What qualifies a woman?

baby girl me. looking like a boy.
baby girl me. looking like a boy.

Before I had even finished gulping my coffee this morning I clicked a link making the rounds on good old Facebook that was rage inducing. I was prepared to be rage filled by the comment my friend had added to it when she shared the link:

I guess since I can’t have kids, I am not a real woman. 

OUCH.

Of course the piece was a half cocked (yes, I said it) rant about how Caitlyn Jenner is really just a freak and while he (her word) can empathize with women, she can never identify as a woman. Because the author of the piece is super qualified with all sorts of intricate psychology degrees and is a neuroscientist she feels that she is supremely qualified to, well, qualify what makes a woman.

Wait, no. She has a vagina. THAT’S what makes her qualified to proclaim the qualifications of womanhood. (feel free to drink every time I write any variation of “qualify”) Hey! I also have a vagina and thus am equally qualified! (drink!)

This woman has every right to her opinion…except her opinion helps have a body count of trans teens who kill themselves. It’s a high rate.

And really? What DOES qualify a woman? She lists searing pain every 28 days, but hopping on up and getting shit done, cause that’s what a woman does. Well, what if you DON’T have searing pain? Or what if you have such debilitating pain that you cannot hop up and get shit done?

Hand in your woman card.

Also, Caitlyn can NEVER give birth. So she doesn’t qualify. So, by her standards, are all those who are unable to conceive, carry and deliver a child not women?

Next of course is menopause and hot flashes. At this point my mother needs to have her woman card forcibly taken from her. She didn’t have hot flashes.

Clearly she isn’t a woman.

And the one that struck me the hardest was the description of being stuck on the side of the road, two men stop and you pray they are there with good intentions and not to assault you. Clearly no trans person has ever felt fear like this. Assaults on trans women are at a terrifyingly high level, both by someone they know as well as strangers. If anyone can identify with this, it’s trans women.

What upsets me most about articles like this, that paint in broad condemning strokes is that while the author is right that Miss Jenner has and does enjoy a financially secured, white privilege life and her transition has been under the best of circumstances not all trans kids have these circumstances. Widespread viral articles like these can affirm what may be the deepest fears of some trans kids.

That they aren’t real…anything.  (I am not trans, and I personally don’t think I could every adequately describe their journey or fears.)

None of us, none of us fit into neat tiny little boxes. None of us. I was born a woman, but I don’t fit into all the neat little requirements she lays down. Perhaps you don’t either.

Being a human isn’t like earning a college degree where you have to take all the prerequisites. Being a human is something we just ARE. State of being verb. To be or not to be, that is the question and all that.

We have been commanded to LOVE one another. Above all else, I don’t understand the vitriol this author is hurling but I am trying to send her love. I’m trying send you love. I’m trying to send Caitlyn Jenner love.

We are all just trying to BE.

Every lifetime is a journey.

There are no qualifications for womanhood. If you cannot have a child physically, let me reassure you that doesn’t lessen your womanhood. I am sending you love.

If you are knocked out by menstrual disorders, or have the easiest periods ever…still a woman. Sending you love.

If you are a trans woman, you’re a woman. Sending you love.

 

Let’s all just BE.

Love you all. Happy Monday.

Every comment helps a unicorn.