i feel this person
Some real talk about hrt in this video.
There’s always a lot of pressure from cis folks, and from other trans folks, to tell our stories in ways that garner legitimacy from cis culture. And that often means keeping our doubts, our pain, and our struggles around identity and transition tightly locked away. And I think the video clip they show is a really powerful example of what that pain can look like.
I know there are trans folks who would argue that we should keep the nuances of our experiences “under wraps” because to not do so will somehow “harm the reputation of our community” and “make people not take us seriously” and “make it impossible to get equal rights!” but honestly I call bullshit.
All that keeping ourselves “under wraps” does is isolate us further from each other, instill shame in ourselves, show a 2-dimensional and “universal” narrative to the world about our vastly varying experiences, and make “equality” (in the most neo-liberal sense) possible only for the most privileged (white, gender-normative*, class-privileged, straight, men, citizens, etc.) trans folks out there. And we all know that kind of “equality” doesn’t fucking trickle down.
And on a slightly different note, I just wanted to add a little something to the video.
At one point they say “If you’re unsure about taking testosterone, don’t take it.” In the first place I agree, and support the message. Trans folks should never feel pressure to change our bodies in order to demonstrate our genders or our “transness”. Nor should we be considered any less of our genders if we choose not to go through HRT, or we are unable to access HRT. And we should listen to our own feelings of unsureness. I think that’s really really fucking important.
And also, I think it’s important to open up space for people who feel unsure about hrt, and still move forward with it. Because that is also totally legitimate, whatever reasons might be driving you.
It’s totally legitimate to start HRT as a means of surviving in cis culture. Those pressures are real and you have every right to handle them however you see fit.
It’s totally legitimate to start HRT while feeling complicated or conflicted about it.
It’s totally legitimate to start and stop, or to only want certain changes.
It’s totally legitimate to regret starting HRT.
We’re people. We’re fucking complicated and we all have very different experiences and none of us are any less of our genders because of that. We are the experts of our own lives and we don’t need other folks telling us how to interact with our bodies or how to tell our stories.
*gender-normative as in masculine trans men and feminine trans women. better words?
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