What It’s Like to be Trans

Chaz Bono – photo taken by my friend Jonas

I went to the Boston Spirit Magazine 2012 LGBT Executive Networking Night earlier this year and Chaz Bono was the guest speaker.

Now the fact that I mention Chaz Bono, transgender son of Cher and Sonny Bono, author of the autobiography Transition: The Story of How I Became a Man, subject of both the 2011 documentary Becoming Chaz and upcoming 2012 documentary Being Chaz, and recent participant on ABC’s 13th season of Dancing With the Stars, might make you think that this post is going to be about Chaz Bono.

This post is not about Chaz Bono.

I only mention Chaz because he said something that got me to thinking, and that got me to writing.  Chaz gave a 15-minute synopsis of his life as a way to explain to the audience what it’s like to be trans.  He said that he sometimes tells people who want to try to understand it to imagine that they wake up one morning, feeling the way that they do now, but discover that overnight while they were sleeping, their body changed to that of the opposite sex.

Chaz Bono – photo taken by my friend Jonas

I’ve heard other people (trans and non-trans) make that suggestion before, but I wonder about the utility of this method.  I think that it may not help some (many?) non-trans people ‘get’ what it’s like to be trans.  Why do I think that?

First, this approach focuses on having a certain body but not on how the body affects the responding actions and behaviors of others.  I’m not sure that many non-trans folks realize how much their perceived gender (as based on the sex of their body) influences the interactions that people have with them, and I doubt that they could imagine the subtle (and perhaps even not-so-subtle) differences in how they would be treated in the world if the sex of their body changed overnight.

Second, even if non-trans people could imagine what it might be like to have the body of the opposite sex, they probably would not be able to conceptualize the dysphoria that would come along with it, which can have physical manifestations and/or psychic pain and can even be debilitating for some trans folks.

Regardless of the difficulties and shortcomings of this method, however, the goal is worthwhile, at least that’s my opinion.  So, I would suggest that if a non-trans person wanted to try to understand what it is like to be trans, they could imagine something a bit more radical than the waking-up-with-a-body-of-the-opposite-sex scenario, yet not so far ‘out there’ that they can’t get their head around it.

And so, I make the following suggestion…

Consider all of the feelings and thoughts and emotions and desires that you have had throughout your life.  From as far back as you can remember all the way up to the present, think about how you have felt about yourself, who you know yourself to be, your entire essence as a human being.  Think about that, and then imagine that you were born with the body of a Golden Retriever.  A cute, fuzzy widdle puppy.  With a human brain.

Now let’s be clear. I’m not talking about trans people here.  Trans people are people.  Not you.  In this example, you’re a dog.

At least, on the outside you’re a dog.  On the inside, you’re still you, just as you are now.  But who you are on the inside, how you see yourself and how you feel about yourself, doesn’t matter to everyone around you.  They judge you by what you appear to be on the outside.  That was especially true when you were very young.

When you were a small child, everyone treated you like a puppy.  They’d talk to you like you were a puppy.  They’d play with you like you were a puppy.  They also wanted you to act like a puppy.

This confused you.  You wondered why people repeatedly expected you to chase the tennis ball they would throw for you, even though you would sit with disinterest and watch it bounce across the yard.  But they insisted, over and over, get the ball little puppy.  Go on, go get it!

Instead, you would try to play games with the other kids.  Of course, you knew that you didn’t quite look like them.  You weren’t stupid. You could see that you were covered with soft golden fur and had floppy ears and had a waggy tail and they didn’t.

Still, you knew yourself.  Even at a very young age, you knew who you were.  You knew you were a child just like they were.

So you persevered.  You would turn away from that bouncing tennis ball and pad over to where the kids were playing Monopoly and you would try to join in.  But you were always scolded and told that you were wrong.  “Bad puppy!” people would say. “Puppies don’t play board games!  Puppies chase tennis balls! Go away puppy!”

That was so confusing, so painful, and so lonely that you adapted.  You modified your behavior to please everyone around you, to meet their expectations, to be loved.  You gritted your teeth and you chased that sonofabitching tennis ball.

And when you did that, you got positive reinforcement for it.  People would pat you on the head and tell you how good you were.  It wasn’t great, but it was a hell of a lot better than repeatedly being yelled at and whacked with a rolled up newspaper.

So you put on that puppy persona and you perfected it over the years.  You were a quick learner and a great actor.  You knew what was expected of you and you performed, and everyone around you who was living their life on their own terms, well, they were happy.  You – not so much.

