This is what I’m always on about. The problem with gender identity is that it’s largely based on a social construct of what it means to be “male” or “female”. If I am biologically male but I believe my gender is female, what is it about me that makes me feel female on the inside? What defines the difference between feeling male and feeling female?
Much of it, I am convinced, relies on what society tells us are the requirements to be male or female. Look at those gender identity tests such as COGIATI and SAGE, which ask you a series of questions about your personality traits and abilities to score how masculine or feminine you are. Answer with too many “girly” answers, and you’ll be told that you are a good candidate for hormone replacement therapy (HRT) with or without sex reassignment surgery (SRS).
So these tests, and others like them, assume that if you are good at math you have the mind of a boy; if you are good at reading facial expressions you have the mind of a girl. I have battled this for years, almost believing it when I was younger and let other people tell me what to think. I like to wear dresses; I tend to be more nurturing and sympathetic than my male friends; I cry more easily; I prefer games and leisure activities that involve the mind more than the physical body (i.e. roleplaying games and puzzles). I even enjoy singing show tunes. To this day people in the transgender community tell me I’m just denying the truth that I am transgender, that I must have a strong inner desire to be a woman, that I’d be so much happier if I’d admit that I’m really a girl and go all the way with surgery.
To them I say, poppycock. I love being a man. There is nothing about my nonstandard traits that says by law I must be a woman. What kind of backward century do we live in where men and women are forced into rigidly defined rules for how they must behave?
So I can fully sympathize (another “females only” trait) with this young lady who is perfectly happy being the girl she was born as, who happens to choose doing things that society insists are activities for boys. You go, girl!
Lisa Selin Davis: My Daughter Is Not Transgender, She’s A Tomboy