Computation of CIs for Binomial proportions in SAS and its
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I'm a nonbinary researcher and I am curious the most inclusive way to ask gender?
I am an engineering education grad student that focuses on assessment- so currently I write surveys. I am trying to figure out the best way to ask gender. My professor has ... What is your gender? Multiple choice: male, female, trans man, trans woman, gender nonconforming, othedo not wish to disclose I have What is your gender? Multiple choice: male, female, trans man, trans woman, nonbinary, othedo not wish to disclose I was thinking as an alternative... What is your gender? Check all that apply: male, female, transgender, nonbinary, othedo not wish to disclose. Thoughts?
I am fairly new to podcasting and deeply thankful for the information I glean here on Reddit. As I have read countless posts in a short time, my perception is that the population here, in this group, is overwhelming male. I would be fascinated to know what percentage of us are female/ male and how our podcasts break down by gender. View Poll
I really enjoyed m4nz's recent post: Getting into DevOps as a beginner is tricky - My 50 cents to help with it and wanted to do my own version of it, in hopes that it might help beginners as well. I agree with most of their advice and recommend folks check it out if you haven't yet, but I wanted to provide more of a simple list of things to learn and tools to use to compliment their solid advice.
While I went to college and got a degree, it wasn't in computer science. I simply developed an interest in Linux and Free & Open Source Software as a hobby. I set up a home server and home theater PC before smart TV's and Roku were really a thing simply because I thought it was cool and interesting and enjoyed the novelty of it. Fast forward a few years and basically I was just tired of being poor lol. I had heard on the now defunct Linux Action Show podcast about linuxacademy.com and how people had had success with getting Linux jobs despite not having a degree by taking the courses there and acquiring certifications. I took a course, got the basic LPI Linux Essentials Certification, then got lucky by landing literally the first Linux job I applied for at a consulting firm as a junior sysadmin. Without a CS degree, any real experience, and 1 measly certification, I figured I had to level up my skills as quickly as possible and this is where I really started to get into DevOps tools and methodologies. I now have 5 years experience in the IT world, most of it doing DevOps/SRE work.
People have varying opinions on the relevance and worth of certifications. If you already have a CS degree or experience then they're probably not needed unless their structure and challenge would be a good motivation for you to learn more. Without experience or a CS degree, you'll probably need a few to break into the IT world unless you know someone or have something else to prove your skills, like a github profile with lots of open source contributions, or a non-profit you built a website for or something like that. Regardless of their efficacy at judging a candidate's ability to actually do DevOps/sysadmin work, they can absolutely help you get hired in my experience. Right now, these are the certs I would recommend beginners pursue. You don't necessarily need all of them to get a job (I got started with just the first one on this list), and any real world experience you can get will be worth more than any number of certs imo (both in terms of knowledge gained and in increasing your prospects of getting hired), but this is a good starting place to help you plan out what certs you want to pursue. Some hiring managers and DevOps professionals don't care at all about certs, some folks will place way too much emphasis on them ... it all depends on the company and the person interviewing you. In my experience I feel that they absolutely helped me advance my career. If you feel you don't need them, that's cool too ... they're a lot of work so skip them if you can of course lol.
LPI Linux Essentials - basic multiple choice test on Linux basics. Fairly easy especially if you have nix experience, otherwise I'd recommend a taking a course like I did. linuxacademy worked for me, but there are other sites out there that can help. For this one, you can probably get by just searching youtube for the topics covered on the test.
Linux Foundation Certified System Administrator - This one is a hands on test which is great, you do a screen share with a proctor and ssh into their server; then you have a list of objectives to accomplish on the server pretty much however you see fit. Write a big bash script to do it all, do like 100 mv commands manually, write a small program in python lol, whatever you want so long as you accomplish the goals in time.
Amazon Web Services certs - I would go for the all 3 associate level certs if you can: Solutions Architect, SysOps Administrator, Developer. These are quite tedious to study for as they can be more a certification that you know which AWS products to get your client to use than they are a test of your cloud knowledge at times. For better or worse, AWS is the top cloud provider at the moment so showing you have knowledge there opens you up to the most jobs. If you know you want to work with another cloud provider then the Google certs can be swapped out here, for example. I know that with the AWS certs, I get offers all the time for companies that use GCP even though I have no real experience there. Folks with the google certs: is the reverse true for you? (genuinely asking, it would be useful for beginners to know).
Certified Kubernetes Administrator - I don't actually have this cert since at this point in my career I have real Kubernetes experience on my resume so it's kind of not needed, but if you wanted learn Kubernetes and prove it to prospective employers it can help.
Tools and Experimentation
While certs can help you get hired, they won't make you a good DevOps Engineer or Site Reliability Engineer. The only way to get good, just like with anything else, is to practice. There are a lot of sub-areas in the DevOps world to specialize in ... though in my experience, especially at smaller companies, you'll be asked to do a little (or a lot) of all of them. Though definitely not exhaustive, here's a list of tools you'll want to gain experience with both as points on a resume and as trusty tools in your tool belt you can call on to solve problems. While there is plenty of "resume driven development" in the DevOps world, these tools are solving real problems that people encounter and struggle with all the time, i.e., you're not just learning them because they are cool and flashy, but because not knowing and using them is a giant pain!
Linux! - Unless you want to only work with Windows for some reason, Linux is the most important thing you can learn to become a good DevOps professional in my view. Install it on your personal laptop, try a bunch of different distributions, develop an opinion on systemd vs. other init systems ;), get a few cloud servers on DigitalOcean or AWS to mess around with, set up a home server, try different desktop environments and window managers, master a cli text editor, break your install and try to fix it, customize your desktop until it's unrecognizable lol. Just get as much experience with Linux as possible!
git - Aside from general Linux knowledge, git is one of the most important tool for DevOps/SREs to know in my view. A good DevOps team will usually practice "git ops," i.e., making changes to your CI/CD pipeline, infrastructure, or server provisioning will involve making a pull request against the appropriate git repo.
terraform - terraform is the de facto "infrastructure as code" tool in the DevOps world. Personally, I love it despite it's pain points. It's a great place to start once you have a good Linux and cloud knowledge foundation as it will allow you to easily and quickly bring up infrastructure to practice with the other tools on this list.
packer - While not hugely popular or widely used, it's such a simple and useful tool that I recommend you check it out. Packer lets you build "immutable server images" with all of the tools and configuration you need baked in, so that your servers come online ready to start working immediately without any further provisioning needed. Combined with terraform, you can bring up Kubernetes clusters with a single command, or any other fancy DevOps tools you want to play with.
ansible - With the advent of Kubernetes and container orchestration, "configuration management" has become somewhat less relevant ... or at least less of a flashy and popular topic. It is still something you should be familiar with and it absolutely is in wide use at many companies. Personally, I love the combination of ansible + packer + terraform and find it very useful. Chef and Puppet are nice too, but Ansible is the most popular last I checked so unless you have a preference (or already know Ruby) then I'd go with that.
jenkins - despite it's many, many flaws and pain points lol, Jenkins is still incredibly useful and widely used as a CI/CD solution and it's fairly easy to get started with. EDIT: Upon further consideration, Jenkins may not be the best choice for beginners to learn. At this point, you’re probably better off with something like GitLab: it’s a more powerful and useful tool, you’ll learn YAML for its config, and it’s less of a pain to use. If you know Jenkins that’s great and it will help you get a job probably, but then you might implement Jenkins since it’s what you know ... but if you have the chance, choose another tool.
postgres - Knowledge of SQL databases is very useful, both from a DBA standpoint and the operations side of things. You might be helping developers develop a new service and helping with setting up schema (or doing so yourself for an internal tool), or you might be spinning up an instance for devs to access, or even pinpointing that a SQL query is the bottleneck in an app's performance. I put Postgres here because that's what I personally use and have seen a lot in the industry, but experience with any SQL database will be useful.
nginx - nginx is commonly used an http server for simple services or as an ingress option for kubernetes. Learn the basic config options, how to do TLS, etc.
docker - Ah, the buzzword of yesteryear. Docker and containerization is still incredibly dominant as a paradigm in the DevOps world right now and it is paramount that you learn it and master it. Be comfortable writing Dockerfiles, troubleshooting docker networking, the fundamentals of how linux containers work ... and definitely get familiar with Alpine Linux as it will most likely be the base image for most of your company's docker images.
kubernetes - At many companies, DevOps EngineeSite Reliability Engineer effectively translates to "Kubernetes Babysitter," especially if you're new on the job. Container orchestration, while no longer truly "cutting edge" is still fairly new and there is high demand for people with knowledge and experience with it. Work through Kubernetes The Hard Way to bring up a cluster manually. Learn and know the various "primitives" like pods and replicasets. Learn about ingress and how to expose services.
There are many, many other DevOps tools I left out that are worthwhile (I didn't even touch the tools in the kubernetes space like helm and spinnaker). Definitely don't stop at this list! A good DevOps engineer is always looking to add useful tools to their tool belt. This industry changes so quickly, it's hard to keep up. That's why it's important to also learn the "why" of each of these tools, so that you can determine which tool would best solve a particular problem. Nearly everything on this list could be swapped for another tool to accomplish the same goals. The ones I listed are simply the most common/popular and so are a good place to start for beginners.
Any language you learn will be useful and make you a better sysadmin/DevOps Eng/SRE, but these are the 3 I would recommend that beginners target first.
Bash - It's right there in your terminal and for better or worse, a scarily large amount of the world's IT infrastructure depends on ill-conceived and poorly commented bash scripts. It's bash scripts all the way down. I joke, but bash is an incredibly powerful tool and a great place to start learning programming basics like control flow and variables.
Python - It has a beautiful syntax, it's easy to learn, and the python shell makes it quick to learn the basics. Many companies have large repos of python scripts used by operations for automating all sorts of things. Also, many older DevOps tools (like ansible) are written in python.
Go - Go makes for a great first "systems language" in that it's quite powerful and gives you access to some low level functionality, but the syntax is simple, explicit and easy to understand. It's also fast, compiles to static binaries, has a strong type system and it's easier to learn than C or C++ or Rust. Also, most modern DevOps tools are written in Go. If the documentation isn't answering your question and the logs aren't clear enough, nothing beats being able to go to the source code of a tool for troubleshooting.
Expanding your knowledge
As m4nz correctly pointed out in their post, while knowledge of and experience with popular DevOps tools is important; nothing beats in-depth knowledge of the underlying systems. The more you can learn about Linux, operating system design, distributed systems, git concepts, language design, networking (it's always DNS ;) the better. Yes, all the tools listed above are extremely useful and will help you do your job, but it helps to know why we use those tools in the first place. What problems are they solving? The solutions to many production problems have already been automated away for the most part: kubernetes will restart a failed service automatically, automated testing catches many common bugs, etc. ... but that means that sometimes the solution to the issue you're troubleshooting will be quite esoteric. Occam's razor still applies, and it's usually the simplest explanation that works; but sometimes the problem really is at the kernel level. The biggest innovations in the IT world are generally ones of abstractions: config management abstracts away tedious server provisioning, cloud providers abstract away the data center, containers abstract away the OS level, container orchestration abstracts away the node and cluster level, etc. Understanding what it happening beneath each layer of abstraction is crucial. It gives you a "big picture" of how everything fits together and why things are the way they are; and it allows you to place new tools and information into the big picture so you'll know why they'd be useful or whether or not they'd work for your company and team before you've even looked in-depth at them. Anyway, I hope that helps. I'll be happy to answer any beginnegetting started questions that folks have! I don't care to argue about this or that point in my post, but if you have a better suggestion or additional advice then please just add it here in the comments or in your own post! A good DevOps Eng/SRE freely shares their knowledge so that we can all improve.
