let’s be honest…if you look at my profile here at all, or on my Facebook page, you can see the tall order that I have to overcome.  Well over 6 ft tall, currently well over 220 lbs, and my forehead well on its way to a 5 or maybe even a 6 head!  HRT is kind to my brain, and somewhat more cavalier with the rest of me…progress in important areas is slow.  It’s there…but it’s slow.

And then there is my voice, forever altered by testosterone in the same way that every single human being regardless of gender has their voice altered when exposed to that hormone.

So it is easy to be “tricked” by the outward package.tumblr_ns0hojuTZo1qas1mto5_1280But the insides?  The things I talk about?  The way I talk?  My emotions, my reactions?  I was once told by a fairly femme individual that I was “girly-squared!”  We both laughed sooo hard over that, because it is true.

So that is why when I was misgendered by a friend it cut me deep…and it destroyed my confidence.  Because here are the logical alternatives.  Either A:  I am doing something that makes everyone think “man”…or B:  I am neglecting to do something that makes everyone think “woman”.  And that is what just ran at me like water washing away a riverbank.  My friend who knows my heart and knows me, who has done great things for me and made a place for me…my friend misgendered and I don’t know why.

Is there a “moment of translation” when people interact with me?  Does everyone have that inner “pause” where they have to stop and carefully think things thru in order to “be polite?”  Is that all that the correct use of pronouns boils down to?  Politeness?  I have written before about the onerous statement of “support” that says “If that is how you see it, then I am for it.”

Grrrr…I hate that statement, because cis-women do not ever have that said about their own gender.  Well, being polite is the same in this case.tumblr_ns0hojuTZo1qas1mto4_1280And it has me wondering…do all my friends have that pause, that polite moment just before they humor me?  Or do they think of me as who I am, a woman who managed to get herself stuck in a dude’s body?

That is what “Just A Word” is about…and how all the internal progress I had made, all the ways I had listened and believed and trusted the words of people around me…and now felt like a fool for it!

Well…my friend is a spectacular person, and I don’t think for a minute she intended to hurt me or wound me, and I think that our friendship will continue to grow and blossom…but it did hurt.  And it did tumble me briskly down that slope and back to my beginnings in the valley of dysphoria.tumblr_ns0hojuTZo1qas1mto2_1280

Which leads me to the quote that prompted this post:

Don’t feel bad if you still wish your body looked different
or if your voice sounded better or if you can’t quite love yourself yet.
Self-acceptance is a journey. You’re not hopeless just because others may be ahead of you.
Appreciate yourself. Appreciate how far you’ve come.
You’re on your way, at your own pace.

Ultimately, it doesn’t matter what she…or anybody else for that matter, thinks.

I accept me.

know who I am…I know!tumblr_ns0hojuTZo1qas1mto3_1280

A Quintessential Quandry

“Don’t take it personal”.

I get told this…believe it or not.  Hah.  As if you could read here for any number of posts and not figure out that I am passionate and sticky-hearted.  And I do.

Take it personal.  Everything.  Not just when someone says someone cruel, but also when someone says something beautiful, or something funny, or something poignant.tumblr_nsmq0xJbLN1qat5pio1_500I once quipped that how can I take things any other way than personal, since I am a person.  How else can I take things?

But what I think, is that people are really saying to me:  “Charissa…when you show your emotions and reveal your heart in an unashamed and unabashed way, we get uncomfortable and we don’t want to be uncomfortable.  So please have some savoir faire and conceal your emotions behind a bemused and distant facade like the rest of us do.”

I think you would all be somewhat shocked if you knew how often I actually do this very thing…but the cost of this to me? Just everything that makes me uniquely me…such as sensing someone’s pain and sorrow…such as seeing who they are in a glance and processing years of history in one taste…such as having a timely word that is bloody and rich in healing…such as the funny saying and humorous word that releases and sets free…such as the honest and direct pledge of being present whenever called on…

nuffin’ real important…just the freaking bleeding bloody essence of me.tumblr_nsmxkyabc41qat5pio1_500It gets confusing really fast.  Because here is one thing that happens regularly:  Something happens that is painful, and I do my best Lady Gaga and work on my poker face…and the astute in the area will sense that I am not being genuine and will upbraid me as not having been forthright.

So I go ahead and honestly reveal what has hurt me…and then get told to not take it personally.

See what happened there?

Today is an equilibrium regaining day…events of yesterday were hurtful…no one’s fault, just the way it is in this world…and I wrestled with an admonition that I had said something was okay and sorta tried to pass it off when I was in fact hurt and very confused over why something had happened that happened…and regarding those same things another exhortation to not take things personally.  Be authentic and show the hurt…but don’t take it personally…

I confess that I do not know how to do this.  I really do not know, and am gonna have to learn what that all means.tumblr_mtqvyyw8oN1qe0lqqo1_1280But then again, there are a lot of things I don’t know…like why people who knew me for years now think I am totally insane, or possessed, or that I am involved in some sexual practice (HAH!  God knows the absurdity of that!)…like why people still misgender me regularly and not knowing if this is due to something I am doing or something I am failing to do…like what to do about a frame and a voice and all that stuff that has literally nothing to do with my true essence and self.

It’s a raw day…and Grace Notes is where I work thru things…writing my heart out…writing my pain out…clarifying to myself what it is I have experienced and what I think.  So far, hundreds of you have chosen to come along on the journey…thank you for that…and I give you permission to take the things I say to heart.

If you are an emotional person that may look like taking it personally…and if you are a calm person it may look like thinking things thru and changing behavior.

Either way…I am pressing on, forgetting what lies behind and pressing on…tumblr_lwastw716F1qmtc74o1_500

Confronting Your Own Privilege

“Is ‘heterosexual’ a slur? No. It describes an identity and experience. Because straight folks don’t typically experience their heterosexuality as an identity, many don’t identify as heterosexual — they don’t need to, because culture has already done that for them. Similarly, cisgender people don’t generally identify as cisgender because societal expectations already presume that they are. […]It’s an incredible and invisible power to not need to name yourself because the norms have already done that for you. You don’t need to come out as heterosexual or cisgender because it is already expected. Since it isn’t a derogatory term, those who take exception to it may be uncomfortable with trans issues, or perhaps they are unwilling to confront their own privilege.”
K.J. Rawson, interview via the Advocate

One of the greatest acts of advocacy you can partake of…confronting your own privilege.
tumblr_nrth4tpJ7a1s6f9kuo1_500

The Triune Choice of Transgender Humans in a Binary World

I wanted to press this because I admire the courage of this person, and I wanted to call attention (again) to the plight of transgender people.  Sadly, we are limited to just a couple of options:

1.  Be true to ourselves, and get harassed, bullied, and very likely even assaulted and/or killed.

2.  Hide, and be subject to awful harassment, bullying and assault from ourselves from inside our own being.

Of course there is the 3rd option, the one I took:

You can always just rip yourself in two…dissociate, so you don’t “know” about yourself (and neither does anyone else), and you can simply study the prison that you have been given and called life and learn how to perform.

Perform well, and get rewarded with praise, affection, what is termed “love” (and from the perspective of the givers surely is love, but from the perspective of the dissociated person it’s never really known for sure if they’re loved), and all the privileges accorded to one who conforms to their prescribed role.

But the fallout from this…the gender role half life, if you will…is terrible.  Stress, dysphoria, depression, and ultimately despair.  The ripples of that rending of the soul in twain go forth from that moment…

…but they don’t diminish with time, they magnify, grow larger and have increasingly more destructive results in the lives of all who intersect with that person.

I know.  This is what I did…and I’ve been informed by those who had the grave misfortune to exist in those waves and troughs that I ruined them forever in my cowardly and hypocritical choice to dissociate rather than displease (or worse) my parents.

Hey, I was 6 years old…I shoulda known better…I did know worse…eventually.

So there you have it, folks…the 3 fold option for prisoners of the gender binary back in the mid 60s.  If you know a family with a gender variant member, and they are seeking to grapple with it now in a world that is slowly growing more flexible as attitudes and superstitions change…reach out and give them love.

