I love Redefining Realness selfies. This one was taken after my Pride Week keynote and book signing at Virginia Tech. Thanks to the organizers, especially LGBTA and QPOC, for hosting me!

I love Redefining Realness selfies. This one was taken after my Pride Week keynote and book signing at Virginia Tech. Thanks to the organizers, especially LGBTA and QPOC, for hosting me!

redefiningrealness:

Hello, I’m Ludovic - Ludo for short. I’m a trans guy from Sussex via South Wales, UK. 
I love music, dismantling patriarchy at every opportunity, vegan mac n’ cheese, snuggling with my feline pal Branwell, being a super dapper gentleman, and an elegant slob. Putting people into categories or neat and simple boxes has never sat comfortably with me, so of course the gender binary was always going to make me feel uneasy. But, despite past negativity and constant gender misreadings by others, I refuse to feel trapped! Now that I am fully embracing my trans identity in my 30’s and my attitude is a combination of both bemusement and wonder, I experience this physical, spiritual and emotional process of transition. 
“So you want to be a man then?” Even coming from the most well-meaning person, this question makes me pause, frozen momentarily with an imaginary finger hovering over the male or female button, quiz show style. I don’t want to become a man. To say that would be to imply that I had “never” been male to begin with, which, of course, is untrue. What I want is to feel my body materialized in the world, in a way that represents something of my true nature. 
Something that I am learning as I negotiate this space is that, for me, this isn’t so much a transition, in the transformative becoming “something else” sense, as it is a process of reorientation, a becoming more oneself. This, I would say, is applicable whether or not you are considering medical interventions as a part of your transition. Feeling at home within one’s own temporary shell, a rediscovery of the boy who went into hiding some years ago. He’s peeking out and beckoning to me. He’s smiling.

Ludo’s story really moved me. Share yours with my storysharing campaign, I AM #REDEFININGREALNESS! 

redefiningrealness:

Hello, I’m Ludovic - Ludo for short. I’m a trans guy from Sussex via South Wales, UK.

I love music, dismantling patriarchy at every opportunity, vegan mac n’ cheese, snuggling with my feline pal Branwell, being a super dapper gentleman, and an elegant slob. Putting people into categories or neat and simple boxes has never sat comfortably with me, so of course the gender binary was always going to make me feel uneasy. But, despite past negativity and constant gender misreadings by others, I refuse to feel trapped! Now that I am fully embracing my trans identity in my 30’s and my attitude is a combination of both bemusement and wonder, I experience this physical, spiritual and emotional process of transition.

“So you want to be a man then?” Even coming from the most well-meaning person, this question makes me pause, frozen momentarily with an imaginary finger hovering over the male or female button, quiz show style. I don’t want to become a man. To say that would be to imply that I had “never” been male to begin with, which, of course, is untrue. What I want is to feel my body materialized in the world, in a way that represents something of my true nature.

Something that I am learning as I negotiate this space is that, for me, this isn’t so much a transition, in the transformative becoming “something else” sense, as it is a process of reorientation, a becoming more oneself. This, I would say, is applicable whether or not you are considering medical interventions as a part of your transition. Feeling at home within one’s own temporary shell, a rediscovery of the boy who went into hiding some years ago. He’s peeking out and beckoning to me. He’s smiling.

Ludo’s story really moved me. Share yours with my storysharing campaignI AM #REDEFININGREALNESS

Read this Village Voice cover story this morning and got my life + became a fan. Specifically here:
"Quattlebaum says he hates … the field of queer studies along with it. ‘I have a lot of problems with the academic queer community because it’s a community that exists completely removed from reality,’ he says. ‘Those kids who are selling their bodies on the West Side Highway, on Christopher Street, they don’t even know what the fuck queer theory is.’”
Hence our need to be rooted in grassroots, in the streets, in solidarity with those who are “marginalized.” I’m done with folks and organizations speaking our names and bodies in theory, in death, in stats. Yet ignoring the same folks they discuss in theory without ever knowing us, without ever trying to engage, without ever “outreaching,” without ever lending the stage and resources to us. 
As a trans woman of color - no matter what space I enter - I have one stilletoed foot on the street. Always.

Read this Village Voice cover story this morning and got my life + became a fan. Specifically here:

"Quattlebaum says he hates … the field of queer studies along with it. ‘I have a lot of problems with the academic queer community because it’s a community that exists completely removed from reality,’ he says. ‘Those kids who are selling their bodies on the West Side Highway, on Christopher Street, they don’t even know what the fuck queer theory is.’”

Hence our need to be rooted in grassroots, in the streets, in solidarity with those who are “marginalized.” I’m done with folks and organizations speaking our names and bodies in theory, in death, in stats. Yet ignoring the same folks they discuss in theory without ever knowing us, without ever trying to engage, without ever “outreaching,” without ever lending the stage and resources to us. 

As a trans woman of color - no matter what space I enter - I have one stilletoed foot on the street. Always.

Dear NYTimes: LGTBQIA People of Color Have Style + Brains + Identities Too

I’m tired of being erased from history, pretending that trans women and people of brown/black/red/yellow/etc skins do not matter, don’t have brains and stories and substance and identities and loves and lives that should be elevated. 

This erasure is violent and dangerous and needs to change. We as a LGBTQIA community can not let this just go on. We can’t take crumbs and say, “Well they covered us, right? Look they have Santiago Cortes in the piece + he mentions a drag queen in his Ivy League essays!” No, we must say:

"Cover us in all our glorious intersections and diversities or LEAVE US ALONE. We’ll tell our own stories."

Taking the stage at the GLAAD Media Awards in New York.

1500 people in the audience, two trans sisters in solidarity on stage. This was the moment that validated all the good and bad decisions I made in my short life. Laverne Cox is a woman I’m proud to call a friend and sister.

Three LGBT people appeared together on a mainstream media cable channel talking news, politics, and common sense, and television sets across the country didn’t explode!
Chaz’s experience with his body is not inherently wrong for not being the same as my experience. When advocates of our community teach about trans* folks as if we all take part in this singular narrative, however, we set up a dichotomy within our own community: those who are trans* enough for following this narrative and those who are not for being different.