A great & beautiful freedom

Feelings of being FtMtF. (About feeling like a boy in a dress here).

The same vlogger expresses joy over genderqueer.

Posted by on March 9th, 2011 at 08:00 am

Category: video 19 comments »

19 Responses to “A great & beautiful freedom”

  1. Stuart

    I also largely experience myself as FtMtF. I’ve wondered to what extent I am misappropriating Transfemininity or Gay/Cismen’s expression. I am often read as Cisfemme, softbutch, or “Hippie” (which is the most common and also the most painful for me.) Sometimes these kinds of Cisgender readings result in skepticism of my Trans identity within Queer communities. That troubles me so deeply.


  2. Stuart

    I thought I’d add, one of the reasons that being read as a “Hippie” is particularly upsetting for me, is not only because this reading is often highly gendered, but also because it can also be Spiritually thematic. I identify strongly as both Trans, and as a Skeptic. Epithets that are common in Hippie culture are often combinations of female-associated identities, with some form of Dogma–“Goddess Mama” for example. When someone uses these words to describe me, it simultaneously wounds two very hard-won parts of me. Does anyone else have an experience like this?


  3. Ian

    I thought I was the only one.

    Love this.


  4. radical/rebel

    wow, I’m watching more of your videos on YouTube, and I’m really blown away, impressed, and touched at how well you articulate issues around gender. thank you for being so brave and having the strength to be yourself so passionately.


  5. Aeryn

    I’m exactly the opposite. I would consider myself MtFtM. I’m glad to hear someone else thinks in this way. It’s confusing but then again isn’t life confusing?


  6. Kim

    I can relate to this, though I keep quiet because I’m worried about appropriating trans guy experiences (actually I worry about the same with trans women, even though that’s how people see me). My feelings about gender and sex are complex and overlaid in such a way it’d be best described as a perpetual sine wave. Listing all letters (including androgyny) in this fashion would be exhausting. As a result, I feel a connection with binary trans people but a wide distance at the same time.


  7. radical/rebel

    I just want to plug the fantastic book, Gender Outlaws: The Next Generation, edited by Kate Bornstein and S. Bear Bergman. If you’re looking to read about non-binary trans and genderqueer people, it’s just fucking awesome. Try to get your local library to purchase a copy of it! You’ll be glad you did.


  8. Jessica

    Why do we all want a label so much? What is it about taxonomy that is so fascinating to us. My taxon has just one person in it: me — homo sapiens genderqueeria jessicanus. I am the still point in a turning world of arbitrary nonsense. I feel exhausted by the pain of all this nouveau conformity.

    I wish I could dance to match all the moves my heart has.


    Stuart replied:

    “I am the still point in a turning world of arbitrary nonsense.”–You are right. The world *does* revolve around you!


    Sarah Dopp replied:

    Hey now. Let’s stop this thread here. thanks. :)


    Kim replied:

    Labels are useful to some people, to describe basic circumstances to other people in social and potentially romantic/sexual situations (both about the person themselves and in discussions of things like privilege), to define a community, to have a word to gain support for (through various forms of activism), as hateful words reclaimed, and, simply, for a person to know themselves. Given the typical method of categorising others to determine who a person associates with and how they interact (based, typically, on experience and stereotypes), I don’t see how it would be surprising that most people would feel “attached” to labels for themselves also.

    I do feel (and possibly agree, if this was part of what you meant), though, that the whole thing can sometimes look puzzling from the outside. While I do use certain labels for myself (for instance, identifying as disabled as part of an attempt to fight shame from society), others – like those around sex and gender – are meaningless to me, sometimes being difficult to understand (beyond textbook, by experience) as a result.


    Jessica replied:

    Many people find it difficult to distinguish between the construct we have named and the thing itself . As a way to gain a first step toward gaining and understanding of the universe by simply modeling some part of it, the model can be a good thing – again, provided that we do not forget that we’re working with a model and not the universe itself. A model is an aggregate of constructs (labels) and behaviors, actions and actors. With this we can closely approximate some real thing and test whether some things we believe about the real universe are true or false (whether the model works).

    Again, I have no problem with the theoretical examination of deterministic construct models, but I have a problem with being judged not on the basis of reality but upon some person’s (often long dead) model of some part of reality. A model that works well to predict this and that may be misapplied in completely the wrong context (i.e. ME) and I resent that.


