I think the question is mis-phased (like a lot of these are). "Genetic" - What does that mean?
To quote the wiki, a genotype is "the genetic constitution of a cell, an organism, or an individual (i.e. the specific allele makeup of the individual) usually with reference to a specific character under consideration", whereas a phenotype is "ny observable characteristic or trait of an organism: such as its morphology, development, biochemical or physiological properties, or behavior. Phenotypes result from the expression of an organism's genes as well as the influence of environmental factors and the interactions between the two." "Genetics" for most people is assumed to relate to the phenotype - that is observable traits; whereas the genetic information is really the genotype. The phenotype therefore is is evidence of what we become, whereas the genotype is what we started out as.
So in this sense, it's misguided to assume that personality is only either "genetic" or environmental - it's both!In truth life is a bit like a round of poker - it's not what you're dealt with that matters, it's how you play the hand that counts.
For anyone who is TRANSSEXUAL, this is initially a "no-brainer". The "obvious" reaction is to say that one would prefer to have been born in the "correct gender." Yes, that would be great, but I'm not so sure about that. I wrote a poem a long time ago, called "The Price", and in it I have a line that reads ....for gender's but a vessel, to keep your soul within.
I think in many ways this is another mis-thought question that one sees in Writer's Block, suggested perhaps by someone who wouldn't change much at all, but curious about others. Anyone who's seen either of the Butterfly Effect films will know that all change or alternation comes with consequences. The main characters in each were driven by regret abut what happened, and what they didn't do in the past. But after such changes they had all the memories of the previous versions of reality, and that was the flaw in it all, because no matter what their reality became, there was always an element that about it that would never compare with the original. It was a no win situation, and no wonder the films had pretty much the same outcome.
So, if I were to have a "do-over" (actually the subject of a story I haven't drawn yet) I definitely wouldn't want to have a memory of the original. So then the question is what would I redo. Possibilities:
- Different sex - Would I prefer to have been born with XX instead of XY chromosomes? Maybe, but who's to say that might not have still had gender dysphoria, becoming an F2M instead of an M2F? Going further would be the above, but with the rider of no such condition. I think I would be a very different person from who I am right now. Maybe I would have married the first boy who took an interest in me, or got me pregnant. And maybe now I would have been guilty of murder (either someone else's or my own). I might have run away at home when I was 14, taken to the streets and become an uncaring sex worker. Or maybe I would still be home looking after my mother, having not moved, not gone to TAFE or university.
- No epilepsy - What if I'd never have had meningitis or epilepsy? My confidence might have been intact for much longer. I may have been involved in more fights at primary and high school. I may have been a practising artist for over 20 years by now. I might have learnt to drive and swim in my teens, instead of doing so when I was 30. Or I may have just been a bully, or maybe my art would be fairly average, instead of like this comic, which I've received more than a few "thank you for doing this" from people over the years.
- Earlier gender transition - I used to think sometimes that I should begun my transition in my teens or early 20s (in the late 1970s) rather than when in my late 30s (in the 1990s). But, I know that I just wasn't strong enough to have done so at that age. I was still reeling from the effects of my epilepsy and the medication I took for it. And things seemed tougher back then for folk like myself. Also, surgical techniques seemed to be cruder back then, less refined and less able to give one a good result. It took time for me to be who I am.
- Better eyesight - this would have been nice. I would have been ale to read the blackboard at primary school and not now have bifocals. Might have changed slightly how others have related to me, or maybe not. Even so, this seems the least likely candidate for a single change.
- Different parents - can' say that it ever crossed my mind. I come from a working class background. What would I change?
The truth of the matter is, that even if I might be tempted to change something about myself, is that I wouldn't even if i had the opportunity. Who knows that would be absent from my life by such changes? I might never have: moved out from home, or from Western Australia; gone to TAFE/University; owned Pegasus; met either Lee, Jenny or Carol; or drawn comics or done art at all. And these things, for better or worse, have been or are important in the life I do live.
Fuck having a "do over card", I just need to do now, in the here and now, what i need to do.
The car I owned with Lee (a Datsun Sunny station wagon) was called The Sunny. The van I owned with Carol (a 1300 Mazda van) was called The Vardo (Rom for 'Van') and the car I owned for 10 years (a Nissan Pintara station wagon) was fully called The Kushti Rauni (Rom for 'Good Lady") or more commonly just The Rauni.
If and when I get my postie bike, I'm not sure what I might call it.
Fucked if I'd know when kids should start dating.
Only ever had two "proper dates" in my life. On the first we saw the film The Killing Fields and my date crashed the car on the way out of the car park. On the second (over 20 years later) we saw a Cole Porter musical (At long last Love) put on by a local repatory company and I fell asleep watching it. Otherwise, I've just gone out by myself, or with folk I've already been in a relationship with.
I have no expectations of dating. I don't expect it, look for it, or would know what to do if it fell on me.
I think my 12 year old self'd be uncomprehending. Back then I was fully doped up on anti-seizure drugs for epilepsy and it was like living as a zombie mostly. My 12 year old self was scared shitless and felt totally dependent upon everyone else, which was hard to cope with because my 12 year old self couldn't/wouldn't/shouldn't trust most of them.
My 12 year old self wouldn't recognise me at all, because it was my 13 year old self that got around to reading a certain passage in a certain book, and KNEW with ABSOLUTE CERTAINTY that that passage described themselves. But my 13 year old self didn't think that such changes were possible. My 13 year old self wanted to die, or run away, or something to get away and make things clear.
So no, my 12 year old self wouldn't have had a clue, let alone be happy or dissappinted for me.
President Kennedy's Assassination. I had no idea who he was (I was 5 years old, and living in Australia) until I heard he'd been shot and everyone seemed to think that was a BAD thing (though I didn't know why). Did it have an impact on my world view - not really. Primary school and TV were my world view back then.