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MJputergurl 60F  
57 posts
7/7/2012 10:32 am

The following is a note I recently sent in reply to somebody who sent me a message that said "Your pictures would fool me if I didn't know". I have expounded here a bit from the text of the original note, for the sake of clarity.

Popular media has bred a hurtful misconception about transwomen, in that we are often portrayed as "deceivers" who are purposely trying to "fool" people into thinking we are something we are not.
Unfortunately, it's something non-transgender people ("cisgender" is the correct term for a non-transgender person) have picked up on and seem to feel is the truth, and without knowing any better they assume that is the motivation of every nice looking transperson.

One of the biggest reasons this is hurtful is because behind it's assumptions, it subtly insinuates (even if you didn't mean to) that a transwoman (or transman) is somehow not a "real" woman (or "real" man, in the case of a transman). Whether or not you believe we are "real" is besides the point; if there really were no question in somebody's mind that we are who we present ourselves as, they wouldn't have any need to say something like this.

It never seems to occur to cisgender people that besides simply wanting to look nice just as most people do, a transgender person's real motivation is more commonly to simply not be picked out as a freak so we don't get robbed, beaten, shot, or worse. Whether we have "fooled" anybody is usually the last thought on our mind (if at all), and in most cases (mine included), we don't think we are really "fooling" anybody.

I'm not usually offended or hurt myself by this kind of comment, because I know you likely didn't mean any harm by it and maybe you thought you were paying me a compliment. But if I didn't tell you, you wouldn't know and you'd continue to perpetuate the idea.

To help you avoid something like this in the future, the simple test for any comment you might make to a transwoman is to ask yourself if the comment is something you would say to any woman you knew was NOT transgender. If the comment wouldn't make sense being said to any other woman, it's probably hurtful or ignorant to say to a transgender woman; even if you mean it as a compliment.

Thanks for listening


"Know masculinity, maintain femininity, and be a ravine for all under heaven." - Lao Tzu

Torrid7 73T
497 posts
9/3/2013 1:29 am

We as a society see what is on the out side rarely looking to see whats inside a person. They look upon a person and say what, your not happy with how you are made? This thinking also goes along with "hay she's hot! " "he's the bomb" That statement and their come from is all based on out side thinking. We see first with our eyes then with our hart if we allow our selves to. It completely escapes them for the most part that there could be something going on on the inside. From my limited experience most trans persons (and I am still confused about the terminology. It's land mine rules; You don't know you have broken one until you step on it.) are doing their best to allow that inner lady to be and to exist not only on the inside but on the outside as well. To live in a "to thy own self be true" manor. Most hate comes from fear. Mostly from fear of the unknown or fear of loosing control, even if thats only an illusion. You know the drill if you create the illusion that your foe is less than human it is easy to not feel any emotion about their existence. Society is slow to embrace and a part of it will never do so no mater what. The trouble with being honest is that most of the time we are not honest with our selves much less with the people we meet. And some walk in their sleep as they go through life. Every person I come in contact with I ask my self; Am I being honest with them and my self and am I treating them as I would want to be treated. That is basic fundamental dignity for all. It is in short supply. Hopefully it will get better and society will at the least tolerate if not embrace people for what they are on the inside as well as the out side and allow them to live as they please. To rejoice in their humanness and that spark of life that is to us all.

MJputergurl replies on 9/4/2013 2:01 pm:
Thank you Torrid, nicely put! - MJ

wetslikfun 64M/58F  
11 posts
8/8/2012 10:15 pm

i couldnt tell and now that i know i would still be attracted to you i have a friend whois now a lady and i cant help it shes beautiful

MJputergurl 60F  
88 posts
7/16/2012 10:58 am


Ignorance of the fact genitalia does not define who people are, added to the irrational fear that being attracted to a transperson means a person's sexuality is threatened, equates to hate. For many people, transpeople embody every element they need to hate us.

Being aware that media is often a primary avenue for spreading or perpetuating ignorant ideas is of tremendous importance. That popular media does so at the expense of any segment of people, for nothing more than entertainment or shock value, should be abhorrent to anybody.


"Know masculinity, maintain femininity, and be a ravine for all under heaven." - Lao Tzu

MJputergurl 60F  
88 posts
7/11/2012 8:59 am

Thank you Dee!

Fear + ignorance = hate.

Every time we help enlighten those who otherwise would never have had a reason to question this, we erase a little ignorance, and lessen a little fear. I think doing so in as direct but unthreatening a way possible is the way forward.
There will always be those who refuse to accept, but that's always based in fear; we cannot force anyone to face those fears if they aren't willing to do so. It's those who are seeking enlightenment we can help, and even just one is worth trying for

"Know masculinity, maintain femininity, and be a ravine for all under heaven." - Lao Tzu

MJputergurl 60F  
88 posts
7/7/2012 2:52 pm

Until a cisgender person is ready to accept the fact that genitalia (or biological sex) does not define gender, then the question for them is moot and no further understanding can occur. The typical high school biology explanation of "normal" fetal and sexual development is limited and results in a "black or white" prejudice that ignores the very real variety in all of us.

"Know masculinity, maintain femininity, and be a ravine for all under heaven." - Lao Tzu

MJputergurl 60F  
88 posts
7/7/2012 2:42 pm

The idea that transpeople must divulge their "status" to others is a false assumption in itself, which places "blame" on transpeople for simply being themself. It is often based on the false assumption that transgender people have "chosen" their status, and therefore must bear responsibility for it.
This is a sign of persons who view transpeople as "other" and whom are still operating under the same misconceptions the original post is trying to help reveal.

People who exclusively inhabit the cisgender world often view transpeople as an "other" that is at fault for causing feelings of attraction in them that are at odds with the cisgender person's own understanding of gender and sexuality. The cisgender person's understanding is so entrenched as a "norm", that the cisgender person cannot see the ignorance and misconceptions that cause their prejudice. Just as many people cannot see their own racial prejudice because they have not been taught or refuse to accept a wider understanding of innate qualities people can possess that refute a more narrow and limited understanding.

"Know masculinity, maintain femininity, and be a ravine for all under heaven." - Lao Tzu

_infinity_ 112F
5688 posts
7/7/2012 11:59 am

I think, without being in front of the person to whom I'm speaking to is difficult at best to read them. Being as each one of us is a unique individual we have different perspectives. This is more prevalent in our feelings I've found. Its not a nice feeling being judged and perhaps only, the commenter was relying on their own knowledge. Its good that you want to teach people by giving them more things to think about and doing so they grow in their mindset. Hopefully.

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