Nowhere to go but up.
This isn’t the life I imagined that I’d be living. Which in a lot of ways is a good thing. Life remains exciting. I’ve thought a lot about this piece. I’ve waited and carefully calculated the timing. Everything has been very particular and methodical.
Coming out as transgender isn’t easy. At first, I was caught up in the idea that my fears of coming out would exceed the reality, and that the worst part of it all was the anticipation of coming out. That somehow, everything would get better. That my friends, family, career aspirations, and all else that I valued in my life would remain intact. In the beginning, it felt very much like an elaborate confidence issue. Just be more confident.
It is said that fear is the most elaborate form of imagination, and I thought that my mind was creating a much harsher and crueler world than it really was. I believed my character would be valued greater than my perceived appearance.
I was wrong.
My career ended up getting torched. I engaged in multi-month long feuds with family members, some of which are resolved others are not. I watched the personal liberties that I had enjoyed prior to coming out disintegrate. The trajectory that my life was going on had completely derailed.
I truly thought that I was finished. The irrational thought of ending it all had somehow became rational. I am lucky to have a fiancé that I love so dearly, and I was able to focus on being on this earth for as long as I possibly can with her rather than the prospect of taking my own life. I promised to be with her forever and I will keep that promise.
Rebuilding my life has been a difficult process. My CV suddenly meant nothing as my accolades and talents were not enough to overcome the prospect of a transgender employee. I became increasingly destitute.
I came down to my last hundred dollars and decided to create my own company. I’ve always wanted to start my own company, admittedly I thought it’d be with some high technology start-up or product I made. I’ve made products before, but this time was different. This company was a product of necessity, not necessarily ambition.
In retrospect, it is impulsive to say that coming out did more damage than it did good. I lost a lot.
But I don’t think about the world without me anymore. I sleep easier at night. My skin no longer feels as if it is on constant fire. I am a better, happier, and more capable human being than ever before.
There are still lingering issues. There is still tremendous hatred in the world. Life is still painfully difficult.
But I’m free. Free from the constant pain. Free from the torment.
My character remains the same. I have the same demeanor and traits as before. But the soul that has always existed is now visible to the entire world.
I am not some before and after photo. I am not just a trans* person. My hope is to be treated in conformity with my peers. I am not looking for special privileges.
My ask, with making this information so public, that it does not become a matter of speculation. There are far more interesting things to talk about than me. If you know people in my past, I’d say it’s reasonable to ask to leave them out of this conversation. I acknowledge that by publishing this I have lost control over the flow of information, but I would hope that people understand that the ephemeral thrill they may gain from sharing this information as gossip with people from my past comes at a price of my distress.
I’d like to thank all the people who’ve been so supportive, kind, and even apathetic at times. Some of the kindness things I’ve heard from people is that they simply don’t care and that is has zero bearing on how they see me.
I’d like to thank my fiancé. She makes me a better person every day and without her I’d be lost. I couldn’t have gotten to where I am without her.
I am free.
I’m not sure how much I’ll write about this. I already have a few public obligations with respect to being an activist for the trans* community, I have a company to run, and a life to live. I’m not sure who this will reach, but feel free to drop me a line at firstname.lastname@example.org if you want to talk.