From a comment left here.
I cannot believe I found this site! I’ve been reading the archives for a day and a half now, practically crying with joy that I’m not the only woman in the world who feels this way.
I’m not actually a radical feminist; I’m kind of not really a feminist at all (nor am I Christian). In fact, it never occurred to me that there was anything radical or “fringe” in, for example, thinking, “How do *you* know what being a woman feels like?” when a man claims he’s “felt like a woman all his life.” I never thought it was somehow radical to look back at my life and be insulted that some man who never dealt with any of the issues or situations in life that I or any/most/all other women dealt with thinks he knows what that was like, or in the idea that a woman is a collection of life experiences, feelings, and thoughts and not some sort of doll that is created out of the air. I was born a female; _growing up_ female made me a woman. When Julie Burchill wrote her column a few years ago I was thrilled, only to see other women–friends, some of whom were feminists, some of whom were lesbians, even–denigrating her. I agreed with every word she said.
I’m going to try to keep this short. I don’t want to drown you in words. But a member of my family–my stepfather-in-law–decided about fifteen years ago that he was “really” a woman. He claimed to have gotten tests that “proved” this. The effect it had on my MIL was devastating, not least because he had for years led her to believe that all of their problems, sexual and otherwise, were HER fault. That she was somehow inadequate as a woman, that she was unexciting, that she was too sensitive, that she just didn’t have the brains and sharp killer instincts of a man. Then he decided to be a “woman,” and fully expected her to stay married to him. He was very angry that she refused; what was wrong with her, that she wasn’t supporting him by remaining his wife and letting him stay in their marital home and teaching him how to apply make-up? Did she think she had a right not to be forced into a lesbian marriage (nothing wrong with lesbian marriage, of course, but it’s not really what most hetero women look for) or something?
All of this was infuriating for my husband and myself, as well as the FIL’s two children–his son moved to another country, he was so devastated by this. My FIL didn’t care. He’d run out and gotten himself hormones and told us how he felt so good all the time, almost high, and it was so amazing–it was less than six months after he made the decision and he’d already had the facial feminization surgery. He also decided that he didn’t feel like waiting the two years for the full reassignment surgery, so went to his elderly mother, convinced her to hand over the money that would be his inheritance (money my MIL was supposed to get an equal share of), and ran off to Prague to become a castrato with boobs. He then changed his name to one of the most stereotypical drag queen names you’ve ever heard (hint: it’s the name of a song mentioned in this thread, with a “St. ___” as the last name) and proceeded to meet up online with a bunch of other unsavory delusionists, with whom he’d go clubbing almost every night in full drag-queen-feminine-caricature regalia.
What’s funny–if by “funny” you mean “disgusting”–is that his behavior hasn’t changed one iota. There is nothing feminine about him, nothing womanly. He mansplains; he interrupts; he corrects; he expects my MIL (they have remained friends, and he goes to her place regularly for dinner) to cook for him and clean up after while he snores on her couch; he thinks everyone admires him. He thinks his mutilation and pseudo-woman persona makes him special and interesting.
(In the last year or two his health has begun to fail, and he at least once told my MIL he regrets the surgery. Well, that’s what happens when you decide indulging a sex fetish is going to fix all the things you don’t like about yourself as a person. It’s called gender reassignment surgery, not create-a-whole-new-person surgery. There’s a reason why a 2011 Swedish study found that 40% of post-op transexuals attempt suicide, and 10% of them succeed. Also, all those studies they like to trot out about the brains of M2T transgenders [did I use the term correctly?] being just like those of real women? Not only is that not completely accurate, but those were cadaver brains, the brains of dead post-op post-hormone transgenders. Who’s to say that years of hormones didn’t create those changes?)
It’s very clear to me and has been for years that this whole “woman trapped in a man’s body” thing is either a fetish or a psychological disorder/problem caused by childhood abuse. And I have more to say on that but this is already way too long, for which I apologize. I’m just so excited to finally be able to say this!
Oh, one last quick thing. Years ago I saw this TV documentary on trans surgery. I was absolutely dumbfounded when the post-op M2T mentions how he won’t know how it all turns out until he “pees out of his new vagina.” (Happens @40 minutes in.)
He’s just had surgery to give him a poor facsimile of ladyparts, and he is so ignorant about them that he thinks women urinate through their vaginas. THIS is how irresponsible and neglectful the doctors who “treat” these people are; they have mutilated his genitals without even once sitting him down with a diagram and showing him what a woman’s vulva actually looks like and what the parts of it do. He wants to be a woman–he claims he *is* a woman “inside”–but has so little curiosity, so little interest in the reality of a woman’s body, that he never bothered to learn for himself, either. It’s not like that information isn’t readily available; he just didn’t care enough, it seems, to take a few minutes to see what those genitals he apparently feels so wrong and sick without actually are. Because yeah, no real woman has any interest in what her genitals do. :rolleyes Did he think the doctor was just going to fashion his skin into a sexy unicorn?
Anyway. Sorry for the length, and I hope I haven’t offended or upset you or jumped in where I’m not welcome. I’ve enjoyed everything I’ve read here so much. Thank you for letting me comment and for the stand you’re taking here.