As someone who is rather active in the LGBT community online (where people love to voice their opinions in ways they otherwise wouldn’t), you don’t know how many times I’ve heard the question “If you’re a girl/boy, why do you dress like (insert opposite gender)” or “Why do lesbian relationships always have someone that looks like a boy and the other that looks like a girl? Date a real man!” This shows a lack of understanding between gender identity and gender expression. We have defined what a male is supposed to look like, so those that go against the norm (by painting their nails, wearing female clothes, etc) are labeled as gay, some horrible derogatory word, or they “want to be a female”. The same goes for female who are more masculine. In this world of confusion and lack of understanding and eduation, one has to wonder what differentiates a masculine woman who might not like her chest and calls herself “daddy” or “king” or a male who uses “she”, “queen” and stuffs a bra from a transman and transwoman. I definitely understand the confusion and despite being transgender myself, I was, for a little, slightly confused and scared I might just be a masculine female.
It may be very hard to differentiate the two when you hear lesbians say that they’re dyshporic about their chest for whatever reason, especially when they use a strap on for sex and don’t desire to be touched. Those are grey areas that can definitely confuse someone, but what clicked as the main difference between masculine females and transmen and feminine men and trans women is this: the former identify and see themselves as the sex they were born as.
What really made this click for me was when I watching a YouTube channel I am subscribed to. The 2 women who run it are moms of a 2 year old girl and they’re basically documenting their lives as a 2 mom household. The particular video in question, the two moms discuss how their daughter thought one mom was a “boy” because she dressed masculine. They reveal that it actually bothered the masculine mom, even though she knew her daughter didn’t mean it in a mean way. Had she been transgender or a “Woman who wants to be a man”, she wouldn’t have been offended or offput by it.
Transgender people are those who feel as though they should’ve been born the opposite sex. Their mind is like that of the sex opposite to their own. They aren’t “masculine women” or “feminine men”, they’re women/men that are trapped in their own body. The two can, from an outside point of view, seem very synonymous and almost one in the same, when in actuality, there are very distinct differences.
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