Does one really characterise what we M-F transsexual made as a ‘choice’?
If a woman could ‘choose’ to live as a man, then there would be quite a rush on the F-M transgender clinic; M-F would cease. We M-F are not wired with a male identity to live in this man’s world.
As is the female identity:
- One heterosexual female friend told me she attempted such a feat many years ago – present as a male to learn what it is to be male. She said she was unsuccessful because her identity is female. She said that while she was able to look masculine she could not present herself as a man.
- I have an on-again / off-again e-mail pen-pal relationship with a woman who recently told me she dressed as a man and then in a man’s costume for Hallowe’en last year. She said her disguise was good; other men thought she (‘he’) was a different man in a man’s costume. But she described how she hated trying to portray that male performance for the Hallowe’en party and was so relieved when she got home and took off her double man’s costume. That’s the hold of identity.
This male-dominated world is paternalistic and misogynistic.
There is no practical reason to ‘choose’ life as female facing these odds – if it was as simple as ‘choosing’.
Why would women ‘choose’ to encounter discrimination at every point in American life?
- Employers pay women at 60 cents-on-the-Dollar compared to male colleagues (even when women have far more education and / or experience).
- Men treat women as if we have no education (ignoring our college degree and / or post-grad professional school) or work experience.
- Prospective employers refer women to apply for their clerical pool regardless of our education and work experience; they accept men to apply for management positions.
- Strange men poke and pinch women on public transportation; they make wolf-calls and obscene gestures.
- Men at the auto shop treat women as if we know nothing about cars (though it is not unusual for many M-F to have had auto shop class at high school or worked on cars as a teen during our ‘before’ life).
- Men deride women when we present learned information to them because that is what men teach each other to do.
Notice the Moslem / Arab world? Those male societies consider females their chattel to be bought, sold, raped, bound, enslaved, denied an education, abused from birth to death, and subjected to ‘honour killings’ when the men offend each other. No wimpy Moslem male could endure life as a woman for the slightest moment; my absolute respect to all women who endure knowing nothing else.
Allow my own comparison how ‘professional’ people treat others at work – male versus female. I went from being a respected male to a disregarded female following my Transition. It was that old adage of losing 100 points off the IQ scale for changing from male to female.
- a) I was employed (as a male during my Transition to female) at a large-sized federal agency’s office (1980s). I have a college education in business administration, including coursework in personnel management, accounting, and finance. I accumulated a reasonable number of years personnel management experience when I was appointed to my position as ‘Assistant Personnel Officer’. My office took me as the personnel and payroll ‘expert’. My agency managers and co-workers sought my advice for their tasks and questions. I was well-respected for my ideas as others sought my input. I keenfully observed how higher-grade women managers acceded to me as a ‘male’ though their prospective contributions exceeded mine. I was the only male who gave respect and deference to higher-grade and more-experienced female managers; I was the sole ‘male’ who invited and encouraged women participation at my federal office. Terry, my lower-grade female co-worker, was amazed that I treated her as an equal and gave serious consideration to her when I sought her ideas for work activities The other males treated women like dirt; it seemed the women hardly perceived it or said nothing because they reallised it was pointless.
- b) I was last employed (as a female) at a major agency in state government in a mid-sized state (2000s); my position title was ‘Fiscal Services Specialist’. I had my college education and then some – now including post-graduate courses. I brought more than 20 years of additional specialised experience to my position. I performed an exclusive assignment for state government – I was singularly responsible for accounting the budget of billions of Dollars for state property and business insurance and created and maintained all applicable databases and spreadsheets. The men at my state employment treated me little better than a low-level clerk. My immediate managers stole my work as theirs and demanded that I brief them in advance so that they could present my reports solely as their own; they rarely allowed me the opportunity to speak at meetings. I was the one who was obligated to take time from my tasks to prepare and bring refreshments to all the meetings, serve them, and clean up their mess when our meetings concluded. Men universally went over my head. It was common for them to fumble through their tasks, pass the blame to me for problems they created, then leave it to me to take time from my tasks to clean up their business mess. Only female co-workers accepted my guidance to train or teach them; no male came to me for instruction, not even lower-grade male employees.
Yep, women are expected to ‘know their place’ in this supposedly equal society when it comes to ‘male privilege’ – in these instances, whether employed at federal or state government.
