Tag Archives: Personal

A Return to Pushing Personal Boundaries

We all do this. Or at least we try to. I admit it is something I having done much of. After many issues with sexual assault and almost being abducted I withdrew from this idea. The last few months I have been more relaxed with what I like and for once in a log time allowed myself to explore.

The whole idea began with shopping for clothes. Ever since I transitioned I knew one thing was true about myself. I am not a big fan of pants. Sure they have a purpose at times but I much prefer wearing skirts or dresses. Flowing clothes have always been my favorite even when I was young. So it makes sense that sine I began my transition I would experiment with skirts and various other styles of clothes. I would even buy short skirts and mini skirts. Even though I was scared to wear them outside. I would still try them on and wear them around my place free of judgement.

When I started going to college full time I let my ambitions do what they will. Short skirts with and even without leggings. Off the shoulder tops. The stylistic world of clothing was my playground and I loved it. I would enjoy my walks to the bus feeling so free in the clothes I chose. My mp3 player on whatever album I decided to sing along to as I walked.

I would say I was naive to the truth of the worlds ability to react. In truth though I don’t think that was the problem. I like any other women on the planet when they develop their own sense of style wasn’t looking for the worlds reactions. I was looking at just being happy being myself.

As i became more relaxed and content with myself things began to happen. I wore a short sun dress one day to school and a guy pulled over at the bus stop. He asked if i wanted a ride. I smiled and kindly said no. He in turn gave me his business card with his personal number written on it and said i should all him some time. He left and I quickly ignored the exchange.

The next incident was more scary. I had just got off the bus near a department store and began walking towards it. I had needed a new pair of shoes for all the walks I did. No sooner did the bus leave a guy pulled up in the bus stop and honked his cars horn to get my attention. I looked back for a second as he waved me over to his car. This time I was not interested. He clearly was though. He drove his car in to the parking lot and proceeded to follow me up and down the isles trying to get me to listen. With a sigh of relief I finally made it in to a close store. He drove away the moment the glass door closed behind me.

There were worse incidents but I would rather not go in to the dark stuff. Needless to say I was left scared After all this I realized I was always harassed when I was showing more skin. I threw out all my short skirts and closeted all my short dresses. Even my tops became more conservative. I didn’t show any cleavage and walked around in sweaters and hoodies all the time.

What I am glad to say though is I have finally gotten past a lot of my hang ups and emotions about the past. I don’t know if it is because I am older now or maybe I have just let go of the hurt and fear that was once caused. Whatever it was a clearance rack of really cute skirts began my return to wearing more revealing clothing. How does one pass up adorable lace skirts for 2 dollars clearance? You just don’t. lol. I even wear them again. A lot of the short dresses have returned as well.

As I was saying earlier last weekend held something very special for me. I have worn some revealing clothing before. Nothing that showed a lot but just short clothes. Last weekend I took a plunge that terrified me. It shouldn’t have. I was going through my closet and happened across a really cute lavender top that had sequins covering the breasts. I looked at it a moment and asked why don’t I wear this more? Sure the neckline is kind of low but it is really pretty. I put it on and walked to the mirror.

My reflection took no time at all to show me why I had not worn the top before. Everything below the breasts and completely down the back was totally sheer. My belly and back were completely exposed. I could feel myself get a little embarrassed seeing my belly button through the stomach of the top. My hips were clear as day and the slight bulge of my stomach was there for the world to see. In a weird twist though I couldn’t decide if I looked really cute or if fear was going to make me rip it off.

After a few more moments of internal arguing I decided to wear it. After all either I start wearing it or get rid of it. Why own something you wont wear? I found a Basic flowy black skirt to go with it and put my make up on for the day. Deciding I wasn’t quite that ready for so much flesh to be shown I pulled a black lace wrap from my closet and put it on. It covered my back just enough so it wasn’t totally obvious. My stomach on the other hand was as clear as day.

As I locked my apartment I headed down the stars in the early noon sun. There was a bit of a breeze that loved playing with my skirt and top. They fluttered so gently and happily with the current. It felt so nice. I made my rounds for the day stopping at my usual weekend haunts. The day went on and I finally started my way home. Sitting in my car I realized I had forgotten I was wearing the sheer top. The day took me where it would and let me relax to the point it didn’t bother me.

There was no harassment like before. I didn’t feel scared or worried. I never felt that fear that used to urged me to cover up after I got hurt. Just a nice peaceful fall day. I got some smiles but nothing beyond that. I beamed the whole way home. I was so happy. I didn’t want to take the top off when I got home. Instead I just kicked the skirt off and left the top on to cover me. The little that it did.

Pain can be recovered from. I would like to say all scars heal but I know some are still there. That would be fooling myself, but last weekend helped me reclaim something i had lost almost a decade ago. Part of the freedom to be me. Since then my mind has raced with outfit ideas that I want to try. Something that hasn’t happened since i was first coming out. More to come. ūüôā

A question left to the bygone days of pop culture news coverage.

