I Know

“What? Why?”, I ask him. The time and place vary, the questions vary, his specific displays of stress, shame and discomfort vary. His answer does not.

He doesn’t know.

He doesn’t know what it is that he wants. He drops his head, refusing to look me in the eyes. Mumbles, “I don’t know.”

He doesn’t know why he wants to be seen as a woman. But this is what he wants. He wants “to be” a woman.

“Why?”, I ask him.

He doesn’t know. He squirms on the other end of the couch, twisting away from me, stares out the plate glass window.

“What do you like about being seen as a woman?”, I ask.

He doesn’t know. He picks at the cuticles of his fingernails.

“What do you dislike about being a man?”, I ask. “I don’t know!”, he snaps, exhaling heavily, rolling his head back, eyes searching the ceiling.

The truth arises as the questions pour from my mouth:

“At what average age are prostituted women first commercially sexually exploited? How many incarcerated women are survivors of incest? What’s the average pay gap between women and men? How many women per week are killed by men? What percentage of college women will be raped? Why are the majority of prostituted people indigenous women and women of color, and why are the majority of their johns white men? What percentage of girls suffer with eating disorders? In developing countries, what percentage of AIDS victims are girls and women? What’s the annual profit of the pornography industry? How many women and girls per hour are raped in South Africa? How many tens of millions of girls are denied educations simply because they are female? What percentage of trafficked humans are prostituted girls and women? How much does the morning after pill cost?”

He doesn’t know.

Gas Mark Six

This is it. This.

naefearty

Here’s something I wrote when I was asked to speak alongside Sheila Jeffreys, who was speaking about her book “Gender Hurts”, about how transgenderism harms women. In the end, I didn’t say all this, but for those of you who are interested, here it is..

 

“For the longest of time I told no-one. It is only in the past few years that I have found the words to describe my experience. Thank you, Sheila Jeffreys, and the Radical Feminist community of bloggers for the gift of words.

 

I used to have an online friend (also a partner of a man who thought he was a woman) who likened the experience of being partnered to a transgender to the frog who is put into the pot of water and the heat gradually turned up till cooked – a deliberate programme of de-sensitisation as each limit is compromised or ignored, and…

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Censored by Trans Activists: Staying in the Same Town as My Ex – by Christine Benvenuto

Does this narcissism and anger sound familiar to you?

GenderTrender

Censorship-

The following essay was posted on the Jewish parenting site Kveller on Dec 3 2012. Within hours, the author’s ex-husband apparently started a campaign on Facebook to bully the author, and the website, into removing her writing. The essay is a holiday time reflection from a woman sharing her thoughts and feelings about remaining in the same small town as her ex-husband and some of the challenges this presents for her. Nothing in the piece is particularly critical of her ex. It is more of a personal reflection of some of her thoughts and experiences.

Nonetheless, within hours, her ex-husband was able to mobilize hundreds of people to complain about the publishing of his ex-wife’s writing.

On what basis?

Her ex-husband is a powerful man. He is a tenured college professor at Yeshiva University, and an author. He has a lot of friends. But more importantly, he is a transgender…

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A Post of Her Own

I made the following comment in response to Choco, regarding Lesbians who unknowingly enter into relationships with transgender birth-males. https://outofmypantiesnow.wordpress.com/2013/06/18/was-it-rape-or-is-it-fraud/#comment-110

“It is hard for me to express the horror that I feel for any lesbian who finds she has been targeted for abuse by a male-birth transgender, at any stage of his transition or presentment.” I chose those particular words in the previous sentence very carefully, in an attempt to acknowledge both my visceral reaction to the Cotton Ceiling agenda and my own confusion over why I should feel so strongly about this.

The Chosen Words:

Me – I have always considered myself to be bisexual. I’ve had relationships which were involved enough to include sex both with women and with men. I like to think that has been a choice on my part, but further introspection indicates it was largely conditioning. My interests, personality and communication styles are all stereotypically masculine of center. That is mostly a function of my upbringing. I tend to have more in common with men, and get along better with men, than I do with most women. I prefer having sex with women’s bodies, though. Hetero-normative is easier, but less satisfying, to me. So I have always oscillated between the two, trying to find the right fit.

Being bisexual is a problem for me. I don’t really fit anywhere – I am either suspicious or suspect. Inevitably, men interpret my dual orientation as being open to a variety of their sexual fantasies. I’m not. In fact, just the thought of their fantasies ends the relationship on my part. Lesbians don’t really trust me, and I don’t blame them. I have no interest in having a relationship with another bisexual woman, either. I tend to view bisexual women with the same expectation of “You want me to do what?!?!”, which I have always experienced with men. So, I guess I don’t trust them myself. Or, perhaps I didn’t trust the young ones, those with no significant same sex relationship experience. It’s been a while since I considered this. Which brings me to my next specifically chosen words.

