all the way to pony island

Oct 15

Anonymous said: They probably miss you too.

Ew.

Oct 14

Anonymous said: Who do you miss?

Everyone I ever dated.

Oct 08

Replace last slide with “but then I still fucking miss you”.

Sep 25
fcyeah:

These are some of the key statistics that have come from the From Blues To Rainbows Report[pdf here] on the mental health and wellbeing of Trans and Gender Diverse Young People in Australia that was launched on Tuesday! The Age published an awesome article about it on Monday too!! You can download the PDF of the report from the Latrobe Uni Trans Community publications page here :D

This is an awesome study but I hope people realise and acknowledge that “the majority of young people indicated that they were assigned female at birth (72.5%)” when discussing it.

fcyeah:

These are some of the key statistics that have come from the From Blues To Rainbows Report[pdf here] on the mental health and wellbeing of Trans and Gender Diverse Young People in Australia that was launched on Tuesday! The Age published an awesome article about it on Monday too!! You can download the PDF of the report from the Latrobe Uni Trans Community publications page here :D

This is an awesome study but I hope people realise and acknowledge that “the majority of young people indicated that they were assigned female at birth (72.5%)” when discussing it.

Sep 25

What about the intersex people?

bubbly-suffer-girl:

A while ago I read a post by a TWEF titled “Well What About the Intersex people”. Now a lot of people ate that shit up because she was intersex and her point seemed pretty valid. The problem? Well it was from a TWEF, and every single intersex trans woman knows that TWEFs don’t give a damn about intersex trans people. So what I writing about today is well what about the intersex people?

Thing is like we matter, we exist, and we aren’t a tool in your ideological battle. Whether it’s TWEFs pretending that they care about us to win imaginary points over the “genderists”, CAFAB trans people who try to use “the oppression of the intersex’ to further their transmisogyny, my own sisters using us for rhetoric, or just random asshats who don’t know a thing about us, people like to ask “what about the intersex people”.

I’m both a trans woman and intersex. So I live this shit everyday. Your 8th grade concept of sex is bullshit. There it is. If that shatters your world good. I’ve written about it before so I’m not going to get into theory about how sex is gender. Tonight I’m just going to focus on the reality of being an intersex person.

For starters, yeah being trans and being intersex are two different things. Secondly my existence and the existence of other intersex people is not insignificant. There upwards of more than 75 million of us alive on this planet. We are not an anomaly, we are not useless outliers. What we are is living proof that gender essentialist notions of sex are a western fairy tale. Sex is not a binary, sex is not a spectrum, sex is a lie. Thirdly dyadism is a thing and dyadic people both cis and trans need to shut the fuck up and listen. #dyadism should not be filled with dyadic people talking about dyadism.

Pretty much dyadic people of all kinds use us as a prop; stop it. TWEFs we know you don’t actually care about intersex people because you don’t give a damn about all intersex people. Dyadic CAFAB people need to stop trying to use us as weapons to enact transmisogny (same goes for intersex CAFABs). Dyadic trans women I know you all are capable of talking about how sex is gender and how your bodies are female without pointing to us. You can also look to amplify our voices instead.

Just if you take anything away from this, don’t use intersex people as a prop and don’t fucking ask “what about the intersex people?” unless you’re actually ready to listen. I’ve had way to many fucking dyadic people tell me to “ask an intersex person” and the argue with me about intersex shit after informing them that I am one. Cut the shit dyadic people.

Sep 22

quote In my early twenties, I was dating a trans woman who in some ways still had a male body. I was very attracted to her, and she was absolutely a woman, but part of me was like if I’m attracted to this anatomically male body, does that mean that I could be interested in men? I don’t want this to be interpreted as I dated a trans woman so I could be into men, but I feel that there’s a blurriness that happens with trans people. For some people that blur opens things up and calls things into questions, things that could otherwise be rigid identities.

Ariel Schrag, author of Adam, in her interview with The Rumpus

I FUCKING HATE ARIEL SCHRAG.

(via odofemi)

to talk about how trans people open things up and call things into question and to simultaneously talk about people being “anatomically male”?!?!

