Saturday, August 18, 2007

R-E-S-P-E-C-T My Womanhood

TransGriot Note: From a May 2004 TransGriot Column
Copyright 2004, THE LETTER

Aretha Franklin sang about, and I expect it.


I'm glad that there are other transsistas that feel the same way that I do and are willing to speak out about the disrespectful attitudes that we encounter while operating in the world around us.

Here's some advice to the 'gentlemen' that try to rap to us. If you wish to get to know me or any transwoman, just treat us as you would any other sista that you meet for the first time. Unzipping your pants and asking "How big is your d**k is a real turnoff. It's one of the things that annoys me on the occasions that I do go out to GLBT clubs.

Another thing that upsets me is to have some guy walk up me, grab his crotch and ask, "How much?" If you did that with a genetic sista, she'd slap you, and my reaction to that insulting query won't be as nice either. Just because some of my T-sistas may partake in paid extracurricular sexual activity doens't mean that you can assume I'm sitting in a GLBT club for the same reason. Nor can you speculate what genitalia I may or may not possess between my legs because I happen to be in a gay patronized establishment. The fact that I spent my formative years in a male body doesn't give anyone the right to disrespect me. You may not like me, but you will respect me as a human being. I expect nothing less.

I grew up in a male body, but I'm not a man. I am a woman. I'm deliriously happy to finally be able to say that. The way that I look at life, love and interact with people on this planet is filtered through a feminine perspective. I like going out on dates, getting flowers, and hanging out with brothers as much as my genetic sisters. I can talk about what happened this week on THE YOUNG AND THE RESTLESS just as easily as I discuss politics, sports or various other topics that pique my interest.

I went through a lot of drama to make my external appearance match the way I've felt internally since childhood. I did not travel down this pothole filled road to become someone's sex toy. I'm finally comfortable with my body and I'm ready to take my place in this society as an African-American woman. I want to contribute my talents to uplift my people while being cognizant and proud of the fact that I am transgendered.

Diana Ross said it best in an October 1989 Essence magazine interview. 'I never considered it a disadvantage to be a Black woman. I never wanted to be anything else. We have brains. We are beautiful. We can do anything we set our minds to.'

Well, I set my mind on becoming the beautiful Black woman that I am today. I didn't have the advantage of being taught from birth what genetic women learned about femininity from their mothers or grandmothers. My femininity has been acquired by observing my mother, gradmothers, sisters, aunts, cousins, and various women that I
admire. I also have the examples of myriad transgendered and non-transgendered ladies to inspire me to greater heights.

All that I and my transgendered sisters are doing is striving to become the best women that we can be. If we happen to turn some of you on in the process, then that's all good, too.


Prerna said...

i LOVE your blog and the way you write and the things you write about!

its so great to see other trans women of color writing analytically about our own self determination...

Monica Roberts said...

Thank you...hope you continue to stop by and peruse it.