Hard to Express – Not only do I not fully know what I want to say, but I also worry that I don’t really have a right to say anything. It feels presumptive to admit that I have very strong feelings about this. Especially, immediately following my own statement of historical bisexuality. It feels like appropriation, that I am claiming the pain that someone else is feeling for my own, when clearly, my life path has been different, and, in many ways, easier. It is hard to identify why I feel so strongly. It is harder to find words that don’t feel off limits to me. I do not want to alienate or talk over anyone who has been a victim of male appropriation of lesbian.

Horror – Horror, horrible, horrific. They all fit. As do many other words of fright and fear. I have a visceral, physical reaction to the thought of any woman-centered-woman opening herself up, in a trusting relationship, to an imposter. To someone who has fetishized her, and reduced her to an object, in order to not just possess her, but to displace and replace her. To erase her, and write himself into her place. It is demonic possession. Cannibalistic. Woman, consumed by man.

It is a nightmare come true. If I allow myself to dwell on it, and the underlying misogyny and patriarchal manipulation which created it, I feel violently ill.

I used not to have sex without STD test results. If I ever have sex again, it won’t be without chromosome test results. This saddens me.

Finds – I believe than any woman who is a woman-loving-woman, a lesbian, does not knowingly enter into a relationship with a male. Those that think they do, have become bisexuals or heterosexuals. They are no longer lesbians. His appropriation of lesbian is no less disgusting, but it is known and accepted by those women. They are a woman in a relationship with a man. That’s not a lesbian.

I use the word ‘finds’, to indicate that true sex was previously lied about or omitted. Duplicitous actions, behaviors and words were used to obscure the truth. The advancements in cosmetic surgery have been great. There are still many visual clues to biological sex, but I can understand that a less experienced woman might would find herself unintentionally in a relationship with a post-operative transsexual birth male. Or even emotionally invested in a platonic or pre-sexual relationship.

Targeted – Men have long fetishized lesbians. Their desire to watch two women perform sex for them. Their need to insert themselves into a sexual relationship between women. Their ego at diverting a woman from lesbianism and into heterosexuality. Their fury at being excluded from the life of something, not even a some one, that they have always assumed ownership over. And finally, their envy of our creativity, our ability to create. Men spray seed. Women bring forth life.

Abuse – It is abuse to use another person for your own purposes. It is abuse to mislead and lie to another. Believing lies is very psychologically damaging. You grieve the loss of what you perceived to be the truth. You damage your ability to trust others. You lose faith in yourself. Men who target lesbians do so specifically in order to abuse them.

Male birth – Woman has a very specific personal, political and social identification. It is sex based. Biological. Chromosomal. It is experience based. Phenomenal survival of a highly sophisticated system of dedicated destruction and oppression. It is a curse and an incredible triumph.

Men are not women. Men, no matter how much hormones they take nor how many surgeries they obtain, are not women. They never will be.

Transition is a false illusion. The male inside cannot be so obtuse as not to recognize this. He is not a woman. He will never be a woman. At best, he will look very like a woman. His construction of an artificial shell in which to hide underscores his duplicity. He intends to deceive others. Specifically, he intends to deceive them to his own benefit, for his advantage. His deceit is not done for them, it is an action taken against them.

Conclusion…. Maybe I have put lesbians on a pedestal. Maybe some are strictly attracted to the primary and secondary sex “features”, and don’t really care about the soul of the woman. I don’t feel that I have mis-judged lesbians, though. In my more attractive youth, certainly I felt some women more interested in me than our level of acquaintance and shared interests warranted. But it seemed more of a market availability attraction and less of an objectification. Lesbians comprise a very small percent of the population. In many cases, I felt like I was approached simply because I was interested in relationships with other women, who were also interested in a relationship with another woman. More of a get-to-know-you, less of an I-want-to-do-you.

But in no situations was it ever a deliberate attempt to disguise themselves and target me for abusive satisfaction of their sexualized fetish. It was never an attempt to erase me. To replace me.

It is hard for me to express the horror that I feel for any lesbian who finds she has been targeted for abuse by a male-birth transgender, at any stage of his transition or presentment.

Living with a Transvestite

From a Guest Blogger: Her experience of living with Fetish and Autogynephilic Transvestism. Its not you, its him.

Living with a Transvestite

It is not until now, in middle age, that I am able to express how the experience of living with a transvestite man has affected me.

I was very young when we met. He was a professional musician and was quite a bit older than me. He struck me as very sophisticated and artistic and I believed he was attracted to me.

