I’m From Washington.

If I had the choice to go back and live life as a man or stay who I am today and die, I’d welcome death with open arms and kiss my little boy goodbye.

I transitioned a long time ago. I think there are varying degrees to being a transsexual woman and some of us suffer through gender dysphoria in a much more severe manner than others do. That said, I like to keep my name anonymous because it’s very rare that I sit down reminiscing on all the things that led up to today, that helped free my true self from my self-induced prison cell to live life as it was meant to be. Some of the experiences I had growing up were quite typical for me.

My parents would eventually try to employ fear appeals to force me to adhere to their gender role expectations. I started to suppress who I really was because I was afraid I’d get yelled at again or face harsh, punitive sanctions for my behavior. I was 8 years old and this was the first time I remember my mother using fear appeals to modify my behavior. It was the early 1980s and my family would regularly go to my uncle’s house to socialize, eat dinner and watch movies. We spent many holidays there and my uncle was a big jolly fellow that enjoyed time to socialize with extended family and friends. Sometimes I miss people like him because he never let the ill wills of society hinder his pro-social attitude. He had a daughter that was two years older than I was and while my older brothers – all of them – would be outside playing war, riding bikes and playing with cap guns I was inside with my cousin playing with her dolls, playing house and pretending I was the wife. You know, the normal stuff little girls do when they are having fun.

Then suddenly my mother came into the room. She was angrier than I had ever seen before because for the last few years I had been acting like a typical boy, but that was only because I was afraid of them. They essentially physically and emotionally forced me to adhere to their social role expectations.

My mother was furious and yelled at me louder than she had ever before, “God damn you! Little boys do not act like this! What is wrong with you?” she exclaimed. I was scared and began to cower down to take more of her wrenching verbal abuse. “I did not raise you to act this way, only little girls act like this! Are you a little girl or are you a boy?” I was not sure what to say because it seemed as though the only way to get out of being in trouble again would be to say what she wanted to hear, but that was a lie and if I lied I’d get into trouble and if I tried to be myself I would get into trouble. I couldn’t win either way.

“Well?” She said expecting an immediate answer from me. Without thinking I said, “I am supposed to be a girl!” My cousin started laughing, but my mom’s eyes boiled. She knew these behaviors all too well and loathed them. I could see the anger seeping out every pore on her face. She then grabbed my arm and dragged me to the back door forcefully throwing me outside screaming under her breath saying, “Stay out here till you can act like a boy! You’re an embarrassment and I will not be embarrassed here!” I sat outside with my back against the house and cried until the sun went down. They ate dinner without me and I sat there upset, hungry and not sure what to do. Eventually it got cold and when it was time to leave they almost had forgotten about me, the little faggot they had crying outside as my older brothers would state. I hated my mother for the first time that day.

Obviously my mom was more afraid of what her friends and family would think if they knew all the little secrets about me rather than acting like a mother and comforting me. Was I gay? A homosexual? My older brothers would always make fun of me calling me a homo or a little faggot. One of my older brothers used to give me the cap to the whole milk gallon and tell me to hold it up to my chest. This is when there was a little sticker on the cap that said: “HOMO” for homogenized. I wasn’t really sure what that was so I asked one of my big brothers what a homosexual was: “What’s a homosexual?” He laughed at me and said, “You’re a homosexual!” So they were making fun of me? “No, seriously…what is a homosexual?” Reluctant and puzzled by my incessant need to know the answer, my older brother finally became serious and told me, “It’s when two boys like each other, kiss and do stuff boyfriends and girlfriends do or like Mom and Dad did to have us.”

I was really confused now! Why would a boy want to kiss a boy? That was just gross to me so I ran and asked my mom, “Mom, what’s a homo boy?” I guess this was the time for the birds and the bees talk so my mother sat me down at the kitchen table, grabbed a couple books and told me how babies are made. That was an interesting day for me and a very uncomfortable day for my mother.

I started asking a lot of very odd questions that my 4 older brothers never asked. “When will I get Boobies?” I asked as if I would get some type of timeframe I could count the days to; “When will my penis would fall off.” I think my questions made her more angry than worried. “Stop that!” She said. “Why are you asking questions like that? Boys don’t get boobies and their penis doesn’t fall off, you’re a boy.” I was a boy? I didn’t know exactly how to feel. Being called a boy always made me feel a little uncomfortable but I never told anyone that. I thought that eventually I would become a girl and not be like my brothers. I was so angry I screamed at my mother, “You’re a LIAR, a big fat liar!” I then ran off to my room and slammed the door so hard I thought it might fly off the hinges.

My problem was that I never seen myself as a boy even though my body was obviously male. When I was younger I just figured I would magically turn into what all the other little girls looked like one day. The reason I was so angry at my mom was that her telling me about how babies were created made me realize that those male parts would never go away. I was essentially stuck a boy and I hated that; I hated myself! After I slammed my door I stood staring at myself in the mirror stomping my feet, screaming gibberish so loud that everyone could hear it. I ran and hid underneath my bed,crying. I cried so much that night I made my own little lake of tears on the hardwood floor while burying my face into my blanket and pillow. I was cursed.

This is one of many typical experiences I had growing up. Today I am who I was supposed to be and managed to achieve that without my family or close friends. Nobody should be forced to live a life they are not meant to be and I am happier now than I would have ever been had I not taken the appropriate route to change myself.

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