They will certainly need it.

Do Justice.  Love Mercy.  Walk Humbly
Charissatumblr_npuxgzCrCq1qg4kx9o1_1280

riverheadlocal.com

Transgender youth skip school rather than face discrimination, humiliation from educators and peers

The N.Y. Civil Liberties Union is calling on the State Education Department to provide detailed guidance to public school districts on preventing transgender youths’ discrimination and harassment by students and teachers.

Many trans* youth don’t get the education they deserve due to undue harassment and discrimination from both educations and peers.

This is why EVERY school should have a fully inclusive non-discrimination AND anti-bullying policy which protects youth and educators alike on the basis of sexual orientation, gender identity and gender presentation.

Neighborhood Bully (Apologies to Bob Dylan for the Adjustments)

Well, the neighborhood bully, she’s a woman
Her enemies say she’s on their land
They got her outnumbered about a million to one
She got no place to escape to, no place to run
She’s the neighborhood bully

The neighborhood bully just lives to survive
She’s criticized and condemned for being alive
She’s not supposed to fight back, she’s supposed to have thick skin
She’s supposed to lay down and die when her door is kicked in
She’s the neighborhood bully

The neighborhood bully been driven out of every land
She’s wandered the earth an exiled man
Seen her family scattered, her people hounded and torn
She’s always on trial for just being born
She’s the neighborhood bully

Well, she knocked out a lynch mob, she was criticized
Old women condemned her, said she should apologize.
Then she destroyed a bomb factory, nobody was glad
The bombs were meant for her. She was supposed to feel bad
She’s the neighborhood bully

Well, the chances are against it and the odds are slim
That she’ll live by the rules that the world makes for her
’Cause there’s a noose at her neck and a gun at her back
And a license to kill her is given out to every maniac
She’s the neighborhood bully

She got no allies to really speak of
What she gets she must pay for, she don’t get it out of love
She buys obsolete weapons and she won’t be denied
But no one sends flesh and blood to fight by her side
She’s the neighborhood bully

Well, she’s surrounded by pacifists who all want peace
They pray for it nightly that the bloodshed must cease
Now, they wouldn’t hurt a fly. To hurt one they would weep
They lay and they wait for this bully to fall asleep
She’s the neighborhood bully

Every empire that’s enslaved her is gone
Egypt and Rome, even the great Babylon
She’s made a garden of paradise in the desert sand
In bed with nobody, under no one’s command
She’s the neighborhood bully

Now her holiest books have been trampled upon
No contract she signed was worth what it was written on
She took the crumbs of the world and she turned it into wealth
Took sickness and disease and she turned it into health
She’s the neighborhood bully

What’s anybody indebted to her for?
Nothin’, they say. She just likes to cause war
Pride and prejudice and superstition indeed
They wait for this bully like a dog waits to feed
She’s the neighborhood bully

What has she done to wear so many scars?
Does she change the course of rivers? Does she pollute the moon and stars?
Neighborhood bully, standing on the hill
Running out the clock, time standing still
Neighborhood bully
tumblr_nnse5t19Z71qat5pio1_500

Copyright © 1983 by Special Rider Music
Lyrical adaptations by Charissa, in honor of courageous women everywhere, especially transwomen

The Triune Choice of Transgender People In a Binary World

I wanted to press this because I admire the courage of this person, and I wanted to call attention (again) to the plight of transgender people.  Sadly, we are limited to just a couple of options:

1.  Be true to ourselves, and get harassed, bullied, and very likely even assaulted and/or killed.

2.  Hide, and be subject to awful harassment, bullying and assault from ourselves from inside our own being.

Of course there is the 3rd option, the one I took:

You can always just rip yourself in two…dissociate, so you don’t “know” about yourself (and neither does anyone else), and you can simply study the prison that you have been given and called life and learn how to perform.

Perform well, and get rewarded with praise, affection, what is termed “love” (and from the perspective of the givers surely is love, but from the perspective of the dissociated person it’s never really known for sure if they’re loved), and all the privileges accorded to one who conforms to their prescribed role.

But the fallout from this…the gender role half life, if you will…is terrible.  Stress, dysphoria, depression, and ultimately despair.  The ripples of that rending of the soul in twain go forth from that moment…

…but they don’t diminish with time, they magnify, grow larger and have increasingly more destructive results in the lives of all who intersect with that person.

I know.  This is what I did…and I’ve been informed by those who had the grave misfortune to exist in those waves and troughs that I ruined them forever in my cowardly and hypocritical choice to dissociate rather than displease (or worse) my parents.

Hey, I was 6 years old…I shoulda known better…I did know worse…eventually.

So there you have it, folks…the 3 fold option for prisoners of the gender binary back in the mid 60s.  If you know a family with a gender variant member, and they are seeking to grapple with it now in a world that is slowly growing more flexible as attitudes and superstitions change…reach out and give them love.

They will certainly need it.

Do Justice.  Love Mercy.  Walk Humbly
Charissa

riverheadlocal.com

Transgender youth skip school rather than face discrimination, humiliation from educators and peers

The N.Y. Civil Liberties Union is calling on the State Education Department to provide detailed guidance to public school districts on preventing transgender youths’ discrimination and harassment by students and teachers.

Many trans* youth don’t get the education they deserve due to undue harassment and discrimination from both educations and peers.

This is why EVERY school should have a fully inclusive non-discrimination AND anti-bullying policy which protects youth and educators alike on the basis of sexual orientation, gender identity and gender presentation.

Affirmation


Deconstructing Masculinity & Manhood with Michael Kimmel @ Dartmouth College

YAAAAEEESSSSSSS

You know what I like, and feel is so important? That he doesn’t say “Men thinks those are THEIR positions”. He says “We think those are OUR positions.”

As a male feminist, he still doesn’t exclude himself from the group of men.

Here’s What’s Okay (And Not Okay) to Say to a Trans Person – Once and For All — Everyday Feminism

Here’s What’s Okay (And Not Okay) to Say to a Trans Person – Once and For All — Everyday Feminism. Dear Constance, this article will be good review for some, and a great beginning for those who are interested but don’t know protocol.

The one that is most crucial to me?  The one that says my story is mine and not yours…and you have no right to out me to anyone…even though people have done this to me. It’s sorta weird to meet someone I knew then and hear that there is all kinds of gossip about me happening…that means that the paragons of virtue who told me I was beyond a river they refused to cross and that I was demonized?

They started the rumors and passed them along…and likely think they served Jesus in doing it. The trouble they caused me…I weep still at times over things that I could have shared in my own way and time that got shared and soo distorted… …but that’s the way it goes when you deal with the privileged…whatever they say is God’s will becomes God’s will…

because they say so (which makes them God, I guess).
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TransWhat? • Allyship: first steps

TransWhat? • Allyship: first steps.

Fabulous aggregation of basic information!
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Is Your Trans Allyship Half-Baked? Here Are 6 Mistakes That Trans Allies Are Still Making — Everyday Feminism

Constance…you are all so kind to me, supportive and for me.  And sometimes, you just put your feet right in it, and not even know it!

Because your comments are not intended to harm or other or police me, I nearly always do not give a clue as to how they have hurt me…but they do.

Like when you say “Oh wow, you’re looking so great today girl, and you’re gonna look even better when you get that 5 o’clock shadow” lasered off”

*OOooffff!*  That hurts…especially because there are many cis-females that have more naturally occurring facial hair than I do!

Or this one was particularly cutting:  “Why don’t you consider getting your Adam’s Apple shaved?  It will make you look more feminine”…

…so I went home and cried after that one…cus lots of reasons, but one of the biggest is that there are many drag queens and transvestites who look 100% feminine and completely identify as gay males and in no way consider themselves female…while here I am, female thru and thru and yet told that I need a shave of my Adam’s Apple to look (read “be”) more feminine.