(Please note that the creator of this census, me (picc), is a cis female who intended on the next two questions being gender vs sex identity and realized that the original wording of the questions were a bit confusing. I'm sorry for this and we will make sure that it's more clear in the future.)
Gender vs Sex Identity
Sexual Orientation Demographics
Bi and Ace
I don't know
Current Relationship Status
In a relationship
Asian (includes East Asian, Southeast Asian, and origins in the Indian subcontinent)
Hawaiian / Pacific Islander
Indeginous Australian / Aboriginal Australian
Indigenous American / Native American
Mixed / Biracial
Native English Speakers
Yes (2,112, 78.54%)
No (577, 21.46%)
The highest non-english native languages were: Spanish, Portuguese, Dutch, German, French, Filipino, Polish, Arabic, Italian, and Swedish!
Highest Level of Education
Attained High School degree or equivalent
Completed Masters/Doctorate or equivalent
Completed undergraduate or equivalent
Still in High School or lower
Still in college/got some college credit
Please note this census occurred as the COVID-19 shutdowns began, so this may not be completely reflective of the current status of Popheads.
Employed - Full Time
Employed - Part Time
Student (Not Employed)
Mental and Physical Health Statistics
Have struggled in the past year (1,818, 68%)
Have not struggled in the past year (857, 32%)
Have a physical disability (103, 3.8%)
Do not have a physical disability (2,579, 96.2%)
There were so many! Here are the top 5:
Note - this is the same as the last census!
How Long Have You Been a Part of the Community?
3 to 6 months
6 to 9 months
9 months to 1 year
Less than 3 months
We're Overrun By Lurkers!
Rarely comment and post
Comment and post sometimes
Comment and post often
Other Subreddits We Use
Blackpink is in WHICH area? HipHopHeads, Indieheads, Music, Kpop, ListenToThis, LetsTalkMusic, EDM, WeAreTheMusicMakers, ElectronicMusic, and R&BHeads say hello
Popheads is the Best Music Sub, and we have the talent to prove it
85.2% of us (2277 respondents) primarily use Popheads, while 14.8% (395 respondents) do not 88.6%% of us use Popheads as our primary source of entertainment! We also primarily use Pitchfork, NPR, and Rolling Stone. We love making our own music! Just kidding. 82.6% (2,208) of our respondents don't make their own music.
Listening Hours and Methods
Hours spend listening to music per week
Hours of Listening
Percentage of that time listening to new music
A little more than half of our participants listen to "pop" music more than 50% of the time. We use phones as our primary source of listening tool, followed by computer, radio, music player, and others. We buy our music primarily as digital downloads, but plenty of us (919, 46%) buy CDs, and the cool kids (760, 38.1%) buy vinyl. Spotify came out on top as the primary streaming service with 2,160 participants using it, followed by YouTube at 1,605 participants. (This and the above were multiple answer options). Apple Music came in with 549 participants, barely beating out Soundcloud who had 469!
We're suckers for Pitchfork! 73.8% of participants have friends they can comfortably discuss music with. We are also a part of other communities on Last.fm and Discord! Though, 875 people said they are not part of other communities.
Top 5 TV Shows: The Good Place, Bojack Horseman, Breaking Bad, Parks and Recreation, and The Office Top 5 Movies: Parasite, Mean Girls, La La Land, Titanic, and Interstellar Top 5 Video Games: Animal Crossing, Minecraft, The Sims, Pokemon, and Skyrim Top 5 Musical Acts: Taylor Swift, Charli XCX, Lady Gaga, Lana Del Rey, and Lorde Top 5 Books: Harry Potter, 1984, The Great Gatsby, A Little Life, and Lord of the Rings Lots of you still don't read or have a favorite book!
Maybe what I’ve always thought was gender dysphoria is actually internalized sexism? (24F)
EDIT: Thank you all SO MUCH for your perspectives and advice! You’ve all given me a LOT to think about. I have a lot of self-work to do but you’ve all encouraged me so much, I feel like I can do this. I will take your advice and do what I can to find a good therapist that specializes in gender issues. I will learn to be ok with uncertainty and reject labels... and most importantly find out what makes ME happy and what I want out of life. I didn’t think I would get so many great and loving responses. I’m very very grateful for all of you and for this experience. I’m feeling much better now. Thank you all so very much ❤️ I’ve been having a hard time dealing with this and I am exhausted. If I don’t explain something coherently please let me know and I will try to do better. Some important background: I was raised in Puerto Rico in an independent fundamental baptist cult, specifically the Bob Jones University kind, so I was not only subjected to horrible teachings about gender roles from toddler age until my junior year of college, I was incredibly isolated from any other kinds of people, ideas, and ways of life. My earliest thoughts on gender started when I was eight and found myself wishing that there was something I could be other than a man or a woman. Something in-between. I think I might have been frustrated, as my little tomboy self usually was, over the unfairness of always having to wear skirts and dresses and having to put up with playing Princesses or Tea Party with my sisters instead of Knights and Dragons like I wanted to. From the wife training classes I was made to take at 13, to always having my physical boundaries disrespected, to being taught that everything bad that happens in the world happens because a woman made a decision for herself, to watching independent women be called Jezebels, to having older men asking my father to “court” me (as a minor) and my parents seeing no issue with it aside from the fact they didn’t want me to “court” anybody regardless of age until halfway through Bible college, to being encouraged by my Bible college professors to adopt anti-feminist ideology, and not to mention the trauma from sexual abuse... It’s no wonder I’ve had issues with my femininity. Once I left Bible college and the cult and started educating myself on feminism, I started to feel much worse about myself. I hated my body. Seeing myself naked and being reminded that I have a “feminine” figure with breasts made me sick. Male attention made me uncomfortable. Seeing women sexualized in any and every context made me mad, despite being attracted to women myself. I still experience these things now but I’ve gotten a little better at stuffing them away. But no matter what I’ve done, the depersonalization and hatred of my body and the agony of being seen as a woman have continued to haunt me. I’ve cut my hair, I started binding and wearing men’s clothes, and for a while I told everyone I was genderfluid. It helped for a little bit but I then realized that my “dysphoria” wasn’t as bad as what real trans people go through and I stopped. There are also things about being a woman that I like now. I love having breasts in a sexual context, I love being feminine in the bedroom, I learned to love wearing dresses and makeup, and I really want to be a wife and mom someday. I feel like I couldn’t have these things if I was trans. Maybe that’s internalized transphobia, maybe not. I don’t know, and I don’t really care. Being trans isn’t an option for me. With the way that trans people are treated in our society, specifically non-binary trans people who choose not to undergo HRT or gender affirmation surgery, why would I make my life harder than it has to be? But the feelings I’ve named “dysphoria” for so long still haven’t gone away. Women being sexualized or sexualizing themselves still makes me uncomfortable. Being referred to as a woman still seems fundamentally wrong to me. I still hate my body for the most part. I’ve never felt I belonged in groups of women and I don’t have any friends who are cis women. I can’t tell if these feelings are because I may still subconsciously believe that to be a woman is bad, or if I’m simply not a woman at all. And I don’t know how to find that out. I’m just tired of feeling this way. Has anyone else experienced this? Is this even gender dysphoria? How do I become comfortable in my womanhood? Thanks for reading this. Even if there’s no solid solution, it’s a relief to just vent and get this out here and see people’s responses to it. TL;DR: I was raised with toxic gender roles and suffered sexual abuse, now I have what appears to be gender dysphoria but might just be internalized sexism. Which is it? How do I get rid of it?
I don't think I'll ever be okay with being nonbinary
Hi, I'm a nonbinary person and I've been out for over 15 years, starting when I was a pretty young kid, and I hate it. I hate it a lot. I don't think there's anything wrong with being nonbinary at all, but I wish constantly that I could be a cis woman or a trans man. I'm tired of having dysphoria that can't be fixed. Complete genital nullification? Not an option for AFAB people. Even if it was, I'm a very sexual person so I'd have to struggle knowing I'd either never have a satisfying sex life again or I'd always be dysphoric, so it's like I can't win. Maintaining complete androgyny since Im extremely dysphoric about both male and female traits? Almost impossible. I know people are going to think me not getting nipple grafts when I'm able to get top surgery is strange, but that doesn't bother me much. Had to stop HRT because of financial issues. I can't get insurance anyway because America hates poor disabled people and my state didn't expand medicaid, so even the things that are actually possible to fix can't be taken care of. I'm tired of having to be out to everyone. I don't want to have to be out to everyone I interact with regularly, but it's either that or dysphoria. I'm not an "out and proud" kind of person (though I think it's great that some people are). I wish I could be binary so I could be stealth and have, well, dysphoria that surgery actually exists for. Ideally I'd be cis, but yknow. I'm tired of people acting like me being nonbinary means I only want a partial transition. I have dysphoria about all the same things as a binary person, but instead of wanting things of the opposite sex, I just want everything gone. I'm tired of people thinking nonbinary means "less dysphoric"when most binary friends I've had considered me more dysphoric than them by far. I'm tired of being told I'm "invading trans spaces" when I'm literally a trans person, or being told I have "nothing in common with binary people at all" despite having a ton of similarities. I'm tired of being called an attention seeker when I've been out for over 15 fucking years. I'm tired of people assuming there's some other mental health issue causing me to be like this. Guess what? I went to therapy for years. I have a gender dysphoria diagnosis, and my therapists didn't believe me being nonbinary was a result of any other issues. I'm tired of being assumed to be privileged with no other issues in my life because I'm nonbinary when I'm a physically disabled and deformed person living in poverty. I'm tired of being told I'm just a gender nonconforming trans man or cis woman when that's not at all what I am, even though I wish I could be. I'm tired of being told I'm "in denial" about being FTM or faking being trans and actually cis. I'm tired of being told to just "choose to live as male or female because ones gotta be better than the other" when both are just as bad and both make me absolutely miserable. I wish I could just be a man or a woman so fucking bad. I don't care that I'm trans, but I care that I'm a trans person who can't ever fix certain issues and can't ever be stealth. I've tried to force myself to be both male and female because I hate being nonbinary so much. I've prayed to wake up a trans man or a cis woman and obviously that didn't do any good. I'd be fine with being nonbinary if a way to fix my problems, especially my bottom dysphoria existed, but it doesn't, and so I'm just supposed to suffer apparently. I'm so tired of the bullshit too but it's just a minor annoyance compared to the dysphoria. Sometimes I can deal with it well, and sometimes I can't, but now is one of those times I just need to vent.
