Sunday, 21 July 2013

Bring On The Convalescence!

With the aid of recent counselling I'd begun to truly feel at ease with myself. I'd begun to recognise that Trans is just another way of being as any other. Then this week I had an uncomfortable awakening from this fallacy.
The trouble with being Trans is that, prior to transition (that of changing from your birth gender to your real gender identity), Trans people have usually built whole lives (e.g. a family, a career, a social network) around their birth gender. A life in which perhaps everyone they have ever met assumes they are of the birth gender they presented their self as.
This is also true of people of a non-heterosexual nature - they are often, prior to "coming out", assumed to be of a sexuality - heterosexuality - at odds with their true sexuality.
Thus, from my perspective, it seems those of a non cisgendered heterosexuality are often in the position of crowbarring their way into the consciousness of everyone that matters in their life (i.e. their family/career/social peers) and so the notion that we are people just the same as any other is a fallacy. 
Yes, in theory, we are the same: homosexuality is a sexuality the same as heterosexuality, bisexuality and a multitude of others are - the same as transgender is a gender identity the same as cisgender, pangender and any other - but it so does not work out that way in reality.
Far too often those of a non cisgendered heterosexuality grow up feeling at odds to the far more common cisgendered heterosexuals of this world. Far too often we grow up feeling that we are less than their equal. Far too often we feel like we have to apologise for our existence or to get permission to exist publicly within their lives. Far too often we receive abuse - physical and/or verbal - for being different to the cisgendered heterosexual. None of which helps us realise the true variety of sexual and gender identities.
My uncomfortable reminder of this reality arrived this week (and many weeks prior) when non cisgendered heterosexuals in the UK found their right to form relationships of their choosing being argued and voted on by our two houses of parliament.
In my opinion, every person's right to form relationships of their choosing should be down to no one other than the individuals concerned. How is arguing for permission to do so meant to make any of us feel equal? Especially when, as it was, it arrives in a limited form and continues to compound the inequality by having different rules for different people!
No, this does nothing to make me feel the peer of a cisgendered heterosexual. Instead it serves to remind me that I live in a dictatorship in which their identity is portrayed to be of more worth and validity than mine.
This was compounded yesterday when I sat through a presentation on a "road-map" to transitioning from birth gender to true gender identity.
Every minute of that presentation served to remind me that I need permission from my family/career/social peers for a successful transition. I need them to be in accordance with my transition or risk it being negatively affected. 
Again, this does nothing to remind me of the truth of the variety of gender identities. And, again, the problem stems from the dictatorship in which we live. 
It seems to me that I live in a society where it is a fallacy that a non cisgendered heterosexual identity is the same as any other but it is also the truth: a non cisgendered heterosexual identity is but one combination of the multitude of possibilities and thus the same as any other!
So, if the reality is different from the truth, which of us are sane exactly? Is it the people who permeate the reality or the people who permeate the truth? Or perhaps the people who permeate the fact that reality has separated itself from truth? 
Whichever it is, sanity does not automatically equal a mind at ease. 
It is painful to acknowledge that people have views opposite to ours; views that, in their own way, are equal to our own. It is painful to have to justify our worth and validity. It is painful to be aware that our lives hang in the balance of the mind of our foes.
As a result, my life is a painful existence and those who fit the cisgendered heterosexual identity will never truly appreciate that and, to be honest, I am glad for them that is the case.
However, I would be happier if more of them made the effort to appreciate how painful a life those who do not fit the cisgendered heterosexual identity are made to suffer. Perhaps then we can move away from the dictatorship we live in and move towards a democracy in which everyone is on a level playing field; in which everyone has a say that is equal to everyone else; in which no one is made to feel compelled to hide their true identity (we are not superheroes (even if we do have superhuman abilities!)).
Perhaps the vote on same-sex marriage is evidence we are moving towards that world? Perhaps enabling ourselves to transition from birth gender to true gender identity is evidence that we are moving towards that world? But I would so much have preferred it if it had never been necessary in the first place.
I would so much have preferred it if reality had never torn itself apart from truth. The process has brought nothing but pain and, even whilst we seek to reunite the two, that pain continues. 
I so want an end to that pain and I so long for the days of blissful convalescence.