Author Notes Edit
This page was not originally in the script, but this is something I've been kinda wanting to talk about for a while in this comic.
For those less familiar with the terminology, "stealth" is when a transgender person is just trying to blend in. They only reveal that they are trans maybe to their very closest family, friends, lover (if that). But anyone else, including most friends, co-workers, casual acquaintances, etc, will probably never ever know. Mainly, it's about a desire of the individual to not have to deal with prejudices/questions/etc that can come with being transgender. Both Rain and Jessica would be classified as stealth.
Trans folk who are "visible" are essentially the opposite. While they aren't exactly going up to random strangers and outing themselves to anyone who will listen (well, some might), they are usually out to their extended families, friends, co-workers, etc. In short, anyone they might see in their everyday life is probably aware of the individual's trans status (with maybe one or a few people strategically left out of the loop because for one reason or another). Vincent is very open to everyone, and thus, visible. Incidentally, I'm also visible (kinda hard not to be when you write a trans-themed comic publicly accessible to pretty much the whole world that has your name and photo attached to it). XD
The reason I wanted to address this, is that I have actually noticed a lot of in-fighting in the trans community over this. Visible people claiming being stealth is "transphobic". Stealth people claiming visibility "outs everyone". Thankfully, not everyone is like this (I really don't see it much here, but I've seen and heard it elsewhere more than I care for) It all rubs me the wrong way. As Vincent says here, trans folk have to work extra hard to be able to express themselves the way they want to. And I think it's kind of horrible to go through that and then try to tell someone else how they should live their lives.
With that in mind, I don't exactly want to tell anyone what to do, but can I make a humble suggestion and request that we all just "live and let live?" The reality is that if being stealth is what makes you comfortable, be stealth. If you'd rather be an open book with no secrets, be visible. There are pros and cons to both, so I don't feel like there's one that's literally better than the other. So just be you, let others be them.
Maybe this isn't even that big of a problem. Maybe I just happen to know the handful, but it's been bugging me, so I just wanted to say my piece. Discussions, as always, are absolutely welcome.
I... I had no idea. I really couldn't tell.
Wait. I think that came out wrong.
Nah. I didn't hear anything unfavorable, and I'm not offended.
I'm actually pretty open about my trans staus, so I hear it kind of a lot.
Sorry for not telling you directly sooner. I wasn't exactly tryinf to hide it. I just thought you knew already and were trying not to draw attention to it.
It's okay. I'm just surprised is all. I didn't know there were so many of us.
More than you think. You probably know a few in your everyday life and don't realize it.
Can I ask a stupid question?
There are no stupid questions, Rain.
You pass so well. Why would you want to be openly trans? Isn't it a hassle? Don't you just get judged?
Sure. Everyone gets judged. If not for this, something else.
I'd just rather be open about it. It's who I am. If you prefer to be more low-key, go for it. There's no wrong way to be.
We as trans people work so hard to become us, and we should live our lives in whatever way allows us to achieve that.
Male of female. Stealth or visibility. It's really just all about being you.