Q: When did you realize the term transgender referred to you?
A: Honestly, not very long ago. I guess I first started considering myself as transgender only a few weeks ago, but I suspect the seed was sown months before. Ironically both these events revolve weddings; the first was the day before myself and a group of University friends headed to the wedding of two good friends. Most of my University friends graduated several years ago and as such most have moved to different cities for work, so the wedding was a bit of a reunion for us all. Many had many hundreds of miles to travel in order to make it, and the night before my flat was the half waypoint, the pit stop before the final leg of the journey to a country manor house in the Scottish Highlands. That night we all sat around catching up, having a few beers and failing to watching the Veronica Mars Movie. Mike, (that isn’t his real name, in fact I’ll be changing all the names in the story out of respect for my friends privacy) started telling us the local gossip, that Roscoe (who I’ve never met) had started living as a girl, that she had came out as a Transsexual. Out of fair representation to my friends I need to explain that we were making jokes about this, (myself included) but it was never out of malice, rather it’s just our sense of humor, it tends to be pretty close to the bone. For while we might make jokes about such things we’re all a pretty liberal bunch, who generally don’t care about such things. It’s just that being transgender or transsexual for the majority of people isn’t something they come across everyday, and this was true for my friends. Anyway Mike explained that since Roscoe came out she had been talking quite liberally about her past and the things that had led her to coming out. One of these was how she had liked to cross dress in private, (something I have done on and off since childhood). Mike also told us how Roscoe was in the process of transitioning. Although I always knew that people could have a sex change, it was here that it first registered in my mind, that I first realized it… It’s hard to explain how you can know about something but only just realize it; I have a history of it. For the rest of the weekend I can’t say I thought much more about it, but I do believe the seed was sown from this point.
Several weeks ago, I was again with the same group of friends at a different wedding, when the topic of Roscoe once again came up (followed by more of the same jokes, excepted this time permeated with the undertone of “hey, as long as she’s happy.” Mike updated us that Roscoe had now legally changed her name to Irene and would shortly begin taking hormones, this time I took a particular interest in the conversation. Now what I generally love about my friends was that their biggest problem wasn’t that Roscoe was now Irene, but that they didn’t like the name she had chosen. (No offence meant to anyone with that name, it’s not even the name she really chose, as I said I’m changing them.) With the general chorus being “If you’re going to change your name, why pick Irene? It’s an old person name.” The rest of the wedding was relatively uneventful, but this time Irene’s situation stuck out in my mind, I continued thinking about it for the rest of the night, and in fact have barely stopped thinking about it since.
The next day when I got back to my flat I changed into my girl clothes and begin researching transgender and transsexuals. I found that more and more of it described feelings that I’ve had in the past or continue to have now. After this it was pretty easy for me to consider myself transgender. The part I remain unsure off, is just where under the transgender umbrella I fall.