Transgender is it just me that is totally perplexed?

Discussion in 'UK politics, current affairs and news' started by The Flying Pig, Sep 14, 2017.

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  1. mojo pixy

    mojo pixy unquantifiable hazards

    This whole debate is centering on women and femininity, like femininity is some holy grail and if only we could settle what it means to be a woman and who gets to be called woman and make sure women are happy about it all then everything will be ok.

    It seems as if half the debate is going unhad.

    I'd genuinely like to hear what those leaning towards trans-exclusivity feel about trans men. Especially what trans-exclusive tendency men (do we have any of those? Bet we do) think about women presenting as men and claiming male pronouns.

    I can't add more because I don't really care any more if people want to be men or women or what they want to be called. I think I did care a bit, even as recently as the first day of this thread, but by now I'm feeling the apathy more than ever. For which I think I'm grateful, on reflection.
    CRI and SpookyFrank like this.
  2. FabricLiveBaby!

    FabricLiveBaby! Live Baby Fabric!

    But you see this is the problem. Isn't it?

    If you are *subconsciously* treating a transman as a woman that'll come out in the way you behave towards them. It'll be recognised (correctly) as gender specific behaviour - you say you treat men and women the same, but admit sometimes you may subconsciously not, thus belying the fact that you don't actually see them as men.

    Using 'he" in this instance would just be humouring and be picked up as such.

    Now, you say you broadly treat men and women equal, but what if it's so subconscious in your behaviour that you don't notice you don't? What good would calling someone "he" do, when your behaviour points you to be hiding your true feelings?
  3. Athos

    Athos Well-Known Member

    I can only try to overcome my subconsciousness/ socialisation. Accepting I won't always be successful. It's a way of trying to minimise upset to them. Not sure why that's a problem, really.
    FabricLiveBaby! likes this.
  4. FabricLiveBaby!

    FabricLiveBaby! Live Baby Fabric!

    Not trying to upset them is not a problem. The problem comes from knowing the treatment, despite the pronouns, is still misgendered.

    I'm not trying to be cruel or anything but it's impossible to be self aware all the time. This doesn't apply to only you but everyone.
    kabbes likes this.
  5. Athos

    Athos Well-Known Member

    What's the alternative? How is it better?
  6. FabricLiveBaby!

    FabricLiveBaby! Live Baby Fabric!

    I dunno. Honestly.

    As an immediate response it might work, but then also it might not. I don't know if anyone was watching big brother, but India was constantly talking about how she wasn't seen as a "real woman" despite everyone doing their best to use the right pronouns.

    At one point she had a go at one of the males because he wouldn't consider her a viable partner.

    Another contestant told her that everyone sees her as a real woman but being completely oblivious to the fact that noone born female is ever reassured by other females "we really do see you as a woman.. Honest". It just isn't done that way.

    That very statement is paradoxical in and of itself and caused further anguish.

    I don't know what the solution to that problem is. But there ain't a short term one.

    Socialising boys and girls the same might be a start, but we're a long way from that.
    Last edited: Jan 13, 2018
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  7. spanglechick

    spanglechick High Empress of Dressing Up

    Yep. The hyperbole from some individuals on both sides is exhausting, irritating, and makes moderate debate impossible.
    bimble, 8ball and comrade spurski like this.
  8. elbows

    elbows WoeTimer

    It's been interesting, I feel like I have learnt some things, even if some of those things are troubling the picture is at least more nuanced.

    I've never been entirely convinced that there are less trans acceptance issues from women than men. This stuff seems to work at numerous different levels and whilst most of the most obvious, loud and even violent non-acceptance comes from men, I dont want to get the wrong idea about whether some potentially fairly widespread exclusionary attitudes are held by plenty of women. It might just be less visible, for reasons including all the usual reasons why womens voices may be drowned out.

    I can understand why some aspects of the whole 'TERF vs' thing might leave some wanting to reclaim labels from negative use, but I really dont get it when it comes to TERF - its an acronym not a word, and I dont understand how it can be reclaimed in a decent and positive way when two of its letters stand for trans-exclusionary.
    smmudge and Rutita1 like this.
  9. Red Cat

    Red Cat Well-Known Member

    What I'd like is a discussion that people can come to without having to know what they think already, without having to provide the 'evidence', and without the framing of others words in terms that act as straightjackets. Otherwise, even when it's relatively polite, it can feel like a competition, not a conversation.
  10. Rutita1

    Rutita1 Scum with no integrity, apparently.

