At birth, a doctor looks at our external genitalia and classifies us as one of two options, male or female. If male, you are treated a certain way immediately. Blue clothes. Trucks and cars for toys. Descriptive words are used like, handsome, tall, strong. If female, pink clothes, dresses, dolls, and words like beautiful and pretty. But what if you are transgender?
We all have masculine and feminine traits. Most males (assigned at birth) lean toward the masculine side. Most females (assigned at birth) lean toward the feminine side. If you are male and lean toward the female side, or part way, you are probably transgender. As I am. This is something that I constantly struggle with, because society has pushed me to the masculine side all my life.
So when an article caught my eye yesterday, I found myself feeling odd about it. I only spent a minute or two reading it, but as the day went on, I felt uneasy about the article. And a little upset.
The article was titled, Airline Allows Man in Women’s Panties to Fly.
I’m always amazed at how hurtful people can be, especially when not face to face, like the comment section below an article. Jabs like “I hope the airline had barf bags,” or “If that thing sat next to me. I’d Jump.” Wow! Would you really jump? These people don’t know this person. But based on the visual, he is diseased. An idiot. Crazy. Disgusting. Worthy of jumping off a plane. What else? You fill in the blank. Anything bad, you can insert it here. After thinking about it later in the day, I became upset that this person was the face of transgender. Our poster child. When the general public conjures up a visual of transgender people, or crossdressers, they see her. This is sad, and quite honestly pisses me off. First off, she is NOT the face of transgender. That’s not to say she isn’t transgender, but instead, she is not a good representation of what most transgender people look or act like. Her outfit would NOT be accepted at any transgender conference I have attended, unless she was pool side. But unfortunately the media don’t show all the transgender people who go on planes that dress “appropriately” because that is not a story anyone cares about.
While en femme, I have traveled on airplanes, taken long train trips, crossed the border into Canada and back. I try to blend in. It’s not about getting the stares. It’s about me feeling feminine, feeling female.
So, what is the face of transgender? Honestly, it’s me. It is Alyssa, Tiessa, Teri, Jia, Jackie, Denise, Alexii, Stephanie and many other people that I have had the pleasure to meet and now call my friends. Each one is unique. Has her our own style and personality. The face of transgender is not the person on the plane wearing panties and 4-inch heels. That is the stereotype that the media have given us.