Art vs. Nature

Just recently on the UK’s BBC Radio 4 programme “Woman’s Hour” there has been a Canadian book aired. Now this would not ordinarily get my feelers twitching, were it not for the subject matter. The subject around which the story centres is hermaphroditism. Now this topic would in many cases be considered a bit esoteric and certainly not what I have come to expect from “Auntie” BBC. The book is the story of a child born into the rather closed society of Western Canada – Newfoundland. The child is born “ambiguous” ie in this case both male AND female – a true hermaphrodite.

The drama of that child’s life following “corrective surgery” and what transpires as “Wayne” reaches puberty is something of which I have personal experience. I was born ambiguous as well, though not quite as radically hermaphrodite as “Wayne” and I also underwent “corrective surgery” several times in my infancy and encountered terrible problems at puberty, though I did not find out what had been done until a little later (I was 17).

Looking back and listening to this story, I am surprised to some extent that I lived as long as I have done, considering the almost total ignorance of sexual differentiation that existed at the time I was butchered into being male.

Hmm, that sentence carries a weight of anger – something I’ve been barely aware of until now – but it also makes me realise just how essesntial to me SL has become in reestablishing a contact with a part of me that lay largely dormant for a good many years.

Some folk might say “But surely you had all those years of good life as a man?” Well, no, I didn’t in fact, because something kept nagging at me – my preferences and attitudes were not typically male, though I found out with some embarassment that I was also not homosexual in the sense that I did not want to partner other males. Whether the latter was nature or nurture I still do not know. What I DO know is that SL has afforded me a chance to explore aspects of my personality that are completely closed to me in Real Life – and I find I am a lot more comfortable in that SL role than I ever expected to be.

I freely admit that I did not enter SL to be as I am now, but having said that, I am happier now in that role than I ever was in my RL roles. Something that those who seek to trivialise SL would do well to ponder on.

~ by Ayesha Askham-Ezvalt on June 28, 2011.

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