all 27 comments

[–]threefingersam 35 insightful - 2 fun35 insightful - 1 fun36 insightful - 2 fun -  (2 children)

Yeah it's some bullshit language policing where it shouldn't be. Women's medical care shouldn't be hindered by such nonsense.

Also, if someone's dysphoric and still okay with their obviously female body functions, they've got some hard internalized misogyny. That woman thought she could "identify out of being a woman" so she hates being called one.

[–]lunarenergy8[S] 20 insightful - 1 fun20 insightful - 0 fun21 insightful - 1 fun -  (1 child)

Exactly. I do think some people are dysphoric for sure and I cannot imagine how hard that is ... but I cannot help but question those who are still somehow okay with female body functions. It is sad that we support identifying out of being a woman more than breaking down the constraints that leave women feeling like who they are is not "womanly enough" whatever that means.

[–]jelliknight 5 insightful - 1 fun5 insightful - 0 fun6 insightful - 1 fun -  (0 children)

Dysphoric just means 'uncomfortable with your body'. 'Gender dysphoria' means being uncomfortable with your sexed body parts - i.e. breast, cellulite etc. So, roughly 100% of women are or have been gender dysphoric at some point.

[–]Ofthewoods 24 insightful - 2 fun24 insightful - 1 fun25 insightful - 2 fun -  (7 children)

I don’t know, but my husband and I are planning to try to conceive soon and I am dreading encountering this. I’ve really struggled with the way women are objectified and reduced to their body parts/functions at times of my life and a lot of this new gender neutral anatomy language makes me feel like a human incubator, a flesh machine, reduced to my body’s basest functions. I can’t stand it.

I am hoping for a midwife/doula situation rather than a hospital and I’m not sure how widespread this stuff has gotten (I’m in the U.S.).

[–]lunarenergy8[S] 12 insightful - 1 fun12 insightful - 0 fun13 insightful - 1 fun -  (3 children)

I cannot imagine what you must be feeling - it is reducing us to our most basic functions.

I am Canadian, but have been abroad all over the place for a few years now so am unsure, but some people I know in Canada who are interested in or are in women's health, including doula work, are all about inclusive language ... even moving from "women's health clinics" to "family health practices" so as to ensure "all pregnant people" and "all people with periods" feel welcome ... not sure if it is as widespread in US ... I have a background in Education and it is deeply rooted in all aspects of education from kindergarten to post-secondary in Canada I hope to be a doula one day and want to work in women-centered care on many levels, but this movement is scaring me away as I am sure I would be in deep trouble for being "exclusive"

I hope you are able to find woman centered care as you journey into Motherhood

[–]Realwoman 16 insightful - 1 fun16 insightful - 0 fun17 insightful - 1 fun -  (0 children)

Hearing pregnant people is like nails on a chalkboard to me

[–]Ofthewoods 10 insightful - 1 fun10 insightful - 0 fun11 insightful - 1 fun -  (0 children)

Thank you so much. I have actually been finding moving into this stage of life to feel more empowering than I expected, learning about how intricate the physiological communication is between mama and baby, the power of the female body, and the non-gendered language deflates that for me. I will not hesitate to change care providers if they erase motherhood from pregnancy and birth. I can understand using non-gendered language on a one-on-one level if a TiF is the one receiving care but women should not be expected to change how they experience or refer to pregnancy, birth and motherhood. Maybe being open with them about how and why it feels so dehumanizing for motherhood to be erased from birth can help to turn the tide in however small a way.

[–]Ofthewoods 6 insightful - 1 fun6 insightful - 0 fun7 insightful - 1 fun -  (0 children)

Also, that is shocking to hear how embedded in the education system it is in Canada. I feel the U.S. is several years behind Canada with regard to social issues usually, so it will be interesting watching for that :(

Thank you for being passionate about women-centered care! Hopefully I find my way to a local doula with your outlook.

Edit: wording

[–]Rivergirl 8 insightful - 1 fun8 insightful - 0 fun9 insightful - 1 fun -  (0 children)

I had my baby at home with a midwife. She had “inclusive” language in her paperwork. I might have gone with someone else because of it, but I ended up with not many options near me. It never came up in person and I ended up really loving her. A lot of people pay lip service, but are not going to push that on you.

[–]tinydilophosaur 6 insightful - 2 fun6 insightful - 1 fun7 insightful - 2 fun -  (0 children)

I'm facing the same fears. At this point I've decided when I get that far, I'm going to politely ask them to not refer to me by body parts as I find it dehumanizing. If they aren't on board I'll look for someone else. I'm not a "uterus-haver", I'm a woman.