Life can be quite funny. Especially when you realize everything runs in trends. What will be relevant one moment and mean the world to some will fall silent as if time itself says you had enough. I have seen this happen many times to many different subjects over the decades. However, now we are left with a passed topic that was not only popular, but affects a small portion of the world, myself included.

If you haven’t figured it out yet I am talking about the great bathroom debate of 2016. What was once daily being spoken of from both sides and found its way in to many governing offices has now gone silent. Understandably so. With the riotous and extremely scary circus that has become our presidential debate how could the eyes of the populous not move to them.

Yet this time it has left a nagging issue for those of us who had our fates being determined by our precious political system. The basic right to use the restroom peacefully is still a question. Will we be arrested if we use the restroom? Will we face recourse from the public for simply answering natures call?

No answers. Just like before. Only this time legal actions have been taken in some places. So thanks to the popularity train no answers were widely reached. The country with the motto liberty and justice for all forgot to tell us that it only happens if the populous cares long enough to make a decision.

This is honestly both a good thing and a bad thing. At least from where I sit. On the positive side there are many states that didn’t bother with the popular debate. They sat quietly allowing people to deal with the issue as it arises. Essentially it is down to the people involved. That is if it even becomes an issue. In this thought alone I feel the loss of the countries eye has been a good thing, but to believe it would be this simple would lead to complete naivete on my own part.

For lack of better term they threw down the gauntlet then walked away. I can’t speak for other but this worries me. Probably more so than if they had actually won in the courts. They bullied Target in to taking back its own ruling. All because of the fear of rape from straight perverts. The opponents of our rights used straight rapists and our children to scare a world in to thinking basically we are dangerous.

What is more perplexing is what the country is also talking about right now. Elitists kids raping women and getting slaps on the wrists for it. I laughed at myself as I watched these events unfolding. All I could think was no wonder people fear the trans community. Rapists get nothing and the poor women who are assaulted are left to pick up the pieces. What kind of justice is that? It actually makes me understand the fear the country has created around people like myself.

After all any man can put on a dress and some make up, claim to be one of us and enter a restroom. Hell the idea of a man in the women’s restroom scares me as well. I understand the idea of safe space really well. There have been times I have found solace in a public restroom from not so lucky encounters.

Then comes the harder thoughts. I have been assaulted. I have had my clothes unwillingly ripped off my body. I have been raped. I went in to a lost state after I realized I could tell no one and trying to cope with my own physical and mental issues lead me to a very depressed state. I tried calling a rape crisis line. I was met with a CIS gender only policy. Family hadn’t been the most accepting of who I am so they were of no help.

So here in lies the problem as far as I can see it. My worth means nothing to this country because I am trans. I get no rights. Or maybe I should say I am not awarded the niceties of our culture because others have lumped trans people like me in with the worst of our species. I would say I get no justice but if CIS women can’t get the help they deserve then I know I am on my own. Even in my stealth a doctor will eventually discover what is underneath. Considering what I have dealt with in regards to this issue over the years staying silent is the only thing I could do. My physical pain healed years ago. I like to think I do pretty good mentally.

My apologies. I am a bit off topic. While it is relevant to my particular case, it doesn’t move the issue along. It is a battle cry I have said many times before. More so over the last year watching rape case after rape case where the attackers are set free. If you violate another human being then you don’t deserve these things. We need more harsh punishments for people (of all genders) who do such heinous acts to anyone. No one should have to go through that. I wouldn’t wish it on my worst enemy.

So yeah. Bathrooms. My right to pee scares me because I don’t know what my rights are. As a born citizen of this country that scares the crap out of me. I essentially have no real secure rights or protections. Can’t go in women’s restrooms because if I am discovered they can fear I will rape them. Cant go in men’s restrooms because I fear rape myself. Never mind the fact I do not look like a man. Thanks to the attention span of the press and the modern culture trans lives across the country are now left in a heated climate to sort out for themselves what is safe and what isn’t. Kind of like before. But now there is severe animosity.

What I think is actually worse than the bathroom debate not being finished is the cold hard truth the recent news has shown us. Rapists will rape. Whether the world thinks they have access to bathrooms or not. If they want to they will. We are certainly seeing that. So what was really gained by all the fear-mongering over the bathroom debate?

I wish I could leave this post on a happier note. I wish I could say the lack of news or public eye makes it easier, it doesn’t. Keep our brothers and sisters in your thoughts when going in to a restroom. Remember the ease of which you can go freely. No recourse. No hassle. It is a natural right and freedom I don’t share.One that many like me will keep others from living their lives the way everyone else gets to.

Is it ok to have friends from before you transitioned?