To add insult to injury, as you got older, your body changed, but not in the way that you’d hoped.  You thought that you would grow up to be just like everyone else.  Your innocent child mind assumed that your fur would shed off, you would grow into your ears, your tail would go away and you would have the human body that you knew you should have, that you knew would be in line with your very human mind.

But that’s not what happened.  In fact, it was just the opposite.

When you reached adulthood, you found yourself with disgusting long golden fur, hideous floppy ears and a strong, thick tail that you could feel back there wagging.  Your body had betrayed you, and you hated it.  All of it.  None of it was right. It was some sort of mismatch between what your physical body was and what your brain wiring expected it to be.

Everything about your body was so out of alignment with how you felt and knew yourself to be on the inside, that your day-to-day experiences contributed to a constant assault on your psyche.  Seeing your doggy reflection looking back at you when your mind expected a human face, looking down and seeing those paws where hands should have been, feeling that awful tail back there wagging and wagging….

If any of the people around you could have even remotely imagined the mental fortitude you needed to manage this body dysphoria while keeping all those human feelings, thoughts and emotions in check, they would have given you a medal.

Finally, you get to the point where you just can’t do it anymore.  You can’t keep putting on the dog and pony show (minus the pony).  Maybe you saw someone like you on TV and you learned that there was treatment for your condition where you thought none existed. Or maybe you happened to meet someone like you who had made a change.  Or maybe your subconscious mind just couldn’t keep your humanity in check any more.  Whatever that trigger was, it helped you to realize who you were truly meant to be.  You realize that you must change your life.

Notice that I said that you ‘realize’ rather than ‘decide.’  This isn’t a decision you’re making.  If you want to maintain your humanity, your sanity and your life, you don’t have a choice.  You must finally be true to yourself and live an authentic life.  You’re not deciding anything.  You’re just living.

Unfortunately, living an authentic life, for you, can be dangerous.  Everyone around you sees you as a lovable Golden Retriever.  They have expectations for you.  You’re supposed to chase rabbits, bark at intruders and graduate from obedience school at the top of your class.  If you don’t live up to those expectations, you risk losing the people you care about.  You risk getting kicked out of your home.  You risk violence. You risk everything, because once you do this, everyone will know that you’re different.

And not only are you different, but you’re so different that your true self defies the ability of most people around you to consider what it must be like to have the body of a canine and the mind of a human.  And because they can’t understand your experience, they dismiss it, as though you’re making it up, or you’re not in your right mind, or you actually have a choice where none really exists.

Still, you go forward, because you have finally reached the point where the pain of change has become less than the pain of staying the same.

And one momentous day, you stand up on two legs, you clear your throat, and as everyone turns to you, expecting you to bark, you look back at them and speak your truth. You say, “I am like you. I am human.”

Of course, there are reactions.  Some are severe and some are loving.  Some people will stand by you to support you to live an authentic life.  Some people will turn their backs on you and show you how their love is conditional and based on their terms alone.  (And then there will be a few people who have this sort of passive-aggressive thing going on and they will say that they’re supportive, but they’ll get their little digs in when they can while they feign a misunderstanding of some sort.  Don’t mind them – they think they’re clever but really they’re only fooling themselves.)

At this point, you start to live your life as a human.  You wear the human clothing that you’ve wanted to wear your entire life or have been wearing in secret.  You pin your ears back, bind your tail and undergo electrolysis and take hormones to shed all that damn fur.  You make plans to change your name and apply for college and a job.  And you get ready for surgery to remove your tail, shape your ears, create opposable thumbs and humanize your face.  But there are only a few surgeons in the world who perform these life-affirming surgeries and insurance companies refuse to cover them, saying that these procedures are ‘cosmetic’ even though the American Medical Association has issued a statement that you have a bona fide medical condition for which the surgeries are a valid treatment.

You don’t know how you are going to pay for these surgeries, and the laws in the state where you reside say you can’t get a birth certificate or driver’s license or be recognized as a human being until you have had the surgeries, leaving you in a legal limbo.

