Pride Month: Standing Up To A Dress Code after 25 Years
When I began my gender transition on December 1, 2004, I had a feeling that if I had rushed my transition, it will not only damage my family’s core beliefs (or even my core beliefs and values), lose a significant number of friends (there are some who I even went to high school with that I’m likely not going to be or even on good terms with) and I’ve responded by kicking them out of Facebook – I’ve banned and blocked as few as three and as many as 75 because they didn’t follow my rules such as addressing me as “Ava”, using male pronouns, or even not showing me the respect I’ve been entitled to or the other party unfriended me because I recently admitted to being a bully for 15 years after being bullied for over 25 years (there are times when bullying is a necessary tactic in order to get the truth uncovered and most of the time it is justified, effectively “bullying the bully” method). That is why a few years ago, I decided to implement the 2-5-10-BANNED FOR LIFE RULE to crack down on transphobia (it’s a very similar structure to Florida’s 10-20-LIFE Law) and to maintain perfection well as continuing many traditions and beliefs long before I began my gender transition.
Not to mention when I started transitioning my name (Frank to Ava), gender identity (male to female), and sexual orientation (straight male to gay female) may have changed as well as my appearance as a woman since I came out as not only as a transgender woman but subsequently as a woman identifying as a lesbian. There is always a feeling I get every time I step in front of a mirror or even looking at the damage male puberty did to me some 25+ years ago would do some damage eventually would effectively come back to haunt me.
Also not to mention, if viewers don’t like the way I am now living as a woman , my makeup, my weight or my outfit, they will make sure to let me know. And so far I’ve definitely have seen mostly negative comments that have caused me to stand up for what I believe in and defending my decision to transition from a man to a woman and responding the way I responded.
I found myself spending hours upon hours to make sure my overall appearance as a woman and image was perfect before I went out in public. Maintaining my appearance as a woman and hiding the dreadful male features I am cursed with may have been more exhausting than weightlifting or carrying a 50 pound bag of bird feeder. The experience shed light on how preoccupied I am with the details of my overall appearance, which made me realise after resuming counselling sessions after a 15 year a scene was the right decision after going through three rapes/sexual assaults.
LGBT Pride Month (June) 2017 is now in full swing. It’s hot. It is sticky. It’s a time of year when a woman or a transwoman’s appearance are a greater hassle than usual because of the humidity. Nonetheless, the battle to tame the dreaded male features (unfortunately) continues and no way of resolving them unless I pay extra money (something I don’t have) and the reason I auctioned off my virginity to Kymberly in July 2014 and still her $100,000 payment to deflower me wasn’t even enough. Kymberly finally admitted to me she had gambled it all away in Las Vegas in March 2017 and heard from one of my sources that Kymberly placed a $50,000 bounty on someone she held long standing grudge against, and that made me realise that I decided that I cannot marry Kymberly. What this means is the long-term relationship with Ava Zinn and Kymberly Alvaraz is ending in legal action.
Flashback to 1991 to 2001
I started questioning my gender identity and sexual orientation – unusual for someone eight years of age – while I was serving time at the since closed Silvercrest Children’s Developmental Center in New Albany until being released in December 1992. That was when I realised my childhood was already coming to an end and I knew I was already just too young to be a dad at 10 years of age. I remember I was about to use the restroom and saw something many see is quite frankly some will say made me retarded. I saw a girl (besides my mom) using the restroom and that made me realised I really was different, in addition to watching “The Little Mermaid” and I remember having some unusual crush but nowhere near as Mary Kay Letourneau. It was on the car ride from New Albany to Van Buren with my mom and brother, how fortunate I was and didn’t realise it at that time until I reconnected with someone on Facebook and did my best to stay in touch after leaving Silvercrest.
In middle school I had been picked on and bullied by that time it was for two years after being released from Silvercrest in New Albany. I wasn’t strong enough not because I have Autism. I had began to make an attempt to become a female thinking ‘I’d trade my male parts for female parts’ and have the same characteristics just like any other girl after I heard the term “sex change” in 1995.
Unfortunately, everyone I went to school with knows why I broke a classroom window on April 18, 1996, at least that was what they thought from their standpoint. Years later, and I recently admitted to bullying.