For those who have transitioned I think this is a question we all asked at one point or another. As one grows in to who they are born to be you learn more about those who have been there not only from the beginning, but possibly further back beyond that.

I remember when i started to live full time. Most of the people around me were new to my life and only really knew me as me. There were a few who had been around before. Coming out can harbor feelings on all sides of life. I remember one friend saying he missed the old me. I didn’t really understand this remark. I was still me. Same likes and same attitude. He just saw something I didn’t.

Probably the most eye opening came with my best friend during my coming out. She was a dear friend of mine and helped me overcome a lot of my fears. She was completely supportive. We would go to gay bars together and dance our nights away and have a great time. Something changes though over the few years since my coming out I did not expect.

I decided to go back to school so I enrolled in the local college. This was a pretty big step for me considering it was not only the first place no one would know my old self but it was the first real time I stepped out without my best friend.

The experience was so awakening. I made sure to protect my secret and be who i was at all times. It was probably the happiest I had been in years. I made many friends at school. We would hang out between classes or during assignments we had in common. No one questioned me. Everyone just saw me for who I was. At least it was this way at school.

My best friend on the other hand had become more estranged to me. I was happy to see her and go out like we used to but it had changed. I could see the difference in how she treated me while knowing everything as opposed to those at school who knew me as me. I could tell my best friend still held back with things and had even become condescending with me.

The longer I allowed myself to grow at school the more I realized how bad things were with my best friend. I could go in to various other reasons that things became bad but they aren’t part of this point. The realization she treated me like she did was very disappointing.

Due to many reasons along with this one we parted ways as friends. Something i have seen happen with a lot of those I knew before I transitioned. The ones I have left are probably the oldest of friends I have. One goes back to high school. One was even a girl who had a crush on me in first grade. Which also leads to another funny note.

I am friends with three of my exes from before I transitioned. Every one of them had the same thing to say when I came out to them. They all said I love you but I’m not in to that. Did they think it was supposed to be a way to endear myself to them? lol. I have no clue but it was pretty funny they felt they had to say it.

My answer to is it okay? Yes, I think it is just fine. You will get used to the two different ways people will treat you. There will always be a huge difference between those who knew you before and those who don’t. Much like with those who have to decide if they can take who we are. We will have to decide if how they treat us is good for us. I know this sounds like a bad Disney saying but if they are true then they will be there forever.

What makes terms like lifestyle good or bad?

Merriam-Webster Dictionary defines a lifestyle as such.

:the typical way of life of an individual, group, or culture

In its purest of forms this make people calling how LGBT people live a lifestyle correct. BUT, one thing they are forgetting is that we do not refer to the heterosexual way of life as a lifestyle. We do not refer to it as a choice. It is just what they do. This is why the word has garnered such a bad reputation among the LGBT population.

There are plenty of words that have been used to describe LGBT people. Most of which are no longer acceptable to say despite their more traditional meanings. Calling some one gay in a derogatory manner is frowned upon. Yet no one remembers what its original meaning is. The same is said for the word queer. The word simply meant happy. It still does. No one complained about the film Nightmare Before Christmas when Jack Skelington sang the words ‘how queer”.

The song described Jacks new experiences in Christmas town. Its use of the word queer came from the more traditional definition so the audience had very little to complain about. Now had he said it about another character in the film I am sure it would have taken on a completely different meaning.

On the opposite end of this is the Green Day song American Idiot where the song used the line “maybe I’m the faggot america”. This caused an uproar and forced the song to be censored without even knowing the meaning of the lyrics. The following line in the song is “I’m not a part of the redneck agenda”. A very provocative statement. Especially in this era where the conservative movement has pushed harder to deny LGBT rights.The use of the word was all anyone heard. It was enough for an uproar. At least for those who are incapable of looking at the bigger picture.

The worse use I can remember over the last decade has been in some of my favorite films. I love watching Kevin Smith films. From Clerks all the way to Jay and Silent Bob Strike Back. These are great classic comedies that talked a lot about the culture at the time and often poked fun at it. Jay and Silent Bob Strike back had one joke though that pointed out a very dark look at his films for me. In it a female bad guy does something that is considered weird or abnormal. Her friend¬†turns to her and simply says “you are so gay”.

As funny as his films are they quite often have very derogatory views on the LGBT community. I do excuse Chasing Amy from this because of the many LGBT issues and messages it gets across, but this only furthers my confusion when I think about it. The earlier films were a voice of their time. The early 90s were full of this kind of talk. By the turn of the decade though things were not so crude. So it made the comment in Jay and Silent Bob very uncomfortable.

Another great point of how those who aren’t labeled by the terms is when actor John Barrowman defended his use of the term tranny. In his opinion the trangendered people of the world should quit whining and be okay with the term. Yet I can only imagine how angry he would feel if he was casually referred to as a faggot and told to accept it because that is what he is to some people. He of anyone should have known better. The power of labels can be hurtful.