You hit more roadblocks.  When you go shopping for clothes, some salespeople are rude to you, humiliate you or outright ban you from coming into the store.  Some restaurants won’t serve you.  No business will hire you.  The university you want to attend won’t let you live in the dormitories. You’re not allowed to use public human restrooms and are told that you should be using the fire hydrants like the ‘rest of the dogs.’  Some jackasses on the subway harass you and scare the crap out of you in doing so, or maybe even physically harm you.  Some of the receptionists, nurses, dentists and doctors you go to see gawk at you like you’re a monkey in a zoo, and some refuse to treat you at all.  Some (thankfully, not all) “Christians” patronizingly tell you, without even knowing you or having a conversation with you to try to understand your truth, that “God doesn’t make mistakes” and you should continue to live your life as a dog because “the Bible says so,” all the while ignoring how their Christian teachings would have them recognize your humanity.

Tom Cruise scares the hell out of Oprah

On TV, talk show hosts like Oprah, Barbara Walters and Dr. Oz invite people like you onto their shows to sensationalize your condition to boost their ratings, and they ask incredibly personal questions that they would never pose to other guests like Tom Hanks, Madonna or even Tom Cruise who tends to jump up on the couch uninvited.  Sure, they practice “sympathetic journalism” with regard to your community, and perhaps even change the hearts and opinions of some people in their audiences, but in doing so, they are also taking advantage of people like you for their own gain while never really using their power and influence to advocate for you and those like you, despite the blatant discrimination against your community that they, themselves, sometimes report about on their own shows.

Activists from your community and their allies try to get anti-discrimination laws passed to protect you and others so you have a fair shot at jobs, housing, education and financial services. Opponents try to use rhetoric to reduce these bills to “bathroom legislation,” ignorantly complaining that criminals would take advantage of these laws to dress up like dogs and go into public restrooms in order to inflict mayhem by lifting their legs on the urinals and sticking their artificially wet noses under women’s skirts.  You see an interview with a state representative in Tennessee who submits a bill that would ban you and people like you from using public human restrooms.  In the interview, this public official actually threatens violence against law-abiding, tax-paying citizens by stating that he would “stomp a mud hole” in anyone like you he might see in a bathroom.

When you are out in public, you do your best to ignore the stares from strangers on the street and in the shops who cannot tell whether you are a dog or a human, you patiently explain that you are indeed human to people who try to kick you out of public restrooms, and you look forward to the day when you can afford the surgeries that will allow you to finally feel comfortable in your own body.

While you navigate these issues in your new life, you are incredibly relieved that you do not have to pretend to be a dog any more, and as you spend more time living the freedom that is your true self, you appreciate the support from people who truly love you as you are and treat you with dignity and respect, recognizing you as the human being that you have always known yourself to be.

___________________________________________________________

Of course, my tongue was firmly implanted in my cheek when I wrote this.  I do not want to give the impression that this scenario is a metaphor for the experiences of all trans people because it’s not.  What I do hope I’ve provided is a way for some non-trans people, who are so inclined, to get their head around what it might be like to have a body that doesn’t align with their mind.  I may be naive about this, but unless a person is living it, I think it might not be an easy concept for some to grasp fully, although I would bet that there are some people who aren’t trans who really do ‘get’ it.

Jamison Green’s book, “Becoming a Visible Man”

For those non-trans folks who would like to take a crack at understanding what it’s like to be trans from the point of view of “feeling” their own gender and separating it from their sex, I recommend Jamison Green’s book, Becoming a Visible Man, especially the first chapter, as a guide.

–ATM

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37 Responses to What It’s Like to be Trans

  1. Jack says:

    I don’t know that this kind of metaphor would help all that much, particularly not for people who have the mindset that you can no more change sexes than you can species. I find it’s best to stick with real-life examples of how I feel or felt trans, both physically and socially, and that those examples also serve to show how there are still so many sexist expectations even in a world where people have tried to say that girls can do anything or that it’s OK for boys to cry.

    • Thanks Jack. You may well be right.

      I wouldn’t want this post to take the place of real-life examples, just supplement them. It’s just something that popped into my head.

      • I happened to think after I commented, Jack, that I wasn’t really targeting non-trans people whose minds can’t be changed, but rather people who are genuinely curious about the trans experience and who might look for different ways to think about it.

  2. Zander Keig says:

    Reblogged this on Zander's Blog and commented:
    Disclaimer: I subscribe to/fall within the “decision” model of transitioning, yet still appreciate this blog post.

  3. Junoroche says:

    I really appreciated this blog and found it to be a useful addition to the examples ‘one’ could use to explain. I am not sure that ‘real life’ examples are always sufficiently bland enough for people to get the subtleties of being within the wrong body and the reactions that brings.

