A wonderful testimony by our new contributor Valentina Beoni.
When I still identified myself as a transsexual man, I often reacted badly to comments on social media and in particular to those of the radical feminists (which I called 'TERF'). I had also quarrelled with Magdalen Berns, gender critical and British youtuber who passed away in 2019, because at her statement "you are not a male" (you are not a male) I I had showered her with insults.
As soon as I decided to stop the transition path I thought I'd go find her and apologise, and after I found out she was deceased I read under her videos comments from trans activists like "one less"or "finally".
I state that despite my decision to 'become' a woman again, I had continued to participate in trans activism groupsthinking that I could somehow contribute or help with my experience as well. But when I came across those comments, I took the drastic decision to stop being a trans activist.I also realised that it wasn't for me and that the my experience of detransitioner was very discredited and I was often insulted. (not within the group I was part of, but mostly by trans people outside, activist or not).
I have always been a very open person, perhaps too open, and even a little naïvely. I always thought there might be a compromise to get everyone on the same page. I remember (always on social networks) trying to convince religious fundamentalists to consider homosexuality normal (and sometimes even succeeding!). Today, however, I realise that getting everyone to agree is not always possible. There are issues on which it is necessary to take a stand and advance one's own idea.
I have therefore stopped being a 'conflict mediator' at all costs.. There was a decision to be made: either liberal feminism or radical feminism. The question I wanted to understand most was about gender and the various questions that arise from it. What is gender identity? Is gender a social construct? Should gender be demolished or should a new one or even more than one be created?
My experience as a woman in detransition made me realise something very basic: sex cannot be changed and to believe you can is a delusion.. At the same time a person, I believe, should be free to undertake the transition if you think that modifying your body will make you feel comfortable. This thought of mine seems to be conflicting, contradictory. Yet there are transgender people who embrace this thought and this makes me feel relieved.
This is how I approached the group Radfem Italy and I got some information about radical feminism. Usually when I make choices of this kind I look at both the idea behind a movement and the various positions on important issues, but not only that: I like to relate to the people who represent this idea. In radical feminism I have found a real community, I have found sisters, women who believe deeply in what they are doing. and they work hard to achieve it, without clinging to simple slogans. I have found genuine, sincere people, who they are not afraid to say what they really think, even at the cost of losing the 'graces' of the mainstream community.
I am happy to have found myself a woman again and, above all, a feminist.
When I "rebecame" a woman. And from transman I ended up a feminist
A splendid testimony from our new collaborator Valentina Beoni
When I still identified as a transexual man, I often reacted badly to comments on social media especially to those of radical feminists (that I called TERF). I had even argued with Magdalena Berns, gender critical and British youtuber that passed in 2019, because at her affirmation "you are not a male "I covered her in insults.
As soon as I had decided to interrupt my transition process, I thought about looking her up to apologise, and after discovering she had passed, I read comments of gender trans activist "one less" or "finally" under her videos.
I state that even though I had decided to "rebecome" a woman, I had continued to participate in trans activist groups, thinking I could in some way contribute or help through my experience. However, when I stumbled upon those comments, I took the drastic decision to stop being a trans activist, furthermore I realised that it was not for me and that my experience as a detransitioner was very discredited and I was often insulted (not within the group I belonged to, but in particular by trans people on the outside, activist and non).
I have always been a very open person, maybe too much so, and a bit naively I always thought there could be a compromise that could get everyone to agree. I remember that (on social media) I had tried to convince religious fundamentalist to consider homosexuality normal (and sometimes I even succeeded). Today though I realise that trying to get everyone to agree is not always possible. There are matters where you must take your stand and move forward with your idea.
So, I stopped being a 'conflict mediator' at any cost. There was to decide: either liberal feminism or radical feminism. The issue that mattered to me the most regarded gender and the various questions born from it. What is gender identity? Is gender a social construct? Should gender be demolished, should a new one be created or even more than one?
My experience as a detranstioning woman made me comprehend a very basic notion: sex cannot be changed and to think it can be is delirious. At the same time a person, I think, should be free to be able to transition if they think that modifying their body can make them feel more comfortable in their own skin. This belief of mine seems to be conflicting, contradictory. However, there are transexual people that share my belief, and this is reassuring to me.
This is why I approached the group Radfem Italia and I gathered some information on radical feminism. Usually when making these kinds of choices I look both at the ideal that is at the base of the movement and at the various positions not only on important thematics: I like to relate to the people who represent this ideal. Within radical feminism I found an actual community, I found a sisterhood, women who strongly believe in what they do and make every effort to achieve it, without resorting to simple slogans. I found some genuine, sincere, people who are not afraid to say what they truly think, even at the cost of losing the "grace" of the mainstream community.
I am glad I rediscovered myself as a woman and especially as a feminist.