We are not objects to have secret sex with, to discard and to laugh at on the radio or the gossip blogosphere.
We are worthy of being seen and are not dirty or shameful.
Thousands of words have been dedicated to analyzing whether such and such famous man is now suspect, merely because he took a photo with a fan who happened to be a trans woman.
This questioning has led many well-known men to adamantly defend their heterosexuality and has tarnished the reputation and careers of others.
I am not saying get him to pursue you by acting unavailable, I’m saying actually be unavailable.
By that, I mean fill your life with fun, meaningful activities.
In effect, we’re telling trans women that they are only deserving of secret interactions with men, further demeaning and stigmatizing trans women.
I’ve stood witness to many so-called scandals, mostly published on gossip blogs, where passing interactions with trans women spawn hundreds of headlines, particularly for a man with fame and social capital.
He recognized me as a woman, and my being trans did not negate my womanhood. Don’t get me wrong, I see our loving partnership as a blessing, but not in the same way others view it.
Our relationship is marveled at largely because most people do not believe that a man like Aaron should have to “compromise” his heteronormative social standing by being with a trans woman or a woman who is not “real.” It is rare for an openly trans woman – no matter how “passable” or attractive she is – to have a man who openly loves her, who has an unabashed desire to be seen with her, who proudly stands beside her — despite the stigma and other people’s curiosities and inappropriate questions.
Until we begin checking how we delegitimize the identities, bodies and existence of trans women and stigmatize the men who yearn to with us, we will continue to marginalize our sisters, pushing them further into socially-sanctioned invisibility, left in the dark to fend for themselves with men who don’t have the space to explore, define and embrace their attraction to various women. Be respectful of people’s identities, bodies and pronouns.