Category Archives: Exploring Trans

I Hate Clothes Shopping

Originally posted at EXPLORING TRANS – TUESDAY, MAY 4, 2010, 5:47 PM

I hate clothes shopping. Actually, that’s not really true. I enjoy finding new clothes. The problems come from not being able to find clothes that fit and being steered toward clothes that don’t fit with my sense of gender. In particular, I hate shopping for clothes at huge bargain stores. I guess it’s partly my fault because I should know better than to shop at such places–there’s never anything that fits. Still, I happened to be in the city today, and so I stopped by a store. Fail. Continue reading

Not Your Usual Trans Childhood Narrative

EXPLORING TRANS – WEDNESDAY, MARCH 31, 2010, 5:40 PM

When I was little, my grandmother made me a pink princess costume for Halloween: a little petal pink shift, a darker pink cape that tied with a white grosgrain ribbon and was trimmed with sequins, and a pale pink satin tiara, also trimmed with sequins. I loved it. After Halloween, that costume ended up in my dress up box (a purple box with white hearts), and I played with it all the time. Continue reading

I Feel Like I’m Losing Myself

EXPLORING TRANS – SATURDAY, JULY 10, 2010, 8:11 PM

I feel like I’m being pulled in so many different directions. I don’t know how — I’ve never know how — to deal with multiple identities in a way that didn’t cause one of them to be neglected and ignored. I’m a Korean adoptee, but I’m also queer and trans, and I haven’t yet been able to figure out a way to unite those identities, instead of simply pushing one to the foreground and the other to the back. Continue reading

Re: Please Don’t Call My Drink “Girly”

It’s amazing how much can change in little more than one year. When I first wrote “Please Don’t Call My Drink ‘Girly,’” thirteen or fourteen months ago, I was in a very different mental place in terms of security in my own gender presentation and my preferences in alcoholic drinks. I am now definitely more comfortable with my drink preferences and more sure in the knowledge that what I drink doesn’t change who I am. Continue reading

Please Don’t Call My Drink “Girly”

EXPLORING TRANS – TUESDAY, MAY 11, 2010, 1:33 AM

Today was the boat cruise. Every year, after all papers and exams are done, the seniors at my college have a tradition on going on a dinner cruise on the river with some of the favorite faculty and staff. This was it, and overall, it was awesome.

Parts of it were less awesome. My friend looked at our drinks (she had a Sex On The Beach; another friend and I both had Cosmopolitans) and said, “We’re so girly!” Awesome. Great. Thanks. So not what I want to hear. The next drink I ordered was a vodka tonic. Continue reading

Searching for Connection, or Looking for Heartbreak?

EXPLORING TRANS – FRIDAY, SEPTEMBER 10, 2010, 1:21 AM

I’m probably never going to meet any of the people who were in my life before I met my parents, before I came to the U.S. It’s something I’m working to accept. Oh, I might be able to track them down — unlike some of my friends, I was one of the lucky ones. I have the names and cities of my birth parents, and the agency through which I was adopted still exists. And part of me really wants to find them, part of me really wants to meet people who are actually biologically related to me. Part of me wants to know whether I look like them, whether I inherited any of their traits or skills. Part of me wants to know — know for sure, know for certain — whether they loved me. Did they give me up because they didn’t want me, or because they wanted a better life for me? Continue reading

Don’t Call Me Woman: The Ups and Downs of Privilege

EXPLORING TRANS – TUESDAY, MARCH 2, 2010, 11:31 PM

Although I self-identify as trans, people very rarely read me as anything other than a woman. I suppose I can’t really blame them: I’m barely over five feet tall; I have child-sized hands; my shoe size is that of the average 8-12-year-old (according to Converse.com); and I’ve never had what anyone would call a boyish figure. I look distinctly female, no matter how much I’d like to pretend otherwise. Continue reading

Re: Questioning Trans Legitimacy

Responding to “Questioning Trans Legitimacy

Legitimacy is still something I think about, although not always in the same way as before. I’ve become a lot more secure in my identity as a trans person — I know more trans and genderqueer people. I know people who also came out as trans / genderqueer / gender-variant in their twenties. I know people who also don’t have a classic trans childhood narrative. I know both in theory and in real life that gender comes in a rainbow of varieties, and that helps me feel far more comfortable about being part of that diversity. Continue reading

Saving Grace

EXPLORING TRANS – THURSDAY, SEPTEMBER 16, 2010, 4:19 AM

No, I’m not referring to the TV show. I’m actually talking about a group I recently joined here, Genderqueer Chicago. I’ve only been to two meetings, but it is changing my life. I know that sounds incredibly hyperbolic and melodramatic, but I’m actually serious. Continue reading

Feeling Dapper

EXPLORING TRANS — SUNDAY, MAY 16, 2010, 10:18 PM

I’ve needed to dress up five times this past weekend and week for graduation and senior week, and I’d been absolutely dreading it. I’m not good with dressing up — it’s a combination of not knowing what to wear (given that all of the messages I’ve received about how to look nice involve dresses and heels and such) and not having clothes to wear (given that menswear is expensive and generally is ill-fitting on me). Additionally, I get really self-conscious because I know that for dress-up events, most of the people around me will be wearing dresses, skirts, and other girly clothes (at the very least, really fitted pants and blazer), and that makes me stick out. Continue reading