I can’t believe I haven’t mentioned it yet.
It’s a question that has haunted me since I was a little kid.
If you’re a person who doesn’t know who you are or who your family is, or if you have a family member who is gay, or is trans, or has a disability, or who has a history of mental illness, you’re probably wondering if you’re really a good person to talk to.
That’s because if you’ve ever met someone with the disorder, you may have wondered if they had lied to you, too.
For me, it’s the first time I’ve ever had to explain that, but it’s also the first of many times I’ll wonder what lies lie within those words.
I was raised in a household where my parents did not support my identity.
When I was younger, I lived in a small town in the Midwest, and I lived with my parents until I was 13.
It was a rough place.
My parents had a lot of trouble with drugs and alcohol, and my older brother and I were both diagnosed with ADHD, and they kicked me out of their house and we lived on the streets.
I’m not saying that I didn’t deserve to live in a dysfunctional household, because I did.
But my family’s environment was not conducive for my success as a person, and it wasn’t conducive for me as a teenager.
The next thing I knew, I was in foster care, living in the same house as my abusive parents.
When my mom got pregnant, my father was arrested for attempted murder.
And when I got older, I got into a relationship with a guy who was my best friend, who was a teacher, who I didn’s best friend.
But we had a very different dynamic.
I had been a struggling student, and when my best friends turned to me, I would say, “I need help.”
But I didn.
I would be like, “Well, I just need to figure out who I am and who my family is.”
But for me, my family was not supportive of my self-identity.
When they knew me as transgender, they would say things like, if you tell them who you’re going to be when you grow up, they’re not going to understand.
And so I didn’ t know what to do.
I think that’s why my mom did not understand who I was until I reached a point in my life where I needed to say, I’m who I really am.
It felt like I was going to lose the person that I was, and that was a big, big deal for me.
My family was supportive of who I became.
But they were not supportive for me when I needed it the most.
They were not supporting me when they didn’t feel comfortable supporting me.
And they weren’t supportive of me when my gender expression changed.
And it was just a cycle of abuse, that cycle of abandonment, that was the cycle of who my identity was.
It wasn’t until I met a man that I really had that confidence.
And that’s how I learned to be who I wanted to be.
What I found out from my friend, my partner, was that when you know someone well, you know that they don’t need to be like me.
They don’t have to be your brother, your sister, your auntie, your neighbor, your coworker.
You don’t want them to have to live with the same family.
I learned that from my best-friend.
And from my partner.
My partner told me that if I was ever in a situation where he didn’t want to live, I should just be happy that he was happy, and he should never have to do that.
My best friend told me the same thing.
She said, “You should never be ashamed of who you have been.
You’re not the person you’ve been.
Your story is your story.
And if you ever have to make a choice about who you will be in the future, do that with your family.”
I told her, “Yeah, but if I choose to be a transgender person, that doesn’t mean that I’m gonna be happy with that.”
My best- friend, her partner, and her partner have all told me how they felt about my gender transition.
I don’t know if I’ve shared all the stories I’ve heard from them, but I’ve told all the ones that I’ve found helpful.
And I’ve learned that when people tell me that I should be proud of who they are, they mean it.
They’re not trying to be mean.
They really want to be able to live authentically.
They want to feel like their identity is recognized.
I told my best partner that I am proud of what I’m doing.
I am doing this because I love who I’ve been and I want to do this because it will give me the confidence to live the life that I want. I