Hello everyone, I’m Dori Mooneyham and welcome to The Orbit!
I am thrilled to be surrounded by so many talented writers who are both personal friends as well as role models from afar. This is a great opportunity for so many of us godless do-gooders to do a little more good together, and I’m so excited to be a part of it!
A bit more about me. I’m a trans lesbian psych student who loves pop culture and getting worked up about her academic queer ponderings. I’m also the former host of Secular Shethinkers, a now defunct podcast that gave me a good excuse to drink and go on feminist rants once a week. I’ve also written a few things for other atheist blog sites. I get around, is what I’m implying.
But as some (or most) of you may be unfamiliar with my work, I thought it best to include a little list to give you an idea of what I’m all about over here at Trans and Godless.
Continue reading “Smooth Transition”
The appearance and gender expressions of sexual-minority women, and lesbians in particular, has been of academic interest for a considerable time (Clarke & Spence, 2013; Esterberg, 1996; Hutson, 2012; Huxley, Clarke, & Halliwell, 2013). Are there noticeable differences between heterosexual and homosexual female expression? And if so, what are the explanations and functions for deviant expressions among lesbians? By analyzing an inter-disciplinary collection of studies on lesbian gender expressions, I hope to begin to draw some patterns and new insight into what makes a lesbian “look like” a lesbian, and why she may (or may not) adopt such an expression.
Continue reading “Beyond the Swagger: The Serious Play of Lesbian Expression”
Social dichotomies are constructed binaries used to categorize groups in opposition to one another, typically due to believed mutually exclusive behaviors or characteristics. Two of the more pronounced dichotomies of our society are related to gender and sexuality: Male/Female and Heterosexual/Homosexual.
Although gender and sexuality are not directly related, both of these dichotomies share similar uses and histories in our society. For example, both dichotomies have a privileged/deviant model in terms of one group having the majority of sociopolitical power. Because the privileged groups, Men and Heterosexuals, have more to lose by being seen as members of the deviant groups, Women and Homosexuals, they are frequently defined in direct opposition to the deviant. In other words, one of Heterosexuality’s key characteristics is not being homosexual (Seidman, 2015). The same can be said for Maleness not being female or feminine. In this way, deviant groups tend to have more freedom of expression than their dominant counterparts, if only because they have no social power to lose if their identity is not validated. A straight man has much more to lose if his identities are not validated compared to a lesbian being mistakenly viewed as male or straight, for example (Seidman, 2015; Epstein, 2002). Continue reading “Dichotomous Deviants: Relationships Between Gender and Sexuality Binaries”
The Stonewall Riots of 1969 and their annual commemoration, in the form of Pride Parades, are arguably the most well-known queer rights events of the 20th century. But what makes Stonewall unique compared to similar demonstrations of the same decade, and what factors combined to ensure its commemoration continued over 40 years later?
I would argue the unique combination of an oppressive environment, a memorable resistance to that oppression, and community access to resources for future commemoration of the event, all worked together for the Stonewall Riots in a way that had not been replicated before. Two previous events demonstrate the importance of an environment oppressive enough to spark a memorable resistance from deviant minorities. Continue reading “Underdogs Hijacked: Stonewall Riots’ Commemorability”
CN: Rape Mention
For most trans women, “passing” refers to the ability to be perceived and treated by strangers as a cis woman. This can be determined by any number of things, including physical traits, gender expression, vocal pitch/tone, sexuality, and more.
Continue reading “Passing Privilege”
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”
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”
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”
[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”
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”