I love questions. I’m just putting it out there. It’s why there are two forms to contact me floating about the blogosphere.
And before I start out on my slightly awkward “it’s OK, I don’t bite” message behind my thinkings for today… I’d like to do a mini mention. I want to thank all the brilliant people who have taken the time to read my ramblings, and to comment with such kind words. Also to those who knew me in the Real World and who have contacted me to acknowledge my trans things in the best possible way: it’s given me faith in people yet. Even the smallest little “Like” on a trans-themed post on Facebook is enough, and I’m grateful for every one. Even if I’m not so good with the face-to-face emotional thing, rest assured that it is appreciated.
And so this post is a just-in-case-type response, for anyone in real life to whom it might apply. If it doesn’t apply to you, I’d advise against reading, simply because it’s long-winded, rambly, and probably painfully boring to read if you don’t need to.
I fear that this will sound more adolescent-angsty than I originally planned, but my moods have been going downhill lately, and I lack the energy required to edit it all out… so apologies in advance if none of this makes sense.
The following badly-worded encouragements are not aimed at those mentioned above, and so I’ll do a little split so as not to rant in the ears of those who don’t deserve to have it inflicted on them. And here it is…
I’m one of those people for whom feedback is important. No, scratch that, it’s essential. I can’t read minds, surprisingly enough, especially when the people I need to reach are several hundred miles (and a good few computer screens) away. Nor can I read between the lines.
So it’s always hard when I need contact and yet I don’t want to pester people; it’s like trying to catch a ghost. I always end up wondering. Overthinking. Dwelling beyond belief. Too. Much. Thinking. But please be aware that it’s not a choice to be coming out through the Web. I’ve only been out as trans since after uni started, and I don’t want to have to shove it in anyone’s face without them having any clues beforehand.
Don’t get me wrong, if anyone’s managed to miss it by now (although given my posting habits, I can’t imagine such a possibility) and starts mispronouning me or whatever, I’m not going to stand there awkwardly and complain when they’re not there. I’m not ashamed of my trans status, and I’ll correct people – calmly – if necessary. My only point is that I’d rather not have to. It’s just discomfort all round if I do.
The trouble I’m having is the silence on the other end of the connection. As aforementioned, I’ve already had some fantastic responses, but many have been silent throughout… and some are stubbornly staying so.
I like to think I’m a fairly patient person, most of the time anyway. The simplest case in point would be surviving life at an all-girls’ school for 13 years without killing anyone; that’s a fact I’m rather proud of. I do get annoyed easily, especially when my mental health takes a turn for the worse, but it hasn’t stopped me trying. Yet. People have yet to break me completely, and things are looking up.
However… silence kills me. I know there are always going to be people out there who will decide against acknowledging, just so that when they see me next, they will get to watch my reaction as they repeatedly disrespect my choices. Purely for entertainment’s sake. And I’m fairly sure some of them are already lurking out there, watching from a distance and having a good laugh at my expense… hopefully uni will help on the maturity front. My Aspie Mentor says it can still take more years than uni can offer. Fingers crossed, eh?
But this kind of silence is the niggling one: the one from people who you would expect to react in the right way, if there is such a thing. And it’s not like I can go over and knock on said humans’ heads with a hearty: “anyone home?” to get the message across. Although, it could be fun. Let’s call that Plan B, shall we…?
My trouble is that since there’s been Complete Nothingness from some, I don’t know whether my reaction is justified or not. Here are some possibles:
- Not on t’internet enough to have kept up with it all.
- Just too many friends with too much activity to see my humble posts floating around cyberspace.
- Not enough interest in, you know, other people.
- They can’t deal with what they’re reading and need more time to process.
- They’re disgusted and want no more to do with a Freak Like Me but can’t even stomach the thought of sending a message my way.
- Too much input, not enough knowledge to cope.
- Accepting, just not sure how to word it.
- So utterly cool that they don’t even see why it needs to be such a Big Deal (hint: it doesn’t).
And so on. While I hope it’s one of the latter two in all cases, I fear that it isn’t.
So here comes the main point of this post: please let me know what you’re thinking. If you’re having trouble dealing with it, then please let me know. It’s disrespectful and frustrating when people refuse to accept it or even try and understand it, but it’s far worse (for me, at least) to refuse to even acknowledge it and simply try and avoid it at all costs.
Again, don’t get me wrong. If you have no intention of respecting my choices, then I’m not going to respond with kindness overflowing. I reserve the right to judge, because it doesn’t take much effort to accept someone for who they are. Sorry, but it doesn’t. But at least it gives me closure, and possibly a chance to help you understand it and dispel some myths that might be getting in the way.
If you refuse to accept it, then tell me. I’m unlikely to have much more to do with you afterwards, but at least we both know where we stand.
But questions are good. They’re great, in fact. And I’m always happy to answer them. The only rule I have is not to ask me something which would make you hugely uncomfortable if someone had asked you the same thing. Which is fair, I’d like to think.
I’m only making a Big Point of this because I’ve been getting frustrated with some reactions (or lack thereof) recently. Anyone brought up to understand manners will be with me on this. It is rude not to give an explanation for your behaviour, especially if it could be taken badly in the first place.
And a lot of said behaviour has got me thinking. While it’s happened before, and admittedly it irritated me just as much each time, I wasn’t out as trans then. So, now that I am, I can’t help but think: “is it ‘cos I’m trans?”…
That doesn’t sit well with me.
And so, I repeat, if you don’t understand but want to, send me something. Let me know. I like typing essays. Everyone knows this by now. And I’m happy to type essays for anyone who is willing to make the effort.
Just let me know. Please. I’m losing respect for people by the second, and I don’t want to, but I can’t help the way my brain works. Correct me. Please.
Questions are always good. So send some my way.