August 13, 2014
Coming Out For The Second Time
How has it been since I came out for the second time?
Amazing. A huge relief. Scary at times. A little confusing but not that confusing, certainly not as confusing as life was before. My head has been incredibly clear.
I’m Tom- short for Tomás- and I am currently sitting around being well-dressed, smart, interesting and cool. I am mostly straight, I have two awesome cats, I have started rereading one of my favourite book series’, “The Riverrun Trilogy” by S. P. Somtow, one of my favourite authors. I bought some new clothes and fountain pens on the weekend and caught up with friends. I am basically contented and complete.
One thing I really did not expect was it to be such a relief or for me to feel suddenly so much better and so much happier and confident. I thought it would be much more confusing and harder in my head.
So, how has it been otherwise?
Other people have mostly been supportive, or at least congratulatory. Seriously! It has been much much better than I had anticipated. I feel like I have a lot of people to talk to, and generally they are all pretty awesome! People have noticed that I look happier and more confident and that my demeanour has changed. I am constantly getting compliments about my new wardrobe (which looks pretty awesome). It also helps that in general my friends have been interested in the whole process! I think it is interesting!
Here is a photo:
However, I have been a lot more sensitive than I expected in regards to when things have made me feel upset.
The people who have advertently or inadvertently made me feel uncomfortable have fallen into the following camps:
- Women (usually) who say “But you can be female and still like masculine things”. Not the point, honey. Plus, what if I am a feminine man (I am).
- Men (usually) who are fixated on “But you don’t have a penis and phalloplasty sucks”. None of your business, I would like to see how well you pleasure your partner(s), and once again, none of your business. (Actually I am quite pleasantly surprised at how little of this I got. Really, only one or two people)
- People who jump the gun and become very insistent - even when I say I have not decided yet- on “So when are you doing X, Y or Z” when I have not made any decisions yet about whether I will do hormones or surgery or legal things. “Oh but you must!” - says who?
- People who later make inappropriate jokes or jokes that hinge on me being a “girl”. Fortunately this has not happened often but when it has it has, it has hurt.
- The wrong pronoun. This is actually probably the least of my concerns. Most of which has just been a matter of people forgetting inadvertently. I can excuse that as long as eventually people get the hang of it.
- Once again, the idea that “it only counts if you have done something”. Sometimes people for one reason or another choose not to take hormones or surgery at all, often for complex reasons. Does that somehow make their gender different? Given that the first stage in any transition anyway would be to “live as one’s gender”, I don’t see how this “does not count” or that close friends should be waiting to change their pronoun use.
- People posting links to anti-man rants that generalise everything about masculinity or manhood or men as being pathological or suggest that women should take over. Unhelpful. Inaccurate. Counter-productive. And kind of hurtful, actually. That sort of essentialism and black and white thinking is exactly what made historical male-centred patriarchies problematic. Oh, wait, you did not mean to include me in your anti-man rant. Why is that exactly? Oh, right, because I am not a “real man”?
On a much more positive and once again interesting note, since coming out quite a few people have approached me and said that what I have talked about really resonated with them- either because they understood a friend/family/other people much better, or because what I was describing really resonated with their own experiences and for the the first time they had talked about it openly and it was good.
So I guess one small action sometimes makes a big difference to the people around you in ways that are actually kind of awesome and unexpected.
Snipergirl or Peter Pan or How to Mans
When I was 15, I wrote my first ever good short story. I did it as a writing exercise - I’d decided that I really liked writing and I was going to
A Train Journey
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