[–]venecia 21 insightful - 1 fun21 insightful - 0 fun22 insightful - 1 fun -  (0 children)

How are we expected to ensure people never feel like they have to explain themselves if we are asking for pronouns and how they refer to their body parts - isn't this asking for explanation???

Yep. Welcome to the rabbit hole where you can't do anything right and the points don't matter!

We need to push for sex-based terminology. It's all fine to me if someone wants to be called a man, have a male name, whatever. Go nuts. But if you're happy to keep your vagina, ovaries, and uterus, don't complain when that's what they're called at the the office of a doctor who specializes in those specific organs.

[–]DustyKitten 14 insightful - 8 fun14 insightful - 7 fun15 insightful - 8 fun -  (0 children)

If a male refers to me as pregnant person, I will to him as sexist penis haver for the rest of our encounters.

[–]NecessaryScene1 16 insightful - 1 fun16 insightful - 0 fun17 insightful - 1 fun -  (2 children)

It's not "gendered language", it's "sexed language".

This is a context - indeed THE context - where sex is what matters. Therefore it makes sense to use sex-based terminology. There is no need for "gender" roles to be attached to that sex-based use. You are not projecting any societal preconceptions about what a "woman" or "mother" is - you are using the terms strictly in the biological sense.

Whatever hang-ups a female enby or TiF has about being called a mother need to be put at the door before they start attempting sexual reproduction. If they can't do that, they're probably not ready.

Freddie McConnell(?) recently lost her appeal to try to be named the "father" of her child. The court made the very clear judgement that it was wrong to assume that "mother" was a gendered term - it was the specific role in reproduction, and there was no need to assume the gender of a mother, and it was incorrect to assume that only "women" could be mothers.

That was an interesting piece of line drawing - sure, we let you identify as a "woman", and that might be a "gender identity", but that's no reason to couple actual sexual function to gender identity. By TRAs own logic, transmen can be mothers, have vaginas, uteruses, breasts... Those are not "gendered". Seems like a reasonable compromise to me, if these people could compromise. Sure, maybe you can be "he", but you're still the mother.

[–]msteacherlady 4 insightful - 2 fun4 insightful - 1 fun5 insightful - 2 fun -  (0 children)

But then how do you legally define which parent is going to play catch with the kids and which one is going to make cupcakes for the school bake sale? /s

[–]lunarenergy8[S] 1 insightful - 1 fun1 insightful - 0 fun2 insightful - 1 fun -  (0 children)

My bad - I am so used to seeing the headings of these inclusive "information" infographics/pamphlets, etc. which says gendered language that I sometimes end up conflating the two ... thanks for pointing it out!

I heard about Freddy McConnell, didn't realise that they had ruled against "father" ... that case is a really important one in seeing some of the weird logic used by TRAs.

Definitey a reasonable compromise, but, like you said, compromise does not seem to be accepted on any terms by many TRAs.

[–]Lyssa 15 insightful - 1 fun15 insightful - 0 fun16 insightful - 1 fun -  (1 child)

"How can someone be dysphoric, yet be okay with getting pregnant and even menstruating (as BC can easily stop this experience), yet the language itself is too triggering?"

This is exactly what I thought when I encountered "people with uteruses" when researching for the upcoming birth of my daughter. How can a trans man be ok with pushing a baby out of his/her vagina (and unlike others on here I am willing to call trans people by their pronouns out of courtesy unless they are abusive/fraudsters/insisting on referring to me as cis or a menstruator etc.) and not be ok with reading pregnancy literature referring to "women"? What is potentially more triggering for dysphoria: a word or the act of giving birth? If you think you're up to the latter you should be able to handle the former...

What is often neglected: All this "inclusive" language is inherently excluding for girls and women without words to describe their bodies either due to disabilities or a religious/traditional upbringing. Ask 10 random women on the street to describe exactly what the words vagina, vulva, uterus, cervix and ovaries refer to and be prepared for some very troubling answers... If pap smears were recommended for "people with cervixes" a lot of women would have no idea that this applies to them.

[–]Anna_Nym 3 insightful - 1 fun3 insightful - 0 fun4 insightful - 1 fun -  (0 children)

I think like a lot of language reform movements, it's driven by the most extreme activists with little attempt to poll for population preferences. I've known trans men personally who hate the "people with periods" and other similar supposedly inclusive constructions because it emphasizes the most dysphoric aspects of their bodies. I've also known others who didn't hate the constructions, but thought it was unnecessary and saw how it erases women. (They also pointed out that most trans men do not have periods because of T)

But social justice has no way to theorize how to accommodate when an identity group doesn't have uniform opinion. And so we get the loudest, most performative norms.

