On Kindness and Transphobia [TW]

Someone from my past emailed me a few times this week. Claiming they were good listeners and wanted to have a relationship, “one soul to another”.

They then sent two emails following that, The first, on valentine’s day, defending my parents by saying they were merely imperfect and I’m overreacting about the abuse I suffered at their hands. The second, this morning, telling me that I will regret being trans and we should have an open discussion about my identity.

I told her to kindly fuck off, and she didn’t understand why I was mad and unkind.

When you start off a conversation with someone by saying their lived experience and identity isn’t valid, you lost the pretense of kindness and politeness and the benefit of the doubt. It doesn’t matter how “nice” you are when you say people are wrong for existing, it isn’t nice, it isn’t kind, it isn’t polite, and you deserve nothing less than the full wrath of whoever you told that to.

I’ve translated today’s emails so you see what I hear when I read this.

I asked her not to contact me after the first email. For someone good at listening, she doesn’t seem to understand boundaries. And this is a real-life example of how you don’t have even footing against people who spend their time dehumanizing you.

The reason I am posting this is because it helps me to dissect it and show you what I hear/see when people send me things like this and how cruel and dehumanizing it is. How pointless it is to try to convince them of my validity when they start from the place of trying to convince me not to be who I am.

I am kind, but I will not rollover for abuse, I will fight back, and then I will post the shit and explain what it is for everyone to see.

If you start off disregarding people’s existence as valid, you have waived your right to any benefit of the doubt and subsequent kindness.

I’m not even going to unpack how cruel that first email was in the first place, anyone who isn’t cis understands that by default and anyone who is cis, should go read about transphobia and how it effects people. I’m sure someone in the comments can get you started, but also google.

2 comments

  1. As an aperitif to counter the sour taste of transphobic ambush: I really love the blue hair.

    Of course, being somewhat gender indifferent myself, I think of transphobia as dumb. I also think that it might be something akin to a trigger response; “this person is changing in a way that will alter our relationship!!”

    I mean, it’s ok to process that – it’s not ok to think you have a say in it.

  2. Kieryn, I’m an elderly (71) woman, and I wish I had you in my life. I just discovered you this morning, and all that I’ve read from you has impressed me immensely. You’re terribly bright and clever and funny, — but I ache for you because of what adults have put you through all your life. It’s a wonder you didn’t seriously dread becoming an adult yourself, since your experience with them was so awful. Anyway, I just wanted to tell you that I’m going to try to follow you — that you make me feel good because you are the type of young person I HOPE will eventually take over the world. 🙂

    Much love, Jerri

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