  4. Elizabeth says:

    I enjoyed this blog post as the well-written and creative piece that it is — but I suspect many will bristle at their own perhaps uncomfortable reaction (that is not to say controversy is not sometimes a good thing!) to this illustration. It’s possible individuals most sophisticated in their understanding of these issues may react to this blog entry the worst, while those who are most in need of thinking through this exercise will have it go over their head completely (or probably more likely, not be reading this blog!)…

    I’m interested in the book you recommend here — mostly because it is from the ‘self’ point of view (unlike other writings such as “Black Like Me” or “Gentleman’s Agreement” which ‘shockingly’ — at the times, anyway — tried to tell the story of bigotry without actually being from the referenced demographics). I think it’s important for anyone to try to understand another person’s point of view, but without the possibility of standing in those shoes, where you can fall into obvious traps, it’s important to not assume — either that you can truly understand without direct experience, or even if one has that ‘experience’ that any one person can speak for all.

    Anyway, it’s great as always to read your contributions to this important conversation!

  5. Wes Austin says:

    It’s a very interesting post and I’m going to reblog it to my own blog Journeys Through Gender.
    With that said, I wonder if this post will have the effect on gender congruent people that you hope it will. As a public speaker, I often ask them to think about what it would be like to be called the wrong name *all the time*. If I have a brave volunteer or two, I actually engage in a dialogue around that and *deliberately* mis-name them for a bit to bring to light my point.

    I’m excited to see such a well thought out and articulate post about one type of experience that trans folk can have.

  6. Wes Austin says:

    Reblogged this on Journies Through Gender and commented:
    It’s often hard for a trans person to describe what it’s like to *be* trans to someone who’s gender congruent. This post takes a tongue in cheek approach. Enjoy and thanks to Anderson for his articulate, humorous and thoughtful post.

  7. Nuala Reilly says:

    Well written, well said. I can’t actually imagine the pain that a trans person must live with, but hopefully when dialogues like this are started, at least with some there can be conversation and that is a big step forward. Bravo.

  8. It is very hard to come up with a good way to explain the trans experience to non-trans people. I haven’t found a way that I’m satisfied with.
    Reblogging this on http://theadventuresoftransman.com/

  9. Reblogged this on theadventuresoftransman and commented:
    American Trans Man has a well-written post on trying to explain what is like to be transgender.

  10. Y’all are giving me a warm fuzzy that’s sort of like a little puppy. I most sincerely thank you.

  11. Reblogged this on kristophersar and commented:
    A blog I follow reblogged this, which lead me to it, and which I find to be a rather great post, even without finishing it so far. It explains how frustrating it can be to be Transgender.

  12. I can’t speak for anybody else but I found this post to be the best explanation of gender identity disorder I’ve come across. Chaz’s example just didn’t work for me for exactly the reasons you stated. Thank you.

  13. medusaprose says:

    Reblogged this on medusaprose and commented:
    I am actually in tears. I think this was a beautiful post. And though I am fully cognizant of the fact that it does not encompass the experiences of every trans* (I use this as an umbrella term for anyone who identifies as Transgender, Transsexual or Gender-variant) I still think it’s a brilliant method of creating empathy with people who aren’t trans* identified and are willing to try and understand what it’s like to be a trans* identified person.

    It’s an article written with sensitivity wit and insight and the frustration described in the dog-to-human transition scenario was not lost on me. This is the experience of a lot of people I know personally, have read about and in some ways have experienced myself. I’m filled with gratitude that this post was written (so beautifully at that) and am probably going to share that story and analysis the next time I am allowed to speak at a queer forum surrounding issues of trans* identity.
    much love transparentguy for being awesome

    Medusa

  14. Joe A. says:

    Reblogged this on Joe's Transition and commented:
    Found this on another blog I follow (Thanks for sharing Trans Man). It never dawned on me to try to explain what it’s like to “be trans”. American Trans Man has hit the nail on the head, at least for my feelings. Kudos.

  15. Joe A. says:

    Reblogged on Joe’s Transition and commented:

    Found this on another blog I follow (Thanks for sharing Trans Man). It never dawned on me to try to explain what it’s like to “be trans”. American Trans Man has hit the nail on the head, at least for my feelings. Kudos.

