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No! You can’t use that word!

No! You can’t use that word! published on 2 Comments on No! You can’t use that word!

Do you have body integrity identity disorder? Well, that’s neither here nor there, since I really don’t care about your BIID.

I do care, however, when you start calling yourselves “transabled” and organizing your whole identities around the supposition that your experiences are analogous to those of people who are trans or who have disabilities.

First of all, you don’t get to use the word “transabled.” By doing so, you appropriate the terminology of the trans rights movement and disability rights movement. You dismiss the lived experiences and struggles of trans and/or disabled people by using their vocabulary as your metaphor. You’re therefore objectifying and dehumanizing trans and/or disabled people. You’re perpetuating discrimination and prejudice against these populations. Go find your own terms.

Second of all, neither do you get to claim that your oppression is like that of trans and/or disabled people. When you are murdered for your state of being and society finds your killer[s] understandable, justifiable, sympathetic and symptomatic of an entire social program that dehumanizes people like you with the goal of eliminating them, then we might be able to talk. Otherwise, you need to understand that being different does not axiomatically entail being oppressed.

[Prompted by a similar takedown on Womanist Musings.]


Thanks for this because it has pinpointed for me what bothers me about this! They don’t need a fancy new term. They’re not “transabled,” they’re just plain old ordinary differently abled/ disabled/ however one chooses to phrase it. Mental illness is a disability. Since, you know, there’s evidence to suggest there’s actually something going on in the wiring of their brains that makes them want to reject their own flipping limbs, to the point it causes them distress? Yeah that’s straight up a disability, there’s no need to try and pretend it’s some other special snowflake experience that it isn’t when it’s clearly, you know, a struggle enough in its own right.

Oppression isn’t edgy or cool, it’s horrible, and very real, there’s no need to try to claim it or take it on or even, worst case scenario with these folks, fetishize or desire it. Don’t reject the stigma of mental illness, which is also real, in favor of wanting to claim the stigma of trans or physically less abled folks (or both), just because you feel the latter is easier to deal with or more acceptable to society or to you, or cooler, or whatever. That’s just not how it works. Basically they’re insulting transfolk, disabled folk, and those with mental illness (the label they seem to feel they should reject rather than embrace and maybe, gosh, I dunno, draw some actual support from?) all in one offensive swoop.

It feels like flavors of pro-ana somehow, in ways I can’t articulate but have to do with the feelings I’m expressing here.


I have the crazy too. We’re not so bad, honest.

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