Saturday, April 30, 2011

A View Into Being Trans

Today I have a guest post by a Blogger I really like. Biki shares the journey of being Trans and all the ups and downs that self discovery and life presents. Biki's blog The Great Wide Open is very heartfelt and open. Share the Journey yourself.

Now A View Into Being Trans by my friend Biki.

Describing what it means to be trans is tricky endeavor indeed.  Why is it so hard to explain what it's like, how it feels to be trans?  Well, tis a different experience for each of us, but what it really boils down to is that it's almost like trying to explain the color blue to someone that is blind.  Cisgender people, (someone whose gender identity matches their anatomical gender at birth) haven't ever felt the separation of their mental and physical selves.  And that's why trans people fall back on a few cliché statements; in the wrong body, never felt right when I looked in the mirror, always felt there was something different about me, I never felt like I fit in with people of my sex, etc.  While those are true as to how we do feel, it's only the tip of the iceberg. 

How best to describe it…. I feel like a stranger from a distant planet.  My childhood was filled with adults telling me that "girls" don't: sit that way, stand that way, be loud, jump around, etc, etc, etc.  I never could trust my natural instincts on how to be me.  And so I learned to watch and emulate a foreign species, women to attempt to fit in.  While I can blend in, I don't fit in at all well.  In the world of women, I'm a foreigner who is confused as to the subtext as to what is really being said.  I can't trust my instincts as to how to act, I don't mesh well with people of my sex; I live life feeling slightly off kilter.

There is a wide variant as to how strongly the disconnect between the physical self and the gender self is among transgender people.  For most trans, life is livable wearing a sex that doesn't match our gender.   For other trans, life inside the wrong sex is a constant soul pain, and has been so their entire lives.  The only way to cure the pain is opposite sex hormones and surgery.  Something I would do in a flash, except I can't perceive my life without my adorable husband, who isn't comfortable with the thought of being married to a guy, and I totally understand his feelings.

While I would be more comfortable living within the skin of a male, instead of just the mind of one, there is yet another piece of the trans puzzle.  To never be seen as to who one actually is.  Forever and ever, I'll only be seen as a woman, never the man I actually am.  Living an invisible life slowly corrodes who you are into a blurry reflection of both and yet neither.

As a child I fully knew that I was a boy, without any doubt.  Gift giving occasions were usually a let down for me as I asked for traditionally male playthings, cars, trucks, trains, race tracks, etc.  Yes, I had Barbies, and baby dolls, and yes I played with them, males do have a nurturing side if they are allowed to express it.  Then came puberty and all the physical changes that occur, without a doubt the worst time in my life ever.  With puberty comes the end of magical thinking, and I finally stopped believing I would wake up one day to find that I was a boy for real.  With the end of that belief was a vast wasteland of what next?  How to be a girl?

Many of us go the extreme opposite of what we feel to be, attempting to feel whole by being extremely feminine, or taking masculinity to the extreme.  Many M2F's have served in the armed forces, the Marines and Army seem to be the favorites.  Several F2M's have tried breast implants, overly feminine clothing trying to feel more feminine, less fractured.  Me?  I couldn't do the overly feminine thing, I haunted the line between the two sexes.  Dressing my female body in male clothing, with long hair and sometimes make-up.  Or wearing some articles of each sexes clothing together.  So, canvas high tops and a skirt with a boys long sleeved t-shirt, and people looked at me like a freak.  Yes, there were times I dressed "normally", in full on female attire, and it's always felt like a costume.  And as I age, the feeling of being in costume has gotten stronger to the point where last year I ditched all my girl clothing.

Trans people are straight, bi, and gay in around the same numbers as are cisgender people.  Within the trans community ones sexuality isn't really a big issue.  What is a huge issue is the ability to "pass" well.  Those that pass well, really look down upon those of us that don't pass well.  The transwomen strive to be ultra feminine, the transmen desire to be as masculine as possible.  If one is a femme transman, he will be looked down on and at the least ignored, at the most, hated.  A "butchy" transwoman?  Holy cats and ants you wouldn't believe the hate she will have to endure.  The trans community adheres so strongly to the cookie cutter gender roles our society cranks out, step outside of those roles with dress or actions and be prepared to be hated on.  As for where I fall?  More of a femme kinda guy.  Living all of these years in "girl world" has taken it's toll on how masculine I could have grown up to be. 

