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Monday, March 22, 2010

Matt and Dr. Metzger

Every 6 months or so we see our hero, Dr. Metzger - Anneke's pediatric endocrinologist at BC Children's Hospital. At every visit he asks Anneke which pronoun s/he would like to be referred to as and which name s/he is going by these days. To date, is has been 'she' and Anneke. Recently, however, while A. was searching for Cannucks tickets on Craigslist, s/he was using the male name s/he likes - Matt. When Ben came home from work, s/he told him "Someone might phone for Matt, that's me." Without skipping a beat, he said, I know. Good answer. We now use the name Matt occasionally when we are out. Molly is routinely referring to A. as her brother in public spaces. A. insists it is simply to save others from the confusion and embarassement of mixing up and/or figuring out her gender. I'm not sure its as simple as that.

Every time we see Dr. Metzger s/he also goes for blood tests to ensure her hormone levels are stable ie: the blockers are working. When I asked if there is anything special s/he wanted to talk to Dr. M about this time, s/he said without hesitation - I want to ask him about 'T' - this is trans-speak for testosterone.
"Does that mean you want to talk to him about transtioning to male?" I asked.
"No, I want to still be a girl, I just want to start 'T'.
Anneke dreams of having muscles, height and a deeper voice. S/he is (for the moment) quite content to have these things and still be considered female.
I have learned that even many in the trans community don't quite understand this. Different thoughts flood through my head - what about gym class in high school, what about your reproductive organs? What about how male you will look?
The thing that strikes me however is how comfortable and confident A. is with this idea. This is truly the expression of her gender-fluidity. "Why do I have to decide?" s/he often says. "Why can't I just be the person I want to be?"

Why indeed.


  1. oh, i love this post.

    "i still want to be a girl, i just want to start T."

    here's to freedom! here's to really redefining gender and gender roles and gender stereotypes!

    i've always thought that i was a cis-gendered woman because i never felt like gender was a limiting thing for me - i've been allowed to incorporate any "masculine" trait or behaviour i wanted, and still be a girl. given that i've also always been happy with my body, it translates into a well-adjusted fit. however, i like to think that if i weren't happy with it, i'd be allowed to pick and choose to what degree i wanted to change, and have supportive loving people around me.

    this makes me want to cry tears of happy!!!

    aimée (aka zuzu petals, aka attack_womb)

  2. Keep strong. A is so lucky to have someone like you to guide "her" through these decisions and let "her" make these decisions.

    I'm 23 and only now getting out from underneath severe oppression and trying to make up for lost time. I am gender fluid and identify as having 3 genders: male, female, and neutral. I can identify with A wanting a mixed body.

    I've been reading your blog for a few months now and enjoy it. I have my own blog at feel free to check it out!

  3. A is so lucky to have you in her life! The fact that you are there to support her and let her make her own decisions is amazing!

    I'm 23 and just coming out from under severe repression for being "genderqueer". I identify as fluid gender and have three genders: a male, female, and neutral gender. I totally understand how A feels about wanting a mixed body!

    I have been reading your blog for a few months now. I have a blog at feel free to check it out!