Look who was interviewed on CNN last night:
I thought that Chaz handled himself phenomenally well. I can't imagine how uncomfortable it would be to talk about something so personal on a conservative news program being aired to millions of people.
I also noticed and appreciated how Chaz relayed his own experience gender-wise, like saying, "I wore exclusively male clothing...", but then re-directed the focus, explaining the agony of disconnect, "... lived a lot of my life in my head. It wasn't connected to my body.", and how he went on to ask how Anderson Cooper may feel if he were to wake up tomorrow in a woman's body.
I like this, because the gender component is something that is entirely separate from what's described as the "disconnect", the - in my own experience - hard-wired brain map which seems to be mismatched. There are trans men who are hyper-feminine in their gender expression, for example; but who also transition to match.
In my experience the gender component is definitely separate from the underlying refreshing sensation of finally, bit by bit, experiencing an anatomical connection and going through the puberty my brain is mapped for and has been struggling without.
The gender component feels more socialized,... like I'm aware that I prefer masculine pronouns, but I wonder how much of that has to do with growing up in a binary gendered world where, due to being more masculine naturally, I ended up relating more to culturally "masculine" things - like names and pronouns. Irrelevant to the why, ... the preference is there, but I can't help but wonder if I grew up in a culture that had "other", if I would've preferred and related to entirely different pronouns altogether. I'd still require hormone therapy and surgical intervention to fuse the mismatch between my brain-map and anatomy, but I may prefer different pronouns, attire, and name.
Yesterday I spent a lot of time on the Westminster College campus, which I will be attending this Fall. Assuming all goes to plan, which I'm really hoping that it will. I met with various departments and also went on a campus tour. In every.single.meeting masculine pronouns were used galore, despite the fact that my name is still Melanie legally and the paperwork is right in front of them.
In the admissions meeting, it was even more pronounced after an admissions employee retrieved paperwork for another student named Melanie. I alerted her to the fact that I'm a different "Melanie" altogether, and she found the right paperwork and returned.
I learned that, due to my high GPA from the community college, I qualify for their maximum tuition grant. And that's the minimum so far. I'll learn more once I actually receive my financial aid information next week.
After our appointment, she walked me around to show me some other resources, like a program called McNair. She also introduced me to everyone in masculine pronouns. My being trans never came up once, even with my feminine first name. Perhaps she didn't think to even check the gender mark on my application.
She also escorted me to the campus tour and introduced me to them, also, "Hey everyone. This is Mel. He's planning to start this Fall..."
Look what I stumbled across! Mr. Transman Grid and Rocco (Katastrophe) in Allison Michael Orenstein’s Mr. Transman gallery .
PART 2: Double Incision Mastectomy with Nipple Grafts by Dr. Cori Agarwal Surgery Photos (EXTREMELY GRAPHIC)As a warning, these photos are extremely graphic , but also incredibly informative and educational.
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