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they take after their cousin

I also wonder how many studies have missed certain unusual individuals who have abnormal reactions to things. When you test a medicine on a couple thousand people and you find no statistically significant benefit, there’s always the chance that the medicine actually works very well on one in a thousand people, because of some unusual genetic trait, and the study had no way of catching that.

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REAL nerds enjoy homework more than Star Trek, Abby

Fortunately, reassignment surgery for this condition is quite simple.

Of course, this is just Abby being silly in her weird way. It isn’t meant to ridicule transsexuals– I think Abby is as accepting of them as I am. Transgressing gender expectations, feeling wrong in one’s physical body, and wanting to be called by different pronouns doesn’t make you a bad person, and doesn’t harm anyone; it’s basic decency to make an effort to treat such people the way they ask to be treated. Besides, being flexible about what pronouns you use is good exercise for your brain’s language centers.

It also isn’t meant to ridicule people who feel like something else trapped in the wrong body (aliens, animals, mythical creatures, etc). I see a lot of bullying aimed at people with that sort of identity, saying that it’s “not real” or whatever. But the fact is, if it feels real to them, then it’s automatically real, because what it is is a feeling, and feelings are real regardless of what causes them. There doesn’t have to be some literal cosmic mix-up between souls for someone to feel genuinely wrong in a human body.

I’ve experienced a lot of these things to some degree. I’m in a female body, but I don’t consider myself mentally female– in fact, I have a hard time seeing how a mind can have a gender at all. Some people say I have a masculine mind, but that just means I have some traits that society associates with males. That doesn’t make them male traits. It just means someone else thinks they are, not me. Separating all the human behaviors into masculine and feminine is kind of an arbitrary categorization. The so-called masculine traits have very little in common with each other, besides generally tending to occur in people with the same sex organs. Same with the feminine traits.

I feel lucky that no one pushes me to act like society’s idea of a woman; I know many others aren’t so lucky, and end up feeling ashamed at having a mind that doesn’t fit what the world expects from someone of their sex.

I’ve felt like a space alien trapped in a human body, too. My one professionally published book is a memoir called “Born on the Wrong Planet.” I’ve been unusually lucky there too; I’ve gotten nothing but good feedback about it. Why do people praise my book, but insult and ridicule others who express similar ideas on Tumblr or someplace?

Maybe because I don’t use words like “therian” or “otherkin,” and instead use my alien-trapped-in-a-human-body description as a way of expressing what it’s like to have Asperger’s Syndrome. Maybe because I don’t describe it in terms of literal souls or spiritual forces. Maybe because I don’t talk about it all the time. Maybe because I don’t get argumentative when someone calls me a human. Maybe because I can laugh about it, as I can laugh about almost everything in life.

Who knows. No matter how far society develops, people will still want someone to make fun of. I’m no exception. But I try to keep my ridicule trained on targets who have done something genuinely harmful to deserve it.

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