Although I've spoken to my mother and told her that I was questioning things, I think she's more or less under the impression that I'm using crossdreaming and transition as a means of avoiding coming out as gay or bisexual. And while I don't deny having some internalized phobias, I find it hard to believe that a closeted gay or bisexual person would question gender identity to the degree that I have.
Given everything I have heard from MTF crossdreamers during the last ten years or so, I think I can safely say that I believe you are right and your mother is mistaken about this. Sexuality is clearly an integrated part of being a crossdreamer, but the crossdreaming is unlikely to end if you come out as gay or bisexual.
I am with April here. Definitely.
And there lies the contradiction! In my sexual fantasies where I'm female, I take pleasure in the ideology that I'm being objectified by the male that I'm with.
There is a tendency in the transgender debate to use such fantasies to invalidate our identities (whether we are indentifying as our target sex, something in between or our assigned gender). It is taken as proof of us being sexual perverts. It is not.
I actually spent some time going through the litterature on non-transgender women's fantasies and found that they share most of the same fantasies as MTF crossdreamers do, the main exeption being (obviously enough) the transformation fantasy, which they do not need. You will find some of this litterature in our library.
To give one example: As many as 50 percent of women report having had rape fantasies. This does not mean that they are perverts or that they want to be raped in real life. It simply means that in their case a submissive side to their sexuality is responding to their particular life situation and is being colored by the sexual stereotypes of their time. You will, for instance, find more of these fantasies among women who are raised in an oppressive sexual environment and who feel shame about being sexually proactive. These fantasies relieve them of their guilt.
I also found that such fantasies are part of many romance novels and female erotica. And yes, also in lesbian erotica.
I have come to the conclusion that we are to condemn people because of incorrect fantasies, nearly all people will have to be condemned.
But you are also questioning your own views of women, indicating that this could be more than a fantasy, and that women are naturally manipulative and submissive.
The ideal situation that I've been brought up to believe and can't seem to get out of my mind is this concept that women portray themselves as sexual objects for men to claim. In doing so, they advance their status only through the men that they interact with and not based on individual merit.
The fact that you are asking that questions clearly tells me that you think this is wrong. And it is. Not that women cannot use their sexuality to get what they want. So do men, by the way. But most of them succeed in life because of their skills, their intelligence, their ability to love and their courage. Just like men.