Page 1 of 2 12 LastLast
Results 1 to 25 of 40

Thread: the term "transgender" vs transvestite, crossdresser, or transsexual

  1. #1
    Banned Read only
    Join Date
    Jan 2019
    Location
    South suburbs of Chicago
    Posts
    17

    the term "transgender" vs transvestite, crossdresser, or transsexual

    The term "transgender" seems to be the media's preferred term these days for anyone who does not fit the conventional gender roles, and the media applies this term to many diverse individuals. But, as a professional writer and editor, the precision of language is important to me. And "transgender" is really an imprecise, meaningless term. It essentially means anyone who transcends gender. That could be a guy who gets a thrill wearing a dress, or a drag queen who dresses up to entertain, or an individual who genuinely identifies as the opposite sex.

    I'm old enough to remember when "transvestite" and "transsexual" were commonly used terms in this area, though both terms seem to be considered derogatory and politically incorrect these days. That is unfortunate, because those terms are much more precise, accurate, and descriptive than the bland, can-mean-anything "transgender." And neither is derogatory, both are simply descriptive. A transvestite is simply an individual who wears clothes of the opposite gender. "Vest" refers to clothes. Nothing bad about that. It means the same thing as a crossdresser, though some people nitpick about that. A transsexual is an individual who (through hormones and/or surgery) has become, is in the process of becoming, or wishes to become the opposite sex.

    Chelsea Maning is a transsexual. I am a transvestite/crossdresser. There have been times when I thought I was a transsexual, but those thoughts always go away. That's how I know they are not real.

    I prefer honesty, precision, and directness in language, regardless of political correctness. It aids in understanding each other clearly. I always say that if people would just learn to communicate more clearly, 90 percent of the world's problems would immediately vanish.

  2. #2
    Reality Check Krisi's Avatar
    Join Date
    Feb 2014
    Posts
    7,231
    People argue here over "labels" and the meaning of the different words. In the end, it changes nothing. I will say that the term "transvestite" seems a little insulting to me. I prefer "crossdresser".

    As for the media, they are so misinformed and dishonest, I don't pay attention to them.
    Krisi

  3. #3
    Platinum Blonde member Ressie's Avatar
    Join Date
    Feb 2008
    Location
    Michigan
    Posts
    3,570
    Yes TG is a bit ambiguous. Most folks (because of the media) think a transgender person is the same as a transexual. The word should be known to include all aspects of gender bending. And since it's an adjective rather than a noun, it's miss used all the time.
    "You're the only one to see the changes you take yourself through", Stevie Wonder

  4. #4
    Senior Member NancySue's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jun 2016
    Location
    Southern Illinois
    Posts
    1,564
    Well said, Krisi...especially the media and society in general....lack of knowledge, hype, sensation, etc. No wonder, though. Remember when the word “gay” was generally used? Now it’s GLBT..XYZ each having their own agendas, definitions...they even squabble among themselves over definitions. I’m a happy heterosexual crossdresser with no desire to be a woman...just dress and as well as possible, look like one.

  5. #5
    Senior Member
    Join Date
    Feb 2012
    Location
    The South
    Posts
    1,677
    Words are important and Jessica is correct to point out the importance of precision in language.
    I have never thought that the word TRANSVESTITE was out of date. It well describes what most of us like to do which is to wear clothing that is usually associated with the opposite sex. Cross dressing is just a modern version that attempts to leave behind some of the negative perversions of the word transvestite into the likes of the derogatory "Tranny", a word that was usually followed by some sort of insult. Cross dresser is a word that is harder to change into a glib insult.

    I wonder about the words transexual and transgender as despite the use of hormones and surgery we cannot really replace our gender. That is determined at the cellular level and we cannot change it.

    We can however change our exterior appearance and behavior to greater or lesser degrees.

    There will always be labels which are just shorthand descriptions of what we like to do and how we like to appear. They will never suit everyone and we shall just have to live with the ambiguity and imprecision.
    Last edited by CONSUELO; 01-29-2019 at 09:55 AM. Reason: missing sentence

  6. #6
    Just being true to myself Jolene Robertson's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jun 2012
    Location
    Southern US
    Posts
    691
    A term used when I was younger but is seldom used anymore and is probably more precise is "Queer"
    Dictionary result for queer
    /kwir/
    adjective
    adjective: queer; comparative adjective: queerer; superlative adjective: queerest
    1.
    strange; odd.
    "she had a queer feeling that they were being watched"
    synonyms:
    odd, strange, unusual, funny, peculiar, curious, bizarre, weird, outlandish, eccentric, unconventional, unorthodox, uncanny, unexpected, unfamiliar, abnormal, anomalous, atypical, untypical, different, out of the ordinary, out of the way, extraordinary, remarkable, puzzling, mystifying, mysterious, perplexing, baffling, unaccountable, incongruous, uncommon, irregular, outré, offbeat, singular, deviant, aberrant, freak, freakish; More

    I know it isn't used much anymore and has changed meaning but doesn't it really describe us better than many of the more used terms?

