I’ve been trying to work on this one for awhile, but most of my attempts were quite aggressive. So I’m trying a rewrite.
I’m Canadian, and in this country we spend a lot of time and hand wringing on diversity and inclusion. Two important things that in peoples mind range from unnecessary to the very fabric of the nation.
So from a young age we’re taught here that different voices matter. What I have found interesting, is that we generally have a hard time valuing those voices, and understanding what these different voices offer.
So I can’t talk about everyone experience, but I can talk a little bit about what its like to have a trans-tinted world view. It’s not a particularly fun experience, but it has its uses.
Trans people have to be able to read a room very quickly, this goes for a lot of other minorities. What I do believe is a little different is that the journey to self acceptance for a trans person involves a lot of introspection, and a lot of time understanding yourself. This is not a common trait in people.
If your personality is an onion, gender isn’t the core, but its a pretty damn close to it. So to unpack and find yourself involves digging pretty deep inside yourself, and as I’ve talked about before, you can’t really put it all back together the same way.
Nor would you want to.
The survival skills that mix in with your social skills are honed in this process. To present counter to your nature out of a need for survival because of the nonacceptance and hatred around you requires endless patience and a near fanatical devotion to the illusion. Sometimes you find yourself believing the fiction you’ve created.
Its not healthy in the moment, but afterwards you don’t forget what you’ve learned. You move on, with a skepticism of and insight into those around you that is generally unparalleled. So why does this matter? Because any organization or family, or group or whatever needs people with different skills. Trans voices offer such a rich perspective because we are not a separate culture ourselves but both a participant and an outsider wherever we go. until trans people are accepted for who we are we are forced to deeply understand the world around us, and that’s a huge advantage. We just need a chance to use it.