When I launched my web site in 1999 as a junior at Mississinewa High School, there seemed to be a standard of some sort. It was also when I launched the original INNewsCenter, and knew who I wanted to become after some needed TLC from the right resources and people I can know and trust, or so I had thought.
Several years after graduating from Mississinewa High School, there seemed to be a no standard or structure when I sat foot at Indiana Wesleyan University as a college freshman and literally had no structure as construction was going on that basically affected my performance academically. There were several theories why I simply was not emotionally ready for college and when I began the gender transition, I knew there was going to be a fourth and fifth requirement that Jennie Conrad did even mention on the infamous dis-enrollment letter I received on September 27, 2001. I knew there was (1) finding another college to attend to transfer credits to IWU, (2) have psychological and psychiatric clearance (but unfortunately not as a full-time student nor as a male), and (3) a signed release if I recall to even apply for readmission. It’s safe to say now it’s just only a matter of finding the right college, getting the right number of credits and the right tools and necessities needed to finally close the IWU Cold Case.
Being more successful emotionally as a woman and still a father.
I do know that after transitioning and after my eldest daughter, Samantha, graduated from high school and IWU, I knew as the father of Samantha Zinn, I knew I had done a lot better job with raising Samantha; a transgender daughter, Tiffani; a third daughter, Tabitha; and two adopted daughters, Ashli and Kylee. After Samantha graduated high school five years ago she decided to attend college in the fall of 2013 and she didn’t want to make the same mistakes I did. Sure enough, in the Spring of 2016, Samantha earned her Associates Degree in Communications and followed in my footsteps and my former father-in-law (aka Samantha’s maternal grandfather) beforehand. Though there were times when raising Samantha, Tiffani (then Timothy), Tabitha, and currently with my now only son Kenneth as well as Ashli and Kylee, I had to frequently found myself in a number of parenting and day care situations I knew it was the right parenting call as most of them were very bad situations that could have necessitated Child Protective Services. My mom, the late Laura Bakula, my aunt-in-law Sheena were a great babysitter to Samantha, Tiffani, Ashli, and Tabitha long before “Vote for the Girls” launched. I also knew I had done a far better job as a father and as a woman than my mom did when she raised myself and my late brother, most of the parenting and discipline skills my mom used with me and my skills with my children differs from my mom’s methods. One in particular was the “no TV punishment,” but often most of the “Vote for the Girls Punishment for Failure” when a female contestant doesn’t win were also used on my children in the form of the “punishment fitting the crime” or “a justified sanction”. In fact, recently I Googled ‘female fathers of children’ and it seems as though a woman fathering children are nearly as uncommon as same sex marriage.
There is a subtle or possible no-so-subtle message that the specific type of parenting of a child is the fact that the child always has a mother and father regardless and the terms “transgender mother” and “transgendered father” are useless. After I came out to my children and recently with Tabitha, I told them “I will always be your father you can still address me as ‘Dad’.” It was something I had in mind and realized that a gender transition is very similar to a television station changing its network affiliation.
With that in mind, in addition to already existing “Vote for the Girls” franchise and several other cultural references to Lauren Brill, Brandi Chastain, and two-woman anchor teams becoming the norm, as well as basically creating the “Producers Have A Choice, Viewers Don’t” philosophy ten years ago when what is now known as INNCD 47 Action News launched (two women co-anchor news, a female meteorologist, and a female sports director). After I first watched a South Bend late newscast with Cindy Ward and Deborah Daniels at the anchor desk 15 years ago, I knew and remembered and had that flashback that first time I ever had lesbian sex.
Flashback to Spring and Summer 2002
It was that particular moment when I had “lesbian sex” with my first wife Angie, she was being impregnated by me (for the last time living as a male before coming out as a transgender woman the following year) and Angie being pregnant with my daughter Tabitha. It was also around Father’s Day of 2002 and a month after my mom died from liver and kidney failure. At the time, I had recently healed from an injury I sustained after I had attempted to arrest my own brother for kidnapping my then-2 year old son Timothy (now daughter Tiffani). It was also around that time I had also just experienced the first time in my life I’d ever been raped. I knew I had failed as male and tried my best to mask the emotional pain and never even told anyone nor did I even realized it until my brother drowned at Pine Lake.
