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A Rose by Any Other Name....

What about people who are not aligned with the sex they were assigned at birth. It seems so odd to say, “assigned at birth,” like somewhere there is someone handing out genitalia, lol.

What if the parts we were born with didn’t actual define who we are either to ourselves or the

world? People live on a spectrum of masculine and feminine qualities both in general and in

different situations. We, as a society, made up what and how boys and girls are supposed to be.

This is especially damaging for those of us who don’t identify with the parts we were born with.

Society is saying you must behave and feel one way and your being or essence is telling you

that doesn’t feel right.

Transexuals are people who identify differently than their body parts would indicate. Trans

literally means “on the other side of.” If you’re confused by the terms, a “transman” is someone

born with female parts but identifies as male and a “transwoman” is a person born with male

parts that identifies as female.

To make the conversation even richer:

  •  there are the body parts you were born with (your sex)

  •  there is how you identify (your gender)

  •  and who you are attracted to (hetero, homo, bi, pan…)

It’s like the old joke, a guy comes up to a girl in a bar and declares, “I just realized I’m a woman

trapped in this man’s body.” “Really,” she replies interested to hear more. “Yes…but I also

realized, I’m a lesbian!.”

Gender is a social construct that we have bought into as fact. Our society today clings to a

binary myth for pretty much everything. It is either right or wrong, good or bad, true or false,

male or female. But that leaves us in a trap. We must find a truth and that truth must be the only

truth. But gender, like almost everything, is on a spectrum and not black and white.

One writer said, “There are many different gender identities, including male, female,

transgender, gender neutral, non-binary, agender, pangender, genderqueer, two-spirit, third

gender, and all, none or a combination of these.” And this diversity makes the world an amazing

and rich place to live and interact with all types of people.

This has been true since the beginning of time. We have just started to put language to it. The

danger here is that how we define concepts starts to color how we see the past and view the

future. For me, I believe that the terms male and female, as a social construct, limit us.

Sex appropriate colors didn’t come into vogue in the US until the 20 th century! In 1918 it was

pink for boys and blue for girls (pink being a “stronger” color), then in the 1940’s it flipped.

Colors do not inherently indicate anything, they are neutral.

I was a tomboy growing up, climbing trees and wearing pants. If I had decided I was actually a

boy and started to hate my girl body (which is funny because we all basically are not happy with

our bodies anyway in today’s world) than I might have wanted to change it. But clothing and

actions do not determine who I am.

What if children were allowed to develop who they are without society picking what colors they

should wear, what activities they should participate in, and how they should present themselves.

In fact, what if we changed up the language from male and female, past masculine and feminine

energy, to a place that didn’t have to do with gender. Perhaps energetic and magnetic, who


Let’s not have the language we use control how we relate to each other. Let’s respect and

embrace the rich diversity of the human race, provide profound listening to ideas different than

our own, and grow together rather than apart.

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