Thursday, 4 March 2010

Confusion Reigns

Yesterday's voting for the local elections went pretty much as before, I gave my voting card and ID card, the man behind the table compared them, said 'This isn't right... it says 'sir'.', I responded by saying that it is a long story, and I was allowed to vote. I also added that next Friday they'd be able to read all about it in 'De Telegraaf'. I didn't get any further responses, but I guess that most people just aren't that comfortable talking about it.

Talking about which, I just got the newsletter in my email inbox from Vrouw, the part of the De Telegraaf newspaper I'll appear in. The cover shows a small picture of me, with next to it the text 'Am I a man or woman?' with above it 'Even the doctors don't know'. Tomorrow it'll be available everywhere in the Netherlands and I'll finally be able to see what the results of it will be.

Related, I began work on an educational short video yesterday, aimed at educating people on the basics of intersexuality and the issues those affected encounter. I hope to enlist the help of some people at in making it a nice, polished video :)

Yesterday was quite a tough day for me. I didn't feel very happy during the day, even cried a bit while preparing dinner. It felt as though I was ready to give up on everything 'normal'. The feeling that since I'm not 'normal', I don't belong in this world, and I should stop trying to pretend I'm a part of it. During the night I collapsed emotionally before I could manage to fall asleep and spent nearly an hour crying and such. Today I feel more balanced, as though this alternate personality which made itself known yesterday is sleeping again. Such episodes remain scary nonetheless.

A short while ago I exchanged a few messages another person who claimed to be intersexual. This person said to want to undergo surgery to become 'fully female', yet didn't want to inform her family about what was going on. I think the former comes forth out of the latter. All I hear from other intersexuals is that they are ashamed of what they are, and wish to hide it from others. I think this is something really terrible and wrong.

We intersexuals shouldn't be ashamed of what we are, we should be able to face it, come out for it and nobody should consider it 'weird' or even attack us because we're 'different'. I have heard so many stories from others about the way homosexual people were treated in the 50s, with their existence basically denied and suppressed, they themselves forced to pretend they were good little heterosexuals.

Today we got intersexuals forced to become male or female, whether they want it or not, whether they are capable of realizing what is going on yet or not. Newborn children have their life ruined before it has even started because their parents insist this ambiguity is removed and replaced with the single gender they most desire.

There is no understanding, no awareness, no sympathy. Society as a whole doesn't acknowledge that we even exist. For the 'normals' this is okay, as they can just pretend there's nothing wrong, and if they get an intersexual child, they can just 'modify' it and go on pretending nothing is wrong. For us intersexuals it means we are forced into an impossible situation, where nothing feels right, where we feel forlorn in a world which seems completely alien to us.

To change this, intersexuals should be given rights and acknowledged in law and medically, just like homosexuals were given these rights before, and many other groups before them. We intersexuals should have the right to know everything there is to know about our own bodies, we should be able to take on the identity and gender we feel most comfortable with, even if it means choosing between male and female. I have no trouble distinguishing between 'male intersexuals' and 'female intersexuals', as I would count myself among the latter group considering my body and the role I'm most comfortable with. I can however never pretend to be 'just a female'. I am what and who I am, even if I do not know yet all the facts, I do know what I am not, and I will fight against having anything forced upon me.

Finally, just a last wish that tomorrow's publication will actually get something done and that it may lead to a lot more media attention.



{B} said...

I wish you luck Maya, i'll be thinking of you! I hope this turns out for the best. :)

Maya Posch said...

Thank you! :)

I'm not sure when I'll get my copy of the magazine, but I will scan/translate it when I do. I think it'll be next week or so.

uch2u said...

Hallo Maya,

Ik las je artikel in Vrouw en wilde reageren.
Ik vind je een open en dapper persoon.
Je bent een prachtig mens.

Maya Posch said...

Dank je wel, uch2u :)