Readdressing how one ‘feels’ male.

I have penned many frustrating sentences trying to convey how one ‘feels like a man’ each time i try to write it in it’s most simplistic form, it has always struck me just how absurd a notion it is and never felt quite eloquent enough as a description. I’ve pondered the question over and over in my head “How does one feel like a man?” asking myself “How do you describe such an absurd phenomenon?

Tonight, as i thought about it some more it struck me that the terminology used such as “I feel like a man/woman” is a misrepresentation. But due to the appearances of that phrase being the only way to express it verbally, it becomes the go to phrase.

To say someone ‘feels’ like a man brings up the image of someone waking up on a daily basis and thinking about and attributing feelings to gender. When speaking to cisgendered people (I use the term here only to distinguish them from transgender) an often heard remark or question is “How do you feel like a gender?” and they will point out in their confusion that they don’t wake up everyday thinking to themselves “I’m a man” (or woman) it seems obvious to trans people why, why would they? If you have the validation of your body being male then why would you think to yourself “I feel like a man” you simply just be.
Just like cisgendered people though trans people (unless they’re the ones obsessing over identity politics) don’t generally wake up everyday saying to themselves “I feel like a man/woman.” At least in my experience i am not conciously thinking at every moment “I feel male, I feel masculine, I feel like a man” we do what we do and we just be. It’s an instinctual thing more than it is a feeling, the feelings come after the instinct. Like a lot of instincts it’s an automatic thing, but then when your body contradicts this instinct suddenly your gender is thrown to the forefront of your consciousness. Your body contradicts this seemingly ingrained instinct and the lack of language we have to explain it translates from our mouths as “But i feel like a man” Your body is not validating your instincts, your experience, or your instinct and experience are not validating your body, either way, it’s awkward and it’s painful.

Thanks for reading
FW

On being trans and being offended

I have a cold shower on an almost daily basis. When I first started having cold showers, it was a shock to my system, my heart was beating fast and I was bouncing about on my shower chair while gasping. But the more i had the cold showers the less shocking it became. Now when i have cold showers I don’t get any shock, i’m used to it, i’m immune to the initial kneejerk reaction. And it’s the same with emotional ‘triggers’

I’m not going to lie. I’m human like anyone else and so sometimes I hear and read things that are ‘hateful’ towards transsexuals and as a human being it can sometimes have an impact on my mood. Just having people debate whether it’s a mental illness, we’re just all freaks or we’re born this way can sometimes be ‘triggering’ not because the debate is hateful as such, but because if something directly affects you it can be hard to read people debating about how ‘real’ something is, when you yourself have to live with it through day to day. Whether i’m mentally ill, a complete narcissistic freak or i was born this way, i’m still having to live my experience on a daily basis. But here is what I’ve learnt and continue to learn, the more i expose myself to ‘hateful’ comments, debates about how freaky people like me are etc the more i become immune to an emotional response.

I dont want it to sound dramatic when i say i somewhat torture myself, but at times it sure feels like i do. In the moment something that has ‘triggered’ me will leave me a wreck and if i’m really unlucky it can sometimes take a while to recover, but the more i take the plunge into the metaphorical cold shower the more it lessens the shock.

Thanks  for reading
FW

Come get your male privilege!

25 reasons to become a tranny!

I know i’m a really bad FTM when I use the word tranny, come at me bro.

So apparently if you’re FTM you gain that thing I mentioned in my previous post called ‘male privilege’ which is this magical thing men get, because penis. Do rainbows shoot out of penises? Sometimes I wonder. Anyway here we go

1. I’m suddenly funny.
I’ve always been dry, sarcastic, and satirical with my humour. In Ye Olden Times, I was considered unfunny at best – and a bitch at worst. Now that I’m a short white guy, people automatically peg me for a comedian and laugh at the bulk of my mouth zings. But nothing has changed. I’ve even recycled some of my old material that people didn’t find funny before just to make sure.

You are funny, you’re right especailly when you use phrases like “happy button” to refer to your 2 inch length clitoris *(btw no one wanted to know, no one cares. It’s not significant), i laughed anyway, but i don’t think i laughed in the way you want when trying to be funny. Okay so being a bit of an arsehole here, lets take his word for it. People find him funnier now. Okay fair enough maybe they do, but this isn’t evidence of male privilege. It could potentially be evidence that since you’ve gained confidence you also as a result come across as funny when telling your jokes, you appear sharper with your wit because you are sharper because you’re feeling better.

2. Yet I’m still taken (more) seriously.
I’m still amazed at the amount of people that now immediately shut their mouths the second I open mine. Believe me, my ideas haven’t improved at all. I’ve even tried to derail serious conversations with ludicrous stuff just to see what would happen – and I’d still be regarded highly.

