Changing Perception

A few weekends ago, my friend invited me out to an event at the lesbian bar. It’s been a while since I went out to a mostly gay and lesbian space. Last time, I was feeling extremely dysphoric due to the fact that I was misgendered the whole time.

This time was completely different. I actually felt pretty invisible. The lesbians pretty much ignored me, not so much of a smile or even a nod. It was pretty much the same with the gay men, too. It was very strange to feel like an outsider in a community that I used to feel so comfortable in, especially while I was in the military.

I have mixed feelings about this. One one hand, it’s nice to know that I’ve progressed so much in my transition that I’m pretty much seen as a guy now, but on the other hand, I feel like I’m not a member of that community anymore. I don’t get that silent acknowledgement from lesbians anymore when I’m out and about. I’m not sure if that’s even a thing among gay men.

I don’t really feel like I fit in with straight men, either. Ever since I joined the CrossFit gym, I actually feel more comfortable with the women in the gym. Whereas before transitioning, I used to feel more comfortable hanging out with the guys. I’m not sure if it’s just a numbers game. In the military and in most of my classes in school, there have been more men than women, so I had more friends that were men. But in the gym, it seems as if there are more women than men at the times that I am there. So maybe that’s why I am more comfortable around them?

It’s interesting the path that life leads us. Maybe as I continue further into my transition, this will be a non issue. I think sometimes (or a lot of the time) I’m still really self-conscious about how I am perceived by others. I still have this picture of myself in my head of me pre-transition. When I look in the mirror, I’m reminded of how I really look. But, I don’t see myself all the time, so the old image of myself is still there most of the day. I think my own perception of myself is taking longer to change than anyone else’s perception of me. It’s something I never thought about before as an aspect of transition. I haven’t seen any others talk about this either in blogs or vlogs.

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4 comments

  1. I don’t blog about trans stuff, but I follow lots of other trans people, and often comment on trans topics. I have actually read others saying this same thing, and I have felt it myself. In particular, I heard lots of trans-guys bemoaning the loss of a lesbian solidarity.
    Self perception is a really weird thing. Pre-transition, and when I was younger, I was way confident about myself. In order to transition, I had to accept that people didn’t see me as what I thought I was, and that I really had no accurate perception of myself. Post-transition, I questioned myself constantly, and became self-conscious for the first time in my life. I am finally just starting to get over that. I still question my own self-perceptions.

  2. You know I have to agree with you here. I always felt part of something once I found the lesbian community and made lesbian friends. But now, I look like a guy, sound like a guy, and feel more and more like a guy. I don’t fit into that lesbian ideal anymore. My lesbian friends are amazing and have always accepted me. Even when I wasn’t sure who “me” was. I have never really fit in with gay guys. I have gay male friends but it’s not a community I got involved in. I have always fit in with straight guys. But now that I am in flux, to a degree, I am not sure I feel comfortable there either. It’s hard. And I only realized on the weekend that I am still trying to find my own feet and where and how I can be comfortable. So it is hard for me to think that others are comfortable around me.

  3. Interesting @ that feeling of no longer fitting into a community we were part of…I’m just starting my transition. Only a 3 weeks into taking T. I’ve had mixed responses within the gay village on the island I live to my transitioning. Gay mates have been great and on the whole so have the girls…it’s weird what peeps focus on. Like I don’t intend to have bottom surgery…some g/fs have questioned why then…smh…I’m very open and don’t mind questions. Those sort though I now ignore. Sorry got sidetracked; I too have felt like an outsider within my own community. It’s a bizarre feeling…a disconnection in a way. I’ll be traveling soon anyway and meeting new people as who will only know me as “Pete”. As time goes on I’m guessing I’ll find my place again in a community that accepts me as me…without any labels. Wishful thinking perhaps; I am forever an optimist!

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