Mar 24, 2009

Validation

Lori D had written an interesting good blog regard personal validation recently that made me sit and think a bit. Like most I've certainly had my share of aha moments concerning this very subject and let's face it, being validated makes us feel like we have certainly arrived at our destination. It can set our minds at ease about whether or not we can successfully transition. But what does it really mean in the bigger picture? We are validated internally by our feelings and technically that's all we really need. At the end of the very long day we all simply want to be accepted though and in this we seek our validation.

There are 2 ways we find validation.

1) We work to be stealth and move about our day in our target gender without anyone ever guessing our pasts.
2) We allow people into our world and find acceptance as who we are.

Every time my wife and I got out for a drink, out for a dinner or out to a store and someone identifies me as female in the course of our interactions you can see a look of pleasure appear over my face. I exhale as though finding acceptance is like being relieved of the pressures of not feeling right for so long. Kind of like the pressure cooker was built up beyond it's recommended bursting point. What I've come to realize within the broader scope of things is that I feel much more satisfaction in someone "knowing" my past and truly accepting me as Karyn. To me, this shows the purity in the heart that I've often wondered was missing from the human race.

In countless instances that someone didn't know my story or someone who knew "Kev" but hadn't seen him in a long time find out, have a great reaction to the change and yet still accept me for what is in my heart. That in my opinion is the sincerest form of acceptance. It at times has lent itself to being some of the most humorous and memorable interactions I've had.

Walk down the street at any given time as a transsexual and you feel like the whole world is staring at you, so we really embrace those times we realize that stealth simply gives us the anonymity that we need. But in any given room of people we will always be guarded over our crazy little secret as though it is a juicy tidbit just lying in wait to be used against us.

We feel this way because in these circumstance we have no way to judge what may be in any given individuals heart. Someone who was nice to you 5 minutes before could suddenly look down at you because they have learned something that they don't understand or simply don't agree with. What a shame isn't it? Validation is great in any form but it is those that accept us knowing that all our flaws make us who we are, those are the people that are worth recognizing and to me that is the best form of validation.

3 comments:

VĂ©ronique said...

Lot of this validation writing going around. :)

I agree that both kinds of validation, and I also agree that being accepted by people who are in the know is very satisfying.

Nice to see a post from you!

Samantha said...

Since it seems to be the theme, I'm fomenting a post along these lines myself. Great post Karyn, and good to see you posting again. It's been a while. I can relate to that extra special feeling wwhen someone accepts you having known "Kev." In that respect I've been very blessed, with only one exception, I've been accepted and embraced more fully than I ever was by the people who've been part of my life the longest. Family and Friends alike. It's a wonderful feeling. I'd have to think made most real, and possible by ME accepting myself like I'd never done before.

You rock Karyn! Hug's for both you and Dee.

Sam

Lori D said...

I love your take on this, Karyn. And while I'm learning the goodness of the open air of not being gendered male any longer (after two hard years of trying), I know exactly what you mean when you're able to open your heart and share the intimate precious treasure that you really do have a special past that inevitably made you who you are today.

I think that's why I shared not one but several stories, including the support I received from my coworker and my cousin, both who know accept my true self. I can't wait to share more of this "one world" as my old life and family from there are integrated into my new life with all my new friends I've gained since beginning to move forward.

Nondisclosure seems to be the way to go. I have no desire to wear a Pepto Bismol colored t-shirt saying, "I'm a Trannie," but when I get to know someone on a more intimate level, there's no doubt I'll eventually share this part of me. (and by the way, the 'Sharon' girl I mentioned in my blog just friended me on Facebook. With the hundreds of trans friends and links to my blog, I guess that cat is out of the bag too!)

Again, great thoughts, and I too am glad to see you posting!