Or “you sound like a boy so you are a boy”…wow, don’t know where to go with that one because here is the fact:  any human being whose vocal cords are exposed to testosterone is going to have those cords damaged by that exposure and it will be permanent, irreversible damage.  The result is that person’s voice will then deepen, coarsen, and sound like what we have been socialized to believe that men sound like and not women.

I would add one that the author leaves out:  we trans-folk are not your personal research assistants!  “Why Charissa, whatever do you mean?”  Here is what I mean:  many of you have taken baby steps out into the jungle, and trans-misogynist tigers have roared loud at you, eyes glaring…and you scurry to me and say “CHARISSA!!!  There’s beasties out there!  Give me some bullets PDQ!!!  What do I say???!!”

Umm…so here is what I want you to know:  we are not born the “Golden Child of all knowledge trans!” We were born inside these skins, as tabula rasa as you…what we learned was from hard work, investment of time, research, learning Google-Fu and using it, and then more of the same!  The information is out there…the same things I found and tested and tried and learned.

I cannot be an ally for you!  You either are or you aren’t.

You can’t just show up when it’s convenient, and expect me to carry the ball the rest of the time, give you your lines, take all the arrows so you won’t be harmed…I am already taking arrows and dealing with that.

It’s the nature of being an ally…get some skin in the game.

It makes me heartsick when “allies” come around because they need something, but they aren’t around when I am under assault and feel like I am fighting the Battle of Bastogne all by myself.

Oh…and please, PLEASE:  don’t get all hurt and go away pouty when you ask me to give you all the answers and I reply with “It’s out there…go dig!”

Allies…by now, you could be eating meat…why do you content yourself with milk?

Awwright…lecture over…go read the article if you still are here LOL!!

When we talk about biological sex being “what’s between your legs,” we’re forgetting that sex is actually much more complicated than that. Genitalia, chromosomes, hormones, and secondary sex characteristics all contribute to our assigned sex at birth, but ultimately, sex is just that: assigned.

Biological sex is a social construction, meaning it’s something we as a culture have created. That’s not to say it isn’t relevant to our health or that it doesn’t influence our personal realities, but the categories of “female” and “male” must be recognized for what they really are.

via Is Your Trans Allyship Half-Baked? Here Are 6 Mistakes That Trans Allies Are Still Making — Everyday Feminism.

Beside This Ring Of Ashes One Year Later

One year later,
in this year of grace
I sit in stillness
ringside once again
but only with dead ashes,
no flame.

Instead, I warm myself within
with thoughts of fires long ago,
long gone out but flickering
strongly in this quiet night
of lonely memories.tumblr_nq9ngm71fg1qat5pio1_500

I know it has to happen, yes
this death of me, this death
of who I was, no…
what I was, or rather
what you thought I was
and what I wasn’t too.

You thought me as a god,
and just a little lower than a god.
Your “glorious glorious father”
shining strong and tall,
quick and certain, no one knew
that was but wooly curtains drawn
over a stage making the ready
for a play to become real-life…
finally…at last…
But…what’s a child to do when god betrays?

tumblr_nm8fo9zWD51tkr81jo1_1280When god is thus unfaithful and capricious…
that god must become monster,
and vicious harsh taskmaster,
when god must be revealed as sick pretender
(your words, love, not mine, those are your words)
as just the “other”, empty, just a mask?tumblr_nd6tstqbwz1sckob0o1_1280

Well, Nietzsche showed the way, now dint he?
He sussed the death of God and birth of crisis…
He understood the very underpinnings
of everything are quivering like liquid,
all foundations kicked asunder
and this hollow edifice
left floating in the shell-pink air.

Nietzsche called for total transformation,
he demanded blood, the death of God,
and also everything He stood for.

I get it…I do…the death of god
No really, I know it’s me, not you…
Problematic in my breathing
and offensive in my joy, well
this aggression will not stand, man!

And so it is that I must die…well,
he must die and be defamed
for every single gripe,
complaint or wound or sling
he must be destroyed
because he wasn’t He
and now it’s clear
that he would never be…
but I will be…me.tumblr_nneoshc0PX1sq00azo1_1280

Go ahead, beloveds,
it’s true that I must die
so you can be set free
and God at last can finally BE
that God of Wonder
far beyond the Galaxy,
high above and right beside us
bringing life again to you and me.

Use what silver knives you have
(I placed them in your hands so long ago,
carefully planned, bequeathed to you your
weapons of words, of music and of comprehension).
Use the ropes you find inside your packs,
laid lovingly from Lorien in wonder
and in sober long anticipation yes,
that someday your blood be required
of me and on my head as well
(but it’s in my heart forever).54606def315a3No crucifix for me, how gauche,
how gothic and old fashioned!
No…a shiny scaffold glittery
erected stainless steel there, gleaming
austere, so implacable
and one thin razor wire noose
with my neck’s name writ there

*Charissa Grace* tumblr_npuhk5h8PG1uru6h4o1_1280

(except it’s not so plain as all that)
no…the old name that speaks of

blood     and
the price     and all things made
white as snow again.tumblr_nq5pgxrQWz1qllucco2_1280

I have confidence in you
(this is not stupid or myopic,
this is love, Lovelies).
I see this execution
is but you living out
what I have taught you
that there is no god but God
(not even glorious father)

and all things that you love
descend from His Great Goodness
and Mama’s bag of richestumblr_nm27mtsR1i1qkevp7o1_1280

*beauty of the Leaves of Grass
haunting grace of purity ring
simple joy in eyes of beloved boys
furious flow of men and balls and love*

I wish you all good always
and hope that someday your mouth won’t be cursed
with this burnt aftertaste of death,
and me just acrid curse to you…
if my death expiate your soul
and bring release and freedom to you all
then quick, oh Hangman, let the black bell toll
and pull your lever that I may hard fall

and snap…snuff…pooftumblr_na3un4PrG41r1arpmo1_1280

and on you live, free
building brave new worlds
but I will still be like those flickering fires
that linger in my mind while I sit here
beside this ring of ashes never warm
and those seats empty in this quiet storm

of memory, of love, of sorrow held so dear
God knows I gladly die and wish you near
and trust that I will rise and know no fear
forever, just Love’s Fires always here.tumblr_nq3ucoBZSl1qat5pio1_400

“The madman jumped into their midst and pierced them with his eyes. ‘Whither is God,’ he cried; ‘I will tell you. We have killed him—you and I! All of us are his murderers…Do we not feel the breath of empty space? Has it not become colder?…Do we smell nothing as yet of the divine decomposition? Gods, too, decompose. God is dead. God remains dead. And we have killed him.'”
Friedrich Nietzsche 
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Living as a transgender woman who doesn’t yet ‘pass’

This…everyday.  This is the life we walk.

As the recent Human Rights Commission’s ‘Resilient Individuals: Sexual Orientation, Gender Identity & Intersex Rights’ report shows, transgender people are at a highly elevated risk of being physically and verbally harassed, made unemployed, homeless, denied healthcare or access to other services, than most other demographics within Australia. Having experienced every one of the aforementioned situations at one time or another during my transition, I wish being transgender was unremarkable enough that I didn’t have to ‘pass’ and that I could safely participate in activities like sport and work without my identity being constantly under scrutiny.

via Living as a transgender woman who doesn’t yet ‘pass’.tumblr_no7l4ikNi01thfeewo1_1280

Extremely Powerful Thinking: On Femininity and the Patriarchy

Constance…please read thru the sections I am sharing below.  Read it slow and let it sink in.

This is my life.  I am living these sentences (word chosen to echo and double back on itself, those with eyes let them see).

Consider the way that my sentences being served also impact you…and the way that yours can set me free, if you will but begin to speak them.

Just read up on the Bell Hooks-Laverne Cox talk, thought it was really uncool (and unfemininist) of Hooks to chide Cox for her presentation.

I mean yeah, I get that for (feminist) cis women, femininity can start to feel constricting after a while, but trans women have a very different relationship with it. Patriarchy wants AFAB (Assigned Female At Birth) people to be feminine, it does not want AMAB (Assigned Male At Birth) people to be feminine.