So why do I bring all this up you ask? As much as I would like to say I have a simple point I do not.The use of the word lifestyle in our current culture carries one meaning when regarding the LGBT community. It is a way for those who don’t understand LGBT people to understand what they consider to be a choice. This is the only answer I can think of that makes sense and this answer makes the term very unhealthy.

This version of the word has been around for a while. It was further re enforced to me over the weekend when a family member was talking about how she knows gay people and a gay friend was offended when she referred his lifestyle. She felt he was being to sensitive. I even told her as an example what if he was to refer to your religious views as a lifestyle. Yet she pointed out how its not a lifestyle and kept on saying how people are too sensitive.

Like I said earlier. No one refers to heterosexuality as a choice. We don’t refer to being human as a choice. We don’t even refer to ones religion as a lifestyle choice even though people chose which religion they believe in. So why should we hear about our “lifestyle” when it is¬†naturally¬†who we are?

What I personally hear when I hear my life being referred to as a lifestyle is that I have chosen a fetish that I live unhealthily. When I came out my sisters response was “that’s fine just keep it in the bedroom”. Like it was some sort of turn on. This opens up to a much bigger conversation for a later time. For now I want to stick to the issue at hand.

If you feel I missed the mark or see things differently please feel free to comment. I would love to talk about this.

Traveling when Trans

With this mornings upsetting news about North Carolina. I want to share my thoughts on the subject of traveling while being transgender. I have traveled quite a bit as I have both transitioned and lived my life as the woman I always was. I don’t think this is a topic many people think about when stuff like Indiana and North Carolina happen. Before i start I want to include Georgia in the list of states that are making headlines for creating such oppressive laws.

I have traveled to many states over the last ten years. It is something that can be exhilarating and quite scary at the same time. Traveling while trans however makes what can already be a unsure situation absolutely scary.

I would like to start with a trip I took about seven years ago to Arizona. I was travelling with a friend to meet up with a friend of hers who had moved there a few years prior. The traveling wasn’t much of an issue. We did our usual routine of listening to music and talking about who knows what. The last thing on my mind at the time was what people might have thought about me. That is how it should be.

To say the least Arizona was a nightmare publicly. I have yet to be in another state that made me feel as awkward as that one. People there have no problem giving stares at anyone they don’t feel is right. After we met up with her friend we decided to go out for the night and enjoy ourselves. We stopped and grabbed some food first. They were busy catching up so it allowed me to eat and just kind of hang out. I would join the conversation if I had something to say but otherwise I left them to it.

After dinner we went from bar to bar trying to find anything going on. This is where things fell apart completely for me. When a bar is involved the standard needing proof of identification comes in to play. The dread was felt every place we went as I saw the unpleasant faces of those who would look at me and read my I.D.. The last bar was the worst. The bouncers were police officers. One would think this would be a good thing. I am sure they do a good job of making sure nothing happens at the clubs. The look on the cop at the doors face when he saw me said it all. I was not welcome there. They made sure I knew it as well.

As my friend and her friend went in in front of me I waited for the cop to check out my I.D.. With a scowl now on his face he silently handed me my card and waved me in. Had that been the end of it I could have dealt with the insecurity of it. A quick glance behind me revealed he had waved a second cop over and was talking about me. Both of them had their eyes glued to me as they spoke. They didn’t hide it in the least.

Quickly I caught up with my friend hoping I would be left alone with people around me. They asked if I wanted a drink. I graciously refused knowing that would inevitably lead to needing to use the restroom. If those cops were still watching me there was no way they would let me go to the bathroom peacefully.

A moment of curiosity washed over me as I was trying to be sure things were as they seemed. I excused myself from the table and tried to find a place to stand where I could see the live band playing from. Everywhere i went i could see the blue shadow of a uniformed officer. His uniform was almost black against the dimly lit club. The stage lights made him stand out. Realizing there was a upstairs with a balcony to see the stage from I went up the steps.

To do so I had to pass the main door again. the cop at the door watched as I passed. I could see him nod to my follower as he rounded the steps to proceed upstairs as well. My heart was pounding at this point. My friend hadn’t noticed a thing the whole time. I don’t think she even saw me go upstairs. If something happened then to her I would have just disappeared.

The upstairs balcony was pretty empty. I remember I started to panic at the lack of patrons up stairs. If the cop wanted he could have easily made my night a nightmare then and there. I walked up to the balcony overlooking the stage. In the weird design of the club I laughed realizing the band was so far back their heads were cut off by the front of the ceiling.

Even though I couldn’t see them properly I stood there a few moments. I could feel the cops eyes on me the whole time. After a few minutes I looked around the upstairs area. There were three people sitting at a table on the far side. Beyond them it was just the cop and I.

