Author, media personality and generally awesome person, Janet Mock, recently penned a widely-praised article titled “How Society Shames Men Who Date Trans Women & How This Affects Our Lives”. Besides being one mouthful of a title, it’s actually a lovely, heartfelt piece about the impact society’s stigma on men who date trans women has on both these men and their trans partners.

Still, there was one issue I struggled with in the article: there is a difference between a straight, bisexual or pansexual man who is interested in trans women and a self-proclaimed “tranny chaser” or “trans admirer.” The straight/bi/pan man is someone who would date you whether or not they had forehand knowledge of your trans status. The other group, the “chasers” and “admirers” are interested in trans women only because of their trans history.

While Mock makes some excellent points about the senseless need of society to turn the mundane into the sensational, and about the needless shame straight/bi/pan men are put through should they show interest in a trans woman, I felt like she let the stalker-y “chasers” and “admirers” off the hook entirely.

On “chasers”:
These are the dudes who pop up in my Twitter notifications with names like @trannylover0 or @lovestrans or @she_male_lover. Make no bones about it (heh. bone. heh.), these aren’t the guys Janet was talking about in her article. These are guys who realize that trans women tend to have self-esteem issues early in their transitions, making them vulnerable to sleazy come-ons. These are the guys who don’t really see trans women as women, but rather as sex objects, freaks to fulfill their fetishistic fantasies.

These are not the guys we should worry about being shamed. These are not the loving, caring individuals Janet spoke of who were getting a bad wrap. These guys are bad news.

It’s important to not confuse “being the object of someone’s fetish” with “love,” but it seems like a lot of trans women do. So desperate for affirmation, for attention, some of these women will go to great lengths to defend the “chasers” of the world. It’s like a form of Stockholm Syndrome. These girls are exposed to sleazy advances so often that they begin to sympathize with the chaser, to convince themselves that he’s “not really” a chaser, that he really does love her.

One’s genital configuration should be incidental. A normal guy may be very interested in a woman, later find out that she’s trans and have no issue with that. That’s wonderful. A chaser, on the other hand, seeks out trans women, interested in them for that reason alone. Don’t fall for that, girls. Basically, if a guy wouldn’t date a cisgender woman version of you, he’s into you for all the wrong reasons.

Maybe I’m not qualified to opine on this topic. After all, I’m not into guys… at all. Still, creepers give me the, well, creeps.