The Importance of Freeform Character Creation in Cyberpunk 2077
I'm pretty sure people talked about this subject when the gender-optionless character creator was announced a while back, but I could find anything and maybe i have something unique to say. If not, let me know and I'll delete the post. I actually made this post a comment a day ago but I think that whole post got deleted so my comment's gone, too. I've been seeing arguments about why genital customization is necessary, and the sexual nature of Cyberpunk 2077's universe. I can understand where these arguments are stemming from, especially from people who prefer gameplay and presentation over lore, immersion, and worldbuilding. Every facet of a game takes time and money to implement. Resources spent on one thing could have been spent somewhere else, and if an element is unused/underused/ignored, then it is effectively wasted resources. In this case, genital customization that you can't even see or really interact with at all outside character creation feels like a waste. Like getting a butt tattoo in a game that's never-nude. However, this game is cyberpunk and cyberpunk is all about rebellion, using technology (whether digital or analogue) to advance beyond nature's intentions, and pure, uninhibited personal freedom. The societies of cyberpunk, megacorporation-run dystopian urban wastelands, aren't free at all, but that is the role of the cyberpunk: to battle that oppression and wrest their freedom from the chains of society. As a fiction, this narrative can be very cathartic or eye-opening for many people. Sex is a part of that. But, perhaps more broadly, total character customization, even parts you won't necessarily use, are a reflection of that freedom and rebellion. Cyberpunk 2077's genderless character creation is a game-changer on a fundamental level. We're so used to binary character representation in games. Boy or girl. Gay or straight. Up or down. It's two-dimensional and not reflective of actual human experience. No fiction, or even art, can be a total reflection of human experience, but our job as artists is to constantly strive for greater heights, to push the envelope on what is expected, "normal." And I think that's a little cyberpunk in and of itself, too. Without strict, binary gender selection, many people will get to create a more authentic experience for themselves than they have ever before. As a trans woman, I now get to be in a game. Trans characters exist in games (Poison, Birdo, Krem) but they've never been protagonists, and certainly never custom protagonists. This is a way to implement trans identities in numerous ways without explicitly making a "trans" option available at gender selection. In fact, having that option would probably result in some stereotypes being reinforced in terms of body diversity and gender presentation. But, with this subtle, loose body construction with voice actor selection, it's easier to place a queer experience without making it explicit. Queer, cis, gender-fluid; all these identities can be represented simultaneously. Maybe your meticulously crafted micro-penis may never see the light of day in-game, but having that customization there says something about the themes of the game, the messages it wants to tell, and an avenue of representation for people who have been long ignored. This isn't about sex. It's about freedom. I think that's worth the extra effort.
A trans person's measured take on the trans sports issue
So first of all this post was inspired by GGExMachina's brief statement on the issue:
For example, it is objectively the case that biological men have a physical advantage over women. Yet if someone points this out and suggests that transgender people shouldn’t be allowed to fight in women’s UFC, or women’s soccer or weightlifting competitions or whatever, suddenly you’re some kind of evil monster. Rather than saying that of course trans people shouldn’t be bullied and that we could perhaps have a trans olympics (like the Paralympics and Special Olympics), we are expected to lie.
I've found that this position is incredibly popular among liberals/left-leaning people, especially here on reddit. It seems like, once or twice a month, like clockwork, a thread stating more or less the same thing on /unpopularopinion or /offmychest will get thousands of upvotes. And while I completely understand the thought process that leads otherwise left-leaning people to come to such conclusions, I feel like the issue has been, broadly speaking, dishonestly presented to the general public by a mixture of bad-faith actors and people who have succumbed to the moral panic. And, as I've seen, there are plenty of people in this subreddit and elsewhere who are itching to be as supportive as they possibly can to the trans community but find themselves becoming very disillusioned by this particular issue. By making this post I hope to present a more nuanced take on the issue, not only in regards to my personal beliefs on what kinds of policies are best to preserve fairness in women's sports but also in regards to shining a light on how this issue is often times dishonestly presented in an attempt to impede the progression of pro-trans sentiments in the cultural zeitgeist.
Sex & Gender
The word "transgender" is an umbrella term that refers to people whose gender identities differ from those typically associated with the sex they were assigned at birth. According to the 2015 U.S. Transgender Survey, the approximate composition of "the trans community" in the United States is 29% Transgender men (Female-to-Male), 33% Transgender women (Male-to-Female), and 35% non-binary. (The remaining 3% were survey respondents who self-identified as "crossdressers", who were still included in the survey on the grounds of being gender non-conforming) While non-binary people, as a group, are probably deserving of their own separate post. the focus of this post will be on trans men and trans women. I will also be primarily focusing on transgender people who pursue medical transition with Hormone-Replacement-Therapy, as they are most relevant to the issue of sports. (Mind that while the majority of binary trans people fit into this camp, there is a sizable minority of trans people who do not feel the need to medically transition.) What do trans people believe about Gender? The views of transgender people in regards to Gender are actually pretty varied, although the most prominent positions that I've personally seen are best summed up into two different camps:
The "Trans-Medical" camp
Transgender people who fall into this camp usually consider Gender Dysphoria to be the defining factor of what makes somebody trans. The best way I can describe this camp is that they sort of view being transgender akin to being intersex. Only whereas an intersex person would be born with a disorder that affects the body, a trans person is born with a disorder that affects the brain. Trans people in this camp often times put an emphasis on a clinical course for treatment. For example, a person goes to a psychologist, gets diagnosed with gender dysphoria, starts hormone replacement therapy, pursues surgery, then emerges from this process of either cured of the gender dysphoria or, at the very least, treated to the fullest extent of medical intervention. This position is more or less the original position held by trans activists, back in the day when the word "transsexual" was used instead of "transgender". Though many younger trans people, notably YouTuber Blaire White, also hold this position. Under this position, sex and gender are still quite intertwined, but a trans man can still be considered a man, and a trans woman a woman, under the belief that sex/gender doesn't just refer to chromosomal sex and reproductive organs, but also to neurobiology, genitalia, and secondary sex characteristics. So someone who is transgender, according to this view, is born with the physical characteristics of one sex/gender but the neurobiology of another, and will change their physical characteristics, to the fullest extent medically possible, to match the neurobiology and therefore cure the individual of gender dysphoria. Critics of this position argue that this mentality is problematic due to being inherently exclusive to transgender people who do not pursue medical transition, whom are often times deemed as "transtrenders" by people within this camp. Many people find it additionally problematic because it is also inherently exclusive to poorer trans people, particularly those in developing nations, who may not have access to trans-related medical care. Note that there are plenty of trans people who *do* have access to medical transition, but nevertheless feel as if the trans community shouldn't gatekeep people who cannot afford or do not desire medical transition, thus believing in the latter camp.
The "Gender Identity" camp
I feel like this camp is the one most popularly criticized by people on the right, but is also probably the most mainstream. It is the viewpoint held by many more left-wing trans people, (Note that in the aforementioned 2015 survey, only 1% of trans respondents voted Republican, so trans people are largely a pretty left-wing group, therefore it makes sense that this position would be the most mainstream) but also notably held by American Psychological Association, the American Psychiatric Association, GLAAD, and other mainstream health organizations and activist groups. While people in this camp still acknowledge that medical transition to treat gender dysphoria can still be a very important aspect of the transgender experience, it's believed that the *defining* experience is simply having a gender identity different from the one they were assigned at birth. "Gender identity" simply being the internal, personal sense of being a man, a woman, or outside the gender binary. Many people in this camp, though, still often maintain that gender identity is (at least partially) neurobiological, but differ from the first camp in regards to acknowledging that the issue is less black & white than an individual simply having a "male brain" or a "female brain", but rather that the neurological characteristics associated with gender exist on more of a spectrum, thus leaving the door open to gender non-conforming people who do not identify as trans, as well as to non-binary people. This is where the "gender is a spectrum" phrase comes from. "52 genders" is a popular right-wing meme that makes fun of this viewpoint, however it is important to note that many trans and non-binary people disagree with the idea of quantifying gender identity to such an absurd amount of individual genders, rather more simply maintaining that there are men, women, and a small portion of people in-between, with a few words such as "agender" or "genderqueer" being used to describe specific identities/presentations within this category. It's also noteworthy that not all people in this camp believe that neurobiology is the be-all-end-all of gender identity, as many believe that the performativity of gender also plays an integral role in one's identity. (That gender identity is a mixture of neurobiology and performativity is a position held by YouTuber Contrapoints) Trans people and biological sex So while the aforementioned "Gender Identity" viewpoint has become quite popularized among liberals and leftists, I have noticed a certain rhetorical mentality/assumption become prevalent alongside it, especially among cisgender people who consider themselves trans-allies: "Sex and Gender are different. A trans woman is a woman who is biologically male. A trans man is a man who is biologically female" When "Sex" is defined by someone's chromosomes, or the sex organs they were born with, this is correct. However, there is a pretty good reason why the trans community tends to prefer terms like "Assigned Male at Birth" rather than "Biologically Male". This is done not only for the inclusion of people who are both intersex and transgender (For example, someone can be born intersex but assigned male based on the existence of a penis or micropenis), but also due to the aforementioned viewpoint on divergent neurobiology being the cause for gender dysphoria. Those reasons are why the word "Assigned" is used. But the reason why it's "Assigned Male/Female At Birth" instead of just "Assigned Male/Female" is because among the trans community there exists an understanding of the mutability of sexually dimorphic biology that the general population is often ignorant to. For example, often times people (especially older folks) don't even know of the existence of Hormone Replacement Therapy, and simply assume that trans people get a single "sex change operation" that, (for a trans woman) would just entail the removal of the penis and getting breast implants. Therefore they imagine the process to be "medically sculpting a male to look female" instead of a more natural biological process of switching the endocrine system form male to female or vice versa and letting the body change over the course of multiple years. It doesn't help that, for a lot of older trans people (namely Caitlyn Jenner, who is probably the most high profile trans person sadly), the body can be a lot more resistant to change even with hormones so they *do* need to rely on plastic surgery a lot more to get obvious results) So what sexually dimorphic bodily characteristics can one expect to change from Hormone Replacement Therapy? (Note that there is a surprising lack of studies done on some of the more intricate changes that HRT can, so I've put a "*" next to the changes that are anecdotal, but still commonly and universally observed enough among trans people [including myself for the MTF stuff] to consider factual. I've also put a "✝" next to the changes that only occur when people transition before or during puberty) Male to Female:
Breast development and nipple/areolar enlargement, including in some people, the development of mammary glands and the ability to breastfeed
Thinning/slowed growth of facial/body hair
Cessation/reversal of male-pattern scalp hair loss
Softening of skin/decreased oiliness and acne
Decreased muscle mass/strength
Widening and rounding of the pelvis
Changes in mood, emotionality, and behavior (anecdotally crying is way easier to do)
Decreased sex drive (anecdotally, taking progesterone helps a lot in regards to regaining sex drive, though attraction is often noted as being experienced a bit differently than how it feels with testosterone)
Decreased sperm production/fertility
Decreased testicle size
Decreased penis size
Decreased prostate gland size
Voice changes (As far as I've heard, most people only experience minor changes from transitioning in adulthood, so it's common to do vocal training on top of everything to actually get a female-passing voice. I'll add a ✝ here since vocal changes seem to be a lot stronger in people who transition before/during puberty)
Changes in body odor (It's been documented that men and women often times have different smelling body odor, and trans people commonly notice a change in this regard) *
Changes in how arousal, sexual pleasure, and orgasms are experienced *
Changes in facial complexion *
Slight changes in hair color, texture, or curl *
Slight changes in eye color *
Changes in alcohol/drug tolerance *
Experiencing pubescent skeletal development and bodily growth along female-typical lines, including both bodily size/shape and facial bone/cartilage features ✝
Female to Male:
Growth of facial/body hair
male pattern scalp hair loss (in some individuals)
Roughening of the skin and prominence of veins
Increased muscle mass/strength
Changes in mood, emotionality, and behavior (I forget the source for this sadly but I remember reading that trans men are significantly more likely to commit crimes and get into fights after starting HRT)
Increased sex drive
Cessation of ovulation and menstruation
Acne (especially in the first few years of therapy)
Alterations in blood lipids (cholesterol and triglycerides)
Increased red blood cell count
Deepening of the voice
Enlargement of the clitoris
Changes in body odor *
Changes in how arousal, sexual pleasure, and orgasms are experienced *
Changes in facial complexion *
Slight changes in hair color, texture, or curl *
Slight changes in eye color *
Changes in alcohol/drug tolerance *
Experiencing male pubescent skeletal development and bodily growth along male-typical lines, and closure of growth plates ✝
Often times, when the whole "transgender people in sports" discussion arises, a logical error is made when *all* transgender people are assumed to be "biologically" their birth sex. For example, when talking about trans women participating in female sports, these instances will be referred to as cases of "Biological males competing against females". As mentioned before, calling a trans woman "biologically male" strictly in regards to chromosomes or sex organs at birth would be correct. However, not only can it be considered derogatory (the word "male" is colloquially a shorthand for "man", after all), but there are many instances where calling a post-HRT transgender person "biologically [sex assigned at birth]" is downright misleading. For example, hospitals have, given transgender patients improper or erroneous medical care by assuming treatment based on birth sex where treatment based on their current endocrinological sex would have been more adequate. Acute Clinical Care of Transgender Patients: A Review
Conclusions and relevance: Clinicians should learn how to engage with transgender patients, appreciate that unique anatomy or the use of gender-affirming hormones may affect the prevalence of certain disease (eg, cardiovascular disease, venous thromboembolism, and osteoporosis), and be prepared to manage specific issues, including those related to hormone therapy. Health care facilities should work toward providing inclusive systems of care that correctly identify and integrate information about transgender patients into the electronic health record, account for the unique needs of these patients within the facility, and through education and policy create a welcoming environment for their care.