Terror was getting the better of me. Worse yet it was making me have to go to the bathroom. All that pressure on my bladder was having a very negative effect. Deciding I couldn’t take it anymore I came up with a plan to leave upstairs. It was probably more than I needed to do but I wanted the cop to realize I was aware he was following me.

I turned around and walked straight to him. The moment I faced him he tried to focus else ware but I knew better. I walked up to him and smiled as much as my terrified body could. I asked him if there was a proper place from where I could see the show. His look said it all once again. The fact I was even talking to him disgusted him. Without saying a word he shook his head no.

I smiled even wider and said thanks. I excused myself back down stairs as fast as I could without looking like I was trying to run. I made it back to my friend who was still chatting with her friend. He was waiting for something to catch me on. if i was lucky that was all he was doing. Even then I could imagine far worse things than a false arrest. I saw him come downstairs a few minutes after I did.

Needless to say I didn’t use the restroom till we got back to her friends house. By then the pain was unbearable. Every stabbing pain in my stomach reminded me of the fear that the night had given me. We couldn’t leave to go home fast enough. I never said a word though. I wasn’t about to ruin her trip because of this. I did tell her after we got back but that was it.

I share this memory as a look inside what it is like to travel as a trans person. To say the least I get nervous when the idea of traveling becomes an option. Thoughts of what the people are like, are they super judgmental? I do love to travel, but with the climate the way it is for LGBT people I cant see myself doing so that much. I am proud of the large companies who take stances against these barbaric laws. They have so far been the biggest road block for such bills.

All these fears happen every time I travel. I wish I had something more witty to end with but this cold hard truth is all I have. I may be brave and travel, but the truth is I am aware each state comes with its own set of rules and regulations for people like me. I can tell you this for sure. I have a list of states I will never set foot in again. At the top? Arizona.

Stealth Trans Dating

“Update” I am adding this update while laughing about it. I feel I should mention I am in no way a relationship expert (no such thing). I am not a professional in really any field. lol. This is all just my persons opinions and views.

This is a subject I used to wrestle with. What makes it worse is there are no clear answers and what is right and wrong can change depending on the scenario. What can be right with one person will be totally wrong with the next. That is to be expected no matter who you are.

The title of this post pretty much asks the main question right away. As a stealth transgender person how do you approach the subject with a potential partner. Their are no right answers. I have been both upfront with potential partners from the past as well as I withheld it till I was comfortable. Both ways have wielded positive and negative results.

I think the best answer I have to give for this question is get to know who you are talking to. We live in a wonderful era of the internet and talking to some one for a while before meeting them is quite common. I have met many people over the years over the internet and then in person. It is a great way to get to know some one and learn what red flags are there.

When I was younger I used to think things would just click when I met some one and I would fall in love and be happy. I thought the idea of putting restrictions and personal wants in the mix of finding a potential partner would restrict my search and possibly deny me the love I sought. From what I experienced I was completely backwards in thinking. By not having thoughts of what would make me happy in a relationship I opened myself up to let down and even emotional/physical abuse at the hands of those I thought I loved.

Is it wrong to keep this kind of secret from some one? That depends on the situation. If you are just talking with some one and everything is casual then what harm is there? However, if you are already flirtatious and things are starting to get heated then it may be time to discuss this. The longer you go with a potential partner without telling them then the more likely it will end in distrust and disaster. If you are both already talking and thinking of things in a more intimate nature then it’s safe to say you trust each other enough to wish to actually be physical. Don’t let something like this actually break that already built trust.

How many dates is okay before you tell them? This is another one up for debate. Naturally the sooner you tell some one the more relaxed you will feel. There is a stress lifted when your partner knows the everything about you. (This comes from my personal experience). My answer is almost the same as the last question. If you can tell things are going really well and a bond is forming then it might be time to tell them.

I know by now there will be some straight people who feel i am advocating for other trans to “lie” to potential partners. This is one of those interesting points you hear about from those who don’t trust the trans community. I understand their point. That being said, it is not a lie. Men don’t walk up to women and start a conversation with i have an eight inch dick uncircumcised. Women don’t meet a man and go here is my cup size and I have extremely large Labia. If they do then I would have to question their interest in a regular relationship anyways.

Trans people are not lying to you. They are not coercing you in to something you wouldn’t normally chose. You have every right to say that you are not interested when the time comes. If the time comes. This particular issue always reminds me of that old joke that straight people never want to think about dating the same sex but quite often will gloat that their same gender counterparts think they are attractive. A mentality I think I can gladly say I do not understand.

One key think I feel is important is don’t feel obligated to tell everyone you go out with right away. If you feel the issue is that detrimental to the situation then I would have to ask if that is a relationship that can flourish at all. If you have real reason to doubt the potential partner then it is a bad situation to begin with. Though we live in better times now. There are still lots of people who aren’t okay with trans people. This is the number one reason to be aware of the people you are interacting with.

