After More Than 20 Years as Conservative Leader, Paul Williams Comes Out as Transwoman

This story is very parallel to my own.
I encourage reading it, especially for the understanding
of a Gospel of Incarnation rather than a Gospel of Law.
“Transgender teens with unsupportive parents have a suicide rate 13 times higher than their peers. They are the most at risk group in the nation. Most of those unsupportive parents are Evangelicals.

“I have been in personal contact with thousands of LGBTQ individuals and their families from seven countries on four continents. Almost without exception these souls are Christians who have been ostracized from their churches and/or families. They always ask the same painful question, ‘What do I do now?’ I feel the weight of the responsibility.

“In my previous work, I hoped to save people from spiritual suffering. In my current work, I hope to save people from dying.”

Paula went on to state: “I do not care about their (evangelicals’) brand of orthodoxy.””I have no interest in debating it. It is of little interest to me.

However, I do care about their orthopraxy, how they practice the Christian faith. I find it lacking. I find any religion lacking that leads with judgment instead of leading with acceptance and love.”

Source: After More Than 20 Years as Conservative Leader, Paul Williams Comes Out as Transwoman

Unfurling From A Set-Free Throat | Charissa’s Grace Notes

I am gunna begin reposting older poetry, here on Grace Notes…because Facebook is a wasteland of the driest thirstiest most stingy desert sand that has ever been. Proverbs would say that Facebook has two sisters:  “Give” and “Give”.

My older work is good…at least, in my own internal scales of what I like and do not like, it weighs out as treasure.  I feel it in my bones…it RINGS of true truth.  But it is unwieldy, this blog, in getting to those older poems…one must make time and space to even find them, let alone to eat them and digest them…

…because my poems are not immediately burnable carb calories…

Anyway…here they are, such as they are.

This particular poem is about finding my voice as symbol of finding myself.  It examines paradigms and presuppositions, and advocates for freedom from old superstitions and lies…and freedom to timeless Truth.
I still struggle to dig it out,
that splinter you shoved into me,
down my throat without so much
as a shot of whiskey or
a shot in the dark.

and you are so certain, sure
of how to walk the world an…

Source: Unfurling From A Set-Free Throat | Charissa’s Grace Notes

List: If People Talked About Other Things the Way They Talked About Gender Identity – McSweeney’s Internet Tendency

This is pretty funny…and it shows just how arbitrarily the binary was imposed on gender orientation(s) strictly based on the most commonly presenting genitalia!

Source: List: If People Talked About Other Things the Way They Talked About Gender Identity – McSweeney’s Internet Tendency

CHECK THE SCIENCE: BEING TRANS IS NOT A ‘CHOICE’

I am posting this for those readers who still may not understand the complex physiological and psychological factors that work together to form our gender orientations.

In light of the fact that the Bible is utterly silent regarding the so-called “morality” of gender, this article could be especially helpful for those of you who claim you love Jesus and yet treat transgender humans like Hell.

May God spare you the kind of treatment that you have handed out to others in the name of Jesus…but that is not how it works, is it?  The fact of the matter is that the exact standard that you employ to show your rejection and hate of transgender humans is the one that Jesus will hold up for you on your day of dawning…

http://www.ozy.com/pov/check-the-science-being-trans-is-not-a-choice/69726?utm_source=aah1&utm_medium=cpc&utm_campaign=pp&utm_content=inf_17_92_2&tse_id=INF_0b1151f026b511e7ab1b4bd69f1788b7

The unlikely Texans fighting anti-trans bill SB6 | Fusion

For all who want to:
A:  Understand transgender issues and origins
B:  Want to be allies in the granting of human rights
C:  Believe that being a christian precludes hateful condemnatory behavior
D:  Have a trans loved one(s) that you wish to support

This article is for you.

I personally have experienced every single thing mentioned in this article.  As a full grown middle aged human…the loss of family connection;  the loss of employment;  the loss of social standing, the hate-filled behavior towards me of literal total strangers; physical violence…

…not to mention the sort of thing that happened when I was little, and my choice of dissociation from myself.  Only God can ever really measure that damage done as a child…damage that was not “intentional” but was fully empowered by the cultural forces of the binary and thus did no less damage.

