Q: Is it better to be a man or a woman? What do you think about gender change? About the trans community?

Is it better to be a woman than a man?

As someone who has experienced what it’s like to be both a man and a woman, here’s my answer:

It’s better to be the person you really are. Whether that is man, woman, a mixture, or none of the above, I speak from experience when I say that it is absolutely horrible to try to be someone you aren’t.

What is your opinion about gender change?

Unless you’re discussing people who identify as genderflux or genderfluid, gender doesn’t change for most people. If you’re meaning transgender people who transition, then it would typically be more accurate to say that their gender didn’t change, but they changed their bodies to align more closely with the gender that they’ve always had.

What do you think about the transgender community as a whole?

I haven’t met every trans person in the world, so I wouldn’t presume to speak about or on behalf of the whole.

I’ve met many transgender people – probably well over 100 – and the people I’ve met are about as diverse as you’ll find. I’ve met conservatives and liberals; Christians, Jews, Muslims, Buddhists, Hindi, Wiccan, agnostics and atheists; people of all races; people from all parts of the world; people from rich backgrounds and from poor; people who transitioned decades ago, people who transitioned more recently, people who are just beginning their transitions, people who haven’t yet begin their transition, and people who aren’t planning to transition; people who experience their gender as fitting into the conventional gender binary and people who smash that binary to pieces. I’ve met transgender doctors, nurses, police officers, fire fighters, programmers, authors, artists, musicians, actors, politicians, wait staff, cashiers, bankers, truckers, teachers, clergy, and more. I’ve met transgender mothers, fathers, parents, children, cousins, twins, only children, grandparents, and siblings.

You know what threads all these people have in common? They are all human.

And just like humans in general, while there are all kinds of trans people, I have noticed that nearly universally, the trans people I’ve met have big hearts and are generally good people. And most will go out of their way to help another person (regardless of whether the other person is trans).

While I’ve met a lot of jerks in my life, so far I haven’t met a trans person who I’d say was a jerk. Who knows? Maybe there’s something about the trans experience which teaches compassion and empathy.

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