I’ve decided that I’m never going to waste another moment of my life arguing with my parents over my gender identity. I’ve tried to be accomodating; I’ve tried to be sympathetic to their concerns, but frankly, it’s become pretty apparent that there’s no point. Arguing with them on this subject is like arguing with a creationist; they’re already pathologically certain of the answer, and have no real interest in my counterarguments.
They claim that I’ve never behaved stereotypically feminine; I point out that gender identity is not the same thing as gender roles, and that they are welcome to pick up an introductory textbook on the subject (which, of course, they never do*).
They claim that I’m making a snap judgement; I reply that I’ve been sitting with my head up my ass for more than half my life, praying that the problem would go away. How many bloody years should I obsess over a question before reaching an answer? I’m guessing that the answer is “N,” where “N” is the number of years that it will take for me to decide not to transition.
They claim that I’m lonely and depressed and just looking for friends; I reply that if I were looking for friends, changing my life in such a way that risks my relationship with literally everyone I’ve ever met is a spectacularly bad idea.
They claim that I’m ruining my life prospects; I reply that I would rather reign in Hell than serve in Heaven.
They go away grumbling, and we tacitly agree not to adress the matter again. Then they come back a few months later, presenting the same old bullshit as if it’s fresh and insightful.
So from now on, this is how it’s going to be. If they hint at a desire to discuss this subject further, I am going to begin by asking them one question: “Do you accept that I am the ultimate authority on my own life?”
If they answer yes, then I will say: “Then in my expert opinion, I am a woman, and I will only be happy if I can live as one. Case closed.”
If they answer no, however, then I will tell them if they are going to deny me even the most basic agency, that there’s no point talking about it.
*My father in particular has a bad habit of being completely dismissive of the entire culture of the social sciences.