In a Mood
Maybe I’m in a cynical mood tonight.
Maybe I’ve just had a bellyful of the poison people like us have do deal with from toxic people in our lives.
I should be careful not to broad brush of course, I do know transwomen and men who had a relatively smooth transition, supported by friends and loved ones and even with no significant difficulty in work or other social interaction. But it seems so rare. True, good news doesn’t often make news, even in casual conversation, but the negative reactions can be shocking, even to a cynic.
Don’t misunderstand, for some months now I’ve been banging the drum to come out. I’ve said things won’t get better without more visibility and I believe that passionately.
All the same, it’s also true that some around us are so passionately invested in the cultural mythology about trans people that they simply refuse to be moved by any rational argument. One of the reasons it’s been two weeks since my last blog is that I’ve been passionately involved in a few long-running discussions online, mostly resulting from the Leelah Alcorn suicide. In one such discussion, my Traditionalist opponent actually said that teenagers thrown out of the house by their parents for being LGB/T are responsible for their own exile. You get involved in these discussions and it’s staggering what some people actually profess to believe.
It is true that the anonymity of the internet seems to radicalize the rhetoric of some who might be much more placid in face-to-face conversations, but it’s also true that we all (almost all) have first hand experience with people willing to live out that sort of hateful mindset in their own personal relationships, be they spouses or siblings or parents or whatever.
This is not one of those columns in which I offer sage advice, or a plan of action, or even a big picture view. I’ve spent years confronting this sort of situation in my own life and I’m all out of potential solutions to change the heart of the individuals caught in the grip of that mindset. I won’t let such people hold me back or hold me down any longer, I refuse to be held captive to it no matter how it hurts to deal with it. But damned if I know what to do about it.
Photo by: Tobylyn Marjeta