Perfect but unwanted.

Someone wrote…

Sometimes, when I’m around women I feel like a fraud, and when I’m around men I feel like a failure. It’s as if my body is a perfect but unwanted drag act.

What’s your experience?

And what are you thinking about gender right now?

Posted by on July 23rd, 2010 at 08:00 am

Category: your voice 20 comments »

20 Responses to “Perfect but unwanted.”

  1. Nox

    wow i couldn’t have stated my own feelings better than this


  2. Fionn

    Woah. That really hits home-that’s exactly my struggle with being around people =/


  3. Anonymous

    That hit home for me too. /: Especially when strangers call us out as a group, e.g. ‘You’re a lucky guy! You have 6 girls with you! (when we hang out with our only male friend) I feel icky and weird after such comments…


  4. freaxy

    with many, I can relate, to a T


  5. Cole

    I’ve been looking for the right way to describe this feeling – you said it perfectly.


  6. lulu

    I would not have identified with this statement five years ago but the more real I get with my gender relationship, the more I am having this exact feeling. But I am also having the positive side of the same feelings, i.e. sometimes when I am around women I feel like i am totally exploding our notions of what ‘woman’ can be and when I am around men I feel like if they watched me carefully they would see what being a real man is all about.

    I guess it is about the layer of interpretation that we add to the fact of difference.


  7. Jessica

    This is the heart of why I think I’d not be happy as a transsexual person. If I were a man, I’d want to be a MAN and if I were to be a woman, I’d want to be a WOMAN. As good as medical technique is these days, this kind of comprehensive transmogrification is still impossible. You can fool everybody but yourself.

    So, in the end, I decided I’d rather be me, whatever that is. It’s not always easier, but then, I am a work in progress.


  8. Meike

    @Jessica and @lulu, I so agree. Describes how I feel perfectly, as does the original statement. Beautifully written!


  9. Sam

    I never knew what that feeling was, but you’ve put it into words better than I ever could have.


  10. Sarah Dopp

    Hey Jessica — just a quick check in. I personally identify with this quote, too, but I’m not comfortable with it being taken the extra step to critique transsexuality. How you identify is yours to claim, but please don’t suggest that trans men and women are not real (or in all caps) men and women. That’s not fair to a lot of people here.



  11. Rubyben

    I like how people are identifying with this in all these different ways. I often feel something like this, too, but there are men and women, even cismen and ciswomen, with whom I am more comfortable, and I hope you find some, too.


  12. Jessica

    @Sarah, of course, I was just speaking for myself. What I feel in myself, about myself, well, that’s for me – how you feel is how you feel and that will make your beliefs and your choices different from mine. Cool.

    Whatever makes you real is what I want you to be – and it won’t conform to my feelings, thoughts, prejudices….

    It would be totally idiotic to do as I say, not feeling as I do. Everybody should be happy singing their own song, that’s how we get harmony.


  13. kendall

    Seriously, if “passing” is a fauxpas to say because its perceived as trying to be something you’re not… and it should be “presenting” instead–then “real” is definitely the wrong word, bio or cis or whatever, but I know transpeople who I know are trans and I still catch myself being like “I like ninja turtles, when you were a little buhguhIuh..child..what did you like?” that kind of thing, it just seems so natural to me that a man would’ve been a boy, they find this endearing I think when they know I know they’re trans but I still see them as bio sometimes, its not a big difference but seriously “real” even I thought that hit below the belt..pun intended


  14. Anonymous

    @ lulu: “sometimes when I am around women I feel like i am totally exploding our notions of what ‘woman’ can be and when I am around men I feel like if they watched me carefully they would see what being a real man is all about”

    love this.

    i have to say though, that being around people makes me feel something completely different than a man or a woman. i suspect many of us feel similarly about being able to relate to each (maybe even identifying as one or the other on a given day), but not feeling only like one or the other. more than anything, i want all expressions of sex/ sexuality/gender/humanity to be recognised, not just the ones that fall within the binary.


  15. Taylor Trash

    I feel the same, except I feel like a failure as a female and a fraud as a male. Everything feels fake no matter how I present. Sometimes I think I’m just not queer enough to be in the LGBT community.


  16. AJ

    Exactly how I feel too, this really hits home. When I dress masculine, people thing I’m this adorable tomboy. When I dress feminine, it feels like I’m in drag. I’m somewhere in between male and female, and it feels like I’m the only one sometimes. Reading this post and the comments on it makes me feel better. I’m definitely not alone.


  17. Kab

    Ditto that, mate. I think we all go through bits of that from time to time. Public toilets are the worst for that, I find, but it gets easier.


  18. BamBam

    Totally empathize with this.

    This is why I isolate my social network to dogs, gender benders and cookies.


  19. Rosie

    Well said. I often feel that women see my attempts at friendship as manipulative sleaziness. Many of the males in my life are,… well, sleazy. Unfortunate, indeed, although I recognize this as being purely coincidental. Still, when someone makes it clear that they view me as male, I can’t help but feel like they think I’m a scumbag. Maybe experience will provide me with a more enlightened view of masculinity.


    Jessica replied:

    The attitude I have encountered much more often with women is that they disbelieve in trangenderism (especially transsexualism) and think that people who do it are self-obsessed narcissists who are elaborately pretending to be what they are not. “The more I know about trans, the less I believe that it has anything to do with gender.” was a comment made by a friend of mine, which illustrates the point that other peoples’ understanding of trans is different from our understanding of it.


Leave a Reply

Can I show your picture? If you have a Gravatar associated with this email address, it will be displayed as your photo. If not, I'll just put a picture of a fork next to your comment. Everybody likes forks.

Be nice. Judgmental comments will be quietly deleted and blacklisted. There's plenty of room for those elsewhere on the web.

For legal reasons, you must be age 13 or older to post a comment on Genderfork.

You can use some HTML tags for formatting, e.g. <em>...</em> for emphasis (italics) or <strong>...</strong> for strong emphasis (bold) or <a href="http://(url)">...</a> for links.

Back to top