Whatever walk of life you come from you are likely to encounter some resistance to your new found (or newly open) gender critical thinking. As most of us arrive at this viewpoint from a place of feminism and compassion we have most likely surrounded ourselves by people who have been exposed to a number of lies regarding gender, peddled by the Trans Activist Lobby or Liberal Feminists. These people are likely to be shocked at your viewpoint.
- Embrace your allies. Join meetup groups, Facebook groups, attend events. It can feel lonely if your immediate friends and family don’t ‘get’ it, even if they don’t disagree. The radical feminists that I’ve met have become my close friends – if you agree on this you’ll likely find you’ve got common views on other issues.
- Be wary of social media. Whilst quietly discussing this issue with family, friends, colleagues, you may find it easy to have a civilised discussion. However, do not expect the same reaction on social media. Remember that everything you write on social media is permanent, even a deleted post could have been screenshotted. Don’t write anything that you will later regret. Nice people can become very aggressive on social media, so be prepared for your reserved acquaintances to suddenly call you a TERF, transphobe, or bigot.
- Be aware of gas lighting. Sometimes being gender critical can cause you to doubt your own sanity. We know the definition of Man and Woman, we know that gender roles are stereotypes not descriptions of innate qualities and yet TRAs are telling us the opposite.
- Don’t expect support from everyone. Most of us have lost a few friends over this. Hopefully not close friends but be prepared for the worst. Something which can become very frustrating is the silence from people who agree with you. Remember that you have chosen this battle knowing the consequences and some people may not be in a place to openly support you, don’t resent them for that.
- Avoid burnout. Campaigning on this issue can be emotionally as well as physically exhausting. Don’t push yourself to attend every talk, every meet up, or join in every Twitter debate. Do what you can achieve within reason, save enough energy (and time of work!) for the most important tasks.
- Try to preserve normality. This is a crucial time, women’s rights are under attack now more than any other time in recent history. However, it’s probably best not to have an apocalyptic view on this – we will win. We are encountering extremists, the vast majority of the population will agree that there is a difference between transwomen and natural born women. Once the masses find out the significance of what is happening this whole battle will become a lot easier.
- Keep time for yourself. Read novels, exercise, meditate, listen to music – enjoy life. Embrace distractions. Preserve your mental health, it’s important for your wellbeing and your role as an activist. If you do struggle with mental health issues you can always talk to your GP or care coordinator about this. They are not paid to judge you for your political opinions, they will help look after your help.
- Remember the Suffragettes! When women demanded votes they were on the fringes of society, they were often disowned by their family and friends. Coming out as a gender critic you may find resistance but if you genuinely believe in what you are fighting for you can be proud to be bravely going against the grain, making history by saving and progressing rights for women.