There seems to be a subtle or maybe not-so-subtle message that looking modest means everyone looking exactly the same. So recently as part of pride month as well as a “Vote for the Girls” Punishment for Failure–Normani Kordei finished third place on Dancing with the Stars and despite the Moderators’ Save being used to decline Lauren Duski’s second place finish–based from what I had seen during not only those two competitions but also took the deaths of Holly Everman, Perri Johnson, and other factors, I had to overturn the Moderators’ Save and decided that there was not going to be a winning moderator. The pink, purple, blue, and red teams all were declared losers and face the most demeaning and diabolical punishments in “Vote for the Girls” history.
The transmen on the red team (as well as Devin on the blue team) have to go out in public in nothing but a breast binders while the transwomen on the purple team (including myself, as well as Kendra, Hillary, and Maci on the pink team as well as Bria Savage on the blue team and Lydia Delagatto on the red team) go out in public in only a bra and pants/skirt for not just Pride Month (June) 2017, but also July and August as well as the America’s Got Talent 12 and So You Think You Can Dance 14 competitions and just let biology do its work.
To my surprise, amazement, and most importantly self-acceptance as well as self-worth (I only did it on three occasions on the Vote for the Girls set), I actually kind of like being outside in just a bra and pants or skirt. The outfit match my gender identity as a woman, sexual orientation as a lesbian and overall appearance as a woman, yet could use some feminization. I waited until it was the right time to do so and many of you are probably thinking ‘THIS IS WAR!’ It may be necessarily something I want to do for the month of June but additionally when I’m in the mood or feeling intimate or looking at a biological female I’m interested in.
Despite my decision to go out in what some of you say is inappropriate and in bad taste, I was still nervous about it. The first time I was in a bra but with no shirt was on May 12, 2011 when Ryan Seacrest announced that Lauren Alaina and Haley Reinhardt were in the American Idol 10 Top 3 and the term “pull a Brandi Chastain” became well known. That’s because I think transwomen and women in our society and most certainly women and transwomen are scrutinized for too long. Every bit of the appearance of a woman and/or transwoman is picked apart.
While I was a bit self conscious, I had grabbed a shirt just in case should the “No Shirt. No Shoes. No Service” card come into play as this was constantly on my mind the whole time and trying to calm down chafing as I have yet to begin hormone therapy, I did my job as a transgender woman. In the process I realized the photos I posted on Social media should and—I hope do or will inspire more transwomen or even transmen binding his chest—speak louder to my professionalism as a webmaster than the way I look.
I’m just a woman: Officially a Transgender Woman since December 1, 2004. That’s not going to change.
I’m just a lesbian like any other woman who identifies as such: I was attracted to women as a male, and still find women attractive. But if the woman’s currently straight and is in a relationship with me and one benefit of the relationship is obviously having her as my sex partner (a rule I’ve had since 1993)… She will have to come out as a bisexual sooner or later. No ifs and or buts about it.
My gender identity and sexual orientation as a woman reflects the values and the family history I’ve always had long before the gender switch from man to woman and my work reflects my ability. The name, gender identity, and sexual orientation may change when transitioning from one sex to another, but everything else does not change, such as who you were before the transition, your personality, your lifestyle, your friends and family, etc.
Not even the DNA or chromosomes change with the gender transition: males and transfemales always have and always will have the dreaded Y chromosome and WILL ALWAYS BE A FATHER while females and transmales will ALWAYS BE A MOTHER.
Finally I can say I’m proud of my accomplishments as a woman despite the imperfections that were given to me such as the Y chromosome, the beard shadow (mostly unseen in photos if they aren’t covered or retouched), the flat chest (or my size 38AA cup) , the enlarged clitoris (this is what goes into the woman’s vagina to make children – the dreaded P-E-N-I-S), the big lumps between my legs (the male reproductive organs that produce sperm that go into the woman’s vagina). I can also say that once I am finally done having children and the timing is right then I can start the orchidectomy and begin estrogen and progesterone therapy for the remainder of my life, and help me get across the message that, like so many other transgendered men and women, not afraid to be different. Rather, I’m excited to embrace the truth of what a gender transition should look like in my view with all of the benefits and options available while they’re still intact before any genital reassignment surgery.
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