There is also the possibility that you will meet the person and there will be no sparks. Sure your casual conversation is good but it’s more of a friend type situation. If they are better a better friend than a partner then there need to know your personal details is not there. Especially if you are stealth. Now if they become a close friend (I am still referring to a non sexual relationship) you might consider telling them. Depends on how comfortable and close you become. I have many friends I have never told.

I share these personal feelings on the subject because there are many times in recorded past that people who are trans have met with grim fates because of coming out to potential partners. While the grim side of it falls mostly to Trans Women who date Men, it be an issue for all other sides as well.

I am sure by reading this far you have already figured out what I am about to say but the key is to get to know who you are dealing with. I know as a trans person in this world, it can feel like meeting anyone who doesn’t see you as a fetish or a freak can seem daunting. At least that was a good portion of the people I met back when I was actually dating. Those kind of people are not worth your time.

Allow me a cliche of an ending here but it is 100% true. To all my trans brothers and sisters. Never feel bad about who you are. If some one else can’t deal with it then they are not worth your time. Find some one who makes you feel like the wonderful individuals you are. Be loved and be happy.

A Question from the Depths of the Non Educated

One memory that has popped up time and time again since starting this blog is from the early days when I wasn’t so passable. It was an instance as pivotal to me as the day i realized being transgender doesn’t mean I have to like men. It’s a memory that reminds me so few people really take the time to think about all the different types of people there are out there.

The memory starts as a few friends and I leave a department store. We had a lot of free time those days and often spent them traveling from one random location to the next. It was a fun way to just get out and live without taking a huge and expensive trip. None of us had any money so it was the bus or nothing. There was a new person with us that day. One of my dear friends friends. He was your average late teen emo looking kid with the personality to match.

We were walking from the department store to a adjoining video game store to see what kind of games they carried. During the walk there were many questions regarding why I was transgender and how I felt about different things. At the time this was quite commonplace. It was becoming pretty commonplace to hear a plethora of questions from curious parties. Though even at the time i wanted to be stealth. I knew it was better for me to be open since it was something I didn’t really have an option with.

The others stepped away for a moment trying to find another friend who was meeting us there. I stood there with my friends friend as he continued his questions. When he saw the others walk away he leaned in and whispered a question that stuck with me even to this day.

“Admit it. You are like this for the girl on girl action aren’t you.” He was smiling at the thought of my answer. I could see he was expecting me to join him in this odd male fantasy.

The question immediately made me mad. It was one of the worst and most judgmental questions I had ever been asked. It honestly took me by surprise. How does one answer such a pig headed remark? Worse yet was the idea I didn’t want to be rude. I welcomed the questions up till that point but this was to far.

In the end I let out a sigh and proceeded to explain so his horn dog of a mind could understand. Sex does not interest me. It never really has. For me it is all about the mental connection between two people.

I even went further explaining how I was not comfortable with my parts nor did I really like using them. His face said it all. I had to work to keep from laughing at his clear shock. I don’t think he had ever heard anyone say those kinds of things before.

“Then how do you? “he asked trying to wrap his mind around the answers.

I smiled and raised one hand in front of him letting my fingers dance in the wind. With that I saw the others coming back and moved on to the game store. It took them a while to catch up to me afterwards. No doubt they discussed what I said. I stood in the store looking at the games smiling. I had only told a few people that before and they were the closest friends I had at the time.

They joined me in the store and no one spoke of it. At least not till later when my good friend told me how I blew his mind. She already knew this so it was funny to her as well.

It is pretty funny. The assumptions people can make about one another. We presume so much about the people around us just by physical appearance. I honestly don’t think he knew anything about transgender people. His mind could only comprehend the male properties of it all.

This was the only time a question like this was asked of me. To be honest I am kind of glad he did. When he asked I tried to see his side of it. The physical nature of who we are was never that important to me. More so after that question. It allowed me to question myself and understand myself more.

Stealth in Games

While I know video games are not always a favorite subject for many people. They are a big part of my life. I have played them since the days of the Atari 2600. I currently play on the Playstation 4. For me, video games have surpassed the ability of our bloated film industry and still entertain with good characters and creative stories. As long as you stay away from the repetitive franchises.

When we wee younger it didn’t matter who you are. Anyone could pick up a controller and join a game. So when I tried to learn about the world of modern gaming and make friends I was shocked to see how things have changed. What was a fun and relaxing way to spend free time has become a segregated, elitist and circle driven genre.

What is even more bizarre is the belief that women don’t play video games. The numbers are probably five men to every one woman when counting the genders of those who game. It might even be higher, but to say women don’t game is completely invalid. So is it any surprise that LGBT video game players are even further down in the numbers. At least publicly.