  7. #7
    Banned Read only Vicky_Scot's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 2006
    Location
    Bonnie Scotland
    Posts
    994
    Transgender is a umbrella term that include transvestites/crossdressers, transsexuals and much more. Is it so hard to understand this as its not difficult.

  8. #8
    Seňora Member
    Join Date
    Nov 2004
    Posts
    3,883
    Haven't we beaten this dead horse to death numerous times already?

    You label me
    I label you
    So I dub the Unforgivin

  9. #9
    Banned Read only Vicky_Scot's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 2006
    Location
    Bonnie Scotland
    Posts
    994
    Yes we have. Well said Roberta. x

  10. #10
    Platinum Member Teresa's Avatar
    Join Date
    Dec 2013
    Location
    UK
    Posts
    11,538
    Jessica,
    You are quite correct in your labelling , I feel it's a step in the right direction to embrace the TG term to cover the spectrum as Vicky states in her reply . Maybe some of the drag queenacts and other stage performers are not all CDers but use it as part of their act so I wouldn't worry too much if they don't fall into TG spectrum.

    The media has been lax in the past by misusing the Transgender and Transsexual terms , it's possibly better to say we all come under the TG umbrella and the transsexual is the final step .

    I still can't understand why the , Crossdressing and Transvestite labels cause so many concerns when it is the same thing and we are all technically a CDer .

    As a writer you do need to research carefully and use the terms in the correct way , I feel we possibly have enough , the more we look for new ones the more it confuses the people that matter around us .

    I've been through the label box , I know which ones apply but now I'm out full time they matter very little , the general public aren't that bothered , they don't know what anatomy is real and what isn't they either accept me as Teresa when I meet them or they don't . Whatever label I throw at them won't make any difference , all most people appear to say is , " Oh you're trans !" that could mean anything but if it keeps the peace I'll go along with it . I've very rarely heard any one use the term crossdsresser or tranvestite , personally I do prefer to say I'm TG if I have to say anything .
    The real me ,no going back.

  11. #11
    Banned Spammer
    Join Date
    Aug 2008
    Location
    Between here and there but mostly here close to the donuts.
    Posts
    22,266
    The LAST thing you should do is listen to the media because they have a habit of not telling the truth and making up stuff.
    There is a difference between trans and a for hobby CDer that just likes dressing.Nothing wrong with that course.

  12. #12
    Weirdest woman ever! docrobbysherry's Avatar
    Join Date
    Sep 2007
    Location
    Orange County, Calif.
    Posts
    21,236
    Here's another one to add to your list, Jessica. When I began dressing I thot I was a transexual. But, then realized I was content to be just a crossdresser. And, that's how I define myself to folks

    However, I now think of myself of more of a "female impersonator"!
    U can't keep doing the same things over and over and expect to enjoy life to the max. When u try new things, even if they r out of your comfort zone, u may experience new excitement and growth that u never expected.

    Challenge yourself and pursue your passions! When your life clock runs out, you'll have few or NO REGRETS!

  13. #13
    Member Leelou's Avatar
    Join Date
    Feb 2009
    Location
    Spokanistan
    Posts
    480
    Quote Originally Posted by Robertacd View Post
    Haven't we beaten this dead horse to death numerous times already?

    You label me
    I label you
    So I dub the Unforgivin
    Did you notice that the OP just joined this month? It's not very welcoming to have one of your first threads called out as being a dead horse.

    So Jessica, I agree that it's unfortunate that the term transvestite is considered derogatory. I actually like the term T-girl, which of course is a derivative of Tranny-girl. And thanks for the interesting thread!

  14. #14
    Untitled
    Join Date
    Apr 2006
    Location
    Somewhere near the "Umber" but not "Ull"
    Posts
    7,041

    Moderator note

    Quote Originally Posted by Robertacd View Post
    Haven't we beaten this dead horse to death numerous times already?

    You label me
    I label you
    So I dub the Unforgivin

    Quote Originally Posted by Vicky_Scot View Post
    Yes we have. Well said Roberta. x
    Quote Originally Posted by Leelou View Post
    Did you notice that the OP just joined this month? It's not very welcoming to have one of your first threads called out as being a dead horse.
    And I agree with Leelou, this is just rude, and is not a welcoming face of this forum. Threads get closed, new members join and have a view. Whilst not every question has been asked, most have at one point or another, do we shut down a thread just because some of the older members have seen it and discussed it no end of times. The moderators will merge or delete threads if there is already one open on the particular topic, if the moderators have not deleted the thread, it's valid simple as.

    Simple solution, if you think a topic is a dead horse, move on, don't make new members regret joining the forum.
    Listen carefully to what is said, quite often you can hear what is not being said

    The joy of correcting a mistake can bring pain to another

  15. #15
    Platinum Member Beverley Sims's Avatar
    Join Date
    Nov 2011
    Location
    Lowestoft UK. Beverley was here.
    Posts
    30,354
    Languages change all the time to suit the mood of the day.

    Some words used 50 years ago are considered offensive today.

    It is the same as dress codes, if women wore summer fashions of today even thirty years ago they could be arrested for obscene behaviour.

    Same applies to mens appearance.
    Work on your elegance,
    and beauty will follow.

  16. #16
    Platinum Member
    Join Date
    Oct 2010
    Location
    Western Washington
    Posts
    11,145
    I'm a mature person....by age. Back in the old days the only two words I remember are transvestite and transsexual. There was no transgender. Now? Listening to the media there are so many descriptive words thrown around I wonder if anyone really knows where he or she falls. As I have constantly said define yourself with complete sentences and paragraphs. Don't throw out one word to describe yourself.

    The current administration in Washington wants to define a person's sex by his or her birth genitalia. Total ignorance of science. So, Chelsea Manning would always be a male by her birth genitalia. Of course, if a transsexual has had all the necessary surgery to remove or create a new internal and external appearance will a dna test be required to identify and then put a person in one of two boxes?

    I know this identification has been beaten to death on this site, but, there are forces in play to attack a person's personal identity.

  17. #17
    Sallee Sallee's Avatar
    Join Date
    Apr 2007
    Location
    San Diego
    Posts
    3,017
    I guess does it really matter. Society and the people in it are going to think what ever they are going to think. Personally I prefer cross dresser but transvestite will work it just sounds to clinical. Transgender works too but it is all encapsulating. Honestly it doesn't really matter Just have fun and enjoy your chosen gender of the moment. Just don't call me Sir
    [SIGPIC][/SIGPIC]Sallee

  18. #18
    Banned Read only
    Join Date
    Jan 2019
    Location
    South suburbs of Chicago
    Posts
    17
    Wow! I'm happy to see the lively discussion! Thanks to all who posted. This forum is great no matter what your view, because it is Communication! We all need to communicate more, and we all need to communicate more effectively.

  19. #19
    Member DanaM64's Avatar
    Join Date
    Aug 2011
    Location
    Sweden
    Posts
    172
    Nice revival of an old but always ongoing topic... As you pointed out, the press keeps it alive and unfortunate for us it is used as a Trojan horse to desecrate all of us in one shot... As an old horse myself, (oops a label!) I never minded the people that know me using any of the mentioned terms. But, I do not hesitate to correct or give a different view of an article when I hear ignorance...

    Welcome Jessica!

  20. #20
    Isn't Life Grand? AllieSF's Avatar
    Join Date
    Feb 2007
    Location
    San Francisco Area
    Posts
    11,465
    Jessica, I agree with what you are saying to a point. There is always a "but" or "however" in most of our threads. I like the idea of using transgender as the simple collecting term for all who fall under the umbrella as defined by this site. yes, there is always a lot of debate about terms and definitions, but on a site like this with members from all over the place, different cultures and opinions, some type of fixed definition tries to help pull us altogether. I, as many other also believe, that labels are good when talking about general things and then get trickier in their usage as we get more detailed in those same conversations. Us in the business or lifestyle and falling under that umbrella term mostly understand when someone is talking details and/or nuances of their or somebody else's identity.

