Time to crack open the head of a trans person, and see how they tick….. in a non-violent, picture way that is.
There it is… the brain of a trans woman. Beautiful isn’t it? Just so curvy and sexy-like. Study it… what does it tell you? Does it speak to you? Do you “see the trans?”
Ok, now that the joking answers are aside, and perhaps some that can actually read a MRI and are making judgements–time to get to the point.
Cis-gender people (i.e. “people who are not transgender”) can’t really understand what it’s like to be transgender. You can try, you can think of what you think it might be like, but you’re going to fail. There are examples that might get you close to it, but it’s not possible to know exactly what it’s like.
It’s kind of like trying to picture nothing. You can’t do it. You can picture a black area–but that’s still something. It’s like picturing death with no afterlife. It’s hard to impossible to picture life without you in it. Or you could even try to imagine that you wake up one day and your genitals and body has now become that of the “opposite gender”, and your clothing has magically changed to also match that gender, but your name has stayed the same.
Now while many transgender people pictured that before transitioning, and were like “yes, how can I get this to happen?”, it kind of starts as a comedic thing for cis people.
A Heterosexual Cis-Gender person waking in the wrong body
Sure you might decide to examine and play with your new body, just to see how things work. You might even decide to have some alone time in the shower, or just in the bed—you know, just to see what it’s like, or maybe you’ll say it’s to learn about the opposite gender for when you get in your ‘actual’ body again. You may take pictures, post things online, call up your friends, and just be like “you won’t believe what happened!” It’ll be funny, a joke. You may even make plans to see your friends later on in the day just you you can show them your new body.
Later, the novelty of being in the wrong body will have worn off—there’s only so much naked posing and playing with yourself you can do before you just get tired of it. You may even need to use the bathroom, and realize things don’t feel the same way as they did before. You’ll try to use a public bathroom, and be told you’re in the wrong bathroom. You may find you’re not really certain how to get dressed (well, if you’re a woman now, but of course depends on a number of things). But for now you’re still going to take on your old habits for your cleaning and dressing–just in different clothes.
Eventually you’ll start hanging out with your friends, only now they may be the “opposite gender” to you now based on your appearance, but you still have the same likes, you’re still the same person to you—you’ve just had your body swapped somehow. Some friends may be like “so, let’s see your genitals!” But now you may not be the same gender as them with your body. Does it seem weird? Do you show them because you don’t believe you’re the gender of your body?
After a night out, you return home, knowing that when you wake up, everything will be normal.
The next day you wake up, and you’re still in the wrong body. And the next day, the next day, weeks, months, years pass, and you’re still in the wrong gender body. Whenever you go out people call you by the pronouns you look like, not what you know you used to be. They may assume you’re gay, and may make fun of you, just because you don’t dress/act the way they expect (you’ve had time to buy new clothes, and you’re still the same person you were before remember?). You start to realize that if you use the bathroom, it feels wrong to use the one of your new body, yet you worry what would happen if you didn’t. You go to job interviews, or class, and people wonder why your name doesn’t match your gender. You know why, but really, who’s going to believe you woke up as the other gender one day?
How long do you think you would last before you looked into restoring your original gender?
Seriously… before you continue, answer this question to yourself: if you had any time for how long you’d last listed for that last question, why? You are, by “all definitions” as the anti-trans people say, the gender that your body changed to. Remember, many in the world don’t believe your brain has anything to do with gender identity, and even if it did, it doesn’t matter, it’s just your genitals.
Now I realize that some of you would say you’d just keep the new gender body…. Granted this could be for a few reasons, but even you keep the new body (assuming you’re not transgender), do you at least get any idea as to why people would want to “go back”? It’s kind of like that for transgender people, only we were born in “the wrong body”. In a sense, we woke up in it.
I admit that this isn’t the perfect example, but for transgender people “waking up” as the wrong gender happens. Only for us “waking up” is when the brain knows what gender it is, and it discovers that the body doesn’t match. What the person does once they discover their transgender depends on the person. There’s different levels of gender dysphoria that people experience. Then you have society and how they treat transgender people. These two factors strongly influence when people come out as transgender, or potentially even seek medical treatment. Some people knew their entire lives, but knew it was a death sentence if they said they were when younger, so they waited, and waited…. sometimes they didn’t tell anyone until they hit retirement age. Others, they knew it was “safer” to say something younger, and they transition in school.