Trans Perspective Part 1
So I don’t wholly know why I am writing this. Some friends suggested I should write more about my life, my experiences, and thoughts on gender/sexuality. Someone suggested medium to me, and while I wholeheartedly believe that Medium is just some bougie Tumblr with a minimalist aesthetic, I decided to try it. I’m currently recovering from a bilateral mastectomy with free nipple graft (this is a type of surgery that can be constituted as “top surgery” in trans lingo) and have a lot of feels right now as well as time, so I might as well do this. Let’s start at the beginning and work up to now.
I would draw myself with a penis as a kid and I would insist I’d grow up into a boy. These things were really squashed early on by my family, being Baptist in the North. My family would let me have a lot of things the Church would frown upon — Disney movies, Goosebumps, and sugar — but that was the one thing that my mother would vehemently get at* me for.
*hit. I mean hit, but lets not talk about physical abuse.
In my journey, I decided that if I wanted to be a boy I had to like girls. Because every big influence to me (everything in TGIF and Nickelodean) said you had to have a straight relationship. I dated women FOR SO LONG. I was dating girls since I was 12, and my family assumed I was a lesbian. That’s great, fine, whatever. I went into lesbian spaces online in chatrooms and Livejournal and quickly discovered that wanting to be a boy meant I was a) transgender, and b) not fucking cool amongst gay people.
I recently had a sit and think about my past dating women, and I only stopped dating women until very very recently (2015–16 was my last girlfriend). I asked myself if I loved any of them, and truthfully I did. I loved them and felt deeply connected with them. But I was not at all sexually attracted to them. When I was 14, my parents were “encouraged” to get me into therapy by the State and I was shuffled around therapists until one said I should go see a guy who worked with transgender kids. He told my parents that I could do hormones. I said I wanted to do this. My dad wanted me to do what I wanted, my mother said absolutely not. I stopped talking about wanting to be a guy, and subsequently went into therapy with a different person.
When I was 16 and trying to be a “daughter”, I started opening my dating pool to men. While I wore lipstick and wore feminine clothing, I would secretly let my partner know about my desire. How I felt like I was a boy. All the guys I dated supported this, and in secret I was allowed to be a boy when we had sex. It was a weird closet: be a straight woman, because at least I was being turned on.
Then my parents divorced. No longer was I burdened with trying to even feign being a daughter, but I was stymied by being oppressed by my mother. My father didn’t want me, so I had to stick through living with my mother. Effectively she made me dependent on her, and while I write this at the age of 27 I am actively trying to resist her while still being within family. Abusive situations suck. I don’t really care to talk about that right now, because this would just be some weird fucked up ode to how my mother is the root of all my problems and I don’t want to give her that much credit.
I lived my life as openly transgender but I didn’t bind my breasts — its uncomfortable. I was once called a “lazy trans” because I didn’t “do more” to try and pass as male. I dated mostly men, and continued to identify as bisexual, and suddenly I found myself in a relationship with a woman.
Quickly and almost fervently things somehow changed in me — I felt this immediate need to start taking hormones. Friends closest to me started taking it and I started looking at my friends who had long been on it: I wanted that. So I started making efforts to do that. I lowered my antidepressant medication, which was the biggest excuse for me as to why I had a low libido, and during an attempt at phone sex…I couldn’t get aroused. Secretly I later went and watched gay porn and it worked. She broke up with me for something unrelated before I could even bring up the possibility that I might actually be a gay trans man, not a bisexual trans guy. Shortly later I started testosterone. It was a fucking process, let me tell you, to get it. It involved getting into a car wreck (yup!), papers upon papers, shit getting lost in fax, more than 150 dollars in travel costs to and from Boston, and stressing about how to self-inject. But once I got the testosterone…
Shit went buck wild.
My voice started to get low almost immediate, my horniness rose to like a billion percent, and acne cropped up like it had a fucking vendetta against my chin. And I felt so unbelievably happy. I’ve been riding on a high since that day, which yes I have marked in a calendar to celebrate. I had to follow up sometimes to check levels, and things have been good. Then I was asked if I wanted to pursue surgery.
(insert screeching tires brake sound)
In hospitals. With doctors and knives. And IV’s.
It makes me sweat even now and I DID go through with it. I hate surgery, and have a fear of going under anesthesia like…I’ve punched people in an attempt to try and resist falling asleep. I had to really sit down and discuss with myself if I wanted that. I looked in the mirror and as I was growing a beard, I didn’t want my breasts with me. I couldn’t do it. So I decided to discuss with my mother, who full stop was against it. She still is, I think, because I’m not allowed at her house where she lives with her boyfriend because his family is involved. (Note: he absolutely doesn’t mind, and supports me, but she doesn’t want to explain me being trans to absolutely anyone at all). I take care of my grandmother, her mother, and she refused to explain it to her (there is a language barrier, which I will write in another piece) until the last minute, and so I have been uncomfortably dealing with her stares and disconcerting looks each time she sees me changing bandages or airing my nipples.
I did it. I conquered my fear of hospitals, everything, and did it. Myself. This transition is wholly me, by me, for me. And I couldn’t be fucking happier.