Someone recently asked me what it was like being transgender. It wasn’t the first time I had been asked that question and I have come to know that this transgender journey is indeed a mystery to others. Yet, I’ve been thinking – most people may already know what it really is like to be trans.

Consider . . .

If you have ever held a secret so deep and dark and knew you could never, ever share it with anyone and hoped you would die before that secret got out – you might already know what it’s like to be trans.

If you ever felt, you were always on the outside looking in and belonging nowhere – you may know how it feels to be trans.

If you have ever looked in the mirror and saw someone else looking back – if you have ever been rejected by your family and unwelcome at family events – if you have ever been laughed at, disparaged, or made to feel you are less of a human being merely because of the way you look – you know how it feels to be trans.

If you have ever been worried that you might lose your job or your apartment or even your friends merely because of the way you are – you know what it’s like to be trans.

If you have ever been told you should not attend a friend’s funeral because you would create a spectacle – you might possibly know what it’s like to be trans.

If you have ever been terrified to speak – at the deli counter, in a store, in a restaurant, at a movie theatre box office, or even nervous about answering the phone – you might know how it feels to be trans.

If you have ever been told that you are going to hell, not for what you have done, but merely because of the way you are – if you have ever lived with relentless guilt and shame, blaming yourself for something completely beyond your control – you know what it’s like to be trans.

If you have been told that someone will continue to love you only if … you change, or stop, or comply, or deny – you definitely know how it feels to be trans.

If you have ever felt utter hopelessness; feeling you just cannot take another step – if you have ever been so desperate for something; wishing and praying and hoping beyond hope … and eventually realizing that your dreams are so futile – you do indeed know what it’s like to be trans.

If you’ve ever felt like the biggest mistake in the universe has occurred, and you are it – you know what it’s like to be trans.

If you’ve ever felt so sad and hopeless and unable to function, and then been told to “get over it” – you definitely know what it’s like to be trans.

If you’ve ever felt like the world was crashing down around, you from all directions with nowhere to turn and nowhere to go – you know how it feels to be trans.

If you have ever been curled up on the floor in the middle of the night crying your eyes out; feeling isolated and lost and so desperate that you can hardly breathe – you absolutely know how it feels to be trans.

Being transgender is a lonely, difficult journey filled with anguish and pain. From an early age we are confronted with a mind-numbing realization that this life is going to be really, really hard. Yet, for most anyone – trans or otherwise, each of our journeys is really, really hard. There is no monopoly on pain and we all must endure our own dose of what life has in store.

So, what is it like to be transgender?

I would guess you already know.

Laura Anderson is an educator, author, researcher, parent, and granddad. Her years teaching in public school classrooms as male provided the foundation for her more recent role educating future teachers. Living female for the past decade, she has come to appreciate the privileges she once held – both male and cisgender – privileges now replaced with the fulfillment of living as her true self.

Please follow and like us:
error

Author Profile

Laura Anderson
Laura Anderson
Laura Anderson is an educator, author, researcher, parent, and granddad. Her years teaching in public school classrooms as male provided the foundation for her more recent role educating future teachers. Living female for the past decade, she has come to appreciate the privileges she once held – both male and cisgender – privileges now replaced with the fulfillment of living as her true self.