It’s come up a number of times during my transition, and I was thinking about it as I reposted lost notes last night, but people have sometimes asked:
“Don’t you still have ‘male’ privilege from living as a male?
Couldn’t you decide to de-transition and go back to having that privilege?”
No and no. Trans rates as one of the most disenfranchised groups on the planet. Want to be the most disenfranchised? Be a trans woman of color (TWOC). Every bit of assumed privilege is methodically stripped from you by society. Does it hurt? Yes, as most major life changing events can hurt. Do you get to retain any of that privilege? I doubt it. Even if you wanted to, and I strongly suggest that most trans women I know don’t, society wouldn’t let you. On the other hand this is probably why the majority of most trans women I know have also become the strongest supporters of women’s rights. Never having those rights, that safety is one thing, but experiencing having all of your safety nets removed and falling is quite an experience. You know exactly how much you have lost, and exactly how much every other woman still has to gain.
And the second question. Physically yes. I could wear male clothes of a certain type, cut my hair, let my facial hair grow, bind my breasts…….. but I have had ample time to ask myself about this. And every time the answer is the same. Mentally I couldn’t. It would honestly kill me to do that. It would put me back in the mental state of mind I was in 6 years ago, considering suicide as a viable option daily. It was only admitting who I was to myself and moving forward with transition that I was able to set those demons that had haunted me for years aside. The ‘man’ I had been was a broken, hurting shell that needed to be disposed of for the wonderful caring and loving (including self loving) woman to rise from the debris of that former life. She’d been there all along trying to find a voice, to find a way out. To go back in order to ‘regain’ that privilege would cost me so much more than I would gain. So I continue to travel…