When I was younger I quickly learned about growing up and adulthood by consuming overly exaggerated movies about the high school ecosystem, and the action-filled lives of adulthood. These movies helped prepare me for the problems I was bound to face like having a crush and dealing with boys and relationships and being a part of society and expressing my feminism (not the movement, the outward expression of being female) and worrying about my outward appearance.
Now I’m here. I’ve survived for this long and finally reached what grown-ups describe as “the pinnacle of my existence as a human being”: high school.
At first I actually did face these problems, in middle school I was consumed with this strong desire to find a boyfriend. I was convinced that if I failed in this endeavor I would fail as a women, I would be deemed a lost sheep that needed psychological help. I knew I wasn’t sick or unwell or mentally challenged (though none of these things keep people from finding love) I believed I needed to find a mate to prove to society that I was okay, normal.
After a while I had grown tired of developing a friendship with a boy and liking him so much I started to change. I felt like a hormonal transformer that just kept changing with the development of new relationships. Depending on the person I would act more girly or more cutesy or more this or more that to try to mold myself into who I believed they wanted me to be. I changed myself in hopes of keeping this person from seeing who I was because I knew that once he saw my flaws he wouldn’t want to be my friend anymore. I had this problem with letting people go and letting relationships die so I changed myself until I barely became recognizable to myself or even to my bestest friend in the world. I don’t remember her ever telling me that I was changing, I think she just knew I would come around eventually and thankfully I did because (little did I know then) she was the relationship I should have held the closest.
Looking back now, I am glad that all of that constant change is over because it was emotionally draining for me, I had to remember which person liked which version of me and how I was supposed to act around certain people and how I was supposed to feel around certain people. It was probably draining for those around me who had to endure my ever changing personalities and attitudes created only to impress people.
Now that I actually am in high school I realized all these problems were nothing compared to understanding the most basic issue, that I never knew could even be an issue: my gender.
This school year I noticed in the back of my head that some days I felt like a female but other days I felt uncomfortable with my body and felt like a male or at the very least something not within the binary of gender. At first I was scared, I had never heard of something like this so I just ignored it, I moved on. ignoring those thoughts worked for a while but at some point feeling uncomfortable in my own body became unbearable, and for those of you who don’t understand how that feels: Every move you make feels wrong and unnatural. As if someone forced my consciousness into someone else’s body that I knew I didn’t belong to. I wasn’t comfortable in my own skin which led to me becoming frustrated and a little irritable but I believed I had no reason to worry about. I was a teenager going through regular hormonal changes, so I went on with my life.
Part of my life being my school’s Gay-Straight Alliance club (or No Place for Hate). At first I joined the club to bother my brother, the treasurer of GSA but after he graduated, I stayed. I had made a few friends and I really enjoyed the environment that was created by the community. We could say things that I couldn’t say to my friends, like how it was okay to be confused and not know who we are. Every single GSA meeting made me realize how shockingly uninformed I was. Even though I’ve been in public school all my life, they never spoke of all the different sexualities in sex-ed. I only remember heterosexual relationships and the CATASTROPHIC results of unprotected sex. No one said anything about having multiple genders or not wanting to have a sexual relationship at all. No one talked about how biological sex and gender and sexuality exists on a big beautiful spectrum and are not just binaries that label us by what we look like. Female. Male. Gay. Straight. We’re so blissfully unaware of all the beauty hidden within all of us.
Point is: No one told me that one can feel their gender change fluidly. I never prepared for that.
Please watch this video for a better perspective, and a better understanding of what I’m trying to say.