Feminisim as a trans woman and impostor syndrome

by | Mar 8, 2024 | General Thoughts, Trans* Topics

(Picture credit: Cienpies Design&Communication – Cienpies Design – stock.adobe.com)

Hello my beautiful souls. Today it’s international women’s day so I thought I’d write a litte bit about being a feminist as a trans woman.
As you can probably imagine, it is hard enough to fight for womens’ equality in our society which is still infused with patriarchal views way too much. But being a trans woman adds even more issues to the topic. Namely something called the impostor syndrome.
As usual, when I talk about things like this, I only share my personal views and opinions and do not claim scientific accuracy. So if you want to dig deeper into the topics I talk about, there is plenty of scientific material on the web, and wikipedia is always a good starting point for your research.

In general, impostor syndrome is described as a psychological phenomenon in which people doubt their skills, talents, or accomplishments and have a persistent internalized fear of being exposed as frauds.

As such, trans people are more likely to be affected by impostor syndrome than the general population, especially so if you didn’t have the privilege of transitioning
early in your life; mostly due to the fact that society still puts that stigma on us. I don’t think I need to go into detail here, but being victim to hate and invalidation, being called predators or “men who just want to get into female dressing rooms” or being portrayed as comic relief characters in media and general lacking consciousness of the general population about trans persons can really be devastating. Over time, some of that hate and misunderstanding can take hold in the heads of people, even trans people themselves. And then it can happen that – even though you know you are valid – you start to question yourself. Especially if you’re struggling with low self esteem and experience invalidation, these dark thoughts of self doubt can make you feel like you’re actually not valid, not good enough, not a “real woman”. And then, things like speaking out for womens’ rights and equality can make you feel like an impostor, like you don’t really have a right to speak out for equality and point out sexism and patriarchic behaviour.

This is of course bullshit for two reasons. First of all, feminism and fighting patriarchy is not exclusively something only women can and should care about. Discrimination is always bad for our society, and feminism should not be viewed seperated from other forms of discrimination. This is in general something referred to as intersectional feminism, something I will probably write about more in a different post. But back to the immediate topic: Nonbinary persons and even men can suffer under patriarchic stereotypes and structures. Ask any man who has ever been called “too soft” or been shamed for having interests that differ from what is generally called “manly behaviour” And even if a man is not directly suffering from repression, he can and should still speak out for equality and things like fair payment and against male abuse. Standing by idly while injustice is happening all around just because it doesn’t immediately concern you is kind of like seeing a heavily bleeding person and not calling an ambulance in my opinion. In other words, there is absolutely no reason why only women should speak up for their rights.

The second reason why impostor syndrome in trans women is bullshit (once again sorry my nonbinary and transmasc friends for speaking only about the transfemme view again, I know impostor syndrome can be even more excruciating for transmasc and nonbinary persons at times), is that trans women are women. Period. NO amount of transphobic hate, both from men and TERFs can change that fact. Like I already said so often: being trans is nothing one chooses. It is something, one IS. We are born this way, we didn’t ask for being trans. And just because our bodies developed differently does not make us any less of a woman. We are not to be seperated from cis women, because of our bodies. Phrases like biological women, real women, etc in order to seperate us from cis women are just patrirachic bullshit once more, we are just as biological (there is tons of biological evidence about human development, both on the truth about genders not being as binary as most people believe and about gender identity differing from form the body development), we are just as real.

To sum up: I am a proud woman, fighting for equality and women’s rights and please my beautiful souls, no matter if you’re cis, trans, man, woman, nobinary or genderfluid, do so too, not just today, but every day. I firmly believe that we can and will change society to the better and build a fair and equal society for future generations.
Love, your galpal Val


  1. Hazel

    Thank you for sharing I really needed to hear this.

    • Valerie

      You’re most welcome dear 🙂


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