So, you’re trying to figure out if you’re a t-girl or a genderfluid person.
The nature of the best evidence is introspective. A secondary source might be observations by observant and open-minded people.
Ironically, your looks are NOT evidence. You could look like John Rambo and still be a t-girl based on what makes you a t-girl: a female brain structure. There’s a lot of confusion on that point, such as t-girls being called cross-dressers by superficial people who are themselves unclear on the best available definition. One gentleman voiced to me that he doesn’t consider a t-girl to be a t-girl until she’s had a boob job. Hello, superficiality.
Anyway, as to the nature of qualifying evidence:
The problem with the first type, introspective evidence, is that most of the think-like-a-female evidence is missing. The typical t-girl grew up with everyone, including herself, trying to convince her she’s male. She probably grew up being excruciatingly embarrassed at every emotion that told her she’s reacting like a girl, and she probably ended up denying, negating or downplaying any such introspective evidence. She probably went out of her way to hide that she might be a girl mentally.
For example, I suntanned for hours on end without protection in the African summer sun, trying to get a gnarly skin like an old sailor in the hope I’d look more male. Anything to make me somehow be more male, I sincerely embraced. I chose male role models. I embraced automobiles and did crazy macho stuff like lifting engine blocks out of the engine compartment by hand (don’t be too impressed, they were 4-cylinders). My circle of t-girl friends for the most part chose VERY macho professions: police officers, Marines and other branches of the Military, truck drivers, etc.
Admitting our female emotions to ourselves was contrary to that agenda. So if you finally realize there’s enough evidence to make you think you’re a girl brain-wise, then surprise, there has been much more evidence throughout the years but you, yourself, threw that away. If the relatively tiny surviving amount of evidence is enough to maybe tip the scale, then imagine what all such evidence over the span of your life would have done. Wouldn’t it be like dumping 10,000 pounds on the “female-brain-structure” part of the decision-making scale?
In addition to a t-girl dismissing and ignoring a lot of evidence, which is how such evidence tends to be destroyed, there’s another factor too: repression. Repression can nip feelings in the bud. Let’s use the example of a male homophobic person seeing a hot gay person. The immediate emotion is sexual arousal — but the homophobe douses that so immediately with self-anger and self-hatred (that he externalizes and aims at whomever he found arousing) that the blip of arousal is ultra-short-lived and overwhelmed by much anger and hatred instead. Not that homophobes are introspective — but even if one was, he’d find it a lot easier to remember the anger than the arousal … especially if he’s actively trying to suppress, downplay and negate the feeling of arousal.
The problem with repression is that it works well (for a while anyway). So if you grew up as a repressed t-girl, which adjective describes me as well as many t-girls I know, then much evidence got snuffed out in that way.
That repression might be self-induced due to embarrassment, guilt, shame, wanting to belong and be accepted socially — all powerful factors. To the extent that such “you sure react like a girl” evidence was nevertheless observed by anyone else who pointed it out, that probably made the t-girl much more likely to experience negativity. Remember, in guy culture, the phrase “you’re acting like a girl” is a grave insult. Probably that reinforced her dedication to suppressing and hiding such feelings.
So as to introspective evidence: Most of it, you destroyed by
– denial, and
As to observations by others, first some background about me as an example. When I was eight or nine, an adult did something that involved my genitals and his. I was a very unenthused, disgusted participant in the interaction. Right afterwards, I went to my mother to tell on the man, but I didn’t have enough of a case to convince my mother that regardless of how it maybe wasn’t that big a deal in the grand scheme of that social circle, e.g., it’s not as if the person was trying to rape me … for ME it was huge, life-changing, traumatic event. I hated that man forever. I also hated my mom downplaying it. As an adult, I now understand her reasoning given the context, and so I’m no longer bitter.
Regardless, that event changed me forever. My sense of “it’s basically a safe world” got instantly replaced by “I’m safe nowhere — better take care of myself because I’ve just seen I can’t trust anyone else. I’m on my own so I’d better take total control and responsibility, and proceed accordingly.” It’s like I used to be a passenger in an airplane, reassured that a competent pilot was driving, and then I realized the cockpit was empty. If I didn’t fly that plane, I’d perish. That was much to realize, for someone only eight or nine years old. Even so, I survived, and more: the decision (to live as an intellectually independent being) empowered me to trust nobody. And so all my feelings about being a t-girl, I shared with nobody while I was growing up. And I do mean nobody.
So when, many years later, as an adult, I came out to my mom as a t-girl, she reasoned that a mother knows her own child well and she pointed out that maybe I’m mistaken as to having a female brain structure, because she saw very little evidence of me being a t-girl. She did, however, see a mountain of examples of me acting in a male way. Of course, she was right. The evidence I hid from her and the evidence I held up for her to see … these totally misled her, as I’d intended. It’s like the Charlize Theron movie, Head in the Clouds. She plays the role of a superficial, Nazi-friendly bimbo so well that (spoiler alert) nobody except her high-up contacts in British Intelligence knew she was a brilliant and effective member of the French resistance, getting secrets from the high-up Nazi officers as pillow talk, and passing them to the Brits. When the Nazis fell, the local French mob descended on her and wanted to punish her for siding with the Nazis, and she had painted so convincing a false picture that it was non-viable for her to convince them that the exact opposite was in fact the case. And so it was with me. Those who knew me superficially were amazed I’d been a woman all along. I can’t blame them: I’d hidden it so well.
In my defense, this hadn’t been conniving dishonesty. I had honestly thought I was a male with a screw loose and maybe if I kept repressing my female side it’d eventually die off.
How was I so effective? It’s a nature-nurture thing. Yes, some behavior is learned. But some of it IS genetic. A person with a female brain structure will think like a female. And one thing females are VERY good at is: the field of social nuances. For example, we tend to pick up on little vital issues that most guys would be utterly clueless about. For a great example of this, see the movie Legally Blonde.
If you task a female with understanding and functioning effectively in a particular culture, then she is much more likely to succeed than a male would. Ironically, that includes male culture. For example, all other things being equal, if you tasked a female with hiding in plain sight by assimilating male culture, she’d probably succeed. If you tasked a male with hiding in plain sight by assimilating female culture, he’d probably fail. It’d take a very unusual male to pull that off (and a really great actor to even play such a part, like Hugo Weaving in Cloud Atlas or Dustin Hoffman in Tootsie or Robin Williams in Mrs. Doubtfire).
And so falls away a major objection such as “but you fitted so well in male culture.” Yes, I did. But that wasn’t because I was male. I was a female, and socially astute. Besides, I was convinced my life and safety depended on my acting convincingly. And so I was highly motivated. For example, when I was 14, I went camping once, for days on end, with more than a dozen boys a year older than I. There was no adult for many miles around. (Dumb idea, I know). Had they discovered I’m a t-girl I am 100% certain I’d have not come back from that trip alive. And so I did things that would out-male the males, socially. For example, it was considered cool to smoke. So, I outsmoked the rest of them. I also had a very macho style of puffing on the cigarette while using my hands minimally, letting it hang from my lip. I’d also figured out how to draw the smoke into my nose and blow it out my nose without inhaling. And I smoked three packs a day. Yep, I “out-maled” them (and yes, I later felt miserably sick from smoking that much.)
And so, if there’s not much observation by others as to you reacting like a girl, it might be because you consciously eliminated much of that too. But probably, observant females who have been really close to you, day after day, might well have noticed much.
So, by the time you start noticing a pretty darn large pile of evidence suggesting you’re maybe a t-girl, then the good news is that you’re probably only looking at a tiny percentage of the whole.