Some hosptials have taken to labeling the biological sex of transgender patients as "MTF" (for post-HRT trans women) and "FTM" (for post-HRT trans men), which is a much more medically useful identifier compared to their sex assigned at birth. In regards to the sports discussion, I've seen *multiple threads* where redditors have backed up their opinions on the subject of trans people in sports with studies demonstrating that cis men are, on average, more athletically capable than cis women. Which I personally find to be a pathetic misunderstanding of the entire issue. Because we're not supposed to be comparing the athletic capabilities of natal males to natal females, here. We're supposed to comparing the athletic capabilities of *post-HRT male-to-females* to natal females. And, if we're going to really have a fact-based discussion on the matter, we need to have separate categories for pre-pubescent and post-pubescent transitioners. Since, as mentioned earlier, the former will likely have different skeletal characteristics compared to the latter. The currentInternational Olympic Committee(IOC) model for trans participation, and criticisms of said model (I quoted the specific guidelines from the International Cycling Union, but similar guidelines exist for all Olympic sports)
Elite Competition At elite competition levels, members may have the opportunity to represent the United States and participate in international competition. They may therefore be subject to the policies and regulations of the International Cycling Union (UCI) and International Olympic Committee (IOC). USA Cycling therefore follows the IOC guidelines on transgender athletes at these elite competition levels. For purposes of this policy, international competition means competition sanctioned by the UCI or competition taking place outside the United States in which USA Cycling’s competition rules do not apply. The IOC revised its guidelines on transgender athlete participation in 2015, to focus on hormone levels and medical monitoring. The main points of the guidelines are: Those who transition from female to male are eligible to compete in the male category without restriction. It is the responsibility of athletes to be aware of current WADA/USADA policies and file for appropriate therapeutic use exemptions. Those who transition from male to female are eligible to compete in the female category under the following conditions: The athlete has declared that her gender identity is female. The declaration cannot be changed, for sporting purposes, for a minimum of four years. The athlete must demonstrate that her total testosterone level in serum has been below 10 nmol/L for at least 12 months prior to her first competition (with the requirement for any longer period to be based on a confidential case-by-case evaluation, considering whether or not 12 months is a sufficient length of time to minimize any advantage in women’s competition). The athlete's total testosterone level in serum must remain below 10 nmol/L throughout the period of desired eligibility to compete in the female category. Compliance with these conditions may be monitored by random or for-cause testing. In the event of non-compliance, the athlete’s eligibility for female competition will be suspended for 12 months.
Valid criticisms of the IOC model are usually based on the fact that, even though hormone replacement therapy provokes changes to muscle mass, it does *not* shrink the size of someone's skeleton or cardiovascular system. Therefore an adult-transitioned trans woman could, even after losing all levels of male-typical muscle mass, still have an advantage in certain sports if she had an excessively large skeletal frame, and was participating in a sport where such a thing would be advantageous. Additionally, the guidelines only require that athletes be able to demonstrate having had female hormone levels for 12-24 months, which isn't necessarily long enough to completely lose musculature gained from training on testosterone (anecdotally it can take 2-4 years to completely lose male-typical muscle mass) So the IOC guidelines don't have any safeguard against, for example, a trans woman training with testosterone as the dominant hormone in her body, and then taking hormones for the bare minimum time period and still having some of the advantage left. Note that, while lower level sports have had (to the glee of right-wing publications sensationalizing the issue) instances of this exact thing happening, in the 16 years since these IOC guidelines were established, not a single transgender individual has won an Olympic medal Also note that none of the above criticisms of the IOC policy would apply in regards to the participation of pre-pubescent-transitioned trans women. After all, male-pubescent bone structure and cardiovascular size, and male-typical muscle levels, can't possibly exist if you never went through male puberty to begin with. What could better guidelines entail, to best preserve fairness in female sports while avoiding succumbing to anti-trans moral panic?
The most extreme way for female sports to reasonably go about addressing this issue would be to only allow for the participation of transgender women who are documented to have, with puberty blockers, carried out their transitions without having gone past Tanner Stage II or III of male puberty.
Sports leagues willing to be a bit looser could accept adult transitioners under the stipulation that their bodily measurements in regards to certain skeletal features fit within a standard deviation of the cis-female average
Sports leagues willing to be even looser could copy the IOC guidelines, but require documentation of having gone through HRT for a greater period of time rather than just the 12 months, (3 years would probably be better) to guarantee full loss of male muscle mass
In my personal opinion, sports leagues should pick one of the three above options depending on what best fits the nature of the sport and the eliteness of the competition. For example, extremely competitive contact sports might be better off going with the first option, but an aerobic sport such as marathon running would probably be fine with the third option.
How this issue has been misrepresented by The Right
Right-wing rhetoric surrounding this issue assumes that the issue exists as an innate consequence of trans activism (Ie. "This is what the left is pushing!") rather than as a result of individual sports leagues failing to have solid rules for participation. Often times, certain low-level sports leagues have failed to even measure trans athlete's hormone levels, and have, in some cases, let completely male-bodied athletes participate as women. This is obviously the fault of these specific sports leagues failing to implement or enforce reasonable rules for participation, but right-wing articles surrounding such instances will act as if these occurrences are an ideological goal of the pro-trans left. This runs off of the assumption that a majority of trans people and "the left" are specifically pushing for muscular males (who merely "identify" as women, and nothing more) to dominate female sports. When, in reality, we really had nothing to do with these occurrences, and the majority of trans people would even likely agree with the sentiments expressed in this post. Additionally, accepting the gender identities of trans people is something you can do irregardless of your opinion on the sports issue.
Over-exaggeration of the problem. The issue is often sensationalized to the extent of coming off as a call to action, to stop the trans activists and their SJW bullies from ruining female sports! They're coming after your daughter's lacrosse team! In reality, out of the hundreds of thousands (perhaps even more) of sports competitions that exist in the United States and throughout the world, an incredibly small percentage of them are actually ruined by trans participants. You hear the stories of the 6'5'' trans woman with the broad frame winning a weightlifting competition, but not of the hundreds of more average-sized trans-female athletes turning out more mediocre performances. This isn't to say that the niche cases don't present a problem that indeed needs to be fixed, but presenting the problem as more prevalent than it actually is acts as a rhetorical strategy meant to provoke anger as well as a more dramatic response. Buying into this rhetorical strategy, especially if you're is already somewhat ignorant to the issue to begin with, will make it much easier to convince you of accepting drastic solutions to the problems. Ie. "ONLY XX CHROMOSOMES ALLOWED IN FEMALE SPORTS", instead of any of the three more measured approaches suggested above. The provoked response of anger is also meant to turn people off of accepting trans rights in general.
Infuriatingly, I've noticed that right-wing rhetoric usually doesn't even mention pre-pubescent transitioners at all. Like, these people are fine with acknowledging the existence of puberty blockers when they're trying to make them illegal, but they refuse to talk about them in regards to the sports issue. There have been cases where conservative jurisdictions have banned the participation of all transgender students in girl's sports, period. Meaning a transgender girl who never went through male puberty at all, and has pre-pubescent hormone levels as a result of puberty blockers, could be banned from participating in girl's sports, while in reality said trans girl could possibly even be at a disadvantage compared to the cis girls, as a result of not even having started puberty yet. Nonsensical. And liberal allies are at fault of this too, I've noticed. I've seen countless reddit threads where left-leaning people voice their take on the trans sports issue without mentioning the existence of pre-pubescent transitioners. It's honestly ridiculous.
The sports issue is also used as an excuse to say derogatory things about trans women that would be less justifiable in other instances.
I'll use Joe Rogan as an example of this last thing:
She calls herself a woman but... I tend to disagree. And, uh, she, um... she used to be a man but now she has had, she's a transgender which is (the) official term that means you've gone through it, right? And she wants to be able to fight women in MMA. I say no f***ing way. I say if you had a dick at one point in time, you also have all the bone structure that comes with having a dick. You have bigger hands, you have bigger shoulder joints. You're a f***ing man. That's a man, OK? You can't have... that's... I don't care if you don't have a dick any more... If you want to be a woman in the bedroom and you know you want to play house and all of that other s*** and you feel like you have, your body is really a woman's body trapped inside a man's frame and so you got a operation, that's all good in the hood. But you can't fight chicks. Get the f*** out of here. You're out of your mind. You need to fight men, you know? Period. You need to fight men your size because you're a man. You're a man without a dick. I'm not trying to discriminate against women in any way, shape, or form and I'm a big supporter of women's fighting. I loved watching that Ronda Rousey/Liz Carmouche fight. But those are actual women. Those are actual women. And as strong as Ronda Rousey looks, she's still looks to me like a pretty girl. She's a beautiful girl who happens to be strong. She's a girl! [Fallon Fox] is not a girl, OK? This is a [transgender] woman. It's a totally different specification.
Calling a trans woman a "man", and equating transitioning to merely removal of the dick, and equating trans women's experiences as women as "playing house" and "being a woman in the bedroom". These things are obviously pretty transphobic, and if Rogan had said these things about just any random trans woman his statements would have likely been more widely seen in that light. But when it's someone having an unfair advantage in sports, and the audience is supposed to be angry with you, it's much more socially acceptable thing to say such things. But the problem is, when you say these kinds of things about one trans woman, you're essentially saying those derogatory things about all trans women by extension. It's the equivalent of using an article about a black home invader who murdered a family as an excuse to use a racial slur. Now, I'm not saying that Rogan necessarily did this on purpose, in fact I'm more inclined to believe that it was done moreso due to ignorance rather than having an actual ideological agenda. But since then, many right wing ideologues who do have an ideological agenda have used this issue as an excuse to voice their opinions on trans people while appearing to be less bigoted. Ie. "I'm not trying to be a bigot or anything and I accept people's rights to live their lives as they see fit, but we NEED to keep men out of women's sports", as a sly way to call trans women "men". Additionally, doing this allows them to slip in untrue statements about the biology of trans women. I mean, first of all in regards to the statement "You have bigger hands, you have bigger shoulder joints", obviously even in regards to post-pubescent transitioners, not every trans woman is going to have bigger hands and shoulder joints than every cis woman (My hands are actually smaller than my aunt's!). It's just that people who go through male puberty on average tend to have bigger hands and shoulder joints compared to people who go through female puberty. But over-exaggerating the breadth of sexual dimorphism, as if males and females are entirely different species to each-other, helps to paint the idea of transitioning in a more nonsensical light. I hope this thread has presented this issue in a better light for anyone reading it. Let me know if you have any thoughts/criticisms of my stances or the ways I went about this issue.
My parents refuse to acknowledge that they’re transphobic/homophobic.
