(CLOSED Thanks!) Is this plot line too much??

Hi everyone! And thanks in advance for checking out this thread.

I’m currently writing a transgender (M to F) character, and it’s important to me that my writing reflect diverse and therefore flawed characters. I want my narrator to makes decisions that aren’t necessarily good or correct, but she makes them because she is trying to cope with what she is going through.

My fear though is that, since the transgender community can be marginalized and judged unfairly by certain populations, that going too far with the flawed aspect will reflect negatively on that community. I don’t want people to read my book and think that the message is that transgender people are freaks, if you see what I’m saying.

So here’s the plot line that I’ve been rolling with in my mind currently:
My MC is in the car of a girl who lives next door. This girl recently leaves my MC alone in the car, and my MC is looking around. She sees some underwear that has been stashed in the compartment of the door. I think an interesting plot point could be that my MC steals them, because this is a way that she can experiment with feeling more like a woman.
However, I fear that people will either take this sexually, as in a creepy stalker who steals her intimate clothing and wears them. Or alternatively, that it will seem like I’m saying the mere fact that my MC is transgender makes her more inclined to steal things.

I think it’s an interesting plot, and I don’t mind my story being a little dark and creepy. I just wouldn’t want to go too far, as I do believe that this is a sensitive subject.

I think maybe alternatively I could just ditch the panty story as it pertains to the neighbor and just have my MC buy some for herself if I want to continue with that. Or, I can have the MC take/buy another article of clothing that’s not as intimate. Or alternatively even, I can just ditch this idea entirely.

Let me know what you think and please no hate in your replies :see_no_evil:

You can go with original ideal, it just you would have to define the pretext of leading to this plot very well. Make sure that your readers wouldn’t misinterpret your story but I think there will be some people who will misinterpret. Since you are writing about transgender character I think the panty story would be natural to the plot and also interesting. I guess you can write about character is trying to return underwear after mc washed it . That is just my opinion, I’m not very well versed of the transgender topic because I’m from conservative country and never seen or met transgender person. I hope you will soloution to your problem :slight_smile:

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Thanks for your reply! Definitely already had in my mind that she was going to wash them :wink: best wishes to you xx

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In my very unqualified opinion, you might run the risk of playing into certain bullshit stereotypes and anxieties that people have around transgender people as “predatory” or “perverse” due to the nature of the action, despite her reasoning for it. Like @Little_Dreamerz said, I think it could be something that is easily misinterpreted, but it also totally depends on how it’s written.

Of course, it’s important for a character to have flaws and making a character perfect just because they’re part of a marginalized community would be kinda dehumanizing in its own way. It’s a little tricky but it seems like authors run into trouble when character flaws align with stereotype-- not that’s necessarily what you’re doing here. Ultimately, it’s up to you and how you write the scene and if the emotion behind it is accurate to the character and the huge variety of experiences of figuring out one’s gender identity. It could be helpful to seek out a trans person’s feedback on the scene.

If you do decide to change the scene, perhaps seeing the underwear could cause the MC to seriously consider stealing them and it could be a moment where she decides on buying herself some? Unless there’s no safe way for her to buy any, then the stealing would seem more like her only chance at being able to experiment with wearing some.

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Who stashes underwear in the door of their car? I can’t think of a single person that I’ve come across in 42 years of life who does that :joy:

That right there makes me think it’s unrealistic.

We haven’t even gotten to the actual MC doing anything and if that’s problematic.

In this day and age I don’t think a person has to steal somebody else’s underwear to experiment. They can buy some online. They can buy some at a store and get a gift receipt to pretend it’s a gift if they are nervous about the cashier being judgmental, etc.

Stealing from someone is creepy, stealing underwear is creepier. I would avoid that idea.

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Thanks! This mirrors a lot my feelings on the subject. You’ve given me a lot to think about <3

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Thanks for your input :slight_smile: I think that this bit works well within my story, and I go into more explanation of why it’s there. I think it’s a good insight into the character of the girl who owns the car, but I just didn’t know how or if I should tie it back to the MC, and I think it makes sense in the setting and time period of my piece.

This is the sentiment I want to avoid from most readers. Thanks for your feedback.

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I just bounced this off my M to F post-transition best friend and roommate, and she cringed.

  1. This basically feeds the “trans-perv” stereotypes - that it’s all about underwear, that they can’t be trusted, without even getting into the implications of someone else’s intimate clothing.

  2. Why? Just buy your own online.

  3. it’s only underwear. This is presumably not a transvestite who gets turned on by female underclothes. (And I’m not judging that either, BTW, but it is NOT the same thing.) For someone who genuinely feels they’ve got the wrong hardware, underwear is going to do little or nothing as far as “experimenting” with her real self.

That’s the summary of her reaction, anyway.

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Ok thanks!

Hey, so I don’t know how to (or if I can) close a topic, but I got what I needed so please no more replies :slight_smile:

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