I tried my hand at online gaming years ago when the start of the X-Box generation began. Halo 2 was a pretty solid online experience and often lots of fun. Though I played mostly with family and the ability to chat with other players wasn’t there at the time. It wasn’t till Left 4 Dead came out on the X Box 360 that I began to see the truth.Those who play online were often rude and judgmental. A lot of CIS women I knew were being told they sound like children and not women. They were treated as if they didn’t know how to game at all. Often subjected to the most inappropriate comments.

Knowing this was how people online were treating others made me really scared to even try it. My first attempt at  Left 4 Dead on X Box 360 pretty much set the pace for most online interactions. I decided to just go for it. The game was new to me but a lot of fun. It took less than five minutes before I heard the rude comments begin. I left my microphone muted for fear of being judged. I could hear them saying things like stupid girl thinks she can game. It only went on for a few minutes before they decided to kick me out of the game itself.

After that I pretty much ignored the online gaming world. The mentality of most of them was far beyond sophomoric. I have tried the occasional game since and had mixed results. Destiny was often just those who want to flirt with the women players they come across. Titanfall was actually the best when it came to lack of abusive comments. It is to bad the game was so short and lost its appeal real fast.

I used to think it was me. I just didn’t fit in with what the modern video game culture had become. After dealing with it for a while I began to realize this was a really good thing. I preferred games with intricate characters and stories. No online experience ever gave this to me.

And then there was the fact I was stealth. No one I spoke to knew the secret I kept to myself. I was treated as any other woman in the gaming world. Which is what I wanted. After all that is who I am. This tend to make things worse though. I got to see how people were treated. I got to see how women and LGBT were treated and I can honestly say about 70% of the time it wasn’t pretty. Narcissism, over opinionated and judgmental people run rampant. Especially if you happen to beat them at a few rounds.

I love video games. I really do. But it can be really rough for anyone who doesn’t subscribe to the Stone Cold Steve Austin mentality on life. Finding like minded people is crucial. I have met some wonderful people as well as complete jerks.

What makes it harder is the idea of subsets of already segregated groups. In many ways I cant blame them, but I have seen lesbian groups kick any gay men or trans women out because they believe its wrong for them to be there. I have also seen this happen in straight groups as well. Being stealth in these situations has lead to me leaving groups because I cant believe how jaded and hypocritical they can be. I still look for good groups of friends to game with. Inclusive worlds are few and far between.

If I was to offer advice to those looking for friends in the video game world I would say this. Be picky. It is your right to only have those around who you feel are good people. The rest will pull you down. Then again this is a good thing to follow in life in general.

Only thing to fear is fear itself, And Snakes

I am literally writing this just a few moments after I wake up. My hands are still trembling and I can feel my nerves on end over it. Our dreams should comfort us. Then again I don’t have the Best track record of that when I am sick.

I like to think I keep a good control on my nerves and fears. It is something I have to do on almost a daily basis. I have forced myself through many situations and grown much better as a person for it. So I hope that gives you an idea of how I try to deal with things when I say I absolutely cannot stand snakes. I don’t think they are gross looking and I don’t think of them as evil. I don’t even really believe in the concept of evil but that is for another time I think.

They petrify me to my core. The idea of being near one makes my body want to find the quickest way out it can. There are no awww they are cute moments. Recognizing one near me means instead internal fear. I can’t even say it is a fear I am proud of because it happens whether I think about it or not. I have been this way my entire life. I remember many nights as a child that I would end up wetting myself because I was to scared of snakes in the hallway to go to the bathroom.

So why do I say all this? Because last night hurt. My dream was non stop torture not only by the creature in question but by some one I love. At one point a snake was even thrown on me in my dream. I could feel it moving around as I tried to get away. My panic agitating the creature and making it hiss and want to strike. Hearing the laugh of the loved one as they watch me try to squirm free. This is the kind of stuff I don’t wake up easy from.

Very rarely can I read my own dreams. I cant imagine putting to much stock in to them while I am sick. If I did I could only imagine the meanings of half of them. Reading dreams is something I generally only do for other people. I have been really good at it in the past. Even told a girl she was pregnant before she knew. All because of a dream she shared with me.

This dream was basic. It was about fear. Snakes have always represented the worst to me. Mainly because of the fear I have of them. Having some one I love tossing them at me? Simple, I am unsure about things and have my guard up. I am trying to protect myself. Which I eventually did in the dream. I did by putting my phone on the agitated snakes head. The phone has a little weight to it so the creature had trouble moving about. This gave me time to get away. I escaped by myself. My phone being a clear answer of support. An easy life line if you will.

The hardest part of the dream (besides the snakes) was the loved one. They giggled as I panicked and eventually squirmed free. Then walked with me out of where we were. I was shaken but still walking with them. Basic fear of being hurt. and given my emotions as of recent I am not surprised at all this would happen in my dreams. Just wish it was easier. Snakes take a lot out of me. I will never understand the total fear that takes me over. How can I? After all, it is on the subconscious level.

