18 June, 2009

our voices will not be silenced

i'm trying my best to update more often...

recently in the news - sonny and cher's child is transitioning from female to male (http://edition.cnn.com/2009/SHOWBIZ/06/11/ent.chastity.bono/index.html). i wish him the best of luck with his transition. i hope the media's attention to his transition will allow the public to gain a better understanding of trans people. although the media may also portray this in a negative light - at the very least i hope he's able to remain as private as he desires with his life and transition. here's a commentary on the story by jamison green (trans educator and author) (http://edition.cnn.com/2009/US/06/12/chastity.bono/index.html).

glbtqi (gay, lesbian, bisexual, trans, queer, intersexed...i'm sure i'm missing letters here) discrimination seems to be increasing - seems odd to say that something like discrimination is quantifiable, but according to recent statistics killings of glbtqi people have increased 28% since 1999. check out the article here. these statistics completely disgust me. it makes me sick to see that people will kill because they do not understand. there is more visibility for the glbtqi community these days, though as the article suggests, with more visibility comes backlash. visibility. backlash. visibility. backlash. ignorance = fear = hate = violence.

my familial "support" has been taking up a lot of my energy lately. while i am seeing growth in my siblings' acceptance and understanding, my parents' growth has seem to have come or gradually come to stop. the past year and a half has been very difficult with them - i've tried my best to remain open with them about my transition, however i am most always the one initiating discussions regarding my transition or trans issues, getting them reading material and dvds, etc...they seems to be everything but proactive. though i cannot say i have terrible parents because at the very least i still have parents and they are decent human beings - in the same breath it is incredibly difficult and painful to have people you love and trust and hold close to you who simply do not support you through a significant change.

i feel completely invisible to them.

they are refusing to see me for who i want to be seen as. while they do have 22 years of history with my old self, they are refusing to accept the universal truth that things change (granted this is quite the change...)...things still change, life is about change(s) - what would it be without it? with all of this i have experienced their disrespect, transphobia, fears, anger, discomfort...they want me to keep quiet, keep me in the closet (i'm already out...how can i go back in...??), keep the perfect, middle-class, white suburbia, white picket fence image of a family, keep the perfect image of their child, and keep the perfect image of what is male and what is female. this is bullshit. complete bullshit. i am all too tired of this fight. i will no longer be silenced or hidden. this is me being honest with myself for the first time in 22 years - the authenticity is not stopping. not now. not ever.

'first they came for the jews and i did not speak out -
because i was not a jew.

then they came for the communists and i did not speak out -
because i was not a communist.

then they came for the trade unionists and i did not speak out -
because i was not a trade unionist.

then they came for me -
and there was no one left to speak out for me. '
-pastor niemoeller (victim of the nazis)


No comments: