Trigger Warning : Rape and Sexual Assault, Abuse (physical, mental, emotional, verbal, sexual), Transphobia.
I am a transgender woman. A human being. Why is it so hard for the vast majority of this archaic land of ours to understand and accept? Some people said I deserve all that comes my way. To be treated with contempt. I should accept regular bouts of sexual harassment in order for me to become a man. Apparently, to the ignorant among us, sexual harassment should not exist in the dictionary of a transwoman. We are sex mad. Men talk to me about sex, because they view it as chat between 2 men, male banter, even though they know I am a transwoman.
As an 18-year-old graduate, I would take to the streets every morning between 5am - 7am to jog. I have a passion for keeping fit. My parents advised against going out alone so early in the morning, but stubborn me ignored their advice, and a fool I was for not listening. One morning, I noticed 4 men in a red car acting suspiciously. Instinct told me that I needed to get as far away from them as possible. I made my way to a small alley, thinking they would be unable to follow me. Fool me. 3 men climbed from the car and approached me. My heart pounded against the inside of my chest. They reeked of alcohol. Pouncing on me, they threw me to the ground and slapped my face repeatedly, telling me to shut up. I fought as much as I could, but they were strong. Pinned to the ground by 2 of them, whilst the other put his hand around me and sniffed my neck and body. I was being molested and I felt extremely violated. The smell of the alcohol is sickly. I was now trouser less. I kicked out and screamed. It had no effect. The roads were deserted. Thankfully, I managed to escape. Running towards home, with only my shirt and underwear to protect my modesty. I was bruised, but luckily, still alive. I honestly believed I would die at the hands of those brutes. Yet, I never dared tell my parents the truth about what happened. I told them I had been robbed.
Everyone loves sex. It is natural. But in the minds of many, transwomen are quite simply sex objects. Sex toys to be used and abused. But we are normal human beings, with a beating hearts, and feelings.
Yet, sexual harassment is a regular occurrence in my life.
As a 22-year-old I worked in a pet store. One day, a regular customer (Malay) came into the store like usual. Normally, my boss would be by my side, but this time I was alone. I thought I could handle this customer. 'WRONG'. He had the look of a “Bomoh” (Witch Doctor), literally every finger ringed, and talismans hanging around his neck. A creepy man indeed. One you want to keep at a distance. He began questioning me.
“Are you a girl or a boy?”. I ignored him.
His voice raised, he yelled, “Hey, I’m talking with you”. Once again, I ignored him. I didn't want to make a scene.
“If I see you dressed up again as a female, I am gonna rip off your clothes in public and let everyone see you naked,” he shouted.
I wasn't going to let him humiliate me further, so replied, “I am not a Muslim, I can do whatever I want.”.
He lunged at me, but thankfully my colleague appeared and stopped him. Other customers stood by and let this encounter escalate. Why? Because I am a transwoman. I may have been nervous, but I will never let anyone humiliate my dignity and pride.
Another occasion. After work, and walking home from the train station, the same man (Malay) followed me twice. As I reached home and turned to close the door, there he was, standing there. He asked if I could perform a service for him. Afraid, shivering, I slammed the door shut and bolted it from inside. I called my housemate, pleading for him to come home asap. Can you begin to imagine what you would feel if the same incident happened to you, or a member of your family?
One weekend, in the afternoon after work, I was walking back home, and a guy (Indian) followed me in his car from the train station. I noticed him. I tried to avoid him, but he still caught up with me. He asked if I was a girl or a boy, and if I would perform a service for him. He said people like me do love sex. I ignored him and increased my walking speed to reach home quickly.
He yelled, “Why are you not talking, or replying to me. I will look for you”.
I was so nervous, I ran. Sometimes I wonder, do I deserve to be treated this way purely because I am a transwoman?
June 2018. I was obsessed with “Pokémon Go” and there was a raid nearby my grandma house. A guy (Chinese) followed me. I began walking back towards my grans house. He asked if I could “Blow” him. I ran into my grandma house. He waited outside for a few hours.
Nov 2018, I was in “Grab Car” heading for hiking. Throughout the journey the Malay driver kept asking me about the taste of cum. Do I prefer “Hisap Rokok” or “Hisap Something That Is Hard”. "Hisap" means suck. He even said, there is something growing in his pants and it is getting tight. I tried to ignore his words, but he turned his face around and called my name. He even said, “Species like me are good at performing body massage”. He asked if I could perform a massage or not for him.
I know I am more fortunate than a lot of other transgender people, but my life stories will definitely amaze you. Transgender may be against someone’s belief, but do we deserve to be treated this way? Are we just a sex object to them? An object to be humiliated? No, we are transgender women, and we deserve respect and common decency.