I worked with two women-led civics groups during the 1980s (presenting as a male during my Transition to female); those groups were working to pass the ERA. Yes, sadly, many of the women in the more well-known international feminist group fell into that category of lack of awareness of ‘male privilege’ despite absorbed by efforts to change the system that perpetuates it.
I challenge every male to ‘walk a mile’ in a woman’s shoes (figuratively and literally) and come from that experience un-changed.
‘Oblivious to Privilege’
Alternet: ’10 Words Every Girl Should Learn’
And still, at least during the early years of my transition (1970s, 1980s), Society impressed upon me as female the importance of knowing when to shut up when a man told me to shut up. Sometimes, even nowadays, I acquiesce when a chauvinist tries that on me, sometimes I fight back. No female should be forced into that decision; no male has a right to impose that obligation upon a female.
I confirmed a curious matter of the differences in generations of feminist awareness in the M-F.
My female-hood is feminist 1960s / 1970s. A M-F spirit friend of an age similar as mine came to complete her transition to her female-hood now in 2015; she is a feminist of 2010s. I clearly do recognise that today’s 2010s female feminist mindset is far more advanced than my 1970s female feminist due to her 30 and 40 years later change. I am happy for you, not jealous or angry or frustrated. You demonstrate that my generation’s work 20, 30, and 40 years ago bore fruit. You are as much the fruit of our labours in feminist equality as we are the fruit of your labours allowing us to become public and allowing us to cast off our anonymity and fear. Do you comprehend this?
We are of the same age but of two separate generations and we have all come to a great meeting of the minds.
Let me describe one telephone conversation between my mom and me (1978). I was telling her about my college accounting class. She told me that I was wasting my time – that no business was ever going to hire a female accountant.
My mom spoke from the perspective of futility of her generation of women who came to adulthood during the 1950s – 1960s.
My mom was correct for her time and even for some during the 1970s and 1980s. She was denied employment as an accountant; she was continually being shoved into lowly clerical / bookkeeping work despite her better qualifications.
I’ve told many people that, in all honesty, I could have stayed ‘male’ if I could have survived living as ‘male. I can’t do that, even now – with no need and no necessity for connection to any employment sphere or tie to the economy. I collect a monthly SSA check as income and pay my utility bills as outgo all through direct deposit. That has been the bulk of my life since my employer fired me on their charge that my being Transsexual renders me ‘mentally unfit’ to be a State employee (August 2008). I could live the rest of my life in total isolation – in an environment in which my sex and gender would be irrelevant, and I still could not live as ‘male’, I still can’t present as ‘male’.
Can you comprehend this? There is nothing holding me to any or either sex or whatever in-between or beyond. Yet I can’t leave my female-hood behind. That is the strength of one’s identity.
No pity party for me. I have been attending classes at the Phoenix Public Library in an effort to develop several ideas into non-profit businesses. I have been getting busy again and it feels good. These are more reasons how and why I evolved to take my self public: ‘You don’t like me? Make something of it!’ is sort of blossoming my attitude – maybe a little streak of 2010s feminist..
No matter 40 years ago or today, it remains a ‘man’s world’. Even women who have risen to the top of the heap include many who are little more than stooges for the patriarchy. It’s not entirely them to blame. They came of their age in the 1950s – 1960s – 1970s.; they were indoctrinated by that male patriarchy.
Hillary Clinton is barely the lesser of two evils in a Democratic versus Republican election. At least that is not my concern. I am a Green – been a Green since 1982 – voted Green since 1982. I can vote Green because my vote will count Green. Republicans are the automatic vote here at Arizona. That Democratic-versus-Republican binary is not imposed against me where I reside.
John C. Scott Ulm, one of Arizona’s most famous (nay, infamous) Republican right-wing conservative radio talk show hosts, boasted last election day 2014 that ‘Republicans are so stupid they’ll vote for anything with an ‘R’ after the name, including Daffy Duck.’. Yeh, he said that – the b*lls! He is so accurate – you Republi-cons vote exactly as he derided you, you stoopid pawns.
Arizona’s Republican Party leader boasted during the 2010 campaign:
- ‘Republicans are now the tyranny of the majority!’.
(Refer to my ‘Republicans – Part 2’ for more quotes.)
I sit and wonder where is the common sense among the people here – they do not listen and do not pay attention, they vote by habit for Republicans who insult them. And they lay blame on others when things go wrong.