    Kim replied:

    How much of it is purely a model, though? I don’t have a strict association (or possibly much of one at all) of gender labels with possible behaviours and expression, but I still dislike gendered words that are applied to me both because of what it means in general (the fuzzy semblance of an objective view of gender, specific, perhaps, to the region I live), what it appears to mean to the other person, and what it means to me. So it goes, for me, beyond how dated such a model may be, since my dislike is universal (that is, within all reference points and examples presented that I have encountered so far).

    I guess I’m interpreting your posts as referencing a lack of belief in any innate gender and/or sex-related behaviours. While I do not seem to have these behaviours (not in a natural way), I’m not convinced they exist as purely construct (though I may be misunderstanding how you are using “construct”, since usually I hear it referring to the artificial, the social creation). However, I also feel that the language most people – even those more read on gender and queer theory than most – are still too limiting to encompass the differences between internally existing and externally created, if such a distinction can be made. Making such discussions often almost impossible to have (though that thought may just be a response to the frustration at people’s repeated inability to separate gender and sex).

    Also – I do not mean to suggest people should have labels forced on them. If given an all or nothing, I’d certainly go with the latter, and I may regardless one day.

  9. K

    I feel the EXACT same way and I never want to say it because I think it sounds like I’m appropriating the experiences of trans women while maintaining almost all the privileges that come with being read as a cis woman. I feel like a Mrs. Potato head, but I can’t take off my breasts and my hips and my feminine facial features. I love dressing up and being feminine, but sometimes I just want to chill in my own skin, and take everything off. But my bra holds up real breasts and my panties cradle a real vulva. Sometimes I feel like in order to truly be myself and have the body I want, I need to have no body at all.


    Jessica replied:

    Yes, exactly.


  10. Mirima

    I totally respect that you feel like a boy who wants to be a girl. That actually makes perfect sense to me. I’ve met people who feel like a girl inside, or feel like a boy inside, and I know sometimes I feel like a boy inside, but I’ve never come across anyone who felt like a boy who felt like a girl, and that concept makes sense. I think you should thrive from that.


  11. Jess

    ……..trans women aren’t “boys in dresses”, they are WOMEN. They aren’t boys or men who want to be women, THEY ARE WOMEN because they identify as such. I can’t even.


    Anonymous replied:

    pretty much. i’m really dismayed by the fact this was posted. i know we’re supposed to be free to explore our genders, but this just comes from a really flawed, misgendering perspective of trans women. i’m kind of grossed out.


  12. RiverT

    This really seems wrong, at least in terms of labeling… As a more-or-less binary trans guy, i might not really understand the feeling of being bigender (or whatever this specific flavor of genderqueer is). i can understand that someone might see themself as a mix/combination of girl/boy, but the term “trans woman” used here really seems out of place.
    it seems like the original poster is equating “trans woman” with “man who wants to be a woman”, or “not ‘real’ woman”, or “genderqueer-ish woman”, which is incredibly offensive for obvious reasons. (although some trans women might be a bit genderqueer too (in their identity), most are simply women, so let’s not conflate the two.) it’s like saying women who were assigned male at birth are a completely different kind of woman, who aren’t as “real” somehow (when the only differences are gender dysphoria and the transitionning experience). and this person, who was assigned female at birth, is appropriating that word because she doesn’t understand it correctly. (i assume the OP uses “she/her” pronouns, please correct me if i’m wrong.)
    i would understand if a person gendered female at birth (GFAB) transitionning to male and back again identified as “ftmtF” or “trans woman” (because of the trans history and experience). but here it just seems appropriative, ignorant and transmisogynistic.
    let’s not forget that people who (mostly) agree with their gender assignment (which i would call “cis” or a mix of cis/genderqueer) are privileged over those who don’t (trans, trans*/genderqueer and some intersex people). and GFAB trans* people also have a lot of privilege over GMAB trans* people, mostly because of the intersection of misogyny and transphobia/cissexism trans women face.
    anyway, i don’t want to invalidate someone’s experience about their gender, as the OP might really feel like “a guy who wants to be a girl”. i just think the words “ftmtF” and “trans woman” can’t be used in that context because that automatically denies women of trans experience their womanhood.


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