Congrats to Mikhail Barson for winning the TQ Nation / Babeland Toys contest for a Go Girl! Below is his winning essay!
All non microscopic forms of life exhibit gender expression, it is completely natural and biologica land above man made laws. From time to time, from the world of fish, invertibrates,and the mammilian world, creatures have acted the role of the opposite gender, an ambiguous, seek to mate with the same gender, or advertise themself as a different gender than their chromosomes reveal. Some sea creatures change gender mid life cycle. So what could possibley be wrong with a human doing quite the same. Some cultures have accepted this and call these people “two spirit” and let them be. Some cultures revere and not punish these people of ambiguous gender. After all, God lets people be born intersexed, and people chant “God doesn’t make mistakes”.
There are accounts of female penguins pair bonding for life. They produce no offspring, but one has a male role, and one has a female role. The other penguins accept this. Since a femal penguin lays 2 eggs a year and can only raise one, female coupled penguins often “adopt” other penguin couples eggs as their own and nuture this egg and raise the chick till it is grown. No problem.
So why have humans, with their 14000cc brains (if you undo the convolutions and measure it all) think they are so above nature. They are still part of the Great Ape family. And although apes form pair bonds and have a memory of over 150 individuals and are able to perform meaningful language through sign and have their unspoken laws and hierarchies, they have no taboo against gender expression.
This is a human pecadillo.
I was born intersexed. I had surgery to open a hypospadius sac that looked like testicles, one was removed, the other left inside. I also had ovaries and a uterus. At 21 I still did not menstruate and I was raised like a boy, but given a girl’s name because the pediatric urologist said to my parents “Its easier and cheaper to dig a hole than fix a pole.” At 21-23 years of age I was given massive doses of female hormones and Elavil, an antidepressant that can cause you to grow breasts. I went from no breasts to a C cup in three months and began to bleed. I bled dysfunctionally till I was 47 when my uterus hemmoraged because of a 6 pound tumor caused from hormones to make me “feminine”. I had been military, so I had NO choice. They released me with no benefits (innapropriate relations) because don’t ask don’t tell did not exist. My ovaries were not removed. Last year I had my remaining testicle removed due to cancer (from years of forced hormones) and now I am on testosterone. I have not had top surgery, I bind sometimes, but I find I do not need to bind or pack to be accepted as a man. I am not genderqueer, I understand the choice, I am more like someone’s retired drill seargent masculine. That’s always how I have been, that’s how I am now. I never tested my DNA to find out if Iam XX Xy XXY or any combination of those. It doesn’t matter. What matters in gender expression is that I am TRUE to my self and not living a lie to please people.
It was not easy. I got turned down for more than 50 jobs last year after background checks revealed I once had a female name and the applicant they liked so much and called back for a second interview and a job offer , the clean cut man in the suit and tie, had the offers suddenly retracted and got lumped into a category with the mentally diseased like “pederest” or “pervert”. I also was disowned by my family. Its not easy, but
I just soldier on……..