This will be quick post because I haven’t done much research on this topic, but I find it really interesting. Watching Oprah right now and she is revisiting past guests and one of her guests is a transgender man (F to M). Background: girl felt that she was meant to be a boy her whole life and told her mom this when she was 7. A few years later she began the transition and Julia turned into Jake. Jake now has a boyfriend – although in the beginning he wasn’t necessarily attracted to men, he said that he wanted to be a husband and a father – and is happy with how his life is. At age 15 Jake had a mastectomy, however now at age 19 he still hasn’t had a gender reassignment surgery and as female genitalia. Jake’s and his boyfriend have intercourse and his boyfriend, who is gay, is completely fine with Jake and everything that he has, or doesn’t have. Say what?!
You may be asking yourself, “OK Alex, where is the Behind the Cast in all of this?” Well, I’m not going to be transitioning into a woman anytime soon if that’s what you’re thinking, but I will say how interesting I find gender identity, so this BTC is just to express my interest in this topic. While I am gay and have known this my whole life, (but didn’t truly realize/admit it until I was 18) I never once wanted to be a girl or thought that I was meant to be something other than what my physical body was. I think sometimes people assume that because one is gay or lesbian they automatically understand everything “queer,” but this isn’t the case. I still find some things hard to grasp in the GLBT community and often find myself staring at people or situations out of pure curiosity, not because I think someone is a ‘freak show’, but because I’m just trying to understand why.
By now, all of my friends know that I like to dabble in the drag-o-sphere and take on an alter-ego named Shelita Buffet. AKA: I like to do drag. This doesn’t necessarily come from a desire to be a woman, but there is something about leaving Alex at home and bringing Shelita out that makes me feel like a new/different person. It’s like wearing a costume and playing a roll that people who don’t know you play along with. In a weird way, it’s a confidence booster – the second I put on that wig on and a pair of heels, my self esteem goes through the roof and there are times when I’ve never felt better about myself. But for all this personal euphoria, I’ve never wanted to get rid of what’s between my legs and make my drag persona a permanent thing. At the end of the day – or night – as much as I love a good pair of hidden platform stilettos or a shiny bracelet, I want to come home to a man and I want us to have a male/male relationship.
I’m not sure I’ll ever understand being a man who wants to be a woman who is attracted to women, or being woman who wants to be a man attracted to men, or being a man wanting to be a woman attracted to men, or finally a woman wanting to be a man attracted to women (sorry, that was confusing). But what I can understand is the desire to feel accepted as the person you know you are inside and I can sympathize with the desire to so badly be something other than what you know you are just so you feel “normal.” Anyway, just some food for thought – thanks momma O.