  16. Thanks for writing this. I can get the meaning, and more understand what it’s like to be perceived as someone you know you are not, without thinking you are implying anything negative with the analogy you used. I’ve tried many times to empathize with and imagine my son’s dysphoria, and i think this post has put it in a perspective for me that has helped the most. The demeaning and belittlement of the trans* person’s experience are aspects i was not fully in touch with until reading this.

  17. Reblogged this on transbeautiful and commented:
    American Trans Man has written a very helpful analogy for understanding “What It’s Like to be Trans”. This piece really helped me grasp how demeaning it must be for a trans* person to be told time and time again, either directly by family members and other authority figures, or indirectly by society and culture, that they are “wrong” or “bad” for simply being who they are. Highly recommend this read.

  18. erichblayde says:

    Reblogged this on Muttered Musings Of An Unmuffled Mind and commented:
    While I subscribe to a somewhat more, brutal, form of explanation, this is an incredible description of the struggle trans people undergo when having to explain what it’s like.

  19. Eileen says:

    This was a beautifully written piece of writing. While I knew that my son had been deeply unhappy for years before he came out to us, your analogy brought his suffering home in a way nothing else I’ve read has. Thanks for posting this.

  20. Eileen says:

    Reblogged this on A Daughter Lost, A Son Gained and commented:
    I read this post today and found it truly effective in putting me in my trans son’s shoes.

  21. Wow, it’s a reblogapalooza! Thanks everyone for your comments. I wasn’t sure that this post would be helpful to anyone so your responses here are nice to see.

  22. maddox says:

    I’ve also struggled to come up with an example that would illustrate “the trans experience” in a way others could feel our incongruence. As a trans person, I obviously “got it” immediately, but not sure how effective this one would be on others.

    As you point out, this is particularly important when coming up with any story/example (and is most often ignored):

    I’m not sure that many non-trans folks realize how much their perceived gender (as based on the sex of their body) influences the interactions that people have with them, and I doubt that they could imagine the subtle (and perhaps even not-so-subtle) differences in how they would be treated in the world if the sex of their body changed overnight.

    • Thanks Maddox. I think that like anything else, this example will help some but not others. Based on the comments, it seems as though at least a couple aspects of the post were effective.

  23. Thank you Jack for writing this piece. You’ve given me the beginnings for understanding the challenges my trans friends have and do experience daily. Well written on several levels.

  24. hollybernabe says:

    I’ve always tried to be empathetic to transgendered individuals, and try to be treated as I would like to be treated. However, even with trying to imagine myself in somebody else’s shoes, I still don’t think I “got it”–not until I read this. This is friggin’ brilliant.

  25. I enjoyed reading this. Personally, if I was a golden retriever, I’d want to stay one. Animals don’t care about gender ;)…but in all seriousness, none of us have the ability in any way to completely touch on another’s understanding of what being trans is on a personal scale. We are all so different. But the sentiment in this piece is lovely. I felt the essence of your story, your narrative. And in many ways, found some commonalities in yours to mine. I think that as people who struggle with gender identity or those of us who have come to peace with it, this story is a wonderful way of saying “You’re not alone” and I think that in itself, is a great accomplishment.

    Lucas Silveira

    • Whoa – Lucas Silveira of The Cliks! Welcome to my blog, man, and thanks for your comments.

      Yes, I guess there is a bit of my own (and your?) narrative in the golden retriever metaphor. You’re right, of course — we can’t fully know another’s experience, whether it’s around gender or something else. Fortunately, people really do want to at least try, which, I think, brings us closer together as human beings. Like you said – “you’re not alone.”

      For readers who would like to check out Lucas’ music, you can go here: http://www.thecliks.com/

      And for those who would like to read about Lucas being voted “Sexiest Canadian Man” in 2010 (and the first trans man to win the title), go here or here.

      • By the way, I think the jury is out on whether animals care about gender. How can we know for sure, especially for the primates, dogs, dolphins and the other more-intelligent species?