When I went to the transgender conference in Boston, I gathered me some misunderstanding and some disbelief of my status of trans.  Why?  Because they could only see one way to be a transman, to be a F2M, and I didn't fit into it at all.  Like all oppressed minorities we have taken the rules of normalcy to an extreme degree, and use them against our own community members.  What bothered them about me?  I don't bind my breasts down, its vastly uncomfortable and it has the backlash of making me think more about my breasts than I normally ever do.  I wear earrings, even though I wore male ones, they only saw earrings.  I had painted my nails black for the decade dance, I went as a metal rocker.  I don't know of any metal rocker worth his high who doesn't have black nails.  But because I forgot the nail polish remover, that was a mark against me as well.  However I did meet one awesome F2M who has told me that he uses my life and how I live it as an example for others that there isn't one correct way of being trans.

By breaking the silence and refusing to stay hidden another minute, gays and lesbians and bi's have forced our society to exam what is considered "normal" sexual behavior.  Transgender people force the examination of what is considered "normal" in the realms of gender and sex.  Gender roles, pigeon holing of what behavior is acceptable out of each sex, and even more scary for the blinkered straights is the fact that there is more than one way to be male, female one; can be a multihued blend of both.   In my viewpoint, if allowed to grow naturally from puberty only a very few people would think of themselves as fully straight, or gay, most of us would fall somewhere within the city limits of bi-ville.  And I think the same thing about gender.  If we didn't so rigidly adhere to the fallacy that everyone is whole cloth only one gender, we would see an easing of our stupid roles and scripts as to what it means to be male or female. 

Love is Never Wrong

Tuesday, April 26, 2011

News Update

I would like to recognize two good pieces of news for my international viewers.

First is the election of Taiga Ishikawa in Japan. He is the nations first gay elected official.

The second item is the first time Moscow officials have approved a Gay Pride parade in the city's square.

Love is Never Wrong

Give A Damn

Today I want to feature the We Give A Damn campaign. It is a place to learn more about issues, get involved, and lend your support. They cover many issues in the LGBT community and are trying to make life better. Anyone can get involved. I do believe we all give a damn. So please go and check them out. Learn more and add your support to the many who need you.!/wegiveadamn

Love is Never Wrong

Monday, April 25, 2011

The Pride Fairy

Once in a while I come across someone that just makes me smile with hope and pride. Lance is a such a person. He and his friend have created The Pride Fairy.  It is a wonderful site with many resources for teens on many topics. It has links and stories and many positive messages.

If you are a teen and need to talk to others or want information this is a good place to learn the basics. Please check it out.

Lances Channel on YouTube

The Pride Fairy

Love is Never Wrong

Friday, April 22, 2011


In the last several days on several sites I frequent words have become daggers, sentences became lances, and paragraphs bombs. People unleashed a war of minds and emotions. A war that should never have been.

When we choose to interact with people in life we may not always like what we read or hear. That does not give us the right to skip over respectful dissent to overt violence. And yes words can be violent. Sometimes they do more damage than a physical beating because you attack the core of a person.

People are so quick to dismiss words. They will say "Its just a word", "It means nothing", or even "Grow thicker skin." Everyone is different and can handle different levels of stress and assault. No ones pain or abilities should ever be dismissed. We all matter.

When you dismiss words you dismiss people. Everyone has a voice and everyone deserves to be heard. Everyone deserves respect and dignity. I know my mantra may seem like a tired call but it is true. Only in respect and dignity can we truly achieve and thrive.

Choose your words with care. A discussion is not about suiting up in armor and wielding the mightiest weapon to slay your foe. It is about exchanging your thoughts and views in life. It is respect. It is extending dignity.

Even if someone completely offends you and your views extend respect and dignity. You can disagree and you can choose not to participate in a conversation with them. But leave words as tools for exchange. For when they become weapons you plant a seed that grows a bitter fruit.

So be kind, be respectful, and extend dignity to those you encounter in life. We are all people and have feelings. So with words extend what you deserve.

