WOMEN
11/17/2014 09:26 am ET Updated Nov 17, 2014

What Street Harassment Is Like For Me As A Trans Woman

herbertschroer via Getty Images

Being harassed on the street by strange men is something most women are used to dealing with on a near constant basis. Trans women are no exception. It seems just as bad when we "pass," and can be even worse, and definitely different, when we "fail" to "pass." These are my experiences.

I've never not known overtly gendered harassment. As a child and as a teenager, it was heavily based on hatred and disapproval of femininity. At its core, it was misogyny, but tweaked towards a "non-female" target. I was gendered as male, but I was gendered, at best, as "broken male" "female like male" and so forth. So all of the abuse and harassment I received was certainly gendered. What it wasn't was sexual. That's an experience as a trans girl that I did not have, because only rarely did clothing style, hair style, etc portray me as a young woman. I am beyond glad that I never had to be 14 and deal with a 40 year old making suggestive comments. However, that would change when I started to attend university.

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