Monday, November 29, 2010

There is Truth, and Then There is Cooke...

I have to say, I was rather amused to discover that Suzan Cooke is ranting about me again.  I seem to be one of her favorite obsessions sometimes.  Granted, I have taken her on more than a few times myself.

But, I want to correct a few errors in her post....

First off, she brings up an unfortunate throw-away line I posted on a web site I threw together some years ago...
It was there that I first encountered someone who considers herself to be “True/Classic Transsexual”  and can always be depended upon to trash TG folks,.  Only in those days she wasn’t so certain about herself.  Indeed.  Her self description was, “More than a transvestite and less than a transsexual.”
First off, it was actually my therapists who considered me to be a "True/Classic Transsexual." Second, it is true that I disagree strongly with the TG view.  And I am not shy about speaking out against it.  Now, as I said, I did use that line on a web site I threw together.  It was back in the earlier days of the web, when vanity sites were all the rage.  And it was also during a difficult time i in my life.

I had actually transitioned a few years earlier.  I met with a therapist, who quickly diagnosed me as a "transsexual."  I was treated by a endocrinologist who had studied with Harry Benjamin.  And a couple of years into my transition, for reasons that actually had little to do with my transition, or with whether or not I was transsexual, I came very close to what could be called a nervous breakdown.  At that time, some issues related to my transition, along with the other problems (most financial) pushed me to the breaking point.  

I could not deal with everything, and one morning, in something of a panic, I decided to de-transition, primarily to find some amount of relief from what was overwhelming me.  Quite simply, at that time it was the only thing I had control over.  I quickly convinced myself that it was the right thing to do, and over the next seven years I struggled to find myself.  

At first, I tried to deny true self completely.  That did not last long.  Then I tried to convince myself that I could find a middle ground.  That was the point at which I wrote that inane comment.  The modern transgender silliness had not quite caught on, though there were early bits of it online.  I actually tended to argue with the more extreme proponents, who were just beginning to formulate their efforts to "deconstruct gender."

Simply put, I knew I was not a transvestite, but I didn't want to admit that I really was a transsexual.  I knew what admitting I was transsexual would mean.  But, as I looked inward, the truth became clear.  I sought out a new therapist (my previous one had contributed to my near breakdown) and I began to deal with who, and what, I was.  I also took my time.  My first transition had been a bit spontaneous, and I rushed into it with no planning.

I took my time.  I planned.  And then I made my move.  I changed my name on a Monday, spent Tuesday getting my paperwork in order, and on Wednesday I went out and found a job. I was prepared for the changes that would come, and I survived.  It was not easy, but I was focused.  Over time, I came to grips with issues like my sexuality (I am a straight woman) and I moved across country to San Francisco.  I found a good job here, got my surgery, and my life is vastly improved.  

No, it has not been with problems.  But, and this is what is really important, I have been able to handle things without falling apart.  When I was pretending to be a male, I could not do that.  The least obstacle seemed insurmountable.  I would often go to pieces over things that I would now laugh off.  The proof, as they say, is in the pudding.

Another thing that needs to be corrected....  I hate no one.  I object to the silliness that is spewed by transgender extremists, including Suzan Cooke, but I had no one.  That would be contrary to my faith, which I am not ashamed of.  

Also, I would like to remind people that I do not censor comments unless they contain personal attacks, usually against others.  I won't tolerate the invasion of my privacy, or that of anyone else, but beyond that I am not afraid of what someone might have to say.  In fact, the vast majority of comments censored here have been ads for Asian porn sites.  That is not acceptable, and will be removed.

And let me address one final error.  Cooke makes the following statement:
As a result I have several people who devote an inordinate amount of time to trashing me for not wanting to be part of their “Classic Transsexual/HBS” club.
No, that is not really the case at all.  First off, I would be absolutely appalled if Cooke suddenly chose to embrace such a view.  Cooke's doing so would be one of the worst things that could happen.  Cooke is, quite honestly, an egotistical kook who thinks that she is remotely relevant in the world today.  Sadly, she has a few who share that delusion, and who continue to stroke her ego because they imagine she is some arbiter of veracity.  I will admit, at one time I shared that delusion myself.  Then I realized Cooke is to be pitied, rather than feared.  She is clinging to a largely imagined past where she was the alpha transsexual.  Now, she is trying to relive those glory days, and failing miserably.

No, I, and others, speak out against Cooke because she has embraced the silliness of the transgender extremists.  It really isn't about Cooke, but is about the idiocy that Cooke has come to endorse.  Most of the time I just have a sad laugh at Cooke's extremist rants.  The Sixties are past, the Weathermen are gone, and for good or bad, the country is going back to the Right.

Extremism, of any sort, tends to wind up being an effort in futility.  Demanding outrageous concessions is only going to end in valiant defeat.  Unfortunately, some prefer that to accomplishing something through concession.

Oh well, Cooke has always been a "legend in her own mind."


Aria Blue said...

I think it's pretty crappy to try to judge someone from an incident long ago. Anyone who has been through this should have some empathy and understand how crazy things can get before you reach the end of the process. Holding on to such a flimsy "accusation" after all these years is pretty childish.

I think the proof is in the living, and that's the true measure. A transvestite could never have your positive outcome and normalization of their life the way you have. And I've known some post op transvestites, so I know what I'm talking about! lol

Suzan's problem is like many other people's problems. They refuse to adapt to the times, and so they become irrelevant. They expect the world to conform to them, when of course it never will.

The only way to stay relevant is to keep up with the times and be willing to meet the world on its own terms. I guess that's how you know what's really important to someone.

lisalee18wheeler said...

It's almost getting to the point where people like Suzan Cooke and her ilk can be ignored. Your narrative is your own.

Anonymous said...

As someone who was around in those days, there were a lot of accusations flying around USNET back then. Cooke was run out of, and herself was one of the judgmental sisters of transsexual purity.

Cooke's brand of revisionist history is entertaining but not founded in much fact.