A tale of separation, sorrow, and sighs
Being neutrois, it’s hard to naviagte uncharted seas. And society is one of them deep oceans. Luckily I’ve come to several important conclusions already.
After top surgery, I finally have the body I want. (I do, sans the six pack, but I’m working on that, right after I’m done with this recovery.)
Being neutrois, or neutral gendered, I wish my body to be as neutral as possible – to be devoid of any primary and secondary sex characteristics. Being female-bodied is quite fortunate in my opinion, since I don’t have to deal with things like facial hair, balding, a deep baritone voice, hairy legs, hairy chest, hair everywhere else under the sun and under the shade, and of course, the inconvenient eeny-weenie. But being a female means I was granted not one, but TWO small-medium sizeish round thingies where my chest should be. This has been effectively remedied.
And of course there are those things which I cannot change, like my height, unless I try out one of these.
Then there are things which I could potentially change, but would very likely come with unwanted side effects. For instance, I can change my fat-muscle distribution, resulting in a less-femaled contour like narrower hips, by taking Testosterone. But then I’d have to deal with the above unwantedness list, mainly hair and voice, and hair. Back to square one. So I’ve opted to avoid the T all together. I can curb the curves through exercise, but I can’t hide a five o’clock moonshadow.
Socially, I’m still female, and absolutely I hate it. Everytime I hear a she or a miss, oh and the worst is ma’m, my dysphoria (euphemism for extreme distress caused by this specific social situation) is instantly activated. Buttons have been pushed, internal lights go off, ocean levels rise, ice caps melt – you get the idea.
While I am neutrois, I would say that I tilt more towards the male side than the female side. Here’s the term I learned: Transmasculine Neutrois. The cause for this slight preference remains unknown. Being raised as female, it’s possible I gravitate towards the male side purely in an attempt to shy away from the femaleness. I also believe that it’s because most designated-male activities are not all that male, just unisex, whereas designated-female activities are strictly and stereotypically female. Compare running track to dancing ballet, or wearing pants to wearing skirts, and you get the idea. There are other theories for this tilting, such as the slight shift in the Earth’s axis as it rotates around the sun, the natural asymmetry in our internal organ strucutre, and my right-handedness. But really nobody knows why this is so, yet.
It bothers me a lot to be identified as female, whereas being socially male identified would bother me less, if hardly at all. At least, I assume that to be the case. I’ve read of a few other neutrois who disliked being male identified, and having never fully tried this out, I can’t definitively conclude anything yet. However, change is not instantaneous nor without effort, and that is the most worrisome part.
After having written extensively about pronouns, a major “a-ha!” went off in my brain. Pronouns are just the tip of the iceberg – it’s what people can see, even though most of that chunk of ice is underwater. Why am I so concerned about pronouns, when the real issue is that of social identity?
The question then becomes, would I really, truly be comfortable socially identifying as male? That is, is that option attractive just because I haven’t tried it yet, or because it’s the only escape I have from the current one, or because it would be a genuinely good fit?
But really, what is ice except frozen water, floating on more water? Distinguishing between different states of the same element will indubitably lead to confusion. Hence why the above iceberg does indeed boil down to a simple explanation of pronouns.
You’ll have to patiently wait for the next installment of A Neutrois Introduction to find out what happens. Stay hydrated.