“You look beautiful and quite naturally feminine”. I shared the party photos, and this was in an email response: so it is in the context of my idiosyncrasy, my peculiarity, my thing. I feel uncomfortable with the compliment. I feel tempted to say, “Patronising cow”, though it is a compliment: it is meant well. It is not meant to be patronising.
Why the discomfort? Well, perhaps it should not matter what others think. If I am pleased by “naturally feminine” I open myself to be distressed by the judgment “peculiarly masculine”. It still feels like a judgment on whether I am right to have transitioned. But- hey, it is supportive! It is Nice! I know I am right to have transitioned, and it is pleasant to have that confirmed and be called Beautiful.
My discomfort with the compliment comes from my residual fear and distress at being transsexual. No, presenting male was not, in the long term, an option for me, I had to express myself female though that was completely terrifying. Anne’s compliment, ten years on, still raises echoes of that for me: No, being Normal is not an option, however terrified I am I have to do this.
At the party, M introduced me to the concept of locus of control. Do you believe in fate, or that you make your own destiny? For me, it is more complex. I really wanted to be a husband and father. I wanted to be normal. I did not achieve that, I could not go against my Nature. (I would not have wanted to go against my nature apart from Kyriarchy, but in my situation that is what I desired.) I believe I do create my own destiny, but often it is different from my most passionate conscious desires. I feel dragged, kicking and screaming, to the best place I may be.