(via sandyfarquhar)

wow, bummer.

(via boredangry)

Sep 17

So You Can Fuck Us, What’s Next? // Going Beyond Sex With Trans Women →

lesbianspaceprincex:

It’s within my experience, and the experience of at least a dozen trans women of color that I know, that we are the first to be disposed of in intimate relationships. By “dispose,” I mean when life gets hectic for our partner(s), we are the ones who take the least priority and are the first “stressor” to be cut off. This is definitely an acceptable thing to do when someone is genuinely having their life fall apart and cannot maintain a relationship, so I am not advocating that every person stay in a relationship with a trans woman. I’m simply noting a theme that has been true for me and many trans women I’ve talked to about intimate relationships.

I mean, what reason could you have for breaking up with us but maintaining a relationship (sexual, romantic, or a mixture of both) with other people? If your life is in shambles, wouldn’t it make sense to not be with anyone? Why are trans women the first to be cut off, and the only people to be cut off?

Read More

A free write I did today. :)

Sep 11
adventuresinblunderland:

the-middle-eastern-feminist:

Perfect example of how patriarchy uses racism and classism to prevent solidarity and create division between women.

"to prevent solidarity and create division between women." Can not stress enough.

adventuresinblunderland:

the-middle-eastern-feminist:

Perfect example of how patriarchy uses racism and classism to prevent solidarity and create division between women.

"to prevent solidarity and create division between women." Can not stress enough.

Aug 28

OK, TIME TO BLOW UP SOMEONE’S SPOT

partybottom:

PartyBottom will tell you about two experiences she had with HIV health providers today: Last night, PB was sent this highly filtered Facebook post:
———- ——- feeling drained 11 mins · Unbelievable that my program, which serves transwomen and men who have sex with men, is being threatened with boycott because one if my referral sources found out I go to fest. Deeply hurt and disappointed. Not sure how to process this. Tired of being in the closet about going to fest just to protect my damn job.

To clarify, PartyBottom is on professional terms with this person’s deal is that he very much “passes” as male, “performs” male in his daily life and work, and (I would venture to say) generally is perceived as male probably 98.8% of the time. He works at a center which, in their branding, and on their website, serves many HIV+ clients, including “trans women and men who have sex with men,” in one breath, a population that has historically been blurred together, often to the detriment of trans women’s ability to access services.

BUT WAIT, THERE’S MORE: the deal with this guy is that for two weeks a year, he goes by “she,” in order to go to the Michigan Womyn’s Music Festival. And works with trans women and gay dudes the rest of the year.

Now, PartyBottom has gone on record as Officially Done With Caring About Michfest, but when it starts FUXXING WITH MY AIDS SERVICES, THAT’S WHEN I GET MAD, OK?

AND, TO CONTINUE: just the other day, I was in a meeting at the New York City Department of Health with this guy, a “community outreach session” designed to develop a public health campaign in New York around PrEP, the HIV pre-exposure prophylaxis, which has had much media coverage as of late (Google it if you don’t know what I’m talking about.)

There are a million reasons why this “community outreach session” was not in fact a “community outreach session,” but instead just a dog-and-pony show so the DoH could say it did its due diligence by being in touch with the people or whatever, but those reasons are boring and typical: it was at 9am on a Monday morning, in some faceless office building in the financial district, with high security where you had to show ID (hello excluding many trans and undocumented people) and THERE WAS NO DAMN COFFEE — but that brings us to the meat of the thing, which really kind of went downhill from there, if you can believe it.

PS: PartyBottom, always the intrepid journalist, was one of two people in the room who were not affiliated with some kind of heavyweight professionalized organization, or historicized activist group.

(This is wrapping back around, trust me, stay with me here.)

The first panel of the morning was on “Populations That Have Traditionally Received HIV Outreach: Men Who Have Sex With Men, Men of Color, and Trans Women.

See above, insert frowny face. Even one cisgender women in the room who admittedly she only knew everything she knew about the transgender community from RuPaul’s Drag Race was like, Wait. I don’t get it. Why are we talking about trans women on this panel? They’re women. Moreover, PB would contest the claim that it is easy for trans women to find trans-specific information about HIV, especially around PrEP. In the initial research presented at the meeting, we learned that of all the PrEP campaigns designed so far in North America (about 50, if PB is not mistaken), two — TWO — are aimed at trans women.

