Today a friend asked me ‘how do I know I am transgender?’ Well, that is a good question so I thought I would use it as a prompt. Since I can remember I have never felt like I am right, or that I belong. As a child, I became a bit of a loner and as an adult even more so. At about the age of 14/15 I was caught up in becoming aware of my sexuality and brushed aside much of what I now know to be signs of inner gender as being part of being a gay woman and the battle against being gay.
Of course, sexuality and gender identity are not the same and that became evident in my 20’s, and I accepted my gender to be fluid, that of a genderqueer. As I have said in previous posts I often took sanctuary in neutrality as it was easier to cope with my depressions that way. I would do that when Jem was showing himself a bit too much. The number of times I have stared myself down in a mirror or glass window denying what my eyes and mind were telling me are too many to count – I wish I had a quid for every time as I’d be a millionaire many times over. Every time I saw myself in a mirror I see her looking back at me and knew it shouldn’t be her but he. And I hated myself for thinking that.
Over the last few years since coming out of the gay-closet publicly, I also gradually gave up the pretence of femininity and presented as male. For the last two years that has been exclusive with the occasional drift into neutrality for the benefit of family and friends. It’s not enough, I know it is not enough; I need to be true to my own identity not this shell I was born with. I know it means some tough choices but the time has come to man up and face those choices. I was never right in this ideal of femininity, to me that is something way beyond me, an ideology that I admire for its grace and beauty; it is not what I am.
It never has been me. My essence is masculine I feel it driving within me like a force of energy. Each day he gets stronger, more vital. I have no choice but to accept what I know to be true – I am male. I am a man trapped, for now, inside a female body. How do I know because my every sense tells me it is so, I am stronger emotionally and mentally now that I know he is me. I am not crazy as I thought I was I am transgender. The choices will be what is done and how I change the physical me to be more fitting to the real me. The new-born goatee is looking good, and training the voice to a lower tone is empowering too.
The fact is over the last few years the stress of denying my gender identity has been intolerable and it is time to do something about it. I have to live my life and find a balance for myself where I can do that. The last two years has proved to me that living as a man and identifying as a man gives me that balance. Miss, Mrs and Ms are not acceptable only Mr will do.
© Jem Farmer 2013