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That narrow meaning of transgender turns me off because...
1) I do not identify as a gender different to that I was born.
2) I live, and have every intention of always living, as a male. This does not bother me because for me it is just a word like 'profesion' or 'city' a linguistic category that has no effect on my tastes, my politics, my emotions etc.
So, in what sense am I gender variant if I'm so loyal to my gender?
I'm gender variant because my sexuality is entirely dominated by identification with females. I literally would not be able to get turned on by thinking of myself as a man in sexual fantasy.
Furthermore, as I've gotten older...my desire to be female has become non-sexual and - at times - overbearingly necessary and compelling (though, I seem to have regained control of this desire.)
As I'm firmly convinced that these two phenomonon stem from biological factors...I think it was 'nature' not 'nurture' that imbued me with these female inclinations and thus I was born male but with a strong dash of intrinsic gender variance.
So, why don't I just 'transition' to live as a woman if being a woman is what I want sexually, emotionally and socially?
After much consideration of the issue, I have come to the firm conclusion that for some (perhaps 'most') gender variant individuals with my profile (middle aged, sexual history of crossdreaming, male indentified for most of life) transition is not the best treatment for gender dysphoria. I believe this because...
1. The desire to be a woman is not satisfied by transition. Transition leads to one becoming a 'trans woman'...which is something different. This difference is not expressed legally or in the minds of good liberals like myself, but in a series of medical, social, financial, romantic, familial costs which - taken together -. slowly chip away at the individual's hapiness and leads to a nagging - or sometimes overt - dissatisfaction with being a transwoman. Transgender crossdreamers want to be women...and transition while making one legally, morally, socially a woman...it is not the type of woman we need and want to be.
To me it's an equation...,
The realisation you are a transwoman and not a woman + the irreversible effects of certain treatments and intereferences with our endocrinal system + emotional, financial, profesional etc consequences ot transition = depression.
I understand that for some people the equation works differently...and if they don't transition then they get deporessed...but this post is about me and that is my personal equation (for the moment...things change!)
2. Being a man who openly accepts and embraces his gender variance and focuses on life, love, friends, careers...leads to a greater long term happiness (that's the plan, anyway...but after a miserable christmas I'm not so sure.)
So where do you think your crossdreamer sexuality and crossdreamer gender come from?
For me..the sexuality is a simple case of programming. Some sexualities are programmed towards copulating with girls...and some to being girls.
The gender simultaneously causes and is caused by the sexuality. The two are inseperable and we should not try to see them in a linear x caused y relationship.
After a couple of years looking at this question I firmly believe that we are not linguistically equipped to answer it satisfactorily. I'm deeply convinced by the Max Morris essay I talked about on my website that the origins of transgender identity (in crossdreamers like myself) have a sexual origin. But you can only hold that view if it comes from an evoloutionary understanding of sexual behaviour and the profound interconnectedness of sexuality and the personality in general.
Once you understansd the interconnectedness of sexual reproduction and the human personality/emotional needs - you see it is impossible to describe certain human behaviours as purely sexual. These include marriage, home building, child rearing and the desire to transition in transwomen. It leads to what I describe as a quantum position where crossdreaming is both sexual and psychological at the same time.
Anyway...that's where I am these days. Not much time to spend on crossdreaming theory. Time to enter politics. If you wanna read more about my massively inconsistent and constantly evolving ideas... visit http://transcendmovement.com/