It has come to my attention in recent days that my product, DickPanties, has seriously offended some members of the queer community. I have received messages, both privately and publicly, scrutinizing the company’s mission and the imagery surrounding my brand. I want everyone who contacted me about this to know that I have not taken these comments, criticisms, or anger lightly. To find out that this project- which I have put so much of my time, love, and identity into- had seriously offended people whose cause I claim to support was incredibly upsetting. I have not issued any formal response to these messages until now, because I wanted to take some time to educate myself on these issues.
Hi. Trans woman here.
To summarize what the tone of this note felt like to me:
This starts out as an apology letter to trans women and then almost immediately transforms into a self-aggrandizing sales pitch. You cap it off with, “I know this is offensive to trans women, but I’m just gonna keep on goin’.”
You say that you discussed this project with, and worked closely with, several queer / trans people. I am going to take a stab in the dark here and assume that none of them are trans women. I’d like to remind you that queer and trans people who aren’t trans women usually have little to no idea of what is or is not good or harmful for trans women. I’m sure there are a few trans women who don’t find this product offensive, but I can safely guess that the vast majority of us would find this product extremely, highly offensive — and, for me (and probably many others), not just offensive, but dysphoria-inducing and day-ruining.
Reading your Indiegogo made me feel like I was being mocked. Do you know why? It’s not because I am oversensitive; it is because your product is inherently harmful to trans women. It is because you, personally, and I am totally sure that this is unintentional, are mocking trans women.
You mention several times in this note how good this product could be for cis women and trans men and transmasculine people. I’m sure it is! I don’t care; that was never the source of the outrage. Trans women aren’t saying “this product is offensive to trans people”, we are saying “this product is offensive to trans women”, and you really need to understand how different those are.
And, again, it is not only offensive, but actively harmful.
I personally think that the best thing you can do right now, moving forward, would be to immediately stop any production / marketing / sales of DickPanties. Just: drop the project and move on. There are ways that you can make clothing that encourages gender play and defies gender binaries without throwing trans women under the bus, and now that you know how trans women feel about your product, to continue to make this product in any fashion is to actively throw us under the bus after you were informed that this was a bad thing to do.
Please stop making this product.