I Am Not a Threat

By Lisa P.

You, sir, seem to be very concerned about me using a woman’s restroom, and you, ma’am seem equally worried that I may pose a threat to you in a space that is safe from men. May I ask you both to reflect on the following thoughts from a transgender male-to-female person before you pass final judgment?

Consider what it is like to be someone like me.

Let me begin with you sir. I imagine that your fear is derived from what you, as a male, would think about being in a woman’s restroom. As a male constantly “on the hunt” I am guessing you think that if a person with male genitals were in a women’s restroom, such a person would have to be there to try to find a woman to assault. Someone with those goals, male or female, would definitely be a threat to all women in the women’s room, heterosexual, lesbian and transgender alike. People like that are sexual predators. They are dangerous. Some of them may attack boys, which they would find in the men’s restrooms, by the way. The problem, you see, is that not everyone sexualizes women, girls and young boys and tries to dominate them, as you seem to suppose. IN ANY CASE, BE ASSURED, I AM A TRANSWOMAN (EMPHASIS ON THE WOMAN), NOT A SEXUAL PREDATOR, AND WE DON’T ASSAULT PEOPLE IN RESTROOMS!

And you, my dear. I imagine your fear is derived from your experience with the men in your life. They may have or may have tried to dominate you and have sexualized you on more than one occasion. You have generalized from this experience that all persons assigned male at birth will behave likewise. When you think logically about it, however, that experience should make you wary of anything those types of men are telling you about people who think, behave and dress as women (regardless of their genitilia).

I am a typical transwoman. When I was little, I watched movies and wanted to be the female protagonist, not the male one. When I was going through puberty I looked (and to this day still look) at pretty women as they pass, not because I wanted to get them into bed, but because I envied them and wanted to figure out how to look more like them (just as you no doubt sometimes do yourself with other women). I am a feminist because I hate the way men oversexualize everything, how they make women feel and how they dominate women constantly. Presenting as a woman, I experience all the same issues you experience with men. I have been hit on when I didn’t want to be and had catcalls come my way. I have been stalked and been in fear of my life while walking home at night. Why would someone like me have any reason to make you a target? I am an ally, a fellow worker in the struggle for equality. I am probably even more likely than you (statistically speaking) to be the subject of violence from a male. I know that the women’s room is a sanctuary for women — a safe place. I want it to remain that way, because I need safe places too. I DON’T WANT MEN TO COMMIT VIOLENCE AGAINST WOMEN, PERIOD!

Please try to learn more, because I am not the goblin you imagine. Men, you should focus on the sexual predators (please!) – they are a problem for all of us and they need to be stopped. You won’t find them dressed as women and trying to use a women’s restroom. And, women, you need to embrace a sister who wants nothing from you in the bathroom other than to be complimented on the way she looks. That, and to be given a chance to pee without being assaulted when I really need to go….

8 thoughts on “I Am Not a Threat”

  1. take no notice .do NOT listen. peoples views/judgements very SNOTTY NOSED. i am Disabled i get a lot Peoples BAD views/judgements ..Your a lot more LADY than Most ., Mark.x

    1. Mark,

      Thank you for your reminder. “Kindness first” should be everyone’s motto when it comes to basic human needs. I am so sorry to hear that you get judged badly.

      Lisa

  2. A brilliant article that zeroes right in on the heart of the matter. I could never understand the logic in this since most women’s bathrooms have separate stalls, and quite frankly when I am in ‘girl’ mode I sit down to pee!

    1. Paulette,

      You are right, although I am sympathetic to the sanctuary argument, which I believe is authentic. Still, in more and more places these days there are non-gender-specific restrooms. Now, if we could just teach men to sit down and not urinate on the toilet seat. That drives me bonkers!

      Lisa

  3. I’ve never understood the argument against trans women in women’s restrooms
    In fact for me the first time I did it I was extremely nervous, afraid I would be assaulted and yelled at and embarrassed
    Like you say I just want a safe place to do my business and leave
    Nothing more than that
    Rachael

    1. Rachael,

      I was so nervous the first time, thinking I would be called out. It was a non-event. I will admit to a few “queer” looks now and then, but maybe that was just because my eyeliner was misapplied that day…I choose to believe that, as it is better for my confidence!

      Lisa

  4. as 1 comic said a couple of years ago-all they want to do is take a s—
    & that question should have been raised in the above “just where do you propose they go”?

  5. Emily,

    Exactly! Walk a mile in my high heels before you start telling me I don’t belong where other women belong.

    Lisa

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