Friday, August 9, 2013

More Panic

Well, it's always nice to have something affirmed, even if it is inadvertent.  Dana Beyer has a new article on Huffington Post that is a perfect example of what I wrote about in Panic in the Ranks!  The simple fact is, a few examples of "transgender" men deciding that becoming, or being, a woman was not the right path for them has them up in arms.

The problem is, in their effort to defend their house of cards, they are posting outright lies.  For example, Beyer has this to say:
Trans persons, like gay persons, are "born that way." While the younger generation is now claiming space between genders or negating gender entirely, I will focus only on what most Americans see as the trans experience: persons raised as boys who become women, and those raised as girls who become men.
Nope, not even remotely true...  Trans people, i.e. those who identify as transgender have adopted a label that is highly subjective, and pretty much meaningless.  Transsexual people, who are relatively rare, and who may, or more likely may not, identify as transsexual, are born that way.  But the vast majority of people who identify as transgender are not remotely transsexual.  And they are also not remotely born that way.  Not even everyone who engages in homosexual behavior is born that way.  For example, it is well documented that men in prison will have sex with other men, even though they have not done so prior to incarceration, and do not do so after being released.  

Then Beyer goes on to make this ridiculous claim:
The most important fact needed to understand this process of physical and gender transition is that the sense of oneself is innate. It does not suddenly transform as we grow, or change with puberty. It is not determined by clinging mothers or distant fathers. It matters not that Mom wanted a girl and got a boy, or that Dad punished his son for dancing. Our sense of self is inborn, and that is to be expected with a sexually reproducing species. Variations in sexual orientation, choices about procreation and the like are irrelevant for this discussion.
Let's consider reality, instead.  We are expected to believe that someone who has lived to the age of 40 0r 50, showing no indication of actually believing that they are a "really" a female, is married with several children, has had a successful career as a man, and then rather suddenly announces that he has a life-long history of "gender dysphoria" and has always known he was a woman, is not, perhaps, making most of it up?  Usually the only indication of gender issues in such cases is, possibly, fetishistic crossdressing.  And in rare cases, the progression from the onset of fetishistic crossdressing to "full transition" can be quite sudden.

The two example Beyer chooses to focus are poor ones:
So while we may be raised as boys, our brains have told us we're girls, and vice versa. The process of gender transition aligns the body and social life with the mind. It is, in a very profound respect, coming home. The process has been beautifully described by women such as Jenny Boylan and Joy Ladin.
Both were late transitioners who are not living as women, but as transgender people.  In the case of Joy Ladin in particularly, the ex-wife presents a very different version of the story from the one told by Ladin.

Beyer, much like Sandeen, tries to argue that the "real reason" someone might detransition is not that they realize they are not "really a woman," but is only because of external pressures:
If at any time during or after this period one chooses to stop the process, that is called detransitioning. External pressures can be intense, and it may simply be imprudent for some people to continue. For others it becomes medically or financially impossible, or the tradeoffs simply may not add up. It's unfair to consider those situations failures, though after having lived closeted for decades, mired in shame, it's extremely hard to not feel like a failure. That's why detransitioning is not a panacea and often ends up creating an emotional state worse than the one present during the difficult transition process. You cannot undo the coming-out process, just as you cannot un-ring a bell.
Or, more likely, the person simply realizes that they are not really a woman after all...  In some cases, it can come after years of living a lie.

It is amazing the lengths that Beyer will go to in an effort to avoid the truth:
This often unavoidable sense of failure may drive a person to fabricate a fantasy to explain away the transition altogether. This isn't surprising, as we are often looking to understand our actions, particularly those that cause a great deal of stress to ourselves and our loved ones. Some simply can't accept that they were "born that way," so they create narratives about having been stung by a bee or forcibly cross-dressed by Mom until puberty, or having suffered transient global amnesia. While we don't understand all the causes of gender dysphoria -- we know some cases are caused by genetic and chromosomal variations; metabolic differences in utero; environmental pollutants called endocrine disruptors, such as DES (diethylstilbestrol) and dioxin; or association with more generalized intersex conditions -- we do know that bee stings, amnesia, and parental behavior do not play a role. Claiming them to wall off shame and embarrassment only serves to minimize the truly difficult challenges faced by so many others and trivializes the success of those who make it through the gauntlet of societal resistance.
I mean, silly can you get?  It is not a matter of not admitting that one is "born that way," it is a matter of it being obvious that one was not, and that one decided, for whatever reason, that being a woman would be better.  We are not talking about transsexuals here.  We are talking about delusional men.  Which are the most common form of "transgender person."  Delusional men who, in spite of privilege sufficient to insulate them from reality, still realize that being a woman is not for them.  And admitting any error is near impossible for some men.


Nicky said...

Their in panic mode, because it's exposing their fallacy and their illogical ideology for all to see. They are in panic mode because they are trying to silence anyone with a brain to come to a conclusion on them and realize that they are Men who have a sexual fetish for women. can you imagine what would happen if their fallacy was exposed wide open for all to see.

Hell Bedlam said...

This is pointing out (to me) what a world of difference there is between the word "transsexual" and the word "transgender," which I hadn't given enough thought to before. I mean, I really wouldn't mind sharing a bathroom or locker room with a person who was M2F who'd undergone SRS because clearly that is someone committed to being a woman and isn't just invading female spaces willy (haha) nilly. Transsexual has that connotation of *commitment*. Transgender as a word just bothers me. We're all transgender. I've never acted "like a woman." Except that one time a rat got in the house. :-) Anyway, I think I'll stop saying "trans*" and start being more specific when writing about this. Thanks Jennifer, I like your blog!