For a person that was assigned male at birth, it absolutely can be revolutionary to embrace femininity. It is anathema to patriarchy for AMAB people to embrace femininity, why else do you think trans women get any and all femininity beaten out of them for the first part of their lives?

Besides, cis women had all their lives to try it out and grow tired of it. How many cis women haven’t smeared their mum’s lipstick all over their face as a little girl? At least have a heart and give us some time to experiment with femininity, you were given that time while you were growing up and I don’t see you high-n-mighty feminists going after teenage cis girls for it.

I would like to expand on this, and say that the patriarchy derides and punishes femininity in general. That’s why men who like female-coded activities are mocked. that’s why “girly-girls” are derided as shallow or high-maintenance.

But with trans women, expressing femininity is particularly revolutionary because it isn’t just about social conditioning–it’s a complete rejection of masculinity as the “valuable option.”

Many women–trans and cis–find value in femininity, but when cis women embrace it, everyone assumes it’s because it is expected and because that’s how they were trained. It isn’t considered unusual, because society insists that’s the punishment you get for being a woman, and if you’re very good you’ll reject that and try to act more like your “betters.”

But trans women are offered masculinity on a platter–it’s assumed to be our birthright–and we reject it. More accurately, like most people we reject parts of it. We’re proof that masculinity isn’t inherently valuable or precious–it’s just another thing.

And of course, patriarchal ideals double down on us for that. Our punishment for embracing the feminine and not being “rightly” ashamed of it is to be chained by it, and punished for any infraction. Male-coded interests are “proof” that we’re faking it.

Not appearing feminine enough is grounds for firing or banning us from homes (or from the lives of our own relatives). Expressing anger or standing up for ourselves is interpreted–even by self-proclaimed feminists–as our being aggressive and “really” men.

And revealing anything about our genitals is literally grounds for execution.

People hunt down the tiniest nuances–our shoulders, our voices, or hobbies, or age–and use the smallest infraction against gender norms to completely invalidate our statement that masculinity isn’t precious at all. This despite the fact that trans women, like everyone, aren’t inherantly “pure women” or “pure men” any more than any cis person–we’re mixes of social messages and biological impulses, some accepted some rejected, that go into forming a complex human being.

Trans women highlight that there’s no superior gender or gendered form of expression, and that pisses people off.

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My Sister ‘Becca

I have a friend that I call ‘Becca.  She has simply clicked with me…and of course she is a Scorpio!  Giggle…Heather, Dani, Jane, there are reinforcements!  ❤

Anyway, I just decided to adopt myself into her family, and so I am her sister, and she mine.

She spoke for me today…in my absence, in ways of towering significance and true strength…to a person that I have not spoken to or even been in touch with for like 15 or 20 years!

This person apparently repeatedly used my birth name in derogatory ways in the attempt to demean me? (By the way, this is what is known as ‘policing’)  And ‘Becca not only spoke up for me, she left the situation before losing her temper, thus showing her grasp of the true nature and intent of my own heart and vision.

That.

That is being an ally…being a sister.  She didn’t call me up and demand an explanation.  She didn’t tell me that my transition was causing her issues so she needed to distance herself.  She called to tell me so I would know and to be sure that she had handled it appropriately…even went so far as to infer that she would give this person “what for” if they came at her again.

Because I am no more ashamed of my birth name and who I was than a butterfly is ashamed of its stage as a caterpillar, I volunteered to share back story with her.

She simply said:  “Ya know, I just love my Charissa, and want to know Charissa Grace”.

*she called me “her Charissa”…*

Thank you, ‘Becca…you epitomize family and what being an ally is.

Oh…and trouble maker?  You who think you are fuller of the Holy Spirit than anyone else?  You who have not spoken to me or seen me in ages and ages and have no idea anything of my heart and soul?  I will simply sing of my liberty while you are chained to your small, tight heart and your ignorant judgements.

Thank you ‘Becca…ally and friend indeed!tumblr_nn6avj2OgZ1s6k31lo1_1280

Christians, Be Careful What You Say On Facebook

Christians, Be Careful What You Say On Facebook.

Constance…you will be blessed by this.

Reader:  this is how it’s done.tumblr_m7t5u6ljxW1ro46rko1_500

The Transgender Brain | Transas City

The Transgender Brain | Transas City.

Constance, another article that helps explain the reality of transgender brain formation and how this determines gender orientation.

This will be preaching to the choir, but likely might be helpful to those still uneducated that this is something quite different than “living my truth” or any other characterization that seeks to make my gender orientation some version of a choice.

Perhaps you all could pass it on in your own attempts to be allies.

Reader, it’s up to you…you are proud of judging non-christians for ignoring the evidence for Christ…pot meet kettle, if you continue to characterize gender variance as anything other than what it is:  a reality that is as legitimate as your own “owned internal sense of gender”.

It’s a bit like being proud you are not a cleft palate born person, and then trying to deny treatment to anyone who was born that way.

Privilege and Captivity: One and the Same

This morning I am somewhat morose over an experience that I had this week.tumblr_mws19657NM1t3vrj3o1_540

I am struggling to deal with the ways that people tend to gravitate to ideas and appealing causes, tend to be drawn to words that are spoken with passion and purpose…

…but when the Incarnation time comes, they turtle…back into the shell of comfort, or familiarity, or least resistance, or something that they falsely call peace when it is actually the mere absence of conflict.

You did realise that, didn’t you? Your destiny? To become an Incarnate word? To take that core passion, meaning, burning intention, determination, whatever it is, and actually become a living, breathing, triumphing, failing, enduring persevering example of it!

But oh the cost…and pain…confusion and sorrow (But One has gone before and blazed the trail).tumblr_np0qu3m6mq1qk2poao1_1280

There is a paradigm in our culture (that stems from a greater problem, but that is another post another time) and it holds us ALL captive…except some of us are captive in barbwire bonds, and some are just captive by walls inescapable…and can move about, partake of comforts that make it more bearable being a prisoner.

That latter quality is called privilege. When you have it, words that wound and destroy are seen as not such a bad thing and meant only as jokes or slang.

When you don’t have it and protest words that wound and destroy,  you become the object of the privileged speaker’s ire and irritation at being called out…and finding yourself alone in this sort of battle is sobering and difficult.

When you have privilege a raid on your personhood is like going to the beach and taking a bucketful of sand…when you don’t have it, a raid on your personhood is like a flood that washes away precious topsoil and leaves a devastating wasteland in its place.tumblr_nowtpbDLaj1s4cmmwo1_1280

This week I encountered a man on social media who used diminishing and objectifying vocabulary to describe how he became aroused as a teen-ager regardless of what the women were wearing.  He purported to be a supporter of women, an opponent of Rape Culture and an advocate for women as subjects and not just objects of the lusts of men.  He seemed to value being somewhat flip and “hep”, because he used this term to describe lusting after a woman:  “Bone Out”.

Bone Out.393121_400888443273074_63734520_n-934x

Constance, if you are reading this as a human being who has spent time in male spaces where they believe themselves to be alone with themselves and no female people present, you will recognize this term as slang for masturbation accompanied by fantasizing over whatever poor unfortunate woman has the burden of being his fantasy object, and in this fantasy she will do, be, say, or act out whatever it is he wants (or thinks he does).  You will also know that after you are finished “boning out”, you will have unconsciously internalized (in varying degrees) some of this fantasy as “how women really are” and “what women really want”.

Constance, if you are female…how do you feel inside when someone who purports to be an advocate advocates for you while talking about “Boning Out” and blatantly says that it doesn’t matter what you wear, it is going to happen?

Well, I called him out on it…first with a somewhat rhetorical “Wait, whaaaa?  What did I just read?” (or words to that effect, I cannot quote them because I blocked this person after our next exchanges).

