"Transgender women were not socialized as female, therefore, they can never be women."
For real? THIS is the logical argument to hang your transmisogynistic hat on?
First, I didn't ask to be socialized as male. It was something that was put to me from birth, as gender-based socialization is with all of us.
Second, did anyone ever stop to think that there are many damn good reasons why, as soon as I was old enough to understand, and in spite of my upbringing, I wholeheartedly mentally rejected this male socialization that is rooted in these patriarchal constructs? That, all throughout my life, I've watched the women in my world mentally and physically abused? That the "advantages" or privilege I gain from living as male don't seem advantageous at all? That I would want to fight against a system of control that harms us all?
Third, feminism means that all women are respected and seen as equals, treated as whole, actual people, capable of making our own decisions and living our own lives. Anyone who tells women, while making our decisions and living our lives, that we're wrong to do so, is the opposite of feminism.
Because of these reasons, to me, the opposite of the above argument is true. I can never be a man, nor will it be forced upon me, not by society, not by the TERFs, and not by anyone else, no matter what they think or say about me. This is not an attempt to shed my privilege, or to deny past mistakes I've made when I was younger. It is simply who I am, and how I feel about myself, in my heart, my mind, and in the context of the world I live in. I will not apologize for embracing my femininity, for feeling more connected with others, for feeling beautiful inside and out, for expressing my emotions. I will not be made to feel ashamed about my feminine appearance. I will not, I cannot, go back to how things were because a group of hateful naysayers constantly tries to define for me who I am.
My name is Coda. I am a woman.