3. I rarely get interrupted.
I used to be interrupted so often while presenting as a woman that I in turn started to talk over people as a form of conversational survival. Unfortunately, because it became so ingrained in me, I still find myself doing it from time to time even though it’s rarely necessary any more.

I don’t know but before T it sounds like you were really annoying, talking over people. “my ideas haven’t improved at all” as is evidenced by this list.

4. I get paid more.
The proof is in my paychecks. Actual, numerical proof.

So let me get this straight, you came out as a trans man and then started hormones and your boss was like “Well now you’re joining the ‘boys club’ lets raise your wages”? This smells of something…..

5. It’s easier for me to be poor.
Aside from usually getting paid more, it’s been easier to find work when the person doing the hiring is a white guy. It’s like helping out a buddy or something.

Yes all those men who live in poverty and/or homless are living it large.

6. My clothing is more practical.
And better made and longer lasting and cheaper and less judged.

Because women can’t choose what to wear? Who judges what women wear the most, men or women? 😉

7. I get a ton of free passes.
For the record, I’ve never done anything horrific enough to invoke the all-saving phrase of “Boys will be boys,” but I often forget to watch my mouth in front of superiors and authority figures. And while I was getting into tons of trouble for the smallest thing through school and my earliest jobs, these days I can’t recall a single time I’ve been called out or reprimanded.

Don’t let the prison sentence gap between men and women doing the same crime get in the way of your logic.
““Boys will be boys,” i’ve only ever heard used when referring to boys being a bit boisterous, energetic, having play fights and occasionally coming out of them with an injury, their mothers roll their eyes “Well, boys will be boys!”

8. I’m not held accountable for keeping rape from happening.
I remember all of the rape prevention education I got, which always focused on how I should behave, where I should walk when, how to appropriately cover my drink, and so on. These days, I’m told nothing. Not even not to rape.

Do you know what else we’re not told? We’re not told not to murder! Also women aren’t taught ‘not to rape’ either are they? I could go on about this even more, before I don’t have the energy. (thats a cop out, Flint. Yea, well…Penis.)

9. I’m very likely to arrive home safely after walking alone at night.
Assuming nobody is out looking to fag-bash, but that’s a somewhat different matter. It remains that I walk alone at night far more than I used to purely because I’m a dude. Put up my hoodie, and people have even been known to cross the sidewalk to avoid passing me.

Yes you can walk home more safely than women, it’s not like you’re at a higher risk of ANY violence happening to you inclduing homicide is it?

10. I don’t have to worry about keeping an eye on my drink at parties.
Unless it’s at a gay venue where there seem to be some questionable, creepy chickenhawks around, drink safety doesn’t even cross my mind any more.

I’ll just leave this here

11. I’m not told by strangers (or anybody else) to smile.
Not once has it happened since. Not once.

Because you’re less miserable? Because people don’t care as much? That being said i’ve had it said to me, but i’m a miserable grumpy git, also disabled so maybe it’s more of a condescending “Aww look at this fella. Smile, son it might never happen” “It already has” I say with a smile as i run over his feet.

12. I don’t have strangers giving uninvited opinions about my body as I pass by.
(Or then expecting me to thank them for it.) Again, not once has this happened in the usual, everyday world.

yea, no one cares what you look like anymore. Well done, yay Male privilege!

13. I’m allowed to have body hair.
‘Nuff said.

Everyone is ‘allowed’ to have body hair. The fact people have preferences when it comes to sexual encounters will never change, I wouldn’t go with a hairy woman thats for sure. I know, i’m really shallow….

14. I’m allowed to grow old.
And likely will even be considered “handsome” or “sophisticated” because of it.

You’re allowed to grow old as long as death doesn’t catch you first!

15. I’m allowed to eat without being policed.
I’m actually still really damn skinny, but people no longer do things like judge me about what I’m eating or ask if I should be eating it at all.

I’ve never actually witnessed a woman being ‘policed’ for what she eats. But I’ll leave this one, I don’t feel i know enough.

16. My abilities speak louder than my appearances at work.
When I work on-site gigs, I tend to just wear jeans and a T-shirt. Nobody cares. It’s all about the quality of my work.

Different jobs have different dress codes, i don’t really get your point?

17. The bulk of porn is made with me in mind.
Well, the general sense of a guy who has any sexual interest in women. Even “lesbian” porn is often geared toward the male gaze.

