My period story is that I wish I had one.
I'm a transwoman. This means I was mid-sexed as male upon being born and raised as a boy, socialized as male, with all the horror that entails.
I was raised by my mother and three sisters. All my cousins were girls on the maternal side. I grew up sitting down in the bathroom, putting the seat down, taking baths sometimes, and wondering when my breasts would grow.
As silly as this sounds, I really did think I was broken when puberty hit. Things went crazy, and when I tried to discuss this with my mother, she sent me to therapy.
Now, on the bottom end of 50, I have been living as a woman for six years. I have raised a beautiful daughter, meaning I stayed at home and did the mom thing for the first eight years of her life. I loved it all.
But I won't get to carry a child. Ever. I keep offering to take the uterus and tubes and ovaries from someone who doesn't want them, and I'm not joking when I say it.
I get told over and over that I don't want to have a period, and I keep saying that I do.
I won't know what it is like to carry a child, to have my milk flow for them. I cannot have an experience that EVERY woman has (unless they are like me) that seems to bring them closer to each other. Something so common, i can't ever have. And many "real women" use that same thing as a way to discriminate and exclude me from the very things that I would give my soul for.
I know there is pain. I know there are problems. I know it is a lot of embarrassment and mood swings. But I would still take it if it meant that everyone would see me as and treat me as the girl I have always been instead of the misshapen half and half that I see in the mirror.
Joy Phillip will be 50 in January. She has one daughter, and worked as an IT specialist for years. Now she is a housewife while her wife works. Joy has been married for 26 years to a wonderful person. Liberal and feminist, hoping we can all work together for the greatest common good.