Suckered by Labels, Again.
I’ve been suckered by labels again. Just when I thought I’d cleaned out the last of them, hubris brings me back to earth.
Labels are sometimes useful shorthand to describe to yourself and others what you generally subscribe to or identify as. The devil is in the details, the myriad of nuances within the gross definition that you may or may not agree with and would take days to explain to someone. Quite often it’s simpler to grit the teeth and say “I’m broadly xxx” and leave it at that.
A recent post by furcissy is an excellent exploration of how the label of “sissy” is applied to an inordinately large selection of behaviours, kinks and fetishes, often pejoratively so. We had a good discussion on the mechanisms, good and bad, used to enforce and condition within this label.
I’ve been lucky to avoid most of the negative elements within the sissy label. Partly because I’ve known from early on what would be negative for me. The real luck has been to encounter dommes who have had a determination to use positive reinforcements. Even so, until very recently I still placed myself loosely under that sissy label, albeit with increasing reluctance.
With the growth of melody I’ve largely extricated myself from that label and much happier having done so. Now I find that I’ve been subject to some very long-standing blurring and misinterpretation between labels and the realisation was a real DOH!! moment. This was partly prompted by looking deeper in to the unsurprisingly clear realisation that I am transgendered; see Gender Fluid Identity.
When I first accessed the Internet over 25 years ago I was able to research my gender questions and come to a conclusion I could live with. I was happy to consider myself as having feminine leanings expressed by being an occasional TV/CD.
In light of more recent events a good question is why didn’t I consider myself to be transgendered back then ? The answer is mostly the conflation of transgendered and transsexual, which was prevalent back then, especially with the use of trans as shorthand to include both. A basic assumption back then was that someone who was transgendered would automatically become transsexual.
The personal stories I read back then as part of the research were almost entirely from transsexuals – and they were heart breaking !! The most common characteristic was the obsession and commitment to reach their goals of transition. No setback, no amount of horror and angst, no matter how harsh was going to deviate them from their single minded purpose.
I knew I didn’t have that obsession and that meant, with some relief at the time, that I wasn’t trans. Definitely the conflation of transgendered and transsexual kept me away from re-examining this for the longest time.
Although I spent a long time being happy with my personal definition and the reasons for it, perceptions shift, creating new questions and fresh insights.
The new found strength of the melody ego is aided by hypnosis, yet hypnosis can’t create what’s not intrinsically there. So I’ve had to go a long way back.
I’d been told by several dommes, going back 20 years that they considered me to be female. To a degree you can shrug that off when you only know them online, anyone can be anything behind a keyboard.
In the real world I was owned for a long time. She often said that she viewed me as female. I rather laughed that off, just considering it to be an extension of the aura I transmitted online.
When you’re no longer owned and there’s been the passage of time you can talk about and question things that you never could at the time. Very recently I had the opportunity to probe her on this. She was quite vehement that she knew I was genuinely female some 15 years ago. With that sort of emphatic answer perceptions have to change.
In essence, if I am transgendered now, I was transgendered all the way back then and undoubtedly long before that, too. Frightened of the confusion between the labels, I stuck the wrong label on myself even though it felt mostly right for so long.
All this navel gazing is not to wonder about lost opportunities, or what might have been if I’d not been frightened by the misleading conjunction between transgendered and transsexual. It’s to celebrate the clearing out of misconceptions and misplaced labels. To be able to fully embrace who I am.
I’ve always been wary of labels and yet I seem to have been caught up in these labels for a long time. Shedding labels is liberating, just as it was when shedding the somewhat pejorative label of sissy. I know that sounds odd. I talk of shedding labels and at the same time say that I’m happy with the transgendered label. That’s for your benefit, dear reader. It’s a label you can pin on me without me spending days saying “yeah, but … “. I have far fewer qualifications about it than any other label you’ve pinned on me up to now.
November 12, 2018 @ 6:00 pm
I do understand I am not really happy with labels but I can see when they may prove helpful during a person life – I am dyslexic but hardly ever use that label – but I have used it when trying to explain to others why i sometimes have trouble spelling and pronouncing words – the label helps me then 😉
November 12, 2018 @ 6:11 pm
May, thanks for reading and commenting.
Labels are a convenience that the world wants to pin on you. The human instinct to belong is very strong and loves a label to identify with. What I have been lucky with is that the label didn’t cause me damage. I’ve seen a lot of people damaged by that particular label.
Yes, there are good labels – I know you don’t let them define you.