On Trans Women and Male Privilege

by swapcorn

It started with an aversion to the barber. I hated the sound and sensation of the electric clipper, and I struggled to cope with the new environment of the barbershop. My parents quickly learned that hiring a hairdresser was the easiest way to get my hair out of my eyes. I saw the hairdresser less and less, until eventually I was only getting a small trim every year or so.

My hair was always a large part of my identity, whether I wanted it to be or not. According to our society's rules, boys aren't really supposed to have long hair. It didn't take long for me to pick up on this. My hair became my defining characteristic. Boys would frequently tease me for looking like a girl, and girls would completely ignore me for being 'weird'. I consequently found it very difficult to make any real friends. As a very sensitive and quiet child, it was hard to cope with teasing and banter. I didn't understand why other children had fun by being mean to each other. I didn't think being mean to people was very fun at all; after all, it certainly wasn't fun to be on the receiving end of it. I was ridiculed every single day for being gay without even having to come out. Older kids would often follow me home, shouting homophobic slurs. People would speculate about my genitals. I was treated not as a boy, but as a gender criminal deserving of daily punishment. Day in and day out, I was made to feel hated, perverse and alien. After a while, I began to find myself agreeing with the bullies. I was disgusting. I was weird. I was worthy of ridicule.

So naturally, when I hear so-called 'feminists' insisting that people like me ever enjoyed the benefits of male privilege, I scoff.

Mainstream feminism isn't too concerned with the difficulties feminine boys face.