Well, I'm absolutely exhausted by finals already, how about you? I've been trying to write a complicated, personal post about how I related to the female persona that I still live as much of the time, but, um, it's complicated! And personal! And I am absolutely exhausted by finals already! So instead, I thought I'd take a moment to define the way that I use some trans-related vocabulary, and open the post up to questions again, since there seemed to be a lot of interest in that last time.
So, here's how I use these words:
Cisgendered: basically, not transgendered. Your gender identity matches up with your genitals without assistance.
Passing: This can be a problematic concept. To say that a transman is able to "pass for" a man would suggest that he isn't a man, which is just blatantly transphobic. So, I tend to think of it as passing for a cisgendered man. In practical terms it's pretty much the same-- the idea is that people don't know you're trans-- but I find "passing for cis" much less problematic.
Closeted: Because I am a transman, I am closeted when I tell people I'm a woman. Being in the closet means lying.
Out: Because I am a transman, I am out when I tell people I'm a transman. Being out means telling the truth.
Stealth: Because I am a transman, I am stealth when I tell people I'm a man. Being stealth also means telling the truth. I kind of don't like the word stealth, because it sounds a little pejorative but I don't think it's necessary at all to tell people you're trans once you've transitioned. I have a problem with being closeted, because I have a problem with lying, but being stealth is totally different. Trans lurkers out there: do you know any terms for this that are less judgmental-sounding?
And now you know enough to learn something new about me: I am out as much as possible because I don't pass for cis well enough to be stealth, and I hate the closet!
I hereby open the comments section up to any and all questions once more. Also, if you want to ask me something personally (or if you're in any way gender-non-conforming and just want to hang out!!) please feel free to email me at lawrenceevalyn at gmail dot com. I'd love to hear from you!