Growing up I didn't quite live up to what was expected of a girl. As a toddler I frequently claimed to be a boy, and when I started to hit puberty I cut my hair and started to wear loose-fitting clothes. I was born in the late 90's and transitioning was not an option I knew of. Had I been born 10 years later I might well have seen that as the solution. Instead I found radical feminism.
It was life changing. It put my experiences in the context of ideology. And it said that society was the problem, not me. Every 8th of March the local anarchist bookstore would organise a women-only event. First time I attended I was 12. It was wonderful. Just hanging out with women who shared my beliefs and my experiences. Also, I felt safe. I've not experienced a lot of male abuse, but none the less I get that subconscious fear of psycial/verbal/sexual abuse whenever I spend time around men I don't know. I hadn't quite thought about it until at the women-only event, when I realised that fear was gone.
Then came gender ideology. One year ten men came to the event. They called us transphobes for only allowing biological women. The next year anyone who identified as a women was welcome. Anyone who looked like a man would be asked by the guards if they identified as a woman. If they did they were welcome. Around ten men came. They were loud, disruptive and demanding. They called us transphobes for not having any lectures or movies about transwomen. Then they called us transphobes for only asking people who looked like men if they identified as women. We should have asked everyone.
I haven't gone to these events anymore. The same goes for most of my friends. Nowadays the event on 8th of March is mostly about trans and non-binary folks. I'm sad that I've lost an important place. But most of all I feel sad for the 12-year old girls of today, who doesn't get to experience the feeling of safety that comes with a women-only space.