This mom literally tried all the things that transgender rights opponents espouse…read her story.  A conservative christian family with bona fides that may well make St Paul’s head spin!  The accusation that parents’ poor parenting is responsible for the “mental illness” of the child is revealed as the false belief that it is.

This child is amazingly strong and persistent.  I did not have that strength…I caved…and nearly died for the next 50 years.

All this damage, all this death…all because of clothing, genitalia, and bathrooms.

And trump supporter?  Please pay special attention to the reporting of the trump administration’s specific and deliberate plans to take away transhuman rights!  Just exactly as I told you.  Supporting this absolute fucker taking office is the deliberate empowering of someone who wants to hurt me…

as if you could what…beat the trans out of us?  Pray it off of us?  Be sure and notice in the pull quotes below the full grown relative who vows to send this little kindergarten kid to the hospital on a stretcher if that child was in a restroom that his 22 year old niece was in!!!

That is literally flabbergasting to me!  Really!!???  What is a 5 year old child gunna be able to do to a 22 year old woman??

No matter how many…no, even if you slaughtered every single transgender person?  We would be back in the next generation…because we are a function of human reproduction, and not a function of “social engineering”

Kai and Kimberly Shappley in the backyard of their house in Pearland, TX
Kai and Kimberly Shappley in the backyard of their house in Pearland, TX

“…No matter how much punishment this kid got, you couldn’t beat it out of her,” Kimberly said. “You couldn’t pray it out, I couldn’t cast it out.” Indeed, Kai was having none of it. Sometimes she would wait until Kimberly was on the toilet to taunt her from just out of striking range: “You know I’m a girl.” Other times, she began praying within her mother’s earshot that God would “let Joseph” (Kai’s former name) “go home and be with Jesus.”

Kai’s prayer was Kimberly’s breaking point. That, and learning about the sky-high suicide rate for trans kids; according to one study, 41% of trans youth had attempted suicide—a rate almost ten times higher than their cisgender counterparts.

“There are so many trans kids who don’t have her persevering, persistent spirit,” Kimberly said. “And if Kai didn’t have that spirit, I would have succeeded in breaking her, into conforming into what I was trying to make her be. And we would have all been ok with that until she killed herself, at 14, or 13, or 11, or 20, or 50….

“…Still, the social fallout for Kimberly was swift. Trans advocates often say “everyone loses someone” when they transition; Kimberly’s family lost almost everyone. While one of Kai’s uncles helped his niece pick out new outfits, most of her extended family distanced themselves. One aunt threatened to call CPS on Kimberly. Other relatives shared a Facebook post from a Houston-area preacher, proposing a training day where the church would teach children how to spot and report trans kids at their schools. A cousin sent Kimberly a Facebook message warning if he ever saw Kai in a bathroom with his 22-year-old daughter, Kai would “need a stretcher.”

“A best friend from the family’s church, where Kimberly served in ministry for years, stopped their years-long 5 AM prayer phone calls. When Kimberly attended a school board meeting last June to discuss the accommodation of trans students, she said one pastor from her church showed up to speak out against them…”

Source: The unlikely Texans fighting anti-trans bill SB6 | Fusion

trump is an absolute fucker

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I will never, ever be able to accept that someone thinks that they can support me while not only supporting trump, but condoning and extolling him and what he says and does.

I have no fellowship with him, in any way, shape, or form.

trump and his kind wish to not only hurt me, but also eradicate me, as if they can make it so that “there is no such thing” as transgender people.

And there are people who refuse to see this.

It blows my mind.

To list the ways, the deeds and the decisions that add the substance to the statement would take a month…but it is all easily found, at least it is easily found by anybody who uses other media sources than FOX and the so-called “Christian” Broadcasting Network (or some variant thereof).

Truthfully, I have such a sinking feeling that were it ever to become “illegal” to be transgender (as if that twisting of words could somehow ever define me), said individuals would think they were doing a work of God when they joined the Roman soldiers who killed all boys under two years old in the time of Jesus’s birth…and I would be dead.

trump is an absolute fucker.
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Oh Brazil! You Never Knew Me!

I recall writing this in somewhat of a fugue…for my bestie Dani.


