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Yeah, This Isn’t a Hobby

A recent event, of which I’m not going to go into too much detail here, led me to understand that to some of the willfully ignorant, my transition is something of a hobby. Really, it’s true! For some reason it never occurred to me that someone would think that, so I was very surprised when verbally accosted when least expecting it. It didn’t help that the venue was such that responding with any real oomph would have escalated the melee and ruined everyone’s good time instead of just mine. I know, I know I can sense the outrage from a distance, but I ask you trust me that I did the right thing for the situation. Really, you had to be there.

Yes, I used ‘willfully ignorant’ on purpose because this person has known about my transition for a solid year now and apparently hasn’t even bothered to take the 5 minutes to look it up on Wikipedia to gain a rudimentary understanding. It’s fine if people simply don’t want to know, but another to speak to it as if in possession of anything other than silly prejudice. In case you can’t tell, I’m still just a tiny bit riled. No worries, I will not be caught unaware again.

I have to wonder, however, how prevalent the opinion is out there that transition is some sort of hobby or whimsical pastime? It makes sense I suppose to those who have a very murky understanding of the difference between transsexuals and cross-dressers. If one is aware though that we are undergoing a second puberty, growing breasts, being shot in the face with lasers, and planning to undergo some major remodeling in our genital area, one would think common sense would prevail at least to some point. “Wait, could Michael (gotta love it when people refuse to call you by the right name as if it will change anything) possibly be doing all this for reasons other than giving me a hard time?” Sadly, this rarely occurs.

Clearly the bloody discomfort of all of this is nothing more than an attempt to get her goat. “Remember that time you insisted I make you coffee even though I was ass deep in a muddy project out back? Zing! Gotcha!” For some if it’s not about them, it can’t possibly be about anything. I believe the condition is called ‘low differentiation’ wherein if it is not true to their own experience, it can’t possibly be true to yours. “I’m not horribly uncomfortable with my gender, so I can’t fathom why you would be. Why must you punish me by pretending the world might be different than I think by your presence? Can’t you understand it is far more unpleasant for me to have to see you than you feel being stared at like a freak?” Yeah, that was pretty much the take away from that conversation.

I would like to imagine that any ill feelings were born from a sense of outrage regarding the consequences to a well loved family member who is affected the most by this. Feeling mad on someone’s behalf is a very human thing and can be very empathetic and beautiful. If, however, the aggrieved party is no longer upset, any righteous indignation a supporter feels is then about them, not the original aggrieved person. Make no mistake about it. If they let it go, and you feel the need to get upset on their behalf, that’s all about you. It’s perfectly fine to have negative feelings on your own, but attempting to mask them by saying there is no problem but for this other person is pure bullshit.

OK, this sure was one of my rantier posts, but needed to vent a little bit. Please don’t trouble yourself by feeling pissed on my behalf, I’m over it now and came though just fine and better armed for the future. As a college friend used to say, I’m not bitter, just vindictive.


About michellelianna

I'm a transgender woman now in the maintenance stages of transition having all the electrolysis and surgery one can reasonably be expected to undertake. While busy exploring my new world, I took to blogging about it with dubiously popular results. I don't have quite as much to say as I used to, but I'm not quite done yet either.

15 responses »

  1. Blessed are the willfully ignorant, for they shall be our comic relief.

  2. Don’t let the jerks get you down-don’t be bothered by the little things. (It’s a lot easier to say). Remember, when Galileo said that the sun was the center of the universe, they threw him in jail.

    • Thanks Sandy! I don’t really let it get to me. When I started this transition I did so with full understanding that I could lose anything and everything as a result. Coming out the other side of something like that changes a person. I think I’ve become quite fearless as a result and hopefully will be offered a sweet Green Lantern ring as compensation.

  3. I don’t get mad, I just get even!

  4. You know the other day I saw a bumper sticker that I felt is very apropirate in life. It said “We have enough religion to hate, but not enough to love.” I am not saying this attack was religiously motivated, however, some jerks, who shall remain nameless, will probably use that as a defense at some point. You have come a long way, and are a beautiful person inside and out. Maybe she is just jealous. Don’t let people get the best of you. That’s why they say opinions are like assholes everyone’s got one, ( :

    • Thanks Annie! Hey, when I got you on my side, I really know I have nothing to worry about. Really though, never worry; no one inclined to attack me has the power to hurt my feelings. 🙂 Love ya!

  5. I like your blog, I think it’s well written.

  6. Nothing wrong with ranting especially to a qualified audience 🙂 Almost as good as therapy and much less expensive!

  7. I had a CD that lives very close to me say that its just a hobby! I guess thats true when your Zot most of the week and than on the weekend your suzie. I’m probably just the most unlucky girl on the planet but the private get togethers I been to I always seem to run in to the most damaged people I have ever meet. I know some if not all that read this is thinking I’m not very positive myself, but I am just want to fine girls that are fine with themselves and I’m sure this wouldn’t be so. What blows me away is these people are also considered Trans, so much for support. Stupidity isn’t just in society at large it’s right in our own community. Clicks are everywere and in our community as well. I don’t feel the need to practice acting as a female, I am. I have been in front of alot of people that didn’t have a clue and and they would ask. who is that lady. People that know me would think it’s funny and say, That’s ted. The hard part is that at times someone who knows you will let the cat out of the bag. I’m not trying to brag I don’t need to, I have just discovered that if someone dose not know you than your a woman to them and it takes time to get there, three years in my case. As you know this is diffently not a past time. HRT can be dangerous if not taken seriously. Most of the nasty comments I have incountered have been from other trans girls. I’m in one of my moods, I just wish people could get past them selves and make it easy on the rest of us and just be nice. I hate the memories that some people have given me and for me I have to good of a memory. Sorry just how I feel about that.

  8. Though you were still upset enough to need to rant, I think by the end of the post, you had put it into the proper perspective.
    I too have relatives who refuse to take ownership for their own feelings and always insist on speaking out on the behalf of “other people”. They fool nobody.
    Don’t get too upset at those people. Unfortunately, stupid is as stupid does. No amount of effort on your part will overcome willful ignorance. It’s not worth trying.
    It sounds like you have little enough contact with this person anyway. It’s probably best that way.

    • Thanks Becky! And no worries, I was over it by the time I even posted. My irritation was much more with the chosen venue than the words. I can hold my own, but the threat of collateral damage made it a wee bit gnarley. … BTW, I don’t talk like a valley girl, if they even have those anymore; I just like the word ‘gnarley’.


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