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expanding our view of gender

Over the last few decades, we have added new words to our gender lexicon: cisgendered and transgendered. But what do they mean? I know how people are trying to use them but sometimes I sense that they mean different things to different people.

There are people out there who are gender non-conforming in one way or another but don’t necessarily identify as transgendered. Instead they claim they don’t need to subscribe to gender rules that don't fit their identity. Typically they are mavericks or free spirits who feel at ease defining what gender on their own terms. Needless to say I was never one of them growing up.

Many of us are comfortable in our current bodies but we simply seek and have always sought a wider range of gender expression. An extreme version of this would be deciding to henceforth start dressing as a woman at work. Now if you think about this there is absolutely nothing inherently wrong with this premise. There are places where this is done and it brings to mind a hair salon I knew where one of the stylists always worked dressed as a woman.

For our Judeo-Christian culture this is still very much a taboo but the exact reason escapes me. I suppose this is because gender remains the last frontier to be seriously examined and questioned.

But if we were to free our societal rules for gender expression to the same extent that we have freed our sexual repression, I wager that we might see a lot less people attempt a full transition. My own increased comfort with expanded gender expression has produced a much happier person and has quashed my evaluating a permanent gender role transition.

Not everyone is at ease with the idea of venturing out crossdressed but I think for many this could be an answer to the frustrations they feel and have perhaps always felt.


Gender non conformist Chase Culpepper

Comments

  1. I totally agree with you. It is my opinion that there are some who transition simply because they can't handle the concept of not being one or the other. For them there is no inbetween.

    I also find it difficult with our expanding lexicon that there are not universally accepted definitions for our new words. With everyone using them how they see fit, it causes quite a bit of confusion. I personally see transgender as an umbrella term covering everyone from crossdressers to those who transition. But many see transgender as those who transition. It sure makes for difficult conversation huh?

    Thanks Joanna!

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  2. We are all different to one degree or another and terms do not fit any better than the concept of one size fits all pantyhose.
    I think what most want is to be accepted for who they are and what they do.
    As far as terms go I like to dress as a woman from time to time. It does not make me anything. Dressing as a woman is not that different than not dressing as a woman. Sometimes I pretend to be a golfer, other times I dress as a skiier.
    I am lots of different things at different times.
    I do agree with your premise that if we had the freedom and the ability to express ourselves as we would prefer then perhaps more drastic and permanent steps could be avoided.
    Pat

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  3. Thank you both for your comments. I see a time coming where gender variant and non conforming people will just be part of everyday landscape. Yes there are those who will choose to transition but it shouldn't be because they feel pressured to conform to someone else's standard. Who we are inside is so much more important than our physical form. More power to everyone.

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  4. true in that some people mistakenly feel that if they transion it will solve all their other problems. one really needs to know one's self first as transitioning will only solve that one issue that of being born in the wrong body but it won't solve other all of any other issues that they may face. i know because my ts cousen about my age and i have discussed this amongst our other discussions. she now feels more a complete person now but it is only one aspect of her life.

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  5. just one more fashion thought interesting in that in the north east many guys can wear earings but all the really cute costume ones ie little raindeers or other sparkly danglers still are not socially acceptable for guys as yet. we have come a long ways in society but we are not fully there yet in dressing in what feels right for us instead of what is correct to society. just look as certain professions in law a guy must still wear a tie AND a jacket on the hottest day or be reprimanded by the court. as i said we have a long ways to go in the world yet but at least we have come this far.

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