Aaaannnnddd, what do you think this advocate did?  Check himself, and say “Oh wow, sorry ladies, I apologize for my slang, and I really do see how in trying to make a point that dress codes are irrelevant I inadvertently revealed that I was gonna lust after you whenever I wanted to”…hmm?  Seems a gracious response, yes?  Or do you think he got huffy, aggrieved and touchy, blame shifting any objection to what he said over to the objector?

DING DING DING!!!  And you got it!  The latter!tumblr_n6a43xqvY01qfi7p6o1_1280

Now keep in mind that this thread was vitally active with intelligent women who were making informed and insightful thoughtful comments and expressing their hearts over how these dress codes are designed to oppress and other women and keep them in places of exclusion in the paradigm.

So I commented further and sought to point out that his vocabulary was coarse at best and lowered the level of discourse and destructive at worst because of the way it objectified and sexualized women.  I tried to point out that he had obviated his support of abolishing dress codes by flat out stating that he would lust after a woman regardless of what she is wearing!

Let that sink in.

He then went on to defend his position that school attire should be like work attire:  “business appropriate”…and that is not a bad idea, by the way (the fact that many people do not want to go into business not withstanding)…and yet still couldn’t see that the problem was not the dress code!

The problem is in the attitude of males who believe it their right OR their inescapable biological destiny to lust after women for the sake of their own satiation sexually.  So we know that this person would “bone out” over a woman in business attire, or snowsuits, or bikinis, or the latest chic shade of grey.

Scattered throughout his man-splainin’ were jabs at me, turning it back on me and basically claiming to be intention-wise such a champion of women…and he doubled down on his slang with scatological vocabulary and a tone of anger in his words that I took as his clear intention to intimidate me into silence…tumblr_nowl3btjDz1sooy9go1_1280

and he also doubled down on his blindness and tone-deafness, by making comments about his propensity to get aroused over whatever women were around.  He did not own this as his own issue!  He said that women give him a chubby!

So Constance, you women out there…be it known that you now have a new role: to be a Giver!  YAAAYYY…um no yay, because you are now a giver of chubbies.

Oh, and “chubbie” is a cute word which is used to cutify the male erection…I suppose calling it a chubbie was supposed to make me coo like it was his mischievous unruly puppy that makes messes here and there but will be oh so loveable if I just pet it and feed it.

I know these things.  I lived amongst them.tumblr_mxqdlbSkej1qft4nwo2_1280

No matter what you are doing, whether you realize it or not, you are a giver of chubbies to men.  And what are these poor fellows to do, being such a downtrodden oppressed group, except to take this gift and…yeah.

Well, I appealed to my sisters who had been speaking so lively and true…was I wrong?  Was I out of line?  Was everyone just so impressed with his wit, his scatological riffs more reminiscent of Richard Pryor than Dice Clay?  Would they let me know?  Or, if I was right, would they come to my side and help me try to educate this man?

I also decided to draw the interaction to a conclusion so far as my end was concerned because in social media an artificial connection exists that does not lend itself well to “Iron sharpening Iron”…you have all been there I am sure…emotions rise up and swamp intellect and good will is washed away and insult and invective become the implements of war in Sarcasm’s hand, until blood and entrails are the media for the pictograms that death carves into the scene.  And all that carnage between two Image Bearers who have never met, never knew each other even existed 10 minutes before, and have no idea who and what the other person is…

…the wrong that is inside us just gushes out like a geyser…

…why does it almost never happen otherwise when there is a sharp difference of opinion or misunderstanding?  No, better to just end it, after all the beginning of a quarrel is soo much like starting to relieve one’s self:  once it is going, it is nearly impossible to stop until you have voided your bladder, and then it’s too late, you have defiled everything in the stream of your waste.

And also, I blocked this person, because I have stepped in it before with men just like this guy who then become relentless in hunting me down and virtually assaulting me online, and rest assured they make sure that I know that I am transgender and what they think of it…as if I had not ever known or heard.  And when you are told that you will be ambushed and killed by people that others think is a great guy, well it messes with your heart.tumblr_mwk6uksqQj1sl15wgo1_1280

And no, this guy did not say that to me…at least not that I know.  Because I blocked him preemptively.

This all happened on someone else’s domain, and I did not feel the freedom to deconstruct his arguments and address them one by one…and I truly believe that he was so angry and defensive it would have made it worse.  I also did not think to copy them all before I blocked him so that I had a record, and I do not want to unblock him in order to do that…

…so these are my recollections…but really…these are the things I felt and experienced…

and they left me feeling bruised and insulted…

…and isolated.tumblr_mqhjbp8dZ61qer2oto1_1280

No one else said anything…what was so obvi to me was either not true, wasn’t visible, or was so scary that no one else would step forward and stand with me.  And that is what was the most deeply discouraging, because then I wonder if I had been a cis female would someone have spoken up for me?  Was everyone silent because I am transgender, and openly so?  Is my courage like trying to put out a volcano by carrying teacups of water to the violence one by one?

If I am silent, it continues.  If I speak, it attacks, and continues.

Well, I am speaking.  Here…on Grace Notes…and I am saying it is not okay for men to hide behind the notion that their arousal from being around women is something they cannot control…I know about this first hand, and it is indeed possible to not do this!  I am saying it is not okay to talk both sides against the middle.

And that way?  At least I can live with myself.

Do JUSTICE
Love MERCY
Walk HUMBLY

In sorrow and tears,
Charissa

tumblr_mtyb55ZBUv1sc24v1o1_500

Judith Butler on gender and the trans experience

Judith Butler on gender and the trans experience

Constance, Judith Butler is a very important voice in the rethinking of gender and gender roles, and as such is worth spending some time exploring.

This article is a good introduction, so I am posting it for your opportunity.

“If That’s The Truth You Need To Live”

This phrase drives me nuts!!  Because it is usually spoken by someone who thinks themself supportive, and they have no idea how it others me, demeans and diminishes me.

Can you imagine, as a cis-gender person if someone else came up to you and said “Hey, if the truth you need to live is that you are a (fill in the blank), then I am all for it!”

You would just laugh, and think “what an idiot”.  Right?

But with me, when they say this, it is as if they think that they have somehow conferred some legitimacy on me and then posed themself as the paragon of acceptance…

I think next time this happens, Ima just do this:

No Protest In Philly!!

OMG Constance!!  Did you hear about the massive protests and riots going on in Philadelphia because of the death of a woman of color???

Yeah…neither did I.

After all…she was only a woman.

A woman of color.

Oh…and she was trans.

Just another piece of trash collected for the patriarchy.  http://www.buzzfeed.com/dominicholden/transgender-woman-stabbed-to-death-in-philadelphia?utm_term=.yfzwq8GpK#.pnOnBKk8L tumblr_no7mu5zPsO1rebxsto1_1280

But while I am on the topic of killing transwomen?  If you slur me with your words…if you other me with your actions…if you lie to yourself about who I am…if you call me “engenderer”, “mask”, “monster”, “other” (a literal “othering”)…

…you do not get to call yourself a trans-advocate.

Words hurt, wound irrevokably…but silence slays the heart.tumblr_mvieqh54sY1qj5oxwo1_1280

Letters From Those Abused and Afraid | Disrupted Physician

Letters From Those Abused and Afraid | Disrupted Physician.

Dear Constance…I am blessed with such a plethora of amazing, wonderful followers.

That would be you…Constant Reader…Constance.

One of them is at the link I just posted, and he is a truth teller, more rare than gold dust as an amazing person commented over there.

“But why, Charissa?  Why would you share such a topic as the one you chose?”

Because it is eerily reminiscent of the treatment of transgender people at the hands of…well…virtually everyone in our society.  The double binds that are illuminated, the abuse, the policing and othering, the way the system protects itself and eliminates any possible threats to itself…

Yeah…this is the life of a transgender human being every single livelong day.

The system is a giant virus, and it has gathered to itself other virulent viruses and they all are completely sold out and committed to the mandate of one thing and one thing alone:  survival and self-replication. And we, all of us, are in the belly of this beast.

