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Problematic Language

Robin Winter

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Robin Winter

I think one of the big issues comes from within the community itself.  "Boy mode"  "Girl mode"  "boy brain" "girl brain"  "Target Gender" "Preferred Pronouns" and so on.

We are not becoming our gender.  We ARE our gender.  We're (some of us) just trying to be cuter versions of our gender ^_^

I did not have a boy brain that magically turned into a girl brain with hormones.  My brain hasn't changed in any meaningful way.  Have there been some changes?  Sure.  I like ketchup now.  I cry more.  I'm still really good at fixing things, I can still disassemble a dishwasher and put it back together, replumb a kitchen sink, and change a fluorescent light ballast.  I still suck at makeup because I think it feels icky and I don't get much practice.  I still love video games.  I still love a good rom-com.  I'm still the same person I always was.  And that person is female. 

When I was wearing men's clothing because I wasn't out yet, I was not in boy mode.  Because I'm not a boy.  I was never a boy.  I was a girl wearing clothing with "men" on the tag.  It didn't make me male any more than my daughter is in "Boy mode" because she wears her "Flash" shirt and skater shorts that happened to come from the boys section at walmart.  If I was in any "mode" it was "Fear Mode".

My gender is not a target.  I'm already there, and I always was.  It's not a goal.  The goal is to have everyone else respect it, and that's really not my work to do.

My pronouns are not a preference!  They are my pronouns. Period. Mandatory.

We are not changing except in some cases (not all, you're all valid and you all freakin' rock) to align our outside with what's already inside.

You are already your gender, whether that's male, female, non-binary, demigirl/boy, gender fluid, pangender, whatever!  If you make physical changes, great!  If you don't, bloody great!  You're still beautiful, and you're still you.  So embrace who you are!  Grab it and own it!  Using language that implies you are "Changing genders"  supports the bigots in their view that we are trying to be something we aren't, that we're fantasizing or that we belong back in the DSM. 

You're all magical. 

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Very well said, Robin! By the way, you are a very pretty lady and you have a pretty name as well.



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Talk about problematic language, I meant Hugs, not Higs! LOL

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Robin Winter

Haha, thank you.  Higs right back atcha.

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  • Dev pinned this topic
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I hope you don't mind, Robin.  I pinned your post to the top of the forum so it's more easily visible to new members.  It's just so well written and so on point I think it deserves as wide an audience as we can give it.  Thanks for taking the time to put it together!

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Robin Winter
Just now, Dev said:

I hope you don't mind, Robin.  I pinned your post to the top of the forum so it's more easily visible to new members.  It's just so well written and so on point I think it deserves as wide an audience as we can give it.  Thanks for taking the time to put it together!


I'm honored, thank you :)

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Carolyn Marie

Very well said, Robin.  Thank you for this.


Carolyn Marie

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I will add my agreement as well. Very well said!



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Yes I agree!  This is support for my argument that I haven't changed, it's just obvious now who I am.  

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Pronouns have certainly been powerful for me despite the fact i have always been myself.  When presenting male and trying my best to suppress my female nature i would have reacted very negatively to a" she"or "her".  Today quite the opposite.  A "he" can hurt deeply.  That doesn't mean i've changed.  I've always been myself.  My female nature has always been there no matter how much i had to hide it.  

On 6/10/2018 at 11:50 PM, Robin Winter said:

I did not have a boy brain that magically turned into a girl brain with hormones

I certainly agree with this statement and Robin's post but words have always had their power.  Maybe that is because i have too often allowed myself to be accept societies perceptions rather than my own reality.





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Robin Winter

Yes but that was due to a shift in your own thinking and your own acceptance.  I was upset by implications I was feminine when I was younger too, because of social pressure and because I knew they didn't mean it in a positive way. 


What I'm referring to is that our brains don't actually change in the way that I see some people suggesting. WE don't actually change.  We might grow, we might learn more of ourselves,  but we're not changing from male to female, or female to male, or female to non-binary.  Our gender is innate, and using language that suggests a choice is bad press, as is supporting gender stereotypes. 


Hormones don't make us better at some things and bad at others.  They don't change our behavior.  There are no boy things and girl things, only stereotypes.  If someone finds comfort for themselves in stereotypes, that's fine, but don't attribute it to a hormonal change, especially not in a space where people are coming to figure themselves out.  If one person claims they had all these fantastic changes from estrogen and they can't fix their car now but they can put on glamour makeup in the dark, somebody else is going to be thinking "What's wrong with me?  Why isn't this working?  Am I not trans enough?"  Using language like this can be invalidating to other identities.

Words do have power, yes, because in this context they're driven by perception.  Let's make sure people are seeing us in the best light possible.  Not just Transwomen and transmen, but the whole spectrum of gender. 

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Robin Winter

Yes, hormones can effect emotions, I didn't even bring that up.  I said hormones don't contribute to a change of your innate gender, and I said that one's abilities to perform stereotypically gendered tasks is not dependent on hormone levels.  Because they're stereotypes.

The point of this post was not to dispute the medical effects of hormones.  It was barely even about hormones, that was only one example in the broad scope of this topic.  It was about stopping to consider the language we use and to ensure that it represents us, ALL of us, properly.  We're people, we're valid, we're all unique. Spreading ideas to support our own fantasy of what it means to be our gender can be damaging to other people. 

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Robin Winter

It's ok, what you're saying is important and valid, just not really what I'm getting at with this topic.

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Robin...  You just described exactly the place my head is in right now. When I go to doc they use my birth name because the State of California's identity law says your Insurance Card and Driver's License NAME match. No nicknames or Middle names. I go by my middle name Michael at the moment.


So, until July 12, when I get my "Court Odered" documents, the name on DL will be Kevin(a boy). On the 15th at DMV pronouns are in black and white and/or magnetic ink and will be honored or else!




Nobody likes getting a "Southern Fried" tongue lashin'!?

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