The world of social media in general can be a sounding board for even the most unwelcome of perspectives, as trans activist and Men's Health cover star Aydian Dowling can attest. Since posting more pictures of himself topless, Dowling has received a number of negative and transphobic comments, including calls to "Put a shirt on!"
Dowling, who has been open about his transition on YouTube, took to social media himself to respond to these catcalls, posting a lengthy and spirited statement on his Instagram which underscores just how transphobic they are:
“Cis-men walk around daily, post IG posts, FB, Snapchat, all of it- and are seen as ‘ok’ no matter the age, size, colour, anything- to have a shirt off. But once Transmen who work their ass off [to] AFFORD Top Surgery start posting shirtless photos- it’s now seen as ‘too much’ or ‘topless’.”
“I say- TAKE YOUR SHIRT OFF! You aren’t too fat. You aren’t too skinny. You aren’t not ‘manly’ enough. You aren’t too black or too white. You aren’t post-op? Who cares?! You are female identifying? Who cares?!
See the full post below, and be sure to peruse Aydian's Instagram to see all the hot and beautiful torso shots.
"Put a shirt on!" It's a pretty common thing said to me. It makes me wonder- Is it because I was born Female that so many people insist having my shirt off is me being 'topless'? ••••• Cis-men walk around daily, post IG posts, FB, Snapchat, all of it- and are seen as 'ok' no matter the age, size, color, anything- to have a shirt off. But once Transmen who work their ass off the AFFORD Top Surgery start posting shirtless photos- it's now seen as 'too much' or 'topless'. ••••• I don't wear a shirt in the Summer time mostly because I work daily in my studio with no a/c and only a garage door as my 'window'. It's hot, humid, and damn I work my tail off! Plus, I paid good money to have this surgery done to feel more in my skin, why wouldn't I want to be proud of that accomplishment?! ••••• But we continue to tell Transmen to 'Put a shirt on'. ••••• I say- TAKE YOUR SHIRT OFF! You aren't too fat. You aren't too skinny. You aren't not 'manly' enough. You aren't too black or too white. You aren't post-op? Who cares?! You are female identifying? Who cares?! •••• I say #freethenipple! Or maybe you don't even have nipples?! Let those non nipple chests out of their cages! ••••• STOP letting people make you feel SHAME because you are confident in yourself enough to be shirtless. ••••• Let the bare chests FREE!! #Ftm #loveyourself #itsfreakinghot #summertime #freethenipple #femaletomale #transgender #stopshamingnow #topsurgery #femaletomale #alionsfears #aydiandowling