There is a quote that says, ‘some men are born in their body, some men fight for it.’ This is a truth that resonates with my struggles as an androgynous transgender person.
This quote also highlights the privileges of being a cisgender male, something that some transgender* people do not always benefit from by virtue of going against patriarchal notions of categorisations and conformity.
Sometimes i find myself at loggerheads because i identify as transman, then again my feminist politics makes me question what that entails. I was not socialised as a cisman,the gender assigned to me at birth means that my body and my mobility is policed left right and centre and weighed down with expectations.
No matter how torrid, i appreciate the lessons the experiences this body has taught me, because these help shape the man i am. It makes me question power and privilege, to be conscious of what it means to be perceived as a woman while living in a patriarchal society.
i’ll like to think of myself as (SMM) a Self Made Man, socialised in feminism. I am a man who does not benefit from patriarchy, i am a man who understands what it feels like to move around in fear of being violated, i am a man who knows the pains of having a period, i am a man who will experience labour pains. I am a man who does not fit the stereotypical notions of *male*. I am a man who sees no fault or shame in being feminine.
To quote Leslie Fernberg
“I actually chafe at describing myself as masculine. For one thing, masculinity itself is such an expansive territory, encompassing boundaries of nationality, race, and class. Most importantly, individuals blaze their own trails across this landscape. And it’s hard for me to label the intricate matrix of my gender as simply masculine.
To me, branding individual self-expression as simply feminine or masculine is like asking poets: Do you write in English or Spanish? The question leaves out the possibilities that the poetry is woven in Cantonese or Ladino, Swahili or Arabic. The question deals only with the system of language that the poet has been taught. It ignores the words each writer hauls up, hand over hand, from a common well. The music words make when finding themselves next to each other for the first time. The silences echoing in the space between ideas. The powerful winds of passion and belief that move the poet to write.”