The PROCESS called trans attraction

tranny chaserThe term “tranny chaser” is often thrown at men who are attracted to transgender women. Usually by the very women the men are attracted to. We talk a lot about stories here at The Transamorous Network. A story is a thought a person repeats to themselves until it becomes a belief. Beliefs are stories a person repeatedly thinks until it becomes “unconscious” – it becomes so familiar to the person, they don’t have to think about thinking about it. It just is.

When a story becomes a belief, it is very powerful. Long before that point, such stories are attracting to themselves physical phenomena – events, people, circumstances – which match the story’s content. Of course, there is evidence disproving, or not matching, the story. But the storyteller cannot see that evidence. The predominantly only see matching evidence. The more the person repeats the story, the more difficult it is to see contrary evidence. That’s why, for example, some transwomen claim they will “never” find a guy, while pointing to the mound of her failed relationships. So long as she continues to believe that story, she continues to have that life experience.

At some point a story, particularly a negative one, has so much momentum behind it, it becomes automatic or knee-jerk. For example, a woman who happens to be trans can have an experience with a guy who definitely is NOT a “tranny chaser” observe some behavior that “triggers” her “tranny chaser” story and, in no time, that story becomes active in her mind. When that happens, the guy becomes a chaser. Even if he really isn’t one.

There are, of course, plenty of transgender women who do not have such stories. So guys, you’re in luck! For those women who do have such stories, there’s little you can do to defend yourself against them. Other than, of course, changing your stories about transgender women so you don’t encounter them.

What’s fascinating about transgender women who do have this story, or any other which demeans the men naturally attracted to them, is the state of hypocrisy involved. This wonderful Medium story by Julia Serano, which I’ll refer to several times in future posts, characterizes the state of being “transgender” as a process. Serano brilliantly describes how a person who is “cis-gender” could at any time become “trans” as soon as that person decides to coincide their appearance with an already existing or emergent internal identity:

…in discussions about trans identities and trajectories, [the words “transgender” and cis-gender”] often give the false impression that “cis” and “trans” are immutable and mutually exclusive categories, when in fact they are not.

For example, there are many people out there who (at this particular moment) would describe themselves as cisgender or cissexual, but who in the future will identify as transgender or transsexual. And (in the case of those who detransition) some people who self-identify as trans today may not in the future.

In fact, when discussing matters of identity and gender transition, people are by default presumed to be “cis” until they say or do something (e.g., voice a trans identity, express gender non-conforming behavior) to denote otherwise. This point is crucial, and I shall be returning to it shortly.

Furthermore, there is no test (medical, psychological, or otherwise) to determine whether or not a person is “really trans.” The terms transgender and transsexual are experiential — individuals have an internal experience of gender that they can either try to repress, or outwardly express via being gender non-conforming, or transitioning to their identified gender, respectively.

The same can be said for a man who exhibits “tranny chaser” behavior. As I said above, first, just because a guy speaks or acts in a way that looks like “chaser” behavior, doesn’t make him a chaser. And even if he consistently behaves that way and therefore may be accurately called such a person, that doesn’t mean he will remain that way. To the degree the observer continues to refer to that person as a “chaser”, it is impossible to see evidence in his behavior that is not  “chaser”-like.

Got it?

Why am I defending men who “tranny chase”? If you think I am, then you’re missing the point.

The point is, your stories determine the reality you experience. That includes how people behave in your life experience. Giving grace to others (men, transwomen….anyone) is a overt act of countering stories which create realities we prefer not to have.

And in giving that grace, not only do you free others to be human BE-ings, which is decidedly a process rather than some fixed state, you free yourself from a limited life experience where only those things you dislike are your reality.

How to stop men from murdering transwomen

Most transwomen are murdered by men

Many victims know their killer.

Many killers engaged with their victim in a romantic or sexual context prior to killing them. Their violence stemmed from shame, surprise, embarrassment and fear…

So doesn’t it seem that the best approach to keeping transwomen safe, isn’t whipping up a bunch of fear about men, it’s approaching the men and having them realize finding transgender women attractive is NORMAL?

So when you shame a man who is interested in you as a “chaser”, believe it or not, you’re contributing to the amount of violence perpetrated on people like you.

Apparently, transgender actor and activist Jen Richards agrees. In a post on her Instagram, here’s what she had to say:

Want to stop trans murders?

Stop shaming men who like us, stop calling them gay when they’re not, stop watching dudes play us on screen.

Yes, it’s actually a deeply complicated and nearly intractable set of issues at the dangerous intersection of race, class, homophobia, misogyny, and economics, but the thing that most people can DO, right now, no matter who or where they are, is really that simple: stop shaming the men who like us, stop letting us be portrayed by men.

After years of thinking on this issue, listening to survivors of assault, reading the reports, talking to countless trans women/sex workers, that’s the heart of this. Straight men kill trans women partners because other people, and culture as a whole, says it’s gay, less masculine, to be with us.

So shut it down. Shut down every person or conversation that claims trans women are “really” men, every media depiction with men playing us.

If y’all have other ideas, I’d love to hear them. I’ve seen endless “stop trans murders” posts but no suggestions as to how, or any accountability.

This is our work at The Transamorous Network (the first part).

But we don’t do that by beating men over the head, trying to get them to stop what they would naturally do – the same thing many would do – when their stories trigger such behavior. Instead, we tell men how they can have everything they want. Then we show them how. It just so happens the “how” also has them change their stories about themselves and about transwomen. Which can over time lead to fewer violent acts.

Does our method work? We don’t have hard, scientific evidence, yet. But anecdotal evidence is mounting. And that’s all we need to stay encouraged.