Landscape of Disruption and thick Decadence
washing ever over me in those thin emerald waves
teal and deep blue, muddy yellow and tan.

Your streets of light and music,
aimless, drifting bacchanalia…

Source: Oh Brazil! You Never Knew Me!

Living Above the Curse (Part 3 – The Curse of Man)

Here is part three.

All three parts of this series are written by a brilliant, insightful and passionate human being of the female gender…and she uses the FULL RANGE of her palate to express these truths.

Hey dudes…listen the fuck up!  Pull your heads out of the sands of fear and your fingers out of your ears and shut yer pie-holes from babbling all about the estrogen the estrogen and LISTEN.  You do not get to pass judgement on sumfin cus you are either comfortable or uncomfortable…you are under the same standard of restoration as the rest of humanity…is it the Way, and is it the Truth, and is it the Life? Whether you LIKE it or not…whether it makes you FEEL GOOD or not…

Thank you Jennifer.  Your words are truth and life.

We all know the Venus and Mars stereotypes. Women are complex multitasking nurturers, men are singularly-focused aggressive hunter/providers.

Woman: with the flu, a cramping, hemorrhaging uterus and a baby attached to her boob pushes through her daily myriad of responsibilities to take care of the family

vs.

male: devastated by Man Cold.

Source: Living Above the Curse (Part 3 – The Curse of Man)

Living Above the Curse (Part 2 – Desire)

My friend Jennifer over at Cage-Free Christian continues with her 3 part series on the Curse of Knowledge…that there IS good and evil without knowing WHAT that good and/or evil is…and how this affects us in different ways.

Her insights into the ancient text and what it speaks to in timeless truth about who women are, who men are…who we are not…are prescient and powerful.

I heartily endorse her writings…and for the record?  I find the commenters in Part One and Part Three to be officially full of SHIT!!

Are all men jerks? Of course. So are all women. We’re all assholes – foolish, narcissistic assholes, every single last one of us. Sexism in every form – misogyny, misandry; bigotr…

Source: Living Above the Curse (Part 2 – Desire)

Dread and Presences

I am reblogging this poem from 2 years ago…here is the key passage:

“I step to the rail and look back
peering intently into the fog
thick and lingering,
but 2014 is shrouded, hidden
and if I hadn’t lived it
I wouldn’t have believed it
was anything more
than a dream.

It was a year that hollowed out
thinned out, emptied out
but never declared its intention.
I don’t think it ever knew
or if it even could…”

Charissa's Grace Notes

Dread.

I feel it still.
Laying at the base of my throat and throbbing
dully, quietly slumbering with one leering eye
cocked open always and leaning towards my heart.

My heart…
chipped and worked, touched and chilled
by the frozen fingers of dread

and shards of it lay scattered at my feet
clear, jagged glimmering
broken.tumblr_nf01s3Hemc1sjr8bdo1_1280

I step to the rail and look back
peering intently into the fog thick and lingering,
but 2014 is shrouded, hidden
and if I hadn’t lived it I wouldn’t have believed it
was anything more than a dream.

It was a year that hollowed out
thinned out, emptied out
but never declared its intention.
I don’t think it ever knew or if it even could.

It was a year without windows
but many doors
and ladies
and tigers.

There is more to life than meets the eye,
more than can be measured by the senses or a census
but this morning there is just the fog behind
and…

View original post 115 more words

Silken Tears: Written in the memory of Leelah Alcorn

As a poem…I love this one.  I was blessed to capture some delicate and beautiful imagery, and it emerged in a nice meter that is augmented by the rhyming patterns and their shifting nature…matching the shifting nature of the poem.

Frankly, I was envious of her…and horrified with myself that I was so…this was written in Leelah Alcorn’s memory.

I cannot read this without weeping.


i saw her there, in the dark woods,
so fair of movement, fair of face
she walked beneath the milky moon
and bathed in silken light like lace.

she glowed with beauty’s blessing kist
upon her b…

Source: Silken Tears: Written in the memory of Leelah Alcorn

To All From My Past Who Read Here

Hi.

If you are someone from my past and you read here, I want you to know something.

