So I am gonna write a serious post here, not a long one but serious.

I was relentlessly bombarded a few months back by a friend of a friend who as it so happens, is a major TERF.

She was unhappy that I pointed out that JK Rowling is not a very nice person in regards to her attitude towards transgender women.

The tile of this post is a cleaned up version of the questions she initially put to me, trust me it was a very nasty way of saying it.

And one of her final tirades before I blocked her, was that the only reason I wasn’t transgender was because I would make a fuck ugly woman.

And let’s be clear here, I would absolutely be a fuck ugly woman, but still, that comment got right under my skin.

I spent a good couple of months questioning what it meant to be a man, if I even was a man. I hate that a TERF and a troll actually got under my skin like that.

Anyway, basically I came to the conclusion that I am a man, and to me being a man isn’t about how hairy my chest is, or how strong I am, how many birds I pull, how much I can bench etc.

But rather it was up to me to define how what being a man means to me. To me, being a man means sticking up for the under trodden, it means standing up to bullies, it means setting an example of how to be a good person for my nephews and nieces, and it means just enjoying my life and helping others to live their truth.

So why am I telling you this, well at the end of the day the whole argument came down to me, defending my trans friends, and I have, a rather large number of them.

I don’t care that they are trans, they tell me they were born in the wrong body, then fine, I will absolutely accept their true identify, refuse to deadname them and make sure I work my arse off the get their pronouns correct.

Trans people aren’t out to get special privileges, they aren’t trying to get into spaces reserved for the opposite gender, they just want to live their lives in peace and happiness.

Of all the trans people I know, most of them given the chance would have chosen not to be trans, to face the discrimination, abuse and bigotry is not something I think anyone would willingly choose.

No, they were born that way, and as a cisgendered person, it’s my responsibility to be welcoming to accept them and to be ready to stand up and defend them when others won’t.

I am not writing this expecting any brownie points, I know I have my blind spots, especially with my non-binary friends. The concept of non-binary is something I have trouble understanding, but just because I do my get it, doesn’t make it any less real. And I will make sure I do my best to get the right pronouns and address them by their preferred forms of address.

This song by Sunday Comes Afterwards helps to summarise how I work to figure it out.

In the long run, I was very wrong about my ideas of gender as a young man, I thought the way to be a man was very different to how I feel now, I was so caught up in the idea that I had to be hyper masculine like my dad, that I forgot to access what I could bring to the table of manliness.

What I bring is less masculinity and more compassion and what would probably be described as girly feminine traits, and there is nowt wrong with that, because us men could use those things I think.

Takes all sorts of people to make this crazy world we live in, and when it comes to gender, I realise from my own questioning, that it’s not exactly a binary thing, and sometimes, you aren’t put in the right end of the spectrum.

So guys, when someone asks me again, why do you white knight for trans folk, I do so because it’s the right thing to do, and I would do the same for any of my friends.

And really, don’t we just want people to be happy in themselves, and trust me, even with all the negatives (mostly caused by bigoted cis folk), trans people are happier when they are allowed to be who they are supposed to be.

And let’s face it, if the ayatollahs of Iran can recognise the validity of transgender people, then I think the rest of us can as well.