TW: Transphobia, homophobia I (22F) am a straight and cis recent college graduate who is living with my parents (62M, 60F) while I save up for an apartment. My parents are very quick to say they are not WASPs (both were raised Catholic and working class) but that doesn’t mean they don’t have the WASP tendency of ignoring the outside world. Mom & Dad will often complain about gay people, ask why they have to “show off their lifestyles” to everyone (ie pride month, parades), and will become visibly disgusted when they see a gay couple do as much as hold hands in public. When I call them out on their behavior, they will point to one of my mother’s cousins who is a lesbian, has lived with her partner for over 30 years and keeps in relative close contact with my mom as a reason for why they couldn’t possibly be homophobic. Additionally, my mom’s best friend (who died a few years ago) has a child who recently came out as non-binary and now goes by the pronouns they/them. Mom learned about this via a text with the friend’s son (sibling of the non-binary child) and immediately called them weird. When I explained to her what it means, she continued to call them weird and brought it up to my father, ending up with them joking and laughing about “the alphabet people”. She hasn’t stopped misgendering the child, all the while paying lip service to the idea that she wants to support her late best friend’s kids. On top of all of that, my parents laugh at the idea of transgender people, and when we were introduced to a trans woman out in public, my dad called her a “he/she” once we were home. When I told him she was a woman, he laughed and said, “Maybe to you, but to me that is a he/she.” They’re also classist and racist in too many ways for me to get into. In order to try to not get into a fight, I’ve avoided bringing up these topics at every turn, but they always come up. Their whole idea is that as long as they’re courteous in public, they can be as bigoted as they want in private. Both of my siblings are out of the house. One is conservative and agree with them on all of this, while the other is non confrontational, so that only leaves me. Leaving the house isn’t an option right now, I’m still trying to save enough money to find a good place. What can/should I do?
a non-transphobic defense of the existence of the late r/GenderCritical subreddit (the necessity of seeing motherhood as a class)
I want to first assert that I am not a radfem TERF. Before you judge my politics, let me take you through what I believe about gender.
There is no gender essentialism. Humans are like animals. We do not have souls. We do not have a gender inside of us. I am a woman but I don't 'feel like a woman' inside me. In fact, at some point I used to identify publicly as non-binary because I thought it was a fact of reality that everyone was empty of this thing called 'gender' inside of us. I subscribed to anti-humanist ideas.
Corollary: I reject any notion of a Cartesian spirit or soul or spiritual gender as non-materialist.
Gender is expressed through sex and sexuality. You are born a certain sex and with a sexuality that is both innate (gay or straight) but also capable of developing or changing during pubescence based on experiences that shape your ego (fetishes). In nature, it makes sense for animals to change their appearance (sex) to achieve sexual gratification (reproduction). Our bodies know more than we can say because sexuality is beyond language and not subservient to what our ego thinks or logically demands. If you were born a homosexual and were an effeminate child, you might become a trans woman because you are attracted to heterosexual men or bears. If that isn't the case and you are attracted to mostly straight women and have no desire for SRS, then maybe your desire to transition is a sexual expression based on a desire to conceal your sex for the sake of non-traditional sexual intercourse that you find erotic. THAT IS OK. I do very kinky stuff in bed as well. I am also incapable of admitting what I do in bed because my ego wants to protect my fetishes that are dependent on secrecy.
Corollary: There is no concrete reality to 'gender,' it is either expressed physically through sex or physically through sexuality (actions and communication geared towards sex).
Non-binary gender identity has arisen because of how the PMC class engages in immaterial labor. Since there is no reality to gender outside of sex or sexuality (the expression of sex drive), we can't 'perceive' our gender identity, we can only enact it. The present PMC class of college educated women and non-binary queer people are no longer engaging in productive labor that still resembles traditional 'labor' and not just clicking things on a screen or typing posts for Woke McDonald's. They no longer have to engage in reproductive labor or care labor, and when they do, they turn it into a microtransaction to let capial manage their hearts (hey, paypal me for explaining this to you, cis man). Women now have to be seen as equal subjects under capital because they need to be equally subject to capital's formal exploitation through the wage. When a woman says, "I must not be anything because I don't feel anything inside," it's because gender isn't essential and isn't something you feel like a soul. You feel nothing because you are depressed because you can't have kids under capitalism and are kind of sexually frustrated, and because you aren't engaging in labor that makes you feel like a 'woman' (mothering and reproductive labor), or a million other reasons that have to do with your working conditions and the stupid life you're being forced to eke out. If you are like me, 'doing things' that express 'gender' (sexuality, sex acts, and reproductive labor) will actually make you 'feel like a woman.' If you aren't feeling anything, the problem is the job and life you are being forced to live, which is alienated and unnatural. And not all women are meant to be mothers. You need to follow your 'vocation' (what you feel).
Women entered the workforce around the same time the middle class started to boom. The middle class is being replace by the PMC. The PMC require exploitative reproductive practices in order to maintain their family structure and the reproduction of the middle class as a whole. Middle class couples traditionally needed one income to support a family, and their gen X/millennial children need two. Their children are PMC. Due to the falling rate of profit, it now takes two parents' incomes to raise a child in the middle class. There is a generational gap because of the falling rate of profit. PMC jobs were created by the middle class not by increasing labor production directly (more workers, more machines) but through maximizing the techniques used to control labor for profit--- that is why we see the growth of the managerial class, the PMC. Profit is created from unwaged work. The PMC tap into profit by creating microtransactions out of areas of life that used to not be able to be accessed by the wage. This 'technology' (by technology, I mean machines plus the sum total of all science including social science) is what they pay huge sums of future labor (student debt is promising future work/wage) to be able to access. In order to pay back their student debt, PMC women must engage in formal labor in a workplace, even if they have children. This fundamentally changes our social structure because it causes women to outsource their own reproductive labor to working class women. Look at how the median income of college graduates has shifted over the course of the last few decades--- parental incomes ($142,000 for Virginia Tech) are over double the median income at age 34 ($62,000). It now takes two incomes to raise one family, which leads to assortative mating.
Liberation of the working class requires the liberation working mothers from capitalism. Working mothers have it hard. Either we do all of our own reproductive labor (homemaking, childcare, cooking) on top of our formal labor (our job) to provide for our families, or we share that labor with our partner if we are lucky to have one--- and he is also overworked. We know it is impossible to "double our workloads" because we already work as much as we can, so the sad truth is working outside of our families comes at the cost of the work we can do to support our own families, and it is easier to be fired for being a bad employee than it is to be fired for being a bad mom. But there's a third option: maybe we think that we can work hard enough in our jobs to afford better childcare to give our kids an advantage. But a family in Virginia already has to spend 18 percent of their income on childcare for an infant, and nowhere in America does any state provide what is considered affordable childcare (lower than 8 percent of our incomes). If you happen to be college-educated and debt-free, you might be able to make enough at your job to pay other women to do your reproductive labor for you--- you can use apps to hire maids, babysitters, meals, laundry, anything. But when you order a cleaning lady or babysitter to your apartment, you are ignoring the fact that she also has kids. You are paying her as little as possible because you are merely PMC. By nature of you buying her labor away from her own family, you have already ordered the social world into one where some children have better care during their most important formative years. And the working class women who aren't engaging in reproductive labor for the PMC/MC are engaged in working class labor, and the number one thing that prevents working class women from being able to become politically active is they are afraid a strike will threaten their job security, which for them threatens their children's security. Box store and essential workplaces can only strike if they find a way to collectivize childcare and give mutual aid to working women. Working mothers have specific issues that need to be organized around as our own class because we have uteruses that produce capital by producing labor and we are biologically bound to the reproduction of our children.
A UBI for women and familial caregivers (a 'care wage' or 'wages for housework') would be revolutionary. Capitalism is based off of the unpaid/underpaid reproductive labor of women, and would not be able to sustain itself without the exploitation of women beginning at the very origin of the family unit: the working mother. If working class women had a UBI, they could safely go on strike without worrying that their children will starve. If PMC women have a UBI, they can mother their own children and stop outsourcing their reproductive labor to the exploited working class. Religious social conservatives want the protection of the family unit. All of this can be framed as pro-life. Without economic pressure, women can better vet their partners and find good fathers who will provide for them. This UBI should also apply to all single parents and for one partner is a queer co-parenting partnership. It should also apply to all caregivers since 40% of COVID-19 deaths in the U.S. have occurred in nursing homes. We need to bring our elderly back home, and we can only afford to be full-time care providers if we are given a wage for it. If non-violent incarcerated men are also returned to their communities, the need for the state will wither away because working class family units can stabilize society long enough during an interim period until work is locally re-organized between workers based completely on mutual consent and a division of resources based on supporting the most vulnerable members of our society evenly: children.
If hypothetically a UBI for mothers is too problematic for the left, then the left is the problem.
You are not a communist if you are unwilling to make sacrifices for your community. You should be willing to sacrifice if it means over 50% of society (WOMEN AND CHILDREN) would benefit the most. All working class people could be liberated by a UBI for women. If you are less than 1% of the population, you must make your interests coincide with the interests of the working class and stop blocking material progress for women. This broad desire (UBI for mothers) can also be extended beyond sex and sexuality to include queer parents and familial caregivers easily. What prevents people from even imagining the idea of a UBI for mothers is their fear of being called out on being TERFS or being seen as too trad and unwoke. I am a materialist feminist. I am mostly inspired by the Wages for Housework campaign from 70s Italy. I am also pretty trad because I am a heterosexual woman who believes in god (because of fucking Wittgenstein and Simone Weil, please help) who wants to have kids but cannot under capitalism because I don't think it's ethical to give birth to a future worker under capitalism especially because we are on track for global destruction because of climate change. But I would have children under communism in a heartbeat because I think it will look more like stateless socialism, like early christian communities with a division of labor based around our sexual drives and moral agreements (which ultimately should be about affirming life and protecting children). Most queer anarchists I know love the idea of queer separatism anyway. People with different moral agreements on reproduction should form their own communities (even if it means forming communities within cities). I have loved many leftist trans women more than I can possibly ever say. But motherhood is a biological, materialist class. Babies need their mothers. Children need their mothers. Substitutes are ersatz. Adults need their mothers. Before you get offended about this, please think of your own mom and what she has done to support you. Think of how scary it is that women's bodies have to basically cleave in half under the threat of bleeding out in order to produce a baby (and each baby is the production of a future worker, a future member of your community). This understanding of gender also makes sense for working class men. High school guys shoot up their cafeterias because of existential sexual frustration: they know that no matter what they do under capitalism, they will never be able to earn enough to attract a woman who could be a housewife happily for them. There are women who want to be housewives, who would agree to a partnership if it meant they didn't have to engage in productive labor and could focus on the reproduction of their children instead. If we make it possible for working class women to be able to 'depend' on working class men again for a larger income, we can create social harmony. Please don't cancel me, I have already given up everything to organize for communism from within the working class. This is just what I believe.