As far as the discussion on men who have sex with men went, it was an extremely sophisticated and nuanced conversation. Many concrete suggestions were made: why not, for example, instead of translating pre-designed campaigns for English-speakers, hire people whose primary language is Spanish to design campaigns? Why not start thinking of HIV less as a binary (positive-versus-negative) and more of a continuum? (HIV undiagnosed, HIV diagnosed, HIV on meds, HIV undetectable, HIV negative, HIV negative and on PrEP, HIV status unknown, etc etc etc) which absolutely reflects more the reality HIV/AIDS in the US today? Why not, instead of talking about “safe” sex only in terms of condoms and seropositivity, we start talking about harm reduction sex, including the myriad ways people find mindful and careful ways to explore their sexuality in a world where HIV still exists, both with and without condoms and PrEP? What are the intersections of social justice and HIV — you know what really causes HIV? Not lack of condoms, not lack of access to PrEP: racism, sexism, poverty and homophobia, that’s what.

These are some serious thinkers, here in this room. People who are extremely careful with language.

And then, (sad trombone), it was tokenization time. “Well, we were going to invite this awesome trans woman to talk about PrEP, but she couldn’t make it, and then we tried to invite this other awesome trans woman to talk about HIV, but she couldn’t make it.” Since PB had been the only person to identify herself as both transgender and HIV+ in the room (THE MICHFEST DUDE HAD NOT) she was called upon to, were she so inclined, speak on behalf of ALL TRANS WOMEN’S CONCERNS RE: PrEP.

Fortunately, PB had been taking notes the whole time and is pretty good at public speaking ex tempore. I went up to the mic and gave a little speech on the fly, which, to be honest, could make up an entire other post (and probably will.) Unfortunately, THIS WHOLE DEBAUCLE WAS UNFORTUNATE, AND WENT ON TO BECOME MORE UNFORTUNATE.

Because the next panel, “Under-Represented Populations: Women and Undocumented People” started out with a big ole slap in the face. As the panel was introduced, it was made clear by the moderator that in this case we were talking about cisgender women. Then, a brief discussion ensued on the meaning of cisgender, since about half the people in this highly educated room had not heard of it. (Like, you know the guys from that Academy Award nominated documentary, How To Survive a Plague? One of those guys was there. It was that kind of crowd.

Then, the panel starts with a (white) woman, who started out her speech: “Yeah, well I guess I’m here to represent ALL WOMEN on this panel. I don’t know about all this cisgender stuff. I will tell you right now, I think that word is stupid. I don’t work with cisgender women, I just work with women. Period.”

Now, look. It is the opinion of PartyBottom, Inc., that the intergenerational language wars around contemporary trans discourse in the last six months have probably done more to alienate intergenerational communities and individual people from each other than to unite them, which is probably a bad thing; moreover, go ahead, call PartyBottom a tranny, a shemale, a he-she, a shim — whatever slur you can think of: it will probably hurt my feelings and I will be annoyed with you, but at the end of the day I know who and what I am and no one can take that away from me. Who I allow to call me what depends largely on context.

BUT (and this is a big but, since we’re talking about context) we were in a room full of people who were there to design communication, and thus had up until that point been extremely careful and nuanced about language. And I mean, in that atmosphere, where everyone is going as far out of their way as possible to not step on each others’ toes, it felt like a slap in the face to be told that naming a hegemonic group that has historically oppressed trans people is just “stupid.”

I raised my hand. I politely objected. I asked for the mic. She kept talking, and steamrolled over me. So I left.

I got up, and walked out of the room.

A couple of nice people came chasing after me, including a nice gay dude who said, (verbatim quote) “Don’t let her get you down, please come back in, girl, you just got hit with the stigma stick!” and another woman who was there on behalf of an organization of people of color with HIV and was equally annoyed with this woman’s tone, said to me, “Look, for one thing, that woman up there does not represent all women, and for another, you need to be in that room. Your voice needs to be in that room.”

