Previously Published on Patheos

Hi Patheos. I’m Dori Mooneyham, a trans-feminist butch lesbian writer, a queer youth counselor, and an infrequent public speaker on queer rights issues.

When I was first approached to write a guest article I wanted to do something light. A brief introduction of who I am interspersed with some Trans 101 stuff. Maybe I would write about the Wrong Body Narrative the media creates about trans women and explain why it’s so over-simplified it’s wrong. Maybe I would describe the relationship tropes surrounding trans women and our romantic/sexual partners. Maybe something about how trans women’s socialization as children is an entirely different beast from cis boys’ or cis girls’ socialization.

Continue reading Transitions

Vaginaversary: One Year After SRS

Today marks the day I had vaginoplasty last year, a date which will henceforth forever be known as my Vaginaversary.

Earlier this month I made a list of 10 Brutally Honest Tips for those seeking SRS based on the hardest aspects of having and recovering from surgery. I did this because SRS is probably the most difficult thing I’ve had to go through and I wanted to help other women avoid my pitfalls as much as could be controlled.

But today I want to give a more generalized review of my surgery with Dr. Chettawut and my results because I know there are lots of other trans women out there who need to do research on who is the best fit for them. So without further ado, let’s start talking about my snatch.

Continue reading Vaginaversary: One Year After SRS

Hate the Sin, Hate the Sinner

CN: Religious Abuse, Queer-Antagonist Slurs, Violence, Sexual Assault, Self-Destructive Behavior, Disordered Eating, Suicide

Long before I knew I was queer I only knew I was “different”. But not the praise-worthy kind of different. This was the kind of different that had adults muttering and whispering behind raised eyebrows. I learned euphemisms like “creative”, “artistic”, “chatty” and “expressive” were not compliments in rural Arkansas, they were warning signs. Warning signs of what, exactly? I had no clue, but I knew from their expressions and hushed tones it was serious. Before I knew what I was, before I knew there were others like me, one word I used most often to think of myself was Freak.

Continue reading Hate the Sin, Hate the Sinner

Butch Is Not Just For Cis Women

I am a trans woman. I am also a butch lesbian.

Despite what you may have heard, these are not contradicting identities.

A trans woman is a woman who was assigned male at birth by the medical industrial complex. This assignment is based entirely on the appearance of a phallus, specifically a phallus at least half-an-inch in length. That’s it.

A cis woman is a woman who was assigned female at birth by the medical industrial complex. This assignment is based entirely on the lack of a phallus (or a phallus less than half-an-inch, therefore acceptably small enough to be considered a clitoris). That’s it.

So forget whatever the hell you’ve heard about chromosomes, gonads, gametes, fertility, or anything else. (Chances are good you and your doctor have no idea what half of those are for you personally, anyway.) If you can accept that, it’s easy to accept how greatly variable everything else we take for granted about “sex” and “gender” is per individual.

Continue reading Butch Is Not Just For Cis Women

10 Brutally Honest Tips for SRS

[CN: Depression, Suicide, Pain, Surgery]

This month it will have been one year since I flew to Thailand to receive a vaginoplasty (aka SRS) from Dr. Chettawut. (Which I am affectionately referring to as my vagina-versary.) It is one of the most difficult, rewarding, and life-altering experiences I have ever had. Some obstacles were a complete surprise, but many could have been mitigated or prevented if I had been given a head’s up.

So I feel it’s my duty to try to ensure my fellow trans sisters seeking vaginoplasty don’t make the same mistakes I did. Let’s let our hair down, cut the bullshit, and talk about things that really need to be mentioned but no one else will. Continue reading 10 Brutally Honest Tips for SRS

Torn Pages

The first diary I bought was pink with flowers and teddy bears on it. It was small enough to fit in my pocket and, most importantly, had a lock and key. I picked it up at the book fair, along with a Choose-Your-Own-Adventure Star Wars book, a How-To-Draw Monsters book, and a Roald Dahl cookbook. Throughout the day adults made gentle remarks about how “unusual” my diary was, but I was excited to have a place to write my secrets.

At home I was forced to give the diary to my little sister because, “Boys don’t keep diaries, they keep journals.” I was given a red spiral with no lock and key as a replacement. My sister returned the diary when we were alone, but I never wrote in it. I hid it under my toys, along with a dress I started wearing whenever I could lock myself in my room. I wrote in the red spiral to keep up appearances. Continue reading Torn Pages

Queer Canons and Sapphic Ships

I have a confession to make.

I apply queer theory to literally all the fiction I watch or read. I can’t remember how young I was when I started doing this, but I’m too old to stop it now.

I will create queer canon even if there’s already a token queer character or two. By the time I’m done with a series, nearly everyone is bi or pan or ace or aro or gay, there’s usually at least one or two trans people, and I will have lengthy explanations for different unseen love entanglements and poly arrangements in order to ship two characters who are not officially together on-screen or on-page.

Continue reading Queer Canons and Sapphic Ships