A Letter To The Indian Trans Man By An Indian Lesbian

Dear Satya,

Congratulations! We read your letter to Angelina Jolie in the Times of India.
Personally I would like to see this go in the compilation of “Best Letters Written To Celebrities” book or something like “Compelling Qs from the Queers”, or better yet in the bundle of “Misunderstood Mastectomies”.

Google tells me you are doing great work for the Indian trans community across the Globe. It warms my heart to know that people like you exist. People who value fellow beings, understand their pain and anxiety, and empower them to live a life they want to live. Society and its norms can bite the dust!


Yes, there is a disappointing “but” here. So why am I still disappointed with your otherwise worthy Angie knock knock?

Is it because it was disappointing to see that instead of congratulating a woman who chose life over her gifted breasts, you seemed to express an act of spite? Or is it because it was disappointing to see that instead of celebrating a life of another, you decided to tell her how unfair the world has been to you (and other Queers of the world)? Or perhaps I am disappointed because instead of admiring the courage, you chose to condemn the science using her as an excuse.

Or maybe it is disappointing because instead of applauding a voice that has the power to enable women living with breast cancer to fight it, you thought it would be wise to mock it down with your been-there-done-that arrogance?


Agreed your anger questions are valid. And, I’d like to believe that they are written in earnest. I felt the pain and the struggle when I read your words out loud.

“Why is it that cosmetic surgeries for women skip the pathologisation that is mandatory for trans people all over the world? Why is it that medicine cannot facilitate trans people in the same way and grant them the same dignity of self identity?”.

But pray tell me weren’t your questions addressed to the wrong person altogether? I mean what stopped you from pointing your blame towards the medical fraternity and their lack of queer sensitivity? Why absolve the society and law which time and again fails to understand anything beyond the gender binary? Surely they are idiots who are limited by their knowledge and do not respect the fine abstractions such as yours?

I would sincerely like to know; was this letter written to jibe a celebrity and thereby bring attention or are you just angry at her for getting something easily, while you fought hard for it for the longest time and had to compromise and play along normative rules?

Living an open queer life isn’t easy, well at least not in our part of the world. But there is no doubt that change is happening. And this change is a result of continuous sensitization, big or small. Then why do some of us persist with this mentality of trashing others? I mean if we dish out hatred and spiteful remarks even to those who have been our proven allies, I really don’t know what kind of support we should expect.

At one point you say, “removing my breasts should have been seen as my ‘aesthetic choice’ ” and in the same sentence you question a woman for wanting to reconstruct her breasts? Why?

Honestly I find myself oscillating on your position; Are you fighting the mentality that questions us non-normative folks OR is your fight against those who blend well within the society’s set gender constructions?

I recently heard this in a film trailer… “An economist says more for you means less for me, but a lover says more for you means more for me”. Now if only we could all walk the lover’s path. Beautiful that would be, don’t you think?

Yours Truly,


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