Love is Never Wrong

Tuesday, April 19, 2011

We All Need Support

Today I have some varied support links. Hopefully they help.

Totally Tapioca is an a capella group raising awareness and money for LGBT charities. Here are their links and a video.

Adult Survivors of Child Abuse

Stop Bullying

Reach Out deals with many topics youth struggle with.

Rape Crisis Information Pathfinder

The Trailblazer Campaign is a new effort focused to improve the lives of actors and musicians.

Love is Never Wrong

Saturday, April 16, 2011

The Grand Masquerade

In a world of near instant communication anywhere in the world we as a society have been playing a Grand Masquerade. We hide ourselves in allusions of grandeur, lies, and deceptions. We have even deceived ourselves into thinking we are exempt from the rules of Humanity.

In our eagerness to belong, stand out, and find love we have forgotten a most important notion. We are speaking and acting before a fellow Human. Our words sting and blister as hot as any scalding liquid, our lies crash down the hopes of others, our distorted image of ourselves cast naught but a wretched image that really resembles little of ourselves, and our self lies destroy us just as much as they do others.

Life is not a party, you are not in costume, and although the Internet can provide a mask it is one of limitation rather than choice. Your guests and those you invite into your life are real. They may not be before you but they are there and as Human as you.

Speak with truth. Act with compassion. Acknowledge respect. Extend dignity!

Be true to yourself and be true to others. We are all voyagers in this Human journey. Do you want your legacy to be of masks and false party games or of connections and true difference?

Take off the mask, remove the cloak of distraction, and be Human. We await you to join us.

Love is Never Wrong

Friday, April 15, 2011

Today is Such a Drag

Today I want to feature some talented and beautiful people. Today is for the fabulous in all of us. Enjoy!

Misty Eyez - Misty is a wonderful and compassionate person. You'll fall in love.

Sister Unity - Sister Unity is part of the Sisters of Perpetual Indulgence. Many good and supportive thoughts and ideas. Take time and listen

The Sisters of Perpetual Indulgence - Since not everyone may be aware of them learn more here.

Hedda Lettuce is fun and posess' a sharp wit that tingles upon the naughty.

The Fabulous Wonder Twins  - A more personal and behind the scenes look.

Miss Understood NYC  - Lots of fun things to watch.

Love is Never Wrong

Thursday, April 14, 2011

National Day of Silence

The National Day of Silence is a silent protest to the bullying and harassment of LGBT student and their allies. Students take a vow of silence to symbolize the suppression they undergo. Please support this event. We all deserve to live in respect and dignity, free from violence and hate. The protest is April 15th.

Day of Silence - The site is down as of me writing this but check back.

Day of Silence via Wiki

The Gay Family Values Channel has done a very nice job covering this watch their video.


Love is Never Wrong

Trans Blogs

Its been a while since I have done blogs and I have never done any for my Trans readers. So today is for you.

Transgender Workplace Diversity talks about law, politics, and other issues of workplace diversity.

Trans Group Blog discusses many issues from news to information.

The Transadvocate is a news and information site.

Trans Universe is a news style blog.

Love is Never Wrong

Wednesday, April 13, 2011

Project Love

I started Project Love to show the faces of love in our community. I wanted people to know we are families and hold family values. It was my hope that the knowledge that love is love no matter who shares it would change minds. However battling my own limitations and that of getting the message out to find contributors has been daunting.

Today however I have found someone else doing much the same thing I wanted. They have many people involved and are doing a wonderful job. So today I am closing my project and instead giving you the link to a much better one.

Couples For Equality

Love is Never Wrong


Sometimes the hardest thing in our lives is to maintain our spirit. For whatever reason we falter and things can build up and cause us to crash in a dramatic spectacle of life. Sometimes we ignore warnings and others we never see them coming. It all impacts our spirit.

I believe the hardest thing we must learn in life is accept your failures and disasters. None of us is perfect and we will falter at some point. It is however important to pick yourself up, admit such, and carry on. Be humbled, be honest, and resume your journey in life.

