Just today, my partner wanted to talk – she felt conflicted. She felt that she had to ‘be a man’ for me – to allow me to feel more like a woman. But that this was depriving her of feeling like a woman. I think this really underscores the importance of open communications and checking one’s assumptions – often.
I explained that I am not looking for, nor want a man or the influence of a man. If one has to use a label, then I would be dead center lesbian – I don’t want a man or someone being ‘manly’. Plus, I am in love with her – all of her – ‘her’ traits – emotions – body/soul – everything. I don’t want nor expect her to change, especially for me to feel more as a woman. I want to feel – like ‘me’ – no facade – free to express myself and act myself. That just happens to match what society calls or labels as a ‘woman’.
I think we need to just drop the male/female labels and not get hung up that being a certain way or having a certain trait means we are more masculine or feminine because of it. Helen Boyd’s “She’s not the man I married” goes into this in exquisite depth. Forget about labels – there are far more exceptions then any cohesiveness to them. Going through a transition, especially before starting one, we want to be everything female, somewhat blinding ourselves to our own reality.
I think this is necessary: old Chinese proverb: “the student must reject the mentor in order to excel and move forward”. I think we first have to reject maleness and embrace what we see as total femininity to make those first steps, to clearly define what is and what is not. This allows us to break the life long facade we held up and to identify it as such and see it clearly.
However, this is an extreme – the pendulum is far over to one side, opposite of where is was – the extreme other side. At some point it is imperative to center it, to center ourselves, to become not some idealized non-existent reality that no natal woman can even achieve, but to come back to ourselves – to explore and find who we are and then be that.
After all, that is what started this journey: we were not who we authentically ‘are’ and needed to change. Now, if that means you are good at and enjoy car mechanics before, then do that now! That was part of you. Forget the labels, forget that’s a ‘masculine’ trait – its just a trait, a capability. (By the way, one of the best mechanics here on this island is a natal woman ….. )
So, my partner and I have come to an agreement and understanding – we both just want to be ourselves – so let’s just do that. She was missing the male that I used to be, but upon further exploration, she saw that those traits and capabilities were still there. She wants to be the woman she is – and that is exactly who I fell in love with and need the most especially as I go through this transition and also through the rest of my life.
So, this journey is about being the authentic ‘me’ – not the facade I put on before. Society best describes the summation of ‘me’ as a woman – and that is what I am. But more than that or any labels – I am simply ….. me !!
With much Aloha,