September 5, 2015
Blood and Visions: Womyn Reconciling With Being Female by Autotomous Womyn’s Press.
An anthology of writing and artwork by 10 womyn who stopped their female to male (ftm) transitions. Personal stories, political analysis, practical advice, and resources for womyn who struggle with dis-identification from their female reality.
Excerpt: “This process lacks the intoxication of transition, goes back into friction that rubs us raw and makes us feel what we’ve spent years trying to get away from. From this we learn power you can’t pick up at a pharmacy, that’s not made in labs, not made by men. Power that comes from being a womyn, being a dyke, power we’re not supposed to know about; many womyn have been killed or defamed for being wise to it. Power they tried to kill in us or trick us into calling male. We find it in ourselves and each other; in our friendships we find the strength to continue, to think and feel what we were taught was forbidden.”
Glossary of terms:
Autotomous: Describes the ability of an animal (or metaphorically, a womon) to release a part of her body/self and abandon it in order that she may survive attack or injury. Examples of autotomous animals are lizards (autotomous because of their tails), sea cucumbers (their ability to divide), and starfish (their arms). Some autotomous creatures regenerate the parts of themselves they have sacrificed, to some extent. The creature is never wholly the same but in most cases, she does survive.
Detransition: Ceasing transition, abandoning trans identity, and no longer trying to “live as” the opposite sex. This can include actions such as going off hormones, changing one’s name back to one’s birth name, no longer binding, no longer packing, etc. Detransition does not have to include any attempts to change one’s clothing choice, hair, behavior, or other things perceived as gender-markers, nor does it necessarily include plastic surgery or electrolysis to “reverse” the steps taken during medicalized transition. Detransition means stopping transition and beginning the work of reconciling with the reality of having a female body and having survived girlhood. Often used by those who no longer understand “gender” in terms of “identity,” but in terms of patriarchally-imposed sex roles.
Deeply moving and informative for all women concerned about the wholeness of our womanhood — and our sisterhood.
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December 31, 2014
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Butch Lesbian, Radical Feminist, and Former FTM: Heath Atom Russell on Gender Dysphoria, De-transition and “Brain Sex”
March 27, 2013
Self-described “Unapologetic Butch Lesbian, Radical Feminist and Former FTM” Heath Atom Russell covers a lot of ground in this video as she discusses stopping testosterone and healing from body dysphoria in a woman-hating world. She applies her personal experience to critique the medicalization of gender, YouTube trans-trending, the homophobia of “Queer Culture”, misogyny, lesbophobia, the theory of “Brain Sex”, and the process of becoming a proud woman.
Heath is extremely thoughtful and well-spoken and intends to offer her perspective to others who are interested in detransitioning as well as offering “a word of caution” to the public at large. In the video she discusses the rape and death threats she has received from some members of the transgender community for speaking publicly about her experiences at her blog, which is here: http://nymeses.tumblr.com/
Heath discusses the ill-health effects of synthetic testosterone and breast binders on female bodies, including her own and the cultural explosion of gender-based medicine, especially among youth.
Click here to VIEW.
In correspondence with GenderTrender, Heath stated that what she really wants readers to know is “that doctors don’t always have people’s best interests at heart” and “long term synthetic hormone use is not exempt from the never ending guinea pig treatment that, overwhelmingly, homosexuals are subjected to receiving”. She would like to see more discussion of misogyny, homophobia, and internalized lesbophobia in the LGBT community- particularly their effect on the creation and exacerbation of sex-based body dysphoria and body dysmorphia.
She expresses concern about the medical industry trend towards pathologizing gender-nonconformity in children, adding: “ I’d also like them all to be made aware that the criteria for gender dysphoria is so purposefully vague that it can target ANY child that doesn’t rigidly conform to patriarchal gender roles and that drugging children isn’t the answer – overcoming misogyny and homophobia IS the answer along with letting kids just be kids for a while before messing with their health!”
Heath mentioned that some trans viewers have complained that detransitioners should not be given a platform to speak because they are not medical professionals, or because hearing about detransition may “cause” trans viewers to feel suicidal. GenderTrender disclaimer: Heath Atom Russell is Not a Medical Professional. Please consult your personal physician, not people on the internet, for your health care needs. Also, here is a link to suicide hotline resources and support: http://www.suicide.org/suicide-hotlines.html
I want to thank Heath for everything she is doing. Most detransitioners either choose or are forced into silence which makes it difficult for individuals considering transition to get an accurate view of the diversity of experiences involved. Her video is highly recommended for all female transitioners and for anyone interested in transgenderism. Please give her your full support. Thank you Heath.
November 21, 2012
“I’m trying to just get off of it at this point. And my reason for that is because I am not wanting any more changes than I’ve already had. I think the changes that I did have snuck up on me pretty quickly and I hadn’t really thought about what it meant to pass at that point. And now I do pass. And I’m still at a crossroads with that in terms of it being something that I am comfortable with, and it being something that sort of negates an old identity that I am comfortable with that I still feel like I am. Like I still very much feel like a dyke. And so it’s hard being read as a straight white male. It’s got its privileges but it’s also- it’s been hard for me to relate to people just because – I look a little different now. And I think a lot of that was because I had insecurity about being butch enough in the queer scene and also I feel like a lot of people were taking T and I was- I wanted to fit in, so I took T too.”
“the worst part is, nobody in the community knows who I am anymore, so when I speak my mind and they yell at me, they just say, you don’t know, you’re cis you couldn’t possibly know.
but I know. I know too much and I wish I didn’t.
“I’ve spent the last couple of years obsessing over the idea of medically transitioning. For the past few months I’ve spent more and more time analyzing why I felt those things, and I’ve spent a hell of lot less time absolutely hating myself. It’s still a struggle because I’m not completely comfortable with my body, but at least I’m not lying to myself about feeling like a man anymore.
“They always say “there’s somebody out there for everybody!’
I have a hard time believing it. At least when I was calling myself a lesbian in the trans community there was this expectation that you could be a bit different, socially speaking. Now, I dunno. I realize now that I’m a heterosexual male. Straight women always want me to be more masculine, more like a real man. It’s not going to happen.
I don’t know, this maybe isn’t all that coherent, it’s just irrational thoughts maybe.
“There’s something brutally funny about, hormonally speaking at least, basically being on my third puberty. In all seriousness though, I need my natural hormone production to level out again. Mid twenties is just too damn old for this shit.
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