You know who did not come out in a gesture of solidarity? MICHFEST TRANS DUDE, THAT’S WHO.

But I just couldn’t take it. I was hungry, I was tired, I was emotionally and intellectually exhausted. I went to the bathroom. I cried.

Then, I snuck out of the building, via the service elevator.

I guess this is why PartyBottom makes a better writer than an activist, huh?

I felt terrible afterward. Just another hysterical trans woman, storming out of the meeting in tears after one off-hand remark. Like I had not just let down myself, but all trans women with HIV.

As I understand it, later in the meeting there was some resolution around this stuff, and I was contacted later by the DoH and someone from TAG (the Treatment Action Group, historically a very very big deal in HIV research and treatment) so this story is still ongoing. More as it develops.

But the reason I tell it is to illustrate how trans women are systematically shut out of the process of decision-making around HIV prevention and education, and how, sometimes, trans men are complicit in this. ESPECIALLY WHEN THEY GO TO MICHFEST.

I don’t want this guy to lose his job. I don’t want his organization to suffer — they do good work. I want him to take some accountability, and to clean up his act, and to maybe stop supporting an ancient bastion of transmisogyny on his summer vacation. I mean, whatever.

BUT, REMEMBER: I told you this was the story of two HIV social worker stories. Remember, PartyBottom is about BYOPMA: Bring Your Own Positive Mental Attitude.

Today I went for some benefits counseling at the granddaddy of ‘em all, the most stately and centurion and (perhaps ill-managed, if you read the papers) HIV service org in New York. And, I waited two hours to see a counselor there. But it was SO WORTH IT.

First off, when the receptionist told me who I was going to be seeing, I was shocked. She’s still here??, I asked incredulously. After dealing with constant, unending turnover in HIV service nonprofits, it was so refreshing to walk into an org that has changed locations, and, five years later, retained the same awesome staff member.

And she was just so awesome. She has always been so awesome. Organizations can sometimes be fucked, but at the end of the day, organizations are just made up of people, and this particular worker is very, very good people.

I have a feeling — I don’t know this for sure, but I get the sense that she has been working there for well over 20 years. She knows her shit. I was asking about some health insurance questions (specifically, some creative ways to perhaps get around the Medicaid exclusion for trans surgery in New York — she didn’t blink an eye or skip a beat about this), and she had all the information I needed, (and then some) and was funny, charming, witty and humorous, all at exactly the right times and maintaining the exact right tone throughout the entire interaction.

I noticed she happened to have a copy of Trans Bodies, Trans Selves on her dest. As we left, I mentioned I needed to use the bathroom and she was like, Okay, the women’s room is kind of schlep — it’s way down the hall past the stairs to the right. We really are working on getting gender neutral facilities. I was like, oh, don’t worry, it’s no big deal — like, I don’t mind finding the bathroom on my own — but she was like, look, to some people it is a very big deal, with this tone in her voice that to me indicated 1) it sucks that women who come to GMHC, who often have mobility or breathing difficulties due to illnesses associated with HIV, have to make such a long walk to find the bathroom and 2) that she realizes that gender neutral restrooms are essential to serve a variety of transgender clients, not to mention families and all the other people that single-stall restrooms serve.

By-the-by, it came up very naturally in the conversation that she had been married to a man for a very long time, so, I’m guessing — and of course I could be off the mark here — she identifies as a straight, cisgender woman. POINT: solidarity is an act, a series of acts, a lifetime of choices and self-education, a deeply felt human compassion, NOT a button on your goddamn denim vest. Or, even really a matter of identity, when it comes right down to it.

The point is, She knows not only the theory of how the VAST, ENORMOUS HIV bureaucracy operates in New York, but how it plays out in practice. She knows all the ins and outs of everything, because this is work she has dedicated her life to. She was, frankly, the picture of competence.

When I am her age, she is who I want to be. God bless her.

WAAAAAAY TL;DR — When it comes to trans women and HIV, there are lots of young trans dudes out there who Totally Don’t Get It, and there are lots of people (straight people!) who have been around since this virus caught fire who do, and I am grateful to them every single day.

Aug 04