You are welcome to read here.
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If you are someone from my past, and you are genuinely open to learning new things, updated understandings of the ways that technology has revealed realities regarding gender and DNA…if you are willing to meet me…Charissa Grace White…and truly receive me as you would any human being you had met and were getting to know, then you are welcome to be in contact with me.

But know that my choice to transition is not up for debate…it is made and done.  To debate that with you would be as silly as debating with you whether or not it was the right thing to marry the person I chose.  So I will not allow this…I will not put myself at the end of your firing range to become your scapegoat for the social ills you so deeply dread.
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And finally…if you are someone who reads here while thinking of me as that freak who is a “man” but is deceived and deluded by the devil and is now under demonic influence for thinking “he is a woman”, then just GTFU…ur dum.  Holding this position is like boasting about how stupid, intractable and ignorant you are of the incredible body of literature on the subject.  You ought to be asking yourself why you are so deeply upset over this!  Why does it bug you so much?

I am by far a better person than I ever was before…more of what people have always loved about me and less of what people have always despised about me.

Just go away if you are in that latter category…I don’t care how long I have known you.  The length of time you have known me is directly proportional to the ought you are obligated to in connection with me!  You ought to be more compelled to read the literature…you ought to be more compelled to know the open flower and stop worshipping the tightly closed bud.
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There is a male who flat out broke off a relationship that was over 3 decades old, because I “had crossed a river he would not cross”.  He has had zero contact with me since.  This in spite of how his actions violate the very gospel he claims to love.  This in spite of the countless hours we spent together, the countless actions of service and love and support, the walking thru darkness on his behalf…

…clearly the issue is on him.

But I bring him up to tell you that his is the party you want to go join if you are in that latter category.

I am me…free…and flying.  You can fly too, if you would actually take responsibility for your choices and your failures to choose…your fate is in your choice, and may you find surrender to Love as you choose…
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ever Spring, ever Autumn

it looks the same to you
whether you stand
in winter or summer

…the gate of my heart…

stark and golden and hot
against that steely variegated sky,
all clouds and light run thru God’s Grater
and piled up in slivers and shavings
of glory and stellar glimmers

of more…
The Great Gate

I stand in spring and autumn
my feet in water and my face in fire,
my roots ever fed with freedom
and my branches ever shedding
the ends of growth and fruitful life
blossoming, falling, spilling to earth
in cascades of truth and fevered dreams.
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my angles and lines seem stark to you
and you miss my curves and swaying
limber-love and hurly-heart throbbing
with the promise of harvests coming
and heavy with the presence of harvests here.

walk thru and look…
if you see me you will know
and if you do not see me
step away and scratch your head
with lightening bolts that shimmer
and strike the earth and the sky
and the glittering diamond waves
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and wander,
wander
as you ponder
how I look
the same from
all sides

(to your blind eyes unimaginative)
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or walk in awe
with leaping eyes
and hungry heart
marvelling how vast
is the territory and
how beautiful the land

Beyond the beyond

that you
just entered
into like
a child

with
eyes
opened
wide in
wonder
wriggles
harriet tubman

enters
into this
vast untrammeled life
and running from nothing
to the endless Something
of that great
ever Spring,
ever Autumn.
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On Ghomeshi, Memory and Trauma

I simply have to press this…I am the victim of stories that intimate people tell about me that are lies.

Flat out.  They lie, because of many reasons, and I think all of the reasons are understandable:  my transition, their own cognitive dissonance, it’s easier to scapegoat me than accept that their life is the way it is as a consequence of their choices…it doesn’t matter why they lie.

I still love them, because I cannot do otherwise.  I am incapable of not loving them.  But the consequences of that lie are stunningly strong and toxic.

My only hope is that they come to their senses in a way similar to what happened here in this article.

************************************************************************************

Have you ever had a moment when you suddenly realize that your memory of an event is not actually what happened? A few years ago I was talking to someone about a pretty life-altering event that happened…

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Source: On Ghomeshi, Memory and Trauma

Post Script To “The Aggregate”

I just read a blog post of a new friend…oh, I have known her for quite some time, but recent events have birthed a friendship, I sense…

Her blog post broke my heart for her and her loved ones, as I intimately know the road that she is venturing down…I survived it.  It rose up in me so fiercely, so thoroughly that she not walk alone on this road…

…and I know that I have a reason to persist against the aggregate.  Maybe by pushing back and pushing back hard I can make a space, make a place for the ones who are coming behind me to walk in peace and liberty, and not have to every learn the equations of the aggregate.

