I keep seeing a lot of places using “Nonbinary AND Transgender”.
A screen capture from Consciousness Leaders speaking topics list and Tara Robertson’s (She/Her) post requesting speakers.
Separating nonbinary people from transness feels like confirmation of cis people’s beliefs that even in transness the gender binary must still be upheld. I wrote on my own understanding of this in Trans Enough. I understand to be trans is to not align with the gender assigned to you at birth, which I do not therefore I am trans. When I see “Nonbinary AND Transgender” it feels like saying “well there’s these people and they're not trans but they’re not cis either”. I do know that a lot of people do this to ensure nonbinary people know they are being included but in a roundabout way it feels the opposite.
A lot of cis people believe that to be trans you need to have surgeries done, you need to start HRT, you need to change your body to fit the perception of the new space you belong to. See also passing and not passing.
None of this is true. We are trans whether we pass, whether we undergo surgery, and whether we wish to take part in the binary. We are trans. And even if I chose to partake in any of the aforementioned, I’d still be nonbinary.
I hope that one day we are able to come to better language beyond the binary of cis or trans. I also hope that one day we care less about other people’s genders but for today I just want less confirmation of cis beliefs, more understanding of where I belong and more honesty around who’s understanding we are centering in our words.
What do you think? Thank you for reading through! I try to write here weekly but I write on my Ko-Fi page daily. For more stories like this and insightful conversations, join one of the membership tiers. Learn more about me and my work at the link below.