Some of us are the pilot fish of privilege…circling the jaws, living off the shreds of flesh that trail off those teeth sharp and cruel.  Some of us are between those jaws, ever consumed for the survival of the virus, and some live in the bowels, in the rot and excrement of everything that must take place in order for the thing to keep alive.

How are we to live?

The monolithic nature of this thing prohibits mass action, but what about individual action?  Will you consider changing the way you interact with every single person you meet?  Just think…if we all did that, loved our neighbor as ourselves, loved God (or if you believe you do not believe then loved being kind, being forgiving, being truthful and merciful), and refused to participate in injustice…

…there might be cracks, and then rents, and then in a rush a breaking down of the walls and the death of the virus.

Do Justice.  Love Mercy.  Walk Humbly.
Love, Charissa

 

Bullied Girl Commits Suicide After School Officials Tell Her “Toughen Up”

Bullied Girl Commits Suicide After School Officials Tell Her “Toughen Up”.

Here’s a thought:  how bout each one of you who reads this go to your school board and tell them that if  this sort of thing is tolerated in your school district, you will file civil suit against them as culpable for the death?

How bout you simply say to them you personally will not tolerate anything whatsoever except a no bullying stance?

Or is it to you as it is to so many:  the equivalent of the Aztec hearts held up to appease the angry god of the patriarchy and preserve your own privilege?

Me and My Cat-Hair

Me and my Cat-Hair go where we want!
Well, my Cat-hair does, anyway.
I just trail frantically, pulled right along
as it wanders and pries and looks into burrows
and lays in the sun and just licks its soft paws
with no care in the world but those mice!

Sometimes it looks really cool, and just perfect!
Purring there, cooing and wanting the touch
of a hand that will smooth its sleek soft furry pelt
and some fingers so friendly with their gentle skritch
skritch skritch and then a flat palm to do obeisance.

But then there are times when my Cat-hair just hisses!
Its eyes glowing green and just brimming with daggers
and it jumps akimbo and arches its back
and it dares me, just dares me to try to address it
with anything less than a rake and a hoe
and better get ready to wrestle a she-devil
scratches for skritches and clawings for pettings!!
Image result for cat clawing arm
My Cat-hair and me are sometimes called names
and sometimes called other and sometimes called mask
and sometimes called liar and sometimes called nothing
and that’s when my Cat-hair sits silent, tail lashing
and eyes focused into the void that is lurking
inside the accusers who say they hate cats
when what they really mean is that they just hate me…
Image result for cat being petted
well, Cat-hair is there, and I cannot do anything
to make it dog-hair or human or cow-hair
or sheep-hair or anything else that would walk
off the Ark on that day when the floodwaters drained
and the animals rambled in freedom again.

so I guess I will just go with Cat-hair, just sitting there
being itself, just my Cat-hair and me.

tumblr_lxzcllqQyB1qcx6rmo1_1280

Transgender Today – Avery Jackson – NYTimes.com

Over 50% of transgender children try to commit suicide by their mid to late teenage years. A large number of them succeed. And the main reason that these children state that they try to harm themselves is the lack of love and support of their family and friends. My wife and I decided that we would much rather have a happy, healthy daughter than a dead son.

via Transgender Today – Avery Jackson – NYTimes.com.

I LITrally Thought This When I Was Young!

In school, I was taught that the word “men” could mean all genders—it was up to the reader to be inclusive with the word in their mind. The word women always just meant women. So maybe men just need to find their path to include themselves every time I say women.
Katherine Bernard, reading Maggie Nelson’s “The Argonauts”

tumblr_nmty5rxo381qlelrho1_1280

“Can’t We Just Be Us?”

This.

You’d have two completely different views of the trans movement if you either read all the recent articles, or just the comments on them.

Articles: Tipping Point! Hollywood trend! Rapid change in public understanding & acceptance! We love you!

Comments: Sick, disgusting, delusional, predatory harbingers of utter doom and destruction! Who are also ugly!

If there is a truth, I suppose it’s somewhere between. Trendy monsters perhaps? Loathsome darlings? Delusional seers?

When can we just be us?”tumblr_nnor8qCfSC1qas1mto2_540

My Friend Nikki…

…says it so well right here!  I have thoughts about coins, too…about moments, but for now, feast on her thoughts, her insights…and be filled.

Thanks Nikki…LOVE YOU!!

So I was talking with one of my closest and dearest friends, Indiana. We were talking about our personal hardships we go through being trans.

How it sucks, and how it doesn’t.

I wanted to share a comment I made here for others, because I feel it is a great way of viewing both this life, and its opportunity.

Too many are giving up and killing themselves, and cis people just don’t know or understand. Its just a mess all around.

———

Its not fair. It sucks. So bad.

But it also doesn’t.

Its a coin. But its not a coin you toss and lands with finality, no…that would be too simple.

Its a coin that has been tossed by powers beyond our understanding that flips in perpetual motion.

Each spin brings something new. A new insight, a new experience, both a beginning and an ending…then there’s those moments that exist when the coin is between its flips, where we find ourselves.

Some times we want to press on to one face of the coin, or go to the other.

It sucks. But you and I…we both are there, flipping on it. Clinging onto it whether we are speaking or not. You’re hanging there too, and yeah…I don’t say nothing, but my eyes look over at you too.

———

Folks who struggle and straddle that divide…

“Voce sua ad verum”

It means, “To thine own self be true”, and it takes nothing short of pure desperation to reach that inner tipping point where you not only say that you’ve had enough, but that you’re willing to face the shame, humiliation, the ostracism, the name calling and whispers behind your back by those you once called your family, and your friends.

It takes nerves of steel and resolve to hold fast to who you are in a world that would have you be anything but who you are.

Damn it, be proud of yourselves. No one will ever know what we go through, just to go to a store or to even use the damned bathroom somewhere, never mind the complications of having special needs kids, dealing with “the system” and all of that.

So, that coin will keep flipping, and we’re along for the ride. Some of us weren’t so lucky to land firmly on one side of it or the other.

That’s all.

Chin up, and eyes to the future. We all have our crosses to carry, and if you aren’t a Christian, just interpret that as a unique burden that you deal with in life.

God bless you all.tumblr_nmhqwiXuLT1rebxsto1_1280

Anonymous: Her Blood is on your Keyboard

Constance…I am sobbing deeply right now.  Another transgender person dead, dysphoria eats another one of us, and what’s worse but not at all unusual is the way that the cis-world egged her on.

I cannot imagine the cruel hearts of the people who said such horrible things to her.

But I will be blunt:  everyday, you need to remember that most transgender people are treated with staggering othering and policing.

I myself am shunned, and my history is distorted and fabricated.  My narrative is hijacked in service of a myth that allows people to feel good about the indifferent uncaring way they choose to live.

It weighs on a person, it does.

Constance, everywhere around you someone is suffering, someone is laboring.  How about just be kind?

Please?

Someday you will wish you had been, if you’re lucky.

Trans woman, 23, kills herself after being attacked online | Gay Star News.

Trans woman, 23, kills herself after being attacked online

#HerNameWasRachel
RIP Rachel Bryk.

A young trans woman has killed herself after being attacked online.

Rachel Bryk, 23, jumped off the George Washington Bridge, the bridge between New York and New Jersey, on Thursday night (23 April)

An eyewitness is believed to have seen the young woman leave her purse on the bridge and jump off into the Hudson River.

Bryk’s body has still not been recovered. A funeral will be planned when her body is found.

Her shocked mother Lisa Bryk, from New Jersey, found out on Friday morning.

‘She was super smart, really good with computers,’ she told Gay Star News. ‘We’ll miss her.’

Bryk was diagnosed with rheumatoid arthritis at a young age and lived with chronic pain. This meant she was unable to get a job or keep to a regular schedule.

She found her life in anime, nerd culture and computing. She helped develop an emulator that allows you to play Gamecube and Wii games on your PC.