  26. Trying my Best says:

    I am a non-trans who recently became friends with a trans person, the first transgender person I have ever met. I read your blog with much interest as I have tried my very best to understand and relate to this person. However, it seems that this person feels that he has been victimized for so long that he can’t seem to see through it to see when someone is treating him fairly. I have always viewed my friend as a male, but for some reason, much of what I say and do gets turned into an insult toward his gender identity. It’s been SO very confusing for me! I write this post because your comments about the discrimination against trans people struck me. I wonder, is it much different from the discrimination felt by people of different ethnic backgrounds or people of physical or mental disabilities? And are the emotional struggles different from those experienced by ones who acquires a life altering disease, one in which their mind wants to be able to function one way, but their body won’t let them. It seems to me that we all have something that causes us to feel different, discriminated against and alone. And if we aren’t able to let our walls down and let others in, we will continue to move through this world of aloneness, pushing those away who really want to care. In my case, I too have something that causes me to feel discriminated against and alone. However, my new friendship with my trans friend has been so focused on understanding him that my own situation and personal emotions and struggles have been ignored. I can’t help but wonder why? If I am so lucky as to have my friend stumble upon your blog, I urge him to read “The Spoon Theory” on the internet. Maybe then he’ll realize that my life isn’t so easy either, but I’m doing the best I can with the hand I was dealt. And just maybe he’ll try to find it in him to forgive me for the stumbles I’ve made alone the way.

    • Hello Trying your Best. Thanks for the comments. You asked some questions in there that I hesitate to try to answer, mainly because Matt Kailey is much better than I am at answering these sorts of questions, but I’ll give it a shot.

      First, regarding your trans friend, he is likely not the first transgender person you have ever met, he is just the first openly transgender person you have ever met. Trans people are everywhere – they’re just not always visibly trans and/or open about being trans.

      I’m sorry that you and he are having difficulties. There aren’t a lot of details in your comment so it’s hard for me to suggest ways to ameliorate the situation, but I can say that my own experience in these types of matters is that open and frank communication is extremely important. Perhaps you two already are effectively communicating with each other, but if not, and for this friendship to grow, or maybe even to survive, he might need to tell you exactly why the things you say insult him around his gender identity, you might need to tell him that your experiences of discrimination and isolation are just as worthy of attention as his, and you both may need to be 100% open to hearing what the other is saying.

      Regarding your question, “…your comments about the discrimination against trans people struck me. I wonder, is it much different from the discrimination felt by people of different ethnic backgrounds or people of physical or mental disabilities?” I have an opinion to this question that can’t be based on experience because I am white and do not have a physical or mental disability, but I do think that there are differences in discrimination for these different groups of people. Racism, ableism, sexism… discrimination due to these different issues might impart very different experiences to the people who are the targets of the discrimination even though the end results (i.e. loss of a job, housing, opportunities, etc) might be similar. (On a side note, I am intrigued by the way you talk about “feeling” discrimination rather than experiencing it. I would say that we have feelings based on our experiences of being discriminated against, but perhaps that is what you mean.)

      I would have a similar answer to your question, “And are the emotional struggles different from those experienced by ones who acquires a life altering disease, one in which their mind wants to be able to function one way, but their body won’t let them.” I do not have a life altering disease, so again, I based my answer on my opinion rather than experience, but I would say that the emotional struggles of someone who is trans versus those of someone who is not trans and who has a life altering disease are likely different. I think that comparing the issues outlined in “The Spoon Theory” versus those in “What It’s Like to be Trans” would support the notion that the narratives are very different. Of course, there may be similarities in the way people in these two groups are treated by others, but looking at an emotional experience, my opinion is that there are likely more differences than there are similarities. Again, that’s just my opinion. Other readers might wish to comment and weigh in.

  27. emmbee says:

    Thank you so much for this post. I recently found out that the child I’ve known as my daughter for 26 years, is really my son. Being that I am a bit obsessive/compulsive I have spent the past few weeks searching the interwebs for any and all information I can find. I have found many blogs that I now follow that have been very informative and helpful to me as our family starts this journey of transition.

    I have had a hard time explaining what transgender means to some of my family and friends. Some just can’t separate gender from sexual orientation and it has been difficult for me to find the right words to help them understand.

    Last night as I was reading through your blog, starting from the vary beginning, I came upon this post. I have shed many tears as I’ve read various other blogger’s accounts of the issues their children faced, but this post made me sob thinking about what my first born has gone through since he realized his true self at age 4.

    I have shared it with friends today and I could see the light bulbs go off. Thank you again for sharing your thoughts in a way that really hits the nail on the head for a lot of people.

    I am going to show my son your blog. He has a degree in Biology and is contemplating his future education and career paths. I think he will really enjoy the scientific/research themed posts.

    • Thank you for your very kind words. I am glad that something I wrote has been helpful. I wish you and your son and your family all the best as you continue on this journey together, and thank you for being a supportive parent.

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