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Monday, March 20, 2017

Thoughts and Updates

I can't believe it's been almost a year since I've posted anything.  Time flies and we don't... marriage is still going strong.  It's pretty much settled back into a regular marriage.  Day to day activities, routine, working and back to what feels like our "normal."  I think we are in some ways stronger than we've ever been because we communicate a lot more than we used to.  Overall, things between my spouse and I are pretty great right now. 

I usually tend to keep this blog purely about my own thoughts and feelings and try not to get political or speak for any transgendered person.  I can't exactly speak for them because I have no true understanding of how it feels to live that life.  I can empathize and sympathize, but that is the best I can do.  I will never understand the internal struggles.  I don't presume to know everything about being transgendered because my spouse is.  I do, however, have a far better education about it than most of the general public, so I'm going to rant a bit...

First of all, I want to say that I'm proud that the transgender (and all spectrums of gender identity and sexuality) issues are being spoken about.  It's important for people to realize that it isn't a fad, it isn't like people are just trying to "be cool" by becoming part of that community.  It is real.  It is a terribly difficult existence for a lot of people, especially before it was publicy discussed.  We should all be able to live authentically and as long as it isn't hurting anyone else, we should all be afforded that right.  

The issue of trans people being unable to use the bathroom of the gender they identify with is one that is particularly upsetting to me.  It feels to me a lot like stepping backwards to when it was legal in our country to have separate bathrooms, fountains or lunch counters for "colored" people.  It's bullshit.  The arguments are not valid ones.  

First, it seems the bathroom issue is mainly targeted at MTF trans people.  The argument I have heard is that people are afraid of letting their children go into a bathroom where someone who was technically born a biological man might be.  I honestly don't understand any of the arguments surrounding this issue.  Women's bathrooms have stalls.  Men's bathrooms do as well, and chances are that most trans men would choose to simply use a stall instead of a urinal.  Children aren't going to see any trans woman or men exposing private parts to them.  If people have a fear of that, they are so grossly uninformed about how trans people feel.  In my experience, they are extremely conscientious and are of just trying to fit in without being noticed and doing everything they can so they don't make others uncomfortable because of their differences.

I feel that what people are afraid of is pedophilia, not transgendered people.  Pedophilia is sick and wrong,  but it has nothing to do with this conversation.  It is terribly offensive to assume there is any correlation between trans peple and criminal acts, especially against children.  Pedophiles can be men or women, and they may target children of either the same sex or opposite sex.  You might as well just not even take your child into public if you are that afraid of your child perhaps crossing paths with a stranger who may or may not be a pedophile.  

As a cis-gendered woman, I honestly don't give a shit about who uses what bathrooms.  Ever.  I wouldn't care if a cis-gendered guy came in and used the women's room.  I've used plenty of men's rooms with no incidents...their lines are usually WAY shorter and when you have to have to go.  Again, there are always bathroom stalls, even in men's rooms.  You always have privacy when you're going to the bathroom in a stall.  If someone is looking under or over the stall...yes, please notify authorities.  Otherwise, just LET PEOPLE GO TO THE BATHROOM.  

I don't know that there is a lot I can do to help the cause, to make a difference with the LGBTQ community, but I sometimes feel like I should be more vocal in some way.  I influence people in my immediate circles and I have written this blog to attempt to give support to both trans people and the ones who love them.  I want people to know that love is love, regardless of gender, sexuality, race, religion, or whatever else may separate us from the herd.  We're all unique and that's okay.  

The trans people I know, have spoken to, or have read about are quite courageous in my opinion.  They have, against all the fears society may have about them, chosen to live their authentic lives.  How many people can honestly say they are committed to being their authentic selves?  How many of us even know what that means?  It's not always easy to know exactly who you are and what your internal "truth" is.  To be brave enough to express yourself no matter the consequences of how society views you is an admirable thing.  

I am a much better person for having my spouse in my life.  I have learned what courage is.  I have learned more about what true love is.  I have a more complete understanding of humanity and that we are all just trying to navigate life in the best way we know how, so compassion and empathy are of the upmost importance.  We can all learn from each other if we only open up and listen.

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