    Well apparently not... :hmm:


    I've had to read this a few times to be honest.
  11. elbows

    elbows WoeTimer

    I can sort of get my head round it and empathise with chunks of it. But it cant escape falling into the realm of 'dangerous conflation' in my book. We're doomed to quagmire if we cant remove the artificial joins between some of these things, just as we are if we dismiss all the parts out of hand because of the way they've been welded together.
  12. 8ball

    8ball Most Ignoreable Poster 2016

    Yep could be. Which says something about how the background culture has moved, perhaps.
  13. Pickman's model

    Pickman's model Every man and every woman is a star

    not surprised, the background's a foul colour
    TopCat and 8ball like this.
  14. 8ball

    8ball Most Ignoreable Poster 2016

    I dunno. It means you can put on a pink tie and boom, you're in.
    I can understand why women feel it undermines their space.
  15. 8ball

    8ball Most Ignoreable Poster 2016

    It could include very young people who might be on an early part of their journey to transitioning. It means trans people are welcome without having to be solidly transitioned. I get your objections, I just see what they're trying to do too. I think.
  16. 8ball

    8ball Most Ignoreable Poster 2016

    I think there is not much talk of trans women because there are much fewer of them and men do not consider them a threat (afaik).
  17. 8ball

    8ball Most Ignoreable Poster 2016

    I'm not aware of having pontificated on what makes a woman at any point, but the "what makes a man" thing currently seems to something also going through a bit of flux, in terms of gender expectations if not in terms of biology.

    However, depending on other factors like socioeconomic bracket, degree of social power etc. I think being a man leaves more options open for breaking rules (albeit some men are threatened by the most minor of rule breaking).

    I was never terribly good at being a typical boy, so I've really felt part of "team bloke". It's fortunate that "team bloke" is optional for men, though. I was once told I must be gay because I didn't like football. :facepalm:

    Not sure whether making this about men could derail things too far...
  18. Magnus McGinty

    Magnus McGinty Wh♂️

    The equivalent would be spaces they’re excluded from (or not) so maybe there’s not a mad dash to join snooty golf clubs or the Freemasons.
  19. 8ball

    8ball Most Ignoreable Poster 2016

    It's a good point. I'm not aware of whether that's actually been tested.

    edit: on Googling it seems it has been tested. Also, there's the case of these people's acceptance or otherwise of trans women who were members before transitioning. I think it's only partly relevant because these are institutions based around excluding people generally in the first place.

    On reflection, considering the case of trans men it does make it feel more personally relevant how a trans man wasn't socialised on "my side of the fence". That fence is pretty high when you're very young. Or it was when I was growing up, anyway.
  20. elbows

    elbows WoeTimer

    I went looking for primitive surveys as a starting point to understanding the scale of this better.

    I've only found one so far, and it was a survey of under 2500 Sky customers a few years back and only asked a couple of rather specific questions. So I'm only using it for initial clues.

    Poll VI tabs - TG.pdf

    To what extent, if at all, do you agree or disagree with the following statements: "Clinical treatment to change a person's gender is morally wrong"

    Agree (combined): Female 14% Male 25%
    Disagree (combined): Female 54% Male 43%
    Neither agree nor disagree: Female 23% Male 27%
    Dont know: Female 2% Male 1%
    Prefer not to say: Female 7% Male 4%

    To what extent, if at all, do you agree or disagree with the following statements: "The NHS should pay for clinical treatment to change a person’s gender where desired by a patient and deemed appropriate by doctors"

    Agree (combined): Female 29% Male 21%
    Disagree (combined): Female 44% Male 60%
    Neither agree nor disagree: Female 18% Male 14%
    Dont know: Female 3% Male 1%
    Prefer not to say: Female 6% Male 3%

    I have simplified these results for the sake of brevity and the full results are also broken down by region, age, political party voting and 'experian mosaic'.
  21. 8ball

    8ball Most Ignoreable Poster 2016

    Oh, I just remembered.

    We had a trans man in work several years ago. The only one I'm aware of having met, as it happens.
    He was a bit eccentric but very likeable and I didn't find out he was a trans man until after he left the company (a very small number at the company knew before this).