Take with you the lessons of each falter and fumble. Learn to recognize and overcome that which has brought you low or hurting. Seek out those you can trust and release your burden. We as Humans have a remarkable ability for compassion. We should extend it and accept it.

As much as you share success share failure. Everyone should know its ok to have crisis or pain. Its ok to ask for help. Its ok to need others in life. We share a connection and our Humanity its bond.

Maintain your spirit like a lone candle in the windy night. place it in a lantern and guard it from the wind. Keep its flame strong and right it when it falls. Reignite the blown out wick and blaze once more. Your glow is your spirit and it shines brightly as you allow it. It may ebb and flow with the wind but it is there. You be to.

From one ever ebbing and flowing spirit to another, I hope to see your flicker in the distant night.

Love is Never Wrong

Tuesday, April 12, 2011

I Am: Trans People Speak

I wanted to share a wonderful project today. I Am speaks for the smallest group in in our community. They deserve much better than they recieve. I would like to thank Dr. Jillian Weiss for her article that made me aware of this project. You may read her article here:

I Am

Love is Never Wrong

Saturday, April 9, 2011


Today I awoke to the news of the passing of a special person. I can't say I have ever met Ellie or seen her perform live but I have watched and read many things by her. Such an amazing story to realize ones life long dream so late in life. To bravely step forward and live that dream and share it with the world. So a shinning light has dimmed its glow and graces us no more, but the light once cast has helped us grow. We have been touched and thus the light never dies but lives on in those graced by it. Here's to you Ellie!

Love is Never Wrong

Tuesday, April 5, 2011

Links of Love International XII

Today after reading about the brutal attack on a gay rights activist in Russia I want to offer some more sites for my Russian readers. Stay strong and stand for your rights. They may knock you down but get back up and stand with the knowledge it is not just your battle but of all of us, now and in the future. Today I stand with you.

Saint Petersburg Slavic Gay Pride

The Circle - Located in Murmansk

Russian Queer World

Infoshare offer information about HIV/AIDS and safe sex. The site is available in English and Russian.

Archangelsk Gay Information Pool is more social and event based. It is available in English and Russian.

Russian LGBT Network. The site is available in English and Russian.

Russian National GLBT Center  Together

Gcasta Siberia (Tomsk)

Legal Information News Agency (LINA) Charity Fund Rainbow

Love is Never Wrong

Monday, April 4, 2011

Gay Michigan III

Today's focus on Michigan is student resources. Most all of these links will have resources for education, support, and advocacy. Some may have entertainment and health as well.

Albion College has Break the Silence. It is a Gay-Straight Alliance. Little is listed directly online. Contact them for more info.

Grand Valley State University has wonderful and concise site with links to many resources. It will link you to all the groups on campus.

The University of Michigan has four groups on campus. The first being Spectrum Center. It has links to many resources. Next is the Law Schools OUTLaws. Their Medical School has Bisexuals, Gays, Lesbians, and Allies (BGLAM). Finally The Business school has Ross Out for Business.

Wayne State University has their Gender and Sexuality Resource Community.

Michigan State University has two resources. First is their LGBT Resource Center. Next is the Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual, Transgender, Faculty, Staff, and Graduate Student Association.

The University of Michigan-Flint has the Ellen Bommarito Center.

Western Michigan University has LGBT Student Services.

Kalamazoo College has Kaleidoscope. This is only a Facebook page.

Lansing Community College has a Gay-Straight Alliance. This is a Yahoo group and you will have to log in to access it.

Northern Michigan University has OUTLook.

Central Michigan University has two resources. First is their Office of Gay & Lesbian Programs. Next is their Gay/Straight Alliance. The alliance is a Facebook site and their outbound links are broken. So little direct information is available. You will need to make direct contact.

Oakland University has their Gender and Sexuality Center.

Eastern Michigan University has their Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, and Transgender Resource Center.

Love is Never Wrong

Friday, April 1, 2011

Project Love

Today I am announcing Project Love. It is the stories and faces of love in the LGBT community. To many times we are portrayed as enemies of love, family, and family values. That is simply not the case.

Like anyone else we date, we fall in love, we get married, and we even raise families. We are love!

I invite you to view these wonderful lives and even share your own.

Project Love

Love is Never Wrong