But because Bryk was talented, and hard-working, and open about being trans, it meant she left herself open to online attacks.

When she said on 4chan that she was considering killing herself, she did not receive support.

‘DO IT, if you’re such a weak willed thin skinned dipshit then fucking do it,’ one anonymous commenter told her.

Even in her death, some on 4chan have described it as a ‘victory’. On news of her death, some commented that she was the ‘whiniest fucking faggot’ and ‘any tranny death is good riddance’.

Such comments clearly left Bryk severely depressed, who would often call herself ‘worthless trash’ on her Ask.fm page. Her Twitter bio page read: ‘[Trigger Warning]: suicide on everything i say.’

At Friday midnight, this was posted on her Twitter.

Rachel Bryk Tweet

The people Bryk worked with mourned her.

‘She will be missed greatly by everyone. We are stronger, better people thanks to knowing her,’ one said.

And another: ‘Rachel was more than just a great programmer. She was a great programmer who always managed to put a smile on my face. I don’t think that there ever will be anyone else quite like her. Rest in peace.’

When we asked Bryk’s mom how the family dealt with her daughter’s transition, she said: ‘It caused a lot of worry, because the world is not a kind place for people who are different.’

If you are considering suicide, please call the US National Suicide Prevention Lifeline on 1-800-273-8255. The LGBT National Helpline is on 888-843-4564, with the Youth line on 800-246-7743.

– See more at: http://www.gaystarnews.com/article/trans-woman-23-kills-herself-after-being-attacked-online270415#sthash.jcThC57T.kXWTRJ3X.dpuf

How Living With and Loving Bruce Jenner Changed My Life Forever | Linda Thompson

How Living With and Loving Bruce Jenner Changed My Life Forever | Linda Thompson.

Umm…okay, so this was unbelievably difficult/wonderful for me to read.

Just soo relate to many things, and so impressed by this amazing woman’s compassion for Jenner.

May they both be blessed with compassionate days.

Bruce Jenner’s Special With Diane Sawyer On ABC’s 20/20 Sets New Bar For Reporting On Transgender Issues

Constance, this is a pretty dang good analysis of the Jenner interview.

*I am calling this person Jenner for now…while Jenner has given request for male pronouns to be used for the interview and identification currently, Jenner has also unequivocally declared as female.  I remember those early days myself, and my mindset that I could/would accommodate everyone else, whom I mistakenly assumed were acting in good faith that matched my own…I was wrong to assume this, and wish now that I had just asserted myself*

*Just in case this is true for Jenner too…I will simply use Jenner’s surname until it becomes clear where on the spectrum Jenner connects in*

Bruce Jenner’s Special With Diane Sawyer On ABC’s 20/20 Sets New Bar For Reporting On Transgender Issues.

Gabriel Arana is senior media editor at The Huffington Post.

Re-Posting Nicole Mott on Bruce Jenner

Constance, here is a post from a Facebook friend concerning Bruce Jenner.  While the opinions about Jenner as a person are hers, the concerns/facts about that vast majority of transgender people are quite real, and she so articulately expressed them.

Thanks, Nikki!  Your words RAWK!

So, Bruce Jenner.

I am so tired of hearing this person’s name. So sick and tired of it…

There’s been this stuff swirling around across what I’ve dubbed, the “Transphere” concerning idols, and all of that…what a crock…

Let me first state that being trans is NOT who you are. It is a PART of who you are like having brown eyes, or green skin (I dunno, maybe you do?). A lot of people choose to make it central to who they are as people, and that’s fine…you know what? Those people can do whatever they want to do, but it STOPS there, with them. I’m not in that box.

When someone sees me, I don’t want the light bulb to go off, “Trans.” in the same way someone else you might see triggers something else. When this happens, we surrender our person hood, in exchange for an issue. We are no longer people, but instead representatives of an issue. Try doing that, and having a meaningful existence…I dare you.

I am me. My life experience has taught me that while being trans may be a permanent part of who I am, and always was, it does NOT define me, and even if it did, that definition it yields for me is vastly different from that of another person who is trans.

When most lay people hear the term, “Transgender” they tend to think it means someone like me, for example, someone just like me.

“Oh, I knew someone who became a guy. That’s cool!”

or,

“Yeah I have a friend who became a girl, he’s still my best friend!” (Obvious gender pronoun errors, because who their friend is, and identifies as isn’t important to you, only what they mean (or meant) to you. Grats on being selfish, and inconsiderate or someone’s inherent self-worth and dignity.

In both of these examples, what’s happened is that people think that transgender means one thing, and my oh my, that couldn’t be further from the truth.

I will say this now, and I seldom ever just post it on my wall, but I was diagnosed with transsexualism, and that was treated under the care of a team of doctors via gender transition everything ranging from Hormones to Surgeries. My lived experiences are absolutely NOTHING like this person’s.

My personal feelings on this “Bruce Jenner” crap comes from a place of protectiveness. I am sick of this story getting air time, and these well-to-do 1%’s feeding their lusts for attention. This isn’t a game!!! People get hurt because of the attitudes propagated by this garbage….and that is EXACTLY what this is.

My protectiveness comes from the suffering of people who are trans. The people who deal with the shit from ground zero EVERY. SINGLE. DAY. We have the highest suicide attempt rate IN THE WORLD with almost ONE in every TWO people attempting. Then you have this person creating a circus of non-sense giving Cis people and others who have no idea what Trans is, so much ammo to continue the abuses, the bullying, the murders, the legally oppressive laws for us to go about our daily lives.

I AM SICK of it.

What’s more important to mention here, and I did hit on this on a previous post on a friend’s wall, is that as a “community” there really is no “trans” community, but more of a loose grouping of people defending human rights, specifically gender identity and expression. We can not agree on anything at all concerning who or what is trans, what that means or doesn’t mean…possibly because there is no categorical way to classify the breadth and scope of the human experience.

Fact is: We are all people, and gender identity and expression, while an innate part of who we are, is not the defining characteristic of who we are…but a smaller component of a much larger entity.

Get this crap out of the media already. There’s no doubt going to be a negative impact because of it, and I can see it all over our local news station’s Facebook pages.

I do not like this person being in the news, and I think it serves to do more harm than good. Most of my posts are usually much more supportive than this, but we’ve seen too many train wrecks with public figures, and I just don’t want, nor do I care to see social attitudes decline and make life more difficult for every day people like those on my friend’s list.

I feel the same way about this, that I do when someone with Autism commits a murder, and they try to lump all people who are autistic into the murderer categories.

Bruce Jenner is NOT an idol, and needs to go away. ASAP.

/rant_over

Now, I’m going tend to my garden. Have a blessed day heart emoticon

tumblr_nmkwzyKHRl1qh41oao1_1280

“Who Are We To Judge…”

Constance, I likely will not post an awful lot about the Jenner Transition Announcement until she gets further underway.

I totally, utterly get where she is at right now.  She is thinking things about how she is not that worried about pronouns, and how she is willing to overlook the othering and policing that is going on right now, yadda yadda yadda…she feels a responsibility to other transgender people to effect a graceful transition with dignity.

But deep down inside…all those things are hurting her, affecting her, wounding her.  She doesn’t need me adding to the cacophony of noise surrounding her (and all of that exacerbated because of the family dynamics she married into). Eventually, she will begin to find her bearings and her voice, or if she already has, she will begin to express it in her own unique ways.

But I will be commenting on things that orbit her transition, things that are revealed and illuminated as a result of her decision, and here is one of them:

On my Facebook page, a friend linked to an article about her transition.  That article is here:

Bruce Jenner’s declaration creates an opportunity

What was telling was in the comments on the Facebook post, all generally very supportive, but one stood out to me.  It simply said “Who are we to judge…”

“Who are we to judge…”

Constance, do you see why that comment jumped out at me?  Yes?  Jot down your thoughts about it…or No?  No you do not see anything odd about that comment in relation to gender identity?

