There’s an arresting quote in Jude Doyle’s superb profile of the late author Rachel Pollack that to me, sums up the experience of being trans when you haven’t come out:
all of these things speak to me, but I am not welcome in the places where they are being spoken.
The piece also links to an important slice of trans history, the manifesto Don’t Call Me Mister You Fucking Beast. The language around transness has changed a lot since it was written in 1972, the same year I was born, but it remains timely.
When we’re alone we tend to accept the stereotypes. By getting together we’ve discovered how ridiculous they really are. No one in the group has ever said, ‘What horrible trick of nature has made me a woman trapped in a man’s body?’ We just don’t think that way.
…The important thing is, no one should tell you, as a man or a woman, this is the role you have to play, and you have to play it all the time.