Member's Articles

 

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"He kept me alive until She could live." SG

"When I was at school I would stand by the wall, willing myself to become invisible. Nobody could see the real me anyway, so I was invisible." LM

"My Mother told me I was a boy, so why did I believe that I was a girl? I always wanted the presents that my sister had at Christmas and Birthday; instead I was given boy stuff. When puberty hit me, I became even more confused. I remember that we were on holiday, I saw this girl, a year or two older than me, she was beautiful. A part of me responded to this new sensation caused by the influx of testosterone but the larger part of me wanted to be her. I felt so embarrassed. Oh what bliss it would be if I could wake up and find myself in a body that fits me. It has taken so long to even start to become ‘me’. Now I have a chance to live my life, to be the person I always knew I was. At the Chrysalis Meeting Centre there are people I can talk to. They don’t have all the answers and they don’t have a magic wand. What they do have is an understanding of what it is to be transsexual; it is a place where I feel safe and where I can talk about myself without prejudice." LG

"The only way we can change society is not be ashamed for who we are, and also always just be you. But I would always do this from a point of strength not weakness. I will not apologise to anyone for what I am doing with my life. I am just putting it right, as it is not my fault that nature made a mistake. People have to understand we were born with female brain and emotions and somehow we got the wrong body. But first we do this from strength. People will have misconceptions, the way to put this right is by telling people." SG

"Am I an Idea or a Person?"
" I have been in my new role for two years now; it has not always been plain sailing. Most of us at some point in our journey have had to deal with abuse. It has occurred to me over the years that the abuse is not aimed at the person, the individual, but mostly it is aimed at the idea that anyone would ‘want’ to change their gender. In my experience the abuse has not been aimed at me, it is aimed at the issue that has bothered me all of my life. Other people seem to have a bigger problem with me being a Transsexual than I do. I just want to be left alone; it is hard enough having to be me without having strangers drawing attention to my plight. There have been many times when I have wanted to cry out, ”why me?” When I was the target of abuse I would take it personally and mentally beat myself up over it. It gradually dawned on me that these are two separate issues. The person who is shouting abuse at me is really venting their own fear. So why should it matter? It is their fear, not mine. I know that I am doing the right thing; their opinion does not stop how I feel. My life is my responsibility; I am not responsible for their fears so why should I let their prejudices upset my life? I asked myself the question “does their opinion stop how I feel?” The answer was NO, so I chose to move forward anyway.

I am sure that I am not alone when I say that when I was growing up I always felt that there was extra pressure on me. Society has a pre-conceived idea of how we should live. When people do not conform to the set ideal, to the conventional view of society, their reaction is to mock what they do not understand. If society is faced with an individual who is different, someone that cannot be put into the regulation box marked male or female, they will make excuses to justify their actions when they are abusing the one they believe is a misfit. Society does not have to think, it is a faceless mob. There are deep set ideas that are founded in fear and superstition that form the undercurrent that creates the thug and the abuser. Their own fear that they are themselves on the fringe of society can be the excuse to hurl abuse at others, mostly in an attempt to force the focus away from their own inadequacies. They are incapable of separating those who make them afraid, they lump us all together and put three into one. What I mean to say is that homosexual, transsexual and transvestite are classed by society as being the same. It is unlikely that they have ever spoken to someone who is transitioning, so where does that opinion come from? Firstly it comes from the family, from transferred pre-set ideas. It also comes from peer group pressure; the prejudices are transferred from one generation to another.

The family I grew up in had pre-fixed ideas. I was able to gauge from a young age that my family and school friends would have little understanding about ‘me’, it was the way we were all brought up. I was brought up to respect their ideas, even if that left me with no place to turn for guidance. The norm was to be wary of anyone who showed homosexual tendencies, so what would they say if they knew about me? I had hoped that I could hide or that these feelings would go away, but they didn’t. By the time I was sixteen I was sure that I would not grow out of being a transsexual.

When the time came that I had to tell my family, I knew that they had pre-fixed ideas about gender and sexuality. I so much wanted them to understand. Even though I knew it would be difficult, I did expect them to be on my side. It hurt so much when I told people I was close to and they turned their back on me. I wanted my family to sit down and listen but they had never come across a transsexual before and their opinions and fear were firmly fixed. At first my mum just seemed to accept it but that was mainly because she could not comprehend what was happening. I so much wanted her to understand but the best she could do was to care. She cared and she listened, unfortunately she could never quite understand what made me transsexual. I expected them to be on my side, to support me. Some of my family seemed to accept what I told them, they were alright with me until I started living in role full time. That was when it became real to them, their sudden disapproval showed that they had not understood what I had been telling them about who I am. It really hurt when they did not want to even say ‘hello’ to me. Eventually some of my family came around, it is not however a consolation. The hurt and rejection are still there. No one will ever know how much I wanted those close to me to understand. I tell myself that I am being unrealistic as they were not born Transsexual, how should I expect them to understand? I know that my mum could not understand, she tried but she never could quite come to terms with it. She cared though, she still loved me and supported me in the best way that she could. I hope she knew how important it was to me to know that she loved me. Even though she could not understand what was happening to me, her unconditional love sustained me.

The only way I can change society is to not be ashamed of who I am, I know I must always just be me. I do this from a point of strength, not weakness. I will not apologise to anyone for what I am doing with my life. I am just putting it right. It is not my fault that nature made a mistake. People, society, have to understand that I was born with a female brain and emotions and somehow got into the wrong body. I now do this from strength. People, society, will have misconceptions; the way to put this right is by speaking out."
Re-written from the original submitted by S G.

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