Here’s the promised compilation of my recent trangender-related facebook mini-posts. Sorry for the weak update, I’m having a pretty intense (in a good way) time in Berlin. Will find some time later to make a real post, I promise.
The question of my sexuality is a funny thing in regards to my gender transformation.
I am pretty sure I’m bisexual though lack of experience means that I feel I can’t be sure of it entirely. I’m also unsure about *how* bisexual I am, how many and what sort of men I’m attracted to, and what role I expect my attraction to men to play in my future life.
The possibility of being lesbian is something I feel I need to come to terms with. Perhaps part of that is unconscious homophobia or homo-nervousness (something that I want to work through and resolve if so). But mainly I’m worried because being lesbian would make it harder to find a partner according to my already pretty specific needs.
The idea that most of the people I meet outside of the LGBT scene who I have a crush on wouldn’t crush on me back is uncomfortable. Though, I think I had an unrealistic expectation before when I was mainly dealing in straight relationships that everyone I liked should like me back. Maybe the thought of being lesbian forces me to face up to that.
The other thing that makes me uncomfortable about potentially being a lesbian is that people who are already critical of my transsexual status take my same-sex attraction as a further reason to doubt who I am. I already downplay my same-sex attraction a little when I talk to strangers and I’m not sure if I like that pattern.
Perhaps that last part boils down to my own insecurity about my change. That almost primal fear of one day waking up and finding it all was an illusion and feeling like I’ve fucked up on a massive scale. So I’m transsexual and ALSO a lesbian? What gives me the right to think I’m such a rare individual? What if I’m just fooling myself? (I know I’m not, though that’s a sort of irrational fear I have).
I guess, just like I never had an identity as a trans person until recently and find it hard to assimilate such a big thing about myself, an identity as a lesbian would be a very big thing too and hard to assimilate. Being bisexual is maybe easier because I don’t have to turn down men on the basis that I only like girls, etc etc. It’s a bit more under the radar, and possibly more accepted or at least easier for people to ignore.
I think though an identity as bi feels more comfortable me just because it *is* what I am. And maybe it doesn’t need more questioning than that. But I have some way to go in coming to terms with the full scope of my sexuality, and my gender change adds a particular question mark to that.
Whatever happens I have to come to terms with something I didn’t use to need to come to terms with: that I have and enjoy same-sex relationships. That’s something a bit new for me, and a big thing to assimilate to my identity and self-understanding added on top of the confusion that is a gender transition.
So now it’s like a puzzle for which I already know the answer. I’m still questioning myself because that’s the process, and I’m learning things, but really I’m discovering how the answer will unfold – not the answer itself, I already know that.
My attraction to men seems to work like a sterotypical girl’s attraction while my attraction to women is a little closer to the stereotypical guy’s attraction.
I can be attracted at first sight to almost any woman who doesn’t look horrendous. Kissing one of these women rarely feels like it’d be very unpleasant, assuming they want to kiss me back.
Guys tend to need to grow on me, and I find I become attracted after some time and getting comfortable with them. While I can be attracted at first sight, it’s rarer. And the idea of getting close to some men (actually quite a lot of them) feels actively repulsive.
Being that I nervously want to prove to myself I’m properly bisexual I tend to overanalyse this and get nervous when I find I’d rather fight a lion than kiss certain guys who I feel “should” be attractive to me. But, when I analyse more closely, I think I’m putting expectations on my attraction to men to work exactly the same as my attraction to women. In reality it doesn’t.
1. Wondering if at my relatively low level of dysphoria transitioning fully is necessarily worth it? Particularly if I turn out to be lesbian. Reducing my dating pool so much is not an inviting prospect.
2. Wondering if I actually have a choice, or just the illusion of choice? Could I live as a man knowing I’m not? Could I walk around wearing drag (male clothes) and do the role of a feminine male, only telling my closer friends that I’m actually someone else?
3. Did I strip away layers of untruth to get here, or did I discover a fluidity to my gender identity and exploit it to feel like a woman? Can I feel like a man again? Could I actually get back the ability to enjoy my sexuality as a man, e.g. be able to enjoy penetrating again? Would I want to?
…The most disconcerting thing is that for most of my life I felt at most disassociated with my penis (an example representing my larger condition). Now I very strongly desire an operation that would be at once expensive, risky and somewhat incomplete. If there’s any way to be happy without going this route it’d be good to work out how.
You know what else I love about being trans? That I’ve finally gotten into a major personal growth journey that Steve Pavlina *didn’t* do first.