Why I Wouldn’t Press The Button

23 September 2023 01:21:53 EDT - Nicky@Sylv

The Button

If you’ve been on the queer side of the internet or been in queer or trans circles before, you’ve likely heard of the button test. The button test is a question typically asked to gague if someone is trans. It goes as follows:

If you could press a button that would make you a boy/girl instantly, would you press it?

Your average binary trans person would likely answer “yes”. However, we* wouldn’t. The reasons for this are varied across our* system, but the main ones are:

Moreover, we* collectively agree that gender is a group of facets of identity that has its corresponding norms and aesthetics. It’s more complicated for us*, because we* live above society’s rigid, binary definition of gender. Additionally, we* all experience it differently with differing levels of dysphoria. This means we* exhibit it differently at different times.

Gender Dysphoria As a Diagnosis

Sometimes, I (Nicky) call myself a “fake girl”. In the exclusionist’s eye, this is true; however, in a queer inclusionist’s philosophical sense, I’m a girl who is also a boy. And, I don’t really experience dysphoria. Here’s the problem with the Gender Dysphoria diagnosis: it gatekeeps people like me (Nicky) from gender-affirming care. We* are a minor (Yes, I know. Minors on the internet can’t have opinions!), so our* only hope of getting HRT is through a gender dysphoria diagnosis or through DIY. Although I (Nicky) and many of my headmates don’t experience—much, if any at all—gender dysphoria, we* have lied about our* new name, pronouns, and gender. Well, not exactly. We*‘ve only disclosed to most others in real life that we* are a trans woman.

Guilt-tripping The Nonbinary Youth

It’s this feeling of guilt that appears when one who is forced to lie about their identity that all fronts of society push on young adults and children: specifically, the nonbinary youth.

It’s your fault for not being a real transgender!

…is exactly what me and others perceive authority figures to believe. There’s a certain crushing propriety for one to conform to a gender, its customs, and its expressions, even in trans and queer circles, and I have had enough.

Eradicate The Gender Dysphoria Diagnosis

Through the pathologization of the non-standard gender experience (transness, nonbinary identity, xenogenders, etc.), we are creating a society that is unreceptive to nonbinary people. What the doctors and medical professionals have done is classify “gender dysphoria” based on the binary gender system and based on arbitrary, often rudimentary cisgender concepts. Thusly, I do not believe the gender dysphoria being a diagnosis is appropriate. While its existence may be a boon for the binary, it is the opposite for everyone else. I find it truly hard to believe that this is to “protect the youth,” or to “protect the cis.” Something about that premise is offputting.