A relative of mine, who's about 70 now, has been very helpful to me over the last three years whilst I have settled in Italy. He's very much of the hippie generation (groovy, baby!) and was once a card-carrying member of a communist party, when communism was fashionable. Counter-culture and the struggle of the proletariat kind of run in his veins, although he's come round to feeling that Marxism wasn't that great after all and that eating in good restaurants is the best way to live! But the point of this preamble is that you'd have thought he'd be a bit progressive when it came to LGBT stuff, yet ...
I saw him the other week and there was a political debate on TV including a former minister who is now transitioning (male to female). "You know, that's not a woman," he said, "that's a man. He's still got a penis." My heart sank, for two reasons. (1) Is that the criterion? And (2), this wasn't the first time. A young, pretty trans woman passed us in the street a couple of years ago and from him it was, "That's a man, you know." We were in a crowd and in a big rush so I wasn't in much of a position to suggest a better way of seeing this girl until it was way too late. This time I just pointed out that she was transgender, and left it at that.
My relative keeps himself to himself and is not going out to cause trouble to others like the rest of my family. For my own peace of mind I'd rather he didn't refer to trans people in this way but reason tells me to just leave it at that rather than going into the whole "what is trans" spiel for him. I am giving up on trying to correct people set in their ways, as my last post discussed. Of course, he doesn't know I am trans and seeing him is one of the rare forays I make into male mode these days. I feel it best to be safe in unwanted male mode than sorry in true female mode, and in that I am with the large majority of trans people, sadly. It shouldn't be this way, but it still is.
I do have hope in the younger generation who seem much more clued up and accepting of sexual and gender variance, with fewer doctrines apparently being forced on them. It strikes me the older generation could be learning more from the young.Sue x