Take heart, Sparkle Mom…I love you guys!!  ❤
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“Oh, you’re trans? But you look so good!”

What Cis People Say To Trans People Vs. What We Hear

“Oh, you’re trans? But you look so good!”


Rory Midhani for BuzzFeed News

Meredith Talusan is an LGBT Staff Writer for BuzzFeed News and is based in New York.
Contact Meredith Talusan at meredith.talusan@buzzfeed.com.
Illustrator:  Contact Rory Midhani at info@rorymidhani.com.

A Performance Lecture on the Theology of Gender

I have seen this wonderful man in person and very much enjoyed his presentation.

I am posting this for anyone curious about a theological perspective about matters of gender, presented in dramatic performance and gentle words.

 

When Your Violin is Supposed to Be a Cello | Let’s Queer Things Up!

“In a single scale, I broke my own heart.”

Ohhh SAM!!!  This.

THIS!!

This article captures it so very well.  In a single article, he made me weep!

Source: When Your Violin is Supposed to Be a Cello | Let’s Queer Things Up!

Yes, clothes matter. | the girl inside

Source: Yes, clothes matter. | the girl inside

This is a well written article and I recommend it

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Hear Me Screaming (Transgender Remembrance Day 2015)

I am a ghost wandering in the dark
and you don’t even know,
you don’t even see.

Wandering lost and in sorrowful shades
and you don’t even know,
you don’t even see.

I am a wailing voice keening in grief
and you don’t even know,
you don’t even see.

Wrapped in a funeral shroud black and white
and you don’t even know,
you don’t even see.

You walk into the nook, seeing me here
but you don’t even know,
you don’t even see

you don’t even hear me screaming.

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

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.

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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?

Death Don’t Have No Mercy In This Land

I want to say something to you, cis-gender friends. Please PLEASE hear this heart, and not a strident voice. Do not mistake my intensity for blathery emotional anger-slinging.
Do you know that the number of murders of transwomen has already surpassed the TOTAL for 2014?
I am talking about people…just like me.10888800_860222750703458_5712320641834860244_n
For the last few years every time there is another murder of a transwoman the news gets pushed around in trans-circles with sorrow and shock and outrage accompanied by cries of “this HAS to stop!!”
And yet here we are…in mid-August and already surpassing the totals for last year…and this is just murders, by the way…the numbers are even higher if you throw in suicide.
My dear friends: this is not ever going to stop until YOU decide it must. It is on YOU.tumblr_n1l8erJ0Tc1rlcnpko1_1280
Because what power do we trans-women have? What standing do I have? When I am spit at for simply walking in public? When I am hated on with eyes for holding my head high and forgetting about gender for a moment and just flowing in being like any other person can?
And then there is the intersection of race and gender variance, and ohhhh the absolute tragedy of how the blind become even more the blinder…
…because it is the same with race too…the stink of that zombie that lurches freely thru our society eating hearts like rotten apples and screaming for more, that stench is even greater than the sheer indifference shown to the plight of transwomen, so if you are a transwoman AND a woman of color?tumblr_ndcafcJAat1qdrgtco1_1280
Well, to know just how that is, simply read of the condition of the remains in some of these cases…faces bashed into a bloody mash…dismemberment…stabbed with an ice pick repeatedly…dumped in the trash…lit on fire…
Cis-friends, until this is no longer okay with you, we shall continue to be harvested by death with impunity.  Our blood cries out and will never stop, never cease.  Until you choose to use your privilege for someone “less than”, then the wolves will continue to hunt and the transwomen die.  And the rest of us will continue to flap our gums about what “has to”, knowing full well that stop is not a choice a ravenous beast makes.

