In the past 3 days, I’ve been misgendered three times, four if you count my brother calling me sister. Which I’ll say right now, counts. The other times were by strangers.
1. I was waiting at the bus stop on my way to one of my gf’s place and I was talking to a guy about music and movies. It came out that he played Tenor sax and I told him I played Alto, but I was just starting. He looked at my hands and said because they were small I’d have a hard time. My fingernails were painted black and the nail polish was chipping. I was wearing flip flops and my toenails were painted black. I had on a collar shirt and jean shorts. The jean shorts weren’t as baggy as I normally wear. After he introduced himself, he said it was nice meeting you, sir? or ma’am? I smiled and did a little tilt of my head and said “sir” like I was correcting and talking to someone a bit slow on the uptake. I think the way I was dressed and my nails being painted had something to do with it.
2. Monday I was at Vons at the deli counter. There was a couple of us waiting. The guy behind the counter asked who was first and the guy next to me, pointed to me and said she is. The guy behind the counter looked at him funny and helped me and called me sir. I had just shaved earlier that morning but I don’t do a clean shave. I still had a shadow fuzzy thing going on.
3. Tuesday, today. Again at Vons, I am walking through the store and there is a woman selling Union Tribunes. She said to me, Ma’am would you like a paper. I gave her a smile and said no. She didn’t get all flustered and apologize. I am wondering, am I putting out a feminine vibe? More so than usual. My jean shorts today are cut offs and a bit more form fitting but still loose. Especially in the caboose ;p I am binding too, so my chest appears flat. I just don’t know. I feel really visible all of the sudden.
I am not being harassed but I feel like being called ma’am is a giant step back. I’ve been on T for 2 years and 11 months. I haven’t been she’d this much since the first 6 or 7 months of my transition. Funnily enough right before the first sir or ma’am incident on Sunday I had just attended a Genderqueers San Diego discussion group. I identify as non-binary trans. I identify as neither male or female. Sometimes I feel like a perfect blend of both. Sometimes I feel a little more guy than girl but sometimes I feel a bit more fem. I was saying in the group how much I like wearing nail polish and how I want to possible wear eyeliner and hot pink sun glasses for pride this year. I was saying how I was tired of binding and I wish it didn’t matter. I want to be read socially as male but I want to wear pretty tops and I don’t want to sacrifice breathing and comfort (by binding) if at all possible. The thing is I don’t want to be fucked with on the street or on the bus. I wish it didn’t matter. I definitely love being on Testosterone and having male secondary sex characteristics. I love it. I just know that I am not a traditional type of guy. I am no where near the manly mad type and I would like to express more of traditionally feminine or queer look. Eyeliner, nail polish, brighter color tops. The best would be to come across as trans or a genderfucker but I don’t want to be called ma’am or she’d or verbally or physically harassed in anyways.
I realize that I’ll just deal with what comes. I have to accept myself as I am and let other people read me the way they read me. I wish I didn’t care. I wish that no one cared about my gender. I just want to get on with things.