What Does It Mean To Be A Woman?

Running down a dream that never would come to me, working on a mystery – going wherever it leads…

So, a recurring theme that has come up in my few therapy sessions is “what does it mean to be a woman?” Which, really breaks down to “what does it mean for me to be a woman?” because that answer is almost unanswerable unless it’s on a personal level. But I totally understand why you see a lot of trans women jumping in to the deep end of the femme pool, it’s how they answered that question. Not quite so easy for me (not trying to diminish their experience, mind you, only saying that if I was in to that stuff it’d be easy to just dive right in), because my journey is going to be much more finding my own style, a style that’s not really femme at all. I joke that I’ll probably look like a 40 year old goth that refused to grow up, but at the same time, that’s not far from the truth anyway.

Actually, I guess I could make it work...

Actually, I guess I could make it work…(not actually me!)

But its such a hard question. I feel almost resentful that I have to even answer it. I *know* I’m a woman, that should be enough. However, society is still stuck on the binary, and probably will be for awhile. And as much as it pains me to admit it: I do care what others think about me. Though that’s on a sliding scale (the better I know you, the more I care). I guess I’m just shooting for the occasional “ma’am” instead of sir in public. Maybe my personal idea of style will help there, as I might end up looking like a mannish woman. I could live with that, the woman part comes primary there. For instance, I was told a person I never met saw the picture I posted the other day, and thought I was a woman transitioning to a man. That’s a win to me.

I’m still faced with such a daunting task, at least to me.  I might be a woman, but my personality and wants and interests (in our current societal structure) skew male.  How the hell do I reconcile those two?  My current plan, which as soon as I can afford to test I plan to test, is to not really dress any differently at all (though I am flirting with adding skirts to my rotation eventually), wear light make up, and start wearing a bra to simulate the chesticle area (at least until I don’t have to simulate anymore, if that’s in the cards).  This is in addition to the little stuff I’ve started doing, of course…more feminine necklace, the earrings, longer hair, nails, etc.

The idea there is to see if my “mannish woman” theory has any weight, if you didn’t pick up on that.  It’s either that or “what the hell?” or “freak” which I pretty much assume is how people view me on a daily basis anyway.

But that’s just the exterior…there’s also personality.  And again, what’s really the answer?  I would hope nobody expects me to be all “bubbly” girly because ew, come on.  No offense, bubbly ones, you’ve every right to be that way, but if I started acting like that my closest friends would have me committed.  I’m simply not a shiny happy person (holding hands or not).  But how will that skew how people perceive me?  This one is a lot harder to gauge, its not something I can answer without actually finding out for myself.

And don’t get me started on my voice…

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About the ghost

Not quite what you think you see, in some ways more, in some ways less.
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9 Responses to What Does It Mean To Be A Woman?

  1. From an appearance point of view I guess you’re a bit like my friend S, except that she could never be seen as goth. But what I mean by that is she’s doing what you are, testing the water slowly and pushing the boundaries inch by inch until she finds her level.
    She has a “fluffy, girly” side to her too, but she keeps that under wraps indoors and is unlikely to go out in public that way for some good while yet.
    Me, I’m the opposite. I find I’m having to rein back on the fully femme clothing, and struggling to do so, (OMG, the things I would LOVE to wear when going out!), but at the end of the day we’re all different and it’s whatever makes us feel comfortable that matters.
    Personality-wise I’m the bubbly, expressive gestures type, she’s probably about half-and-half, and I guess you’re more reserved in that sense. But we’re all women just the same.
    You’ll find your level in both respects, Sandi, and I know you’ll be accepted because you’ll be just being you. 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

  2. the ghost says:

    I’ll be accepted as much as I am now, anyways. Which is all I really ask.

    And I won’t lie, there are days when I have to be held back from all the fully femme stuff, although it’s still all dark colors (except blues, really). And certain styles don’t appeal to me, either, but that’s pretty much normal. Really, the only thing holding me back is money. If it wasn’t grossly irresponsible, I’d crowd fund my social transition material. The clothes/accessories/shoes, the makeup, etc.

    Liked by 1 person

    • You know I was seriously considering crowd funding as a way of be able to finance the more expensive items like a pair of shoes, wig, one really nice dress, etc.
      I started looking in to it only to find they recommended that one should only expect one’s own friends to contribute and not rely on strangers to join your cause. Basically you had to have your own crowd to do the funding, which sort of counted me out and got me quite disheartened. 😦

      Liked by 1 person

  3. I love your style. The boots, your hair, I can’t even…..just gorgeous but a twist of bad ass to boot. Thumbs up from me! Thanks by the way for following me 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

  4. Isle Andor says:

    Similar concerns contributed to me not recognizing and accepting that I was trans for a long, long time. This time down the rabbit hole though, I actually dug deeper and learned a few things that let me break through that barrier and find myself. Specifically — while gender identity may influence gender expression, the two are not necessarily directly linked… and that’s okay. I can be trans-feminine, but not high femme. My gender identity doesn’t require validation by my interests or preferences.

    Julia Serano’s Whipping Girl is fantastic for highlighting this distinction (and explaining lots of other trans theory). She talks about her progression through cross-dressing, identifying as genderqueer, starting HRT, but still not putting herself into one of the binary gender boxes, to now identifying more fully as a “woman” — but when she transitioned, she says that she didn’t radically change her fashion or beauty routines beyond changing hormones. Reading that made me realize that being trans doesn’t come with any specific requirements about how to dress, act, or otherwise present myself out in the world. I can just *be me* — dress and act and look however I choose and still be 100% trans.

    Of course, I do want to change some of those things — I *want* to appear and be perceived socially in a more feminine context. The epiphany was only that I don’t *have to* change anything that I don’t want to change.

    Liked by 2 people

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