How many is it gonna take to push you to the place where you yourselves will step up?  One a day?  Would that do it?An Indian worker removes the petiole from red chilies at Shertha village, near Ahmadabad, India, Wednesday, Feb. 15, 2012. A worker earns around ten Rupees ( 0.20 USD) for removing the petiole of 20 kilograms (4.4 Pounds) of red chili. (AP Photo/Ajit Solanki)

How about a hundred a day?  One Hundred Women a day…marched to the town square and shot dead at dawn.
Will that do it?  And if so, then what is the difference between a hundred a day and one a day?
What is the difference between one a day and one a week?
What is the value of a transgender life?tumblr_nnlmpdE8Q91sthjo3o1_1280

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.

The only way to respond to my transgender child’s desperate plea was with love – The Globe and Mail


The only way to respond to my transgender child’s desperate plea was with love – The Globe and Mail
.

Oh Constance…oh.  This.  I felt this myself, and I rejoice in the knowledge that this child can benefit from the progress we are making in understanding gender identity and what it is, where it is, and how to live and be fruitful when the body and mind are at opposite ends of this spectrum.

Oh Reader:  the stories like this are multitudinous…how long will you dwell in that territory staked out by your ignorant and obstinate predecessors who labelled the epileptic demon possessed or the sufferer of birth marks on the face as touched by satan?

Reader, how long will you add the talmud of your own carnal mind to the Word of God and then use that as a club on your fellow image-bearers who are different than you?

How long will you continue to push your chips into the middle of the table and bet on a losing hand?

It makes me sad…it makes me glad that I have been delivered from that place, and yes, I have “lost all things” but here is what I have gained:  knowing what it means to walk with Jesus “outside the city”, having counted all things loss for this Honor and Delight.  He cut off all other sources of life, and all the more to His glory that it would be not me who lives but Christ who lives in me.

But keep reading…maybe one of these days it will penetrate your fear that nothing can separate you from the love of God:  not even swimming in rivers that you imagine I have crossed.

(c) Salford Museum & Art Gallery; Supplied by The Public Catalogue Foundation

(c) Salford Museum & Art Gallery; Supplied by The Public Catalogue Foundation

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.

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.

It’s The Wonder

Lately it’s been getting harder,
harder to breathe…my chest
is burdened, weighed down,
constricted and heaving
and breath, a woman writhing in labor,
gasps and tears at air so thick
it only gives up in pieces ragged
and jagged and grippy.

The older I get, the harder it is
to breathe.

Doctors call it asthma, they say
I’ve had it all my life
(who knew?  Not I!)
And me none the wiser, I just
worked so hard and suffered harder
and swam straight on thru strife.

But recently, I coughed real hard!
And what I thought was sputum
was really a fresh bud coughed up
and then spit out for good!

That’s when I realized, my lungs
have turned into a flower bed
of Mama’s Blossoms Fragrant
and oh so beautiful.

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).
tumblr_mvq8fapdjW1qzwnc1o1_1280

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.

Milwaukee Public Schools: We Are Watching

I noticed in the referral logs of my site that Milwaukee Public Schools has been on my blog.  I am guessing they have someone monitoring public opinion on their decade long murder of a transgender woman.

Her name was Karis Anne Ross.

Karis Anne Ross.

Your convenience and desire to remain untroubled by the actions of some of your employees were the weapons that were used…but the worst part of it?  10 years.

10 years is 520 weeks…36,502 days.
And in all that time, just one firm decision could have not only saved her life, but ended the torment she endured.

We transgender people are tough…you have to be to survive dysphoria at all.  And we are patient, long-suffering, and simply will do just about anything to be given a chance at a normal life…and those qualities are the very things that led to her enduring unimaginable suffering and harassment.

Because maybe, just maybe…tomorrow will be different.

Well, alas for Karis…it wasn’t.  Different.

It was the same as it has ever been…kill the transgender woman for the crime of choosing to live out her true identity as a woman and eschewing her biological assignment at birth.  She knew she was more than her genitalia…

too bad that her district never figured that out.

So yeah…comb the web, school district.  I for one will certainly do my best to keep my lil nook of the internet up to speed as to what is or is not happening.

And btw…don’t bother trying to enable my bullies…
I don’t work for you.
I know my value.
10592980_386188881528382_5354670903546491894_n

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.

