Tuesday, 13 December 2011

Once A Freak, Always A Freak

It's already light outside when I open my eyes, gradually waking up from a deep sleep. Barely remembered scenes from dreams flit through my mind as a leaden weariness creeps upon me. Today I'm waiting again for news from my lawyers but likely won't hear anything. Today I'll trying to focus on my work again, even though it's hard to imagine what I'm working for. I find myself thinking of writing a new blog post, partially to help me order my thoughts, partially to hopefully make people realize how hard it is for me to keep going on living.

Of course, I do not wish to be melodramatic, so it has to be phrased in such a manner that it evokes understanding, not revulsion or otherwise scare people away or have them dismiss me as yet another crazy person. I start putting a few different drafts together in my head.

One of the first feelings I experienced right after waking up was one of despair mixed with revulsion, its focus being my body. I still can't handle the knowledge that I essentially do not have any genitals. I have no idea what to do with it, other than realize that it makes me into a freak. Then a common question pops up in my head:

"You do feel like a woman, right?"

So many people have asked me this. So many physicians and psychologists have asked me the same question or variations on it. It's at the very core of my traumas. The only answer I can give to it is that I don't know. I don't know what 'feeling like a woman' means. I only know that being alive with this body has caused me only confusion and pain. Confusion because my body never adhered to the development I saw when others entered puberty. Pain when I realized seven years ago that I was a freak of nature. Pain when it was denied by physicians and psychologists that my body was different from a male's body even though it was so obvious. Pain when it was expected of me to adapt straight into a female role.

I don't know what my role or place in society is. Heck, I don't know what I am. A genital-less, asexual being which exists in a world where there is no place for it. Maybe. After seven years of brainwashing and emotional torture in the Dutch healthcare system I'm not sure what to feel any more. Admitting that I am a sexual being is difficult enough. While I fondly remember some parts of back when I was intimate with others, mostly the closeness and the pleasurable physical and emotional sensations, those memories become insignificant by the dark shadows cast by intense self-loathing, doubts and confusion.

I'm now twenty-eight years old and yet I don't feel like I'm older than ten years when it comes to things like sexuality. I guess I did get stuck there all those years ago. I'm supposed to be an adult - a woman according to most - but I don't feel like it at all. Early in my childhood I lost the feeling of safety and sureness when I got stuck between 'the boys' and 'the girls'. The issues I have when it comes to accepting my body and the confusion I associate with sexuality started a long time ago. On top of those issues came the traumas due to the brainwashing and the rape/sexual assault, magnifying the existing issues many-fold.

I'm lost.

I'm afraid.

Afraid that if I continue living things will become even worse.

Afraid that I'm doing everything wrong, that it's already too late to right things now.

Afraid that when I ask help people will pretend to help me again, or otherwise hurt me.

Lost as every path I have tried seems to take me somewhere unpleasant.

Above all I know, I feel, I realize, I am aware, I am pained, I want to run away from the fact that I am a freak.

Maybe I'm not a freak, but I can not convince myself that I am not. The questions of what I am and what my place in society is are too strong and too fundamental to be shoved aside, or answered with external help.

This morning I did manage to take a shower even though it's still hard to see my own body in a mirror. It's my own small victory. For a brief moment.


1 comment:

Robert said...

Wow Maya...
To read this, to realize what you must go through you when you write this, to be unable to really understand what you must be going through...

First of all, and I believe I’ve written it on G+ earlier, I’d like to say that it takes real, real courage to be as open as you are, regarding your emotions, frustrations, your sexuality and all the other stuff you tell us about. You’ve got my utmost respect for doing this. Really!
So, if you think you’re a freak... Let me assure you that there are many, many, many people who are the real freaks, and the sad part is that they don’t even have a clue about it.
You think, you feel, you write about it eloquently, you’re not afraid of being who you are. That alone makes you a special human being, a woman who is strong enough to face her deepest anger, frustrations, to acknowledge her weaknesses.

You say you’re 28 years old now. Going back in time, thinking of myself at that age, I was a young man, or better: a boy, who was completely and utterly clueless (though I didn’t think so myself back then) and never even thought of the things you are talking about right here.
And that also makes you more of a human being than most 28-year old’s. And more of a woman than girliegirls at that age.

I know there’s nothing I can say that will make you change your mind about feeling a ‘freak’. But it’s plain and simple: You’re not a freak.
It’s society that’s freaky, it’s society that makes life hard to live for people that don’t fit the ‘general mold’.

My 2 cents: You’re a special, fragile, hurt (but not broken), beautiful person, who just wants to live her life and have some fun while doing so. What’s wrong with that, Maya?

Just keep going. Time won’t heal all wounds, but be assured it will be ok more often than you might think (of fear) right now.