Hello comrades! Thanks to everyone who filled out the survey. I'll break down the survey below for those who want a transcription of it or for those who want a more organized presentation instead of the raw data. Here is a link to the survey results. For comparison, here is the previous survey. Please discuss your thoughts on the survey in the comments, and also continue the conversation started in the old thread about what you want to see for the sub’s future We had 600 responses to the survey, which given the size of the subscriber base is a statistically significant amount that we can confidently extrapolate from. Question 1: Age demographics We are trending younger than the previous survey, with zoomers making a major jump in demographics at the expense of 26-30 and 31-40 year olds. The early 20s seemed to hold relatively consistent. I am unsure if this means the old people are leaving or if more young people are joining. 25% of us are under 17, 29% are 18-21, 21% are 21-25, 14% are 26-30, and the rest are older. Question 2: Gender Identity Overall, we are very much dominated by men at 79.5% of the sub. There has been a slight decrease in male identification in favour of women and non-binary. But this is definitely a weakness of the sub. We need to work on ways to be more inclusive of non cis-male voices. Question 3: How non-white are we The answer is very mayonnaise at 76% non-PoC. We had an almost 5% drop from a year ago which is great but I think we can do much better. Question 4: LGBTQ+ This one is much better. We seem to have a strong representation from LGBTQ+ folks which is consistent from last year, and it is good to see the number be pushed up by around 4 points from 32% to 36%. Question 5: How non-cis are we Considering around 3% of the population is trans according to GLAAD, we seem to have decent representation on the subreddit at 7.7%. Question 6: Where do we live This question is worth looking at on the google form. They all are, but this one particularly so what with all the different possible answers. Suffice it to say, we are very much situated in the imperial core. This is somewhat problematic but to be expected given the overall reddit userbase. This is something that we should definitely try to combat. Since last year it seems the US portion has decreased by around 5 points to favor eastern europe, canada, and some growth outside the imperial core. Top five regions:
Western Europe and British Isles (tie at 9.8%)
Northern Europe (3.2%)
Question 7: Living environment Largely unchanged from last year, socialism is split roughly evenly between city living and suburbia, with a small but important section living in a rural area. Question 8: English 75% of the sub considers English to be their primary language, which is a slight drop from last year. The top non-english primary languages are as follows in descending order:
Question 9: Religion. We are largely not a religious sub, and the demographics here have largely not changed in the last year. Top religious beliefs (above 1%) are:
Spiritual but not religious- 11%
Roman Catholic- 4%
Sunni Muslim- 1.7%
Honorable mention to the 5 people who wrote in "Materialist" lol, I like you. Question 10: How long have you been a socialist We've shifted down to subscribers having less overall experience with socialism, losing from all categories above 3 years and gaining on all the lower choices. This could be from an influx of new people from the election, and hopefully it does not mean we are losing more experienced folks in large numbers. Half of the sub has been a socialist for either a year or 3-5 years, with relatively even responses for the options on either end of the spectrum Question 11: Education We seem to be an educated group. Almost 50% of the sub either has a college degree or is actively pursuing one, with 12% of us having gone to college without achieving a degree. 20% are currently in secondary education. 7% have or are chasing a graduate degree, and 6% had their education stop at secondary level. Question 12: Employment 37% of us are students who are not employed, and 18% of us are students with a job. 25% of us have a full time job, while 7% have a part time job and 7% are unemployed. Smaller amounts are either self-employed or of a non-working population. Question 13: Relationship to production Thankfully, 85% of us are either working class or dependents of working class folks. 5% are petite-bourgiosie small business owners or self employed. 3% of us are (hopefully class betraying) capitalists. Question 14: Living situation Pretty even split between renting our living situation and living rent free with family/friends. Of the rest, 13% of us have alternate living arrangements such as home ownership or mortgages. 15 and 16: Living conditions The majority of us are at comfortable or adequate arrangements (around 80%), pointing again to reddit's overall demographic. 20% of us would describe their situation as poor. 41% of us did not have difficulty in in our budgets. Top things socialism had difficulty affording over the last few months in descending order:
Necessary repairs such as home and auto
Time for the fun stuff. Top labels people use to describe their politics (over 5%) of socialism are in descending order:
Anarchist and/or Anarcho-Communist
Marxism-Leninism-Maoist and Communalist (tied)
More people are identifying as a tendency from the last survey, which means more people are reading Questoin 18: Who are we reading There were a lot of answers to this one, so I will just list our top ten most widely read or read about comrades
Karl Marx (duh)
Overall as a sub I think we definitely need to read more. Its great that we can recognize the big names on that top ten list, but the real proof of how widely read our sub base is is in the smaller names. There are a lot of people on there I hope to see increase next time! Honorable mentions from the write in list that got more than 2-3 submissions include Richard Wolff, Victor Serge, Daniel DeLeon, Stirner, and Assata Shakur 19: Working with liberals This question not worded very well or needs to be broken up into a few different questions, as working with liberals can take many forms and is something the next survey will take into consideration. Showing up to a protest organized by a liberal NGO is very different than actively campaigning for a Democrat or other capitalist party. This is a question that will definitely change next time. Anyhow, a majority of the sub supports working with liberal capitalist organizations; 40% in a limited capacity and 18% are fully on board for it. A strong majority opposes this kind of involvement, 21% saying they are generally opposed to the idea and 14% taking a principled stance against such tactics. 20: Organization 28% of us are actively organized in some way, which is great! But those are rookie numbers, we gotta pump those up. 29% of us are searching for an org in some way, and 28% are not actively looking but plan on doing so sometime in the future. 12% of us have no intentions of organizing. 21: Unions A disappointingly large 76% of the sub have never been unionized. Given that a quarter of the sub is under 17, that's partially excusable but the rest of us need to get on it! 13% of the sub actively belongs in a union, and 5% have been in one in the past. 8 of us are actively organizing one, good on you! 21: Types of organization For those that are organized, the most popular methods of organizing on socialism appears to be:
Mainstream labor union (45%)
Big tent parties such as DSA (35%)
Non-party organization (20%)
Explicitly radical labor unions (15%)
Tendency specific revolutionary party (14%)
Internationally affiliated party (10%)
Tenants union (4%)
By far the largest stumbling block appears to be lack of options in a given geographic area. There's only one way to fix that however, these things don't just spring up out of the ground fully formed! After that follows more access to information, more free time, too many shitty socialists, too much time spent working, more money, organizations not open enough, and transportation difficulties
Overall people seem to run the full spectrum of satisfaction with their organizations. 45% of those organized are happy with what they got, and 55 either see much room for improvement or are not happy with the organizations.
How should socialism be achieved:
Overall we tend to be more revolutionary. Only a quarter of the sub takes a reformist stance which is good. Almost half the sub is open to seizing power through elections if it is possible, same with those who think we should explicitly have a revolution. Doing so using general strikes seems to win support from everyone. Overall, this is an important question that the sub does seem a bit split on.
The struggles of oppressed groups:
This one had great responses. An overwhelming majority (87%) chose the correct response that socialism must fight form all struggles. There were a few different takes on the **wrong** answers, 7% think these struggles should be ignored until after the revolution and 2% actively call these issues divisive. I will politely yet firmly ask both of the latter to leave, or even better get educated.
I seriously need to consider editing or removing this question because I am not sure what it really achieves. 41% of the sub rejects the existence of bourgeois rights in the first place. 43% acknowledge that free speech is a right but does not trust a capitalist state to honestly enforce it. 18% take an absolutist stance on it, and 22% are happy with how speech is currently treated under capitalism.
There is roughly 2/3 split on this, the majority calling for open borders and the minority calling for some sort of loose restrictions but still maintaining freedom of movement.
Overall, the sub is in favor of planned economies, and are split over the question of more decentralized production for luxury goods or local community needs. Only 8% of the sub is totally against planning. This is a moderate change from the last survey where just over half the sub was for total planning.
Just under half (48%) of the sub is unsure if they will live to see socialism, and 36% of the sub think they will. This is almost exactly the same as last time.
State of the subreddit:
Most users have a positive time here, with 43% giving us a 4/5. This has also not changed much since the last survey. Hooray!
How often do you use the sub:
We see a full spectrum of use. Fairly evenly split between a once or twice a month, a few times a week, and almost every day.
Only 7% of the sub posts, and 31% comments. Not much to say here other than much more people are commenting now than they were a year ago, which is good for how we are able to engage folks!
No Mods No Masters
I have to say I am seriously dissapointed with the subreddit here. Us mods are more or less unelected self appointed regulators, and 2/3 of the subs of a *socialist* subreddit passed on the opportunity to tell us to take our authority and jump in a lake. For shame smh.
There seems to be an overall mandate from the users that we are doing a good job at keeping this a healthy place for socialists to interact with each other. Under 5% think we are doing a poor job.
Largely the same story here, though there is a bit of a jump in dissaproval. Overall the majority of the sub is happy with our stance on liberal politics, and 10% think we are not modding liberals correctly.
US Election and the subreddit:
Sub seems a bit split on this, but overall the mandate appears to be to remove liberal content, emphasize organizing over voting, while not being super aggressive with banning politically center folks. Just over a third (37%) think socdem content should not be removed, but frankly I do not see our policy on supporting capitalist party content changing anytime soon
58% of the sub would be interesting in some form of organized reading circles. Look out for this in the future, we are unsure how this will manifest but something will be decided on. We will probably have a separate thread for organizing this in the future to choose what pieces we should do, but feel free to spitball in the comments for the *form* you would like to see this take. Cheers, Mods Team
Why Choices Still Has a Long Way To Go For Racial and LGBTQ+ Inclusion
Hi, guys! Mistress Mayhem here with a little essay on why Choices still has a long way to go for including diversity in its writing. First of all, I wanted to say I understand why most Choices content seems to be for cisgender, heterosexual, white women. And that is because this demographic is a large portion of the Choices fan base. I’m not far off. I’m a cisgender, homosexual, white woman. I’m lucky because the GL (gender locked) books always give me the gender I want to play as and always have a white option. However, I wanted to talk to you guys about my personal issues with the Choices gameplay and character creation menu and why, even though I love playing most Choices books, I think it has a long way to go. First, let’s talk about race. 1) Most of the black Choices characters are whitewashed and Asian characters might not fit into the demographic they’ve chosen. This is pretty self-explanatory. In the character choices menu, most black characters are made to look pale-skinned and have the characteristics of a white face. By “white face,” I mean they might have an eye color that’s usually associated with a white person or a thin nose, or even white-people hair. My black friends have totally different hair than I do and one of them regularly talks about the struggles of doing black hair, but Choices doesn’t seem to understand this. That, and not all Asian races look the same. I understand the Asian characters probably fit into the money issue (Choices doesn’t want to design 30 different MCs for us, which is also why a lot of books are GL) but someone might want to play as a Korean man but the only option looks Chinese. Because Choices wanted to make one MC and stuck them under the “Asian” umbrella. And when do Indian or Native American people get representation? God bless Naomi Silverhawk. EDIT: a commenter brought to light something very true; that black, white, and Latinx people atop Asians and other races also have different nationalities. I think it would be really cool if there were also biracial and Arabic options for MCs as well. 2) There is a lack of racial understandings or non-fantasy cultural differences in Choices. By “non-fantasy cultural differences,” I’m talking about real and concrete divides between cultures that aren’t explained. Perhaps that’s because things are supposed to be a given already, but the only highlighted cultural barriers between groups of people in Choices are those of fantasy races like in BoLaS or the largely forgotten AtV. Lack of racial understandings is also a bit self-explanatory. A large problem I have with Choices is that important conversations that need to happen never did. Why does the RoD MC, if she’s black, never get a “driving while black” talk from Dad? This would really help Choices’ main audience (cis, white, hetero women) learn about everyday life for people different from them. Now, let’s talk about gender. 3) There are so many GL books with forced LIs that would have been more popular if Choices took the time to broaden their options. Like I said before, I understand this is a money thing. Still, men have largely been excluded from certain Choices books because they have to play as a female MC (which some of them feel really weird about) just to get through an awesome book like Bloodbound, which was so well-received by male and female fans alike that I strongly believe Choices should modify the book to allow male players to have a male character. Let men play Choices comfortably, please, PB. This is what you should be putting your money into. 4) Female players have to pay diamonds to avoid being a DiD (damsel in distress). Pretty self-explanatory. In a lot of the more action-based books, I have to pay money if I don’t want someone to sweep in and recuse my MC like a knight in shining armor. And some of the books are clear cash grabs for this or other reasons. Now, let’s talk about LGBTQ+ inclusion. 5) Choices does a decent job with LB characters (B in particular) but often forces male LIs to GL books. I do understand why they do this. Again, because most of their audience is white, cisgender, heterosexual females. However, if the male LIs could be a bit less forced on female players, I think they’d be better received. I get that Choices likes writing steamy stories (they even have a category on their search bar called just that), but they need to do a better job considering the fact that maybe not all of their players do not want this forced male LI, and maybe some of their players are actually heterosexual men who want to play the story just for the plot and feel uncomfortable and/or awkward with some straight-as-an-arrow Abercrombie and Fitch model chasing them everywhere. 6) Choices under-represents transgender, asexual, non-binary, and other queer people, and suffers from a trend of bisexual erasure. Andy’s awesome. Enough said. A lot of “bi” characters in Choices only seem to be into the opposite sex even though they apparently like both. Many of the girls who like girls are really feminine for some reason (thank you for existing, Imtura). I don’t even remember that asexual guy’s name from TE. And people thought he was going to become a villain just because the MC couldn’t romance him. Also, can we talk about endings? What if our MC is asexual and aromantic and just doesn’t want to romance anyone? Now let’s talk about body types real quick. 7) All the female MCs are super slim women who look really tiny. I really wish there were athletic or larger body types to choose from. And the men all look like Calvin Klein underwear models. Why. Just. Why. Anyway, other body types exist, y’all. You see them every day at your local Walmart. That’s it for me today. Maybe tell me what you think about my points, and if you want to agree to disagree, I’ll do that with you, too. I also want to know what your favorite LI is and why. Mine’s Kamilah Sayeed from Bloodbound because I think she’s a badass, and she’s a clearly bisexual character with a really cool backstory.
