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Aug 7 16 11:14 PM

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Natalie Reed takes an interesting new approach to the question "Am I trans?", by turning it upside down over at Freethought Blogs.

Here are a few paragraphs:
Cis is treated as the null hypothesis. It doesn’t require any evidence. It’s just the assumed given. All suspects are presumed cisgender until proven guilty of transsexuality in a court of painful self-exploration. But this isn’ta viable, logical, “skeptical” way to approach the situation. In fact it’s not a case of a hypothesis being weighed against a null hypothesis (like “there’s a flying teapot orbiting the Earth” vs. “there is no flying teapot orbiting the Earth”), it is simply two competing hypotheses. Two hypotheses that should be held to equal standards and their likelihood weighed against one another.When the question is reframed as such, suddenly those self-denials, those ridiculous, painful, self-destructive demands we place on ourselves to come up with “proof” of being trans suddenly start looking a whole lot less valid and rational. When we replace the question “Am I sure I’m trans?” with the question “Based on the evidence that is available, and what my thoughts, behaviours, past and feelings suggest, what is more likely: that I’m trans or that I’m cis?” what was once an impossible, unresolvable question is replaced by one that’s answer is painfully obvious.

Cis people may wonder about being the opposite sex, but they don’t obsessively dream of it. Cis people don’t constantly go over the question of transition, again and again, throughout their lives. Cis people don’t find themselves in this kind of crisis. Cis people don’t secretly spend every birthday wish on wanting to wake up magically transformed into the “opposite” sex, nor do they spend years developing increasingly precise variations of how they’d like this wish to be fulfilled. Cis people don’t spend all-nighters on the internet secretly researching transition, and secretly looking at who transitioned at what age, how much money they had, how much their features resemble their own, and try to figure out what their own results would be. Cis people don’t get enormously excited when really really terrible movies that just happen to include gender-bending themes, like “Switch” or “Dr. Jekyl And Mrs. Hyde”, randomly pop up on late night TV, and stay up just to watch them. Etc.
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#2 [url]

Aug 8 16 5:12 AM

I enjoyed this article out of a lot I have read over the last year and puts things into perspective. When I am having doubts and thinking I should man-up etc, it's now nice to think myself am I cis and answer back oh god I never was and never will be and should stop trying. I am trans.

Thanks Jack

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#4 [url]

Aug 9 16 3:20 AM

interesting perspective, sharp thinking. i also like fyonab's comment.

i think 'if you feel the feelings a lot then by definition you are trans' is a good take. like not 'you are essentially female', 'you need to transition', just 'you are one of the people who manifest the symptoms, so you are one of the people'. whatever theories about trans people might be true (even Blanchard's), you are one of them.

it's true our thinking is likely to be weighed against trans identification. this is not just cultural pressure, it's also common sense - the external evidence is that we (mtfs) are male.

i think though that people who are seriously into advocating trans might go too far in the opposite direction by dismissing any doubt as 'denial'.

but where is the line between 'one of us' and 'not one of us', or is that a wrong perspective? i would think there are many people who are are somewhat titillated, but far from obsessed. if there's a spectrum, what amount of transness qualifies as 'being trans'? xx

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#5 [url]

Aug 11 16 9:05 PM

“Based on the evidence that is available, and what my thoughts, behaviours, past and feelings suggest, what is more likely: that I’m trans or that I’m cis?” what was once an impossible, unresolvable question is replaced by one that’s answer is painfully obvious.

This is also painfully true. I denied it for so many years, but what cis person fantasizes about being the opposite sex, enjoys cross-dressing, and constantly questions their gender identity? Now all I can think is, "How did it take me so long to see the obvious?"

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#6 [url]

Aug 11 16 11:16 PM

"How did it take me so long to see the obvious?"


Most likely because everything  and everyone around us do their best to stop us from seeing the obvious, and they do so through the implicit threat of withdrawing their love and respect. The fear of social exclusion is a extremely strong emotional force.

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