    I remember quite a few women being dubious about him for reasons they couldn't put their finger on. Most of the men just thought of him as a funny nutter. Though a lot of men weren't terribly surprised when they found out about his history whereas I was very surprised.
  22. campanula

    campanula plant a seed

    I tend to think that transmen are largely silent having been previously socialised as women, with all the self-effacement, unwillingness to shout out, take up space, be loud and the usual modest, demure compliance...which mitigates against ensuring their demands take precedence. Put such limiting social constraints on people who are already feeling anxious, different, alone...and it is unsurprising that transmen have become a largely invisible presence within the noisy trans rights demands from MtF (who, of course, have not been compromised by a lifetime of deference).
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  23. 8ball

    8ball Most Ignoreable Poster 2016

    Maybe in terms of organising as trans men as a group that makes sense, but doesn't fit the personality of the one trans man I've met. Modest demure, compliance wasn't a big thing for him.

    Not for the majority of women I know either, to be fair.
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  24. campanula

    campanula plant a seed

    It is an ongoing struggle, 8Ball - however much we like to think we have transcended our societal pressures, they are always there...and as a (much) older woman (2nd wave feminist) than many of the media savvy and apparently confident generation (who have never known anything but the neo-liberal consensus), I feel my internal contradictions very keenly. Although given the ever increasing list of psycho-social disorders and dis-ease, I suspect such confidence to be quite literally skin deep and the latent powers of capital are still holding us in obedient thrall.

    Anyway - time to cut and run - the day is slipping away and I need to make my first New year allotment reccie.
  25. Athos

    Athos Well-Known Member

    I agree. I try to do my bit towards the later, with my kids and neices and nephews. But in some respects I feel like we're going the other way. I find that depressing for my daughter's.
  26. Athos

    Athos Well-Known Member

    Purely anecdotally, I get the impression that many women just play along so as not to upset people, rather than being fully on-board (whereas men are socialised less for sensitivity).
  27. Sea Star

    Sea Star Urban 75 = Mumsnet

    speaking as a trans woman, it comes across fairly clearly if some-one in my life still considers me a man and if i can, and they are not evolving to accept me as i am now, i will write them out of my life as much as i can.

    Example is at work where some people knew me before and some didn't. There is a clear difference in how those two groups interact with me. So i favour being with people who didn't know me before. It's why i moved house when i transitioned - and again, the only people i have problems with here are some guys who found out i was trans when i moved here. Everyone else clearly accepts me as a woman.

    I don't care what others think secretly and certainly wouldn't demand that anyone be self aware all the time and moderate behaviour accordingly, but i do expect some effort from those who profess to love or care about me, and to me it's clear that most people now who meet me and don't know my history, clearly see me as a woman, and i don't need to ask anything of any of those people. That's my goal.

    I'm talking about myself here, but as far i can tell, i think most trans men and women would be thinking in a similar way - the ones I've talked to anyway.
  28. SheilaNaGig

    SheilaNaGig Struggling and striving

    I’m sure there’s some truth in this. But I’ve also read/heard trans men saying that they’re much more heard, listened to, able to speak up and be engaged, involved etc, since their transition.
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  29. Sea Star

    Sea Star Urban 75 = Mumsnet

    Wow! I know many trans men and not one fits this description. They are mainly less visible because society finds female to male transition to be more acceptable, masculinity to be more acceptable; TERFs consider them to be victims of the "trans identified male cult" and most of the trans men i know have successfully gone stealth, something i manage but i think it's much harder for trans women to do this for various reasons. Also - as has been said, men don;t find them to be a threat particularly.

    But to say that the trans movement doesn't talk about trans men is ludicrous. For several years now I know for a fact that many of us have been challenging the TERF rhetoric in part by asking why they keep erasing trans men.

    And in the trans community i know many who are in key and prominent positions, very active and very frustrated that they keep getting written out of the "debate" & working for all trans people. We are pretty much united in fact so attempts at divide and rule won't work. I spent 3/4 years mentoring a trans man for example and it was a trans man who was extremely supportive to me when i first joined the Green Party.

    So this does not ring true, remotely.
    Thimble Queen, mojo pixy, CRI and 2 others like this.
  30. Athos

    Athos Well-Known Member

    I suspect it's a variety of reasons, including socialisation, ease of passing, and that they're not considered a threat.
    Last edited: Jan 13, 2018
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