Transspecism // Transgenderism

Transspecism // Transgenderism

It’s more than 1am and I just ended a therian-related conversation on AIM. I take a shower, sneak into the kitchen as I feel hungry, come back to my room with a piece of bread and a bottle of strawberry-flavoured water. It’s summer, dry and hot here in South of France, so I’m only wearing a pair of shorts to sleep. I look at my topless profile in my wardrobe’s wide mirror as I drink from the bottle, and during one second my arm is hidding my breasts. During this moment I suddendly look right. Less female. I am surprised as I don’t recognize my usual self in the mirror, yet it feels accurate. I should look male. I enjoy my pretty, short and thin body, I like breasts in a general manner, and there are many traits I admire in women. However, I should be a man. I don’t identify with most of women, I don’t really act like one, my way of being isn’t very feminine, and despite traits I may share with women, it seems I often have more in common with men. It’s not a matter of not being happy with oneself, one’s gender, and then jump to conclusions about transgenderism. I feel and know I am more masculine than feminine, so I find that people don’t treat me as they “should” and that my body doesn’t fit my mind. Boobs seem pretty but unnecessary, while the feeling I lack a more “male” genitalia is quite strong. Maybe I shouldn’t be that short, maybe I should look more like other young men. As therianthropy, the feeling of not being in the right body can cause frustration. However I do not comprehend and deal with it in the same way, and I’m going to tell you why to me being transpecies and trangendered is not so similar.

I think it primarily differs in social interactions. I don’t expect people to treat me as an animal, because being treated as an animal means being treated as a “lesser being” by most of folks. People don’t have to change their way of treating me due to my therianthropy, they could only aknowledge the fact I’m animal inside, and that I can act animalish – in other word, they could stop thinking of me as a freak. My “species role” among human society is non-existant, and the animal doesn’t care. I don’t know how wolves and other more social beasties experience it, personally I know the animal aspect of me is just… out of the whole big-crowd-interaction thing, and if it was a disctinct part of me, on its own, I’m not sure it would think of itself as a being in a social group, with social rules and such. After all, socializing would just be about mating and territory affairs. All this human hot air about socializing is overrated. *Flicking tail.* This is where being mentally another species is different from being another gender inside, to me, because while the animal doesn’t care about people, and the people doesn’t care about the animal, gender roles are something very important in social interactions. My biological body is mostly female, therefore I’ve been given a woman social role which I’m expected to fulfill. The animal doesn’t care about roles, and the animal doesn’t have a gender on its own because it is me, in this human body. When I am happy the animal is happy, when I am angry the animal is angry. Same goes for social role, the animal inside has none, but I have one as a human – supposedly being a woman, finding a male companion, having kids, being a mother . If being an animal person may give me the feeling my body does not fit, like my biological gender, no comparison can be drawn concerning social roles. As you understood it’s not just a matter of physical body, but how people treat you, how they interact with you.

Another time, another day. The air is hot and wet in this yellow-grey atmosphere. I walked out on the terrace, barefoot among pale, lemon coloured bloom’s petals. I smell the air around me; the clouds seem heavy. I can hear the birds in the neighbour’s aviary. My cat, my small-panther comes to me. “Let’s play, Akhi. A storm is coming” and she sprawls on her side and looks at me in bliss. I feel inspired. It started raining now, and I’m enjoying the smell of wet dust. If there wasn’t someone at home, I would probably be walking topless in the rain. But I am not alone, and my assigned gender has forced me to never be topless outside again since I’ve grown out of childhood. Not when there is random people around at least. What can I say more on the subject? Being androgyne is neither being male or female. It’s being none and both at the same time, and much like therianthropy, I doubt that those who don’t experience it can get a real idea of what it’s like. I stand outside in the raindrops, still, knowing people can’t see that young man in the garden, his feline ears and his long tail, and the dark blotched golden fur and black feathers puffing in the rain.

About

About

My writings speak better of who I am, or who I used to be. That’s a fair share of content to read, but this is how you’ll get a better picture of my headspace and worldview, as incomplete as it will ever be.

The basics are that I’m about thirty, I’m French, I grew up near the Mediterranean sea, and I live in Paris right now. I learned English at school and then reading websites on Internet so my writing isn’t perfect. I am into (a non-exhaustive list) linguistics, mythology, sociology, gender studies, feminism and art. I am both skeptical and spiritual (but not religious), I incorporate in my beliefs system what I must admit by experience and what seems rational to me. A lack of tolerance annoys me as much as a lack of critical thinking.

I am a trans (-gender/-sexual/-feminist) person and I’ve been living as “male” for a bunch of years, though I identify more as “other” than anything. Physical transition feels long past behind me, though its memory is vivid and I still talk and write about gender regularly. I’m also an animal-person, which means I feel that my identity is other than only human. My inner-self is a combination of clouded leopard and common raven; every side is an integrated aspect of me, they are not entities living in my head. If you’re here you probably already know what a “therianthrope” is, but if not then you’ll find more information in the Echoes section.

This website has seen many redesigns and several essays used to be edited regularly as I found some things were not working for me anymore. At this point I’ve mostly made peace with the fact that growing as a person means I can come to disagree with things I believed and said in the past, and instead of trying to erase those I can simply leave them as just that – statements of who I used to be at a specific time, in a specific space, brought forth by a specific context. Keep this in mind and avoid holding grudge at my present self because of some old stuff you’ve read.

I started this website in 2004 as a way to store somewhere the ideas and opinions I had, several of which came in reaction to behaviors and discussions I witnessed among animal-people. I don’t consider this a good or bad thing in itself. The place has long become a more general archive for my self-ponderings, something to look at as I walk my path to remember where I come from and think further of what is ahead.

Hopefully you’ll take my words for what they are: written accounts of someone’s experiences and opinions, not an universal truth. The site has also become seemingly less animal-focused and more about how the different aspects of my identity and worldview play together. I like this. The teeth and claws are still there, underneath; just not advertised as such.

No need to ask if you want to link to my website from another place, but please do not repost my essays on other blogs and websites. It’s perfectly legal to quote excerpts from my writings, just give the source and be reasonable: quote to show a point or as an example, but do not quote instead of writing your own content. I feel I have to say this because someone in the past once asked to use my work and they took whole paragraphs from my stuff, using my introduction, conclusion and several other parts of my writing as their own. If you fail to respect copyrights, I will ask you to take the thing down, and I may contact your hosting service to take legal action.

Lastly, if you want to mention my stuff in your research paper or book, please contact me first. I’ve never said “no” to anyone but it’s better and more professional to ask before you do so, and I’m saying this as a fellow in the research field so I know what it can be like. People are not disposable resources, please respect the basic rules of politeness and deontology.