"The unexamined life is not worth living" Socrates

- - scatterings of ideas sent to my younger self, a sensitive girl who was fooled into believing she was a boy because of anatomy - -

Sunday 13 March 2011

Choices, Choices

Many years back a friend showed me a really good way to use the flip of a coin to help decide which of two options to choose.
Let's call them option A and B for convenience. What you do is assign heads to one option and tails to the other. It does not matter at this point which is which.
Now, flip the coin and note which option has been "chosen" by the coin toss. Let's say for this example that the coin toss has selected option B.  Note your immediate feelings on the result. If you are unhappy about it, you know that option B is not for you, so choose A. If you feel happy about the coin's choice, then B is the good one and away you go.

This morning I was thinking about (what else) my gender confusion. From the amount of time my mind devotes to this, you would think one or the other side was obviously in charge, but I have not been as certain as this morning's test revealed to me.

This morning, I invented a 'thought experiment' to see who is in charge upstairs. Recently in some blogs I follow there has been discussion about sexuality and transition. Over the past year I have become convinced that sexual orientation is malleable. I have become certain that in my case, my female self would in fact want a male to complete her. Ariel sized this up as an orientation toward "the other". As a male, I want the other (female) to complete me, so after transition I would therefore still want "the other".

About my thought experiment: I found a quiet place to meditate on the following. I imagined that two of me were in the room. There was my current male presentation and a clone of me identical in all respects but female in body. In the experiment, these two were allowed to 'get to know each other' if you get my drift. I tried to imagine all of the details from both points of view. It didn't take me long to find my truth. If you would like to do this for yourself, here are the rest of the instructions:

If one of the two is clearly a winner, you are done with the process. If you are having trouble acknowledging the preference, time for the coin toss. Assigning male to be heads (language is wonderful isn't it) and yes, female got 'tails', flip your mental coin and let it land and examined your emotional content carefully.

I invite you all to find a quiet place of your own now.




  1. "Recently in some blogs I follow there has been discussion about sexuality and transition."

    I'm pretty sure that you're referencing my latest post at http://autogyn.blogspot.com.

    What happens when you feel perplexed by either side landing the coin toss? I'm going to ask you the same question I've asked others:

    If everything you know and love were to be destroyed in an earthquake tomorrow, would you pass up an opportunity to live as a girl if the possibility presented itself? -As an attractive, naturally biological woman?

    You don't have to answer, but at least ask yourself this: In determining your gender identity, is it actually the good things about your masculinity that keep you from living as a woman, or is it the feeling that actually becoming a woman isn't reasonable or realistic?

    Looking forward to hearing your thoughts.


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  3. @Renee: Your post and Ariel's


    and Teagan's too


    have all been interesting.

    Your "question" is a more complicated and less visceral way of determining gender identity IMHO. In my case, with apologies to Caroline and such encouraging news on how removing Mr. T from our lives helps reverse the ravages, I cannot manage to convince myself that I might ever be a 'girl'. Having said that, even at my age, I can convince myself that good sex is still a possibility in either gender expression.

    As far as good things about masculinity, I can say that I am good at emulating a man, even better if I retrieve some of my old façade-boosting men I used to carry around. Having said that, becoming a woman is realistic and reasonable, even if I could never be some stereotype of womanhood. I would not be or have been a stereotypical woman anyway, of that I am sure.

  4. @Halle: Is being less visceral a good or bad thing?

    "I cannot manage to convince myself that I might ever be a 'girl.'"

    I just came back from the supermarket. I stopped by the magazine rack to peruse the latest tech periodicals. Of course, the women's magazines all caught my eye: "Lose 20lbs by Summer!;" "Things he likes to hear in bed;" "Summer Fashion 2011," etc. It reminded me of how concerned a lot of women can be with their image- trying so hard to look like the celebraties on the covers or behave in a certain way.

    Anyway, it seems that normal women are struggling to keep up with societal expectations of what it means to be a 'girl'. How much you want to bet that most of them think that there is room for improvement?

    You know what would be a huge improvement for many women?

    Not looking like men.

  5. For decisions like this, I go with visceral, Halle. :)

    Really, it was my gut that told me that I had to transition, that I would not be happy without it. I was scared, because my pretty boy looks were gone, and I was really afraid that I would look like some women I know who couldn't blend in a million years. But I proceeded anyway, and my cowardly self was rewarded. If I'd listened to my head, I would have chosen something much more "sensible," and I would not have been happy. That was the story of my previous life!

    The coin flip and the thought experiment are both intriguing!

  6. Your experiment took seconds to run.

    _I_ won. :-)


  7. One day I woke up and knew it was time. I had spent 44 years meditating on it.

  8. My wife and I have been using a similar method for years. Ours usually involves choosing fingers behind the back. We don't seem to care until we are are forced on one outcome. It is usually readily apparent if the outcome makes us happy or sad thus making the next step much easier.

  9. aaaah...the luxury of CHOICE.

  10. There's always the option of bigender also.. haha Life is CRAZY