    Now, for those newbies and those outside of our part of life, see our segment of life as something newer. Thus simply identifying oneself as being transgender or trans is enough for them to grasp the general meaning of what that represents, without getting into the conflicting and numerous other labels and which one is better than another. If that outsider really wants more detailed information and explanation, then the use of the other labels becomes appropriate for that conversation. I have found that too much detail too soon may be unwanted and distracting for others to understand the answer to a simple question from them.

    When I came out to everyone over a period of about 6 months a few short years ago, I just said I was trans or transgender, and that I liked to present as a woman when I wanted. Later when time and their true interest aligned, we would get into deeper conversations, and that detailed conversation was rare for most of them. So my mantra when talking about myself and others like myself is to "keep it simple" until they ask more detailed questions.

  21. #21
    Senior Member Asew's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jan 2018
    Location
    Rochester, NY
    Posts
    1,401
    It is annoying how words have a specific definition but what most people think of the word means something else. In particular you touched on how transgender is an umbrella term for anyone who deviates from their assigned gender at birth (but most people think someone who wants to transition to the opposite sex or already has), and how a transvestite is just another word for crossdresser (but most people think someone who does it for sexual purposes). So when we use these words, we have to consider both the definition and how people see the word. That is kind of why I prefer the non-binary label for myself, since it defines me and since it isn't as widely known there isn't much misconception on the definition. But I still see myself as transgender and cross dresser, since there is a lot of overlap in these labels (since some labels are broad and some are specific).

  22. #22
    Senior Member Jean 103's Avatar
    Join Date
    May 2013
    Location
    Central Coast, CA
    Posts
    1,572
    Quote Originally Posted by JessicaJelena View Post
    But, as a professional writer and editor, the precision of language is important to me. And "transgender" is really an imprecise, meaningless term.
    I prefer the term Transgender person for this reason. I live in the real world. Most all my friends are GGs (another term that’s only used here).

    You have to know to who you are speaking to. Here is different than the real world. Here pretty much everyone is TG, so they are broken down into smaller sub groups.
    Out in the real world I’m normally the only TG person where ever I am. I really see no need to break it down any farther. To my friends I’m “just Jean”.

  23. #23
    Gold Member Alice B's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jan 2007
    Location
    San Diego
    Posts
    5,310
    I prefer the term "cross dresser" I feel it is far more descriptive than other terms, most of which are non descriptive and not understood by most.

  24. #24
    Aspiring Member kayegirl's Avatar
    Join Date
    Feb 2009
    Location
    West Yorkshire England
    Posts
    826
    Jessica, personally I don't really care what label I'm given, provided that its not used in an insulting or derogatry way. But I agree that at some stage we have to have a label of some description, and that transgender is too wide a term. At this stage on my journey I prefer to think that I am gender fluid, switching easilly, and frequently between female and male persona, and presentation, whatever the situation demands.
    BTW welcome to the forum.

  25. #25
    Exploring NEPA now Cheryl T's Avatar
    Join Date
    Feb 2006
    Location
    NEPA
    Posts
    8,307
    When I was growing up the term was "transvestite" but over time that became corrupted and began to be used mostly in terms of sex. Primarily it seemed used to describe gay males who were dressing for sex with other me.
    Crossdresser began to replace that for those of us for whom the aforementioned term was not appropriate.
    The same happened with transsexual as it became corrupted by the porn industry and it became interchangeable with some not so nice names, Ladyboy and the like.
    Enter Transgender which has become an umbrella term encompassing all of the above in one form or another.

    The problem with "labels" is that they have no specific meaning. They are adopted by a faction and the term is used in their context while another group uses it to mean something else.

    I am happy with Crossdresser although the last decade has had me question whether this is enough for me. I'm still not certain this is the end of my journey and so I currently prefer to use Transgender to describe my feelings and current state within the group as a whole.

    Everyone should be comfortable with how they identify and what "title" they use.
    Last edited by Shelly Preston; 01-30-2019 at 12:47 PM. Reason: we have word filter for a reason

Tags for this Thread

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •  


Check out these other hot web properties:
Catholic Personals | Jewish Personals | Millionaire Personals | Unsigned Artists | Crossdressing Relationship
BBW Personals | Latino Personals | Black Personals | Crossdresser Chat | Crossdressing QA
Biker Personals | CD Relationship | Crossdressing Dating | FTM Relationship | Dating | TG Relationship


The crossdressing community is one that needs to stick together and continue to be there for each other for whatever one needs.
We are always trying to improve the forum to better serve the crossdresser in all of us.

Browse Crossdressers By State