I don’t think it’s any secret that the discussion around LGBT issues is pretty contentious these days. Especially on the internet, it seems like no one can get a word in edgewise without causing a meltdown. People launch themselves at the topic of LGBT rights with such a sense of righteous superiority, speaking as though the subject can be explained in black-and-white terms. It can’t. Finally, I got tired of watching people try.
I think there are too many people using false information and personal attacks to shut down what could be constructive conversations about LGBT issues. It seems as though if you support LGBT rights, people label you a “liberal snowflake.” If you have questions about LGBT rights, you’re written off as “ignorant and a bigot.” These kinds of arguments don’t help anyone and don’t change anyone’s mind. They are destructive and divisive, nothing more.
Bearing all this in mind, I made a personal decision to do my utmost to be a careful listener and patient teacher on the subject of trans issues. This blog is my way of reaching out to people who don’t feel heard. My goal is to be a moderate transgender voice that most anyone can relate to. I want to build bridges where bridges have burned.
You might be wondering why I’m less combative than many LGBT allies and activists.
The fact is, I’m extremely lucky in that I’ve never experienced any hatred or derision for being LGBT. Not everyone is fortunate enough to be in my position. Despite my trans status, my family loves and supports me, as does my girlfriend’s family, my friends, and my employer. In that regard, I’ve been given a special gift, so I want to give something back.
That’s why I’m here.
Given that I grew up surrounded by so much love, I have a deep tolerance for people who don’t know much about trans people or the issues we face. “Purple State of Mine” is a judgment-free space where you can ask any question or discuss any topic. I will not be offended. You can broach any subject, and I will discuss it with you. You can express any concern, and I will listen. You will never be attacked or looked down upon.
Please be mindful, though, that not every trans person feels the same way I do, and please be mindful of why. Many trans people have been through a great deal throughout their lives. They’re tired. Most trans people grow up abused and ostracized for who they are, so they might not be as forgiving of your lack of knowledge. They might encourage you to do your own research. Remember, these folks have spent all their emotional energy on self-preservation. They might have no patience left for teaching. Please have compassion for them. Abuse is the most common experience for a transgender person.