Passing as male is ruining leaving the house with my family

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Holden14
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11 Dec 2016, 4:55 pm

Hello :) I'm born female, probably some sort of non binary identified, and I told my mum a few months ago that I'm 'confused about my gender' and she took it very badly and was angry (I don't think it's relevant to go into the details of why she was angry). I have short hair and wear men's style clothing and the majority of the time people I don't know assume I'm around a 13 y/o boy I think (I'm 16). This doesn't bother me personally, in fact I quite like it, but it causes some comments like:
'Is this your son?' (to my parents)
'And for you, sir?' (in a restaurant)
'The men's is that way' (about toilets)
I hate when this happens because it reminds my mum of how my gender is all weird and the fact that she's angry with me every time. It probably makes her sad and stressed when this happens. But I don't know what I can do about it. It's so bad that I've begun to try and avoid leaving the house with my parents at any time if we're going somewhere like a restaurant where I might get gendered. I'm considering growing out my hair but I don't want to do that because I like having short hair. Has anybody got any advice or been in a similar situation?


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13 Dec 2016, 5:40 pm

This sort of problem seems very common in families that have a gender non nonconforming nonbinary or transgender offspring, where the parents have a problem with the nonconformity. A lot of people (especially older ones) don't understand gender nonconformity, all they know is what they were taught: the gender binary where all people are gendered by their private parts (genitals) and that there is nothing other than this rigidly defined binary with all its required dress and behavior codes and whatnot. Many people are so locked (brainwashed) into this system that they are dependant on it to function, and can become panicked or destabilised if there is any divergence from the standards, and they don't know how to function outside of it. Sorry if I'm confusing, I ramble because I don't know how to explain this well.

Your family should accept you for who you are. But they might not be able to be convinced to, or might need a lot of time and learning. If it gets so bad that you end up being threatened with being kicked out or wanting to run away from home, things may get very bad, and it might be better to conform until you can move out, because being homeless and transgender or gender non conforming can be very rough and dangerous. I don't know if I have any better advice. Someone else might have a better answer.

Well, I hope your family can learn to accept your gender identity.



Drake
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13 Dec 2016, 9:56 pm

Are you okay to dress unmistakably female? That would surely solve the problem of being gendered male if you're okay with being gendered female. I would think that more reliable than long hair since men sometimes have long hair too. And it's also not permanent either, you can go right back to your preferred clothing under normal circumstances.



green0star
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14 Dec 2016, 8:20 am

I had this problem really heavy in my late teens. I legit went through a small gender identity crisis.



EclecticWarrior
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18 Dec 2016, 8:46 pm

I'm having the opposite problem. I'm nonbinary leaning masculine (transmasculine?). I'm not out yet but I'm still trying to pass as masculine/neuter in public. I've cut my hair and wear androgynous/male clothing. Unfortunately, I have two big markers of femininity and without a binder have tried layering. Nope, still get called "madam" and "lady".

One of the reasons I'm not out yet is my mother. She's accepting of LGBT stuff in general but when her child (me) mentioned they're bisexual she's just passed it off as a phase. We've discussed transgender stuff a couple of times, the most recent being this evening. I had an urge to come out during the most recent discussion on trans issues but couldn't. We have been discussing the size of my breasts and I have brought up that I want them off. Maybe I could suggest a sports bra or a binder as a stopgap but that could tip her off to my real intentions.


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green0star
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21 Dec 2016, 9:08 am

EclecticWarrior wrote:
I'm having the opposite problem. I'm nonbinary leaning masculine (transmasculine?). I'm not out yet but I'm still trying to pass as masculine/neuter in public. I've cut my hair and wear androgynous/male clothing. Unfortunately, I have two big markers of femininity and without a binder have tried layering. Nope, still get called "madam" and "lady".

One of the reasons I'm not out yet is my mother. She's accepting of LGBT stuff in general but when her child (me) mentioned they're bisexual she's just passed it off as a phase. We've discussed transgender stuff a couple of times, the most recent being this evening. I had an urge to come out during the most recent discussion on trans issues but couldn't. We have been discussing the size of my breasts and I have brought up that I want them off. Maybe I could suggest a sports bra or a binder as a stopgap but that could tip her off to my real intentions.


That's pretty brutal but being the fact she's more accepting of outsiders she's more likely to come around. I am asexual and genderqueer and I could never tell my family the truth because they would never accept it.



Holy Roman Emperor
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17 Jan 2017, 9:59 pm

Have you considered purchasing a wig which you would use when you go out and about with your parents? You should not have to do that, but we must keep in mind that this world is not perfect.
Many people are not as intelligent as you and I, and many are more intelligent.
Good luck, sweetheart.



green0star
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23 Jan 2017, 10:29 am

Holy Roman Emperor wrote:
Have you considered purchasing a wig which you would use when you go out and about with your parents? You should not have to do that, but we must keep in mind that this world is not perfect.
Many people are not as intelligent as you and I, and many are more intelligent.
Good luck, sweetheart.


That's actually not a bad idea. I have several wigs that I use for cosplay and while many of them are crazy colors I do have a few "normal" colors in the mix.