Plenty of women watch porn

18. Older white guys treat me like a best friend.
Especially when I have to wear professional slacks and a tie, I’ve been amazed at how many strangers happily strike up conversation with me in this kind of…fatherly way. Their smiles are warm, their eyes are bright, and they seem eager to bestow any wisdom upon me that I could ever think to ask. It’s like I’m automatically their patriarchal protégé or something.

So because men feel a sort of fartherly bond towards a man much younger than them this is deemed male privilege? They see you as a young man, like they were once themselves and so feel they can relate to you more than they could if you were a woman. Women probably have the same thing happen with other elder women, them wanting to bestow their wisdom onto them because they find her relateable.

19. I can be a gamer without worry of being threatened, insulted, or demeaned.
The gaming industry is still very much a man’s world. Female characters are frequently sexualised, brutalised, and demeaned when they’re represented at all – right along with the female gamers themselves.

I don’t play computer games very much and when i do I don’t really join in the social stuff, I’m anti-social like that. I mute the speakers or earphones when playing a multiplayer game so i can’t really say i know much about this on a personal level. But from what i have heard, i’ve heard men insulting men, women insulting men, men insulting women, women insulting women. It seems pretty ‘fair game’ to me. Everyone is trying to one up each other, whoda thunk it, they’re playing a competetive game and they’re trying to one up each other!

20. My comfort comes before anyone else’s.
Nobody expects me to sacrifice a thing for them any more.

Really? one thing that seems to be ingrained into our society is that men should make women feel comfortable at all times.

21. I have significantly less sexual liability.
I can now have as much sex with as many people as I want and nobody says boo about it.

Ever heard the phrase ‘womanser?’ implying that you use women, which is then frowned upon for you using women in such a ‘degrading’ way. Yes there are some subcultures (especially in the UK, probably also in america) called ‘lad cultures’ where they each go out on the pull and encourage each other, but plenty of women do the same and it’s encouraged by some and shamed by others.

22. I’m allowed to take up space – and lots of it.
If I feel like spreading out on public transportation, nobody – regardless of gender – tells me to move over any more. They just act like I have full right to be obnoxious. (Please note that I’ve only ever done this for experimental purposes.)

I take it you haven’t been arrested for ‘manspreading’ yet?

23. I’m not subject to “soft” sexism.
Being asked to grab someone their coffee, help decorate for a work party, or help clean up said party is simply a thing of the past.

Lift some heavy furniture instead

24. People think my successes have been made purely by my own gumption.
I’ve worked hard, sure, but I’ve also had plenty of luck and help. People just don’t question my supposed right to be praised any more, nor imply that I earned what I earned by playing some sort of card. My same exact successes are somehow now all me, all hard-earned, and all things that had absolutely nothing to do with the cultural system we have in place.

You may have a point here. Because feminism has made it harder to take women seriously in the work place because of quotas and the like. “Are you here because you’re qualified, or because vagina?”

25. I can say the most ridiculous things imaginable.
And people will still think I’m right. Seriously. I’ve tested this.

Oh! I think we’ve been had! This whole article was a social experiment wasn’t it?

Why terms like ‘male privilege’ are problematic

If you ever get into a debate with SJW (social justic warriors) or feminists and you happen to be a man and white, especially if you’re heterosexual you will, i can garantee you, you WILL be told you have male privilege, if you are disagreeing you will probably be asked to ‘check your male privilege.’ Sometimes to try and back up their claims further of ‘male privilege’ they will direct you towards transsexual FTM’s who ‘admit to gaining male privilege’ because they were once women right? So how can they be wrong, it’s surely evidence of male privilege, it couldn’t possibly be evidence of anything else going on, could it?! Nah. Course not, it couldn’t possibly be that they’re less miserable now they’ve transitioned and so are easier to approach, that their body language has changed due to a lift in confidence now that they can be seen as men, could it? It must be down to that old ‘patriarchy’ and ‘male privilege.’

But anyway where was i meant to be going with this? Well it’s a problematic term for so many reasons. It’s often used in debates at appropiate moments that essentialy shut down any discussion from the party disagreeing with the feminist rhetoric and the idea of ‘male privilege’ it’s often said in a way akin to saying “fuck you and your man problems, you have male privilege and we’re here to talk about gender equality, you have too much of everything, everything you say is therefore coming from a bias place of privilege.” Now then if i decide to agree, just for the sake of agreeing that men have ‘male privilege’ i would also suggest females have ‘female privilege’ something they will readily deny if one dares to suggest it. Oh but if you’re a man denying your male privilege, you’re denying it because your blind to it, in fact your very privilege makes you blind to it. So i guess their female privilege works in the same way, they can’t see it. What? Females don’t have privilege? You’re pissed off at that idea? Why? Why are you so pissed off? Do you feel a bit dehumanised like your pain as a human being who happens to be a female is being belittled and brushed over because of your supposed privilege?

