Rant About Being AFAB

Warnings: for discussion of transmisogyny, equality, and the innate personhood of GNC people called women and people who were born with vaginas.

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When I was born, the doctor looked between my legs and said “It’s a girl!” And that was that. I was given a female name, female clothes, and have been treated like a person who was growing up to be a woman every since.

Did you notice something about that last paragraph? How all the verbs were passive on my part? Yeah. I am Assigned Female At Birth, and that will never change. Ever.

However, because this was a passive thing, I literally had no say in it. I didn’t get a choice in a name I hate or a place in a gender binary that insisted I liked pink, really I do. And no matter how much I change, or keep my pants on at all times, or even lie about it, these facts will always be deciding factors in how people deign to treat me.

I spend a lot of time thinking about trans women. Not in a creepy chaser kind of way, though. More in a “I wonder if they will ever stop decrying the heinous sin that is being born female” kind of way. And yeah, I get that transmisogyny is a real and terrible thing, and I get that trans women face far more discrimination and hatred than almost any other gender.

But at the same time (and please, read this carefully and with cautious eyes, because it will be very easily misinterpreted) I think that the idea propagated by the trans women I’ve met, that only AMAB transgender people matter or are important, or the idea that everyone else is untrustworthy scum, is utter bullshit. Moreso, it’s sexism, pure and simple- that you, a person I know very little about and who I have only just met, are less than me because you don’t share my gender identity and genitalia.

If I had my way, I’d rather have a completely sexless body, like one of those dolls that you can dress to be a boy or a girl, or some combination. I’d rather not be AFAB, but I’d just as much rather not be AMAB.  And I feel that it flies in the face of everything GNC (gender non-conforming) people should stand for- that it’s not the body or gender that makes a person, but the mind and actions.

Countless people, trans and cis alike, have been, continue to be, and will be hurt every day for their identity. But exchanging cispatriarchy for transmatriarchy is not the answer to this suffering- and yes, that’s what “trans women are better than everyone else you are all scum” is becoming. A transmatriarchy, even if only on the internet, is taking shape. It makes me wonder why we see the need to raise one sex, one gender above the rest. Because at its base, AMAB trans people had the same experience at birth as I did, with one difference- the doctor looked between their legs and called them “he” instead of “she.” Why should that make all the difference?

 

~Terrance

 

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3 thoughts on “Rant About Being AFAB

  1. This really resonated with me, especially the sentence about wishing you had a completely sexless body. I’m AFAB myself, and I’ve been told that it’s necessary to admit the privilege that comes with that, though I think being told to admit privilege from something that seems to offer no privilege, at least considering the internalized (and external) shit we have to deal with is in itself fucked up. I agree with you.

    • Thanks so much. I will admit that I felt really shy about posting this, because there are people who will always argue that afab women are transmysoginistic, and that afab men are mysoginistic and have male privilege and take advantage of that… By being men. It’s really a no win situation.

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