There has been some nasty discourse lately about how nonbinary people aren’t trans. The “logic” behind that has been mainly that nonbinary people don’t transition – and when it’s pointed out that many nonbinary people do, in fact, socially and/or medically transition, the argument then becomes that nonbinary people aren’t “really” transitioning because they are not transitioning to the so-called opposite sex.

Ignoring the fact that trans is short for transgender and not transition, my question is: why is transitioning to more valid than transitioning from?

As a nonbinary, specifically agender, person, my intent is not to transition towards masculinity so much as it is to transition away from femininity.

To paraphrase from Being Roy, my gender identity is “how I think of myself when I don’t have a reflection in the mirror telling me differently.”

I’m nonbinary no matter what the mirror says, but transitioning brings the internal and external into better harmony. Transitioning holds a mirror up to my inner self to show the world who I really am.

I don’t have to make a binary transition to be trans.



6 thoughts on “Reflections

  1. Language geekery ahoy.

    With coming to know a little more about it, I’ve started seeing it as more of a contraction of “transcends (established) gender(s)” (person who ~).

    Looking at the language, “cis” as prefix means “on the edge,” and “trans” can mean “in the middle” “going across” “connecting” or “through”. So, from a linguistic perspective, you are absolutely right it’s not just about transition, the prefix suggests movement or being somewhere that’s not an end or edge (in this case, of the gender spectrum) or both. A much broader meaning.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I took several linguistics classes in college; I’m all about language geekery 😀

      I think “being somewhere that’s not an end” is a great way to look at it. Thanks for the comment!

      Liked by 1 person

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