I am scared of being hurt. In the end aren’t we all? After all we all take chances that can either change things for the better or hurt us. It is kind of a part of life. One thing I can say is even as much as I hate snakes they have never stopped me from going after what I want in life. Go big or go home is a saying that comes to mind. One I personally believe in. You should always pursue your goals and dreams. No matter the obstacle or threat.

Stealth Trans in the Workplace

Spent this morning applying for jobs. Something that always gives me great unease. After my experience with Wal-Mart and their homphobic ways I have honestly been scared to try this again. Then again applying for a job is scary for pretty much anyone. Knowing they can mess with you once you work for them makes it harder. This is what Wal-Mart did.

Not to say the other companies would do such a thing. In fact a few of them I applied to had sections that talked about inclusive nature. This made me feel a lot better. But I can’t help worry about what will happen when I get there. I know there is a big if I even get the job included on that. lol. Maybe I should share the backstory of what happened to show where my timid nature about work came from.

I had to leave a job I really liked because they just weren’t able to give me the hours I needed. I was stepping out in to a personal business venture and needed specific time. They weren’t able to give me what I needed so I left them with a mutual happiness on both sides. It just didn’t work out.

I applied for Wal-Mart hoping they would be able to work with the hours I needed. They did so happily and welcomed me aboard. Seeing this was almost a decade ago times were a bit different. Their immediate concern was which bathroom I used. I understood their concerns even though it essentially treated me like a predator. We came to the agreement i would use the family restroom in the back of the store. I honestly had no problem with this. It wouldn’t give anything away about me and the family bathrooms always have extra space so you don’t feel so cramped.

Everything started off okay. I was given my job and the first day went real well. Then the second day hit and the family bathroom was locked at night. I didn’t need to go so badly and I managed to make it through the night without having to go. The following night not only was the bathroom locked but a bench was placed in front of it. Unable to contain myself a second night I excused myself to the ladies restroom. In and out real quick and right back to work. At least that is what I thought.

I was called in the office the next day by management for using the women’s restroom. I explained the situation and was told I was not to do that. While becoming more apprehensive about the work environment I went back to it stocking shelves. The family restroom was never unlocked during my shift again. I tried to manage but got in trouble again. Same thing and same warning. Another night I decided to be proper about the situation and actually went to my boss telling him I had to pee.

My boss walks with me to the back of the store¬†and proceeds to hold the men’s room door open. He checks for anyone inside and waves me in once he feels it is clear. Horrified I stood there looking at him with his hands beckoning me to the restroom. I decided I could wait. I clearly had bigger issues at hand. I avoided going to the bathroom that day as well even though I could feel the pain in my bladder swelling.

The next day I was called in to the office by all the shift managers and been told I was seen using the women’s restroom again. I knew at this point that I had not and this was no longer a safe place for me. Trying to keep myself together I explained to them I had not used the restroom and was complying with their requests. After they filled their satisfaction¬†of scolding me was finished I went back to work petrified to do anything.

Realizing I was about to collapse in tears and break down I counted down the time till I could log out for lunch. I couldn’t keep it up. It was clear this wasn’t going to be safe for me. Remembering they had already broken the verbal agreement my anger grew. In a last moment of control I went back to my locker to collect my things and walked out. They say the worse thing you could do is walk off your job with no notification. I couldn’t see any other option. Fear had taken me to the point of severe panic.

There are no buses after midnight. The walk home took hours but at least the roads were empty. Walking alone at night has proved dangerous before but the options were gone. I couldn’t stay at work and wait for the buses to start back. At least i can say I had plenty of time to myself to reflect and grow. You would be amazed how much one can think about when you have that much free time on your hands.

Was I proud I did it? Absolutely. There was no way I could maintain my health working in that environment. The sky was clear and the air was crisp. I remember because I could feel the tears chilling my face with the soft breeze. Did it scare me to not be working. You have no idea. I had no clue what my next move was. I just knew it had to be done.

Welcome to why I am scared of jobs. I have had good ones. But most of them were before I lived full time. Afterwards has lead to judgment, ridicule, and flat out harassment. So it is with deep trepidation that I sent out the new batch of applications today. I know a lot has changed since then but I also know prejudice in individuals (especially of those of power) reigns in large corporations to big to see what happens on the ground floor. Just like everyone else I have to work it out. I can’t not live.

I don’t want to leave this on a negative note. That was not my intent. I only wish to show the fear that is within all of us when it comes to what should be one of the simplest things to do. I am optimistic about finding work. Even if I am scared. I would love to have that kind of routine again. I just have to find a place that doesn’t see being Trans as anything other than something that is best left in my application and record. lol.