20150614_093457

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:

“It’s A Healthy Little Baby!” (Gender TBD)

So Constance, on Sunday there was a birth announcement.  A child had been born, healthy and mom was okay too.  Everyone was happy and feeling good about a new little life in the world…and then came this:

“It’s a healthy little girl!”  Followed by a smattering of applause and some coos and happy noises…

…and just like that a potential nightmare of dysphoria is begun.

Can you see it here?  First of all, the very first thing we are told about this child is its gender, before anything else.  Everyone wanted to know this, and from this point on, that child is going to be socialized and treated according to cultural customs and expectations that may have nothing to do with who that child really is, and could be quite harmful to the child in that they would run directly counter to the child’s identity.

And we know the child’s gender how?  Why, because we looked between the legs…and now a human being’s first most basic categorizing has been accomplished in the name of genitalia.  Never mind the fact that there are all kinds of intersex conditions that only show up upon chromosomal examination…no need for that, right?

Now…the odds are that this child will turn out to be female.  But those odds are not as long as what everyone thinks.  And just think…if that child turns out to be like I was, and learns that their very being is wrong, is naught and ought not…

Not to mention how I felt, sitting there…in the midst of allies and friends mind you!  Who in all the reflex of the ritual sat there and gendered a human being less than a week old and without even having met the child let alone heard her tell us who she is! They would all say they support me…but it is sadly still a support after a couple of layers of thought and reminding themselves that I am “identifying female”.

And that makes me cry, because I identify as a human being. 

am female.

I get criticized often for being persnickety about words…I get anxious about what people mean and question closely and then feel like I am an irritant when others say that they were not speaking as specifically as I took what was said.

But I am that way because of things like this…when a whole identity has been rendered a done deal without even a word being said by the person thus sentenced.

When will it be natural for us to announce our healthy children, and the great anticipation that we have in finding out who they are?  Think how they would be brought up!  Think how much more balanced and developed they would be.

Oh, and don’t worry…they will tell us their gender.  It is that basic.  You can rest assured of that simply by reflecting on how you would react if someone sought to police you as a gender other than that which you are.

Gender is more than genitalia…when will our understandings of one another be so too?

Until then, I will find myself alone, and sitting embarrased while gender privilege is handed out right and left, and a certain ratio doomed by this policing to join me in the ranks of those of who sit in the pew together…all alone.tumblr_nnzn95pYkG1rznpc8o1_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.

“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

Please: Try to Grasp This, And Change…

Constance, this quote below…just this.

All you have is your experience in this world.  The good…the bad…the whole and broken…add to that the sorts of experiences that the quote speaks of.

I would add one thing:  dysphoria is a real condition that exists, of utter dislocation that transcends understanding, acceptance, and action.  It can be managed and worked around, even built into certain things?  But it can never be thought away, prayed away, or believed away.

The brain and body of a person with gender dysphoria will never flow together
They are oil and vinegar.

As such, they can be a fabulous and tasty dressing…but they will not find the congruence that is present with a cis-gendered person.

So all the crap and stuff that all humans endure?  Differently abled people endure all that with additional conditions placed on their lives…dysphoria is one of them.

That doesn’t give me or any dysphoric person a pass…because each human has conditions on them that are invisible to everyone else.

So be tender hearted…understanding…full of forgiveness…and above all be kind.

Lives depend on it.

Of all the things I keep trying to tell cis people, “don’t presume your child’s gender” is the one that they consistently, deliberately refuse to understand and it is so deeply telling.

You cannot truly understand the transgender experience, and cannot count yourself an ally, until you accept that the trauma of being transgender is not inherent, it is a product of being coerced into thinking that you had absolutely no choice but to be the gender you were assigned.

Not “born with”, not “biologically”, the gender you were assigned.

The problem is assignment. The problem is doctors and parents believing it is their place to dictate their child’s gender, starting before they can even conceptualize what a gender is, let alone have the mental development necessary to object to what they’re given. This defines a child’s entire life, cuts short countless possibilities. It etches itself into the fabric of our developing minds and it is a ticking psychological time bomb for those children who are given a gender assignment that they cannot or do not wish to live with. This culture of dictated identity must end if transgender people are ever to be regarding as whole and equal members of society.tumblr_nlge4suDYH1rqi803o1_540

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

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“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