V for Ventilate

“Ventilate: (verb) (used without object) to give utterance or expression to one’s emotions, opinions, complaints, etc.”

What an exciting, yet aggravating morning it has been! I didn’t sleep well last night after reading about Minnesota’s attempt to change their constitution to make marriage defined as one man and one woman. You can actually watch the entire committee meeting (Civil Law Committee) here. I warn you, it is long but if you skip around a bit you found some truly wonderful arguments FOR Gay Marriage. This measure passed and is now in the ‘Ways and Means’ committee today. If you live in MN you may want to go have a listen. It starts at 6pm.

I hope you will forgive this post because honestly, today, in lieu of the post I had been working on, I felt the need to vent some things I have been feeling and just haven’t dedicated any time to expressing. Luckily, this coincides with my expected post of the LGBT community at large.

I have received a lot of help from the LGBT community in Washington State. Mainly this help has come from Seattle Counseling Services(SCS) in Seattle, WA. I have lived in many states in my life and have been searching for help in my transition since 2003, even though I didn’t actually start till 2007, and SCS has been a Godsend. Anyone who lives in Washington who is “T” should seek them out.

I have read harsh reports of other LGB”T” community centers that actually make someone who is Transsexual or Transgendered feel uncomfortable or flat out unwanted. Not this place. Washington is one of the few places I felt safe to transition and receive not only help with my mental growth as someone struggling with being born TS, but excellent medical services from Doctors in medical clinics who actually specialize in Hormone therapy and dealing with Transsexuals daily. I know that without my time spent in Washington I would not be the Woman I am today.

This being said, Seattle is certainly not a “Mecca” for us. Their community also has the issues of not being inclusive to to those of us who are Trans.  Though the issues are few and far between, I remember well looking through a guide for the community and finding few places that offered services to people who are TS.

The fact is, we really are not apart of their community but instead “overlap”. Some people who are TS are Lesbian, Bi, or Gay. But also there are some of us who just want to transition, get on with our lives, marry, or simply go somewhere to start fresh as the gender we were suppose to have been from the beginning. I read a post, asking why TS and TG people are so Transient. I ask you read my post on V for Vagrant for more insight into my feelings on this.

At the end of the day, post after post, article after article, what do you see? It mostly focus’ on Gay rights. There are certainly those out there who further our cause for equality but mostly, we are on our own. We are the outcasts among outcasts. We were considered a “sexual minority” back in a time when people were confused between Gender Identity and Sexual Orientation and the question of “Is it a choice” was still not clearly answered. We were adopted by a parent group who never really wanted us to begin with, but has grown to accept us as the proverbial red headed step child that we apparently are.

To those in the LGB community who have embraced us, I thank you and I adore you for it. I know Human Rights Watch has spearheaded many good things that have helped the TG and TS community, But for those of you who haven’t….for those of you that look at us like we’re freaks or that we don’t “fit in” or aren’t welcome, I ask that you stop at the first mirror you see and look hard at yourself. It was not too long ago that those looks were for YOU by the “normal” society at large. Even today in many area’s those looks are still for YOU. Remember what it was like when there was seldom a voice to be heard in your defense for rights and equality. How dare you…..How DARE you throw such Hippocratic sentiments to those in my community in a time where the fight for your plight is finally going in the right direction. How easily we forget the past.

You, my Homosexual friends(and I mean the term friend as I am Bi myself), are fortunate. You have no “transitioning”. You and I face the same fear of rejection from family, friends, work, but you will never know the fear of walking into a mall dressed for the first time as a Woman or Man (be you MtF or FtM). You will never know what its like to be refused service and kicked out of mens or women’s stores because they think you’re a pervert rather then a customer. You are not required to pass a “real life test” as we are. You do not suffer the overbearing cost of medications and surgeries. You Veil yourselves far better then we can. Mostly, your choice to come out is just that, a choice. Yes when people find out you can be subject to the heartbreaking Discrimination that we all face but largely you can keep your personal business to yourself for far long then we can.

Your attraction to whom you sleep with, love, desire to marry and live with can be hidden far more easily then those who are TS, just starting out, trying to pass their HBSC(Harry Benjamin Standards of Care) tests and requirements. We are required to out ourselves in order to BE ourselves. We cannot hide if we are to continue on our path. I know many Gay people who live together, love together and work but no one really knows they are gay because they leave their personal life at home. We don’t have that option. We have to PROVE we can live as our correct gender which means dressing, working, living, etc before we can progress to things like surgery if we desire. No one asks you to PROVE your gay, but we are demanded to prove who we truly are. You, thankfully, will never know this kind of humiliation. You are lucky my friends, I wouldn’t wish this on anyone.

In closing, We are all we have in the end. Now a days its not uncommon to see the Transgender movement pick up the fight themselves, tired of being left behind in the argument for equal protection and rights. Like it or not, we are apart of the LGBT community. Community is like Family. For those of us who have been rejected by our families, is not one sting of rejection enough? Together we are more powerful then we could ever be alone. Even though those of us who are TS or TG may not be with you forever, treat us as the brothers and sisters we are. Those of us who never fully transition will benefit from this fight for Gay Marriage even if only as a side effect(If you still have a penis, legally in many places you’re still a male and same goes for FtM, only the other way around).

Stop the exclusion. Embrace each other and together we will give those who oppress us a fight that will never, ever be forgot. And we will win.



~ by LiVia on May 4, 2011.

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