I am a Female human being. I have never doubted that. Truth be told I am a feminist. That is to say that I believe I have as much right to legal status, education, property ownership and self-determined destiny as anyone. But more to the point, I am female not only biologically and legally but internally. I have never felt conflict between my biological gender and my true self. There are those that do.
I believe that the mind and soul and heart of a person is the place that the truth of gender lies. I believe that no one has the right to an opinion regarding another human beings gender identity. If someone identifies as female, they are my sister. And that is something worth rising up to defend. If someone identifies as male, they are my brother and they too deserve to be defended, the male of the species is noble and honorable and deserving of respect.
I know where I stand and who I am regarding gender. But that is not the entirety of the issue. There are aspects of gender that the world consistently has an opinion about and those are not so easily ignored. As a woman I am relatively “normal” in the eyes of the outside world. I appear to be a middle-aged, privileged, educated, middle-class, suburban, white girl, monogamous and heterosexual. “Nothing to see here people, she conforms to the norm.” Perhaps slightly odd politically (I am a Libertarian and have been since I registered to vote at the age of 18). Feminist of course, aren’t all American women?
But I do find conflict in that “norm”. Because I love dresses and I loved playing “mother” and I found power in the stories of the women in my story books. And because there are parts of my nature that I am discovering that do not fit how the world sees me, that do not fit the expectations of an educated, feminist, female of my generation.
It is those conflicts that I need to explore and to reconcile. Not to the outside world but rather with my own identity. Because somewhere along the way, I bought into the expectations and I am no longer willing to reject my true self in order to comply, in order to avoid conflict.