I grew up in a country town in butt-fuck nowhere, so unfortunately I've never really understood what being transgender is or even what gender is. Is gender nothing more that the stereotypes associated with binary sexes? If so, would that mean that gender is a largely useless concept in a world that houses those who radically deviate from those stereotypes? And if that were true, then would being transgender be a meaningless distinction? I'm genuinely really sorry for my ignorance on the subject, and I do want to be supportive of trans people. Don't think it's relevant, but I have a cock that I was born with, and long hair / slender features. I have been taken as both a male and a female in my life, and haven't ever been bothered by either label. I sign male on my papers, but 'other' when the option is given, purely because I don't want assumptions made about me based on gender identity. Does that make me cis or something else? Is gender identity a meaningful component of identity for everyone or some people or no one? What resources are best for learning about all this, short of a conversation with an expert since there arn't any where I live.
Cis Attitudes Towards Surgery, or "OMG, you got your surgery, isn't everything just magical now?"
This past week someone posted about cis folks fetishizing trans bodies and it got me thinking about cis attitudes towards surgery, particularly post-op, and how hurtful they can be. There is the attitude that those of us who have had top surgery/whatever surgery should somehow be "grateful" that we were able to do it or that it's an option in the first place. Yes, I am grateful for my surgery and I know I'm privileged within the TRANS community as some guys don't have the means or support to get surgery. But I don't think I should have to feel grateful towards a group of people who collectively seem to make it their mission to not only make getting any SRS surgery harder, but that deny trans people any health care at all. It's hard to sit back and listen to someone tell you how strong you are and how proud they are of you that you were "able" to get surgery while they don't support trans health being included in insurance plans and the like. Like, "gee, thanks, Karen, I never would have been this strong if you hadn't made this so damn hard. I owe you so much." It's like thanking an abuser that you're stronger because of their abuse. It wouldn't have to be such an expensive big deal if this heteronormative society didn't make it that way. Cis people seem to think that transitioning is some magical, exciting journey and it might have its moments sometimes, but I didn't necessarily WANT to get top surgery--I had to in order to save my life. It was not some fun vacation; I could not live in that body anymore. I didn't get excited when I had to drain my savings account and take on credit card debt to pay for it because I didn't have health insurance because it wasn't covered anyway. I didn't get excited when I had to take off work for two weeks and couldn't draw unemployment because hey, this is an elective cosmetic surgery, right? I didn't skip into the surgery center with a big smile on my face because any surgery is terrifying. These surgeries should be considered the medical necessities they are because they are not something we do because we're bored and have the money and want to have an interesting conversation starter. This October will be two years since I got my top surgery and I'm not on hormones right now. My ex and some of our mutual friends treat me like surgery was supposed to be some kind of "fix" or that my body dysphoria, depression, and anxiety would all magically disappear simply because I got my chest removed. Like I can't still be trans. Like I can't be hurt and angry every time I see our community in the news when our rights and humanity are being denied. Like, "oh, you're fixed and all better, no more trans stuff to be worried about." Like there was a problem with me being trans in the first place. I'm still me and surgery didn't change that. I'm still FTM trans, I'm still sensitive, I still embrace androgyny, and I may never decide to take hormones. But that is okay. Just because I got surgery doesn't mean my body automatically shifted to the other side of the binary coin. This is still my body and it still exists on a spectrum. Our transitions are about our personal stories, our relationship with our bodies, and our sense of self--each one is unique. Our bodies are not Legos where you can just stick various parts together.
Pride Month may be over, but the Transpobes are still out there. Here is an excessively long rant for them.
I may be a cis-hetero male, but seeing people hate others based on nothing but gut feelings and old science infuriates me. I will be taking time out of my life to address them directly. My school district has had a lesson on this in our sex ed unit, so I would like to go of that. Starting from the most common argument, "You are either a boy or girl at birth, you can't change or be something else.". Biologists and Psychologists would like to disagree with you. First off, you need to understand that Sex and Gender are different terms, and are two different domains. Sex refers to how you're born. It deals with your chromosomes and genitalia, aka your biological gender. Gender has to do with how you feel, how someone's mind matches up with how they are born. For Sex, there can only be two options, male and female. For Gender, it's a spectrum with endless possibilities. Gender and Sex are two different domains with no correlation to each other. Being Trans or Non-Binary is a result of a mental disorder called Gender Dysphoria, but I'll get to that later. Just remember that just because someone identifies as something you've never seen or heard of before, doesn't be they are lying or don't exist. Being Trans is much more common than being Non-Binary or Gender-Fluid, but just because you've never met either doesn't mean they don't exist. Now I know what you're thinking, "I don't care about how they feel, I'm still gonna refer to them biologically.". Well if you say that you're just an asshole, but that's beside the point. As a society, we identify people based off of their Gender Identity, not on how they are actually born. Sure, there is nothing stopping you from intentionally misgendering a Trans person, but that's just a dick move at that point. Unless you're a doctor, that person's sex shouldn't matter to you. There is no harm in letting a person identify as how to want to be, so just do it for them, ok? This argument isn't as common but I would still like to address it, "Just because you feel a little masculine/feminine, doesn't mean you have to change your identity.". First, being Trans is a lot more than being a little masculine/feminine. The difference here is usually taken to the extreme, along with following other gender roles as well. It's not just acting like the opposite sex, but also feeling it. Secondly, having Gender Dysphoria isn't a choice someone makes. And the only sensible cure for Gender Dysphoria is to transition. Next, I see people you are like, "Gender Dysphoria is classified as mental illness." and use that to justify hate against those communities. Now, Gender Dysphoria is technically a mental illness, but it's just a technicality. Mental illness is just a term used to conditions that affect us every day lives. It doesn't mean anyone that has them is insane/dangerous/abnormal. People with ADHD aren't dangerous or abnormal, but ADHD is technically a mental illness. Saying that Dysphoria is a Mental Illness and using it to bring hate onto Trans people is like calling Doctors drug dealers and using it to envoke hate among Doctors. Yeah, sure it's true, but not in the way you think it is. (It's also been declassified, you can't you this argument anymore) Now, there are the people who say, "The only reason why Gender and Sex mean different things now is that those mentally ill people hijacked the definitions and people were too stupid and accepting.". This argument is most commonly found in the most offensive and bigoted subreddits like MGTOW. But I've seen them a few times on teenagers too, so I'm gonna talk about this. The meanings didn't change because being LGBT was a trend or that society was too stupid. The meaning changed because we have learned a lot more about how being LGBT was actually like. Society didn't become accepting of these people for no reason, they became accepting because we know that they aren't hurting anyone or themselves and that being LGBT wasn't a choice. There is so much more, but I never found them on this subreddit, so I'm gonna ignore them. Simply put, Trans people are people like the rest of us, the only difference being they have a trait that they can't control. All of these points also apply to the Non-Binary, and our Gender-Fluid folks as well. It applies to any identity. Well, thanks for coming to my TedTalk. Trans people are people too. Hopefully, many people see this as possible.
I (25, AFAB) have been watching lots of YouTube videos by trans people and their families. And they always say “I knew since I was a child”, “she always knew she was a girl”. I grew up really religious, and didn’t even know transgender people existed till I got to college. I definitely never knew that it was an option to not be a girl. Lately I’ve realised I’m not cis. I thought I might be non binary or genderfluid. But the more I think about it I feel like I might be a trans guy. I have a lot of dysphoria, but I think I’ve always just tried to ignore it. I’ve definitely had the thought that I was a guy come into my head several times in the last few years and I just didn’t let myself think about it. I kept telling myself that it id known that being transgender was an option when I was a kid I would have identified as a guy. 100%. So I told myself maybe it was just a good thing I didn’t know... which i know is transphobic. When I look in the mirror or see photos of myself I don’t recognise myself. It’s like looking at another person. Ive hated my breasts for as long as I can remember. I’ve always been really uncomfortable around my periods and have been taking pills to stop them completely since I was a teenager. The thought of being pregnant has always made me feel awful. I’ve never been able to picture myself in any sort of future. And I’m sure that if I woke up as a guy tomorrow id be happier... but I can’t see myself actually transitioning. I’m too feminine, I don’t think it would work. And all that being said, when I was a kid I wasn’t telling my parents (I don’t think) that I was a boy. I didn’t think that as a teenager, I just thought everyone was uncomfortable like I was. Every transgender person I’ve heard says they’ve always known, usually since they were like 5... Does that mean I’m not trans and I’m just making this all up? Maybe I’ve just had too much time to think. I’m really doubting myself and idk what to do. I feel like this is something I would have known a long time ago. Sorry I didn’t meant to write so much I’ve just had all this going around and around in my head and I don’t have anyone to talk to. If anyone actually read all this, thank you.
