Trans People Are Allowed to Feel Hurt

The Transgender Therapist
4 min readOct 20, 2022
Photo by Zhivko Minkov on Unsplash. Person with their head bowed and face covered sitting on concrete steps.

My Medium posts do not allow responses. While I don’t rely on income from my stories to pay bills, I am still missing a valuable opportunity to increase engagement and the number of people who read my words by not allowing responses or conversations on my posts. However, my time on Earth has helped me realize that my mental health is more important than exposing myself to transphobia on a more regular basis than I absolutely have to.

The culture war on trans people means I can rarely go a single day without seeing or hearing someone’s opinion about how people like me shouldn’t exist. Outright statements that trans people aren’t real, should be harmed, et cetera are certainly distressing and hard to shake, but the sentiment shared every time I (briefly) open the comments on my posts is infinitely more frustrating. It’s always some tired flavor of…

“It’s not THEIR fault that YOU don’t pass. You can’t possibly expect people to read your mind! It’s so unreasonable to feel hurt about being misgendered, and even more inexcusable to tell people about feeling hurt! I’m an old cishet white guy, so believe me, I know what I’m talking about and my opinions are definitely relevant and important. The less I know about a topic, the more you can trust my perspective.”

Okay, so they don’t say that last part, but I think that is very much the energy they bring to their comments.

Photo by @felipepelaquim on Unsplash. Person wearing glasses seemingly shouting into a gold microphone.

The average trans person is more aware of gender construction than the vast majority of cis people, even those who study women’s and gender studies. That is because we are constantly negotiating and interpreting our gender identity and expression in a social hierarchy that despises nuance and complexity, favoring strict and rigid categories regardless of the consequences that result. I say this because we are very aware that those of us who are more androgynous, gender ambiguous, early in…

The Transgender Therapist

Queer, white trans man living in the Pacific Northwest with a grudge and a sharp tongue.