Post-Gender by Ryan Cassata
13 years into my transition and trans experience and I don’t think about gender much anymore. I feel like I am past gender, post gender, beyond gender. The only time I spend a lot of time thinking about gender is when I am feeling unsafe. Public Bathrooms. Conservative areas. People making comments…etc. Passing as cis is survival in those moments.
The rest of the time I just exist. I just am.
I am Ryan.
A human. On Earth. Like everybody else.
Living without the constraints of gender stereotypes and roles.
Living without the urge to fit into a box.
I JUST AM.
I am Ryan.
He/Him honors me.
She/her feels foreign.
They/them feels confusing.
Using just my name and no pronouns feels like you’re avoiding my truth.
“Brother” feels like home. “Sister” feels foreign. “Sibling” feels like family.
“Son” feels affirming, “Daughter” feels nostalgic.
Both words, when spoken from my parents lips, just feel like love.
My post-op chest feels natural.
My no-hormone-therapy voice sounds like me.
Most of the time I JUST AM.
When I just am…I am…
Free from the thought of passing as male or masculine.
Free to show all sides of my personal experience.
The feminine, the masculine, the in-between. Whatever you want to call it. Whatever I want to call it.
How about just existing? Being human? Experiencing?
Not everything has to be gendered.
Free to be myself and express myself the way that I want to.
Free to just exist and not have to subscribe to labels and stereotypes.
Free to just be Ryan.
Free to just BE.
I am living, having a #trans experience, experiencing being a trans human, experiencing all the stuff in society that comes along with being trans and living/expressing authentically.
But…when I can just be RYAN…and just exist without the worry of strangers reacting to my appearance…
My gender identity, expression, and appearance, no longer weighs heavy on my mind.
I don’t think about it much. And I just exist.
My experience relating to gender is not a burden. It just is. Like I just am.
I am Ryan. He/Him.
I am Post-Gender.
Wikipedia says “Post–punk is a broad genre of rock music which emerged… as artists departed from the raw simplicity and traditionalism of punk rock”
Now apply it to gender.
“Post-gender is a broad identity or non-identity as humans departed from the raw simplicity and traditionalism of gender identities, stereotypes, and appearances.”
Written by Ryan Cassata: http://www.ryancassata.com