Well, Cis-Constance, imagine yourself being introduced to someone, and them very kindly and sagely assessing you and then saying to you and everyone “Who are we to judge…” and then shrugging as if to say “to each their own”…

 

as if your gender identity is something that is up for judgement in the first place!

as if your gender identity is an article of clothing that you simply decided to wear that day.

as if your gender identity was a moral choice you made or make.

Gender orientation is put into the same classification as sexual orientation and then judged as a moral choice, and this is simply incorrect and unfair.

There is orientation that is a given…and then there are behaviors that descend from choices that we make as creatures who are moral creatures and subject to moral constraints as determined by God and current cultural climate (and those are rarely congruent, btw)…the behaviors themselves are what I choose to do…but the orientation is who I was born to be.

Orientation is not moral behavior.  It is simply the given baseline.

You as a cis-gender person are never subjected to the statement “Oh…you say you are a (fill in your biological chromosomal state).  I see.  Well, who am I to judge?”

And that, Constance, is the very epitome of cis-gender privilege!

Don’t get me wrong…I love the compassion that is at root behind the commenter’s post…but gender orientation is not a matter subject to judgement any more than race is, or that there is a brain in a skull, or that there are arms and legs on a human.

The deep underlying ignorance that is being exposed in the light of gender-education right now is the notion that gender-variance is a moral issue!  The deep presupposition fostered in our binary is that any person who is cross-gendered is by definition subject to moral assessment should they decide to authentically live out who they are in spite of the external casing they are housed in!!

Do you see this?

The commenter is correct:  we are not the judge of one another and should not judge one another.  But the issue that she applied this moral principle speaks volumes of how far we have to go yet as a culture, and why we transgender people are subject to such tremendous othering.

Even the way we are supported is often times OTHERING!

I have the same internal response when people say to me “Hey, whatever makes you happy makes me happy”…and they are sincerely “for” me in terms of their willingness to accept me.

But they have no idea just how deeply they sentenced me to more time in the gender penitentiary.

“Mr. & Mrs. Cis-Gender Constance:  Tear down this wall!!2008-5-10 Auschwitz No 11 - Final 2-1-2009 750

If You Are A New Reader…

…I want to invite you to look back thru the months to dip into prior posts.  There is a plethora of plenty there!  Poetry, posts about a wide range of the issues faced in life that are poignantly illustrated by gender orientation, theological musings and spiritual experiences recounted.

You can discover who “Constance” is…and you are invited to join her if you wish.

You can definitely see growth and development in me, as I live and breathe in transition from a not-out but self-aware very dysphoric transgender woman who is perceived as a white male of power, position, and privilege to a more congruent and out transgender woman who is now regularly othered, policed, and yes occasionally even perceived as who I actually am and received in joy.

You will see the journey of nearly every transgender person who endures the loss of so many things, so many people, in the desperate quest to gain themselves.  You will witness how this quest is defined by the defenders of the paradigm as selfish and self-centered…when it is far more about finding a fort of safety from suicidal ideation and death.

But above all…hopefully…you will find a person who is making the transition that every single human being must find a way to make:  that transition from death to life…from works to grace…from self-centered ego-oriented pursuits to other-oriented sacrificial service.

And maybe, just maybe?  That life motto of mine can at the end of it all be found true:

Yielded Vessel Yielding Blessingtumblr_nlflo6rI7y1rrvadyo1_1280

Do Justice.  Love Mercy.  Walk Humbly.
Much Love, 
Charissa Grace

PS:  The best way to investigate the archives of Grace Notes is to use the calendar at the bottom of the blog page…or utilize the search function in the right hand margin.

“This Has To Stop”: Okay, whatchya gonna do about it?

Her Name Was Taylor, by Lori Duron

Constance, I often run across the statement “This has to stop” in connection with accounts of the bullying and suicide epidemics that transgender people face.  And that is good, that people are beginning to get it, the monstrous othering and policing that we face every single G Dam day of our lives simply because we were “guilty” of being born into this life with the knowledge that our gender orientation and our assigned birth biology are at odds.

But I am restive with the ease with which in this internet age we can flourish our fingers over a keyboard and then move on from post with the feeling that we have actually “done something”, when all we have actually done is in effect restate the problem without attempting resolution.  It is sorta like having a math test and re-writing the problem
6 + 11 = x      as   
x = 11 + 6  (and we be sure to draw attention to our use of different colored font and italics).

Compassion is a bicameral quality.  It has two lobes.  It has the feeling, heart lobe…that throbbing, dripping, bleeding tender outpouring of sympathetic alignment if we have not experienced something for ourselves (and just so you know:  if you are not transgender, it is impossible for you to empathize with a dysphoric person, just as if you are white you cannot empathize with a person of color…you can sympathizebut don’t deceive yourself into thinking you empathize)…

…but for it to be true compassion, it must have the action side as well.  What will you do with your sympathy?

Lori Duron has again posted a truly moving recounting of a tragic tale of bullying and othering and policing that ended in another transgender life lost…and I will recite yet again the litany of 2015:  a lost transgender life approximately every 30 hours since 2015 began!

As if it is not enough of a burden to face:  the nearly overwhelming unendurable constant achy angst of dysphoria.  Oh no…to that is added the onslaught of ignorance, fear, and hatred as expressed in the evil of bullying which drives so many to self-destructive action in addition to having to bear gender dysphoria!

But Lori goes one better:  She posts people you can email, places you can step up and actually take action that extends beyond the hypothetical feel good phrase “This has to stop” and manifests in real, measurable action…and takes baby steps as a compassionate act.

And then I myself will go you one better:  there are marches coming up in major cities…in June.  They have various names, monikers…but at heart they are the same, in that they are opportunities for you to express–directly–your support with your body side by side with other bodies, facing gawkers and haters, the curious and disinterested, and others who have walked in solitary confinement in their skins…

Transgender Pride Marches.

Yes, there will be people there who look different than you…who walk or talk different than you…and who want/feel/think/need/deserve exactly the same things you do as human beings!  Your presence there as an ally will mean more to them than any of them can say…in addition to the emails you write or the lawmakers you contact, or the PTA meetings you attend to make your cis-gender privileged voice heard that it is not going to be tolerated, this epidemic of transgender suicide and murder…and your other actions that you are thinking of and planning to take.

You are thinking of them?  Actions to take?  Plans to do something?  Someone you can maybe even smile at?  Befriend?

In the Portland Area, I believe Transgender Pride March Day is June 13th.  I hope to be there and intend to be, God willing.  I intend to walk, with a sense of presence and dignity (a word I use very reluctantly right now as it has been wielded against me like a sharp phallic sword to rape my heart and spirit, but I use it none the less to mean a sense of presence that contains worth and significance simply because I am a human being)…I intend to hold my head high and not angled down, and my eyes moving from face to face and eye to eye rather than always staring at the space in between…

I hope to see you there, beside me…cis, trans.  But if I don’t?  It would mean the world to see you standing at the curb, a smile on your face and a nod in your eyes.

This has to stop…this expression of emotion that lacks the manifestation of action.

If you don’t support in word and deed, then you don’t support.tumblr_mv4lfyu1MH1szrg39o1_r1_500

The Impossible Demands of Dating Under the Pressures of Rape Culture

Constance, I found this article over here:  http://everydayfeminism.com/2015/04/rape-culture-dating/ 

I am posting it because I have to make the same calculations as a transwoman that a cis-gender woman makes, and then make them again because trans, which shrinks down the safe zone even further.  Fortunately for me, I am not dealing with dating, but there is still such risk.

Please read and consider the implications.

Originally published on Robot Hugs 

(Trigger Warning: Sexual assault and rape culture)

When you’re dating, you may get lots of advice on keeping yourself safe. At the same time, you can get pressure to be carefree. And if something bad happens, you’re blamed for not properly calculating the risks! So what gives?

You shouldn’t have to carry the demand to be both available and super capable of preventing your own assault. This comic says it all.

With Love,
The Editors at Everyday Feminism

part 1

2014-12-04-Risky Date