A recent argument saw voices at odds on the subject of transwidows. For those who haven’t heard the term before, it’s the women who were married to men who came out of the closet as ‘transgender’ later on in the marriage or relationship.
Not all trans people are abusive – that needs to be made clear here and now. However, the landscape has changed drastically over the last few years and most of those who now self-identify as ‘trans’ are no more than fetishists. I don’t want to go any further in explaining about the menz though because they’ve already had more than enough airplay in all of this.
It’s pretty typical to hear a story where the woman had been in a relationship with such a bloke and had suffered immense psychological and emotional abuse as a consequence of the bloke wanting to be out and proud. For some of the women there will be a history within the relationship of the man being selfish, mildly controlling, and often difficult. Many of the women get no warning of their partner’s inclinations. It’ll start off as a suggestion that he wants to wear knickers to spice things up a bit, quickly progress onto wearing make-up – it’ll all be done in the bedroom. Wife won’t always be comfortable but will generally go along with it because she’s under the impression it’s a necessity to save the marriage. Plenty of these husbands are incredibly manipulative and this inevitably leaves the woman in an awful position. Gaslighting is common. Threats of suicide are common. Many of these men are also touted as stunning and brave by others who know them both personally and online whilst the wife is more than likely aware of the cries of bigot and transphobe she’ll face if she so much as hints at her own sense of grief or embarrassment. Fuck, there’s some who go to extraordinary lengths to appease their partners – at least as far as taking on their newly-claimed ‘lesbian’ status. Many wives are unfortunately reliant on their husbands for financial reasons and the threat of poverty is real. Not only would they be putting themselves on the breadline, they’re often taking kids with them too. Society, despite the fact it’s now 2020, is still more interested in shaming and disparaging single mothers and most women are painfully aware of this fact.
Some men do tell their wives early on in the relationship and generally follow it up with – but it’s not a problem anymore, I won’t do it now because I have you. And variations on that theme. Most wives are caught off-guard completely and are initially unaware of the psychology in play. Unless you’ve spent time researching you are unlikely to be aware of the levels of emotional toxicity in the subject as a whole – some of these women have to actually face that shit day in and day out. And yes, some women do leave straight away – for whatever reasons, but it doesn’t make them stronger or braver for doing so. Some of us are simply better equipped for dealing with adversity. We’re less inclined to give a shit for material consequences and prioritise emotional well-being above all else. That being said, age does need to be taken into account here. Even I can see it’s very different to strike out on your own in your twenties than to make the attempt in your forties.
Anyway, if you want to know more about why they don’t just leave, there are three separate threads here from Mumsnet with far too many contributions from the women who are directly affected by this issue. Read what they have to say and then have a think about it, and try to keep in mind how women are demonised by society at large for not being supportive and understanding. These threads are the hidden side of all those who are considered ‘stunning and brave’ for throwing on a dress and a bit of lippy. Is there any wonder these women struggle to leave when most people don’t even know they exist?