(Note: I had posted this in AskFeminists and I got a lot of good responses. I’m still bothered by this issue but I realize it’s going to take time to work through. I’m sure this sub gets many variations of the same question but I’m interested to hear non-binary folks opinions on my issue as well. I’m wondering if my upbringing and traumas play a part into this. I still experience “dysphoria”(?) and would love to get rid of it or at least analyze it to find its source and see if it’s really dysphoria or something else entirely that just looks and feels like dysphoria. Maybe this isn’t the right place to ask but as I said, I wanted to get non-binary opinions. Thanks in advance for the emotional labor.) ——- I’ve been having a hard time dealing with this and I am exhausted. If I don’t explain something coherently please let me know and I will try to do better. Some important background: I was raised in Puerto Rico in an independent fundamental baptist cult, specifically the Bob Jones University kind, so I was not only subjected to horrible teachings about gender roles from toddler age until my junior year of college, I was incredibly isolated from any other kinds of people, ideas, and ways of life. My earliest thoughts on gender started when I was eight and found myself wishing that there was something I could be other than a man or a woman. Something in-between. I think I might have been frustrated, as my little tomboy self usually was, over the unfairness of always having to wear skirts and dresses and having to put up with playing Princesses or Tea Party with my sisters instead of Knights and Dragons like I wanted to. From the wife training classes I was made to take at 13, to always having my physical boundaries disrespected, to being taught that everything bad that happens in the world happens because a woman made a decision for herself, to watching independent women be called Jezebels, to having older men asking my father to “court” me (as a minor) and my parents seeing no issue with it aside from the fact they didn’t want me to “court” anybody regardless of age until halfway through Bible college, to being encouraged by my Bible college professors to adopt anti-feminist ideology, and not to mention the trauma from sexual abuse... It’s no wonder I’ve had issues with my femininity. Once I left Bible college and the cult and started educating myself on feminism, I started to feel much worse about myself. I hated my body. Seeing myself naked and being reminded that I have a “feminine” figure with breasts made me sick. Male attention made me uncomfortable. Seeing women sexualized in any and every context made me mad, despite being attracted to women myself. I still experience these things now but I’ve gotten a little better at stuffing them away. But no matter what I’ve done, the depersonalization and hatred of my body and the agony of being seen as a woman have continued to haunt me. I’ve cut my hair, I started binding and wearing men’s clothes, and for a while I told everyone I was genderfluid. It helped for a little bit but I then realized that my “dysphoria” wasn’t as bad as what real trans people go through and I stopped. There are also things about being a woman that I like now. I love having breasts in a sexual context, I love being feminine in the bedroom, I learned to love wearing dresses and makeup, and I really want to be a wife and mom someday. I feel like I couldn’t have these things if I was trans. Maybe that’s internalized transphobia, maybe not. I don’t know, and I don’t really care. Being trans isn’t an option for me. With the way that trans people are treated in our society, specifically non-binary trans people who choose not to undergo HRT or gender affirmation surgery, why would I make my life harder than it has to be? But the feelings I’ve named “dysphoria” for so long still haven’t gone away. Women being sexualized or sexualizing themselves still makes me uncomfortable. Being referred to as a woman still seems fundamentally wrong to me. I still hate my body for the most part. I’ve never felt I belonged in groups of women and I don’t have any friends who are cis women. I can’t tell if these feelings are because I may still subconsciously believe that to be a woman is bad, or if I’m simply not a woman at all. And I don’t know how to find that out. I’m just tired of feeling this way. Has anyone else experienced this? Is this even gender dysphoria? How do I become comfortable in my womanhood? Thanks for reading this. Even if there’s no solid solution, it’s a relief to just vent and get this out here and see people’s responses to it. TL;DR: I was raised with toxic gender roles and suffered sexual abuse, now I have what appears to be gender dysphoria but might just be internalized sexism. Which is it? How do I get rid of it?
Currently rolling out on both the App Store and the Play Store
Big update is starting to rollout today! Lots of minor and major changes throughout LunaSea which justifies the major version bump to v3. Some of these changes include:
A new "expandable" tile for releases and episodes throughout the app. This allows for much quicker viewing of full titles, and for Radarr the ability to see custom tags, and within Sonarr the ability to see episode overview. A preview was shown earlier here.
Lots of more sorting options! The 3 catalogues for -rr have many more sorting options to align it more with the web UI, and you can now filter, hide (rejected releases), and sort releases in -rr and in search by things like age, weight, seeders, etc.
You can now set the initial monitoring state in Sonarr when adding a new series. This includes things like future, missing, etc.
You can now set the "default page" for each service, so if you want to enter Sonarr right to the upcoming page instead of the catalogue, this can now be set in the settings.
The UI has been tweaked to give it a more "rounder" look. This should make it align more with iOS design standards.
A full list of changes are below:
NEW - [Search] Releases are now shown as an expandable tile - [Search/Category Results] Ability to sort and filter results - [Search/Search Results] Ability to sort search results - [-rCatalogue] Many additional sorting options - [-rReleases] Releases are now shown as an expandable tile - [-rReleases] Ability to sort, hide, and filter releases - [SonarAdd] Ability to set initial episode monitoring state - [SonarEpisodes] Episodes are now shown as an expandable tile - [RadarReleases] Shows custom format tags - [Clients] FAB icon animates between queue state - [Images] Ability to clear network image cache - [UI/AMOLED Theme] Optional setting to add subtle border TWEAKS - [Changelog] Removed integrated changelog, redirects to documentation changelog - [-rr] Use the term "Interactive" instead of "Manual" for search - [-rLinks] Normalize size of images - [SonarUpcoming] Now shows dates in-line as a styled header - [SonarSeason View] Now shows season number in-line as a styled header - [UI/Font] Adjusted font size across entire application - [UI/Dropdowns] Change dropdowns to popup menus - [UI] Rounder radius around tiles, popups, etc. FIXES - [Home/Calendar] Row height is now statically set to prevent huge calendar on larger displays - [SonarSeasons] Fixed crash related to seasons with no statistics data for percentage of season completion - [SonarEpisodes] Episode numbers greater than 100 could cause a line-break - [SonarEpisodes] Fixed/safe-guarded layout crash on incomplete episode data received - [SonarQueue] Safe-guarded Sonarr queue results when results are null - [Snackbar] Snackbar wouldn't adopt AMOLED styling when enabled - [State] Fixed crashes caused by setting the state of an unmounted widget
Just a quick note for users who do not get releases from the two storefronts but opt to install the binaries manually, LunaSea now uses Codemagic for automated CI builds. A side effect fo this is that APKs are now bundled together as one which means a larger APK size, and that IPA compression is now done by Apple/at install time. The installation size of LunaSea will remain the same, but the APK is now roughly 3x and the IPA is roughly a whopping 8x bigger. A positive effect of this is that any TestFlight builds will now be done through Codemagic, and you can grab the artifacts for these from the banner link on the GitHub. I will not be doing "nightly" builds, Codemagic will only be used for beta/TestFlight deployable builds and production builds. --- There's still lots to come for LunaSea to make the already implemented modules better! I know a lot of users are anxious to get some new modules added such as Tautulli, and they will come in due time :)
i thought i was a trans man but i think i could be a lesbian
hi... i’m new here but i need advice, desperately. a little about me: when i hit puberty i seriously struggled to be a girl and to conform to femininity. i started questioning my sexuality/gender and thought i was pan with a preference for guys. i also started identifying as nonbinary but it was more about me making it easier for cis ppl to gender me w/o me fully understanding what that implied.. a year later i begin to identify as gay, then bisexual binary trans man with still a preference for guys for about 3 years last year i started physically transitioning (i’m now 1.5 years on t) and a few months after transitioning i began to struggle as i tried conforming to masculinity or other men in the same way i struggled trying to conform to femininity or other women. i also do not want to be associated with any and all men (straight or gay or trans or cis or men of color). and that’s when i realized i am in fact nonbinary — not a man or a woman, my being nonbinary is an implicit rejection of patriarchy and the gender binary. everyone’s hrt process is different, and some ppl say it changes ur sexuality and it could have for me... i started feeling guilty cuz i became very attracted to women. which is weird since before i would always say i had a preference for men. but now i don’t like men at all.. i can’t stand men and i don’t find them attractive anymore. i thought it could be my sex drive and my hormones but it’s.... not? since i was 10 years old i used to say that i didn’t believe in marriage and that i never wanted to marry anyone. but the other day when i was texting my friend, the second i typed out the words “i could be a lesbian” the possible future suddenly flashed in my head.. a future of me getting married... and it was to a woman. i burst into tears because for the first time in my life i realized that i actually want to get married... also i’ve always looked up to and admired lesbians and my friends and role models are lesbians and the people i wish i looked like are lesbians and nonbinary (ari fitz being my inspiration). i’ve never directly confronted my attraction to women like i’ve always just pushed it to the side.. but now i’m rethinking everything.. like... did i even like men then, seriously? why were all my male crushes celebrities or popular jocks in my high school that i never talked to? like.. ok maybe i liked them but i know i didn’t want to actually be with them.. and since then all the men i’ve known have disappointed or hurt me so is this a result of trauma? was this a sudden change or something buried deep inside me? is it right for me to say that i’ve never liked men when i’m not exactly sure if that’s true? does it make me any less v*lid? and then if i do accept the fact that i don’t like men anymore / don’t want to be with men.. how do i label my sexuality? i’m not straight cuz that would mean i am a man.. but am i a lesbian? i have several friends who are nonbinary lesbians but it’s hard for me to put that label on myself. this carrd says that “a nonbinary person who is woman aligned or not aligned and is attracted exclusively to women and non man aligned nonbinary people can identify as a lesbian.” so then how does that work for my dating pool... how will THEY see me and what does that mean about THEIR sexuality? i feel like i’m taking up lesbian spaces.. like on tinder they allow a nonbinary option but u are still categorized into man or woman.. what if there’s another lesbian who’s not attracted to nonbinary people and only to women and they think that i’m a creep.. i don’t want the women around me to feel threatened by my presence if i enter a lesbian safe space, since i don’t plan on stopping my transition and whether i want them to or not people will likely read me as a man and misgender me that way.. also i might have a mustache occasionally. like i’ve heard of previously identified as lesbians who realized they were actually trans men but not the other way around so i’m just feeling completely lost... this is SO long i’m so sorry 😭 but does anyone have... any advice.... i don’t know what i’m looking for.. am i just dealing with internalized lesbophobia or am i just not a lesbian... if i’m not a lesbian then what am i if anyone reads thru all this i’ll be impressed
Disclosing trans status on college applications? (TL;DR at the end)
Hey! I'm applying to colleges this summer and filling out application stuff now to be as prepared as I can be (I graduated last year, so I have no reason to wait) and I was hoping for some advice. Some possibly important stuff: I pass fairly well, I'm a year on T now and by the time I start (Fall 2021) I'll be just over 2 years on T, and post-top. I'm not exactly stealth and don't intend to be completely, but my transness is only something I want people very close to me to know. My name is legally changed and my ID and passport all reflect that as well as say male. The schools I'm applying to vary in prestige but there are two Ivy League schools in the mix as well as several with <20% acceptance. They're mostly located in New England though there's one in the Deep South. The general application just has you choose male or female, easy enough for me (I'm not actually binary but this is irrelevant). My issue is that certain colleges will optionally allow you to elaborate on your gender, offering more options like agender, genderfluid, trans man, trans woman, etc. This isn't a required field and you can also just choose "Man" or "Woman" here. I'm unsure if I want to disclose my trans status or not, and I was wondering if anyone has any advice or experience with this. It could be good for hardship story reasons, but (and I'm going to be vague to protect some of my identity) I already have plenty of compelling struggle in my personal essay, think like, surviving cancer levels of hardship. From some precursory research, some admissions staff recommend them because it helps them look at your academic history with the struggles of being a trans teenager in mind, and because these schools value diversity. This in mind, I'm not too keen on the idea of living with only cis men and would be interested in a trans/nb dorm mate or at least to be in a coed dorm or in an LGBT centered house/living community, and disclosing my trans status could help with that. It could also help me get access to more private bathrooms/showers for gyms if that comes up, which could be important. However, I'm extremely paranoid that disclosing my trans status could make the first person evaluating my application discredit me completely. I know that often colleges, especially the ones I'm applying to, are fairly pro-LGBT and trans friendly, but I am excessively worried that the first person assessing my application that will then have to argue for me to be admitted won't be trans friendly and will feel compelled to not vouch for me as a result. I would hate to get rejected from, like, Harvard (I am not applying to Harvard) just because the person dealing with my application wasn't cool. I know there are a ton of you on here that are in college and at various stages of transition so I was hoping someone would have advice. Thank you! TL;DR: Applying to colleges this summer, fairly along in transition but not comfortable living solely with cis men and worried that disclosing my trans status would hurt my application, looking for advice/anecdotes.
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