It is a dehumanising phrase, it lacks compassion it lacks ears to listen with.

I know some people have this idea of me as some ‘bitter man’ some may even go as far as to suggest i’m a mysogonist, you know because i’m openly anti-feminist or non feminist. I look at the feminist narrative and i reject it, i reject it based on the problematic approach and the evidence. I don’t reject it simply because i’m a bitter old man who can’t take the idea of people try to better womens lives, because i’m not against bettering womens lives, i’m not against bettering ANYONE’s life! what i’m against is a problematic theory, and people who use these phrases they’ve learnt in ‘gender studies’ or just from simply being a feminist and then using it shut down discourse. You say male privilege, I point you to the 88% of people who are homeless who all just happen to be men, you say male privilege, i point you to domestic violence statistcs not often talked about showing it’s almost equal between the sexes, you say male privilege, i point you to the goverment funded domestic violence shelters some of which will not allow women in them if they take their sons over the age of 12 (How does that help women in that scenario?) you say male privilege, i point towards quotas that say employers must emply a certain number of women therefore meaning if a man does happen to be more qualified than a woman he won’t get the job, because vagina. I say ‘female privilege’ you point me towards domestic violence, I say ‘female privilege’ you point me towards women living in poverty, i say female privilege, you point me towards rape…. Do you see what I’m getting at here? We can both play at that game, the truth is this ‘you’re privileged’ nonsense needs to stop if we ever want to have a truly open disucssion. Your privilege rhetoric is a barrier in the conversation, it is not a helpful tool and i suggest we take it out of the tool box in trying to fix these issues because the tool is bunk, it’s useless.

They beg you to let them bleed for you

It makes their hearts swell with pride as they feel offence on a minority’s behalf. They enjoy the warm feeling in their bellies as they feel their way to the top, as they sit with their imaginary crowns sitting on their imaginary thrown of superiority because they have a heart, and they see you as an individual. They’re offended on your behalf at the stereotypes you have to put up with, they scream loud about the jokes that they tell you, you are the butt of. Yes that’s right, they insist you are the butt of the joke, just let them bleed on your behalf! Watch as their egos inflate as they ‘acknowledge’ you too are human and watch how they beat their chests for dominance as they roar for your acceptance. They feel warm inside, they feel good almost gooey, fluffy, they see unicorns and they shit rainbows for you, yes, just for you! And they feel so brilliant because they feel just so diverse! Ooh such fuzzy feels!

What is manhood?

This blog is meant to be a place where I can try and inform people though i don’t claim to be an expert, I simply mean to inform people of what i have gleaned from my life as a transman, people can agree or disagree and search for themselves if they so wish to. I also opened this blog to perhaps help other trans men like myself who are feeling alienated from society at large as well as the political spheres in which target trans individuals as an ally. For this post though, I’m asking for your perspective, trans or not. I’m about to post to you a private journal entry dated 26/01/2015, in case you have gleaned by now from the way i write my dates, i’m british.

Journal entry is slightly edited:

26/01/15

I can’t in good conscience allow myself to wallow in this dishonesty. The harsh truth that the nature of transsexuality is still uknown (is it mental, is it physical?) can’t be suppressed and it pains me. Sometimes i feel like some sort of leftist experiment. I can’t for whatever reason, and never could seperate myself from a ‘male identity’ yet the unquestionable truth stares me in the face everyday in the mirror, or simply when i look down. I for one can’t abide the uncertainty, and with that i’m left with one question, how can I reconcile myself with an undeniable quest for manhood, when I am faced with the truth of my predicament? I have and do remain inconsolable in my quest for truth.


There is one thing i’ve never been able to, and that is turn my face blindly away from truth, i’ve never been able to back down from the quest for truth in almost every aspect of my life, no matter how painful or ugly that truth staring back at me may be. If something remains uncertain I place it in a box in my brain and i return to it when some other evidence comes to light that may relate to the uncertain remains in that box, if the connection appears to be a falsehood I place it back in it’s box and put it aside, if the evidence suggests that the remains are imagined then i discard them and if the remains fit the pieces of a puzzle then they stay out of the box in a more certified place. So for me the very nature of this transsexual experience is painful, on the aspect alone that I don’t know how this happens. There is only one thing I can be certain about and that is that i’ve felt this since i can remember. I fear the answers as much as i fear the uncertainty, still as ugly as that truth may be I couldn’t begin to stop myself searching for the truth.

Thanks for reading

FW