"If I could experience the pain of menstruation and of childbirth, by all the gods, I would. I yearn to. But I am no less of a woman because I cannot. Not all ciswomen can menstruate or give birth — or, as Margaret Atwood puts it in “The Female Body,” “The Reproductive System is optional, and can be removed.” I am not appropriating a feminine space while conveniently avoiding the pains. And I have no desire to force my way into situations I cannot contribute to meaningfully, like meetings about the experiential realities of pregnancy. This is a space, in the wide world of womanhood, that is not part of my experience. But I can speak with those women about so much: harassment, diminished employment opportunities, societal expectations of our bodies, and on and on. There are many constellations in the star field of womanhood, and I represent one of them. Often, we converge."