We began seeing one another seriously and we fairly quickly progressed to a sexual relationship. I fell in love and was blind to the signs that all was not right, which I can see so plainly now. Like the times when a piece of my underwear would somehow be in bed despite me having undressed before getting in to bed. Or like when some of my things began to go missing.

Sex wasn’t brilliant and he began to insist that I wear underwear in bed, especially the girly, frilly stuff. I was puzzled but not overly disturbed. Still, after he had visited me, items of my clothing would be missing.

A few weeks later he invited me to live with him. Before I answered he said he felt there was something I ought to know. He told me that he was ‘interested’ in women’s underwear. Ok, I thought, what hetero man isn’t? I didn’t realise he meant wearing it.

So I moved in with him, still largely unaware of his proclivities and sexual interests. And his violent responses if he didn’t get what he wanted.

I remember that he wanted me to have a different bedroom from him. He said that it was to do with years of living alone and the inability to sleep with anyone near him. I had my own room and found that I was not allowed into his room unless invited. We still had but it was becoming quite infrequent. I felt it odd that so soon in the relationship his sexual interest in me was waning. It was at this time it became clear to me that he was ‘borrowing’ my clothes. Not just underwear but dresses, coats, scarves…anything really. He was taking these things surreptitiously, slyly returning them the exact way he found them. Almost. I began to set little traps in an attempt to prove what he was up to.

I felt unable to confront him over what was, to me, a huge violation. I felt it was somehow a failing in me, that I wasn’t liberal or open-minded enough. I kept trying to be ok about it but it made be very uncomfortable. I began to realise why our sex life had waned, it was because in reality he would rather masturbate that do anything else.

We skirted around the elephant in the room. We travelled abroad on holidays and he would insist on ‘time alone’, which was code for him dressing up in my clothes and masturbating. I once returned to the hotel room earlier than I had planned and he became extremely angry. The angry outbursts became more frequent as I fought to have what I considered a ‘normal’ relationship. In truth, I was afraid of him.

I realised at some point that I had to leave and waited until his job took him to Europe, packed up my stuff, left a note and found a place of my own. But it would take years before the wounds healed. I was young and beautiful then and yet I felt ugly and undesirable. I felt I had failed because I couldn’t be happy with the arrangement. I felt those things for years, always suspicious of any man who seemed interested in my clothes in anyway. I deliberately wore dowdy things and stopped having any interest in my appearance. I hated fashion magazines because to him they were pornography. I hated shopping for clothes because he loved to do that, getting an erection as he looked for items of clothing that were supposedly for me, but which he would wear.

I think women are put under a lot of pressure to accept relationships like this as being evidence of an open mind. Well, this relationship was a wholly negative experience for me. Even without the violence, I would have felt the self loathing and secret shame.

My advice to anyone in a similar situation would be to listen to your instincts and to put yourself first. Any behaviour that results in you feeling bad about yourself is abusive. If you are not comfortable then get out of the relationship because he will never, ever change.

Crossdresser Punches Woman in the Face

Be sure to read the comments, and note how very, very few of them even acknowledge his violence against women. http://www.theguardian.com/world/2013/aug/13/bradley-manning-email-drag-photo-sentencing With all the previously suppressed news and only recently allowed limited news coverage, why has this violence against women not been analyzed? Emulating women doesn’t show flattery and respect, it shows disrespect and misogyny.

Crossdressers hate women.

Their very act of pretending to be women, mocks women. When you admire and care for someone, do you show that by mocking them? Ridicule them by dressing and behaving in gross exaggeration?

Their compulsive sexual obsession with being “their own” sex toy, clearly shows they only value women for their sexuality. Sexuality which has been defined by men in order to appeal to men. Does reducing another person, an entire class of people, down to their sex appeal show respect for them? Does it indicate they see each individual as a whole person, with a multitude of abilities, personality and intelligence? (see also http://www.independent.co.uk/news/world/australasia/vote-for-woman-with-sex-appeal-says-australian-opposition-leader-tony-abbott-8760087.html )

The concept of crossdressing is harmful to women. The objectification and sexualization it perpetuates is harmful to all women. Reducing women to a pile of semen soaked clothing is demeaning. It is sexist. It is discriminatory. It is hateful.

Crossdressers hate women.

“You Never Really Loved Me”

He’s right. I didn’t. I never really loved him.

I loved someone, though, very deeply. I trusted that someone. I loved someone and I loved being loved by someone. I showered someone with my attention and affection. With my charm, warm looks, intelligent conversation and hot sex. But that wasn’t him, it was someone else.

I tried, though. There was a period of 5-8 weeks when I tried so hard to love him. A period where I knew him and I wanted desperately to love him, because I had once loved someone so much and I did not want to lose that.

But that was someone else.

I knew someone else. I loved someone else. I didn’t love him. I didn’t know him.

And once I knew him, I could never love him.