#transchat 2/3: Engaging with Our Histories

Two comments came up among my circle this week that made me think it’s time for a candid conversation among trans folks about a topic that’s not easy to sum up, and is sometimes difficult to discuss, but is vitally important. The topic is, more-or-less, engaging with our feminine or masculine histories—not to say that we ever were in fact women or men, but sometimes we do need to engage with how we were perceived when we were younger and what impact that perception, in the context of a patriarchal gender-policing society, has on us as adults.
In most cases we try to bridge gender with #transchat topics, and this one will be a bit different. Folks who were perceived to be boys are likely going to have different things to discuss from those perceived to be girls. But with all the hoopla lately about gender, trans identity, and feminism, I hope that we can sit down on Sunday and have an intra-community discussion about the role of our histories and some of the present problems we might experience, from guilt about our pasts to misogyny within the community. Some ideas for discussion:
  • Trauma experienced as a female-perceived person and the difficulty of engaging with that/talking about it as a man or non-binary person
  • Engaging with an actual history of perpetrating violence, abuse, verbal insults, etc. when socialized as male without bolstering the fucked-up “trans women are violent” narrative
  • Finding space for discussions about gender where one has actual experience that is relevant without encouraging others to misgender us
  • Cycles of abuse for trans people
  • How do we address misogyny within the trans community while still fighting external fights (ex, transformative justice approach?)
  • What is the impact of specific cultural narratives around gender on trans people and how do we address problematic aspects of how we were raised to understand gender while maintaining a cultural identity and fighting racism, xenophobia, bigotry, etc?
Join us on Twitter this Sunday, 2/3, from 2pm-4pm EST, by following the hashtag #transchat to join the conversation!

Avory Faucette is a genderqueer radical feminist activist and writer.  Zie writes at the blog Radically Queer and works at the National Center for Transgender Equality.  Hir work focuses on intersections of gender, sexuality, and other identities.  Zie is particularly interested in non-binary gender and sexuality.  Zie is also an award-winning international human rights legal activist with a law degree from the University of Iowa.  Hir views stated here do not reflect those of any organization or entity.