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337 pages, Hardcover
First published January 12, 2021
They are together, and miles from each other, their thoughts turning to themselves, then turning to the baby, each in her own way contemplating how her tenuous rendition of womanhood has become dependent upon the existence of this little person, who is not yet, and yet may not be.
Of course, her first trans daughter—Ames—had also been her lesbian lover. Amy. A daughter whom Reese had raised to love Reese well as a wife, with all the strange dynamics in power that entails, the dynamics that are so confusingly sexy and painful and satisfying and awkward that the rest of society has an incest taboo to avoid them. When her daughter/lover detransitioned into her son, he weirdly put her through all the stages of anger, rage, and betrayal that Reese had heard from countless other parents when their daughters transitioned for the first time. So was it any wonder that when Ames popped back in her life, he did so with the intention of making her a mother? Reese had caught Amy so young in her womanhood, in early pliancy, and motherhood had always been a code to their love. Not just two women in love, but mother and daughter.
You laid out a number of options for me to choose from, and the thing is, honestly—what if we had them all? I want my career, I want to build and commit with you, and a child is a lovely time-tested way for that. Meanwhile, you want this woman Reese as your family, and she wants a baby and respect and purpose as a mother; and my mom wants to be a grandma; and you and I could be good to a child, I think, and we all want it to be something redemptive.
In Ames’s formulation, trans women knew what trans women were, they knew how to be, but they didn’t know how to do. All the intra-trans fights online, all the arguments with cis people: All of it was just to define what it meant to be a trans woman; to say what she was. But when you’re a trans woman, there’s almost nothing out there on how to actually live. In his last year of living as a woman ….. Ames stopped being so angry with how cis people treated trans people and he started growing sad and contemplative about how trans women treat each other
you don't get to choose who to fuck, you get to choose from among those who want to fuck you