[–]radtionalfem 9 insightful - 9 fun9 insightful - 8 fun10 insightful - 9 fun -  (0 children)

"Hello, pregnant person, I'll be your doctor today. How are you doing? You comfortable? How should I respectfully refer to your genitalia? Ok, I'm going to insert the speculum into your front hole now so I can get a look at the entrance to your duderus."

[–]uio 6 insightful - 1 fun6 insightful - 0 fun7 insightful - 1 fun -  (0 children)

It's ridiculous. I'm pregnant and my birth club on Reddit has rules that we have to say things like "hey all" rather than "hey ladies". It's a group of about 1500 women but there is a transman and several nonbinaries so we have to bend our language to suit them.

I'm glad my obgyn's office hasn't adopted this nonsense. Probably helps that I live in a pretty conservative area.

[–]morethanafeeling 5 insightful - 1 fun5 insightful - 0 fun6 insightful - 1 fun -  (0 children)

I don't know if it's because I live in a red state or not, but I'm pregnant and thankfully I haven't had to deal with any pronoun or "inclusive" language at my OBGYN.

[–]msteacherlady 5 insightful - 1 fun5 insightful - 0 fun6 insightful - 1 fun -  (2 children)

Look, I don't gatekeep womanhood by pregnancy, but I will say this: I have never felt more at the mercy of my sex than I did when I was in labor. I'm appalled at the erasure of this as a woman-exclusive experience.

[–]jelliknight 7 insightful - 1 fun7 insightful - 0 fun8 insightful - 1 fun -  (1 child)

No one gatekeeps womanhood. Reality doesn't need keepers. Every single adult who gives birth is a woman, and every single adult who impregnates them is a man.

[–]msteacherlady 2 insightful - 3 fun2 insightful - 2 fun3 insightful - 3 fun -  (0 children)

Thank you for saying that! Does it show that I've had some stupid arguments on reddit before?

[–]iMeMiss 3 insightful - 1 fun3 insightful - 0 fun4 insightful - 1 fun -  (1 child)

How can someone be dysphoric, yet be okay with getting pregnant and even menstruating (as BC can easily stop this experience), yet the language itself is too triggering?

I've wondered about this as well--the presumably heterosexual intercourse in creating a baby didn't send this person around the bend, but referring to their cervix might cause mental anguish. Huh? It also blows my mind that it's now considered transphobic to say that I breastfed all three of my children. It's not inclusive of people who don't have breasts or who wish they had breasts. Apparently it's chestfeeding now.

[–]Anna_Nym 4 insightful - 1 fun4 insightful - 0 fun5 insightful - 1 fun -  (0 children)

I don't understand the chestfeeding/breastfeeding thing. Breasts themselves are not even a sexed body part. Men have breasts, too. They just don't (typically) have the same visual prominence as women's or the ability to feed a baby.

But also, if you don't have milk-producing breasts, you're not breastfeeding!

[–]jelliknight 3 insightful - 1 fun3 insightful - 0 fun4 insightful - 1 fun -  (0 children)

Yep. Let's make 99.5% of women feel awkward and othered in their own bodies so that 0.5% of women can feel validated in their fantasy.

[–]zephyranthes 2 insightful - 2 fun2 insightful - 1 fun3 insightful - 2 fun -  (0 children)

If you're asked what are your pronouns, say "I / me / mine". If they persist, clarify these are your third-person pronouns, so USE THEM, TRANSPHOBIC BIGOT.

If asked about body parts, say something outrageously absurd. Call your vagina a collarbone, your uterus a thumb, your ovaries nostrils. When asked to lie on your back, call them out for not asking how you refer to your back. Ask how (s)he refers to his/her head, then ask if it's functioning ok. Then change ob/gyns. If fetishists can shop around for malpracticing shrinks, you should be able to find a woman-friendly ob/gyn.

People who aren't on good terms with reality exist, and there are protocols for caring for them. If a severely autistic person goes to a doctor, his/her carer can tell the doctor in advance what to do, what not to do, how to address the patient, how to address the patient's stuffed toy, etc. An adult fetishist can similarly demand the ob/gyn cater to her fetish (and an ob/gyn should, because the life and health of the child are at stake). But questions like these shouldn't be asked of a woman by default. Some people eat feces, yet a nutritionist doesn't ask if you do.

Expecting mothers are heroines. They're risking their life, and sacrificing their health, making a new human. They shouldn't be dealing with this bullshit. They shouldn't expect insults first order of business when going to a doctor.