One thing I have noticed since I have been going out and about in the real world is the amount of looks and gazes I get. At first I was concerned I was being ‘clocked’ or ‘outed’ but more and more I started to realise that this is the kind of attention Genetic Woman have had to put up with all of their lives.
My early realisation was walking into a pub or a bar and noticing that heads were turning my way and glances were for a little longer than I was used to. Maybe it was my blond hair, my outfit or whatever, but I soon realised it wasn’t just because I was transgender presenting as a woman – men do that to all women.
As I spend more and more time getting out and about shopping, restaurants and just walking around I have felt it more and more. What I started to notice is that their eyes don’t just look at my face, they flick to my legs, body, chest (lol) and head. The effect also occurs with other woman as well, although they are probably more interested in my outfit, accessories and shoes. I deliberately watch for this effect and am always ready to meet a glance with my eyes and smile back.
Taking this one stage further, I wanted to see and feel how women are objectified by men and if I could experience this first hand, after all my I may need to be prepared for when my journey takes me down a particular path in the future.
I came across an Internet Chat site, by chance, called ‘Inter-Chat’, it was good enough for my purpose, so I registered, added my profile as completely honest as I could be and some of my favourite photos. I even went through the process of having my profile validated by the ‘site admin’.
Well, unlike having a male profile, I was swarmed with chat requests within minutes, upwards of 20+ and they were almost relentlessly coming in. Most were of the same format – “hi how are you”, to which I generally replied – “I’m good thanks how are you”. This small talk generally carried on for several messages in the next 5-10 minutes (this has largely continued everyday for the past two weeks when I am logged on, whatever time of the day or night).
I would categorise these interactions in three ways; Firstly, those who didn’t read my profile at all and just looked at the pictures. Secondly, those who who did read my profile and didn’t understand the phrase “Transgender Woman” and Thirdly, those who read my profile and fully understood what kind of girl I am. There was a Fourth category no doubt, those who read and passed on by for whatever reason with no interaction.
The majority of the messages were from men from Asia/Middle East. I always made it clear within the first few messages to repeat the key information so I wasn’t trying to deceive anyone about myself. From here >99% of all responses were extremely positive and most didn’t seem to care at all. A few of these questioned the term ‘Transgender’ and whether that meant I had had an ‘Op’ – so I went on to (try to) explain the difference between Transgender and Transexual and the fact I am not currently full time by any means. The remaining <1% just never replied again.
The thing that surprised me the most is that once the initial questions and understanding was out of the way I was then treated in almost the same way by everyone. We progressed in the main to “where are you from”, “what do you do”, “does your husband know you are on here” and usually end up with “do you want to see my privates” or “send me a picture of yourself naked”.
From there it generally jumps straight in to “wanna skype/whatsapp/kik/hangout”, to which I generally responded, “sorry, I prefer to chat here if that is ok”. On occasions I shared my Skype account but made it very clear I wasn’t going to ‘webcam’ but happy to swap some pictures (all of my pictures are clean and not at all rude or lewd) – I have seen some sights though, lol!
My overall impression from this little experiment was one of amazement of how men objectify women, of course I already thought I knew, but had never experienced it first hand. I’ve concluded that most of the male driver is visual; “I look like a woman therefore I am a woman and will be treated as such”. I now have a new level of respect for Genetic Woman that have had to tolerate this from birth. I am exhausted by it, by the shear number of conversations and threads, it is tricky to keep up and remain interested and interesting.
My experiment is nearly over and I plan on deleting my account once my £1.50 worth of credit expires in a few days. Some of the men I have been chatting to are really nice guys, I’ve had some fun, but I have also been made to feel fantastic. Overall I have enjoyed the flirting, chatting and the whole experience. I appreciate it is not everyone’s cup of tea, but I have learnt a lot and it has helped me understand another part of my journey to wherever I am heading.
One of the biggest things for me is I have now “come out as me” to probably 100+ guys, explained who I am and what I’m about. This I will reflect on, as it has caused me countless times to question and express myself and I am more confident and certain that this is me.
I’m having another experiment with KIK at the moment, but that is a subject for another day… 🙂
as always, YMMV!