You all know what the glass ceiling is, right? But what about the cotton ceiling – and are cis lesbians and straight men who don’t find transwomen sexually attractive therefore transphobic? Here are my thoughts.
The dating game is a bit of an eye-opener when you’re a transwoman (or at least, in my case, a transwoman in waiting).
I’ve joined a few dating sites and apps in the past few weeks. I’ll write more about my experiences in another post, but it’s fair to say that I’ve had a lot more success with my trans lesbian dating profile than I did years ago when I had a regular straight guy one.
But what about this so-called cotton ceiling? Well, the “cotton” refers to the fabric of knickers – I assume the gusset. Think of it as a barrier. Wikipedia says:
Cotton ceiling is the situation of trans women or trans men of being excluded from female and gay spaces — specifically within the dating scene, but also society in general.
I think it’s more widely accepted that the cotton ceiling refers to trans lesbians being shunned by cis lesbians when it comes to sex. “Thou shalt not pass.”
Do a Google image search for the cotton ceiling and, as well as some lovely cotton-covered lampshades, you’ll see that the TERFs have been busy with their bile and their meme generators.
Here are a few examples.
Yes, because all males (transwomen included, natch) are completely homophobic towards lesbians and think they need a good dose of Christian conversion therapy right away. But transphobia? Oh yeah, that’s fair game!
What absolute twaddle. Then there’s this:
As usual, it becomes clear that the TERFs’ “we need to talk” mantra actually means “we hate trans people and hope they all die a slow and painful death, because anyone with a penis – whether a cis man or a transwoman – is naturally a rapist in waiting.
I keep coming back to my argument that TERFs must have had a terrible experience with an abusive man. And while I’d never defend abuse from anyone, that’s no excuse to start abusing other people online, like teenage keyboard warriors.
Hey ho, haters gonna hate. Then we have this one, which is a bit more tricky.
And I suppose that really depends on whether you see trans women as women or not. Naturally, TERFs don’t – all trans women are just playing dress-up as part of their “autogynephilia fetish”.
But while they’re still living in the Dark Ages, this is 2018 and most people in civilised Western societies accept that trans women are indeed women.
So if a transwoman is a woman and fancies other women, that makes her a lesbian, regardless of what’s between her legs – doesn’t it? It’s just that she’s a trans lesbian rather than a cis one.
“Transwomen demand sex from lesbians!” writes one TERF online (I won’t post a link – Google it if you want to). No. Nobody trans is demanding sex with lesbians any more than anyone cis.
What the TERFs can’t understand is that sexuality, like gender, is on a spectrum. So some people fancy men, some fancy women. Some fancy trans people, too. Some fancy non-binary people. Some fancy everyone. Some fancy no-one.
It’s not a case of being gay or straight anymore. Even bisexual is becoming an outdated term. People are becoming more liberated and realising that it’s OK to fancy who the f*ck they like. Hence terms like pansexual, polysexual, sapiosexual and sexually openminded.
Which brings me to my final point. If a cis lesbian isn’t sexually attracted to a trans lesbian purely because she’s transgender, does that make the cis lesbian transphobic?
This is a point that can be debated long and hard but I asked the question on Twitter and didn’t get a single reply.
My personal view is that no, it doesn’t – it’s just that some people have a certain preference over which genitalia they’d prefer to play with on their partner.
Same goes for straight guys. One transgender activists writes that “straight men should work through non-attraction to transgender women”.
So are cis lebsians and straight cis men being transphobic just because they don’t fancy transgender women – let’s be honest, just because they’d rather their partner had a vagina they were born with rather than a cock, or a vagina created through surgery?
Not in my book. It’s not really that different to someone who doesn’t want to have sex with a pensioner or an obese person. Does that make them ageist or “fattist”? No, it’s just that different things float different people’s boats.
If a “gentleman prefers blondes”, it doesn’t automatically make him a hater of brunettes and redheads. No.
For me personally, I like to smooch with women, whether they’re transwomen or cis women. I couldn’t give a monkey’s what’s between their legs so long as I fancy them.
I don’t generally fancy butch cis lesbians, but that doesn’t make me homophobic towards them just because there’s no sexual attraction.
It’s just that different people like different things. And there are plenty of people out there – including cis women and cis men – who adore transwomen.
Because of that, I quite like being a special snowflake! But I fully appreciate that I’m not going to be everyone’s cup of tea.
I would love to hear your thoughts in comments below.