Mutilation

Why would trans women have operations, anyway?

I was horrified to hear that some teenage girls have their labia surgically reduced, to look more like young girls’ or more like the performers in pornography. Human bodies are beautiful, and human variation is enriching. They want to be beautiful and desirable, and imagine they are not.

I am hyper-feminine. Though I was told this was weak, sick, perverted, disgusting, ridiculous, illusory and misogynist, it is beautiful. Rimonim asked, why would transition be wrong? More or less, anyway, that is the point of the question. It would be wrong if it is a constrained choice, if I did it for the expectations of society, rather than completely freely for my own fulfilment. This is something I cannot know, because while it may be a free choice it may also be because there is the societal expectation: being trans is accepted by society in a way that being trans*- gender-queer, non-binary- is not.

A radical feminist, not fitting the “feminine” stereotype, might object to me claiming that my “femininity” makes me in any sense a “woman”. So I have my new, brilliant line. We are not “the shock troops of patriarchy“. We are asylum seekers, not colonists.

I don’t know how I would behave in a society free from gender norms. I am aware that surgery has a cost: risk, and loss of gonads.

Why would I want a colovaginoplasty when I am gynaephile? I do not want to accommodate a penis. I anticipate my opening, after I could not continue with dilation, will close up in the next couple of years, far later than I expected when I stopped. I might want to accommodate a finger, and that will not be possible, but whether that is worth cutting a piece off my bowel!!!!!! Having a general anaesthetic! Having further risks of a result less than I hope, and more despair!

Or I want it because it is a symbol, of my soul’s open, accommodating, receptive, welcoming nature, an opening at the centre of me like my open heart- unlike the closing, tight, restrictive opening I have now. A symbol of casting off my resistance to life, which has made me hide away. If that is what I want, I might be better practising opening my chakras.

I wondered what symbols I needed. I am Abigail, and would not change that. Right now I am wearing skirts or dresses all the time- yes, women wear trousers; no, I don’t care. I want to wear skirts. This is me asserting me, not by being “bossy” a “leader” but by being the opposite.

No, I really do not want a penis. That is not mere social pressure. None of my choices were social pressure, I am too thrawn for that. It is not just a symbol, it is the reality of who I am. I am happy with my decisions. But the option facing me, colovaginoplasty-

John Lavery, Evelyn Farquhar

4 thoughts on “Mutilation

  1. You know there is so much here to comment on but at the same time so much of it I should keep to myself. When you share your feelings this openly it is easy to get hurt with an unintentionally cruel comment. I think I will play it safe and say, We’ve never discussed your walk with God. Do you have the kind of relationship with him where you can ask some of these difficult questions?

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    • I have done, including praying the prayer “What the fuck do you think you’re playing at?” I feel God is happy with my transition, which felicitates my healing. I feel led by God. And when previously I gave up and it felt like I was lying down exhausted in a cold, unfriendly darkness, it felt like God put a blanket over me. I trust in God.

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      • I am very relieved to hear that. It sounds like you are doing fine and need to just keep putting one foot in front of the other then.

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    • Oh, and- you can say nothing I have not heard, read or thought before. I do not think you are intentionally cruel- do not feel constrained by my feelings. I would be interested in what you have to say.

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