It’s a good segue into something I really wanted to address, anyway- gender stereotypes and how they DON’T fit with being trans.
I plan on keeping my hair long, all my life if it suits my fancy. I know it’s kinda one of those really traditional gender cues that, if your hair’s short and cut in a manly way, it’s easier for people to pick up that I’m a guy. But here’s the thing.
1) go around wearing what I wear or looking what I look like just to make things easier for everyone else. I do this for ME.
2) follow gender stereotypes, because if I think that’s what makes me a man, then I might as well just pack up and go home.
3) want to go through transition for the sake of being a man, I do it for the sake of being MYSELF.
That’s the thing that bothers me sometimes about the trans community. Yes, it can be fun to see yourself growing into your right gender, or it can become preoccupying, or an obsession really if you’ve been so hurt by your previous life that you want nothing more than to get away from the gender from that’s been trapping and poisoning your mind all your life. And really, it’s all understandable. But sometimes people become so wrapped up in “If I do this, or wear this, or act this way, or change this about my personality, THEN people will see me as a boy/girl,” with more regard to what they think other people need or want to see about them than what THEY want to do with their own lives.
And the dangerous thing about that is, if you carry that way of thinking too far, then you’re caught in the same old trap you were before, only it’s mirrored. Your body’s right, but your personality is fake. People are VISUALLY seeing the right person, but they’re seeing the soul of someone who is nothing more than a stereotype- and isn’t that what was wrong with your life before? They were stereotyping you to the wrong gender because they were seeing the wrong body, but now they’re stereotyping you due to seeing the wrong PERSON. And maybe they’re stereotyping you to the right gender this time around, but it’s for all the wrong reasons, isn’t it?
If you’re truly a man underneath, or truly a woman, then let your true self out along with that medical miracle of yours, and people will GET it. Don’t do something because it’s the “girly” thing to do, or the “manly” thing to do, but because it’s what YOU want to do. If you’re a guy, and you want to be a ballet dancer because it’s what you’re good at and it’s what you love, don’t let your gender stereotype demands get in the way of your dreams or you’re just a sequel to last century’s misogynistic oppression with a neat Sci-Fi spin on it.
Don’t be a cheap Hollywood sequel.
On the rather more specific topic of hair, there are a lot of guys around I look up to as being the portrait of masculinity who had long hair. A lot of bikers wear long hair, which is more or less my thing, Don Juan deMarco had long hair (I think) and he was the greatest lover in history, so I hear… How about Jack Sparrow? Guys would kill to be him, girls would kill to be WITH him, and he wears long hair (dreadlocks, I know, not too often a sign of femininity) AND eyeliner. How does he get away with it?
(But that’s another rant.)
I could continue. Now, however, I’m on to short hair. Let’s consider these masculine examples. Little old ladies.
It’s been a long time since I’ve seen a little old lady in real life who had didn’t have her hair cropped short. I’ll just consider my point made.
Point of all this is, you don’t need to follow every gender stereotype in the book. So often, the book breaks the rules itself. We say we’re soo much like cisgendered people, that we’re just normal like anyone else; well, cisgendered people usually aren’t afraid to break the rules a little, because they’re usually just that naturally comfortable and confident in their gender that they don’t have to go around proving it all day. They take their own genders for granted and assume everyone else does, too. We should definitely strive to be that confident in what we know in our souls.
I dare you to step out and do something that defies gender, and laugh in the faces of those who would dare to try and trap you back in one of those little pink or blue boxes.